young children knows that going out for a family dinner can sometimes be a
get everyone out the door in clean clothes, matching shoes and with decent hair
is challenging enough. Then there’s everything that can go wrong at the
restaurant itself: too much noise, endless chaos, toddler tantrums and
disapproving stares from other diners
doesn’t have to be that way. An enjoyable dinner with the kids is possible,
provided you think ahead, plan carefully and follow a few simple rules.
Kids get restless and, if they’re stuck at a table waiting for food, they’ll be
even more whingey. Make sure you bring colouring paper and pencils, puzzles,
books and child-friendly technology if you think that’s appropriate. Talk
On the other hand, you could leave all technology at home, and think of dinner
as a family affair rather than a night out with your spouse… kids in tow.
Engage your children and get them to join in the conversation. They’ll be less
likely to get bored or use attention-seeking behaviour, they’ll learn how to
eat out respectfully and you’ll all enjoy some important family-bonding time. Skip the Entree
You need to get to the point of the night – food – fairly quickly. Go straight
to mains and request that all meals be served at the same time, along with any
drinks. If you plan to buy the kids dessert, you can time your coffee accordingly.
Although it’s easy to spend an entire night out worrying about mess, decibels
and chaos, if you’ve chosen a suitable restaurant and your kids are reasonably
well-behaved, chances are a little bit of noise or a spilt drink won’t even be
noticed by people around you. So try to relax and, most of all, enjoy time with
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