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You love your kids of course, but wouldn't it be great if they'd occasionally sit still long enough for you to make it through a meal? Yes. Yes it would. Even better if you could take them out of the house for a meal and actually enjoy it.
There are a few little tweaks you can make to your dining-out routine that can help optimise your success rate and ensure your whole family enjoys their special treat.
1. Pick a kid-friendly place
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Don't make things harder for yourself. Increase your chances of a delightful meal with the kids by taking them somewhere with a casual, family-friendly atmosphere. If you're not sure if the place you're going welcomes children, save yourself the hassle later and simply call ahead to ask.
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2. Make sure there are kids meals
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On that note, you want to make sure there'll be something for the kids to eat and drink — like free babycinos with any purchase from
The Coffee Club. You definitely won't get any peace and quiet to eat your own food if they don't want any of the dishes on the menu. Kid menus also tend to be a bit cheaper, so that's an added bonus.
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3. Embrace being early birds
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As you know, your best shot at avoiding a tantrum is avoiding a tired child. The same principle applies when you want to go out for a meal. A post-nap lunch can be perfect, and if it's dinner make sure you get there nice and early to avoid crowds and bedtime.
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4. Bring your own distractions
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I've watched this trick save the day with kids at restaurants so many times it's insane. Always bring your own toys, crayons and similar table-friendly distractions for when the kids start to grumble. Or pick somewhere like The Coffee Club that have kid's packs. You'll get so much longer to finish enjoying your food or coffee.
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5. Find a tucked away table
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Sometimes being the centre of attention just isn't what you want. Try to grab a table in the corner or tucked away a little so that if there are any mishaps you can deal with them without feeling like the whole cafe is staring at you.
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6. Always have an escape plan
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Despite your best laid plans as a parent, somedays it's just not going to happen. If tantrums just can't be averted, be prepared to wrap it up. Luckily, you chose a kid-friendly restaurant and they'll be more than happy to pack up your remaining food or drinks to go.
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