I'm an ex-Torontonian who's going "back home", so I want to say "hi" to the GTA members and I since I've been away for a while I could use some advice too, from a "mothering"/A.P. perspective particularly.
My dd who just turned 6 left T.O. at age 18 months. I hadn't heard about the Mothering forums then and actually knew just a handle of new moms like me (not all A.P. friendly, but most were) from my workplace & my East end Toronto neighbourhood. So other than family and a couple of old friends I don't have any "contacts" left in T.O. My dh, dd & I have spent the last 5 years a little bit like traveling "gypsies", we moved to Cambridge, then K-W (lived in Kitchener...worked & shopped in Waterloo! :LOL ) and finally 1 yr ½ ago we moved here, to a little village near Stratford, pretty much near "nowhere" (but he worked in London). We loved the "country life", even though by local standards our property was small it allowed us to have a huge vegetable patch and grow most of our own foods and enjoy nature (down side, we live next to a big road! In the snowbelt! and feel quite isolated from friends & family) but my dh job evaporated and we're both finding it very hard to get work in this area. So back to T.O. we go, where we hope to get back on track financially and also back to school, something we can't do around here. To enter a new phase, so to speak.
That's my story.
We've been checking out rent around the GTA, mostly East End, North End and Downtown (the areas we know well). Does anyone know what a going rate is for a 2 bdrm with access to a yard in a decent place (not a run down one)? Dh will spend some time in T.O looking for work in person and checking out places, etc. But so far it looks like rents in this category run around $1200 or so, we were hoping for a little lower, more like $900. Anybody know if that's realistic? We hoped to avoid moving in with family (nobody has too much room to spare) but might not have a choice.
Also, we were not too much into AP and alternative lifestyles when we lived there a few years back (other than being vegetarians), but now this seems seem more important with a school age child around. Even if we are back in the city we'd like to have access and contribute to an "earth friendly"/spiritually liberal/family oriented community (kind of hard to describe!
We're past the LLL meetings and Early Years Centres phase now. I've been meaning to check out the Unitarian Church, but never having been very church going I'm not sure what to expect. We've been TVA (Toronto Veg Association) members in the past, but I need to think of something more specific and "family friendly" too.
Well, this has dragged on long enough! If you've read this far, thanks! Hope it didn't drive you