For a Work-At-Home-Mom, I find myself outdoors more than I'd like to be. I prefer the expansive family room we've created for the kids to run around in, bicycle, make feasts in their wooden kitchen, or run trains on their track. But by mid-morning, I usually find both Ava and Noah near the front door - restless and squirmy. As if by some strong invisible magnetic pull, they are both drawn to be on the other side of the front door. Heat, bugs, pollen and all - we go.
Whether for a quick push on the swing, a pull around the neighborhood in their wagon, or a scavenger hunt for dandelions to blow on, it completely sets the stage for a better day. For all of us.
Lately, we've been using our bikes and the trailer for the kids to ride out to White Rock Lake. It's a two hour adventure for us there and back - but the kids [to my surprise] love it. Ava pulls my heart when she actually asks, "Ride our bikes Mommy?"
How can we refuse? Not only are we getting the exercise we need, but we are doing this together - learning and absorbing the natural things around us. People [from singles walking their dobermans to families marching in stride]... Trees [mysteriously standing like jungles above our heads]... wild flowers [in patches we all take a moment to see how in the midst of all this untouched grass, grows a single delicate flower our eyes have never seen before].
When we reach the lake, we'll look for ducks and feed them crackers or goldfish - whichever Ava can bare to part with first. If the park doesn't look too busy, we'll stop and let the kids stretch out their legs, and let Noah finish a bottle. Cycling as a family would not be possible without our new trailer. In fact, this is the only time Ava and Noah can sit together. They instantly become a team - conspiring when to squeal so we'd stop and check on them. They exchange snacks and drinks, and even sing along the bumpy trail. Giving them these types of opportunities to share and deal with the other being in their space - is genuinely priceless. And by the looks of it, they make a fine pair of little adventurers together...
1. We thought Noah would be a little too young for the trailer - but we made it work by adding burp cloths to the straps so they wouldn't rub against his sensitive skin. A Bike trailer is an investment. We love our family owned and quality customer service we get from Boyd at Dallas Bikes Works - look for a place that caters to families and experiences - and not a retail giant that will sell you anything.
2. Find a route. It'll take some time, but find a route you all enjoy. Make sure there are hills to challenge you and parks to rest at. We love White Rock Lake and the tons of people out there everyday so you never feel alone. Just be wary - cyclists at WRL are serious riders. They will yell at you if you go the wrong way or don't move. Here are some resources for locating a trail near you in Dallas or Collin County