Yesterday we enjoyed a meal out with our kids. If ‘enjoyed’ means going to the toilet 14 times and eating your dinner off your lap.
Why we risk it.
Having kids has never put us off going out to eat.
Because we like eating.
We like someone else doing the cooking.
And, because we are idiots.
Low battery. (Arggghhhh!)
Daddy Pig isn’t a fan of iPads at the dinner table.
So instead we do stuff like draw. On the table. Shuffle cutlery around, so no one stabs themselves. And play the, ‘Don’t do that,’ game.
Before relenting and handing over an iPhone so the kids can watch Netflix. Whilst praying that the 20% battery lasts long enough for us to scoff a starter, main course and dessert.
3 courses? I told you we are idiots.
It just gets better and better.
Since toilet training Godivy, and The Boy with No Name joined us, eating out has become even more exciting.
Not only do we now get to go to the toilet twice as much (an average of 14 times in one sitting), but we also get to do really crazy stuff like eat off our laps.
Because the table is too blooming small, the plate is too fashionably big and The Boy with No Name grabs EVERYTHING.
Come Dine With Us.
Sometimes we eat out with other human beings. Without kids. Just for an additional form of amusement.
They try to talk to us. But eventually give up. Because it’s really unrewarding starting the same conversation 45 times and getting nonsensical replies like, ‘Shall I cut that up for you?’ and ‘Blow that, because it’s really hot.’
The worst bit? We’ve given up even trying to excuse our rudeness.
Because these days? This is just how we roll.
(And we’re just too damn tired.)
‘Please leave the building.’
Somewhere during the middle of dessert, the world will end.
The kids will suddenly get tired. In that frantic, hyperactive way that means they are liable to start screaming, tantruming and generally abusing other diners.
This is when we exit. Quickly.
All parents have this down to a fine art. One parent pays the bill with a child under their arm. Whilst the other gathers all the many, many possessions strewn under the table (including the baby) and grabs any remaining children.
We can be out of a restaurant in under 60 seconds.
When we get home two things happen.
We realise we have no idea what we actually ate. Did we even eat? We have no flipping idea.
And we can barely move, so completely and utterly exhausted are we from all the fabulous toilet visits.
But, hey, look on the bright side.
At least we didn’t have to cook.
(HA HA HA HA HA).
Surviving Motherhood Tip #17 – How to survive eating out with kids
1. Take an iPad for each child. Also chargers, back up batteries. And a generator. Just in case.
2. Take a potty. It will save you getting up from the table 14 times. Other diners may frown upon this. But that’s their problem, right?
3. Order as soon as you get there. Browse the menu before you go. Pre-order if you really want to be ahead of the game. ‘Time is money,’ or something like that. The minute you sit down the clock is ticking. And you ain’t got long.
4. Make a mental note of all the available exits. This will save you valuable seconds later, when it’s all kicking off.
5. Don’t forget to pay the bill. No matter how desperately you need to leave, theft is theft. Although a night in a cell on your own? Might be quite appealing…