When you’re on the road or visiting a restaurant, keeping your toddler occupied can be one of the most difficult tasks. Our little guy has the attention span of a gnat and wants to walk/explore where ever we go.
Over the years, we’ve found certain useful products that can make dining out with your toddler (or even at-home meals) more enjoyable.
(1) Interactive Place mat
With cheerful, interactive place mats, mealtime will not only be cleaner but also fun and educational as well. Toddlers love mental stimulation, which is why they’re always trying to explore their surroundings. If you make the table somewhere interesting to sit, they’re more likely to stay-put.
(2) Go Boost Travel Booster Seat by Brica
The Brica® GoBoost™ Travel Booster Seat is ideal for spontaneous on-the-go dining. With a quick un-zip, you’ve got a stable, secure seat that transforms any chair into a toddler-ready seat. The strong internal frame accommodates a child up to 50 pounds. It features durable, easy to clean material, no-slip grip on the bottom and storage to hold bottles, cups and diapers.
Click here to purchase: $67.99
(3) Portable Place Covering (not to be confused with place mat)
If your toddler still likes to self-feed and often ends up with food on the table, you’ll definitely want something that covers public surfaces. We’ve tried everything from roll-out silicone mats to suction placemats and we’ve honestly never had much success. The Go Folding Placemat was a definite winner in our house hold. It’s super compact (so you can slip it into your diaper bag), easy to clean and is no-fuss (meaning you don’t need to worry about suctions etc). Our toddler even uses it at home when he’s doing crafts or having a tea party so you get a lot of use out of it.
(4) No-Tip Cup
After months struggling to find the right bottle for your baby, the next challenge is tracking down the ideal sippy cup. Just like bottles, there’s no right or wrong – it all depends on how well your child takes to straws, 360 cups etc. We love the no-tip cup. The base is wide and very stable, which works well for our little guy who’s taken a keen interest in pouring liquids from one cup to another. With the first use, he nailed the big-boy cup. So if you’re still trying to figure out how to get your child onto a regular drinking glass, this is a perfect transitional piece.
(5) Stacking Barrels
This might seem like a random suggestion but these stacking barrels have saved us on so many occasions. The reason they’re such a successful travel toy is that you can do something different with them where ever you go. From filling each one with a different table condiment (sugar packets, ketchup etc) to putting random surprises inside and then placing one inside the other, our son never seems to tire of these. You can go vertically and stack them up tall, put them inside one another or take them apart and play with them like bowls. It’s a simple, creative way to keep your child’s mind entertained and they don’t take up any room at the table.
For other helpful tips on dining out with a toddler, visit these websites: