Hi I’m Margaret the founder of local charity CaringKids! I live in Clovelly with my husband Nick and 2 children. I love experiencing the unique character of all the Eastern Suburbs villages and meeting locals making a difference in our community.
Where and how long have you lived in Sydney’s east?
I grew up in Sydney and have lived in the Eastern Suburbs for 8 years.
Three words that describe what it’s like to live in the eastern suburbs?
Beautiful, fun, vibrant.
How many children?
2 children, Patrick (8) and Sara (11). Being able to experience all the things there are to do with kids throughout all the different stages definitely keeps me young at heart!
Varna Park, it’s big enough to kick a footy around, has a playground for the kids, and is close to home. Burrows Park has the most spectacular view. The Bronte beach playground and flying fox at Bernie Park is always fun. At Centennial Park every visit is a new adventure, there is so much to do and see, bike riding, playgrounds, exploring the gardens, no matter how many visits, there’s always something new to discover.
I have to say Clovelly. Whether you take a swim, climb the rocks with the kids, or take in the view on a coastal walk, I always feel good being there.
Favourite kid friendly cafe:
We’ve enjoyed breakfast and treats with the kids at Clodeli over the years. It’s nice to sit on the outdoor tables on the weekends. Don’t leave without one of their giant home-made cookies.
Favourite Coffee Spot:
Village on Cloey makes the perfect coffee every time. The staff are friendly, the atmosphere is always good, and if you have the time for a pit stop, the food is yummy too. I’m also a regular at Panivore in Pagewood, great coffee and excellent service.
Favourite date night place:
The Spot at Randwick. Lots of great places to choose from, there’s something special about this little pocket.
Where in the east have you yet to explore and would like to?
I’d love to explore the Malabar Headlands and the Boora Pont walking track that opened last year. This has been on the to do list for a while.
What would you like to see improve in the eastern suburbs?
It would be great if there were more family friendly music events for kids and families to enjoy together.
Favourite Local Shop:
Live This at the Spot in Randwick. I always find just the right gift for friends and family here. I like to pop in and look around on the way to a movie at the Ritz or after dinner.
Favourite wet weather location:
Catching a movie, there’s lots of options for local cinemas nearby or braving the shops at Westfield together. If that’s all too much, Netflix and popcorn at home is always a winner!
Favourite Local family Weekend Activity?
Centennial Park bike park, heading to the beach or catching up with friends and family. The kids also enjoy having their friends come over.
Work or SAHM? I’ve done both over the last 11 years. Right now, I’m working running a charity
I founded locally, CaringKids. I work from our office, the CaringKids Toy Workshop, and from home. I can be flexible which really helps me with school drop-offs and pick-ups, kids sports and other activities.
CaringKids re-connect young carers to the joy and wonders of childhood by sending Joy Boxes packed with toys, games, puzzles and school stationery to children caring for a family member living with a disability or illness. I’m hosting a CaringKids Christmas Toy Appeal this year. Clovelly Community Bank in Clovelly and Dr Marjorie O’Neill, MP electorate office in Randwick are local drop-off points.
I’m also a member of Coogee Lions Club. We meet once a month at the Coogee Bay Hotel and it’s a great way to get involved in giving back in our community.
Nothing can really prepare you for the rollercoaster ride that is motherhood. Rather than advice, I think the best thing you can have in your mum toolkit is a network of friends or family who take the time to listen and support you, and with whom you can share the exhilarating, exhausting and hilarious experiences of motherhood together.
I enjoy the little things with my kids and the moments that make us smile or laugh together every day. This is the good stuff of life.