Thank You Notes for Summer Weekends

Good morning, all!  Yes, I wish I was on Nantucket right now, too.  Today's Wednesday etiquette post is reaching you on Thursday due to general sleep deprivation and a chronic right-eye twitch.  They told me I'd get tired!  They were right.

Last week, Town and Country Magazine online published the second installment of my column, Thoroughly Modern Manners.  The piece focused on the etiquette surrounding shared bedrooms for unmarried couples while guests on a summer weekend.  It explored the issue as it applies to gay couples, as well, including the social impact of the federal government's denial of marriage equality.  Well, today I'm thrilled to report that the article may eventually need to be revised given that the Supreme Court repealed DOMA yesterday.  A small victory in the big scheme of things (we'll need each state to get on board before marriage equality is a real concept), but an important battle won for modern civil rights.  Go Ginsburg!

Ginsburg: Smart, Fair and Well-Accessorized.  Just how we like 'em.

So, in this week's etiquette column, I thought I'd expand the issue of summer weekend visits.  I've been asked by a few friends when it's appropriate to send along a thank you note after being hosted for the weekend at someone's home.  The answer is: nearly always.  A "bread and butter letter" is a brief thank you letter expressing thanks for hospitality.  It doesn't need to be ground breaking stufff but it should always be sent along to your hosts following your visit.  If you are a semi-regular guest at someone's home (i.e. you and your boyfriend or husband have been frequent crashers at his parents' hamptons house), you don't need to send a note every single time.  You should certainly send a note following your first visit of the season and you might express your thanks thereafter by bringing small tokens of thanks along on your visits (a farmstand cheese, a bottle of wolffer rose, a fresh baked pie).  You should not, however, dictate the plans of your hosts by offering to take them out to dinner.  The well-mannered among us will allow our hosts to direct our activities. Although in this day and age it is probably fine (and much appreciated) to casually offer to take your hosts out for a meal whenever is convenient for them (you might suggest some restaurants, but they should choose).  But in an earlier, much less casual era, it would have been considered offensive to tread upon your hosts' obligation to, well, host.

Looking for some darling thank you notes? 

This Mr. Boddington's number is summery and lovely.

Or head over to Antiquaria and spruce up some Crane's ecruwhite stationery with a monogrammed stamp.  I also think this would look fabulous in a magenta ink on a Robin's egg blue note card.  The Paper Source should be able to provide both.


PS I spoke with my mom this morning who was eager to encourage me to stop citibiking to work and to tell me that we have a family history of punctual babies: right on their due date.  She also mentioned that there are some home-towners following the blog.  Hello, Reddingites!  Hope you're all well and enjoying the shade out in Connecticut!  Keep visiting my mom at the library!