Best Sunday roasts for families with kids and a granny


We love Sunday roasts. It means we don’t have to cook, shop on a Sunday when shops are about to close early. 

We are still searching for the ideal place but we do have some gems, here our list, what are your favourites?

The Maynard

We have been here a couple of times with the kids and they are very family friendly. The booths are the nicest place to sit if there are four of you. If there are five i.e. a granny or an uncle there are bigger tables right at the back. The pencils for drawing are a bit blunt like most places so don’t rely on them to keep your little ones occupied bring your own or an iPad. You can get a table here quite early her and they don’t run out of roast beef like some places!

We love the adult roasts here they are lovely but we have made two mistakes for the kids so hopefully you won’t make the same. We ordered fish and chips, which the kids usually love (without the mushy peas) but they said they had fish goujons and they sounded like they would be ok. When they arrived the kids had a taste and promptly said they didn’t like them. We felt really guilty as we tucked into our lovely roasts. The next time we thought ok we won’t order them again lets get them the lovely kids roasts like ours we can’t go wrong. How wrong could we be with our fussy eater 6 year old. The roast beef and Yorkshire was firmly plonked on red cabbage. As soon as my son caught sight of this he was having none of it and I mean none of it not one morsel passed his lips. The early evening was ruined by us trying to tempt him to eat it to no avail. We scraped off the red cabbage and even got a side plate and re presented the food to him but no that was it. We then tried to play tough parents; you are not getting anything else tact, which always backfires. We were left with him not eating and being hungry before bed and cooking for him at home! 

I bumped into a friend who takes her kids there and I said does your son eat the roasts, she said no no never, it has red cabbage we get him sausage and mash! So next time we will go down the sausage and mash route, which is a shame as that is just about all he eats and we do like to change it now and then. Maybe The Maynard should rethink their roasts for kids and do a simpler version. The adult food is amazing.

A bit further a field – The Grove

Love The Grove it’s a bit out of Crouch End but well worth the visit if you want to stretch your eyes into countryside just out side of London. It’s about a 40 min drive and so worth it. We usually go to The Stables, sit outside if it is sunny or inside if it is nice. The roasts are AMAZING. They do mini fish and chips for the kids, say without mushy peas though if you want to keep a smile on your kids face. It’s not cheap but nice for Mothers Day or just a treat. They don’t have pens and stuff for kids and its a bit to formal for iPads – you can sneak a mobile phone play at the end but we are too concerned that our kids come across really badly so we try and make sure they eat and don’t play. Hard I know, think French kids and parents to keep you going! A walk outside on the way back to the car is lovely and the kids often run across the golf course! If you can stay there too they have an outstanding kids club! A brilliant treat, believe me.  You can only book a table at 6pm here!

The Victoria Stakes

You can have your roast in the front which is more like a pub or in the vast open space at the back like a huge roomy greenhouse. We went for the latter, thinking it best to keep our children away from ‘normals’ which was a shame as the front is really lovely. Our fault. The back is really nice too. You can get in quite early for dinner. They have a kids menu, no crayons or paper. I think we were quite conservative with the kids, fish and chips or sausage and mash. This place is really good for large groups of people with kids as there is a lot of space at the back. The staff are lovely and very accommodating.

St Johns

One of our favourites, amazing food but pricey. The don’t open until 6 and they don’t have a kids menu as such or crayons or paper. Don’t let that put you off its fantastic. We get a booth at the side, which can accommodate 5 easily. Do book as it get’s pretty busy and especially for that seat. They don’t do a kids menu but do kids portions. To be honest we get side plates and give them some of ours! It’s not the most child friendly but probably one of the best. Child friendly if you go early. If they have sticky toffee pudding on the menu go for it, it’s rarely on and it comes off the chalkboard early on as it is the best ever!

Villiers Terrace

This is lovely. A bit more formal not kids entertainment i.e. crayons. However the roasts are lovely, lovely Yorkshire puddings. We went here for Mothers Day. They have a brilliant kids menu with all the staples i.e. sausages and pasta. Love it here. Nice for a treat.

St James 

I haven’t been here but a friend went and said it was the best roast she has had in Crouch End, she went with young kids. They used to have an entertainer but not any more but it’s amazing she said. So it’s the next place to try!Image



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I’M lOVIN IT – Crouch End

I haven’t written for a long time. Here’s a quick post about current things I love about Crouch End.

Morleys butchers and their frozen hamburgers, off a barbecue they taste better than Byron! Sorry veggies.
Virgin Gym, a crèche, brilliant personal trainers, great classes – Zumba with Leary – friendly people (not all!) – what more can you want! My kids spend at least 6 hours a week in the crèche and the staff are lovely.
Budgens, having been irritated by it, I now love it and the veggies have a much better taste than M&S and Waitrose.
Londis, the corner shop that sells Organic milk, was sold out over half term – that’s Crouch End for you!
Dunnes iced fingers, say no more.
The library – great DVDs for kids.
Red Shoes, you know you love them.
The laundrette in Weston Park, wash and iron a duvet, sheet and 2 pillowcases for £8.50 on the same day! Hotel feel stylee.
Bike shops, blow up pram wheels and space hoppers.
Parks – Stationers, feels like you are in the countryside.
Wow Japanese is fantastic and Melange is amazing.
The W5 hoppa bus, I vowed I would never use it as it seems lazy and now I’m there waving my hand!
Margaret in Weston Parks newsagent.
Chatty people in the streets.
Calmness and fresh air.
Nice houses to look at.
Coffee Circus coffee, Gails coffee.
So much to like!
What do you like?

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Park Etiquette

I spend most of my time in parks. I have a 2.5 year old and a 3.5 year old. I moved from a park in a very deprived part of London to a rather affluent Crouch End one.  I don’t really know anyone in the park so I can make observations in between pushing the swings and stopping Loretta chasing girls with sticks and John John running off into the bushes on his own to pee!

I find the more middle class park the most unfriendly perhaps because there is no sandpit to sit around and the kids seem more aggressive, they run more freely ready to bash other kids while their parents from the nearby school sit around in tight circles gossiping pretending not to see.

I have had all sorts of things happen to me whilst in the park from an alcoholic locking all the parents in the park with the kids in and throwing the key in bush to an altercation with a mum from the local estate who’s child kept hitting Loretta  and running off with her pram, when I took the toy that was causing the problem away a whole group of them turned up bad mouthing me! All sorts really!

Here is my list of do’s and don’t, perhaps you can add more?

1. when coming into the park close the gate. The amount of parents I have seen doing this is infuriating. I usually close it straight away. The last park was next to a road and Loretta ran out once into it! Parents do this more so with babies and older kids. I once closed it so much that in the end I just shouted “please can you close the gate!” instead of getting up and was perhaps a bit rude to one young mum of a baby. I got chatting to the lovely gentle woman with her baby on a swing and found out she was the features editor for the Independent magazine! Just goes to show you should be nice to all people.

2. When you are pushing your kids on the swing and people are waiting for their go, don’t stay on for ages ie more than 5 mins even if you child insists on staying. I recently saw two women swinging their kids gassing away oblivious to the begging eyes of parents around them. Having said this if you are waiting let the parent swinging the child have time to do so.

Something that made me write this tonight was when I was in the park this evening the only person just putting Loretta and John onto the swings, squashing their bodies in and their gangly legs when a mother with her baby in a pram walked into the park and quickly over and stood right next to me staring at me, just as I had put the kids in! WEIRD.

I said nicely at least I thought I did “I’ve just put them in (she saw!) and I’m going to be a few minutes”. Instead of replying she marched off in a huff and kept looking over! I thought maybe I have blood running down my face or something – very odd. When one of the swings became free she put her kid in and ignored my smiles and my noisy kids. All very strange!

3. When in  a sandpit share your buckets and spades and most kids won’t have them and there will be a time when you turn up with out your and your kids will grab a spade and start digging immediately in a frenzy.  Even if they are not playing with them don’t tidy them take them when you are going home.

4. Get your kid a scooter, they will want everyone elses no matter how young they are. That goes for prams and bikes. Loretta and John have them and a little girl kept going to play with Lorettas the other day, it is fairly new and she is very possessive about it as any two-year old would be. Her bearded hippy father kept saying annoyingly every time she came over to collect her pram ” hey it’s the scooter police, hey it’s the scooter police” as if my child was creating the problem! He was so irritating!

5. Babies on slides come first, always grab your 1/2/3-year-old off as the will charge down, let the slow baby and it’s over-anxious parents go first!

6. If your kids hits someone tell them to say sorry and acknowledge the other parent. Loretta was smacked by a much older boy the other day and her mother was too busy in a chat to tell him off, in fact she pretended she didn’t see!

7. Some parents care if their kids get dirty so don’t let your child rub a dirty stick on them or run after them with a dirty stick! I don’t mind my kids looking like savages but I am in a minority.

Think that is about it, have you got anymore? And don’t forget to CLOSE THAT GATE!


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New Shoes

Budgens, Waitrose, M&S. Crouch End is very expensive.

I used to shop in Tesco and I am shocked by the prices of good old Crouch. For example I thought I would go to the fish shop to buy a Sea Bass. I asked for a fish large enough for two people and the fish monger pulled out a large bass and I said great thanks please can you fillet it and how much is it?

How much do you think it was?


Much more expensive than my Tesco fillets for £3.95. Anyway, after a disastrous morning with a stubborn child a missing pram we went to my guilty pleasure Red Shoes selling the most gorgeous shoes of mainly Scandinavian origin. I love Scandinavian clothes for kids especially for boys as they are bright, playful well made and funky compared to the old men’s style of clothes available here such as brown cords, brown shoes etc. In Red Shoes they sell beautifully made bright shoes for boys. One summer I brought the most beautiful pair of Turquoise sandals for John John and this year he was wearing navy European style sandals all summer, we have brought cool boots there and fantastic purple mini boots with flowers on for Loretta.


They are not cheap! I went in today with let’s have a look around and go and left £160 poorer and in shock. My son walked out in a pair of dark turquoise Little Pet shoes and  Loretta well she refused to try on any shoes apart from a gorgeous pair of bright blue Angulus boots with silver stars on. At the cost of £96 I am well and truly a prat and a sucker. I am in debt and buying clothes for them on Next online. I also need to buy her a pair of shoes as the boots are too bloomin hot to wear to nursery!

Oh well.

That is a record for me.


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Hello Crouch End

Hello Crouch End!

I have moved from Crouch End  and this is my blog about my experiences, great places to go, things to do and general chat.

A bit about me.

I grew up in Crouch End and went to the local schools, everything has changed since then mind you. I have moved back nearly 20 years later from an economic deprived yet fantastic hood to a socially aspiring and wealthy urban village! I have two small kids, I’m self-employed and love a good chat and gossip.

I’m hoping to embrace the community for myself and my family and find new friends and this is a comment on how it is going and my thoughts and observations.


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