Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Two Wheels

Ted loves the chance to get out on his balance bike and go zooming all around the shop.  His first dalliances were fraught with the 'wobble factor', which made his interest in pursuing it wane just slightly.  However after finding his balance and realising the joy experienced by the feet up, zooming off position, well there hasn't been much stopping him. Well, walls.  Walls stop him.
Harriet, on the other hand, suffers from first child syndrome in the bike department.  The ignorance of the parents is transferred to the child.  Harriet never had a balance bike - I didn't really know quite what they were about despite seeing a few of them around.  They weren't that common back when Harriet was interested in adding a two-wheeling transportation bow to her quiver.  And so she suffers the indignity of being able to ride a bike, but not being able to start off or stop effectively.

One night we were sitting around talking about Harriet's issues with riding and how it was a vicious cycle - she can't ride, so we don't bother going out to cycle, so she never improves, and around it goes.  James jumped up (ok well he straightened his back in his chair and raised his voice slightly in volume) and said "There must be someone who offers this as a service".  Enter stage left - Donna.  

Donna spent one hour with Harriet.  Within about ten minutes Harriet could start off on her own.  Within about another fifteen minutes she could start on her own going up a hill.  And  there you have it - the Donna magic has been wrought.  If you have any problems with your child's bike riding skills I couldn't recommend Donna enough.  The woman is a miracle worker.  

I did try to engage Ted elsewhere during the course of the lesson (see him enjoying the flying fox there?  That lasted all of about ten minutes) but he was so excited to know that Harriet was going to be able to ride her bike that he just wanted to be a part of it.  Right there and then.  Regardless of what anyone said to him about anything!

The next day Ted told me that he wanted to ride his bike to Cornersmith.  Normally I run/walk there and do a specific circuit that is 5kms, but I thought if he wanted to ride there we may have to shave off a kilometre or so.  But he did it!  It took us a while (for one thing we had to stand by Marrickville train station and wait for the next train to come along...and when two came at once there was much rejoicing) and he was over it when we got to the bottom of our street, but other than that he had a great time.  In fact he didn't even mention anything about it to James that evening, so it mustn't have registered on his scale of 'things that have happened in my day' at all.  

He devoured a pepita and banana loaf with ricotta and honey while we were there and received many comments on...well...I can't remember exactly what they were about but when Ted hits the streets he just tends to receive comments.  He chats to all and sundry, looks like an angel from far enough away and then when you get closer you can see the dirt...and boogers...and food.  Then you look closer and see the bags under my eyes...and my tired tone...and realise there may be more than meets the eye here

Ted has also been enjoying Harriet's wardrobe this week. When we went out for my birthday activities, he chose one of Harriet's skirts (made for her by Lou), wellie boots, a long sleeved top (phew) and the felt hat from Jay.  Harriet's self styling wasn't far off that particular pinnacle of awesome either - the Hogwarts scarf teams well with the bright red boots too.
The children and James went out to perform some mystery activities in the morning, and after catching up with Lou briefly, we were off to Clovelly for our favourite tofu burgers in the world (they cannot be beaten!), a bit of a wander amongst the cliff rock pools, then on to Centennial Park where we all went cycling around the park for an hour.  James won the award for most patient parent ever in the whole entire world for talking Harriet back from the edge a couple of times when she was freaking out about being close to the cars, but other than that little hiccup the whole experience was fabulous! Ted really loves being in the seat on the back of the bike too - I'm going to buy a bike in spring for sure this year.  Inspired as I am by Brooke, you should head over there and read how she's going to change the world, one kilometre at a time.  Go Brooke!  I'm so proud of you!


sarah black said...

Oh Lordy Lord, could you all be any more awesome?

Lou said...

So happy to see all the bike love going on! I can't believe Ted rode to cornersmith and back - that's a long way for little legs. Go Ted!