Tuesday, September 01, 2009
Leisurely Bike Ride in the Woods--Not Exactly
I'm not a very outdoorsy person. I want to be, I really do, but I'm just not. But even I couldn't ignore this beautiful 70 degree morning so I psyched myself up to take Drue and Tate bike riding.
I do not enjoy bike riding. I really want to, but I don't. We have a bike trail just down the street from our house as well as another paved loop that encircles the playground at Reese's school.
We always start out with good intentions of taking the kids up to one of these bike trails to ride their little hearts out. But it never ends happily. Getting them there is half the battle. In one direction there is a hill that none of them can get up. The other direction is pretty flat but is on a sidewalk right next to the street and I freak if they get too far ahead or lag behind and they freak if their sibling gets too far ahead and they can't keep up.
One, or all three of them, usually ends up crying or tossing their bike aside and walking the rest of the way which leaves me and/or David to lug the abandoned forms of transportation alongside us. And since both trails are next to parks, they quickly lose interest in pedaling and choose, instead, to play on the playground equipment.
All of the aformentioned reasons are probably why Reese just now got her training wheels off.
Today, while she was at school, I decided that I could probably handle taking the other 2 out for a ride. So our mission wouldn't begin on a sour note, I tossed their bikes in the back of the van and drove them up to the bike trail 2 blocks from our house.
Drue needed a little encouragement. Tate was ready to go. I got their little helmets on (which almost ended our trip right then and there because Drue's helmet felt "kooky" on her) and they climbed up on their bikes.
Drue has grown five inches since her last checkup at the doctor. Her bike is less than a year old. She has outgrown her bike. Her long skinny legs were all over the place as she tried to pedal.
She was in the lead but kept stopping every 2 feet to look back at us. I encouraged her to keep going and to pick up some speed. The bike trail goes through a little patch of woods and no one else was around so it was ok if she got a little bit ahead. But she feels she has to be right next to one of us so that wasn't going to work. I put Tate in the lead instead, and off he went. I had to walk briskly to keep an eye on him which took me away from Drue's side, which she didn't care for too much but finally became ok with.
We had gone about 20 feet when one of Tate's training wheels flipped upside down and wasn't touching the ground anymore. I was able to unscrew it with my hand, which wasn't a good sign of its' sturdiness. It was either end our journey right there and head home, or screw it back on with my hand and take our chances. We took our chances.
We made it a little further down the path when Tate stopped abruptly, hopped off his bike, and came running back to me with something in his hand. That "something" was one of his pedals that had fallen off. I screwed that back on as well.
We did stop to play at the little park for a bit and then went riding a little longer. I was on the phone with a friend of mine when I realized Tate's little red helmet was getting farther and farther ahead in the direction of the street. I hollered out to him but he kept going. I hollered again, then had to abruptly end our conversation as I took off in a sprint to catch him.
Drue didn't approve of me running that far ahead without her and she began to protest loudly. Tate finally chose to heed my warnings and came heading back in our direction. I turned around to find Drue running towards me with her pedal in her hand.
Who bought them these piece of junk bikes?!
As I was screwing her pedal back on she decided to stick her duct taped warty finger in one of the holes on the top of her helmet where, of course, it got stuck.
After stopping 3 more times to screw their pedals back on, we made it back to the van and drove the two blocks back home. These two may just keep their training wheels on until they can drive....
Posted by Kristen at 11:10 AM