*Paid Collaboration with EasyTots
Weaning is a wonderful stage in a baby’s life. It is the point where they begin to have their first tastes of the foods they will enjoy throughout the rest of their lives. It’s monumental, memorable and altogether a bit messy. When my first son Henry reached the weaning age, I felt very restricted like I was chained to the home. It meant that we as a family missed out on many opportunities and adventures. I felt that he needed to eat his meals at home and I was anxious about eating out with him. It was such a shame because we are a big foodie family and we like to enjoy meals out together so this time around with Hugo I was adamant we wouldn’t be missing out. It is true that eating out with a weaning baby can be challenging, but I have picked up a few tips to make things a whole world more manageable.
Eating Out with a Weaning Baby
Consider the time
Think about the time in which you are planning on eating. Don’t forget to take into account waiting times and travel if applicable. Think about how this all ties in with naptime/bedtime or any milk feeds. Pre-children we could happily go out for dinner after 8pm without a care in the world, but now we have to think a bit more carefully. If you have no control over the time because you are attending an event, for example, try and incorporate a nap or adjust the routine slightly to compensate.
Take Some Pre-Prepared Food
Most family-friendly restaurants have extensive children’s menus and more often than not weaning children will just eat from the plate of their parents, but I always think it is worth taking along some pre-prepared foods to keep them going until the food arrives. Our favourites are soft carrot batons, sliced strawberries and banana fingers.
EasyMat Mini from EayTots
There are so many baby accessories on the market designed to help make our lives as parents easier one of my favourite finds at the minute is the EasyMat Mini. If you are choosing a baby led weaning approach then eating out with your baby can sometimes be more difficult. The EasyMat Mini allows you the flexibility to plan in advance making the whole process less stressful. It also eliminates any worries over the cleanliness of restaurant highchairs and means that you don’t have to put food in something like a bowl or plate which is often inappropriate for a weaning baby as they can be easily tipped, thrown or broken.
This suction plate makes things super easy, and it’s ideal for using at home and taking on the go. The four suction cups on the corners prevent the whole meal ending up on the floor while also encouraging self-feeding and independence. It can be placed directly onto the table or onto a highchair tray, the sides fold in, and it comes with a sealed lid and carry case making travelling with it a breeze. It means you don’t have to worry about taking home messy bowls or plates as it’s all contained and then it can just be washed when you get in.
Watch for Cues of a Tired Baby
Restaurants and days out can be stimulating for a baby which is both a blessing and a curse. It can often mean that babies end up feeling tired much more quickly than when in their usual surroundings. Watch for cues of tiredness and act on them accordingly. It might mean skipping dessert or after dinner coffee but it will mean your evening ends on a positive note.
Prepare for the Clean Up
Weaning babies make a mess it’s pretty much a given, but you don’t need to get stressed out about it. By making sure you have some clean up essentials to hand you really have nothing to worry about. It’s easy to forget the simple things you always have at home like a bib, but if you want to save your little one’s clothes, it’s best to always have a spare one in the change bag. Carry a cloth or wipes to help clean up any spills or messes and an extra carrier bag is always useful to put in any messy items for the journey home.
Do you have any tips for eating out with a weaning baby? I would love to hear them! If you want to find out more about getting started with baby led weaning from EasyTots. This is the first in a series of guides they are putting together to help support parents so it’s worth keeping an eye on what’s to come in the future!
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