Q. Our son will be getting married next spring in another town five hours away. As we plan for the rehearsal dinner, I need to know if we are to invite the out-of-town guests who will be in town the night before the wedding? Should they receive a separate invitation to the rehearsal dinner? We have not had this situation arise in our family before and I want to do what is appropriate.
A. Yes, out-of-town guests are traditionally invited to attend the rehearsal dinner the night before the wedding. All guests invited to attend the rehearsal dinner should receive a separate invitation.
Q. My fantastic hairdresser, whom I have gone to for years and years, is moving to another state. She has recommended another hair dresser in the same shop and although I like the way this hairdresser does other ladies, she talks and talks and talks. She asks her clients lots of questions, personal questions about their families, etc. I can’t stand that. I have a stressful job. Consequently, I like to go to the beauty shop, relax and not have to talk, especially about me and my family or about her or her family or her problems. I don’t want to try another shop, so how can I tactfully tell this hair dresser the first time I go to her, to cut the talking.
A. Understand. You are not alone. Many women like to relax at the beauty shop. Setting your ground rules, so to speak, at your first appointment is essential. Here is what I suggest:
“Although I’ve been coming to this shop for quite some time, we haven’t really had a chance to meet. I am a rather quiet person, but I have a very stressful job which requires me to spend most of my day talking on the phone to clients or meeting with them in my office. Therefore, having my hair done is one of few opportunities I get to relax. I hope you will understand that I prefer to be able to close my eyes and not talk a lot while having my hair done.”
Q. My husband and I have been invited to a surprise birthday party for a close friend of ours during the holidays. It is on a night when, for many years we traditionally have a holiday party in our own home and have always invited this birthday person and his wife to our party. Do you think we need to cancel our traditional party or change the date?
A. It’s unfortunate your friend’s surprise birthday party has been scheduled on this same night when you traditionally host your own holiday party each year. You are not obligated, however, to cancel or reschedule your party. Do, however, call your friend’s wife and explain why you will not be able to attend the surprise party for her husband. Also, try to set up a late date with her for you and your husband to go out together with them to celebrate her husband’s birthday.
Q. We’re going to be moving in early January. Would it be proper to put a new address card inside our Christmas cards? Or are we obligated to write a note about our move and include the new address in the note? That’s a lot of writing.
A. It would be nice to provide a new address card which would include the effective date. It could then be removed and filed by those receiving your Christmas card. You would, however, still want to write a short note regarding the news about your move. For example: “We are excited about John’s selection for a new job in Phoenix and look forward to our move there. Please keep our new address card so that we can stay in touch and if you are ever going to be in Phoenix, please let us know. We would love to see you.”
Dianne Isbell is a local contributing writer. Send your etiquette questions to Dianne Isbell at Belleville News-Democrat, P.O. Box 427, 120 S. Illinois St., Belleville, IL 62222-0427, or email them to firstname.lastname@example.org.