Monday, April 23, 2012

Pedal pedal pedal

Let's see... a quick catch-up before what I really sat down to write about.

I made it to tax time.  I got my stuff to the accountant a week before the deadline.  I called and emailed and reminded them that we would be leaving town for spring vacation and if they needed us to sign anything they needed to let me know so we could do that.

We went on spring vacation, hiking, driving, getting lost, driving too far, getting lost again, hiking some more we had a  marvelous time!  I have pictures I will post.

We came back.  No word from the accountant.  Tax day passed.  Still no word from the accountant.  I start to worry.  But with my head firmly in the sand I wait for them to call.

Hubby went to Sweden.  SVEEEDEN.  For nearly two weeks.

Hubby's friends from India came to visit.  For about three days.  They are congenial, kind, painfully well mannered.  A husband and his wife and their five year old daughter.  They speak English beautifully.  They stayed in Hubby's office, I actually didn't see too much of them, other than when they took me and the girls to dinner their last night here, and when I drove them to the airport.

Then this weekend came.  I try to keep us occupied when Hubby's out of town, weekends are tough.  I like having the other parent to foist child care responsibilities onto.  I have noticed I have a tendency to try and get things cleaned around the house when he's around, which might seem like a bad idea, but since his usual posture around the house is trying to catch up on sleep, and enjoying just being in the family cave, it kind of works to have me puttering around.  Sometimes.  Othertimes not so much.  But anyway despite my initial efforts to clean something because after taxes and vacation and company, not to mention STILL WAITING FOR CARPET in the basement the house is a disaster, it was absolutely beautiful outside.  All weekend.
Sunday afternoon Thing 2, who is the outdoors-motivated one of the three of us, couldn't get me or Thing 1 to jump on the trampoline or skip rope with her.  So I suggested we give the old bike riding thing another try.

One of my failings as a parent is my daughters, at 8 and 10, do not know how to ride bicycles.  Oh, they got to the point where they could pedal around, but neither one could start or stop themselves.

We haven't tried it since...  Geez... Maybe last year at this time?  Maybe the fall before that?  It's been a while.  I probably blogged about it.  Thing 2 had always been more enthusiastic about riding a bike than Thing 1, who drags her feet (figuratively) and whines (literally) and generally hates the whole idea.  Thing 2 has taken it as a challenge to ride better than  her sister so she was doing really well at the end of our last session.  Back then Thing 2 could pedal confidently around the school playground by herself, but needed help starting and stopping.  Thing 1 whined and wobbled with  me running along beside.

So yesterday I pumped up the tires and took them to an empty parking lot.  Thing 1 was whining the whole drive over can't we PULEEEEZ go to dinner instead?  But Thing 2 was eager.  
The other problem we have that I failed to mention is we only have one bike, a situation I plan to remedy soon.  But it meant they had to take turns waiting in the car and riding.

I took Thing 2 first.  It would seem she has forgotten most of what she knew.  She made me trot around behind her, helping her start and stop.  There was a slight slope to the parking lot we were in, enough to make them get some speed on one side and have to pedal pretty hard on the other side.  I'd trot along with her on the down hill to help her with the turn, then give her a push to get her up the slight incline.  She would pedal a little, then stop, and we'd start the round again.

She did pretty good, learned how to stop without falling down.  I was puffing pretty good, and rather expecting Thing 1 to whine her way out of her turn.  Thing 2 and I went back to the car, and Thing 1 bounced out and announced she was ready for her turn.

Thing 1 also seemed to have forgotten a little, but she also seemed to pick it back up pretty quickly.  After a quick lesson on back pedaling, she started putting her feet down and stopping nicely.  She even used the hand brakes a little.  Then to my absolute shock she told me she wanted me to not hold her at the beginning, and she'd start on her own.  I trotted alongside, coaching her, then she pulled her feet up and off she went!  And then she did it again!  When I'd reach for her to steady her, she'd say "No, let me do it," and she did!  She was riding from the beginning to the end by herself.

Of course I was performing my job as cheerleader admirably, nearly wetting myself with the jumping up and down.  She beamed.  That's the only word for it.  She was so proud of herself.

And I didn't get pictures!  I was too busy running alongside or jumping up and down!


I am going to include the Southern Utah pictures though. Because I am too lazy to start another blog about it by itself.

This is Little Wild Horse.  The girls made it beautifully, quite the little hikers.  We didn't do Bell Canyon, though, just up and back Wild Horse.

 The wind was blowing so hard while we were in Goblin Valley we didn't stay very long.  We got sand and grit in our teeth and ears and coating every exposed surface.
 I've always found these vinyl family silhouettes kind of odd, then I heard someone say they are an invitation to pedophiles.  My favorite was a set I saw of the deadbeat family, mom and daughter pregnant and smoking, dad and son slovenly and slouching.  These are my second favorite.  Why they stopped there, I don't know.
"Keep goin, Vern! Just go ahead and wrap them all the way around the van!"
 We did the long hike to Delicate Arch, and again the girls did fabulous.  No complaining, just tripsing along.  It is so nice to have them at this age!

We did have a lot of wind, again.  

All in all a lovely trip, a great spring break!

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