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Trying to maintain a balance between your first kid and a social life can be difficult, but there are always ways out !!
I have seen parents with week old babies at restaurants and cafes snuggled in their baby carrier, While the mothers sip on to their lattes.Kudos to those mothers who managed to do that !! It took me a while to get used to having a constantly demanding infant with mantaining your sanity in a public place, plus I was breastfeeding exclusively (And we all know about the arrangements available to Breastfeed while out)
The first time I took her out was at a friends Birthday party, and it backfired so badly that I had to return home in 30 mins With too many people around , new faces and music it all got too much for her to handle.
Anyways after like a year of experience with going out to restaurants and malls and cafes, I learned my lesson the hard way. But I am sure there are a lot of you who might be having the same struggle
I’ve curated a list of tips to follow (If u wish to have a peaceful meal)
1.Kid friendly location
Whether it’s a restaurant,coffee shop, marriage to attend or you wanna indulge in some retail therapy, Until your kid gets used to the environment,It is important that you choose a kid friendly place. That would mean No loud music, Smoke free environment, less crowded.Stay away from dim lighted places!! And check before hand about the availability of a high chair.
2.Time it well
Hungry babies are angry babies,If you need a happy baby, time her feeding schedule accordingly! Feed before leaving the house or on your way to the place! To your surprise baby might fall asleep and stay like that throughout the meal.If you have a kid who is on solids, order for a quick thing for them to munch on! The last thing u want to see is a cranky hungry child on the dining table
3.Stock your diaper bag right !
Remember to keep your diaper bag stocked up with things your baby needs! Diapers, wipes,bibs, extra pair of clothing, some toys that fascinate your baby, some munchies,Sippy cup, bottle feed etc.Carry things in the diaper bag that can distract the kid like a few handy colourful books, toys etc.With this you might be lucky enough to reach the dessert too.
4.Choose a corner table
Wait for a table that might be in the corner of the restaurant ! That gets you off the guilt of disturbing other diners if your baby starts fussing plus gives you the privacy to nurse if required
5.Make it quick
Keep your outings to short time.Dont indulge in a 8 course meal. Babies don’t have so much patience.Do not take more than an hour.As the baby grows,they start adapting to the environment and can handle longer amount of time in one place.
Make sure to clear out all the cutlery and any breakables from the table ! Your waiter might unintentionally place the steak knife near the kid!! Take care, nobody has to get hurt.
7.Go during off hours
It’s always good and convenient to visit a restaurant off hours when it’s less crowded.The place won’t be too loud and in case if he is having a meltdown , you’ll have less of an audience to watch.Dining at off hours means quick service and no waiting for the table! If possible make a quick reservation before reaching the place
Ensure your dining times don’t clash with your babies sleeping time! Because obviously a restaurant is not the best place to expect a baby to snuggle and sleep peacefully by itself.
9.If all fails, IPhone
I know a lot of you might give me smirks and eye rolls ! But when we have moved on with the generation in so many things then why not this. You might have your Gadget free rules set for home.But once in a while if it keeps your kid entertained while you enjoy that sizzling Chicken Cheese Steak, I think it’s a good barter.
If your child acts up in the restaurant, calm down !! Find ways to pacify him. Don’t lose your mind. A quick change in the place might calm him down ! You or your husband could take him for a quick walk. Sometimes a simple change of scenery does the trick I have been religiously following these and happily gorging on my Chicken Cheese Steak too. Would love to know from you mommies your tips and tricks Feel free to leave a comment Until next time