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facebook…welcome to my cyber sofa

After graduating from college, establishing a career, and starting a family, I often wondered what had happened to certain acquaintances. You tend to keep in touch with close friends and relatives. But often people you truly appreciate and enjoy slip away from your life almost unnoticed. I remember wishing I had a magical book that would allow me to catch up with their lives. Then came….do I have to say its name? Facebook.

People approach social media from different perspectives based on age, gender, culture, purpose, and availability of time. With FB in particular, there is also the desire for connection with the past and future.

Some people are afraid of it. One relative told me, “Oh, I’m not going near FB, it gets you in too much trouble!” This illustrates the idea that it takes away your control of your own information, and to a certain degree I guess that’s true.

I look at FB as my living room on the internet. It’s my choice to invite people in and to treat them appropriately as guests. If someone is rude, hurtful, or hateful they are not invited back. I chose what information to put out there about myself. I don’t appreciate others supplying information about me via FB. It’s too easy to misinterpret details or get them wrong. By the same token, if you’re not ready to go public about something, don’t put it on FB. You can’t expect the receiver to understand the information is a secret. It’s just not realistic and you have no one to blame but yourself. There are plenty of avenues for the exchange of private or sensitive information, including messaging and private groups.

Here are my basic rules:

f Don’t say anything to me on Facebook you wouldn’t say to me in my own home as an invited guest.

f Don’t come behind my comments on someone else’s page with nasty remarks.

f Don’t criticize me or anyone else on my page. While I like a healthy exchange of ideas, FB is not my preferred vehicle for heated discussion.

f Don’t friend me for the sole purpose of selling me something. I understand FB is a great marketing tool—I use it to push out this blog (which is not monetized.) But when it becomes painfully evident a request has nothing to do with me as a person and everything to do with me as a potential customer, its hurtful.

f Politics and politicians are fair game. But their supporters and detractors are not. Please don’t call someone an idiot because they support a certain candidate, party, or policy. They may indeed BE an idiot. But it’s just not a nice thing to say to a guest sitting on my cyber sofa.

f Please don’t badger me about my use of social media. I may not use it to the extent that you do and that’s OK. There have been many occasions when someone in real time will demand, “Didn’t you see my post?!”

f By the same token, don’t feel the need to apologize to me for not engaging with me on social media. I understand that some people enjoy my blog and others don’t. One woman said to me, “I only scan blogs looking for recipes. I’m not interested in the writing.” And that’s OK.

All in all, FB has enhanced my life. It put me back in touch with some great people, helped me plan events, and provided some amazing information and entertainment. So bring on the babies, the vacation pics, the cat videos, the dog videos, the funny videos, the profound posters, the job updates, the health concerns, and the DIY projects!

Thank you for visiting.

Best practices for houseguesters.

Best practices for houseguesters.

Everyone has their own sensibilities, and no one can read minds. These two elements of human nature can set you up for uncomfortable situations when it comes to houseguests. Here are some best practices that apply to just about anyone…I think. I sincerely welcome your remarks and additions. Leave a comment below or send me an email at

For the Host

  • Your ultimate responsibility is to the safety and wellbeing of the family and household you have created. This doesn’t mean you can’t be gracious.
  • Be mindful of your guest’s resources.
  • Give your guest downtime and respect their privacy.
  • Be interested and be interesting.
  • Be appreciative that your houseguest values your company enough to stay in your home.
  • If you are not enjoying the visit, fake it!


For the Houseguest

  • Show up.
  • Respect your host’s schedule and resources.
  • If you are staying more than two nights, provide a meal.
  • Give your host downtime and privacy.
  • Offer, but do not insist, on helping with household chores such as meal prep and clean up.
  • Don’t offer unsolicited decorating or cooking advice.
  • Be interested and be interesting.
  • Be openly appreciative.
  • No whining unless it comes in a bottle.
  • If you’re not enjoying the visit, fake it!


In my next posts, I’ll go into more detail about these best practices and will have other topics as well including; host/hostess gifts, houseguesting with children, houseguesting with pets, meals/food, what to have on hand, and electronic etiquette. I’ve decided to turn houseguesting into a verb.

Thanks for visiting,

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