Has it really been two weeks since we celebrated our gorgeous boys 6th birthday? It really has. I say this all too often but time is whizzing by, I really do need to find someone to build me a time machine. In attempt to savour the moment and to celebrate our boy turning 6 we surprised him by both meeting him at his classroom door at the end of the school day. With balloons in hand, a huge smile and feeling a little teary at the sight of my now 6 year olds little face as he saw us. We scooped him up and held on tight – it was the best cuddle, he looked so happy at the sight of us and this moment alone filled my mummy heart to the brim.
These moments when it is just the three of us really do make me smile, these are the memories that will stay with us, the moments that we’ll recall and of course a little photo or three for us to pin on our photo wall. These are the moments I cherish, it still feels like yesterday that we very nearly lost him – when we went into premature labour, the moment his heart stopped beating followed by the moment so many doctors and nurses filled the room. I often find myself feeling overwhelmed with emotion around his birthday, feeling so grateful that all turned out well in the end but reminded of the challenges we all faced at the start of our gorgeous boys life.
And so, let me get back to our boys birthday celebrations. I couldn’t let the school day get in the way of celebrating his birthday, so with the help of Joe’s Kitchen at Trentham Gardens we planned a little birthday meal for him. He loves the milkshakes and food so much that we thought it was quite rightly the only place to enjoy a little family meal, just us. And as it was a gorgeous summers night Mr H and I tried out the mocktail menu but of course George couldn’t be torn away from a traditional chocolate milkshake. He is definitely a creature of habit.
One of the reasons our boy loves this restaurant so much is the children’s corner which is packed with treats for all ages. And for that matter so do we – no need for phones and iPad’s keeping him entertained whilst we wait for food, just old fashioned conversation over a game of connect four and drawing on a chalk board.
The children’s menu is one of the best I have seen, as is the presentation – these little wooden boxes are the perfect touch and make it so much fun for the young ones. George also loves the children’s menu which is a huge tick in the parenting win box, and often spends most of his time switching between sausage and mash and fish fingers. Unlike a lot of the restaurants we visit there isn’t one choice he could turn his nose up at and personally I think it is great that they include fresh vegetables. And as he can now read it makes it so much more fun for him to choose what he is going to eat, right the way through to dessert!
The menu had changed slightly since we last visited so we decided that we would try something a little different. The food is always beautifully presented, full of colour and never disappoints. My Maple Glazed Pork & Pear Salad really had my taste buds going, some two weeks later I can still smell the freshness and zing of chilli and lime. I always worry when I choose a salad – will I be left feeling hungry, absolutely not. A really great choice which left Mr H waiting for my leftovers despite eating his fish pie! I’m sure it is on the job spec when you become a daddy to eat everyones leftovers, he certainly doesn’t go hungry that’s for sure.
Family time really is the best time. There was a time when eating out just wasn’t fun, when your little one is toddling about and food is either left cold or you are left with indigestion. Restaurants like Joe’s Kitchen have all bases covered – entertainment for the littles, good music and a shabby chic decor that impresses on walking in. We’ve been lucky that for the last couple of years he enjoys eating out as much as we do and despite not always being great with his food now eats almost everything that is on the menu. The only thing left to say is that Joe’s Kitchen gets a thumbs up from our little family.
* Disclosure – This is a collaborative post