Dec 8th

Yanchep Lagoon

By Buggybuddys Jennie

Review and information for Yanchep Lagoon 

Yanchep Lagoon is one of my favourite beaches to visit with the kids. Catch it on a good day – when the tide is out and there is an easterly wind - and you will be greeted with crystal clear, calm water.

 

The reef situated approx. 20 metres from the shore creates the lagoon making it a perfect swimming hole for young children.  The water is shallow with low waves making it an excellent place to snorkel and also introduce children to fishing.

However you do have to be careful when the tide comes in and the water cascades over the reef as it does create quite a strong rip current. 



The Yanchep Surf Life Saving Club patrol the beach during the summer season which runs from October to March. On a Sunday you will usually see the Surf Club in action with the children’s sports activities. Children can sign up to the Nippers Club from the age of 5. VacSwim also operates at Yanchep Lagoon during the summer school holidays.

There is a large car park across the road from the beach. We have been there on busy days – including Boxing Day and we have always been able to find a parking space.

  

Next to the car park is the Yanchep Lagoon Café. The cafe has recently been taken over by new owners and reopened on 1st December. There is also a small playground on the grassy area next to the café although it isn’t shaded and does get very hot!

Next to the café is a toilet block with showers and changing facilities. There is also a shower at the entrance of the beach.

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Dec 8th

IGA Christmas Carols 2016, Perth

By Buggybuddys

Review by Kelly Maloney

Who loves free stuff? WE DO!! Love is free. Oxygen is free. Life is free. Christmas joy is free. Do you know what else is free? For the first time in 72 years the IGA Carols by Candelight for Variety are back and they are FREE in 2016.

Held in Langley Park on Sunday 18th December, this family friendly event is an event of Christmas joy not to miss. The day will start at 1pm, with an afternoon of show rides, face painting, food stalls and pre carols on stage entertainment from 4:30pm

Grab a spot early...blankets at the front, low lying seats are sent to the back. Bring a picnic, bring some sunscreen and settle in for the afternoon and well into the night for an evening of Perth entertainment.

This annual event is a spine tingling chance to be part of a chorus of Perth singing and celebrating the festive season. When the sun sets over Perth city and the candlelight illuminates, the evening will be hosted by Channel Nine's Louise Momber and Michael Thompson.

Special guest this year include Anthony Callea, Chris and Courtney Murphy, Robbie Anderson (The Voice Kids) and the Variety Youth Choir. The main event carols will commence at 7:15pm.

But hang around! The night will conclude with a spectacular fireworks display over the swan river at 9:15. Don’t miss this magical family event! An amazing way to celebrate Christmas n our wonderful city!!

For more info head to

www.igacarols.com.au

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Dec 7th

Dejaxo Artisan Bakery & Cafe, Mount Hawthorn

By Buggybuddys

Review by Holly Clark

Nestled amongst the leafy streets and heritage-style houses in Mount Hawthorn is lovely Dejaxo Artisan Bakery & Cafe. It is open 7.00am to 5.00pm seven days a week.

On entering the front doors on the sunny morning we visited, both my daughter and I were greeted warmly by the staff behind the counter. While we perused the delicious looking baked goods on display, one of the ladies came out to say hello to my daughter, asking if it was ok for her to have a candy cane. My daughter was absolutely delighted!

After ordering, we headed to the rear of the cafe where there is a bright clean alfresco area. This is great for the little ones. The area is fenced and gated, keeping children away from the busy road outside, and has a grassed section to run and play on in the middle. There are two tables set out under cover of the verandah, as well as a selection of comfy cushions to sit on near the edge of the grassed section. Leading from the gate is a ramp for pram and wheelchair access which leads into the cafe.

In this outside area, we found two plastic baskets of books and toys to play with, most of which were suitable for babies through to preschoolers. Miss 2.5 had a ball drawing colourful lines and rainbows with chalk on the chalkboard wall at the back of the under cover area.

 

Pencils and colouring in sheets are available, too. Cleverly, Dejaxo has included their kids menu options on the bottom: egg on toast, chicken tenderloins, and ham and cheese brioche roll, each coating $6.50.

Since it was morning tea time, Miss 2.5 opted to have a funny face cookie, while I had a latte and a Lamington filled with jam and cream. The latte was very good, very smooth, while the Lamington was fluffy, light and fresh. I thought the prices here very reasonable with our order costing around $9.

Inside the cafe is cool and relaxing with soft lighting. Large windows line the outside wall, letting in more light softened by the shady trees. The smells of the kitchen and baked goods are amazing, a feast for the senses. There are a selection of tables, close to the front of the cafe, near the bakery and closer to the alfresco area.

We noted there is another outdoor dining section set aside outside the front doors on Anzac Road. This was not in use on the day we visited, but perhaps the owners plan to expand dining out here also.

Toilets are available in the rear the cafe in alfresco area. A baby change table is available in the disabled bathroom. Both were immaculate at the time of our visit.

Overall we enjoyed our visit to Dejaxo Artisan Bakery & Cafe. My daughter had fun playing, and I enjoyed my coffee and cake in a relaxed environment. We found it family friendly, and hope to visit again soon.

Dejaxo Artisan Bakery & Cafe is located on the corner of Coogee Street and Anzac Road, Mount Hawthorn.

www.facebook.com/dejaxo.mthawthorn

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Dec 7th

Carrawatha Park, Willagee

By Buggybuddys

Carrawatha Park is a fantastic nature playground catering for all ages and abilities. It features many non-traditional items that you won’t find in other parks around Perth.

 

The park features extensive nature play including water play

 

A large slide mound with a wide polished concrete slide.

 

A climbing bridge

Sand play

 

A tree deck with climbing frame featuring a scramble net and fireman's pole

Balancing beams and stepping-stones

Cubby building area

 

Wood carvings are scattered throughout the park for you to discover. We loved this little fairy door.

 

There is space specially created for teens which includes a skate path, outdoor ping pong table, basket ball hoop, birds nest swing and sheltered lounge area.

Bring along your scooter as there are plenty of pathways perfect for scooting around on.

 

There is a large grassy area that includes a set of AFL practice goals.

 

There several shaded picnic shelters plus a two plate BBQ.

A big plus is the accessible toilet.

 

If you want to combine your visit to the park with a work out there is a range of outdoor exercise equipment shaded by Macadamia trees.

The playground is shaded by huge mature trees. 

There is a small car park but this does get full very quickly but there is more parking available in the surrounding streets and on the large grassy space next to the park.

 

Carrawatha Park is located on Archilbald Street in Willagee.

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Dec 7th

Lights In The Heights, Padbury

By Georgia

 

 15th –23rd DECEMBER 2015  [7pm – 9pm]

Address: C3 Church – 31 Chadlington Drive, Padbury WA 6025

Lights in the Heights is a fantastic free and festive event that runs every night from 7–9pm in the leadup to Christmas. The C3 Church in Hepburn Heights, Padbury, hosts the event annually and everyone is welcome.

Essentially it is more like a Christmas Festival than a lights display, so don’t let the name mislead you! There is lots of fun to be had for families, from Christmas Craft to Santa photos, jumpy castles and free coffee for adults! Intrigued? Read on…

The entire event takes place indoors in the modern church building which has several rooms all decorated as different Christmas zones. Some of the activities are similar to last year, so we can tell you about them but there are also new and exciting additions for 2016 …

For the first time this year you need to register in advance for tickets. Tickets are fee and session times are 7pm - 8pm, 7.30pm - 8.30pm and 8pm - 9pm. Be quick - many of the 7pm sessions are already booked out! CLICK HERE to book your session time. 

Each child will receive a 'Follow the star' map on arrival. You need to follow the star to each of the 7 zones to receive a stamp. There is a circular route to follow that allows you to see everything on offer and eventually make your way to the exit. You can linger in any zone for as long as you like. Last year we spent an hour in total at the event before the kids needed bedtime, but it was a full and exciting hour!

This is what you can expect to see at the 2016 Lights in the Heights:

Christmas Lights Tunnel – enter the building through a tunnel of lights to get you into the Christmas mood

Winter Wonderland – take a wander through a forest of creatively decorated trees with unusual themes such as socks, hearts, Octonauts, Disney and more ...

  

5 Minute Family Movie with Synchronised Light Show  – last year this was a humorous and fun short film about the importance of love at Christmas time

 

One Starry Night  Walk-through Christmas storybooks

Santa's Workshop – a room filled with sit down Christmas activities set up for the kids to indulge in their creativity


Family Photo Booths – last year this included a fun prop area and a gingerbread house with cutout holes to stick your head into for photos


Get A Photo With Santa – Santa is riding his sleigh and invites you to join him while you take a photo or the friendly staff will help use your phone to take a pic on the spot if you want to be in it too


Nativity Scene

Funville – This awesome room had a great atmosphere with Christmas lazer lights and a selection of fun Bouncy Castles for Kids as well as other games. There were sofas for adults to rest up while the kids play.

 

Free Coffee for adults – yes you heard right! A great way to keep the adults happy, while the kids soak up the fun a true show of Christmas Spirit!

Carol Singing Stage


and … Free Candy Canes

Take note that no other food or drinks is on sale or offer – so be sure to not come hungry, and bring along your water bottles.
Toilets are on site.

There is FREE PARKING and plenty of it! When you enter the car park there are several attendants to help direct you safely.

We found this event to be well staffed and organised. It was a real pleasure to visit, and we can’t wait to visit this year again!

Note: While there is naturally a religious side to the festivities, there is no pressure on the part of the church to join or even talk about your religious affiliations – we only encountered warmth and friendliness in the true spirit of Christmas. A discreet table in a corner contained leaflets about the church, so if you did want to know more about the church you could you chat to someone, but that was not the main reason for the event.

For 2016 Lights in the Heights is affiliated with Lifeline WA. Should you wish to make a gold donation during your visit all proceeds will be going to their Lights for Lifeline campaign.

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Dec 5th

Portable North Pole Review

By Buggybuddys

Review by Nicola Alexander

The Portable North Pole app is an excellent tool to have for the little ones leading up to their favourite day of the year.

The app offers free videos with everyone with a message from Santa and a birthday video to use on their birthday. But with the premium package there is so much more! There are videos from Santa. You can view Santa leaving on Christmas Eve. Go to the Elves workshop.

Video Pass ($9.99) offers all the premium videos or select Magic Pass ($12.99) and not only do you get access to all the videos but also Santa calls as well.

And best of all you can actually film the reaction of your children receiving these videos with the Reaction Recorder. 

I have used the free version for a few years, but with 3 children the older 2 are questioning why they all get the same video. With the premium version there is so much more to offer so you can mix it all up so every child really does have their own story.

This year I noticed there is an adult section too.  Nothing naughty but it was fun to use and show the kids Santa includes the parents too.

The app was very easy to dowload and use. Simply visit the PNP website or download the mobile app on iOS and Android. Create a video by entering details such as name, age and the gift your child is hoping for, and upload favorite pictures.

 You can share the video with family and friends or even download it to your device to use as you please.

To help spread a little extra cheer to those who may need it the most, PNP donates five percent of all online sales proceeds to more than 40 children’s hospitals around the world. More than $300,000 has been donated on behalf of PNP’s fans since 2012.

With millions of fans around the world, the No. 1 mobile Santa app Portable North Pole is available in six languages - English, French, Spanish and, new this year, Japanese, German and Italian. Portable North Pole is now in its ninth year as a favorite tradition for families during the holiday season; enjoyed in over 180 countries across the globe and has had over 125 million video views worldwide. 

Get 20% off Portable North Pole Video or Magic pass with our special discount code PNP6KDSBAUPFXG20. Click here to redeem the code

For more information visit www.portablenorthpole.com

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Dec 5th

Broadview Park, Landsdale

By Buggybuddys

Review by Kylie Van der Watt

Broadview park is set around a small lake, with a path running all the way around it. It's a lovely spot and perfect for a stroll or ride around the lake and a play.

Over the water is a gorgeous little gazebo with seats inside. This is the perfect spot to look for ducks and koi. The gazebo is safely fenced, with no risk of children slipping into the water.

There's no barrier around the lake or play equipment though there is a decent distance between them.

There is a small playground set on sand for younger children, featuring stairs and a slide in the shape of a dinosaur, with windows to look out of and a cubby underneath. Set around this is a sand table, table and chairs, a seesaw and two swings, one of which is a toddler swing.

Located a short distance away is a large climbing web for the older children. This will certainly get them strengthening muscles and problem solving as they work out how to climb and move around.

There are trees throughout the park however no shade over any of the play equipment. We were there in the early afternoon on a warm day and the slide was too hot to use. Also look out for bull ants as we saw them throughout the park and all through the sand at the play equipment.

There are some picnic shelters, and other benches around the lake and a barbecue. We didn't see any toilets at the park though Landsdale Forum shopping centre is next to the park which would have public toilets.

Broadview Park can be found on The Broadview, Landsdale.

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Dec 5th

Des Penman Reserve Playground, Nollamara

By Buggybuddys

Review by Holly Clark

Des Penman Reserve is a large grassy reserve located in Nollamara. It is one of the largest of its kind in the area. Set aside in one corner, there is a neat playground, which is staggered over a number of levels for the kids to explore.

The main climbing frame has two plastic slides, a straight one and a twisty corkscrew slide. There are various climbing ladders, an abacus with blue plastic balls, a steering wheel for imaginative play, and a flying fox.

There is a cute spring rocker that looks like a lizard or maybe dinosaur. This was a favourite with Miss 2.5.

Miss 2.5 loved the spinning ring too, insisting I had to play on it with her. Look out as it moves fast!

This playground has two sets of swings, a set at each end of the playground, each with a toddler and a regular swing.

With two covered picnic tables and a barbecue, and lots of grassy area to run and spread out a picnic rug, this playground area would be a good spot for barbecues or birthday parties.

We loved that most of the play equipment is covered by shade sails, preventing it from getting too hot for little hands or bottoms. There are tall shady trees surrounding the area which help to keep it shaded throughout the day.

The playground is not fenced, so little wanderers will have to be watched to prevent them getting on the nearby road.

Free parking is available in the large carpark on Carcoola Street, with a smaller one also on Lemana Road. Public toilets are available on the other side of the reserve Kindra Way. For cold drinks or snacks, it is just a short walk to the IGA and shops on Nollamara Avenue.

Des Penman Reserve playground is located on the corner of Carcoola Street and Lemana Road, Nollamara.

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Dec 5th

Sondrea Espresso, Osborne Park

By Buggybuddys

Review by Holly Clark

Sondrea Espresso is a bright modern cafe in the heart of Osborne Park, just around the corner from the Osborne Park Library. The modern wood and metal decor is as vibrant and clean as an IKEA catalogue. Upbeat music plays over the stereo, and a refreshing breeze sweeps in from the open doors at the front.

While not strictly a cafe for kids, Sondrea Espresso is a great stop for a quick coffee and bite to eat on the go. There is no kids corner to keep younger kids busy or a kids menu as such, but there are some great food kid-friendly options available such as muffins, yoghurt, wraps and rolls.

There don't appear to be hot meals served as such, but there are many options for breakfast, lunch and snacks available in the glass cabinet next to the register. Choose from delicious fresh options such as bagels, wraps, yoghurts with fruit compote, colourful salads, and toasted croissants. For an example of pricing, the cupcakes and muffins cost $4-$5, the raw balls $4, and the wraps around $7-$10.

When we visited we enjoyed a latte, a ham and cheese croissant, and a mango coconut cupcake. The coffee here is amazing! It's a rich and full flavoured blend, smooth and not at all bitter. It is joy in a cup!

The cupcake was moist and light, and not overly sweet. Miss 2.5 said she thought it was beautiful.

There are a about half a dozen tables inside at the moment, with benches in the front window for takeaway orders to wait comfortably. With lots of room to spare, I'm sure they will add more sit down dining.

There are a couple of high chairs available for littler diners, and a cozy corner with armchairs in the back near the rear entrance.

We found the service here excellent. The staff greeted us with a smile, asked my daughter how her day was, and chatted to just about everyone who visited.

Sondrea Espresso is close to public transport, with buses stopping on on Main Street and Royal Street. Parking is available at the front and the rear of the centre. Next door to the cafe, there is an Australia Post outlet, as well as a butcher and IGA within the centre. So it's convenient if you need to run errands and get your coffee fix.

Sondrea Espresso is located at 6/212 Main Street, Osborne Park.

www.facebook.com/sondrea.espresso

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Dec 5th

Catalina Park, Clarkson

By Buggybuddys

Review by Kylie Van der Watt
Catalina Park - Elsbury Approach, Clarkson

This park features a playground to one side, with winding pathways through garden beds packed with native plants. On the other side of the bushy garden is the grassed area which has a soccer goal at one end and plenty of room to run and kick a ball about.

The playground is set right next to the path and road although there are some limestone walls alongside the play areas. It's a unique design with varying levels for children to climb and explore.

At the top is a large nature play based area, with logs set in sand. Perfect for climbing and balancing.

From here there is soft fall hill with a steep slide down to the next level where there is a rocking horse, balance swing and a spinning balance pole.

 

On the other side is the path and set in sand again, are two separate sections, one with swings and the other with two big soft fall hills which has a rope climbing web twisting between them. Given the variety of play equipment, there would be something to suit most ages.

There are a few picnic shelters, one located near the playground, the other overlooking the grassed area and other tables and benches scattered about. Given the pathways winding through the bushy gardens along with the very separate levels of the playground, supervision could be challenging with very young, or multiple children. You can't see both levels of the playground from most parts of the playground, and the lower level has easy access to the road.

There are parking places around the park and near the playground. There are no toilets or drink fountains located at the park.

Catalina Park is located at Elsbury Approach, Clarkson

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