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manners MATTER BY KAREN LA CORTE I Holiday Manners Karen La Corte is an etiquette and manners expert trained and certi- fied by the Emily Post Institute in Vermont. She has been teaching eti- quette and manners to children and adults for over thirty years. She is also a certified image and fashion consultant. Karen is happy to answer any personal etiquette or image questions you may have by emailing her at t’s that magical time of the year again – The Holidays! Along with the shopping, the deco- rating, holiday cards, the cooking and the baking, it’s the season for spreading Christmas cheer. Family gatherings, neighborhood get- togethers, church socials, and the “obligatory” company party are just a few events you might find yourself attending. How do we get through the rush, the frus- tration, the bad tempers, and the rudeness and still mind our manners? Well, it’s all about ATTITUDE. Embracing the season will make the busiest time of year easier to deal with than the Bah Humbug approach. Smile. Think posi- tive. It’s all about mind-set. Your game plan – to make this the best holiday season ever! Now that I have you on-board, let’s focus on a few tips that will help you keep your cool and make your season bright. The secret to success in finding joy in the holi- day season is ORGANIZATION. Make lists. I’m a big proponent of making lists for everything. It frees up my brain from being on overload by having to re-member everything I have to do. Make a list for gifts (who receives the gift and an idea of what you want to give), for meal plan- ning and entertainment (this includes the menu for Christmas dinner as well as the appetizers you want to make for that cocktail party), and a list for your décor (when going to Target do you need lights, ornaments, extension cords etc.?) Next, PLAN. Make sure you put all your social obligations and appointments on your calendar. If you have more than one function on the same day, check the timing. If it’s possible you may want to go to two out of three. Don’t laugh. It happens. The most important thing here is to RSVP. Practice good manners by respecting the fact that the host/hostess needs to know if you’re attending, by her RSVP date, in order to plan for the party. WHAT TO WEAR – When all else fails, ladies wear that little black dress. That dress or black pants suit can be dressed up with a red or green jacket, jewelry to match, or a fabulous shoe that no one can take their eyes off of. Gentlemen can always wear black or brown slacks and a crisp white shirt. When wearing a jacket, a red or green silk handkerchief in your pocket goes along wa H܈[K\[][Hܛ][\X[܈H[ܙH\X[Z\[ [^\˜X]H \\]\YX[H8'Y^H]\K'H][YX[HX]\܂\]Z[˂HTH8$[H]H]\B\Oˈ[\[H[ˈ[H]\]H[\\[H\K\‘SH8(SԑSS8(SPTS[HH\Y\XXZ\Y[HXYHˈ\œ\ܙ\X[\\[K[\[H[Hܚ]]\H^KQS8$H]HYHY\]Y[ۙHX[HZ\ˈHو]\܈HXKB]X\HYXK[H۸&]YYXZH[\HZ]\H[\\HHY][XZ[H\H[YX]X\Y\\[[\[Z[KY[܈[\Xܙ][K]\X[B\[HYH \وH\B[H\H][[ˈ][\\XX][ۋ\˜[HHHو[K\܈ZY™܈^[\K]\X]HH\H]]Xۛ BY[H \H[[[K[ ]\۸&]H]\ ]X[\]\]B[[HKKQQS8$\\H\H\H[[^B[[ۋx&]H[ۙH] Y] ]YX]H\BوH\ۘ[Y x&[H[[[H] \\H]][ۈ[[\]\Y[Y[ SS8$ۛ[\[Z] HۈHۜ\KB]HYH\XX[H]H\[H\KH]HHۙB[[H܈\[H\Y\8$]H[ B[X\HX]Y[ۙH[™^\]H\[H\X\\HH\\H[YHYHۙHۈXZˈ\\܈B\]Hܙ[^][ۈY^H\]^\\H\[ [[Z]X\HBSӑT8$][HۈX[\[H]B\K[H[XY\Y\\[X[H[B]H܈]YKUQSH8$Y[[]H[\\X]\H^B\H]و[][H[H[ۛHXZ\[H™\[YKY[H]HH؛[K\XZHX[Y\QVHT8$]\[ۙH[HKB^H\ YH\H[[Y[YHHۙK\YB]\][]\[ۙHۛ]^H]HۙH܂H\YX\Y]8&\YY[H[\XZHH\وHXK[H[YX[[YH] \\BHXH\\[^\\XX]Y\][B[ۛX]H[HݙKHH[ B[و]\]Y]K[H\H\Y[Yۂ[\HH\][Y^H\Hٙ\[ۘ[B[Y X[܈Y\\\HX\XKTS8$܈HZ[\ۋZ\\\ؘ\\܈[[ۙH[H]\Y[\ܛZ[H\XB܈[K]\X[\]H[HH[ۙ]\BY\]Z][[HYH]\\Y[H܈]\XK\Z[[XZ]HH[[۝™^H^H܈Z\\XH[KPQP8$8'X\x'K8'[[x'K[8'[x&\B[Yx'H\HXYXܙ][[H^B܈]\\XH[ܙX]HH[\][\B\]\[HˈܘX[\ۙ\]Y[H[Y[ B[\Hۙ^H[\XY[\ˈ[x&[Y[]\܈Z[[[[[\HYHKB^HY\[ۙH^K\HY^\BՑSPTPSPT MZ^KB