Ever since Chris and I began saving for our wedding back in 2007/2008, we've reserved Eating Out for birthday celebrations and anniversaries. Chris would try every restaurant in a 50 mile radius if money wasn't an option but I think it's such a waste of money. (Which is an easy position for me to take when Chris is the main chef in the house...) Any way....
While road tripping to the Mid West for Hannah's baptism we ate at many restaurants and family member's homes that didn't necessarily have a high chair available. Anticipating this, I packed our Restaurant Kit before me left. It was so successful that I want to share it with you.
I use an oversized clinique gift-with-purchase cosmetics bag. It's large enough to hold everything we need and has a wipe-able lining. And it was free. Perfect.
My mom gave me a yellow Kiddopotamus TinyDiner placemat, but it wasn't until I USED it that I was impressed. At about $10, it's a great investment as it can be used for children of any age. The suction cups of the back keep it in place, and it easily rolls up into a self contained mess for cleanup at home. Below I've included links to the new and improved Summer Infant Tiny Diner available in Pink, Blue and Green.
I pack multiple. Plastic, terry cloth, thin cotton - you name it, I pack it. I'm not sure where my fascination with a diaper bag full of bibs stems from, but I'm pretty sure it's because it gives me a false sense of security against baby vomit.
Spoons and sporks. For obvious reasons. Don't make me explain this one.
When Hannah was only 8ish months old, I wasn't too keen on buying her anything off the child's menu. Instead, I'm was all about feeding her some of my steamed vegetables from my dinner or a piece of melon from my breakfast plate. By popping these un-pureed foods in a mesh feeder, she was eating, preoccupied, and generally content for 5 minutes. For ~$5, they're a MUST buy.
I store a couple baby wipes in a snack sized ziplock bags to wipe Hannah's hands, face and the placemat.
Johnson and Johnson has a small pack of hand and face wipes that are easily available at drugstores which is helpful if you use cloth wipes at home and don't regularly keep wet wipes on hand.
And the FOOD:
Last minute additions to the bag are a sippy cup (it can be empty, I just request a glass of ice water or milk), a container of puffs to entertain her until the food shows up, and a pouch of baby food.
Favorite 'pouches' include selections from Plum Organics and Ella's Kitchen readily available at Target and other retailers.
This setup works really well for us, and I hope it helps make Eating Out with a baby easier for You too!
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