Few things intimidate a parent like taking two toddlers out to eat. We live in the suburbs of Virginia where restaurants aren’t in walking distance so even though we don’t eat out all that often, every mom needs to have some tips and tricks up her sleeve for those days where cooking, take-out and delivery won’t cut it. When we were in Italy this summer, we spent at least one meal a day at a restaurant and I learned some things that have taken the cringe factor out of dining-out with these babes.
1. Bring a few toys. Having Oshiolema choose a toy for the drive and restaurant has been a game changer. While he won’t have a tantrum at the table, he will be tempted to dump the entire salt shaker on his plate and dump every packet of sugar onto the table. Packing a little car, a small book or a superhero makes all the difference. I’m currently doing a happy dance since I’m out of the diaper bag phase and am finally able to wear my purses again (Armed with a couple diapers for K and a travel pack of wipes, of course) so bonus points for packing his toys in his own backpack- it makes him feel all kinds of responsible.
The obvious tip that’s missing from this list is to bring an iPhone or an iPad, but to be honest at this point we avoid it. Once that world is opened up I know there will be no stopping it and while i’m sure the more kids we have, the more we’ll need those things- for now, we don’t do screens aside from the TV after breakfast and movies on the weekends.
I’d love to hear any tips you have for taking your littles out to eat! Not going to lie, there was a time during our two weeks in Italy with a 2 year old and 10 month old that I’d rather eat dry cereal from a box then take them out to eat again. It was a rough age combination and the volume my daughter can reach between bites is just superhuman. If you’re in a rough age combination too, hopefully these tips help. We’re all in this together!
all photos in the post are by my incredibly talented sister Jaclyn Michelle Photography.