Manners are extremely important to me. Not just the please and thank yous but the "Yes M'am" and "No Sir" to a child's elders or holding the door open for someone, especially a lady and especially an elderly person.
Now I can't be responsible for everyone else's children but I am going to be responsible for mine and I will be eternally grateful if on my tombstone it reads...
Beloved wife and mother.
She loved us lots and taught her boys manners.
That might sound a little warped and perhaps it's a discussion for a post for another day but back to the business at hand.
While I can appreciate the gesture, one of my largest challenges in teaching manners in a real world environment is the response of other adults. If I see one of the boys do something (i.e. cut in front of someone at a buffet) I make it a point to tell them that they need to apologize to the person and step back. 9 times out of 10, when they go to apologize, the adult responds "That's ok." But it's not ok. It's not ok for my kids to think that they can cut in front of someone or that they can reach over you to grab the bread from the bread basket. It's not ok for kids to be so focused on themselves that they don't recognize and acknowledge what is going on around them. They turn into adults who do the same thing and once this happens, we've just added another "self absorbed, all about me" individual to the human race and really, don't we have enough of them already?
I can appreciate that the adult's intentions are well meaning, but if by chance one of my kids missteps and comes back to apologize, can you do me a favor and simply say "Thank you for apologizing, I appreciate that you realized your error". I know I would certainly appreciate it and you would be doing a mother a big favor.