We love the Mexican restaurant in our hood. The food is decent, the service is good and it is ridiculously kid-friendly. (I can’t use the word ridiculous anymore without thinking of my brother who suddenly started saying, “It was so diculous, it was RI-diculous.” Cracks me up in an I-must-have-been-a-14-year-old-boy-in-another-life sort of way)
We often leave our table with a 3-foot blast radius of red rice and pinto beans and they still act like we’re their best friends (and this doesn’t include the mess Dan and I make, although most of mine usually lands on my convenient nursing shelf).
“NiÃ±a!” they shout as Laylee walks through the door. Throughout the meal she is repeatedly rubbed on the head, grinned at and called NiÃ±a. (That is not her name, but we don’t want to make them feel bad.)
Some restaurants are not so good on the kid-friendliness. I love it when an 11-year-old heavily pierced waitress hands Magoo a box of crayons (for food?) and brings Laylee one of those tiny wooden highchairs. Technically, I’m sure I could squeeze her patoot into the 10 inch opening but then “technically” she would go mental and clear out the joint. So, we graciously decline the offer. She’s a BIGIRL! Do you hear me?
My main tip for maintaining sanity while dining out with kids is – SPOONS.
Yes, mi amigos. We ask for a large order of spoons with our drink order. We hand one to Magoo. He sucks on it until he gags himself and then throws it overboard. 2 seconds later, we hand him a clean one. The sucking, the gagging, the tossing. Periodically, he bangs it charmingly on the table. Everyone at the surrounding tables loves that trick. It is a fabulous game that has gotten us through many meals without baby mind-lossage.
I’m sure you all have good suggestions, maybe even as good as SPOONS (although I’m skeptical) that will work to occupy a baby during dinner. But how about older kids? What’s your plan? How is it executed? I want to see blueprints.
This Tip Tuesday suggestion is brought to you by Karen.