My husband and I and our 14 month old are moving to Toronto in a few weeks. We still need to find some where to live so I would appreciate any suggestions on family friendly neighborhoods. My husband will be working close to Union Station and at this point we are looking for something that is within a 30 min ish commute. We are hoping to spend no more than $2500 a month on rent and need 3 bedrooms. We have a small dog and would like to be near parks, good walking areas.
I am also newly pregnant with twins and am wondering how maternity care works in Canada. I am originally from NZ which has midwife led care as the standar but coming from the US we had all Obstetrician care. The twin pregnancy and my "advanced maternal age" (38) makes me high risk in the US, so if you have any recommendations as to who to see I would be most appreciative.
I will also be looking for moms groups/play groups/storytimes for my little boy so any suggestions would be most appreciated!
Thanks for your help!
I would suggest looking for a place in "The Beaches" I lived there and really enjoyed it. Leslieville is also nice and affordable. I believe you are still eligible for midwife care. I would contact the Toronto offices asap and try to get in as they do fill up quickly.
High Park is also a nice area it is right near the park with loads of trails and they connect to the lakeshore and 20-30 minutes driving from downtown, much faster on the subway. It also has quite a few family friendly shops and a farmers market in the park. There are 2 libraries within walking distance that both do story time and an early years centre nearby. Just google Toronto library and go to hours and locations and find the one closest to where you are looking and it will give you details and google early years centre. I did not look into moms groups but I am sure there are a lot as it is a family oriented neighbourhood.
I used Seventh generation midwives just 10 minutes from there and highly recommed them if they are not full. All care is free with on OHIP card (you can ask about pricing if you don't have or won't have an OHIP card) but you may be deemed high risk because of the twins, you would have to talk to them.
I know that the Riverdale midwives collective and the North York - Don River Valley midwives have taken twin births.
I think that as long as you are near the subway, then the 30 minute commute is possible. Many families I work with enjoy the Beaches, especially near the lake and the boardwalk.
Nicole: mama to DD and DS, childbirth educator and doula. Dancing the spiral dance of life
Riverdale midwives would probably be a good fit for low intervention twin birth. I know they have done the odd twin homebirth too. Although any midwife should respect your choices - they operate on a very strong principle of informed choice.
We live in High Park/Junction and we LOVE it. HP is closer to the subway, but Junction (from Runnymede to Keele, and then from Annette north to the tracks) is my preference. It's very family friendly and there are lots of SAHP/artsy type parents who work from home etc. I often see dads at the parks on weekdays with their little ones, so that's always a good sign. Wonderful shops, restaurants, a great Ontario Early Years Centre with free activities every day for the 0-6 set. three different LLL groups w/in walking distance. Great schools, even two public alternative schools if that's your thing. There are two very active moms groups in the area on meetup.com - Junction Parents (they have a website too if you're not on meetup) and West Toronto Families.
$2500 is a very do-able budget for a 3 bed in the area. I have a friend who pays 2300 for a whole 4 bed house with yard on Runnymede. We are paying 1600 for our three bed apt - top 2 floors of a house, 1100 sq ft.
If you lived near Dundas in the Junction you could get to union station on transit at rush hour in under 40 min. If you lived close to a subway stop in High Park/Bloor West Village you might cut that down to 25-30 min. I work downtown and find the commute very manageable.
We LOVE our neighbourhood - feel free to PM me if you have more questions, or want to meetup once you guys move to Toronto - regardless of where you decide one, I love the whole city and enjoy showing it off :) I've also got more info/connections w midwives in the city if you need more support there... Good luck with the move!
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