Ever since Cullen was an infant, we’ve been taking him out to explore the Seattle food scene. He started out just snoozing away in his portable car seat, and eventually graduated to joining us at the table in a high chair. We aren’t ridiculous about it, but we do eat out quite a bit. There is amazing food here and it’s part of what we love about living in this area.
Because he’s been familiarized with restaurants regularly from a young age, Cullen has always done pretty well in them. I’ve learned many tips and tricks along the way (come armed with snacks, toys, time it right, etc.) and we rarely have any major meltdowns or meals that require leaving the table. Until now.
Call it the terrible two’s or maybe it’s related to the arrival of a new little brother — whatever it is, we’ve majorly regressed in the whole “fit to take out in public” department. Cullen is asserting himself more and more these days, and for some reason he chooses to exercise his new found “power” most often in restaurants. He stands up constantly in his high chair, refuses to eat, won’t use an inside voice, and just generally misbehaves. Of course it’s not all the time, but it’s more often than I’d like.
Up until now, our defense against this type of bad behavior was always to take him outside and make him spend a few minutes away from the table. But that strategy has been an epic fail the last few times, as it seems time away from the table is actually what he’s looking for. And maybe that’s just it — perhaps he’s just not at an age or stage where dining out is ideal, and that’s okay. These days we typically stick to breakfasts out on the weekends, which seems to be his best meal of the day.
For now, we’ll leave the dinners out for date nights where we can enjoy the food and conversation, and make our meals worth it!