Oliver rode his bike for the first time last week. He pulled his red hand me down bike out of the garage, put his foot on the pedal and started to ride. It was that simple. After two years scooting around on the LIKEaBIKE he was ready, the bike came easy. Wyatt had the same seamless transition at five years old, just as they outgrow the LIKEaBIKE. I’m still amazed.
Our first go around with Amelia learning to ride involved training wheels and a lot of running behind the bike, falls on the grass, and scraped knees. Training wheels are helpful but they rattle and the bike dips from side to side and I never knew how much I didn’t prefer them until once again I’ve avoided them. Or the achy back from hunching over to hold the back of the seat while she learned to stay upright. The first few days Oliver sometimes wanted a little help holding the handle bars straight as he started out, now he’s completely on his own.
I love the LIKEaBIKE for preschoolers, hands down the boys’ favorite. The fact that it also teaches them to ride a bike makes it even better.
Today is the last day of school and I’m thrilled. The kids and I need to go nowhere for awhile–right now I think we could do nothing for the entire summer. Allegra Goodman (The Cookbook Collector) wrote a short story “La Vita Nuovo” about a young woman looking after a boy one summer in Boston. The first day they decide to do nothing and from there whimsically explore the city, eating ice cream, riding the T, walking along the river. Their freedom reads like a fairy tale.
For some kids, camps are a great escape, an adventure from routine. We fall into the one or two week of camp max category. The rest of the days we hold a loose schedule of waking up, checking our energy level and then formulating a plan. We bike, hike, take swim lessons, go to the library, make picnics. Often summer themes develop, last year most days we walked our puppy to the coffee shop for late morning eggs and afternoons rode bikes up and down the same hill.
I book some babysitting time, play days with other kids to keep the mood positive. The kids still fight and they also build forts. We go to bed a little later and wake up slower. And as much as I can’t wait to begin, by the end of August I will long for the arrival of the morning school bus. Summer is perfect that way.