Congratulations on your engagement! You found your match -- that's the hardest part. The rest is just blissful happily ever after, right? Well, sort of. Engagements tend to bring an onslaught of unsolicited advice.
Karen Cleveland is a Toronto-based etiquette writer and advisor. Her column, Finishing School, tackles all things etiquette, from the traditional to the taboo.
Tis the season...The holidays can feel like you're partying like it is your job, and that very well might be true for the next few weeks. Here are the seven tenets of getting through the professional...
12/19/2014 06:00 EST
Isn't it ironic that what's supposed to be the season of giving, reflecting and general do-gooding is tied up in the most stressful expectations for shopping and hosting? It can be enough to make you want to say bah humbug, but please, don't. Here are some common holiday conundrums, and some advice on how to stay merry.
11/24/2014 12:50 EST
The survey showed that respondents overwhelmingly admit to using their smartphone to tune someone out, or to avoid conversation. Fully 75 per cent of people said they purposefully use their smartphone to tune people out and nearly a third (30 per cent) even admitted to doing so on the day they were surveyed.
07/17/2014 12:35 EDT
Don't know your Hatha from your Ashtanga? One of the best things about yoga is its intrinsically welcoming nature -- your practice is really just that, your own. And while everyone is welcome, certain behaviours are not.
03/20/2014 12:44 EDT
Bring your phone so that you can smartly map out where you and your date are meeting, so you can get there nice and early. If you are going to a place that doesn't take reservations, arriving well before your date will ensure you're not awkwardly huddling in the freezing doorway, waiting for a table to open up.
02/11/2014 05:23 EST
If you haven't been hit over the head with onslaught of bad chocolate and tacky lingerie, count yourself lucky. Then, come on out from the rock that you've been living under, and concede that Valentine's Day is here. But your honey might not give a hoot about how commercial or stupid you think February 14 is -- they might still be hoping you do something, anything, to mark the occasion.
02/04/2014 12:18 EST
Festive? Cocktail? Or festive cocktail? The language of party invitations is key to cracking the dress code, well, code. Following are some cues to heed in your choice of attire. And heed away. Here's a guide to help you interpret the holiday party lingo.
12/16/2013 12:01 EST
The Munk Debate titled "The End of Men: Be it resolved that men are obsolete" let me down. I had my face in my hands, cringing at what these women -- billed as voices of modern feminism -- were saying. Get off the stage, I thought. You're hurting feminism more than you're helping it right now. For the first time in my life, as a proud graduate of York University's Women's Studies program who was raised on Gloria Steinem and Naomi Wolf, I felt anxious identifying as a feminist. How could, and where did, the debate go so horribly wrong?
11/19/2013 05:20 EST
If you log a typical eight or nine hour workday, you likely spend more time with colleagues than friends -- all the more reason to inject some kindness into these business relationships. Regardless of whether it it is your first week or fifth year, inspire kindness among your colleagues with these tips.
09/11/2013 12:22 EDT
People for Good are at it again, carrying on their crusade for kindness. Thank goodness, literally, for their selfless goal of making the world a better place, one good deed at a time. Incidentally, w...
08/09/2013 10:25 EDT
The subject of wedding gifts, from the lead up events, to the expectations on guests, to the cost of all the rigmarole, is a loaded one. To set the record straight, it's nice to bring a gift to a wedding, it's a norm some might say, but couples are never to expect or demand a gift. That reeks of entitlement.
07/18/2013 09:17 EDT
To cram into a packed subway train, you might never guess this is a country known for its politesse. But People for Good, a coalition formed in 2011 by a collaboration between a media and creative agency, has a simple, albeit grandiose, mandate: to make the world a kinder place, one good deed at a time.
07/03/2013 05:05 EDT
When I don't know what I want to drink, or what to serve friends, I default to a Negroni. A classic cocktail with three ingredients, this drink doesn't require a minor in mixology or complicated bar equipment (you don't even need a shaker) -- and yet it is a damn solid drink. Here's how to make one.
05/29/2013 12:40 EDT
How could adding boiling water to leaves get so complicated? Pinkies up or down? Conventions abound when it comes to tea service, but it need not be fussy. In fact, some of the traditions actually have interesting roots.
04/24/2013 05:20 EDT
Send those thank you emails. Send them liberally and sincerely. While efficiency is key, particularly in a business capacity, I also appreciate doing business with nice people. Kindness and thoughtfulness go a long way in building and maintaining relationships, a distance that efficiency alone cannot.
03/12/2013 05:46 EDT
As if Emily Post prophesized the Internet's ability to make a message go viral, she warned, "Never write a letter to anyone -- no matter whom -- that would embarrass you were you to see it in a newspaper above your signature." Or, I'd add to that, a screen grab of your declaration on someone's Tumblr. This all sounds terribly unromantic, doesn't it?
02/07/2013 12:19 EST
Emails are to the art of letter writing what instant coffee is to a meticulously crafted espresso. I know, I know, email is so much more convenient than sitting down to write a note by hand. Not every message warrants a handwritten note, but don't write them off entirely (horrible pun intended).
01/30/2013 05:35 EST
January is the perfect month to re-calibrate and set intentions for the year ahead. Of course, some help from an internationally renowned Buddhist teacher certainly can't hurt. U.K.-based Buddhist teacher Gen-la Kelsang Dekyong will give a free talk in Toronto on Wednesday, January 30 on Meditation & Modern Buddhism.
01/04/2013 05:24 EST
A daunting shopping list, annoying music at full volume, crowds of people walking with their heads down texting...welcome to the fresh hell that is holiday shopping. The stress of shopping can make even the most festive, patient person want to start throwing elbows, but some of the trauma can be curbed with these five tips.
12/11/2012 05:28 EST
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