Kids at the café… are you kidding?!

“Mummy’s having a skim flat white… with no sugar!” My almost 3 year old excitedly pronounced to the waitress as I opened my mouth to order.


Woah! I was gobsmacked. Perhaps I was having too many coffees of late for my daughter to know my exact order??

My little angels are now 1, 2 and 3 years of age… yes, yes it was planned!

Until having children, I didn’t quite appreciate the potential challenges that lie in hanging out at the café… with your littlies.


Now – I love a good coffee. There are some fantastic local hangs and I am always happy to check out a rave review café. That was certainly occurring more frequently prior to the little ones!

Occasionally one has to take off their coffee snob hat, for there are so many other factors that need considering, like;


Does the café provide a high chair? (if not stroller needs packing)

Is the cafe so popular we have to wait around for a table? (will not happen easily with the little angels)

How long does the food take on average to come out?

Is there enough physical space in the joint?

Do they mainly have outdoor seating (in which case – is the weather just right?)</li>

Once all those factors are taken into consideration, there are the “on-the-day” factors. Such as, the amount the kids slept the night before; which directly equates to when their afternoon sleep is due, which directly equates to the time left before their grumpiness and irritability peaks! (And possibly yours too).


So, here are a few tipsto help make your café visit more enjoyable…

Keep a café bag in the boot of your car/s… change the items and activities in there periodically (yes, this means the iPhone/iPad are not consistently kidnapped!)

Items may include;

  • Books
  • Colouring in pencils (don’t forget a sharpener)
  • Etch a Sketch
  • Scrap paper
  • Magazines (young kids tend to love the baby magazines)
  • Sticker Books (and stickers of course)

Most importantly – breathe and stay present, sip don’t skull, chew don’t scoff, and remember to enjoy the special and valuable time with your family!


This article was published in the August 2014 issue of Shire’s Children 

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Mother of three young children, and senior level Speech & Language Pathologist. Sonia founded a successful Sydney based private practice in 2006. She regularly presents community seminars, writes articles for parent magazines and does guest speaker gigs on community radio. Sonia enjoys writing, and hopes one day to be a published children's picture book author too!

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