First of all, what is the purpose of reciting for callers the number that they have just called? We don't know in the history of answering machines or voicemail if anyone has ever dialed a number, heard the number and said, "Oops, that doesn't sound like the number I wanted. Let me go back and check it." What's wrong with a pleasant "Hello"? What about stating your name?
As for saying that you're sorry you can't take the call - are you really that sorry with so much to be really sorry about? Don't be sorry, be brief. Blessings are thoughtful but they seem so personal and when you hear the same blessing again and again it kind of loses its blessedness.
Yvette has an answering machine. I have voicemail. Nothing is more annoying when someone calls and assumes that I can hear them. “Hello, hello, are you there?” What are they thinking? I’m standing their making faces?
And a word to parents who think it's really cute to let their children record a message - this is very annoying. And it is time consuming especially when the little one has a limited vocabulary and substitutes words with cooing. Why let two legged, phone calling vermin perverts know that small children are in the house? Buy your child a toy telephone and play telephone with him or her. This could be a great way to teach them telephone etiquette.
Let us know if you got our message.