Since our party size has increased from two to three, going out for meals is much tougher than it used to be. It would be so much easier if restaurants had a sign on the front door that indicated whether or not they are “baby friendly”. One of the main requirements we have for going out with our one year old is the restaurant has to be on the louder side (which doesn’t always make for a relaxing type of evening).
I have been lucky so far, my son is very well behaved when we go out. My husband and I have a good system, once we are seated I immediately start disinfecting the table and high chair. I then gauge whether baby is hungry or if he just wants to play. My diaper bag is always filled with a variety of toys, finger foods and things to keep him occupied. When our meals arrive, I typically entertain baby while my husband guzzles down his food. Don’t feel bad for him though, he has always been a fast eater so nothing has really changed.
Living in the land of Mickey Mouse, we’re fortunate to have tons of kid friendly places to choose from. Disney is always an option, but even that gets old after awhile. We feel comfortable dining at Chevys Fresh Mex because the service is fast and it is a very loud restaurant. Their margaritas are a nice way to get through a meal with a toddler, they help me to relax and stop wondering if an outburst will occur.
A few other locations we feel comfortable taking our son to are Benihana, TooJays, Yellow Dog Eats and Cracker Barrel. If the Florida weather is not miserable, we opt for outdoor seating so we do not disturb others. We have also come to know take-out very well.
Parents.com lists the 10 Best Family Restaurants but to be honest, I have only heard of half of them. It seems that most chain restaurants are definitely family friendly, so anyone should feel comfortable dining there.
What are your favorite family friendly restaurants? Have you ever dined somewhere with a child and felt out of place? Have you ever been turned away or asked to leave a restaurant?
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