Kids in restaurants: Things to consider
There is no denying that it can get really messy with kids in restaurants. But school's out, you are thinking of bringing your kid for a meal at a restaurant? Here are some important points to note before taking your child out to eat.
Eating out can be nightmare for young inexperienced parents, but that is not to stay that seasoned parents have it any better. The only difference is that seasoned parents are able to learn from their mistakes, thus have a better time when eating out with kids.
Planning is the key to having a pleasant night out with your kids. The following tips might be helpful, but if all else fails; there is still the baby-sitter or grandma option to fall back on:
Bear these rules in mind when you have kids in restaurants:
- One of the main reasons for an unpleasant dining out experience with your little darling is the different environment. The home setting would be calmer, less noisy and less distractive. Therefore, in trying to avoid chaos and noise, picking a suitable time and day would be your priority when eating out with kids. Besides, who says you should only go out on weekends, when weekday dining out can be just as pleasant. The staff at the restaurant will be less harassed and certainly more willing to make some allowances, and if you are lucky even play “entertainer” for you little cutie.
- Always pack a kiddie snack. These will come in handy, as hungry kids are usually restless and vocal. This will also help to cut down on the need to order too many things. It will certainly keep your kids busy while you have a pleasant entrée.
- Taking along a favorite toy or some crayons and paper is also another way to occupy your child, while waiting for the meal to be served. Occupied children are less likely to become fussy and difficult, while everyone is seated and waiting for the meal to be served. This will also ensure your kids are seated and not running around causing mayhem.
- Pick restaurants that are child friendly. Most restaurants today are designed to provide distractions and suitable food choices for kids. This will certainly be helpful when you want to enjoy an evening out, eating something other than fast food.
- If the restaurant has various different seating style options, always choose booths. With kids in restaurants, this is ideal to keep your child confined and can be interesting for your child when he/she peeks over the top to have a look around.
- Be realistic with your expectations for the night out. Understand that little kids do not act as they should, and learning to take it in stride is very important. Loosing your cool and making a scene will not only be unpleasant for your family, it will also make you look like a lunatic to others at the restaurant.
- Trying new restaurant is fun, especially if you are adventurous about your palate choice, but doing so with a child in tow is not advisable. Children are usually fussy eaters and introducing something new to them outside the confines of your home is not wise. Bad reactions to the food might cause the entire evening to be over before it even began.
In the end all you want is to have a pleasant dining time out, like other civilized adults, and after a few trial runs and learning curves, you will eventually get the hang of things. Good luck with your kids in restaurants!
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Republished with permission from: theAsianParent Singapore