Restaurant kit for toddlers so you can enjoy your meal

This Christmas we’re invited to go to a restaurant with the family of my husband. It will be the first time we take our toddler to a restaurant and it scares me a little.

My girl isn’t a toddler who likes to sit still (which toddler is?). She loves to run around and discover everything she sees. And we can’t have that when we’re in a restaurant of course.

In the hope to prevent any running and tantrum, and to make sure every one can enjoy their meal in peace, I’m going to make a restaurant kit.

The restaurant kit has to be small, but able to contain enough things to last my daughter an hour or so.
By making sure the things in it can be used for different purposes, we can keep it small but have enough to do. And since I’d like to enjoy my meal too, I want things that she can do on her own.

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What's in the kit

Everything I used to make this kit I had already at home, so that makes it free.  I started with a metal box, you can use a lunch box or a cookie tin like I did, important is that it’s made of metal.
Here are the things I put in the restaurant kit for my daughter.

Restaurant kit for toddlers

How to use the items in the kit

I’m going to give you some ideas of how you can use the items in the kit. If you can think of more ways to use the kit and the items in it, I would love to hear it in the comments.

Magnets

This is why the box had to be made of metal, so the magnets will stick on it. Your toddler will be fascinated by letting them stick on the box.
If you use the box often, this might not be enough anymore. What you can do is draw some lines on the metal box using a permanent marker, have your toddler follow those lines with the magnets.

Pompoms and tweezers

Have your toddler use the tweezers to put the pompoms in the box, this is great for their fine motor. You can draw some shapes in the notebook and have your toddler put the pompoms in the shapes.

Coloring pencils and notebook

You can do a lot with the coloring pencils and the notebook, the first thing that comes to mind is of course coloring. But you can also draw some lines, letters or numbers in it and have your toddler trace them.

Coloring pencil and hairbands

Have your toddler put the hairbands on a pencil, this isn’t as easy as it sounds since the pencil will keep on moving.
Instead of the pencil, you can of course also use the fork or spoon.
If the pencil really moves too much, put some of the play dough on the table and stick the pencil in it.

Stickers and notebook

Peeling and pasting stickers is a lot of fun for the little ones, so this will keep them busy for a while.
If your toddler has a hard time to get the stickers of the sheet, you can take the outer edge off (our however you call that thing).
When the notebook is full, you can have your toddler decorate the box with the stickers, then they will have their own personalized restaurant activity kit.

Cars

This one doesn’t need any explanation, cars are just fun to play with for toddlers. Cars are a favorite of my daughter, and when I need her to sit still I ask her questions like ‘where are the tires?’ or ‘what sounds does the police car make?’.

Play dough

Play dough is a lot of fun to play with, and you can ask her to make a ball, or a pancake shape. You can also use the shapes you’ve drawn in the notebook, have your toddler put the play dough in these shapes.

When you go out a lot, your toddler will get bored with it. But you can prevent this, you can change the items in the kit.
You can use different magnets, add some cards with road pieces drawn on them, or get a smaller tweezers to make it more challenging for your toddler.

If you have any other ideas, I would love to hear them so make sure to leave a comment.

Restaurant activity kit toddlers
Restaurant activity kit toddlers

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