Tuesday, May 15, 2012
Tuesdays Tip: Dining out with a 3 year old.
A few Wednesday’s ago I took my daughter to dinner. My car was still in the shop and I didn’t have a car seat in the rental so I stopped over and we walked to dinner. We went to a Chinese place across the street. The walk was nice and it gave me a chance to get some fresh air and just enjoy pushing Quinn. She loves Chinese food so she was so excited to go.
Now I didn’t bring a bag with games or crayons or anything to entertain her so I knew I would have to be creative. We got there and I ask where she would like to sit. I find if you let them pick their seat they will feel like a big kid and the night will go smother. If you just make them sit some place the night can start off down hill. Remember there are times when you have to do the work and instruct your child, and there are times you can give them room to do things they want. We got seated and we looked over the menu. I stared talking to her about her day and what she likes to eat there. Getting your child involved will keep them busy. Bringing things for them to do is nice but it also distances them from you. If you are alone its nice to just have the two of you talking. I offered up some ideas for dinner and we figured out what we wanted. We ordered sesame chicken and a kid’s low main dish.
As we waited we talked about school, how her day was just small chit chat. At 3 you will be surprised how much your child can carry on a conversation. We also joked and laughed. I always ask her what my name is. She goes “Chris” ha-ha I love it! She makes me laugh so much. My parents try to correct her and say “that’s Daddy” I know it is a phase but I can’t help but just laugh. I asked her at dinner and she told me Chris. I love it! As we waited for our dinner to come we talked about how here week was going and Easter coming up. How she will be going to see her family and things. At one point she needed a straw for her glass and she pointed to the server area and goes “there is one there”. I didn’t see one and said “Hun I don’t see any”. When the server came over I asked for one and she pulled it right from the area Quinn pointed to. I was like you little smarty! I was so impressed; I guess she is already starting to pass her father. I really though I had a few more years before I was pushed down the latter of power! I know I didn’t have any crayons or books so I just kept talking to her. Asking her if she was excited about dinner and if she was having fun. Just making sure she didn’t get bored or anything. The thing about kids is they love us. Parents are their world and if you just give them that attention they will grow and blossom into amazing people.
You have to make sure you are paying attention and not distracted. Put your phone away! Don’t do anything that makes your child wonder if you even care about them or are to busy doing something else. Showing your child that you are interested in what they have to say and do is going to make all the difference. When dinner came she got so excited and you could just tell how happy she was to be out with her Dad. I love being a Dad not only because I have always wanted but just because of how this littler person looks up to you and you are their world. Being a single Dad has tough me a lot and I have a lot to go but I notice when we are out people look over and see how we interact. I think it’s very nice when people smile when they see a single Dad doing his best. I think a lot of people know how busy and hard it is to be a single Mom and I think a lot of the time people think single Dad’s are there but they do their own thing. So when society see’s a Dad that is just going above and beyond they love it. I think with the majority of kids living with their Mom it is very important that Dad does a super job and steps up. As dinner progressed on we continued to talk and just enjoy each other’s company. Anything she learned she shows me to impress me. Well I am very impressed all the time because she is so amazing. It’s cute to see how they get your attention and then show you they can do something new like use their fork better ask for food and say it, not just point. Using please and thank you is something she is getting very good at.
I could tell she was wrapping up when she starts playing around and taking her time. We wrapped up dinner and then left. I ended up getting a good fortune and have to find it to blog about it. I really liked it… We walked home and I hugged her goodbye. When we were there I ended up ordering some soup for her mom. I brought it to her when I dropped Quinn off and just told her I wasn’t sure if she ate but I got you some dinner. It was just a nice gesture. Now I’m sure some of you may say why are you spending your money on your Ex!? Well one it was really nothing big and two again you have to just show good faith here and there. I didn’t get her a dozen roses and a love card. Just something to say hey, I’m a good guy and maybe someday you will finally realize that. Now that’s not exactly the response I’m pushing for but I always felt I was a good guy and its okay to do good deeds…
As hard as divorce is I still try to show good form and let her Mom know I’m not mad at her and we have to work together. It was a fun day and I made the most of my time. I couldn’t let her sleep over because of my car but I made the best of what I had and that is what counts. I have learned over time you have to do what is best and take what you can get. I didn’t pout or get upset. My car in the shop was not in my control so I worked around it. Being a single Dad is all about plan B. You have to have back up plan for everything. When things change you just have to adapt. I know it doesn’t seem fair but you do. This event was good because not only did we have fun but I worked out the night with her Mom and we got along and everyone won. Most importantly my daughter won and that is the most important aspect.
Always remember, when your child wins, you win. The fact that your child does see you even for a period of time will keep you fresh in their mind and continue to help them grow and they will know you are trying your best. If they know they can’t see you because of reasons outside your control they will understand and adapt. Just show them you love them and are always there. The rest will come with time…
I hope I have brought joy to your day today…
You are never alone…