COVER STORY — RAIS­ING TORONTO

Eight Toronto fam­i­lies tack­ling the chal­lenges of rais­ing kids in the big city

Village Post - - Contents -

The par­ents: Grant van Gameren, chef/owner of Bar Is­abel & Sunny Stone, metal worker and chef on mat leave

Home: De­tached house in Trin­ity Bell­woods

Kids: Wylie van Stone, nine months

What has it been like so far hav­ing a baby in the city?

Sunny: We had a mid­wife for the birth. The mid­wife was amaz­ing, the fol­low-up care was un­be­liev­able. There were a lot of ba­bies this year at my GP. They just did a whole group to­gether for their check­ups, and then in­di­vid­u­ally at the end you see a doc­tor.

What’s the big­gest headache about city life?

Grant: Park­ing sucks around here. I drive ev­ery­where, mainly be­cause at any given mo­ment I need to rush some­where. We pay for two cars to park, but there’s gen­er­ally no park­ing on our street. I’ll just park on Dun­das and hope to God I wake up at 8 a.m. Some­times I’ll wake up and be so tired and pay for park­ing, but I got a ticket at 8:03 a.m. I’m con­stantly pay­ing for park­ing.

Do you eat out as much since hav­ing a kid?

Grant: Since we had the baby, we eat at home 99 per cent of the time. Sunny was a pro­fes­sional chef for most of her ca­reer, so she cooks amaz­ing din­ners.

Have you had many deal­ings with child care yet?

Sunny: We’ve had three dates in nine months. We take him to ev­ery event, ev­ery restau­rant open­ing. Day­care is so ex­pen­sive here in On­tario. Babysit­ters start at $15 an hour. As it is, child care would be more than my an­nual salary.

Are there many neigh­bour­hood pro­grams ac­ces­si­ble to par­ents?

Sunny: The Artscape has cool pro­grams; I’ve taken him to the drop-in. Grant: I want to get him in the restau­rants, wash­ing dishes.

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