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Going Out to Dinner: Before and After Toddlers

What used to be a relaxing way to unwind has now become an hour of cutting up food, cleaning up messes, and being interrupted 374 times. But it's OK. What toddlers lack in manners they make up for in adorableness. Here are nine ways going out to dinner is different once you have a toddler. Bon appetit!

Going Out to Dinner Before Toddlers

You casually peruse the menu while chatting with your dinner companion, and you don't even notice that the waiter hasn't come over to your table for 20 minutes. What's the rush?

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Going Out to Dinner Now

You politely flag the waiter over to your table two minutes after sitting because your child is hungry NOW.

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Going Out to Dinner Before Toddlers

You always BYOB if it's an option.

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Going Out to Dinner Now

You always BYOSC (bring your own sippy cup). Because a cup without a top is a cup that will be spilled.

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Going Out to Dinner Before Toddlers

After eating, you quietly slip out of the restaurant with a simple nod to the staff.

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Going Out to Dinner Now

After eating, you frantically try to clean the floor while profusely apologizing to the staff.

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Going Out to Dinner Before Toddlers

You ask the waitress if there are any specials.

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Going Out to Dinner Now

You ask the waitress if there are any crayons.

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Going Out to Dinner Before Toddlers

You and your partner share your entrees.

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Going Out to Dinner Now

Your child eats your entire meal, and you're stuck with a plate of chicken fingers.

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Going Out to Dinner Before Toddlers

You shy away from restaurants that have kids.

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Going Out to Dinner Now

You shy away from places that don't have kids.

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Going Out to Dinner Before Toddlers

You and your partner talk about all the places you'll go and the things you'll do in the future.

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Going Out to Dinner Now

You and your partner can barely get a word in edgewise.

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Going Out to Dinner Before Toddlers

You quietly judge the family with the rambunctious toddler who's making a mess.

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Going Out to Dinner Now

You give a knowing nod to the family with the rambunctious toddler who's making a mess.

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Going Out to Dinner Before Toddlers

You're only on leg one of your night. Where to next? A movie? Dancing? Sky's the limit!

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Going Out to Dinner Now

You're most definitely going home afterwards ... and you couldn't be happier because snuggling and storytime trumps any "it" club any day of the week.

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