Disney on Ice presents Frozen – Giveaway!

If you’re tossing up whether to take your kids to see Disney on Ice this winter, or if it’s already an annual tradition your family, here’s my tip for you – this is the year that you must get tickets. Because this year’s Disney on Ice presents Frozen.

Disney On Ice presents Frozen brings the most popular Disney movie ever to life on ice with  world-class skaters and dazzling special effects. Hosted by Mickey and Minnie, this live spectacular which will feature the full story of Frozen, as told in the Academy award winning film.

Elsa and Anna, Olaf and Kristoff. See them all in stunning costumes while gliding gracefully on the ice rink transformed into the glistening Arendelle.

Disney On Ice presents Frozen tours Australia nationally this June and July and will show at Melbourne Hisense Arena Wednesday 5 July to Sunday 9 July 2017. Tickets start at $34.50*

Tickets via Ticketek on 132 849 or at online www.ticketek.com.au/disneyonice.

(*When tickets are purchased with cash at the box office. Ticket price includes GST & Booking/Inside Fee. Additional Transaction & Credit Card Fees may apply.)


I have 4 x A Reserve tickets to Disney On Ice presents Frozen in Melbourne on Wednesday 5 July 7pm.

To win just follow the instructions below. The competition closes midnight Monday 29 May and the winner will be randomly drawn and contacted by email. The winner must respond within 48 hours or a new winner will be drawn. The winner’s tickets will be available for pickup at the box office for the relevant performance. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

HOT: Frank’s, 97 Cavanagh Street, Cheltenham

If you’re around Westfield Southland but don’t fancy eating in the food court, seek out Frank’s. It’s a fantastic cafe hidden away in the residential streets of Cheltenham, under the shadow of the behemoth shopping centre.

Frank’s is known as ‘Cheltenham’s local’ and it is a highlight amongst an otherwise unremarkable strip of suburban shops. It’s buzzing with activity on a weekday lunchtime.

The space is split over two shopfronts and the dining area encloses the central coffee making area, cake cabinet and kitchen.

One side has slightly more room for prams and there are numerous high chairs available. The toilets are large and able to fit a pram, but don’t contain change facilities.

The food coming out of the open kitchen is a fusion of Asian and Western influences by Eli Faye (ex-head pastry chef at Tommy Collins events and ex-head chef at Golden Child in Glen Iris). On a weekend that tiny kitchen can pump out 400 covers!

Frank's Cheltenham

From the lunch menu (available from 10:30am for early birds like me!) I choose the beef rib bao ($19). Three soft pillows envelope chunks of tender beef, piquant daikon kimchi, chilli kewpie mayo and a rough hairdo of shredded cabbage. It’s food that’s unexpectedly sophisticated for the quiet suburban location.

Frank's Cheltenham

For dessert I have the mini cinnamon doughnuts with soft toasted meringue, vanilla ice cream, poached rhubarb and white chocolate ($16.50). If you have a sweet tooth this is a must do, particularly for the fluffy-crunchy combo of the doughnuts and meringue.

Frank's Cheltenham

All the cakes and pastries are made on site and are very reasonably priced. This delectable chocolate brownie is $6.50.

Frank's Cheltenham

The kids menu is printed on a colouring-in sheet (coloured pencils provided) and contains fairly standard items, including a substantial ham, cheese and tomato toastie that costs only $5.

Frank's Cheltenham

Frank’s is a fantastic option for Cheltenham (and surrounding bayside) families. Within walking distance is a tiny playground at Friendship Square or venture inside Westfield Southland for the only Vjunior cinema in Melbourne – a cinema designed by and for children.

HOT Tips:

  • Pram access;      
  • High chairs;
  • Standard menu suitable for kids;
  • Children’s menu;
  • Free street parking; and
  • Walking distance to Friendship Square park and playground; and
  • Close to Westfield Southland (and VJunior cinema).

Frank’s 97 Cavanagh Street, Cheltenham

Mon-Sat 7am-4pm

Sunday 8am-3pm

Frank's Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

What’s On – Friday 12 May to Thursday 18 May 2017

Happy Mother’s Day for this Sunday 14 May! There’s lots happening around town for the Mother’s Day weekend plus here’s a list of the best high teas in Melbourne for you to treat your mum (or yourself!).

Also I’ll be at Highpoint on Monday 15 May 10-1pm as part of their weekly Master Mind series of free activities for kids. Visit the Book Swap Bike, bring books to swap, read a book and make some bookish craft with us!


  • Mothers Day Makers Market (Fri 12 May) – Enjoy a glass of bubbles from the Collins Place pop-up bar (noon-6pm) in the whimsical fantasy garden, sway to some sweet tunes from The Julian Banks trio (noon-2pm) whilst meeting some of Melbourne’s best designers, creators and food makers.
  • Kids Flicks ACMI (Sat 13 May – Sun 14 May) – smart films for smart kids. 
  • Animal Extravaganza Harbour Town (Sat 13 May – Sun 14 May) – free family activities every weekend until 12 June.
  • Queen Street Plaza (Sat 13 May – Sun 14 May) – A place to sit, eat, have a drink and enjoy free family entertainment right in the heart of the city.
  • Sunday Family Funday Munich Brauhaus (Sun 14 May) – mobile farm experience, face painter, kids’ entertainer and yummy food at Munich Brauhaus.
  • Law Week Festival Hub (Mon 15 May – Sun 21 May) – Kids can learn about the history of fingerprinting to solve crime and make their very own fingerprint badges.
  • Shop the City (Wed 17 May) – Chase the huge sales, events and experiences at Melbourne Central, Emporium Melbourne, QV Melbourne, The Strand Melbourne and Melbourne’s GPO.
  • Aladdin the Musical (Fri 12 May – Sun 22 Oct) – Disney film turned into lavish musical. Read the review.
  • Play Pod State Library of Victoria (Fri 12 May – Wed 31 May) – Play Pod is the SLV’s program for children aged under 8 years with activities to read, create and play. There’s a new theme every season for Autumn 2017 it’s inspired by Where is the Green SheepREAD THE REVIEW
  • Fiona Hall: Uneasy Seasons NGV (Fri 12 May – Sun 6 Jun) – new interactive and immersive exhibition for children at NGV International. Full review.



Collingwood Children's Farm, 18 St Heliers St, Abbotsford



  • Pre-school Recycled Art Experience Richmond (Fri 11 May) – free art experience with Carolyn Cardinet, an artist whose passion is making art from recycling and litter.
  • Heide Makers Market (Sat 13 May) – eclectic mix of art, design and handcrafted goods.
  • Melbourne Tram Museum (Sat 13 May) – Visit a Melbourne icon at this quirky museum. FULL REVIEW.
  • Belgrave Big Dreams Market (Sun 14 May) – discover original and bespoke design pieces, some of the yummiest and freshest produce the area has to offer, live music, bouncy castle and facepainting  for the kids.
  • Yarra Valley Railway (Sun 14 May) – take a trip on the historic Walker RM22 Railmotor from Healesville to Tunnel Hill. Full review.
  • Rocky Road Festival (Fri 12 May – Wed 31 May) – 31 different flavours, a host of Rocky Road infused temptations plus a world record beating block that every visitor can try for free!


HOT: Eltham Lower Park Accessible Play Space, Diamond Valley Rail Park, Main Rd, Eltham

Eltham Lower Park playspace

Eltham Lower Park playspace is a fully fenced and accessible adventure playground opposite the Diamond Valley Railway. The playground + train combo makes it a great destination for a half-day adventure.

Eltham Lower Park playspace

The playground is themed around the Eltham Copper Butterfly, an endangered butterfly that’s unique to the area. You’ll find panels describing aspects of the butterfly, a climbing wall on the butterfly wings and wooden insect sculptures.

Eltham Lower Park playspace

The playground also features a continuous accessible pathway throughout the site, all-abilities harness seats on the swings and flying fox, an accessible carousel, elevated sand trays for wheelchair access to the sandpit, tactile panels with Braille and Auslan symbols.

Eltham Lower Park playspace

Other equipment includes a birds nest swing, tunnel slide, balance beam, stand-on spinner and a small water play area.  

Eltham Lower Park playspace

The playground is a popular destination for birthday parties as there are picnic shelters, BBQs, water taps, toilets just outside the fence, plus the Diamond Valley Railway.

While you’re in Eltham also visit Second Home and Montsalvat for a great day out.

HOT Tips:

  • Suitable for babies;
  • Suitable for older kids;
  • Diamond Valley Railway runs on Sundays;
  • Parking can be difficult when the train is running.
  • public toilets which are fully accessible;
  • Fully fenced;
  • Fully accessible;
  • Picnic shelters and covered barbecues;
  • Natural shade;
  • Water play; and
  • While you’re in Eltham also visit Second Home and Montsalvat.

Eltham Lower Park Accessible Play Space, Diamond Valley Rail Park, Main Rd, Eltham

The HOT List: Top 9 Tips for Visiting MONA with kids

mona hobart

The Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) Hobart is Australia’s largest privately-funded art museum and since 2011 it has become a huge drawcard for visitors to Tasmania.

MONA’s collection is a reflection of the owner David Walsh’s personal taste. There’s a mixture of antiquities, photography, paintings, video and immersive installations from Australia and around the world.

A lot of the content is adult-themed – David Walsh obviously has a fascination with sex and death. But MONA is still a place you can take kids  as many of the works are interactive and fun.

Here are my Top 9 tips for visiting MONA with kids.

Museum of Old and New Art MONA Hobart

  1. Manage your expectations according to your kid’s age

There are over 300+ artworks on display so you’re unlikely to stay long enough to see them all.

I first visited MONA when Lady AB was 1 year old. She got pushed around in a pram and vaguely looked at some of the more interactive works. We spent about 1.5 hours there.

My second visit to MONA was without kids and obviously it was a completely different experience. We got a guided tour as we were staying at the MONA Pavilions on Tuesday (when the gallery is closed) and had a drink in the subterranean Void Bar and wine tastings at the Cellar Door.

My last visit to MONA was when Lady AB was 6 years old and Baby 2.0 was 4 years old. Baby 2.0’s attention span lasted for about an hour whereas Lady AB and I were at the gallery for almost 3 hours, discussing artworks and exploring concepts of art philosophy plus lunch.

MONA is not a cheap day out – the cost of 2 adult entry tickets ($28) plus 4 ferry tickets ($22) equals $144. So you’ll get more value for money the older your kids are.


  1. Ride a sheep to MONA

MONA is located within the Moorilla winery on the Berriedale peninsula in Hobart, Tasmania. It’s about 25 drive minutes from Hobart CBD and there are several ways to arrive.

The best way to arrive with kids is to take the MONA ROMA, the catamaran that departs from Brook Street Ferry, cruises down the Derwent River, and arrives at the bottom of the museum.

Museum of Old and New Art MONA Hobart

The approach is smooth so you’re unlikely to feel sick and it is very picturesque, especially as you go around the bend and spy MONA’s spectacular hilltop setting. The ferry ride takes 30 minutes.

Museum of Old and New Art MONA Hobart

In addition, there are toilets and a snack bar on board, plus on the upper deck you can ride a sheep sculpture instead of sitting on a seat!

It costs $22 per person (adult or child 4+ years), one way or return. The ferry runs according to Winter or Summer schedule and you must nominate a departure time at the time of purchasing your ferry ticket. You’re able to change your departure ticket at the ticket office at any time.

Note from the ferry terminal there are 99 steps to the entrance of MONA. If you have accessibility issues you will need to discuss your requirements at the time of booking. If you have a pram I suggest you just carry it up/down the steps.


  1. Other ways to get to MONA

If you don’t fancy the boat then you can take a coach transfer from the MONA Brooke St ferry terminal (Hobart).

It costs $22 per person (adult or child 4+ years), one way or return. The bus runs also according to a less frequent Winter or Summer schedule and you must nominate a departure time at the time of purchasing your ferry ticket. You’re able to change your departure ticket at the ticket office at any time.

If your kids are old enough then I highly recommend hiring a bike to cycle to MONA from the Brooke St ferry terminal (Hobart). The ride is mostly off-road, well-signed and flat. You’ll get to see some of Hobart’s outskirts, the water and enjoy the wind in your hair. The only hill is at MONA’s driveway. Rental is $22 per person.

From the airport the MONA Roma Express (Bus) boards outside the Virgin/Tiger Airline arrivals terminal at Hobart Airport. The trip takes 45 minutes each way and costs $22 per person (adult or child 4+ years), one way or return.You need to prebook 03 6223 6064.


  1. How to get around MONA with a pram

Museum of Old and New Art MONA Hobart

Once you get yourself up those 99 steps from the ferry pier then the collection takes up three floors within an underground gallery.

There are several lifts within the building and pending crowds, plenty of room to push a pram around each floor and the ramps. It’s a big space.

The rest of the outdoor site is mostly accessible with a pram, though there are parts that can be muddy or only provide dirt paths.

If you need to store your pram the cloak is free. There are also luggage lockers for hire $6.


  1. Borrow a free O device

Instead of museum plaques MONA provides each visitor with an ‘O’ device, an ipod loaded with information, thoughts and ramblings about each artwork. As you walk through the gallery it senses your location and provides information about the surrounding works.

It’s not really an audio-guide (though you can use headphones with it) and in fact I don’t recommend shutting yourself off with headphones.

If you have a child who can read try to give them their own device (sometimes staff don’t let under 18s have them). There are adult themes and expressions used in the guide so expect to be asked some curly questions.


  1. Give your kids a camera

Museum of Old and New Art MONA Hobart

I find in art galleries that kids can be much more engaged if they’re able to take photos.

I give my kids an old iphone and then after the visit we chat about some of the photos they’ve taken. In amongst the silly selfies kids can also capture interesting perspectives!


  1. Highlight works for kids

While there’s lots of sexually explicit and otherwise confronting content, there’s still lots of of other works to see. The map advises you of areas where parental discretion is advised.

Start from the bottom floor and work your way up.

My kids enjoy these works the most. Note that what’s on display often rotates:

Museum of Old and New Art MONA Hobart

Musical trampoline. When is a trampoline art? When it’s an expression of an artistic intention.

Museum of Old and New Art MONA Hobart

Museum of Old and New Art MONA Hobart

Kids will naturally gravitate towards this interactive work as soon as they step off the ferry. As you bounce the small bells dingle-dangle and while you’re waiting for your turn you can also gong the big bells.

Museum of Old and New Art MONA Hobart

bit.fall by Julius Popp (2001-2006). Words from internet news streams turn into a constant waterfall of words.

Museum of Old and New Art MONA Hobart

Cloaca Professional by Wim Delwoye (2010)  aka the poo machine.  The installation replicates the human digestive system and it is fed every day at 11am and poos around 4:30pm. Lady AB holds her nose in fascination as we wonder what it had for lunch that day. Note if you stay at the MONA Pavilions on a Tuesday (when the gallery isn’t open) then you get to have a money-can’t-buy experience – a guided tour of the museum plus the opportunity to feed Cloaca!

Museum of Old and New Art MONA Hobart

Dot Obsession – Yayoi Kusama’s polkadot works makes for a fun space to explore. Just don’t touch any of the sculptures!

Queen (A Portrait of Madonna) by Candice Breitz (2005) – Baby 2.0 was mesmerised by the videos of people singing Madonna’s Immaculate Conception album a cappella.

Museum of Old and New Art MONA Hobart

Hound in the Hunt – older children can try to replicate Vermeer’s works using an optical technique and lenses.

Fat Car by Erwin Wurm (2006) – fans of Lightning McQueen will think that the red racecar has eaten too many doughnuts! Lady AB and I had a good chat about the dangers of excess.

Museum of Old and New Art MONA Hobart

ZiZi the Affectionate Couch – this furry seat looks like a standard museum seat…except when you sit on it! It moans, groans and squelches. Give it a hug!


  1. Where to eat at MONA

Museum of Old and New Art MONA Hobart

You can BYO picnic to MONA (just not alcohol) or there are two on-site cafes – one is a standard cafe with outdoor seating facing the water and the other is the Wine Bar with more charcuterie and desserts.

Museum of Old and New Art MONA Hobart

The Source restaurant is a high-end restaurant and does not really cater for kids except perhaps for breakfast. If you do go enjoy the view!


  1. What else there is to do at MONA

Key times to visit MONA include the annual festivals MOFO (January) and Dark MOFO (June) which showcase large-scale public art and live performances. A highlight of this year’s Dark MOFO included the House of Mirrors which is now temporarily installed in Bendigo.

On weekends you can enjoy free jazz indoors or outdoors (depending on the weather)

On Sundays over summer/autumn there are the MONA Markets, a mix of farmers market and craft/design.



Have you visited MONA before? Share your experiences. 

Museum of Old and New Art (MONA), 655 Main Road, Berriedale, Tasmania +61(0)3 6277 9904

Open Wednesday – Monday

Closed Tuesdays (27 December excepted) and Christmas Day

Open every day in January


Winter opening hours

Museum and Museum Shop 10am – 5pm (last entry 4.30pm)

Library: 10am – 5pm

Museum Café: 10am – 4pm

Void Bar: 10am onwards

Summer opening hours:

Museum and Museum Shop: 10am – 6pm (last entry 5.30pm)

Library: 10am – 5pm

Museum Café: from 10am

Void Bar: from 10am


ADULT– If you’re not from Tasmania, admission is $28

CONCESSION– With concession card $25.

UNDER 18– Free*

TASMANIAN– If you are Tasmanian and present ID you get in for free.




HOT: Habitots, 217-239 Montague St, South Melbourne

Children’s store and creative art space Habitots closed its Albert Park store in March. However, it is continuing its art and music classes at party venue Apples and Jam in South Melbourne.

We are invited to try out one of the art classes in the new space. We really enjoy the unstructured creative play in a bigger area almost double the size of Habitots‘ previous art room.

The room is set up with different activity stations by a facilitator/teacher Olivia. Every week there’s a different theme – we are there for vegetable week – with similar activities provided in keeping with the theme.

There’s sensory play using a tub of lentils and a tub of water filled with various utensils and toys.

Little kids will enjoy the felt wall.

A painting session allows kids to paint on a wipeable fibreglass window. There’s also an opportunity to paint with veggies!


At the large craft table there’s a choice of pasting, making, stamping and play-doh.



There’s no requirement to do everything (or anything) so it’s a fantastic relaxed atmosphere for under 5s.


To mark the end of each session the kids can play with musical instruments and the bubble machine turns on!


Habitots hold weekly messy play sessions for 1-2 years, creative play for 2-5 years and music classes for babies from 3 months. Both of the art classes offer the same activities, it’s just that the messy play sessions are shorter at 40 minutes and the creative play sessions are 50 minutes. As such, younger/older children than the age bracket are able to attend either session, with a maximum of 12 children per class. You can also book classes for a term, half term or casual drop in for $20 a class.


Click here for places to go and things to do with babies and toddlers 

Click here for indoor places to go with kids. 

HOT Tips:

  • classes are up a flight stairs, so try to leave the pram downstairs;
  • smocks are provided;
  • messy play 2-3 years 40 minutes, creative play 3-5 years 5o minutes;
  • Term 2 classes are all listed below and are available to book as a full term, half term or casually (single class $20);
  • All term bookings will receive 2 make up classes per term;
  • limited free street parking;
  • walking distance to South Melbourne Markets or Albert Park shops.

Habitots, 217-239 Montague St, South Melbourne

Open class hours – check website for info.


Thanks to Habitots I have 5 x casual class spots in Term 2 to give away to 5 lucky readers. To win just follow the instructions below. Competition closes midnight Monday 15 May and winners notified via email. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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