April 4, 2007

I had gotten Zak a bike for Christmas and Zoe a seat to ride along and we recently ordered a bike for me. Last week it was finally nice enough to head out for our first family bike rides. Zoe made it quite clear that she did not want to wear her helmet, or for that matter look at it. I finally distracted her enough to pop the helmet on, which was followed by unnaturally loud screams and cries. Zak and I attempted to sooth her, but we could not find the end to her misery. Zak decided just to take off and she if she would kind of enjoy the actual ride. She did calm down, but I don’t think she was actually enjoying herself. She started to cry as soon as they got out of sight of our front yard, where I was standing snapping as many pictures as I could. After a full 90 seconds of riding they pulled back up and Zoe us tugging at the helmet. After taking it off we realized that I had accidentally put her helmet on backwards. Perhaps the fact that it was so low it practically covered her nose and she couldn’t see a thing was the reason she wasn’t too happy. You could call it a silly first time mom mistake, but really it’s just stupidity.

The following times we went out, we first made extra sure the helmet was facing the right direction and Zoe seemed to really enjoy gliding along the streets of Brookfield. On Sunday we rode the 3 miles or so to the zoo. We brought backpack containing a nice picnic lunch and after eating we went to the Family Play Zoo, Zoe’s favorite part of the zoo. She played with a hamster, watered plants, colored a picture, mopped up after the lemurs, and called to the cats. We then decided it was time to head home, as the sky was starting to darken (Zak had looked at weather.com about 12 times before we left and guaranteed that the 30% chance of rain would not actually hit us.)We got about a block outside of the zoo when a sprinkle quickly turned to a heavy rain. It was a miserable ride home for me (my legs hurt for recently starting this new exercise, my bum hurt from sitting on a very uncomfortable seat four days in a row, rain had seeped through a coat, sweatshirt, and a long-sleeved t-shirt, as well as through shoes and thick socks. Not fun.) Zak handles situations like this with such ease that I’m not sure he even noticed it was raining, although I imagine he wish he didn’t have to wait so often for me to catch up. Zoe, though, was having the time of her life. Zak and her helmet blocked ever drop of rain and she was as content as could be.

In spite of the rough zoo ride, we’ve got for a nice ride everyday for nearly a week now. And Zoe has fallen in love with it. The other night after dinner she brought her shoes and socks to the stairs, sat down and patiently attempted to put them on. Once Zak finished tying her shoes, Zoe went and pointing at the keys. Zak got them and let her lead the way to the backyard. She then pointed at the shed and once that was opened pointed to her bike seat. She was letting us know she wanted to go for a second ride of the day!

We all love our new family hobby…in fact Zak has mentioned that we could get rid of one of the cars. I told him, he’d have a long, long bike ride to Aurora each day.

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