I woke on Sunday morning and Mr Munch went up the road to fetch me a coffee (well he did have a leave pass the night before to go out and play with his brothers) and he came home with the papers and thrust The Sun Herald under my nose.... the title was "Treating children with kid gloves - the problems with helicopter parenting".
Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh don't get me started! I left playgroup because of a freaky helicopter mother who didn't like my free range parenting skills!
After finishing my lovely coffee and reading said article I suggested to Mr Munch that we go out for a leisurely Sunday pub lunch (like we used to in the days before the kids) - somewhere we hadn't been before. I thought of the HPH as we had been driving past it for years and had recently noticed that it had been refurbished and was advertising a children's playground. I did my due diligence and researched their website and it all looked soooooooo good.......especially because from 1pm - 3pm on Sunday they have kiddie entertainment.
Excitedly we piled into the Hyundai and zoomed off to Pennant Hills. When we arrived in the pub's car park we discovered it was shared with a busy craft store. So spaces were limited and Mr Munch had to fight off a crafty old crow for the last car spot.
HPH has definitely had a groovy make over, similar to all those cool city pubs. Smartly they have put in 2 playgrounds near the bistro to entice the middle class upper north shore yummy mummas. One play ground is for the 2-4 yr olds and the other for the 5 - 10 yr olds. Things were looking so good and we were all very excited...
But that excitement soon evaporated when I deposited our boys in the 5 - 10 yr playground because we couldn't get into the younger one as there were so many HELICOPTER PARENTS! And then more helicopter parents arrived and rotated their way into the older playground. They were in it, they were at the gate and they were knocking on the windows of the damn thing. Get a grip parents! There was no room for the progeny of free range parents to move!
The boys were outta there in a flash cause some half wit parent left the gate open and they were demanding refreshments. Luckily the HPH are smart operators and serve kid's size lemonades in plastic cups for $1.20 and they also sell fruit juice poppers.
Mr Munch went up to order our lunch at 11.58 am and was curtly told by the bistro bird that she could take his order but service didn't start until 12.00 pm and then the kitchen doesn't fire up until 10 mins after that - and they are advertising them selves as family friendly? Come on guys don't you know that little kids like to be fed early??
The boys made another attempt into the bull ring of helicopter parents and this time actually enjoyed themselves. It is quite a good playground albeit a small one. I say "a playground" because it is one playground with a dividing fence. There are slippery slides and crawling tunnels in the big kids side and nice soft climbing mats in the little ones side.
Lunch arrives - chicken nuggets and chips for the kids at $9.00 (complimentary kids pack was meant to be included but was MIA) we probably could have lined up to ask for one, but those damn rotating parents had formed a queue a mile long with their progeny in tow.
The adult food at HPH is typical pub fare and easily washed down with a beer or two (which you will need to cope with the helicopter parents). There is also a "cafe" within the hotel that serves light refreshments (muffins, toast etc) from 10am - 12pm each day, as well as coffees and babycinos ($1) so perhaps next time we might give that a go to see if the service is any better.
It was about 12.45 pm and Mr Munch was certainly itching and scratching because of the sheer volume of people that had arrived for lunch so we cornered the boys and made a fast exit before the "kiddie entertainment" arrived. So apologies I cannot comment on the value of the entertainment.
A few other things to note - pram access is from the front of the pub, but the parking is around the back. They have a big stack of Ikea high chairs. They have a nice outdoor eating area and there is a great selection of ice cream for dessert at $3.00 a scoop x
352 Pennant Hills Rd Pennant Hills NSW
02 9484 2266
Open 7 days - bistro from 12.00pm sharp!