Note: Please bear in mind that whilst this topic does canvass opinions, it is not a fight club. You may disagree with other posters but we do ask you please to stick to our Talk Guidelines and to be civil. We don't allow personal attacks or troll-hunting. Do please report any. Thanks, MNHQ.

To think this is a bad idea from pils?

(25 Posts)
louloutheshamed Sun 10-Feb-13 09:18:21

My ds has 2 brothers, both married with dcs. Pils feel that we all don't see enough of each other and that there are not enough times when all the family are Together.

Therefore they have decided that every month or so we are all going to
Go out for Sunday lunch together. Now I
Like Sunday lunch and I get on ok with the rest of the family, but between us there are 4 dcs, aged 2.9, 2y, 21m and 4m.

I find it quite stressful going out with ds (the 2yo) for a meal as it is. He will sit happily I'm a high chair for max 45m on a good day but then twists and whines to be out and I'm finding the idea of formal Sunday lunches with 4 young dcs a bit fraught? Unless pil are on some kind of mission to I still better table manners into the gcs?

I would rather go on a day out/ picnic as a way of spending time together, so might suggest this when the weather Improves.

Iabu to think pils idea may turn out to be a bit of a disaster? Or am I being negative?

louloutheshamed Sun 10-Feb-13 09:18:46

Sorry meant dh has 2 bros not ds!!!

QOD Sun 10-Feb-13 09:20:24

For me it would be the cost too.
What about taking turns to host?
Yu could do that cheap, jacket pots?
Hmmmmm

pictish Sun 10-Feb-13 09:22:16

I think it's a great idea....but I understand your concerns.
All you have to do is pick the right venue tbh. Some places are good with families and very tolerant of bored kids.

Your idea about having a day out is very good as well, of course.

How about a bit of both? One month you have Sunday lunch in a kiddy friendly place, the next you all go to the zoo with a pack up.

Easy peasy!

I dont know I think you are being a little negative, the children wont learn to behave when eating out unless they are taken and if you go to the right sort of place (no quiet upmarket places!) then it could be a nice family tradition. DH and I take our 5 out and while it is a bit of work its still fun and totally doable.

pictish Sun 10-Feb-13 09:23:28

Although admittedly, we couldn't join in with this let's-all-spend-time-together plan, beause we have no spare cash.

pictish Sun 10-Feb-13 09:24:21

I agree 5dc - you make a pertinent point there. That is how kids learn....by doing it!

MagicHouse Sun 10-Feb-13 09:25:21

The idea of meeting quite regularly is nice, though I think it's fair enough that you don't want to do it as they've suggested - I can remember finding it stressful when my daughter was little - it's can't be that erelaxing managing 4 under threes at a meal out. What about suggesting you meet at someone's house, and cook a roast at home. Personally I would like the idea of meeting every month or so, but like you say - vary what you do - meet at someone's home, picnics, walks, park, beach days etc.

Tee2072 Sun 10-Feb-13 09:25:26

I wouldn't do it due to the cost. I think that kids need to learn to eat in restaurants at a young age.

Bring toys and colouring things to keep them entertained.

Take for a walk while waiting for food.

There's a lot of ways to do it, if you really want to.

Why don't you chose a restaurant with a play area, after a few visits the children will get used to the new situation and it will get less stressful. Take a little bag with you for each of the children containing things they can play with at the table, colouring pencils paper.... Try it, there are harder things to do with small children! smile

Megatron Sun 10-Feb-13 09:27:10

YANBU at all. When other people tell me how to spend my and my family's time it really gets my goat. My MIL went through a stage of orchestrating times for us all to be together every few weeks and it was a disaster. Now, two of his brothers don't speak to each other at all, and one of them has no contact with his mother either. We all felt very under pressure and previously everyone had pretty good relationships.

If you want to spend more time with them then great, arrange something that suits you all and if that's monthly that's fine. If not, arrange something when you and your DH's brother want to.

Bobyan Sun 10-Feb-13 09:27:29

It completely depends on your child, my DS could never have sat through a meal at age 2 in a restaurant for more than 45 minutes, my Dd on the other hand would love it...

DontmindifIdo Sun 10-Feb-13 09:32:21

right now at 3, DS wouldn't sit still for that long at the table nicely. I could take things to distract him, have DH walk him round a restaurant to use up energy/keep him entertained waiting for food etc, but generally, eating out is a stressful, not pleasant experience right now with him. (He used to be better, we're working on it again). The level of stressfulness depends on his mood on a particular day, if I can see he's in a 'hard work' mood, I'd not dream of going out for lunch with him, other days it's worth trying. If it's a regular date with others, i'd find it hard work if he's in a bad mood.

It might be better to have meals at each other's houses for now, then going out for picnics etc when the weather is good.

Flisspaps Sun 10-Feb-13 09:44:17

I'd be fucked off at being told they'd decided I had to give up one weekend a month to have a family meal, never mind getting into the cost or entertaining four children in a restaurant on a regular basis.

Sounds very familia to me. Don't worry, I'd give it 3 months, tops. That's what happened to us.

Also my sip who is deeply flawed but has her good points told her em that if she was determined, then fine but DM could pay (especially as she was dictating charming but v pricey & not child friendly country pubs AND was not open to alternative suggestions!).

However, we have always taken DCs for meals out (cheap & cheerful) & I strongly believe that is crucial & how they learn. It is hard work, but that's parenting.

So YABU go with it, say if you can't afford it. It will probably drop off in a few months, don't make a fuss.

HollyBerryBush Sun 10-Feb-13 09:49:17

Nice idea if you can afford it but I would be having a BBQ rotation in the warmer months.

Squeakygate Sun 10-Feb-13 09:53:16

Nice idea to get together. My friends inlaws and bil and sils all get together once a month. They have brunch one Sunday a month and different people host, this gives the chance to do something afterwards if they want and keeps costs down. They live quite close together. All the children in the family are close as are the adults.
The hosts provide food, the family who are visiting look after the hosts children whilst they keep people supplied with drinks and food. If money is a real issue, you could take things along so it doesn't add up too much.
It's a really lovely thing to do, I love spending time with them and wish my family circumstances were different to allow this to happen.

CitrusyOne Sun 10-Feb-13 10:03:38

I don't think your concerns are unreasonable at all. We've always gone to ILs for Sunday lunch, then mil left fil for another man, so dp saw that as reason why we MUST go every Sunday, as fil only has us and dps brother. Now dps brother has 18 month old twins and we have a 16 wk old, yet we HAVE to keep doing Sunday dinner somewhere. (I'm starting to rant now, so will understand if you don't read the rest)

If fil cooks dinner he just watches football the whole time, we don't eat til 5:30 so it turns into a late night for the dcs. Then if us or bil does dinner it's difficult with dcs to cook for 5 adults and 3 kids and seat everyone.

It will be better when the weather gets better- and actually, I'd LOVE just to do it once a month!

There are some weeks when fil wants to go out- which is great for him, but I just don't think he appreciates the logistics of it with dcs.

Try it- it might work- it might be something you just have to suck up and do- and then while you're going through hell, remember me and the fact that I do it every week!

If your objections are purely on the grounds of managing small DC at lunch, then I wouldn't worry too much - they get used to it, and also often find it more interesting with other DC there, rather than just them and lots of adults.

If you are also worried about costs, then that's a whole different discussion.

Jayne266 Sun 10-Feb-13 21:13:55

I do this now with my family every 2 weeks its HORRIBLE don't commit get out while you cansmile

My DS is 6 months spends the whole time crying as their is too many people and he gets worried. I could go on for hours about the problems we encounter but am hoping you will have a better time than me.

Yfronts Sun 10-Feb-13 23:36:02

Can you arrange to meet at a park first to give them the run round and work up some hunger. Go to a family friendly pub with kiddie area. Or meet/eat at a soft play place. Or have a picnic or get together at peoples houses.

FreshLeticia Sun 10-Feb-13 23:55:53

Ask your PILs to host Sunday lunch at their house grin as it is too expensive to eat out. The idea will soon peter out.

mynewpassion Mon 11-Feb-13 00:00:45

Once a month is not much to ask. They aren't even asking for a whole day just a couple hours.

But it could be £25, easily.

maybemayperhaps Mon 11-Feb-13 00:43:55

We do this with my family - not as well-planned as once a month though, but it works out roughly that often. We sometimes have meals at my parents and sometimes eat out. We always pick quite family-friendly places and never had problems with the younger ones. They don't stay in their high chairs all the time, but in the type of places we go to, it doesn't matter if they wander a bit. There are a lot of places with things to keep kids occupied these days.

We couldn't afford to eat out all the time though and it's a little more relaxed when we go to my parents (my home and my siblings' homes are too small to entertain the whole family). My parents love cooking so they look forward to the chance to entertain tbh. We all chip in a bit for the food costs.

I do enjoy it, as my ds and my niece are both only children, so this is a way to have a bigger family relationship. We all get on well and live close together, so it works well for us. We're quite family-orientated and don't socialise that much with non-family members though (very few playdates).

We don't do picnics too often as the weather is far too unreliable!

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now