Monday, 1st June 2015
“Let’s do lunch, mum!”
No sooner than I had enthusiastically extended the offer was I inevitably filled with dread.
My parents are awesome. There’s nothing they won’t do for us, or for our kids.
So, we thought, let’s treat them to a nice lunch! Anywhere they want. Anything at all. It’s the least we can do.
It all seems like a brilliant idea, until you have to make it happen…if you have kids, you’ll know exactly what I mean…with a 4 year old and a 7 month old, a seemingly simple outing like lunch with the folks can easily turn into a complete disaster! You have a very small window of opportunity for things to go smoothly…
On the morning of Queen’s Birthday, we began the stressful task of getting ready to “lunch”
Once bubs had gone down for her morning nap, we (and by ‘we’ I mean ‘I’) ran around still in my pyjamas, making sure the nappybag was stocked, that Mr4 was appropriately dressed, made sure Mr4’s snacks were packed (fruit, muesli bar, crackers and yoghurt – just in case he didn’t find anything suitable to eat, wherever we ended up – you know the drill), located Mr4’s Leappad for entertainment, got bubba’s lunchtime bottle and solids ready, pumped for bubba’s afternoon bottle feed, chased the cat out for snooping on the kitchen bench, made sure hubby was appropriately dressed, chased the cat out for snooping through the rubbish (how did he even get back inside?), snuck into the bedroom where bubs was asleep to quickly run a brush through my hair, dug through a pile of clothes for something to wear, ran around looking for the high heels to match my skinny jeans -which I couldn’t find - so changed my outfit to match what heels I could find, then cleaned up from pumping bubba’s afternoon bottle feed and put everything by the door so we wouldn’t forget anything.
OK feeling like we’re on track.
As soon as bubs is up, I can feed her then we can go. Breathe.
OK she’s up! Go, go, go!
Me to hubby: I’ll feed her – you go put everything in the car – pushchair, frontpack, nappybag, everything by the door.
An hour later…and we’re in the car….and crap, I forgot the bumbo seat. Oh well.
We finally meet mum and dad along the waterfront of Takapuna Beach (only 15 minutes later than we’d planned! We’ll call that a win)
A new block of restaurants had recently opened for business and we thought we would try something new. I glanced at the row of flashy store-fronts and thought for sure this was a bad idea. We have in tow: a baby that screams when she’s over tired, and: a very active 4 year old with even worse ants-in-his-pants-syndrome than his mum.
And THEN everyone decides on ‘Regatta’ – the biggest and flashiest restaurant on the block.
OK, fine. Let’s do this. Me and my brilliant ideas.
We walk in, and the place is buzzing with activity. It’s seriously decked out with beautifully styled décor in it’s obviously nautical theme.
We were seated at a spacious table by a lovely maitre’d amongst other diners. Diners WITHOUT children . Gulp again.
Soon after, our waitress came to take care of us – and take care of us she did!
Water was served, drinks orders were taken and Mr4 was given his own colouring-in-sheet-cum-menu and set of felt tip pens. He was stoked! And so was I – somehow his Leappad had disappeared away from the pile at the door, despite my attempt at being pre-organised.
He sat there quietly and happily colouring in after deciding on the kid’s chicken meal.
So I relaxed a little, only a little, and only because I noticed a couple of families with school-aged children being seated nearby. I breathe out a little sigh of relief.
Right, let’s order.
My family LOVES food.
You can tell by the necessity of our gym-memberships, purely in order to keep our waistlines under control, and by the way our eyes light up where food is involved. We talk about food, read about food, watch programmes about food and plan around food.
And the menu looked amazing.
So, as we do, we ordered as much as we could possibly eat, then sat back with eager anticipation. Then bub’s decided it was let-me-sleep-or-I’ll-scream time. And my blood pressure goes up again. Ugh, they’re gonna hate us! Into the frontpack she goes, and off I go, to pace around outside until she fell asleep.
As it turned out, it didn’t take long at all - the restaurant has a really big outdoor area adjacent to a quiet carpark, which made for a pleasant quiet-time stroll …AND I made it back - with sleeping baby - in time for the entrées!
Mr4’s meal arrived, and was nothing like I had expected:
No fried chicken nuggets, nothing fried at all.
REAL chicken thigh meat, sitting atop a bed of a perfectly cooked vegetable medley of broccoli, baby carrots, snow peas, green beans AND a side salad of salad leaves, cherry tomatoes and shaved parmasan.
Uh oh. He’s not going to eat that, I’m sure of it.
But I was wrong!
He tucked in so quickly I didn’t even get a chance to photograph it!
Then asked for more from everyone else’s plates.
And so we ate, and shared (and by shared, I mean blatantly stole mouthfuls off each other’s plates), then ordered some more, and ate some more.
I was the only one piggy enough to order dessert, which arrived looking like a piece of art. And ofcourse, it was promptly taken off me by Mr4.
It was only as we’re finishing our coffees, that bubs starts to stir. Perfectly timed.
I’m still in awe of how well it all turned out
This place not only delivers food that looks as amazing as it tastes, but in an environment that is incredibly welcoming, and so accommodating to children! The staff were fantastic, despite the fact that they were super busy. Incredible value for the quality of food and service.
It has been a really really long time since I have been compelled to recommend ANYTHING to ANYONE, so those of you with kids – this place is a real treat. I can’t wait to go back again, and this time I won’t stress so much about the kids!