04 March 2006

More toddler-in-restaurant tricks

We've all got tricks for keeping our little kids entertained in restaurants. These are Sandy's:

We carry a mesh storage bag full of a couple 3-inch books, a little car, play-doh, a couple crayons, a few seashells (that my son picked himself at the beach) and few marbles. We make little "cups" with the play-doh for the marbles and sea shells so he can play with them - he loves to watch little shapes we make and loves to hold them without crumpling the "cups". Or we grab a piece of paper or even a napkin with the crayons if he feels like artwork. Or draw "tracks" on the paper or make them with the play-doh for the car. Or give him one of the books. Keeps him busy at the table.

At 18 months, if none of these work, the countdown always works. We have noticed that holding our hand up as we countdown from 5 to 0 always works as my son watches time "go away" until it is "all done". And he is ready to settle back down or "take it outside."

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Hey there... Good tips for younger ones. For our girls (4 and 6) we recently purchased a tiny version of the wonderful Cranium game Cadoo. This isn't a cheap miniature version like so many of the other travel games. This looks like someone took a shrink ray to the actual game and put it in a hard case. It's got the little tub of clay,tiny pencil and tablet, die, game pieces and excellent tiny game board. They also sell a version of the original Cranium. Best of all,they are only around $4.50 each. I ordered ours from Barnes and Noble online but I'm sure they can be purchased many other places. -T

Our 3 year old loves his Gameboy Advance, plus you can get easy-to-use cartridges with SpongeBob or other NickToons on them. Kirby and Mario babysit!

Yes, you may now sneer at me in derision. I won't be able to see it though because I'll be enjoying the Chicken Fettuccine at our favorite Italian restaurant.

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