Monday, May 19, 2008

Bike Riding

Guess what my just-turned-four-year-old did today for the first time? Ride a bike! On her own! I didn't actually get to see her ride. She was at the bike store with Matt, and they took a bike out to the parking lot. She is so proud of herself, and I can't wait to see her.

I always joke that she was a precocious pedaler. She started pedaling on her tricycle not long after her second birthday. She is a maniac on her tricycle. Seriously. Her little legs go so fast that they are just a blur. Sorta like the roadrunner!

One of the reasons I love our cohousing community is that all the homes face inward on each other into three "pods" of homes. The sidewalks connecting all the homes and pods make roundabouts that are perfect for biking. The cohousing kids and their friends use it like a racetrack (much to the chagrin - and sometimes pure annoyance - of the adults in cohousing!). I don't mind because my kids can ride all over, and I don't have to worry about riding into the street.

So Kate has been quite content riding her tricycle the last two years. Then last summer, Matt saw a family on the nearby bike path using LIKEaBIKEs and immediately wanted to get them for our kids. It was pricier than I wanted to pay, but I found that Kettler (which is the brand of our tricycles and scooters - I love 'em!) made a similar Sprint bike for much less (there are actually a bunch more brands/versions out for this summer than last summer). We got them, but the kids really lacked interest and just wanted to ride their tricycles. So we put them away for the winter. BUT when we got them back out a few months ago, Kate really took to the little bike.

The concept of these small two wheeled bicycles with no pedals is that you learn to balance without having to worry about pedaling. You use your feet to gain speed, lift your legs, and balance. Theoretically learning to balance will help transition to riding a regular bike.

A few weeks ago Kate started telling us that she wanted a "two wheel bike with pedals and a kickstand." She was pretty specific. Occasionally she'll add that she wants a basket or a bell, but mostly she wants the pedals and the kickstand. This weekend a neighbor had an old, retro children's bike that she was planning on selling at a garage sale. She offered it to us first, and we took it (that's it in the pic at the top of the post). It needs a bunch of work, but Matt loves getting bikes fixed up. He took it in this morning to have all the "parts" taken off the frame. The frame goes someplace else to be repainted, and then back to the bike shop for replacement parts. In less than 2 weeks, Kate should have a two wheel bike to race around on.

Only problem? No kickstand. But I think with a cute basket and a noisy bell, she won't even notice!

6 comments:

The Cole Mine said...

Such a darling bike! Good for Kate! Be sure to post a pic of the newly painted bike...

Josh hates his tricycle and it makes me SOOO sad...We are working on it though...

Penny said...

You can probably get a kick stand attached at the bike shop.

Go Kate! Tim rides his still with trainer wheels. He doesn't get much opportunity though - I wish we had a flatter section.

Dawn said...

The bike is so cute! I love the way you describe how your community is set up. My kids have never really had a safe place to ride their bikes like that. We have to put the bikes in the car and take them down to the park

badhuman said...

You can usually find kids bikes for a great price on Craigslist.

Jen said...

I LOVE Kate's new bike...I can't wait to see it fixed up. Be sure to post pictures.

Colorado Knitter said...

That is totally my dream bike! It will look great with a basket and a bell ~ I might actually have a really great bell too if you haven't already gotten one.