Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Dining Out with Kids

I didn't really plan on posting two posts today but I found myself with extra time! Ha...that never happens.Anyway....

In the blogosphere a really hot topic about kids and restaurants is going on right now. The question is do restaurants need to ban children under a certain age or should parents get to take their kids to any restaurant they choose. On cnn.com I found an article kind of about the same topic.

 This article I found is about how to make kids more restaurant friendly. One important thing from this article is that it all starts at home. Children need routine meal times. If they have dinner around the same time every night, then won't throw such fits as to being hungry. If you've ever dealt with a hungry child you know how terrible hungry fits are. Let them help in some kind of way. Older kids can bring the food to the table or transfer it from a pan to a bowl with some guidance. Younger kids can lay out the place settings. Kids of all ages can help in some way with cooking. Make sure they are asked to be excused from the table. This way, in a restaurant setting they don't get up and run wild whenever they please. They know that they can't without being excused and parents probably won't excuse them in public. Talk to the children about dining out rules. This needs to be done often. Let them know what is and isn't acceptable. Play "going out to eat" with your kids. Let them explore what happens if they do x or y, without disrupting people who are actually trying to enjoy their dining out experience.

These are stories of why teaching your kids acceptable dining out behavior is appropriate. There are many restaurants that are now choosing to be kid free.

I personally don't see anything wrong with this, and yes, I do have a child. Some people, such as couples or business workers, go to a restaurant expecting to be able to talk to each other or enjoy each other's  company without so much as a pouty call of "moooommmmmm please" being heard. That's perfectly ok. As adults, we're allowed to be free of our kids sometimes. Upscale eateries probably weren't designed with kids in mind. If I'm going to eat somewhere fancier than Applebees then I expect parents to control their children. If they can't, then they should probably not eat their until their child can learn manners for restaurants and eating out. I'm not saying all restaurants should ban children, just ones that feel it's necessary. I took my daughter to Carino's the other night knowing full and well that I probably would have to eat my food microwaved out of a to go container. My child knows how to act in restaurants but chooses not to remember sometimes. However, I was fully surprised at how good she was. We (me and my wonderful boyfriend) actually got to enjoy our visit. She never once cried or wined about anything. She never got up out of her seat except to go to the bathroom and she never stood in it either. The other diners around us were never bothered. I don't know why I decided to risk taking her somewhere so nice, but I'm glad I did because I got to enjoy her company as well as some amazing food. If she could always act that way I'd be eternally greatful. Just think before you take your child somewhere nice. Make sure they can handle the atmosphere first. You don't want a 3 year old screaming in the booth behind you, so why would anybody else? Some restaurants such as Chuck E. Cheese are made for kids and are a good place to begin learning about dining out and the rules that apply. Just please, for everybody's sake, don't bring your kid to 609 (upscale restaurant in Joplin) if they can't behave. I hate to give dirty looks, but here, I might just have to.

8 comments:

Scott said...

There have been a few times that I wish I wasn’t sitting next to a kid that was just out of control. I don’t blame the child, but I do blame the parents. My wife and I go out all the time for dinner and it really is not a problem to be around kids in a restaurant. We don’t have children either, so if they did ban children from certain restaurants, that would not stop me from eating there, if I liked the place already.

Ali said...

thank you, thank you, thank you! As a waitress, it is so frustrating. As another parent, I agree that it should be our responsibility to teach our children how to behave in public. A child just simply doesn't understand, and needs to be taught.

ksparkman said...

I have also been out to dinner and had to endure ill behaved children. It's very disruptive and I feel it is the parent's fault for not teaching their children how to behave. I am very lucky both my kids have always been good when we are out in public if we are out to eat or in a store they are well behaved.

Chelsea said...

Im a waitress and i have delt with parents and thir children acting up. It upsets me alot because alot of people dont respect that im trying my best to make them happy.

Brian Switzer said...

I need you to teach me how to put links in the text of your post.

Chloe said...

It really hasn't been a problem for me either. However, my employer has a kid's night and I see it on a weekly basis how terrrible kids can be. It's a shame!

Chloe said...

I know how you feel. When I was a waitress the same things happened to me. It still does and I deliver pizza. All we can do is smile and try and work through it!

Chloe said...

I agree that it is the parents' fault for not teaching children to behave. Good for you kids! Thanks for teaching them the right things.