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About munchkinpie

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  • Birthday July 30
  1. munchkinpie

    Narre Warren, Berwick & Beaconsfield & the Monash Freeway!

    Hi Plastic Packaging Pom There are 4 State Secondary Schools in Berwick. Berwick Secondary, Kambrya Secondary College, Timbarra P-9 and Nossal High School. Berwick Secondary College does have a very strict intake zone, especially for the new intake into Yr 7. My 2 daughters joined when we arrived in Berwick and went into Yr 10 and Yr 8. We don't live in the catchment zone and applied to the school before we had a property because we were really struggling to find a rental in the right area but because we were coming from out of the area and not at a natural joining point we were able to make the application and luckily for us they were very happy with the girls folders with previous school reports and references etc. I do know however that there have been instances of people living just on the South side of Princes Highway who havent been able to get in for Yr 7. Kambrya Secondary is located on Bermsyde Drive, not far from Clyde Rd and is the nearest school for houses near O'Shea Rd and in the Chase & Eden Rise Estates. It had some rough press for a fair few years but I know a few people who have children attend and they are happy with the school. One of the biggest problems I think it recently had to overcome was staff turnaround as lots of staff were being poached. That combined with it being a relatively young school, probably put off a lot of people who expectedly want the best option possible for their children. Timbarra P-9 School is located down Parkhill Drive, just off the Princes Highway at the Narre Waren end of Berwick. This is one of the few new schools across Melbourne which is operating as an extended education establishment, pupils can stay at the one school from Prep up till Yr 9. They can then move to one of the other secondary schools for Yr 10 onwards. I believe the system is still only a few years old at this school but I know lots of families who have children in the younger years at the school who love it. Nossal High School is a Select Entry school located just off Clyde Rd in the Monash Uni Campus. Again its only 3-4 years old and to be honest I know no one locally who attends the school and I believe most of them bus in from all over the city. My daughter travels to her cheer training 2 days a week after school and it is over 45km away and she has pupils from Nossal that get on her train and subsequent buses and are still on when she gets off. You also have a host of Private and Religious Secondary options - Beaconhills, Haileybury, St Francis Xavier, St Margarets and Berwick Grammar and more. I cant help with much more on these. Also there are then a range of schools that cover the Narre Warrn area also. In terms of Primary schools, my youngest is starting in Jan/Feb. We live on the Chase Est and we considered Berwick Chase Primary, Berwick Fields Primary, Berwick Primary and Beaconsfield Primary. For us we found that the 1st 3 were just too big and the current intake was just daunting. We were very impressed with Berwick Primary and all the facilities and what it had to offer but the average intake for Prep is 8-10 classes of 19-20 pupils and I just personally didnt want my son to be one of 200 new faces. Just remember that schools do change and have peaks and troughs like everything else in life. Also each child is different and what suits one will be very wrong for another. Hopefully when you arrive you will be able to get a feel for the schools for yourself and see which works best for your children.
  2. munchkinpie

    Narre Warren, Berwick & Beaconsfield & the Monash Freeway!

    Hi Woodstock We are in Berwick, my hubby commutes to the City via train (and cycle) and having come from doing the commute from Essex to London, he actually enjoys it! He normally is door to door in about 75-80mins. He cycles from home to Beaconsfield Station (for us its closer and quieter), jumps on train to South Yarra and then cycles again from there to his work in near Clarendon St. In our 9 months here, I have only had to "rescue" him once due to problems on the line. He leaves home at 7.30am and is home about 7.30am so his commute times are a bit different. Now for the Monash, and it is very very busy and does have regular problems. Hopefully someone can comment on that early commute but I think you may just get through quite easily before the madness descends. Coming back at 3.30 you can expect to hit the traffic starting to mount up and most days you can pretty much crawl along from Stud Rd to Berwick, that stretch should be a 9min journey when traffic is clear. When I drive from Berwick to Clarendon St it usually takes me 40-50 mins but that is out of peak hours. In terms of settling and the life here, then I really enjoy it and all going well will be here for the rest of our time in Australia. Only change we would ideally make would be moving maybe into Beaconsfield itself, just for practicality for ourselves with schools etc. We have 3 children, 2 at Berwick Secondary which I am very happy with and then our youngest is at Kinder. We were originally attract to the "feel" of Berwick, with the High St, mix of old and new, good schools, decent enough commute in our eyes, plenty of community activities and facilities. Additionally, bang in the middle of the beach and the mountains. We spend many weekends enjoying a day at the beach followed by a day up Mt Dandenong as each is only 30 mins or less away. Jump in the car a bit longer but still under an hour and we can be at the ocean or further down the bay at Mornington. We have the huge Westfield Shopping Mall at Fountaingate, Narre Warren which is 10 mins away as well as Pakenham and Cranbourne being within easy reach for shopping also. Negative points for us of the area is that it really is expanding at an astonishing rate, with lots of new houses going up. Schools, medical facilities and recreation do seem to be appearing along with these though so thats a good thing but the actual infrastructure will need looking at soon enough to cope with it as that will be the biggest problem. Feel free to fire any more questions at me. L x
  3. There is another meet up planned for this Sunday (28th April) from 12pm onwards at Wilsons Botanical Gardens in Berwick. Full details on Life in Victoria page. http://www.lifeinvictoria.com/forum/socialising-whats/1873-sunday-28th-april-wilsons-botanical-gardens-berwick-another-meet-up-d-2.html Come along and have a natter.
  4. Copying this info over from Victoria section in case anyone hasnt seen it. There is a meet-up planned for next weekend - Sat 23rd Feb Coot Picnic Area at Albert Park - everything there ie Parking, Play Area, BBQs. Hopefully see you all there on the 23rd of Feb from 12 noon onwards. Look out for the Union Jack bunting x
  5. Hi guys Yes there is still the meet up planned. Hoping to have a good turn out too, so make sure you pop along and say hi Louise x ps. One of the other forum members from Life in Victoria is bringing some bunting so lookout for that x
  6. munchkinpie

    Melbourne Suburbs - HELP!!!

    We met a family who moved to Endeavour Hills - I think they liked the area but if I remember correct the main thing that wasnt working for them was distance to Train line service. They actually sent their children to school/kinder in Berwick but think the reasoning was for work purposes. I believe they have since relocated to Lyndhurst (out past Cranbourne towards the coast ) There are some lovely parts of Narre Warren from what Ive seen. I dont know the area too well and havent looked at schools. I never looked at Cheltenham or Keysborough.
  7. munchkinpie

    Melbourne Suburbs - HELP!!!

    Hey Asuffield76 (and PityTheFool) We first moved to Glen Waverley as we had wanted to be as close to the city as we could afford, where there were decent schools and a nice area etc. However for a dew different reasons the area just wasnt for us and after 3 months we moved to Berwick. Ive said many times on here how I feel about Berwick and how much I am enjoying it. To answer your query regarding distance from the city, here is how it worked for us: My husband works in South Melbourne, near Albert Park. In Glen Waverley he would either run or bus from home to the train station, train to Flinders St or Southern Cross, then run or tram to work just off Clarendon Street. The journey each way was 75-80minutes each way. If we drove from home to his workplace straight down the M1 Freeway (not at peak times however) it was less than 25 minutes. Now we are in Berwick he cycles to Beaconsfield Station, train to Richmond or South Yarra and then cycles to work. This journey takes 85-90 minutes each way. Again we haven't done the peak rush hour drive but from our house to his workplace its a 50 min journey straight down the M1. So overall despite moving that bit further out of the city we have only added a negligible amount of time to his commute and the the other benefits we feel of the area far out weigh it. Before we got here we were dead set that commute time would not be something we would shift on and that we wanted to be less than an hour door to door. Funnily it just didnt work that way and its important to factor in not just the train/tram journey times but the whole journey as you find yourself surprised.
  8. So guys Ive looked at a variety of other parks/areas (Fawkner Park, Docklands Park, Yarra Park) I think that Coot Picnic Area at Albert Park is going to best in terms of having everything there ie Parking, Play Area, BBQs. Hopefully see you all there on the 23rd of Feb from 12 noon onwards I will update as to what to look out for as I think the Santa Flag may be a bit out of season :-D Louise xxx PS - Mods how can I amend the Thread title to include date and time details as opposed to making a new thread? thank you x
  9. So guys between here and the other forum and messages - 23rd Feb is looking the most popular. I think most central locations have been Albert Park and Royal Botanical Gardens. Im not overly familiar with Royal Botanical Gardens and having looked at website I cant find any overly ideal locations. Anyone have any map points/areas that might work? ie near childrens activity, parking, etc? There are 2 places at Albert Park that would work well (and are different from the last location we used there) http://parkweb.vic.gov.au/explore/pa...ound-areas-x-2 or http://parkweb.vic.gov.au/explore/parks/albert-park/things-to-do/coot-picnic-area
  10. Another 2 years when she is driving solo and Ill send her down to you lol
  11. They are fab babysitters - just not within their own house or with each other lol! 2 hours with teenagers is a wise time frame - after that they just whinge and cost money! Can you tell I'm having a good week? ;-p
  12. If you ever fancy a swap then just yell lol
  13. Ha ha funnily enough it was part of the Great Ocean Road plan but a friend has just been there for a few days and reported back lots of positive things so might make it a wee weekend jaunt sooner than later. As for keeping anyone happy, Ive got enough to deal with what with it being school holidays and having 2 teenage girls and a 4 year old monster! ;-p
  14. Thank you Harpodom and dmjg I had been thinking something more along the lines of in Central Melbourne. I haven't been to Geelong yet but it is on my Must-Do-Soon list. I have popped down to the Mornington Peninsula a few times now and it has many lovely spots. Both would Im sure be perfect for Meet-Ups and Im sure there have been some not that long ago in both locations. Just thought it would be nice to try find somewhere that most people can get to within an hour or so if they wished to come along. Hopefully wherever is decided you will both pop along and say "Hi"
  15. [h=5]So I'm thinking it would be good to arrange another meet-up whilst its still Summer time. Perhaps sometime in February? It would also be good to make it a central location to give all of the members an opportunity to meet one another. Any suggestions/interest?[/h]