Monday, April 16, 2012

Bicycle Sunday

When the weather warms up, the City of Seattle closes off auto access to portions of the street along Lake Washington so that bikers and others on small wheels and on foot can roll along and meander in peace, without having to share the road with large vehicles.

With this weekend's warm (for Spring in Seattle) weather, I felt compelled to finally secure a tricycle for Dylan and bicycle for Ava. I'd been checking Craigslist for weeks and finally found a tricycle in good condition, at the right price, the right distance and from a seller who actually responded in a timely manner. Really: what is up with listing something for sale on a service that used email for communication, then not responding to email?!

The two biggest selling points on the trike? A parent's push/steer bar and a "trunk" on the back just perfect for holding a few Thomas and other assorted mini trains.

So we got the trike, but couldn't reach the seller of the girls bike we wanted. So we just hit our usual fave Target to see what was available. It's funny to flash back to last summer when we did a bit of a dry run on this bike purchase. In the toss up between a Barbie bike and the Disney princesses, the princesses won because of the doll carrier that was included. Like the trike, cargo space is critical!
While Dylan at first didn't seem to understand that it was for him, he soon jumped right on and was thrilled with his new wheels. So was I, because it means that I can now rollerblade alongside them instead of hunching over Dylan's scooter to push him along. Goodbye back pain, hello independent riders.

In contrast to Dylan's quiet joy, Ava's bicycle-induced squeals were so loud dolphins at Sea World said, "What the...?"

We hit a local bike trail and Ava did great, only taking one small spill before getting the hang of applying the brakes when she feels like she's going faster than she feels comfortable. All we need now is a few more days with temperatures north of 60. Happy kids? Check. Yet another cool childhood milestone that makes me feel even more like a parent? Check. Simple pleasures that remind us: blessings abound.

Sense of self

Dylan's burgeoning sense of self.

He knows who he is, even if he pronounces his name "Dy-n."

What's funny is that since being released from speech therapy, his word count and complexity have continued to grow by leaps and bounds. Still, some things he says are not so clear, like his name. But other times, he clearly articulates phrases like "Wake up Daddy" and "Ava: what the heck!" That one threw me for a loop tonight.

He's also clearly catching on to the verbal wackiness that ensues around here. We've always played this ridiculous game where we insert the sound "shhhh" into an otherwise normal sentence as if we really have something important to convey. It started out as a bedtime thing when one of us was trying to go to sleep and the other was piping up with some question or comment about the day. The sleepy one would finally say something like, "That's a great question. Let me check my shhhh!" As in, "Shush. I'm trying to sleep."

We did it with Ava too, and it has become an occasional bedtime game. Like, "Okay, it's time to lay down and put your head on your shhh!" or "Oh man, Ava what is all that in your hair?! It looks like you fell in shhhh!" Any permutation is guaranteed to elicit peals of laughter.

Recently, as we tucked Dylan in, he piped up, "Mommy: I said shhhh!" Whaaat?! His proclamations are so unexpected that they crack us up every time. This kid, like his sister, is a hilarious character in his own way and I love watching him develop.