Ms. Civilized

My latest picture book, NO SLURPING, NO BURPING: A Tale of Table Manners, deals with the basic rules of dining with others.

Personally, I don’t care what fork you use, whether or not you extend your pinky when your sip your tea, or if you can fold a napkin into a swan. What I do care about is that we all need to be kind to and respectful of one another, and be grateful to those who feed us and serve us, whether we’re at home or out in the world. I hope that my book can teach kids (of all ages!) how to behave when they’re sharing a meal with those they love.

But I’d like to think I can do more. Maybe it’s because I have a child of my own now, but lately, I feel as if I have an obligation to try a little bit harder to be a good person. To that end, I’ve created a Tumblr account called Ms. Civilized, where I’ll share my thoughts about manners and courtesy, and share some of my favorite images, quotes, and helpful hints on how to move through life with grace. I hope you’ll visit and even spread the word.

Civility is all about being our very best selves, and I think we owe it to each other to strive in whatever ways we can. Even if it just means saying “excuse me” when we squeeze past someone in the grocery store, or looking behind ourselves when we walk through a door to see if we need to hold it for someone else, or taking time at the end of the day to say “thank you” to those who care for us. These little things add up — they add up to a civilized society, and in my opinion, a finer world.

I hope you’ll join me in this effort. We’re all on this journey together. Why not take the high road?

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