When I host an event, I’m inevitably asked by one or more of my guests, “Is there anything I can bring?” Often, these are the very guests who did not RSVP in a timely manner and we’re holding this conversation only a few days or hours before the event.
I understand that for many in our culture, especially here in California, gatherings are casual, last-minute, and free-flowing. I believe everyone needs close friends and family where this is true. However, as a general rule, there are a few very basic courtesies that Tea Party Girl dreams of all guests understanding. It simplifies the invitation process for the hostess and the guest.
The Top Three Actions of the Gracious Guest According to Tea Party Girl*
- RSVP ASAP. When the gracious guest receives an invitation, she lets the hostess know as soon as she is able whether or not she will attend.
- She brings a hostess gift, she doesn’t ask what she can bring. If it is a potluck/group effort, the hostess will communicate this.
- She, the guest, arrives and departs in a timely manner.
Ignoring any of the above three simple courtesies communicates to the hostess that the guest does not know or appreciate the heart and work that has gone into preparing for said guest.
The goal of etiquette is not to promote stuffiness but to know the simple and beautiful ways to communicate honor of one another through our actions. Do you agree?
*I used feminine pronouns for simplicity’s sake.