Make sure to arrive at your destination before your child’s normal dinner time. Any delays in service can cause your child to become irritable because of hunger. If you allow for time to sit and wait for an appetizer to come before your child reaches the “starvation” point, you probably will avoid them getting impatient because of hunger.
Having something to keep your child occupied is a tool that all parents should have when they venture out to a restaurant with young children. Never rely on a family style restaurant to have crayons and paper. Bring your own entertainment for your child. A coloring book with their favorite characters and a small box of crayons or even a small notebook with crayons can help to keep them distracted while they wait for their meal to arrive. Meanwhile, maybe you can get in some adult conversation.
Be respectful of other restaurant patrons by choosing your restaurant carefully. Some restaurants may not be used to accommodating young children and may not have the proper highchairs or booster seats. Some adult restaurants may be louder than other restaurants and that might make a younger child uncomfortable. Be careful of going to a restaurant that is more child-themed because that can work against you also. There may be too much commotion going on and your child may not want to behave if they see other children running around. Finding a family-friendly restaurant that is welcoming to children but where children are not allowed to run freely is a better choice.
Taking the family out to eat is a perfect opportunity to teach table manners and how to act while out in public. This is part of the reason why it is important to choose your destination carefully. A family restaurant where the noise level is not too high and there is order is a great place to be able to enjoy a meal together.
Even though It can be expensive to go out to eat together as a family, try to make it a special routine. Depending on your budget, maybe once every 6 weeks or so. Going out to eat teaches a child how to behave in public, gets them used to the idea of eating foods they might not normally eat at home and also helps them to learn self-control.
Use these helpful tips and a family night out for dinner will be an enjoyable experience.