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Talk with your mouth closed, young lady! Oh, wait.



Are your table manners up to snuff? Do you chew with your mouth closed? Dine with your napkin in your lap?


Get your mealtime behavior in check with Golly Gee-pers Table Manners Card Games, a new invention from stay-at-home mom and Cal Poly graduate Staci Ericson (Disclosure: Ericson is this writer’s second cousin.)

Looking for a friendly and respectful way to teach table manners to her daughter, Ericson developed a set of 14 illustrated cards depicting good and bad table manners with either a thumbs-up or thumbs-down.

It all began several years ago when she was picking up her daughter from a sleepover.

“I asked if she had behaved,” Ericson writes. “The father replied, ‘Yes, but she chews her food like a horse!’ He demonstrated this with wide-mouthed chomping followed by a kind chuckle. I knew this family well, so I was not offended. However, I did realize something had to be done.”

Ericson went home, sketched out a few playful drawings with captions and thumbs-up or thumbs-down illustrations, and a game was born.

Players compete for thumbs-up cards and try to avoid thumbs-down ones. While common no-nos like putting one’s elbow on the table and slouching are addressed, the set also includes four blank cards for those more imaginative misdeeds not included in the set.

Of course, the holy grail of the game is the coveted Ready to Dine Out card.

Ericson’s simple invention was recently named one of the 10 Best Socially Responsible Products for Children by Stevanne Auerbach, PhD, a leading expert on toys and children’s products, and placed among the Top 100 Best New Children’s Products for Children.

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