The parents: Nikki Andal, photographer and blogger who works in IT, & Lenard Andal, software developer Home: Detached home in Richmond Hill Kids: Mason, four, & Carter, two
Did you always plan on raising your kids in Richmond Hill?
Nikki: We didn’t want to be downtown Toronto. Raising two kids, we wanted to be outside with parks and have just a little bit of a slower life. It’s like cottage life, but we’re five minutes from the 404 to go downtown.
Do you find there are any challenges that come with living north of the city?
If you’re trying to go to a concert or a Blue Jays game, you might have that extra half hour drive. And sometimes we miss that downtown food. We’re OK with those two.
Where do your weekends take you as a family?
We love the outdoors and we have a lot of adventures. Every weekend now, we’re out on the boat in the lake in the summers, or we’re hiking through the trails. I find we’re a little more physical now. The kids are inside less and spend less time on their electronics. They’re more apt to be outside with the kids in the area playing.
Do you find that there’s a great sense of community in your neighbourhood?
When we moved in, all the neighbours came out and started telling us where to go and where to eat. There are so many kids around us. It’s just an amazing environment that we love raising our kids in. There are days when we don’t even lock our door. It’s just a different mindset. We can just go walking at night and not worry about the kids playing. We always have our eyes on them, but it’s a different kind of safety. It’s a great feeling.