DEAR MISS MANNERS: I had a boy call my daughter. They are both in kindergarten. I feel that is too young to have boys calling my daughter. I gently told the boy that she could not come to the phone.
He called right back, so I told him the same thing again, very nicely, and then asked to speak to his mom. I told her that I had met her son at school and thought he was a handsome and sweet boy, but I didn't want to start a pattern of my 5-year-old daughter receiving phone calls yet. I explained it was nothing personal, just a personal family decision. I also said that I would love to arrange a play date, but I would prefer to have the moms set that up, rather than the kids.
I have told a few of my friends about the conversation and they all acted shocked about my decision. They said they agreed that kindergarten was too young, but they wouldn't have said anything. They said that I was very "bold."
By the looks on their faces and the tone of their voice, I felt like that was a bad thing.
How should I have handled it differently? What is the age that kids should start calling the opposite sex? I was hoping for junior high.
GENTLE READER: Do you believe that the young gentleman from kindergarten was planning to ask your daughter to join him for cocktails and dancing? Might he have declared that she had stolen his heart and asked her to console him?
Miss Manners sees nothing wrong with your withholding telephone privileges from your very young daughter. What shocks her, and perhaps startled your friends, is the fear of overtures from the opposite sex. You are either ahead of the times, in assuming that the ever-decreasing age of romantic interest has sunk to kindergarten, or behind the times in not recognizing that simple friendships also exist between the genders at all ages.
DEAR MISS MANNERS: We will write out my daughter's wedding invitations on ecru paper, in formal style -- Mr. and Mrs. Happy Parents request the honour of your presence, etc.
Should we use the same kind of card stock used for engraved invitations?
If using folder style (instead of panel), do we write on the outside or the inside? Are inside envelopes necessary in order to indicate exactly who is invited if all members of the household are not included in the invitation?
My daughter and I dislike reply cards so we are taking a chance and not using them. We anticipate needing to make a number of follow-up phone calls, but since only close family members and intimate friends are on the invitation list, it will be nice to chat.
GENTLE READER: You have chosen the prettiest and most gracious way of issuing a wedding invitation. The most expensive engraved invitations are merely a concession to the fact that few people have the time or the handwriting to write by hand.
The style is therefore the same, with the writing on the outside of the folded sheet, preferably of that heavy stock. Two envelopes are used, not to indicate who is invited -- both outside and inside envelope should contain those names -- but to protect the invitation from the ravages of the postal system.