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We could spend hours diving into every aspect of table do’s and don’ts, but I want to give you my top 13 tips that will help you navigate any social or business gathering with confidence.

When God knitted together our precious children before they were even born, I am convinced he also wove in their personalities, gifts, and a love language! The concept of “love languages” is that each of us expresses and receives love in a unique way. The five love languages identified by Gary Chapman in his bestselling book are: Touch, Words of Affirmation, Acts of Service, Quality Time, and Gifts.

When God knitted together our precious children before they were even born, I am convinced he also wove in their personalities, gifts, and a love language! The concept of “love languages” is that each of us expresses and receives love in a unique way. The five love languages identified by Gary Chapman in his bestselling book are: Touch, Words of Affirmation, Acts of Service, Quality Time, and Gifts.

Vacations are back on the calendar, and many people are crossing the country through our friendly skies. I thought a refresher on airport and plane travel might do us all a little good.

I heard the most interesting ad the other day. There is a company that offers private-type flights for the commercial world. They describe themselves as a “hop on jet service.” On their website it states, “The convenience of private air but at commercial prices.” I looked them up, and there was one flight from Dallas to Houston for only $99!

“Conflict is part of every marriage. Thirty-seven percent of newlyweds admit to being more critical of their mates after marriage. And 30 percent report an increase in arguments. Whether you argue does not determine the health of your marriage. Far more important than how often you argue is how you argue.

With Father’s Day coming soon, you and your family will be celebrating one of the most important men in your life- Dad. As a child, he was your hero, your protector, and your solid rock. Now that you are older, you admire him for all that he has done for you and you still look to him for advice and wisdom. Picking out the perfect gift for Dad is not easy!

School is almost out for summer! Many of us want to gift our child’s teacher something special at the end of the year for all the love, kindness, and patience they have poured out on our little ones. Being a teacher is not easy, and they are so deserving of our gratitude especially after this wild 20/21 school year! Some common go-to gifts you might have thought of are bath and body products, Starbucks gift cards and mugs, but below are some additional gift ideas your child’s teacher will be touched to receive:

School is almost out for summer! Many of us want to gift our child’s teacher something special at the end of the year for all the love, kindness, and patience they have poured out on our little ones. Being a teacher is not easy, and they are so deserving of our gratitude especially after this wild 20/21 school year! Some common go-to gifts you might have thought of are bath and body products, Starbucks gift cards and mugs, but below are some additional gift ideas your child’s teacher will be touched to receive:

Graduation is a pivotal point in a young person’s life. It is the beginning of a season of responsibility, coming of age, and independence. As these twenty-somethings are about to discover the meaning of “adulting,” here are some gift ideas that will no doubt be a blessing in your college grad’s new life.

If some of you are thinking, “I believe I have read this letter before,” you would be correct. Our son and daughter (in law) had a beautiful wedding ceremony planned for April of 2020. As with thousands around the country, they had to postpone the big event, but chose to hold a private covenant ceremony in our backyard. Well, we are finally celebrating their wedding vows, and it was on my heart to re-post the letter I wrote to my son last year. Some things have changed (he is now 25, not 24 as the letter states), but I hope you enjoy!

 I heard the most interesting ad the other day. There is a company that offers private-type flights for the commercial world. They describe themselves as a “hop on jet service.” On their website it states, “The convenience of private air but at commercial prices.” I looked them up, and there was one flight from Dallas to Houston for only $99! 

“We read a lot of articles and books about how to get through the engagement process, but no one ever talked to us about what it would be like the first year of our marriage. I wish we had known what to expect,” said one of the couples my husband and I mentor. This is a common comment, and if you find yourself having similar feelings, do not fret! You are not alone. The first year of marriage is fabulous, but it can also be difficult. Two people learning to become one does not happen overnight.

We all like to think we have good manners in marriage, but with the people that are closest to us, we can sometimes find ourselves slipping a bit. As stated by Cindy Grosso of the Charleston School of Protocol, manners are not about a bunch of rules. Manners are the outward manifestation of the condition of our heart. If we have a heart that loves, honors, respects, and cherishes our spouse, then these traits will show in how we behave.

Society is opening and people are resuming long overdue vacations. This is great news! I recently posted some tips on making your travels successful, but let’s focus on dos and don’ts of traveling with friends.

 

1. Boundaries: When traveling with others, set guidelines, boundaries, and expectations before leaving town. If you know you and your husband want one night to yourselves, express this up front. If a quiet breakfast in bed is necessary to start your day, see if this fits with the group’s schedule. 

  • Lisa Lou

Business Card Etiquette



As we continue to move away from COVID-19 lockdown, the American people are going on interviews and getting back to work. Now is a good time to brush up on business card etiquette. These 10 tips will give you the confidence needed when giving and receiving this all-important staple in a person’s life.


1. Keep your card with you and always have them available. If you are attending a networking lunch, this is important, but even if you are out to dinner with your spouse your cards should be easily accessible. It looks unprofessional when digging around your purse to locate a card. It gives the impression of disorganization and not performing at the top of your game. Forgetting your card or appearing disorganized can also mean missed opportunities.


2. If attending a social or business event, only offer your card if you are asked for your card. It comes off too salesy if you hand them out unsolicited.


3. Cards should be protected. The best way to do this is find a case that fits neatly in the pocket of your purse. (Side note: When it comes to the size of your card consider the audience in which you mingle. Traditional calling card size is 3.5”x2”. When you hand another person your card, they might choose to store it in their own personal case. If what you hand them is an unusual size, this is not possible, and your information will be shoved into a pocket or forgotten. The other way to think of this is use your card to garner attention. Going with a square instead of a rectangle will ensure your card stands out among the others. Just consider both of these points when deciding which direction to choose.)


4. When you are asked for your card, it is polite to ask for theirs. Since we do not want to give our card without being asked, this is one way you can get your card into their hands. Ask for their card. In return, they will ask for yours (…usually. It is standard practice, after all).


5. I am often asked why we have business cards when we can just pull out our phone and enter someone’s information. A business card will always make a better impression than a phone. A card can be designed to represent your uniqueness or professionalism. It can be designed to show the value you add. Your card will also increase the odds that the person will not forget you. Once you become just another contact in their phone, will they remember your name? A card also allows you to write a personal note on the back (if appropriate). A phone, well, is just a phone.


6. As mentioned above, it is sometimes appropriate to write a note on the back of the card you hand to another person. Maybe the two of you talked about the book you just released. They ask for your card so they can make a purchase. You choose to write the title along with a big Thank You. It is another way to make you stand out and remind the person why they now possess your card. The practice of writing on someone else’s card should be limited, though. Depending on what notes you are putting down, you might come across as salesy. (Side note: In some countries, it is considered rude to write on a business card. The card is considered a living representation of that person, and to deface it is viewed as an insult. In the U.S. this is acceptable, but if dealing with a foreign national be aware of this fact.)


7. Present your card with your right hand or both hands. Also receive a card with your right hand or both hands. The right hand is considered the “hand of discretion.” This is more important in other cultures, but it is good practice in the U.S. as well. (This is difficult for me to remember – Left-Handed Lisa Lou!)


8. When handing someone your card, present it where they can read it. Face up and with no fingers covering important information.


9. When receiving a card, read what is printed and make a comment about the card. “I like the weight of this card.” “Your logo is very nice.” Commenting on the card serves the same purpose as giving someone a compliment.


10. Keep your card updated. Crossing out information and adding a handwritten phone number never leaves a good impression. Make sure the style of the graphics on your card are not outdated.


First impressions matter. Another person will form an opinion of you within 2 seconds. This is true whether they meet you or only see you from across a room. Some might say this is superficial, but it is the way our minds work. If you need to purchase a new leather journal, and you see one without scratches and another with scratches, which one will you choose? There is nothing wrong with the scratched book. It was just mishandled in shipping, but you will purchase the one in better shape. If you are house shopping, the home that has curb appeal will stay on your list. The home that is poorly maintained in front will be eliminated. Why? The house may be great on the inside, but poor upkeep on the outside has scared you away. You will make assumptions about all other aspects of the property based on that first impression.


Our business card is no different. It is often the first impression we give someone about ourselves or our business. It is considered an extension of who we are, and if my calling card is going to speak on my behalf, I want it to scream, “Remember me. I am worth it!”


Together with you,

Lisa Lou