Maintaining a healthy relationship is key and treating yourselves to a dinner date is the perfect way to reconnect. You can try something new, enjoy a proper conversation and tingle your taste buds. However, the thought of dining out may seem like a distant dream once baby arrives. As soon as you have your first child it’s natural for old habits to fall by the wayside, but foodies shouldn’t have to stop doing something they love!
If you’re not blessed with a willing babysitter but are desperate for a change of scenery and cuisine, here are our tips on how you can bring baby along too…
1. Choose the right place
Consider where you will go and do a little bit of research before booking. A fine dining restaurant which isn’t particularly child-friendly probably isn’t the right fit, but there will be plenty of eateries which welcome families with open arms, whose staff are accommodating and won’t bat an eyelid if your child starts to cry. It’s most likely that they’ll also be able to provide you with useful equipment such as a highchair, and anything you need to ensure your experience is a smooth as possible.
2. Be prepared!
Becoming a parent requires the need to be prepared for all eventualities. Carrying out mini risk assessments before you go anywhere becomes second nature. For little ones moving onto solid food, it might be a good idea to pack some snacks you know they will enjoy, especially if they’re a fussy eater.
3. A time for your routine
Depending on the age of your child and your family routine, there will certainly be better times for you to choose to eat out, to ensure everyone has an enjoyable experience. Perhaps you could book your table during what should be nap time – although all parents will know that things won’t always go to plan! You could also coincide your booking with your child’s mealtime, so you can eat together.
4. Keep little hands busy
Unless your child is a newborn, they’re going to need a certain amount of stimulation and chances are they won’t be overly happy about sitting still for too long. Be sure to pack their favourite toy or any other visual aids to keep them occupied until dessert.
5. Embrace your new set up
We realise your whole dining experience is going to be quite different when you bring a child along, but this is something to be celebrated. You can still find a way to connect and it could actually end up being more fun! You’re still going to be able to enjoy new experiences and the pleasure of being together, just with a little more company.
6. Stay local
It may seem obvious, but if you decide to give it a try and your little one simply can’t be soothed, you’ll feel better knowing you can slip off easily. The beauty of staying at the Bedruthan is you’ll only be a short walk from the comfort of your room, and if all else fails, you can settle your child and pop back to dinner by using our baby listening service.
7. Don’t be embarrassed
If you’ve followed all of the above and your child does become unsettled, try not to worry too much. It’s likely that most of the other parents in the room will be able to relate to your situation, and they will be quietly commending you for finding the time, energy and confidence to go for it and eat out when your child is still small!
Having welcomed families to our hotel for a number of years, we encourage parents to feel comfortable enough to dine with their children either in our Wild Café or Herring restaurant. Book a baby and toddler break and you won’t ever have to feel nervous about mealtimes.