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Home >  Information A-ZAll Kids Information Articles Dining in Public with Babies

Dining in Public with Babies:

Babies are a lot different than older children when it comes to everything, and how they act in public is no different. Babies don't understand the concept of what other people think, or how other people would like to enjoy their peace and quiet during their meal. They have no understanding of the fact that eating in public should be any different than eating at home. But, there are a few precautions you can take to make the experience as enjoyable as possible.

• Go to baby-friendly places—it is best if you go somewhere that has other families with other babies for most of your dining out experiences. Knowing about the place you are going in advance can help you make certain that you aren't sitting in a silent restaurant with a baby that is disrupting everyone's meal.

• Take toys—you should take small toys with you to occupy your child while you are waiting for your food. Just make sure they are the quietest toys your child owns. If you think that hearing that little bear's tune is annoying to you, imagine how the stranger at the table next to you will feel.

• Ordering their food—unless your baby can't yet eat table-foods, you will want to make sure that you order something for your child. Especially if you can order some sort of food that they can hold, or that you can set in front of them for them to feed themselves. This helps keep them occupied, plus they feel big. One thing that many parents fail to think about when ordering food, though, is that you need to order some type of food for your child that won't be hot. This could be something as simple as a side order of little tomatoes, or extra crackers with your salad. This is very important because your child will be hungry when the food arrives. Even if they aren't hungry, they will still smell it and want some, and the parents will be able to eat as soon as the food arrives, but the child will not because it will be too hot. Ordering food and having to make your child wait to eat while the food sits on the table is the quickest way to cause your child to become upset and loud and draw attention to themselves.

• Take them outside—if your child begins crying or throwing a fit while you are in a restaurant, you should step in the bathroom or outside with them. Many times, your child will want to go back to the table, and it will cause them to stop crying more quickly. Even if it doesn’t, at least your baby won't be disturbing other people's dinner.

• Pay attention to timing—if there is any reason that your child might not feel well, you will not want to go out to eat that night. If they are sick, tired, had shots that day, are teething, etc, you will not want to take them in public. They will likely feel bad, and having to sit still and be quiet for a long period of time waiting on their food is not a great idea.

Of course, there will always be those times that it will not be a very good experience, but this doesn't mean it will always be like that. Babies, just like kids and adults, have both good days and bad days, so this means that many times it will be an excellent experience. Just remember, too, that as they get older dining in public will become easier and a lot more fun for both the parents and the children.

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