Monday's Local Mum Monique Gilbert
Where and how long have you lived in Sydney's east:
I relocated from Dubai to Coogee 9 years ago and I spent 6 years living in Coogee which I absolutely loved. However, since starting a family we decided that we needed more living space and moved to Kingsford. Kingsford is a great spot because the area is very quiet and family friendly.
How many children:
We have one boy, Lachlan who is now 21 months. I am finding this age to be very enjoyable and fun. He is learning something new every day and trying to copy Dad’s every move.
Our favourite park is definitely Centennial Park. We tend to visit the park once a week because it is not far from our home. Our family tradition now involves riding to the park on a Sunday and riding a lap of the grounds, followed by a coffee whilst Lachlan has a run around on the playgrounds.
Clovelly Beach has always been my favourite since arriving to the eastern suburbs. I was in love with Clovelly Beach prior to having a kid and I still love going. The only difference, previous to kids our favourite spot was on the side pavement though now we are on the sand with all the other families.
Favourite kid friendly cafe:
Our go to kid friendly café is Coogee Pavilion. It’s a great spot to enjoy a coffee, wine or meal with family and friends. If your kids would rather play than have a sit - down meal, then this is the place to visit. With so many activities for the kids, it gives you time to relax and enjoy your company.
Favourite Coffee Spot:
Prior to having children our favourite coffee place was Tropicana on Coogee Bay Road. The cakes are delicious and the servings are so generous that you can definitely share between two. Now as a family we prefer the easier option, ordering a take away coffee and heading down to the grass or playground near Coogee Beach.
Favourite date night place
One of our favourite date night places is Vue Bar at Bondi Beach. The place offers a romantic and relaxing setting with amazing view of Bondi Beach. Another spot is Watson’s Bay Hotel because we have happy memories from our wedding day at Dunbar House in Watson’s Bay.
Favourite Local Day Out Activity:
This year I became a member at the Des Renford Leisure Centre in Maroubra for fitness classes. I did not realise that the centre is a great spot for kids, offering four outdoor pools including a pool for toddlers. During the warmer months we would visit on a Sunday or after work on a week day because Lachlan loves the water. We could spend a good 2-3 hours going from pool to pool and we always finish the swim with hot chips, picnic style on the grass area.
Favourite Local Shop:
The only shop I visit on a regular basis is San Sebastian on Coogee Bay Road. I like the brands and the style of clothes is mostly casual which definitely suits me. They also have funky little outfits for toddlers and great gift ideas - always worth a visit if you are in Coogee.
Favourite wet weather location:
Favourite wet weather location would have to be home. Juggling a business and family life, sometimes it’s nice to keep warm and entertain Lachlan at home with a game or movie. I find our home very relaxing which is why I like to have my home days.
Describe an ideal day in Sydney’s eastern suburbs just for you?
An ideal day would include a morning visit to a playground for Lachlan to burn some energy. Then stopping into our favourite bakery, Coogee Bakery to buy fresh bread and sweets for lunch and ending the afternoon visiting or having friends over.
Recently we were invited by friends to Cromwell Park in Malabar to celebrate a friend’s birthday. It was my first time to the park and I definitely intend to re-visit to explore the beach and cafes. A relaxing park with gorgeous views of the ocean and a large playground that offered everything for the kids.
Work or Stay at home parent?
Working, I started my own company MG Recruit Imaging two years ago. We specialise in radiology recruitment by exclusively recruiting for all careers within the medical imaging industry. We provide permanent and locum employment services for Radiologists, including diagnostic, interventional and teleradiology, Sonographers, Radiographers, Mammographers, Nuclear Medicine Technicians, IT and radiology administration. Our clients include corporate companies, private imaging providers and public hospitals throughout Australia.
I decided to start my own business because my passion is radiology and I could see that there was a need within the industry to provide a more personalised recruitment service for both clients and candidates. It is vital for an imaging provider to seek the right candidates because every position has an impact on how well the practice operates and job satisfaction is just as important. For more information, you can view our website at www.mgrecruitimaging.com.au
When it comes to advice, I would say do what you feel is right for your baby, yourself and your family as every child is different. Also, try and find time to do the things that make you happy.