Tag Archives: eating out

10 Reasons I Brunch

Brunch is super trendy right now. You probably see memes about it, pictures your friends post on your Instagram feed, and local restaurants promoting their brunch specials. Whichever day you brunch, it’s likely a lovely event with friends, yummy food, and a mimosa or two. Here are the reasons I personally love brunch.brunch.jpg

1. I love breakfast. I’ve written about this before, but it’ll never stop being true. Breakfast food is the best food. Any time of day.  So there.

2. Sunday is my busy day. It might be the most common brunch day anyway, but on Sunday, I’m often too tired by the time church is over to even consider what I’d like to do for lunch. This is where my hubby and besties come in, whisking me off to brunch.

3. The kids love it. What’s something easy your kids will actually eat at a restaurant? Brunch food. I feel like most kids love things like pancakes, waffles, French toast, and other brunchy things.

4. Mimosas. I don’t even have to explain why something bubbly and sweet is a perk, do I?

5. I love seeing my friends. What is brunch unless you’ve got all your people with you? My kids are the cutest, my hubby is the best, and our friends and their kids can complete a brunch date with their good company.

6. It’s springtime. The weather has been beautiful, the sun is gleaming but not blistering hot, and there’s usually a pleasant breeze around brunchtime. It’s the perfect excuse to eat bacon outdoors.

7. Eggs. Shall I elaborate on why eggs are the ideal food? Okay, you forced my hand. I hardly need to count the hundred ways that eggs could be prepared by even the most basic of chefs. I also don’t need to list reasons that eggs are very healthy and beneficial for your body. What I will say is this: have you ever had a perfectly fried egg?

8. I can sleep late and still not cook. Brunch on a Saturday means that I don’t have to worry about feeding the family anything right when we get up. We can snooze a little longer, and not have to rush to the kitchen to get breakfast in before we head out for the day. Brunch IS heading out for the day!

9. You can have the sweet and the savory. I’m always torn at brunch places on whether to get something sweet or something savory. I love having a veggie omelette, for example. But I know when my kids chocolate chip pancakes arrive, I’m going to covet that dessert-like dish. But I think it’s acceptable (and there’s an option on most brunch menus!) to have a little bit of both. Best of both worlds, if you will. After all, it is breakfast and lunch.

10. It’s easier than going out to dinner. Taking our kids out to dinner sometimes means that they’re already tired, or too hungry, or that they just can’t sit still any more that day. But at brunchtime, they’re still fresh, and they’re more likely to behave (or at least stay in their chairs). We want our kids to know what it means to go to a restaurant, but brunch is a great time to practice restaurant etiquette.

Well, there you have it… ten reasons I think brunch is worth doing. You can find me brunching pretty much every weekend – join me!

5 Tips for Eating Out with Kids (and 5 Reasons It’s Still Gonna Be Hard)

This post also appeared on My Big Jesus

Hubby and I are foodies. We like to eat out at lots of different restaurants, try new things, get ideas to use in our own kitchen, and experience local flavors. We want those things to be valued in our kids as well, but who are we kidding? It’s tough to be at a restaurant with small kids. Just yesterday, we went out to brunch after church with our three kids, at a fairly nice restaurant downtown. We had a mostly successful time, and we’ve agreed that it’s experiences like yesterday’s brunch that trick us into thinking, Our kids are so good at restaurants! I’m here to tell you it isn’t always that way, BUT! I have a few tips to make it go more smoothly.

 1. Bring activities. This sounds a lot like “bring your tablet”, but it doesn’t have to be that way. My kids love those cheap little activity/coloring pads and a “magic” pen that only writes on the pad. They also like stickers and a pocket-sized notebook. Or games on an iPhone. I would love to say I’m above it, but I’m totally not – especially in a pinch.

2. Order an appetizer. Or order the kids’ food right when you arrive. The quicker a little food gets on the table, the better. If you don’t want to spoil their dinner, I totally get it. Order a healthy-ish appetizer, or look over the menu online, and be ready to order their dinner when you order your drinks. That bloomin’ onion might actually save your dinner.

3. Allow yourself to set the bar low. I don’t mean let your kids run around screaming, but sometimes, if they’re switching seats with each other every three minutes, that’s better than popping up at other people’s tables to say hello to every single stranger in the room. It’s hard to allow a few things to slide, but if they have a small amount of freedom, that little bit will take the place of having a bigger problem.

4. Go out when the kids are well-rested. If your daughter missed her nap today, it might not be the best night to try out that new restaurant. You’d hate to be that couple who were escorted off the premises for bringing a mountain lion into the restaurant.

5. Let them have a special treat. My kids are all about some special treats, whether they’re special drinks (lemonade, anyone?), dessert (to share, of course), or even an entree I wouldn’t normally consider the best choice. But when we’re at a restaurant, they know that it’s a special time for our family, and ordering chicken and waffles for dinner is okay by me!

Now, those tips are not fool-proof. They are not a recipe for a drama-free dinner with your children. It does not ensure a date night feel, or a happy, clean, relaxing experience. And yes, the childless couple in the corner is still eyeing your table with disdain. Here’s why:

1. Your kids hate the activity you brought.

2. Your son doesn’t like fried food, bread, or salad. He only eats macaroni and cheese from a box, and this restaurant doesn’t serve that.

3. You set the bar low, but your kids set it even lower.

4. They got their naps in, and so they’re bundles of energy that cannot be contained to a booth.

5. That maple syrup just got EVERYWHERE.

So, going out to eat is always an adventure, but they’ve gotta learn to be polite at a restaurant sometime. Why not now?