Gone are the days of enjoying a three-course meal while the baby slept peacefully the pushchair, she is now a fully fledged toddler
When we were pregnant with Pollyanna we swore to each other we wouldn’t let it change our life drastically in terms of still doing things we love. One of which was eating out every weekend.
Every weekend we would find a pub hidden in the countryside and spend the day indulging in
Weekends have changed a little, we visit places that are more child-friendly, places with soft play but we have also visited some of London’s finest restaurants including Michelin star ones with Pollyanna in toe.
At four months old, in Marrakech, Pollyanna slept through dinner which hosted a fire show, drummers and belly dancers now at 15 months old we have to be more
This isn’t tips for taking your toddler to posh places because even if you’re at a restaurant with a play area, you still have to be ready for what happens when you’re sat at any dinner table.
We always take
USE YOUR SURROUNDINGS
For the times you have forgotten the snacks – trust me you will. Use what the table has to offer. Sometimes if there are sachets of salt and pepper, I will pour them onto the table and Pollyanna will put them back one by one and this will work quite a few times before she gets bored.
CRAYON + PAPER
Pollyanna is obsessed with drawing, as soon as she sees a pen/pencil she will make it clear to us she needs paper pronto.
If you don’t have it on you ask the restaurant for some paper and a pen. Draw round their hands and get them to do it back to you.
I always have two of Pollyanna’s favourite books in the baby bag. I won’t just read them to her I will talk through each page. I will ask her where things are and get her to point them out. Animal books are great because you can get them to sound out the animal.
DON’T BE AFRAID TO USE THE PHONE
We don’t tend to do this one because the above works well for us (at the moment) but I have some of Pollyanna’s favourite TV shows downloaded on my phone for emergencies.
I am sure people around you would rather you get the phone out (volume down low) than have a toddler screaming and crying next to them. At the end of the day eating out is the adult’s pleasure, not the toddler’s.
I do however use this option to scroll through my photos and videos showing Pollyanna. Pollyanna loves seeing them and this made her fall asleep while we were on a plane a few months ago.