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Reunion Etiquette

About a year ago, my cousin informed me that my mother’s side of the family was having a family reunion. Because I had not had the opportunity to meet them, I felt much excitement and a little apprehension; I immediately said “I want to go.” I decided right then that I wanted to meet, hopefully connect with, and begin a relationship with these long-lost relatives. I later found out that I was the long-lost relative. That’s another story for another day; however, I am pleased to report that it was a delightful experience. I now have a whole new set of wonderful people (relatives) in my life.

Meeting and Greeting

Hello Readers,

Are you comfortable and confident in meeting people for the first time?  What about if it’s the second or even the third time and you don’t recall their name?  What’s the proper thing to do?

Sometimes I sit back and observe how people approach each other, how they greet each other, and how they initiate conversation.

I observe facial expressions and body language. It does not matter whether a person is 6 years old or 60 years old, one can learn how to meet and greet with poise and confidence.  Allow me to share with you a couple of observations along with some tips that you easily incorporate into your introduction style, putting you in the comfort zone.

How SELE™ Came To Be

In my previous message, I said I would share more about SELE™. What is Social Education & Life Etiquette and why should you care?

Please allow me share with you how I got started and how SELE came to be. Appropriate behavior, good manners, and home training was instilled in me and other family members from an early age. I give my credit to my great-grandmother for not letting us act “too common”.  Yes, those are the exact words.  We had to wash our hands before eating, wash our feet after running around outside barefoot; we could not lean back in a chair (unless it was a rocking chair); and we had to say grace before we ate. All adults were addressed by Mr. or Ms., and there was a “price to pay” for “misbehaving”. Those early teachings have remained with me.

Introducing Life Etiquette

Have you ever experienced those moments of great motivation and inspiration; moments when the motivation and inspiration is so strong and the vision is so clear that you cannot contain yourself.  You have to do something about it.  I have experienced those moments many times over the years.  This is one of those moments.  I woke this morning around 4:15am with this message in my head.  I was strongly encouraged; no I was nudged to get up an write this blog.  You see, it’s about commitment.  I part of “etiquette” is about commitment; it’s about being who you say you are, which further translates to doing what you said you would do.  I have not done that.  I live and breathe “etiquette” if you will; it’s my passion.

Through this blog, I will share with you information, stories, and anecdotes, tips, tools, and strategies to help you navigate the world with class and grace.  As I learn and grow, so will you.

So, stay tuned.  There’s more to come.

Ms. J, Life Etiquette Expert

Coffee Shop Etiquette

Ms. J Blog Black Coffee and Waffle Bar

Since the opening of Black Coffee and Waffle Bar, located at the corner of Marshall and Cretin Avenues, I have had my eyes on visiting.  Just the look of the place–kind of upscale and neighborhoody (I know that’s not a real word but it works) at the same time–a bit artsy, peaked my interest. It seems to speak fresh, high-quality ingredients, locally roasted coffee beans…and who could resist homemade waffles with delectable sounding names and toppings such as Banana Nut and Strawberry Cheese Cake.

If you know me, you know that dessert is my favorite course.  Some people think breakfast when they think waffles, but who are we kidding, this is dessert regardless of the time of day.  If it makes you feel better to call it breakfast, between 7am and 11:59am, be my guest.

Today my curiosity about Black Coffee and Waffle Bar was partially satisfied. Because I just couldn’t take in another calorie, outside of a skinny latte, I had to turn down the waffles.  However, I do intend to return on an empty stomach.  I have to admit that I experienced “waffle envy” as I watched a plate of Banana Nut, and yes, you guessed it, Strawberry Cheese Cake float by me.  For a moment, I was distracted from my conversation, right Josh?

Regarding “coffee shop etiquette” I spoke with my barista, Nick.  Nick agreed that one of the main things that patrons should remember is that baristas are highly trained professionals, and should be treated as such.  He agreed with some of the other baristas around town that customers should be patient when requesting specialty coffee drinks.  If you want instant, you will get instant; but if you want a high-quality, freshly made brew, be prepared to wait on it.

Thank you Black Coffee and Waffle Bar; in the words for Arnold Schwarzenegger, “I’ll be back.”

Tomorrow, I will be visiting Java Express at the Union Depot, Downtown St. Paul.

This is Ms. J, Life Etiquette Expert on Coffee Shop Etiquette