Our top Netflix shows for under 5s 

By ‘our’ I mean shows my kids will ask for and that I condone. There are some shows I try get them to watch that they are not interested in and then shows they beg for that I don’t agree with. 

  1. Doc McStuffins. Who doesn’t love Doc McStuffins, with her stay at home dad, working mom and supporting characters who have their own personalities. In case you haven’t seen it before, it’s an animated show about a little girl who fixes her toys in each episode one of the toys needs her assistance. I love that there is a princess who wants to save the knight and a big lamb who just wants to be a girly princess. Each episode has a good lesson to learn about interacting with others or understanding your feelings. 
  2. The Wiggles. We may have just immigrated to Australia but my kids already think Sydney is their home. With four lead characters, three males and one female, a dinosaur, octopus and pirate who all sing and dance it’s musically orientated with a story line which runs through the episode. It’s a great show for little kids, my one year old stands and dances on the lounge floor throughout. There are lessons in each episode too, hand washing, teeth brushing etc. My three year old has just decided he doesn’t mind it.
  3. Superwhy is all about a reading. It features a little boy superhero who, together with some friends, fixes classic stories to deliver child friendly / happy endings. It is animated and good for pre-schoolers. 
  4.  Magic School Bus is old school animation. In each episode Miss Frizzle shrinks the school bus so that the kids can go on an interactive learning experience, in one episode they go into a classmates body to see why he has the flu. It’s a lovely show focused on learning. 
  5. Leap Frog: Let’s go to school is very simple in terms of animation and it’s lead characters – two twin frogs – but it’s tops when it comes to teaching and education. It focuses on educating the kids with numbers, letters aznd also helping address issues they may have eg fear of going to school, sharing. The only downside is that this is 30 minutes which is quite long.
  6. Sophia The First. For those who have never watched Sophia, a little girl from the village becomes a princess when her mom marries the King. In each episode she learns a new lesson based on common virtues eg helping others and being humble. She’s kind, polite and helpful, all in all a good character. 
  7. Sid the Science Kid is a Jim Henson animated show (digital puppetry). While Sid must be in school his inquisitiveness appeals to my 3 year old – like my son, Sid has lots of questions, what things are, how they work, where things are, why things do what they do… You know the questions you get asked a million times a day. 

Other shows my kids love which are okay conceptually and which are non-frightening for under 4s are:

– Octonauts

– Jake and the neverland pirates 

– Puffin Rock

– Sarah and Duck

– Masha and Bear (dubbed from Russian I think) 

– Dinosaur train 

– Curious George

– Ben and Holly’s Little Kingdom 

– Paw Patrol

– Blaze and the Monster Machines 
Most shows nowadays have educational consultants on board to make sure there is good content so anything in the above list should add some value to your child’s life, aside from just letting you get the washing folded or dishwasher packed. And… To be honest, you can’t discount that these shows help develop their imagination and vocabulary. 

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Chinamans Beach, Mosman 

Mosman has got it’s fair share of gorgeous beaches – Balmoral Beach / Clifton Gardens but this beach is so far my favourite in the area. Quietly tucked away and generally empty this is such a gorgeous place and it’s perfect for kids. 

  
To get to Chinmans Beach you should aim for Roscherville Reserve or McLean Crescent, Mosman 2088. You’ll find yourself winding down a hill, don’t worry – this means your going the right way. You know you’re in the right spot when you enter a car park with the park on your left and in front of you and houses on your right. 

   
The beach is just beyond the Reaerve. 

  
In order to get to the beach you have to walk through Roscherville Reserve. There is parking along Roscherville Reserve which varies – some areas are 3 hours, tickets, while others are unticketed 2 hour spots. 

There are a number of entrances on to the beach (from the Reserve) through the trees making you feel like Alice going down the rabbit hole or the Narnia children going through the cupboard… 

   

 Chinamans Beach is in Middle Harbour safely tucked away from any serious winds or waves. The 250m of sand is soft and clear and great for digging mini-swimming pools and building sandcastle. We have two 1 year olds with us on the day we visited and they loved every second. While Sydney was a little bit windy on the day we visited we were shelter from it and felt like we were in the middle of summer. 

This is the second time our family has been to this beach and on both occasions it was virtually empty. There were more people in the water, boating or stand-up paddling than there were on the beach. 

  
Dogs are not allowed on the beach but they can run wild in the Reserve so make sure you keep your eye on your little on as you walk through to the beach. 

There are bathrooms in the Reserve which you walk past on the way to the beach so they’re relatively close by. 

There aren’t any cafes or shops by so you will need to take your own snacks and drinks. 

If you’ve got little ones with you make sure to point out the little hermit crabs, these can provide at least 1 minute of intense interest 🙂 

How to host a playdate… The beginner’s guide. 

There are two types of play dates – play dates where the parents are friends and the kids are forced to forge a friendship the other type is where the kids are friends and the parents are secondary to the interaction. You will know the difference because in the second scenario you’ll be referred to as “soandso’s dad”. 

This post is about how to handle the second type of play date, the ‘hi, nice to meet you, welcome into my home stranger, please let this work and be fun.’

We have only just entered the foray of the second scenario and I personally had NO clue what to do. I’m still fumbling through it like a over-attentive waitress – forcing things at the kids and then tidying up immediately in case the parent I’ve just met thinks I’m useless or messy. 

The first taste we had of this was when my son was 18 months old and it ended with my son dropping his nappy (I didn’t know he could take his nappy off) and showing the little girl who was visiting and her shocked mom his private parts. He then made a break from my grasp and ran out to the people painting our house and showed them how he’d learnt to wee standing up. Needless to say, I was mortified and we didn’t have another play date for a very very long time. 

So now I’m back in the game. Somehow I won the lottery and have been invited to other mom’s houses for the play date. This is fantastic. This way I got to see what they do and how they manage the situation. 

I’m also embarrassed to admit (for those of you reading this who know me) that I also siddled up to my son’s day care teacher one day and whispered ‘I’ve been invited to a play date what do I do? Do I go, do I drop and run, do I take something’. She laughed at me and made a few suggestions, I’ll include these below. 

What I’ve learnt about play dates for pre-schoolers is this: 

  • For the first playdate you go with. I did not know this 🙂 
  • Mornings are best because the kids get far too excited and then get worn out from the excitement before the play dates began.  
  • If you don’t know the mum at all maybe meet at a park weather permitting so the kids have the option to play or not play depending on their moods and you don’t feel motified if they ignore each other for a bit. 
  • Healthy snacks are generally available – fruit, crackers, yoghurt, muffins. 
  • Have one thing that you know will take up some time, either an activity (play doh, drawing, swimming, car track, cup cake decorating).
  • If it’s over lunch make sure you know what the child can or cannot eat. 
  • If parking near your place is confusing explain it to the mom coming.
  • I always take something for the mom or the kids but that’s just me.
  • Take some pics to commemorate and then swap with the other mom. 
  • The TV isn’t on at first 🙂 some moms do have music on though.
  • Have a place in mind where you can sit and chat to the mom but still have the kids playing, it’ll make it easier to connect to the mom and keep an eye on the kids. 

Don’t feel bad if the kids have a few moments where they decide they hate each other – it’ll pass and they’ll be mates again soon. 

  

A “pulled elbow” lands our baby in hospital

To stop our daughter landing on her face in the shops I grabbed onto her arm. It was meant to stop her from falling and hurting herself and instead she hurt herself and landed up needing to go to hospital. 

Our little girl’s lower arm (the radius bone) had slipped out of its normal position at the elbow joint. 

We knew something was wrong because 1) she was crying and 2) was keeping her hand and fingers still (which is very unusual for any active 1 year old) and 3) wouldn’t use her hand for anything, even to take her favourite toy or food. 

As she was in her car seat, hadn’t napped properly and is teething the crying is normal. We decided to get home, get her out her car seat and see if she would take anything offered to that hand. She wouldn’t. 

Off my husband went to the emergency department of our local hospital, Sydney’s Royal North Shore. We know this hospital to be great with kids and adults alike. And it was a Saturday afternoon so of course we couldn’t get a doc appointment. 

My husband was seen, after a while (thank goodness he had the foresight to pack formula and he favourite toy to keep her calm) and the doctor knew immediately what was wrong – she’d pulled her radius out of her elbow. She didn’t even need an X-Ray. 

  
According to the doc that saw our little girl, it is a very common injury amongst children under the age of 5. So common, that this hospital sees 2 – 3 of these injuries daily (again, according to the doc that saw our daughter). 

It took a second for her to roll her arm round and pop it back into the elbow. As soon as he had done it, she was off to touch all the toys with the hand she hadn’t wanted to use.

It’s such a quick fix and a common injury but it still is horrible and unsettling because you don’t know what is wrong. 

We were given literature from the hospital (evidentially obtained from Kids Health Info – RCH, Melbourne). I want to share this so if this happens to your child you know what to look for and what it is so you don’t panic. 

  • A pulled elbow can be caused by holding a child’s hand when they fall or if a child is lifted by the hand   
  • It is a common injury in children under 5 (after 5 the ligament and joints are stronger).
  • In most cases your child will cry straight away.
  • Signs of the injury is your child not wanting to use the arm or having the arm hanging by their side. 
  • The longer the injury has endured (the longer it has been out) the longer it will take to recover. 
  • A pulled elbow will not cause permanent damage.
  • Some children are more susceptible to this.
  • This injury can happen more than once. 
  • PREVENTION: don’t pick your children up by their lower arms or wrists. 

This morning our little one is back to normal and seemingly completely fine but we’re just extra careful with her hand, wrist and arm. 

Pregnancy, Babies and Children’s Expo 2016, Sydney

Today the kids and I ventured to the Sydney Olympic Park (yay, we had never been there before and wow, it is cool – like a whole mini town within a town but I digress, back to the Expo). I cannot imagine there being anything a parent would need that was not at this Expo today. It was pretty thorough.

This is going to be very brief as I want you to be able to get through it quickly, if you are going this weekend. I am only going to touch on the logistics, things I saw, picked up and where the kids played oh and most important – who is handing out balloons 😉

First up, logistics. If you have no clue how to get to Sydney Olympic Park their website is pretty good on directions (click here for a link directly to the Sydney Olympic Park directions page ). I just put Australia Drive, Sydney Olympic Park into my GPS and go there okay. The actual venue is Sydney Showground Exhibition Centre.

The website and your ticket, if you already have one says to park at P5 by the time I got there just before 10:30 (it only starts at 10) the parking was full as was the one just a bit further down the road. What is nice though is that there are walkways and ramps everywhere so it is very easy to navigate with a pram.

The capacity of the P5 parking is a good indicator of how busy it was today (Friday) and how busy it will be over the weekend but the space is huge and there was still space to wheel the pram around and space inside the play areas for the kids not to be overrun. There were a few places that had some serious queues and congestion – the Huggies nappy stand was the first stand we walked into after the entrance and there was a huge queue for some reason.

When you enter, make sure to pick up a wrist band for your child which you can put your phone number on should your child go wandering.

There is an excellent variety of exhibitors from Jalna yoghurt handing out samples to Tressilian handing out information brochures, NUK, Avent, Love to Dream swaddles, Priceline, various photographers and baby boutiques. There are vendors selling prams, car seats and cots and anything else you would need. If you are pregnant or a brand new mom this Expo would be great for you. The only problem is that there is SO much, it can be overwhelming and take all day. We could only be there for the morning as my children decided to stage a full-blown protest / meltdown.

Where did we stop to play – this is the ALL IMPORTANT question if you are taking the kids with you:

  1. Imagination Play Area – castle you can colour in, chalk and chalk boards, hop scotch, dress-up, play play shop and safe soft play areas. img_3370-1
  2. Nurofen has some iPads set up for the kids to colour in on. img_3373-1
  3. Gym-baroo has a circuit set up for little ones to play on. Sorry no pics, my son was too busy yelling about the yoghurt sample having ended.
  4. S-26 Has a stunning stand where the kids can play, listen to a story, colour in or pose for a photo. My littlest loved this.
  5. Golden Ridge Farm has brought some little animals including chickens, ducklings, goats and sheep. You dont have to pay for this (well we didn’t so I hope you dont have to 🙂 ). This is located outside the hall at the exit.

Next most important question – who is handing out balloons: I got balloons from two different sponsors: s-26 and 1300 Home GP.

The reason I dealt with the two sections above first is because you can’t do anything when the kids need to get some energy out so planning your day around having a kid friendly stop every couple of stands means you will be able to get more done.

Now, where did I get to stop and what did we pick up:

  1. Cetaphil gave us some great samples – hand wipes, body wash and daily lotion. We have just started using their body wash and I really like it so I am keen to try out their other products.
  2. Bubs has an impressive stand complete with two tiny tiny goats. All their organic food is on display but you dont need to buy it right away as you can get it at Coles.
  3. We bought the littlest some gorgeous hair clips and alice bands from Kaylee Rose Creations. I cannot wait to get her to wear them and neither can she! They were so pretty, I picked up some extras as birthday presents.
  4. Nanny2U is a company I had not come across so I had to stop and pick up some info and enter a competition to have a night of ‘care’.
  5. Angel Gowns are one of the companies that make gowns for little babies who pass away. Over 4000 gowns have been donated to hospitals, funeral homes and families allowing their precoius gifts to be beautifully dressed.
  6. Nurofen for the standard dosing information brochure.
  7. S-26 Here I signed up for their mum’s club because I feed my kids S-26 Gold and their play area was lovely.
  8. Swim Australia was a must to get information on swimming. living in sydney you cannot ignore how much water your child will be exposed to, either in your home, at school or when out with friends or at someone’s home.
  9. Jalna yogurt had samples upon samples of their delicious yoghurt.
  10. Aussie gave us a mini football which the kids loved.
  11. Tresillian had plenty of brochures on a number of topics and a fridge magnet with their contact details. I think they thought i was a mum in need 🙂
  12. GymbaROO and BabyROO let us sign up for a free class.
  13. NibblyBits for a teething necklace and some jewellery – I cannot speak better of these lovely ladies who helped me out with my very hungry and tired 3 year old. Not only do i love their necklaces and bangles but they are nice people which makes it all the better to support them.

Additionally I would have liked to stop at:

  1. Auskin Sheepskin – want to find out about the pram liner given we are off to the snow this year
  2. Baby Mum-Mum Rice Cakes  – my baby loves these
  3. Britain Advisory Centre – need some advice on car seats but will have to revert to my faithful email antics
  4. Children’s Panadol – they have the best teethers
  5. Huggies – my kids wear these nappies and we go through millions so who doesn’t like a freebie but I was not going to stand in the queue
  6. Love to Dream – I have heard tons about their stuff
  7. Philips AVENT – needed some more dummies (sssh, dont tell my mother)
  8. Small print Silver Keepsakes Jewellery – combines my favourite things – my kids and shiny things 🙂

Last notes:

  • Parking is $5 an hour and you can only buy hours.
  • In case your kids are going nuts, there is an ice-cream stand outside 🙂
  • There are a few cafes you can eat at in the food stalls inside or outside aren’t to your liking.
  • I did see a package babysitting area where you can leave all your parcels to pick up later but I am not sure of the specifics.
  • There are ATMs although most places seemed to take card.
  • As with any good expo, there are changing stations and feeding areas.

GOOD LUCK AND ENJOY!!!

 

Explorer’s Playgroup, North Sydney

The littelest and I headed off to the North Sydney Playgroup to discover what fun could be had. We found the answer to be lots! When I showed her brother the photos (rookie mistake because he got super jealous) he demanded we show him this ‘new fun place’. 
Located in the North Sydney Civic Centre the address online all point to 220 Miller Street but I’m not sure that’s a exact address. Below is a map of where to find the Civic Centre but it is a large area which isn’t where you want to park if you are driving. 

  
Your best bet is to actually aim for the Ridge Street Car park as the second level of the car park takes you straight onto a level walkway directly to the Civic Centre (the pic below is taken of the car park from the inside of the playground and where you would walk to get to where you need to be. 

However we had a few issues with the car park which I will get to later. 

  
Ridge Street Car Park is situate at James Place, North Sydney and is well signposted so you won’t get lost. As above, if you have a pram you want to park on the second level if you can if you’re pram-free you can walk up the steps from the bottom level if you come out the entry and turn right walking to the back of the carpark you will find where you need to be. 

If you park somewhere random and you don’t know where to go aim for the big lawn outside the Civic Centre or the Stanton Library and you will see where to go because of the moms all heading in that direction. 

The cost is $5 per baby under 18 months and $10 for kids 18 months plus. You can pay on a play by play basis and don’t need to pay for 5 or 10 visits at a time like you have to at Crows Nest Playgroup. 

There is a big outdoor area which is that soft spring stuff except for a small patch which is sandy as its a ‘natural’ play space with logs, timber planks and rocks for climbing on or over. 

  
  

the natural play area
  

Outside is generally a ‘free-for-all’ play area where you can play with whatever you want or do whatever it is you’re keen on. There is a lovely cubby house, a deck with foam blocks, climbing frames with ropes and slides, lots of little cars and trucks, a giant sandpit and a smaller play set for littlies with slides, a tunnel to crawl through and a swing bridge. 

  

play set / climbing frame for bigger kids
 
 
the smaller play set
 

Additionally there is a painting set up where the kids can show off their painting skills. Thankfully the littlest didn’t see this otherwise we would have both been covered in paint. 

  
Inside there are different rooms to explore – there is a baby soft play area, a play-doh station and a themed room which changes (I think it may be weekly) when we went it was themed as a grocery store. 

  
What is quiet nice is that there are also group activities which you can participated in, or ignore, depending on your child’s interests at that exact time – there is singing / dancing and later in the morning story time. As littlest had never explored this fun place before she was far to busy trying to throw herself down the slide to be involved in such activities. 

The playgroup session runs from 10am to 12:30 on Mondays to Thursday’s during school term. The website can be accessed by clicking here.

The website for the playgroup states “Parking: Discounted parking for Playgroup users is available in the Ridge Street car park. Simply bring your token from the car park and swipe it when you register for each session” but this was a bit of an issue for me and the moms I went with who parked there. The normal cost (not discounted) for 2.5 hours would be $14.10 – I still don’t know what the discounted rate would be – but it appears there is a problem with the validation system at the playgroup and it has historically not worked. This meant that we were stuck in the parking with a man shouting at us through the payment machine, not ideal when you’ve got an exhausted little one. 

I don’t know many moms who can get by without some sustenance 🙂 So we were sure to check this out. There are a few cafes nearby where you can grab a coffee and muffin to keep you going through the session or to enjoy afterwards on the lawns outside the Centre. 

How I survive sleeping with my feisty kids 

Anyone else’s children climb in their bed in the middle of the night and then spread themselves out with their feet on your face… 

Sometimes I also get to sleep in the double bed in my baby’s room… Lucky me – not! We put a double bed in her room for when guests visit and then pushed it up against the wall so its safe for the baby to sleep (stay awake) in.  

  
FYI – this is not about whether sleeping with your kids is a good idea 🙂

  1. Have lots of pillows otherwise yours will get ‘acquired’ by the bed invader. 
  2. Sleep with your arm over your face so that kicking feet don’t break your nose. 
  3. Remove heavy objects from the bed – chances are these will be found and used to wake you up. 
  4. Keep lights, more specifically light switches, faaaaar out of reach. 
  5. Get a long long duvet / comforter / blanket to cover your face when the light switch is found and used to simulate a disco. 
  6. Keep a jersey and warm pants in arms length so you can keep warm when all the blankets are unceremoniously kicked off.
  7. Rid yourself of anything remotely interesting – earrings, necklace, jersey with a zip – these will become objects of desire and reasons to stay awake. 
  8. Cover clocks and hide watches so you don’t know that you’re wide awake at 4am after being kicked in the face. 
  9. Keep your eyes closed, just keep your eyes closed. If you open one eyelid the day would have started 🙂

Best of luck!! 

Belaroma Coffee Centre, Manly Vale 

We stumbled upon Belaroma Coffee Centre completely by accident and boy are we glad we did. The outside gives a glimpse to the wonderland inside – a wonderland of good coffee complimented by good food. 

Situated at 75 Kenneth Road Manly Vale / Balgowlah (Apple maps refers to it as Balgowlah but the website says Manly Vale) it is just off Condamine road. If you know Manly Vale and know where the Coles and Woolworths are you’ll be able to find this place easily. 

However, the entrance is on Roseberry Street, driving East down Kenneth you’ll want to turn right onto Roseberry and the cafe will be on your right and the parking entrance just after the cafe. 

  

There is street parking but also parking behind the coffee shop which seems sufficient as we arrived during the breakfast / brunch rush and still got a parking. 

You know it’s going to be a goody when you walk into the outside area and it’s smart / neat and smells amazing. The inside is even better, I just loved the decor and could spend hours in the place reading and drinking coffee. 

  
The menu caters for breakfasts and lunches as the cafe is only open until 3:30 and the kitchen closing at 2:30. 

There is a specific section of the menu dedicated to kids and the baby chino on offer is huge! (On the kids note: The space is big enough to get a pram into and there was a ramp for pram or wheelchair access and there are baby chairs.)

It’s another one of those order and pay at the counter type of place but there is some type of service and the service was good. The kitchen was very busy though and we had to wait some time before our food arrived (the kids and dad had to go for two walks while waiting for food).

I had the French toast which was beautifully presented and a massive portion. The flavors were awesome but just a bit too sweet. You can see from the picture below that the littlest loved the French toast too. It was so so so pretty! 

  
Husband had the egg roll which he loved and the kids had… you guessed it, a croissant. The croissant comes with jam but it is a superb croissant, I’ve had hundreds of croissant left overs and this was one of the best if not the best I have ever had. 

  
The back of the menu is dedicated to coffee and I’m not sure I completely understood it but it looks cool 🙂 Being completely dedicated to coffee,  you can also pick up some of Belaroma’s famous coffee to take home or some cool coffee cups. 

Monday to Friday the Coffee Center is open from 6:30am and on weekends from 7:00am. It’s great for a quick cup of coffee and a muffin alone or an autumn / winter brunch.

I know it’s a funny way to end but I just wanted you to know that there are on-site toilets, always important when dealing with a young potty-trainee 🙂 

 

Pablo & Rusty, The Plaza in Lane Cove

Took the family down to Lane Cove to meet a friend and check out the Village that everyone raves about and it was lovely lovely. The Village just comes alive on a Saturday morning, with families everywhere. What a cool place to be on an Autumn morning with the family.

Spoilt for choice there are loads of places to eat, have a coffee or grab some freshly baked rolls. We settled on Pablo & Rusty due to its location and reputation of delivering good coffee and food. This is one of several locations in Sydney.

You can find Pablo & Rusty at The Plaza, 13 Burns Bay Road, Lane Cove, the pin in the picture below is where you’ll find them. I would aim to park in the big council parking on Rosenthal Avenue – coming east down Burns Bay Road you’ll turn left into Rosenthal and then you will see the car park on your right. My educated 🙂

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Pablo & Rusty is close to the green patch in the Village, the astro turf covered by a shade cloth which allows kids to have a bit of a run and sitting outside you can watch them while you have a coffee and a bite to eat. There isn’t anything that is specifically catered to for children nor do they really provide for children but they don’t need to, i just made sure I had some back up food for the littlest in case she decided today was the day she would not eat big girl food.

It very chilled, the type of place you order at the counter and take a number back to your table. We sat on high chairs around upturned oil barrels (my three year old thought it was awesome). My kids love croissants – which you will know if you follow me on twitter or Facebook – so that’s what we and it was really good. Dad had a bacon and egg roll which he hasn’t stopped raving about so I reckon that was good too.

IMG_3020-1

Today in the Village was extra special because there was music – a band, a freaking band! My kids love music and a bit of a dance so this was just too much fun to handle. A place to kick a ball, croissants and then music to dance to. Needless to say they were asleep by the time they hit their car seats.

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Pablo & Rustys Lane Cove is open every day until 4pm: from 7am during the week and on Saturdays and 8am on Sundays.

The pictures I’ve taken of the Village aren’t great – my apologies I will do better next time 🙂

Hammond Playground in Beauchamp Park, Chatswood 

Last week we ventured to Hammond playground in Beauchamp park, Chatswood. I’m really glad we went back for a second look after I’d driven past it without the kids when lost one day. 
 
 

Beauchamp Park is quite big itself and includes the playground, a sporting field (used for dog training during the week), a rose garden (did not see this), basketball court and a spring garden which I believe is under restoration.

  
The point is, this is a big park so don’t just put them name in your GPS and hope to find the playground, you may not.

The address I would use is Beauchamp Avenue or Nicholson Street, Chatswood as you can then park along those roads, or Darling Street. The only problem with Beauchamp, other than the fact that it is a one way, is that the development in the park means you have to walk to the end of Beauchamp to get into the playground via Darling. 

   

There are plenty of paved paths accessing the playground and throughout the playground so it is completely pram and wheelchair friendly. I suppose this also means that you could take a scooter or bicycle around the perimeter of the park but you would have to be careful of kids running around. 

 
The major problem with this playground is that there are no enclosed areas if you have wanderer you have to be very careful. While the playground is away from the road by some distance it is always a worry in the back of a mum’s mind I reckon. 
Hammond is a “Natural” playground like Hallstrom which makes sense because they are both the responsibility of Willoughy Council. Being a Natural Playground means there are rocks to climb, trees to run around, leaves to run through and plenty of shade.

There are plenty of things to play on: 

– 2 Swing sets 

– Massive sandpit 

– Double slide for siblings 

– Row boat

– Climbing frame 

– Those dangerous spinning things 

  
There are a number of picnic benches, open spaces to sit, BBQ facilities but no bathrooms close by. I believe that there are some next to the basket ball courts (as I was told). 

There are also some strange things like a cow chair (it’s called a “Cowch” which is pretty funny) next to a sculpted dog and pair of boots. We realized that you can step inside the boots which is lots of fun. There are also some fancy sculptures, fancy according to the council’s website. 

  
You could definitely make a proper visit out of this park by bringing a picnic lunch or tea helped by the fact that there is 2 hour parking around the playground with a few exception.

It was a good experience and we will be back!