Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Quiet Streets/ Bike Riding





Streets are quiet here.  We hang out outside and I don't have to fear of cars rushing by our house traveling at 40mph when the speed limit is 25mph.  It is nice.  I think the speed limit around our house is 30kmp but I know if kids are around.... the cars slow down regardless of the speed limit... whereas at home, it seemed like the cars sped up or paid no attention to the fact that little ones were playing outside.  Before moving here we heard that it was safe and kid friendly and it would be common to see little kids walking around or riding bikes without parents anywhere in site.  Everyone knows everyone so it is hard for the kids to get lost or get in trouble.... it will just take some getting use to for this momma!  I'm not use to letting the kids wander off down the road without me having a close eye on them.  And one driveway down is about as far as I've let them go before.  Here, Addyson wanted to test this new found freedom and she took herself for a "walk" to the end of the street!
Sister went for a walk and Ethan and I sat in the driveway practicing letters.  I couldn't see Addyson and I didn't get up to keep peaking on her... I just let her try out her new freedom but stayed outside in case she needed to call for me... this in new for all of us!  She made it to the end of the road and came back to get her brothers!  They ended up all 3 going for a walk together and they went halfway around the block before Brad went to get them..... the rule was not to cross the street... I thought they'd walk to the end of the block and come back... I guess with the 3 of them they had a bit of extra bravery and decided to see just how far they could make it!  But, they had a 22 month old in tow with no shoes on so going all the way around the block for a first walk on their own was pushing it a bit too far.... at least for mommy and daddy's sake!
Addyson keeps wanting to test this freedom but still has a bit of anxiety about it.  Can't say I blame her... this world is SO much bigger in her eye and all of the houses on our block look the exact same and it turns out her fear was that she would forget where we lived.  After attempting on her own again and only making it to the driveway, she came inside and asked me to write our address on a piece of paper she could carry with her and she took her little "purse" with money in it... she was set to venture out again! : )  The big kids are starting with little trips down the sidewalk but I know it won't be long before they get super comfortable here and start paling around with friends!
Having bikes to ride is something we've been missing.  The 2 little kids have bikes on the boat coming with our stuff and Owen needed a new bike.  I saw 2 bikes for sale on camp so we picked those up to give us some fun on wheels while we wait for ours to show up. One of the bikes is a balance bike.  I figured this would be perfect for Addyson now and Ethan will be riding it soon enough I'm sure!
Again, the roads are so safe that she was free to practice on her own!!!
I found a "big boy" bike for Owen with no training wheels.  This is something I wanted to work on this summer... until we found out about the move... at which point teaching him to ride a bike got put on the back burner... until now!  I knew we'd be getting him a bike at some point so before we left the States I took him shopping for a new helmet.... and this is what he picked out.... I really tried to talk him out of it... this is something for BIG boys... not my BABY boy.... but he wouldn't be talked into a baby helmet!
New tennis shoes on?  Check.  New helmet on?  Check.  New bike ready to go?  Check.  A parent ready to run beside him?  Yep!  Off we go!!!!
So this is our first rodeo at this.... and we are just going with what we think we are suppose to do.  We tell Owen to peddle as we run beside him and try to let go to see how far he can make it before he starts to wobble over.... does this sound about right?!?!  Or is there a better secret?!?!
Luckily the night was BEAUTIFUL... probably one of the b est we've had since we've been here which made it easy to run beside him and let him keep trying over and over... we weren't sweating ourselves out.  He rode and rode and was even able to ride for a split second here and there on his own.  He isn't ready to ride by himself but at least we've started the process!!!  Any tips you have on teaching a child to ride a bike is much appreciated!
 Photo

1 comment:

Tara said...

We unscrewed the pedals off of Canaan's bike and made it like a balance bike. He could balance and use his feet to stop. After a few days, I put them back on and he rode alone right away since he had a good sense of balance.

I am loving your updates! I feel very international on my front porch in Goshen!