Monday Manners: Ugly Babies

“baby553” from Paul Grand (flickr)

As we leave the subject of engagements and weddings, a post on the etiquette event most likely to follow a wedding: responding to a birth announcement. (This is one of my favorite excerpts from the Book of Etiquette, for the third-to-last sentence.)

Friends of the parents will, of course, hasten to congratulate them upon their good fortune. They may send flowers, magazines, jellies, etc., to the mother and to the youngster some little article pleasing because of its beauty or its utility. Gifts are not necessary, however, and a warm and sincere note expressing one’s happiness at the good fortune of the parents is quite sufficient. The note must not be perfunctory. You must remember that the child of your friend is the most wonderful infant that ever came to earth to live (and if your private opinion is to the contrary it is best to keep it private), and that conventional phrases are entirely inadequate. On the other hand it will not do to gush. Simplicity and sincerity are the best means to attain the end desired.

I have to say: jellies? Really?

Maternal readers, what would you think of getting a jar of jelly for a present?

Couldn’t resist one more vintage baby picture. There are so many out there!
“Bjorn” from *Kicki* (Flickr)

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