Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Raising Miss Manners
I said long before having a child that I would rather not have kids than have bratty ones. I am not talking about the regular toddler 2-year old behavior of whining and temper tantruming (it's normal, right?). I am talking about the type of kid who you know that they have parents who have no clue how to set limits at home. You've been behind them in the grocery store, sat in front of them on an airplane and I know you have had at least one break one of your valuables when visiting. They are the kids who need a behavioral smackdown from Supernanny.
I am not saying that there aren't days when I want to send my child to live with gypsies, but I believe in raising a child who is polite from as early as possible. That being said, I stink at certain areas of decorum. I am really bad about thank you notes. There, I've said it. Shoot me.
However there are certain words that are essential for having a well mannered kid:
"Please" - A politeness staple. Often accompanied in our house by the words, "help", "more", "mama" and "sweetie".
"Thank you" - Essential for a child who has just received something you probably would have given her anyway if she had cried hard enough.
"Excuse me" - Particularly helpful after someone farts (not saying who, just sayin').
"Pleased to meet you" - Now this is a moment to brag. My kid actually said this last week, AND she extended her hand to a grown-up when she said it. I have no idea where she got that from, but it sure makes me look good.
Her favorite thing to say is "bless you", which means that every sneeze, cough and unusual body sound gets a tiny "bless you" no matter where you are in the house. Which also means a lot of blessing during allergy season in Tennessee.
We have some time before we have to deal with my other pet peeves, like wearing an iPod while someone is talking to you, texting someone else while someone is talking to you and making mouth noises while you eat (bleccchhh!). Now if anyone can help me figure out how to get her to not pick her nose in public, that would be great. Seriously, Kid, we are not mining for gold.