Restaurant Rebellion

I dream about going on vacation. There’s no laundry, no toilets to scrub and no cooking. I get to go out to eat! I imagine relaxing while my waiter brings me another root beer and I calmly look over the dessert menu.

Then I wake up.

Going out to eat with our family is crazy. There’s no relaxing. I feel like my kids are fairly well behaved, but something about stepping into a sit-down establishment brings out the circus clown in all of them.

My oldest two begin arguing immediately over where to sit and who can watch the touch-screen monitor that can call our waiter. My four-year-old has to go to the bathroom the second the waiter arrives and the 2-year-old won’t stop using her high chair as a gymnastics apparatus.

No one can decide between apple slices or French fries, let alone nuggets or mini cheeseburgers. Then the four-year-old throws a half-eaten apple down the aisle.

I feel like half the restaurant is staring as I issue sit-down and be-quiet orders – repeatedly.

Sigh.

So much for dessert. We’ll be lucky if I can finish my entree.

I love going out to eat. But it’s totally different now that I have kids. It’s all a high-paced, let’s-keep-them-quiet session. I get so nervous that they are going to spill their drinks or fall off their chairs that I can’t even chill.

I usually end up sharing my seat and half of my food with one of my kids who didn’t “like” the $6 kids meal I bought for them.

I spend an arm and a leg on a meal none of us really enjoyed.

You would think I would learn. I should realize that it’s going to be hard. They are going to be noisy. They are going to be wiggly. And they are going to barely eat anything.

I’ve got to save the sit-down establishments for when they are older. For now maybe we’ll head somewhere like McDonald’s. With a clown mascot, my kids will fit right in.

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