Local businesses show 'family-friendly' heart

    Being a stay-at-home parent is not easy under any circumstance.  But being a stay-at-home parent in a small town like Beaufort adds even more challenges.  Happily, I am continually finding more and more family-friendly businesses, which makes being a stay-at-home mom much more manageable.  Sometimes it takes some searching, and other times it takes a lot of trial-and-error, but there are many businesses in our great community that are happy to accommodate a frazzled mom toting a handful of little ones in a typical day for this stay-at-home Beaufort mama.

    One recent example worth mentioning… I have been seeing a chiropractor for most of my adult life, and carting around two little girls all day has not done my spine any additional favors.  Even though I have a more hectic schedule than I did prior to having my girls, I have to find the time to go.  There are several chiropractic offices in the Beaufort area, each one very different than the next.  At the first chiropractor’s office that I visited, I would bring my girls to the office with me.  Even though that particular office claimed to be kid-friendly, when one or both my girls were being a bit out of sorts, there sure wasn’t anybody running over to offer me a helping hand.  This was not a pleasant experience.

    I was about to call it quits and just learn to deal with the pain, but then I found the husband/wife team at Beaufort’s New Spring Chiropractic.

    Located in Beaufort Town Center, above what used to be the very kid-friendly Pizza Inn restaurant, the entire office at New Spring Chiropractic is state of the art and all-digital, which makes the visit more about the time with the doctor and less about the paperwork.  Kirstin, Dr. Ben’s wife, used to be a kindergarten teacher, so she is always great with my children.  My toddler always comes with a movie in hand so that she can sit and watch while I enjoy my time relaxing in the hydro massage bed, one of my favorite parts of the appointment.

    After leaving an amazing visit to the chiropractor, I met some friends at one of my favorite local kid-friendly places to eat – Moe’s.  The food is always fresh and my daughter loves the Moo Moo Mr. Cow, mostly because she likes to say that she wants the “moo moo.”  She also enjoys bathing in the queso cheese before finishing off her meal with a snickerdoodle cookie, the crumbs sticking nicely in the beard of queso on her chin.

    As a stay-at-home mom, there is nothing sweeter than an opportunity to let my husband change a diaper while I eat a meal out.  Many restaurants in Beaufort do not have changing stations in their restrooms, but Moe’s has one in both the men’s and the women’s restroom.  On my last visit, which was with my moms group, it was immediately apparent that their two highchairs would not be nearly enough for our entire entourage.  I asked Jeff, the brand new owner, whether he had any more highchairs, and he said that he had just put in an order for many more new ones. Music to my ears.  Also, Moe’s has moved Family Night to Thursdays in order to not coincide with other restaurants in the area.  Thank you, Jeff, for watching out for our families!

    After naptime, we ventured out again, this time to Gilligan’s Restaurant for a nice family dinner.  Monday is Kids Night at Gilligan’s, which means kids 10 and under get a free kids meal with the purchase of an adult entree from 4pm to close.  There’s also free entertainment for the kids on Mondays, which often consists of a clown and balloon animals.  Who doesn’t love a free meal and entertainment?  In addition to their great view over the marsh and delicious seafood, they have the always-amusing fish tank for my girls to check out, which is a welcome activity while we are waiting for our food to arrive or when when they decide that they have finished eating ten minutes before I have.  Also, you cannot miss the tower of highchairs waiting as you walk in the door!  However, there is no changing station in the men’s bathroom at Gilligan’s.  This is a minor gripe of course, but hopefully the folks at Gilligan’s will decide to help us moms out and let the dads get their hands dirty by springing for a new changing station.

    Beaufort is a great town to raise a family.  Lots of our restaurants have ‘Kids Eat Free Nights’ and ‘Family Dinner Nights’, and they value-price the meals accordingly.  We are also fortunate that many of our local business owners are able and willing to accommodate the additional challenges presented by being family-friendly.    Thank you New Spring Chiropractic, Moe’s Southwestern Grill, and Gilligan’s Restaurant.  Thank you for making life easier for us.  These are only a few of the local establishments that have definitely secured this mom’s business.