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Today, where we see every form of fashion on our streets, the question of men and shorts still produces uncertainty among many. There is a reason for this that is embedded in our DNA, and to fully understand we need to explore a little history.

“What are the main table manners children should know?” A common question I am frequently asked. Yet I have a tough time narrowing my answer. I pick my top three, then a fourth pops into my mind. Then a fifth. We may not all attend black-tie events, but we do all eat. Your children will one day be placed in a situation where they need to skillfully know their way around a dining table.

As we approach Mother’s Day, I would like to take a special look at the precious women in our lives that hold the title of Mother-in-law. Do you remember the movie Monster-in-Law? It starred Jennifer Lopez and Jane Fonda in a romantic comedy centered around the tumultuous relationship between a bride and her future mother-in-law. If you have not seen it, you should. It will keep you laughing but, sadly, may hit closer to home than you would like to admit.

I recently asked a group of college students these questions showing them the same photos. I had them shout out adjectives for the pictures they were viewing. For the home I heard: beautiful; wealthy; cared for; loving family; a place I want to live. For the broken-down home they said: old; no curb appeal; I wouldn’t go near it; scary; unstable.

“Rules without reason equals rebellion.” -Cynthia Grosso, Charleston School of Protocol. This could be my motto! I have a stubborn streak that can serve me well, but when it gets me into trouble, I just blame it on my DNA. No matter the reason, I am not the best rule follower unless I know why a rule was created. 

Remove your hat! Don’t set it on the table! Never let someone see the lining! Women, keep your hat on! Women, take your hat off! Ahhh…..I’m so confused!!! The old rules of hat etiquette were so straight forward, and everyone knew what to do. A gentleman removing his hat inside a building was as second nature as brushing his teeth. In today’s changing society, there is much confusion about hat etiquette, for both men and women, so let’s solve this mystery by starting with the “why” of hat protocol.

Do you find your spouse often saying, “Are you listening to me?” Or maybe you feel your child is not being an active part of the dinner conversation. If this resonates with you, it might be time to brush up on the finer points of being a good listener, while teaching your family to do the same. Below are 11 tips to help you get back on track so you can start enjoying deeper and more meaningful communication with those you love.

“Good sense makes one slow to anger, and it is his glory to overlook an offense.” (Proverbs 19:11 ESV).

 

When I am tired and my mind does not seem to focus on a deep study of the Bible, I will flip to Proverbs to keep focused on God’s Word in a more simplistic way. Yet, every time I read this book, I walk away amazed at the power it brings and thankful for the renewal I feel. The verse I read today really resonated with me.

As a stay-at-home mom to 2 toddlers, a large part of my day is spent in the kitchen preparing food. Meal planning at the beginning of the week is essential to ensuring my family is well fed with home cooked nutrition (I give myself a break on the weekends)! If you get overwhelmed with meal planning like I used to, try these tips to sooth your soul:

As a wife and mother of two rambunctious toddlers, it is a challenge to get a home-cooked dinner on the table at a reasonable time. Pulling the children away from their toys, getting them seated at the table, cutting up their meal, blowing on food that is too hot, and calling my husband away from his work can be exhausting.

Sometimes you just need to re-post tips that were great to read. I find myself saying this quite often when it comes to The Gottman Institute. They are some of the leading relationship experts in our country, and the research they did on trustworthiness is very informative.

Meeting friends for dinner after work, grabbing coffee with your girlfriend or just ordering pizza on a Friday night with neighbors. We all have a deep desire to be connected in a world that often forgets the importance of relationships. Many of us have the desire to entertain, but we let our circumstances keep us from extending hospitality. Often it revolves around our lack of confidence in our ability to host events. I get this!

A perfect entertaining year for me would be hosting a different themed party each month! Will I do that? No. Will I dream about it? Yes! If I cannot have a party every 4 weeks, I can at least help my Lisa Lou family with ideas so hopefully a few of you can carry the torch of hospitality for the rest of us.

You are not allowed to complain about not getting something that you never asked for. Read that again.

You are not allowed to complain about not getting something that you never asked for.

You are not allowed to complain about not getting something that you never asked for. Read that again.

You are not allowed to complain about not getting something that you never asked for.

  • Lisa Lou

Make an Entrance with Confidence

Updated: Dec 2, 2020


Have you ever seen someone walk into a party that looked scared to death, unsure of themselves, and then watched them slink off to an obscure corner? Their body language screaming, “I wish I was anywhere but here!”


Entering a room full of people that you do not know can be intimidating. I get that. Yet, your entrance is important in displaying overall confidence and portraying a strong image. At a party or business event, guests tend to keep their eye on the area where others enter. Hoping you will not be seen is pointless. Instead, embrace the fact that others will spot you, and remember first impressions are formed within 2 seconds, even from across the room. You have the power to control the message you send by the body language you display. Learn the right way to make an entrance and leave your uncertainty behind!

1. Make sure your attire fits the party. If you feel good about what you are wearing, your confidence level will increase.


2. Be on time (or within that 15-minute window I talk about). The biggest way to draw unwanted attention to yourself is to arrive late.


3. Before you enter the room stop for a moment. Take a deep breath, correct your posture, stand up tall and relax. Use this time to remind yourself why you are attending this event. Is it for networking? Is it for social reasons? Knowing the “why” can help put your mind at ease.


4. Put a smile on your face when you walk into the room, and let others see that you are happy to be there.


5. Do not rush into the room. Walk calmly but with a purpose. People will be able to read your body language and know if you are anxious. Even if you feel fluttery on the inside, you can display confidence on the outside by the way you carry yourself.


6. If I am nervous when entering a room, I do some self talking. I have a daily personal goal to try to make someone else’s life a little brighter. I remind myself of this before entering a room, and it calms my nerves as I re-focus on my mission.


7. Soldiers are taught to recon a room immediately upon entering. This is great advice for the civilian world, too. After walking into the room, immediately pause. Look around the room. Find your hostess. Find the bar. Find the buffet. Determine where different groups of people are gathered. Is there someone you hope to network with? If so, locate them. Rushing into a room and grabbing the first person you know to talk to is usually a reaction to feeling insecure or nervous. Just slow down, take a deep breath and survey your surroundings.


8. After you have surveyed the room, greet the host and hostess. Then head to the bar for a drink. With beverage in hand find a group you wish to speak with. My personal philosophy is to approach a person or couple standing by themselves in a corner. They become my first “mission.” I think of this as my way of rescuing them from the uncertainty they are obviously feeling!


9. When determining who to speak with, approach a single person (or single couple) or a group of 3 or more. If you see just two people conversing do not interrupt. They may be in the middle of an important or private conversation.


Master the art of the entrance. Walk into a room with shoulders back and a smile on your face. You will make a first impression that says, “I’m the friendly guest everyone wants to talk to!”


Together with you,

Lisa Lou