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What’s that old phrase?

Dear Annie: People who complain about giving gifts and not getting one in return should remember an old saying: If you are giving something and expecting something in return, then it is not giving; it is business. — Good Ol’ Saying

Dear Good Ol’ Saying: May our readers find the pleasure in giving to others without expecting something in return. That good feeling in and of itself is a gift.

Dear Annie: Can you stand one more letter about guests helping with the cleanup after a meal? I do appreciate the offer of assistance, but I have my own efficient method for cleaning up after a meal in my small kitchen.

Guests who insist on helping by clearing the table and putting things wherever there’s a bare spot on the counter only complicate and prolong the process.

I have one friend who totally gets my system, and I have no problem with her jumping in, but everyone else makes it more chaotic.

So, dear guests, your sincere offers to help will always be appropriate and appreciated, but please be gracious enough to respect your host’s response if they ask you to relax and let them handle it. — Kitchen Cleanup

Dear Kitchen Cleanup: You sound like a great host. All that your guests have to do is to enjoy themselves and relax.

I’m glad that you acknowledged and appreciated their offer to help, but you were clear that you do not need their help and just want them to relax. What a lovely evening.

(Send your questions for Annie Lane to dearannie@creators.com. This column is syndicated by Creators Syndicate columnists. Visit the website at www.creators.com.)

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