As a guest, do I toast the hostess and host on behalf of our side of the family? We’re having a holiday dinner at the home of our daughter-in-law’s parents for the first time. I don’t know what’s expected.
Does it matter whether my wife gives the host or do I have to? Public speaking is not my thing and under pressure I’m apt to stutter.
–JW, Providence, RI
- Make your toast as brief as possible.
- Only a sentence or two is needed at a holiday dinner.
- Rehearse your two or three sentences in the mirror ahead of time.
- Make eye contact with those assembled but certainly don’t stare at the same the person the whole time.
- Handle nerves and don’t fiddle with the hand that isn’t holding your glass.
- You don’t have to be a storyteller. Give a natural toast that sounds as though you sincerely appreciate spending time with all who have come together to celebrate…
- The important thing about giving a toast is to look at her or him to reply in gratitude.
If you’re the guest of honor, you could give the first toast.
When there isn’t a guest of honor — such as the birthday boy — usually the host gives a welcoming toast.
Following the welcoming toast any guest can gently tap their glass, stand, and briefly express their appreciation to the host or hosts.
Hold the glass by the stem
while you make your toast.
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Accepting A Compliment