Lydia C. Lee is still trying to work out what to do with her one wild and precious life. She currently is a haphazard blogger. Read more at holidazeandhellidaze.blogspot.com.au or www.pandoraandmax.blogspot.com
Published November 13th 2012
Head to Sky Phoenix and see happiness rise from the ashes
These days most people start their kids off with training wheels when learning to ride a bike, leading to a smooth transition to the real deal. Dining is the same, and in this case, yum cha is the perfect place to start.
The kids get to learn how to behave in a restaurant, experience napery (something a lot of us don't use everyday at home anymore) and a more formal setting, but the parents don't have to waste their time on inferior dining settings.
1. The kids don't have to wait too long - the trolleys come past frequently, and the ordering time is virtually non-existent. The trolleys also work to keep children in their seats.
2. The kids don't eat off a childrens menu. They eat the adults fare. It may start as noodles and spring rolls, but it doesn't take long before they start giving the dumplings and duck a try too. This allows you to go to other restaurants without an expectation that there will be chips and nuggets for the kids.
3. Pick a yum cha restaurant that is big. In this case, the bigger the better. They tend to have a noise level louder than most restaurants, and while you are teaching your children to be mindful of other diners, the occasional outburst or clanking of china won't draw dirty looks or create a stressful situation, and in my opinion, if you are spending money on dining out, it should be enjoyable for all family members, parents especially, as they are ultimately footing the bill.
4. This is an odd one, but at Sky Phoenix they serve the kids soft drink in a bottle with a straw. There is something in a kids brain wiring that makes this a special event. I can't explain it but test it out and see the flurry of excitement this brings. End result, they feel special and think it's a special occasion for them. Go figure.
5. Lastly, but a big one, they don't care about the mess. So you can relax a little. I get forks for the kids but they do like to test out the chopsticks. As a result, our table looks like this:
So don't be daunted taking children to restaurants, and don't minimise your dining experience either. A little practice and your kids will behave perfectly in restaurants, no matter where you go, and yet we still go back to yum cha from time to time, because the kids love it.