Babychino please… How coffee has changed our lifestyles

I am going to share a secret about coffee. It’s something I’ve always had a hunch about: There is a lot more to coffee than just the beans you see in the bag you just purchased. Coffee has become a lifestyle habit; a way of doing and going about the everyday tasks of living in this busy world we find ourselves in. Particularly in terms of parenthood, the babychino lifestyle reflects the way parenting has progressed and adapted with the changes in technology, urban planning, economy and education in the 21st century.

Do you remember the 70s? If 1970 and the decade that preceded it means kindergarten and orange laminex then you probably won’t remember the coffee or the lack thereof. Back in the 70’s if you invited someone for a babychino they would probably think you were having an Italian themed baby shower.

Today the babychino play date is commonplace around Melbourne. In fact, there is even a café hidden away in the leafy suburb of Prahran which bears its namesake. Babies, toddlers and even school-aged kids seem to be so comfortable in a café these days it is hard to believe that 20 years ago parents would never have even thought about dragging along their rug rats to sit in a civilised meeting place. Coffee was certainly not a word that could be substituted for ‘lunch’, ‘meeting’, ‘break’, ‘escape’, ‘interview’ or ‘chat’ the way it can be today. There were places for adults and places for children. Life was kept in separate compartments, tidy and compact.

The evolution of the coffee break has changed everything, from the way we plan our day to the way we rear our children. Coffee has crept its way into everything from the arrangements we make with our friends to the ones we choose for our children. So even if they do not agree with the babychino lifestyle, pretty soon your little kid will not have a choice in the matter! Parents everywhere are making the decision to incorporate rather than separate. This means that babies need to fit in or suffer the consequences of a cranky mum who didn’t get to meet her friends for coffee and feel a little human again. On a more serious note, the babychino lifestyle says a lot about the important decision parents have made when faced with juggling work, social life and parenting. It says a lot about the mindset of parents who have found a way to challenge the isolation and monotony that often comes with raising a baby and have discovered ways to keep themselves in touch with other adults, with work and with the things they love.

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