A fun look into the lives and lifestyles of some of our favorite mamas.
Manners and etiquette for children are some of the most important qualities to teach and nurture in the family home. This month I had the pleasure of interviewing Bren Underwood, Mama to Charlie and George, who runs a lifestyle and etiquette blog called MustBringBuns, http://mustbringbuns.com/ to hear how she fosters manners in her boys.
By Catherine Hill
Being the etiquette guru what are your best tips for teaching kids manners?
The best way to teach children about manners is to lead by example. If you want your little ones to be kind, gracious, and courteous, then you need to be kind, gracious, and courteous. It can be as simple as teaching them to say please and thank you, have empathy for others, and use basic table manners. Remember to be patient and consistent!
Any advice on how to break bad manners?
Use bad manners as a teachable moment and be positive! If your child demands a glass of milk, remind them that instead of demanding, we nicely say, “May I please have” when asking for something.
What is one of your proudest mom "manner" moments so far?
At our goddaughter’s baptism, her parents served a gorgeous cake for dessert and of course Charlie enjoyed a piece. When he finished eating, he placed his fork on his plate, and said to the waiter, “Excuse me, I’m all done. Thank you!” – he was so proud of himself for saying “excuse me” and “thank you” and using proper table manners, and we were very proud of him as well!
Did your mom place lots of importance on manners when you were growing up?
Oh yes. My mom always encouraged us to say please and thank you, write hand written thank you notes, have proper table manners and so on. She has beautiful manners, and led by example.
What do you admire most about your mom?
I admire so many things about my mom, especially her work ethic. She’s started her own interior design firm when she was in her 20’s, and today is known as one of the most renowned designers with high-end residential projects from coast to coast. I have so many fond childhood memories of us drawing at her drafting table, or excitedly joining her for a sneak peak of an installation. Her talent is unmatched, and coupled with her dedication, she taught us the true meaning of hard work.
How does it make you feel to know that when you buy Dondolo clothing you are providing jobs for single mothers in Colombia?
Inspired – I think it’s wonderful that Dondolo is providing jobs for these mothers so they in turn can provide for their families. I was raised by a single mother, and so I have great admiration and compassion for these incredible women.
How would you best describe how you dress Charlie and George?
Traditional. I love to dress them sweet because they are only little once!
What is your favorite Dondolo outfit and why?
I love every piece they make! I recently purchased the pumpkin bubble for George to wear this fall. It’s too cute for words!
What is one thing you hope to teach Charlie and George?
I hope to teach them genuine kindness. You never know what sort of day someone is having, and even the smallest acts of kindness can add a little sunshine to another person’s life. And to be confident – I want them to have the confidence to follow their dreams, big and small.