Kids on the Floor

Eating in restaurants with children is a subject that is near and dear to my heart; obviously because my husband ( is a chef and restaurant owner.  This means that my kids and step kids have spent, and will spend, a lot of time in restaurants.  I see it as a great Eloise-like upbringing, but I know my stepsons don’t always think so.  Often when the cupboards are bare at dinnertime, I have said to Oliver, “We can go to Campanile for dinner or I can heat up this bagel for you.”  Nine times out of 10 he would take the bagel. Restaurants aren’t a treat when you’ve been in them your whole life, I guess.  My little ones are happy to go with dad to work.  In fact, they are a little bent when we don’t take them.  “Mommy is meeting a friend for a cocktail” doesn’t seem to work so well.  I usually say something like, “It’s going to be so boring. We are going to talk and talk and I won’t let you run up the stairs (as they do when the restaurant is closed).”

If I am taking my kids out for a dinner I would rather give my husband’s place the business.  Also, we get a discount (not 100% as my husband says that wouldn’t be right. Of course not! Who said ‘comped’?  I didn’t!). Most of the staff knows my kids by name so if I have to go to the bathroom I don’t worry about Vivien sitting by herself as every server and hostess knows her.  If I have Rex with me (aka More of a Handful) then I can say, “Can you put me in the back where there are fewer or no diners?”

Which leads me to this vlog:  My other strategy for restaurant eating (see here for tips from my life pre-Rex) is to get a corner table. Recently, though, I have found other parents I dine with aren’t in total agreement with this policy.  It even greatly upsets some.  What do you think?

6 thoughts on “Kids on the Floor

  1. Pingback: Twitter Trackbacks for Kids on the Floor » Cool Mom - Fun Videos and a Blog for Moms - Motherhood, Kids, Babies and Parenting on [] on

  2. I go out to enjoy myself and my family, and as long as my kids are well-behaved then other diners can work harder on enjoying their own meals. I love corner booths with a capital C, and have even surrendered to playing tic-tac-toe or helping with coloring sheets while attempting to have a conversation with my husband. You can’t really completely let go of control or chaos will ensue, they need SOME reason to be excited to go out to eat, they need fun too.

    (I’d avoid letting anyone play on the floor (think of all those dirty shoes!)

  3. This would be a good one for Parents Ask. I wear my own shoes around my house on occasion, so I’m not anti-germ. I just imagine walking through places like public bathrooms, and then tracking that wherever the shoes go. With as much varied traffic as you’d find in a restaurant, you just never know.

  4. Eeeew…I wouldn’t do floor play at a public restaurant. I’m with Jessica. It’s icky.

    I spend a lot of time at our local PX (think Sears with a food court). And no, I don’t think the food court is *like* a restaurant, but I imagine it has similar things on the floor. Slush & dirt from boots bringing in snow, food, bits of trash that get missed during clean up.

    And I know for a fact my child has crawled under the table and eaten food from the floor. Then she threw up for the next 2 days. So…I’m more careful about that now…I let her play, but hands don’t touch the floor…and we don’t eat things we find!

  5. Oh, but your children look like a little princess and prince.

    Restaurant royalty.

    Tell Mark I made his sweet peas with walnuts in chicken broth last night at work, and it’s our new vegetable offering!!

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