Kids and adults alike will love this new cafe – Go West

Scandinavian interiors. High quality offerings. Smooth coffee. Spacious table seating. Outdoor play.

The perfect combination for delicious and hassle-free brunch date for four mamas and eight kids.

Eight kids?! When did that happen? In the blink of an eye we’ve got preschool aged kids plus four prams with toddlers in them, all of us wanting somewhere easy but pretty to eat and play.

Enter Go West Tuckshop and Eatery. A hot tip from one of our mothers group friends had us heading to the new Woodlea Estate as she said it was worth the trip (thanks Alison!). She was so right!

We played. We ate. We ogled beautiful display homes with huge his and her wardrobe spaces.

All in all it was a fabulous day out.

So fabulous in fact that we were back the next day practically inhaling their cheeseburger with bloody Mary aoili and fries! Daniel ordered the ham and cheese croissant and I patiently waited for his leftovers however I only got one bite! It was heaven…that creamy bechamel sauce.The menu is well rounded with something for everyone and a kids menu as well!

Where: 27 Woodlea blvd, Rockbank
When: Open 7 days a week. For opening hours visit their website here.
What: A gorgeous family friendly cafe. It totally made me want to go home and redecorate our home to get this same Scandinavian vibe. Wonderfully friendly and professional service, we ended up dining here two days in a row!

Fun Fact: The cafe is managed and owned by those behind the esteemed Melbourne restaurants of Entrecote and Second Home. Head west next time you’re after something delicious to eat and a playground to unleash the big kid inside. More pics of the playground can be found here!

It’s all in the details – potted herbs line the front entrance

Their amazingly mouthwatering cheeseburger! – grilled O’Connors, beef patty, Monterey Jack cheddar, Bloody Mary aioli, greens and pickles with frites
Piadini – tomato braised meatballs, bechamel, mozarella and spinach with a little salad
Veggie patches outside the land sales office

Powder room goals – display homes at the Woodlea estateI need this hanging set up in my laundry!

We want to play too! – Woodlea playground

We could see the tall tower from the highway calling us to play. As we got closer there were slides and flying foxes comfortably nestled among the beautifully landscaped playground. We could not get out of our cars any quicker!

This is one of the latest estates in Melbourne’s outer suburbs boasting a well-planned playground to entice home buyers to secure their own little piece of the world. The other space we enjoy visiting especially in the summer time is Werribee’s Riverwalk park.

What: Explore one of Melbourne’s latest playgrounds for some outdoor fun
Where: Just off Woodlea blvd in the Woodlea Estate west of Melbourne. An easy drive along the Western Highway turning right off the Leakes road exit.
When: All year round
Cost: Free
Features: Basketball ring, footy park, table tennis table, bbq’s, cafe (Go West Tuckshop and Eatery), flying foxes, slides, swings, exercise equipment, sand play, trampolines, tunnels and natural elements encouraging kids to use their imaginations
Age: Something for everyone. There are even two flying foxes, one of them has a seat with seatbelts to secure the younger ones
What to bring: Balls to play with the basketball ring, footy posts or table tennis table, a picnic or something for the bbq, a jacket during the winter months as it can get quite cold.
Fun Facts: There are currently only around five homes being occupied in the estate as this is published but land blocks have been selling so fast as each new stage opens, so we predict that this will quickly become a popular meeting place. The cafe next to the playground is run by a few business partners responsible for the restaurants Entrecote and Second Home in Melbourne and Eltham, no wonder our brunch and coffee was on point! A great partnership between the property developers and restaurant operators that if successful will be replicated in the later stages of the estate.Undercover BBQ and seating areaUs adults trying to get in on the swing actionSand play with pulleys, buckets and even a ride on digger, similar to the one at the Ron Barassi playground in the Docklands.Let the kids use their imagination to run around and enjoy the parkFresh and newAnd some exercise equipment for the adults!More sand play at the Woodlea land sales office

Bouncy holes surrounded by rubber surfacesThe letter of the day is…D for Daniel!

We ended up driving out here two days in a row that’s how much fun we had! – first day was with my mothers group and the next day Daniel wanted to take Daddy to show him the “big sandpit” and also to bring his bike and a basketball. I secretly wanted to come back to try the burger for lunch! It was amazing.

Here are some other playgrounds to visit if you want to spend some quality outdoor fun with the kids – Docklands, Yarraville, Werribee.

Have a great long weekend everyone -xx-

What are some of your favourite playgrounds?
Daniel would love to check them out!

Voyaging to Isla Nublar- Jurassic World

Jurassic World Melbourne reviewsJurassic World Melbourne Museum review

Jurassic World, Melbourne Museum
Nicholson street, Carlton

A couple of months ago we traveled to the Isla Nublar to see the dinosaurs of Jurassic World!

Loud, ginormous creatures who had captured our imaginations back when we were kids were alive and roaring fiercely throughout our time in the exhibition.

We had prepared Daniel for the dinosaurs by telling him that they were animatronic creations and they were not real dinosaurs. We had heard from friends that even the most avid dino fans might will get a little scared so we had to assure Daniel that he’d be safe during our excursion to Jurassic World.

Jurassic World collage Melbourne
Stegosaurus Jurassic World Melbourne
Instead of tears, his eyes were filled with wonder and he was so amazed. As soon as we entered into the first enclosure that housed the tall dinosaurs, some kids we were with started balling their eyes out straight away. I think this got Daniel’s guard up but by the next section he was excited and enthralled.
Jurassic World MelbourneDinosaurs at Jurassic WorldVelociraptor Jurassic WorldIMG_6107

We had been wanting to go to Jurassic World ever since we found out it was coming to Melbourne. Daniel was so amazed and wanted to keep going back to see the T-Rex and Triceratops, so we got a good long look at everything. I actually expected the exhibition to have more of a storyline of some sort related to the movie which it is named after and I was also surprised that the only velociraptors to be seen were outside the exhibition. Nevertheless, the main attraction, the dinosaurs, impressed us all not only by their sheer scale but also by the subtle little details – the way they blinked and breathed quietly while they were waiting to make their appearance made it really look like they were alive!

Jurassic World will be in Melbourne until October 2 2016.

Have you visited the dinosaurs? What did you think?

For some more school holiday fun try a visit to this awesome park and cafe or this one! – the kids and kids at heart will love it 🙂

Things To Do – Ron Barassi Park, Docklands

Ron barassi Docklands playground

These pics say it all! D had an awesome time at the Ron Barassi park in Docklands. We met up with some friends for some quality play time and the kids made the most of all the sand and water play. Luckily I brought a spare pair of clothes for D!

digger at Docklands playgroundD had such good coordination – he was able to work these diggers in no time!
IMG_9217IMG_9219Our little babies had a fine time napping!
IMG_9224Quite a unique playground making use of the space underneath the Bolte bridge – it gives you a whole new perspective of the huge bridge 
IMG_9222A rare sight – no monster truck in his hands because D was too busy with the playground equipment!
IMG_9221Eating some crispy grapes, strawberries and crackers that we packed for snacks. We ended up having lunch at one of the cafes at Harbour Town in Docklands as it was really close by on the the way out! D was so excited he saw lots of big things! – the big bridge and the big Melbourne Star Observation wheel!
water fun playground Melbourne IMG_9207 IMG_9208 IMG_9209Big sandbags served as a place for us mamas to sit and chat while watching over our kids and D also had fun jumping and running along them
Docklands playground The Urban MaDaddy and D getting busy with all the sand play pulleys, chains and tubes! Literally hours of fun, so don’t forget to pack the sunscreen and hat!
IMG_9218You get a panoramic snapshot of Melbourne city and the lush green grass makes you just want to run straight across it!
IMG_9223IMG_9220Washing up after all the water and sand play
IMG_9224Bolte Bridge Melbourne Docklands playgroundA cool view and nice shady parking spaces.

We went in the morning and it was super sunny so if you want a bit of shade whilst playing it’d be best to visit in the afternoon when you get the shade from the bridge. There are toilets and baby change facilities available and bbq’s, picnic tables and a water fountain.

Yet another great Melbourne playground for you and your family to explore! And maybe do some shopping on the way home at the factory outlets in Harbour Town while the kids sleep in their prams – that’s what we did!

What have been some of your favourite playgrounds you’ve been visiting this summer?

And on hot, sunny days let’s do this!

Werribee water park The Urban Ma blogStyling Daniel sun smart Werribee water park the Urban Ma blog The Urban Ma blog Werribee water park

Water park fun…and it’s free!

Holidays. Sun. Clear blue skies. An adventurous toddler.

Off to the playground we went!

And not just any old playground. We drove to “new Werribee” to explore the water park nestled in the Riverwalk estate. Always looking for places to discover and things to do, D squealed with joy as he played with the water fountains.

Water park fun that won’t break the budget. This free playground has got to be one of Melbourne’s best new public spaces. With a full sized basketball court, mini skate park, bbq’s and playground there is something for everyone. And once you’re done with it all, the wide open fields of fresh, green grass is just calling out for you to lie down and daydream away!

Werribee water park The Urban Ma blog rules

You are invited to celebrate life!…The Urban Ma way 🙂 #celebratelifetumw

What: Explore Melbourne’s playgrounds – featuring a fantastic water park!
 Newmarket Road, Werribee (in the Riverwalk estate) Just off the M1 freeway Werribee exit
When: All year round. October to March 9am to 8pm. April to September 10am to 5pm. (Sometimes the water features are not in operation so to avoid disappoint, check before you head there! Places Victoria or Wyndham City Council)
Cost: Free!
Features: a net swing, monkey bars, climbing wall, water park fountains and features, a basketball court and skatepark, toilets, bbq facilities, shaded areas with picnic tables, slides.
Age: Fun for all ages with toddler friendly playground equipment
What to bring:
– sunscreen, a hat and sunnies – let’s stay sun safe!
– a change of clothes and a towel
– pack a picnic or bring some bbq essentials (we packed some yummy sandwiches filled with leftover Christmas ham, nectarines and chocolates from Christmas presents!)
– a bottle of water to keep hydrated
– thongs for when you get wet and comfy shoes if you want to run around the basketball courts
– a basketball/skateboard/kite to fly in the open, grassy space
Fun Facts! This park area occupies 1.4ha and cost $4.8 million to complete. Village Park is found in the new Riverwalk estate and opened in October 2014. Just make sure you check that the water features are working before you visit.

Water park Werribee Riverwalk basketball courtsDon’t forget to bring a ball, skateboard or your rollerblades!
Water park Werribee collage The Urban Ma jacqfruitThe perfect way to spend a sunny day
Water park Werribee Styling Daniel The YuansMy rock climbing little man

sun bathing The Urban Ma blogThe wooden decking areas surrounding the water park are perfect for sun bathing and watching over the kids
Playground Werribee water park The Urban Ma blog
bridge water The Urban Ma blog BBQ Melbourne playgroundBring some snags and burger patties for a satisfying meal
The Urban Ma blog Melbourne playgroundRide your bike here and you can park it just opposite the bridges and basketball areas
The Urban Ma blog Melbourne playgroundOpen space with seating areas…a place for fabulous future events I think!
The Urban Ma blog water park MelbourneThe water features can be operated by the little ones. Simply find the buttons scattered around the water play area on poles

Melbourne playground The Urban Ma blogThis structure had him occupied for ages! Bark was the feature and he loved it! Lots of tunnels and holes to push the bark through
The Urban Ma blog Daniel Places Victoria The Urban Ma blogFresh, green grass…perfect for throwing frisbees, flying kites or just lazing around with an antipasto platter!
Mother and son Playground funDigger playground fun
Werribee water park Melbourne playgrounds The Urban Ma blog jacqfruit Werribee water park Styling Daniel The Urban Ma blog sun smart The Urban Ma blog Werribee water park tunnel The Urban Ma blogToo much fun to be had with this little guy!

For more things to do and see in Melbourne, sign up for email notifications 🙂 Thank you so much for your support in 2014. I appreciate each and every one of your clicks, comments and likes!

Interested in other playgrounds visited by The Urban Ma? Check out our post on Dinosaur Mimi!

Dancing with the mamas


The Urban Ma weekend Oct 2014

 Last weekend was so much fun! Here’s what we got up to 🙂

Ain’t nothing like a Wonderland party!

My goddaughter and cute little brother had their joint 1st and 7th birthday held at Wonderland Fun Park in the Docklands. There was an abundance of food, lollies, cake and rides! It was such a perfect day for it too – sunshine and friends all around. Daniel got to ride on the 3 toddler-friendly rides but spent a lot of time watching the dodgem cars wishing he could go for a spin on them 🙁 Don’t worry buddy, you’ll get to go on them next year! More pics here!

Rewind Dance Crew at Passion’s End of Year Concert

With some time to rest in between, we dropped Daniel off at mum’s house for a sleepover while we made our way back into the city for the Passion Dance Studio End of Year Showcase at Hi Fi Bar and Ballroom. It was a proud night for studio owner Vincent Calingasan as he watched all his students take the stage with enthusiasm and confidence. It was also such an exciting for me as I got to share the stage again with fellow mumma Susie and soon-to-be mumma Chaz! So grateful to be part of such a loving dance family. If you want to learn some dance moves and be part of the next concert you can! Click here for more info.

Kids Day Out – Errington Reserve

After a nice sleep in until almost midday (that hasn’t happened in a while!), we took Daniel to Kids Day Out at Errington. We missed this amazing event last year so this year we made sure we didn’t miss all the free rides, face painting, activities and performances. We also dug into some good food truck dishes from Big Cook Little Cook. I’ll post more about the event this week so stay tuned!

If you have any favourite places to visit or things to do, let me know – I’m always on the look out for new experiences to share with the fam 🙂


merry go roundDaniel absolutely LOVED going on the rides at Wonderland! Loved seeing him so happy 🙂

Dinosaur sightings in Melbourne’s West?

Mimi McNish Yarraville The Urban Ma blogStyling Daniel and daddy The Urban Ma blog

It’s something that until D came along I had forgotten the simple joy of – playgrounds! Before I see his face light up, I can hear his cute little voice from the back car seat saying “Ooooooohh dinosaur!”, or “Ooooooohh slide!” in a sing song almost melodic tone. Wide-eyed and excited to explore a brand new place, D always hurriedly gets out of the car in anticipation of the fun about to be had and the hubby and I can’t help but join in his enthusiasm.

It really is the simple things hey? Either that or I just love the openness of parks right now because D is turning two and this little toddler of mine is a hot ball of energy – open spaces like parks and playgrounds means I don’t have to constantly chase after him or constantly feel anxious that he’s going to break something or take something (he loves touching and checking out everything in the stores we visit when out in shopping centres). I can just let him roam freely as he discovers the different textures or grass, sand, bark and the awesome play equipment.


Mimi the Muttaburrasaurus

 Mimi the Muttuburrasaurus
McNish Reserve, Yarraville

free parking – little shade – benches – tables – water fountain

Did you know the the Muttuaburrasaurus was a prehistoric dinosaur – a herbivore whose skeleton was found in Queensland in the 1960’s?

Mimi is a model of the dinosaur thought to be uniquely Australian.

Mimi is an interactive dinosaur with a slide for a tail and several eggshells scattered around.

The Yarraville Community Garden is also nearby.

The structure was funded by Medibank with the the support of the Maribyrnong council made by the local artists at BigFish.

McNish collage The Urban MaMimi slide McNish Yarraville Egg hiding with daddy