Have you listened to the latest NPR health story? In Many Families Exercise Is By Appointment only? The story highlights two very different approaches to kids and activities and how their parents ensure they get exercise. Some families choose organized sports, driving kids to various practices and games. Some choose walking and biking and playing outside.
Which is better? To schedule or not to schedule? And if you schedule, how do you transport kids to all of their various activities? By car? Or by bike?
I sometimes take this issue up a notch and start to worry about over-scheduled kids. What about them? Do they really enjoy having that much going on? Don’t they just want to hang out at home on occasion?
If you were blissfully unaware of this problem, don’t fret, you can find books and articles on the subject. You too can read about how to avoid over-scheduling your kids. Then you can sit down and watch a documentary and learn about the perils you will certainly face if you don’t get this problem resolved now. After you have yourself in a tizzy about your kids future, you can go back to news and articles regarding childhood obesity. The grim stats will certainly depress you: 18 percent of kids are obese in the United States. “Childhood obesity has more than doubled in children and tripled in adolescents in the past 30 years”
Feeling crazy, confused and on-edge yet? I know I am.
What’s a parent to do? To schedule or not? To relax or worry? Continue reading
The tree came down weeks ago and 2013 is already in full swing. I know I’m a bit late, but I forgot to wish you all a Happy New Year. Happy New Year, everyone! (just trying to keep the party going a little bit longer) Whoo-hoo!!!
Did you make any resolutions? Sticking to them? This is about the time of year that most resolutions fizzle out. I don’t know about you, but I’m with the 30 percent of people who break their resolutions by the end of January.
Two of mine are totally busted and the third is merely hanging on by threads:
- Learn and practice Spanish for 30 minutes every day. Oops, it’s been weeks since I logged on to my Livemocha account
- Do the Primal Workout every day. Yeah, I ran like Grok once, and did a few wall squats. But daily workouts? Busted!
- Write every day. I’ve been better about that, but I can’t say I do it every single day.
There’s a reason habits and resolutions are such a hot topic every year: we really, really, really want to change, but our pesky bad behaviors are difficult to break, and new routines are hard to stick to! Continue reading
Let’s talk about motivation. What drives you to ride your bike or walk? Why on earth — especially during these sodden, cold winter days — do you commute via bike or feet over a warm, dry car?
A little housekeeping first: when used in the same sentence as bikes, commute has many definitions. Most people associate commute with work. But work isn’t the only destination for a commute. What about school? or play, activities, errands, appointments, or even to run kids here and there? Maddie, for example, is a bike commuter in our eyes. And for the purpose of this article, if you use a bike to “get around” (say, any use not strictly for sport), then you are a bike commuter too. This article mostly refers to “bikes.” But if your needs are better met by mentally substituting “walk” or “scoot” or “multi-modal” instead of “bike” as you read this post, you have our blessing.
This discussion is not new, our bike tribe has been talking about this topic for years. Back in 2008, Kent Peterson did some posts: why do you bike commute? / Why don’t you bike commute?“
You’ve heard of first world problems, right? Most people who live in the world’s wealthiest nations have abundant choices. One of those is the option to choose our mode of transportation. To get from point A to B, we can drive or walk or take the bus or use a bike, a scooter or a unicycle, or even hire a town car. Us first-worlders are blessed (cursed?) with commute options. Continue reading
Posted in alternative transportation, bigger than here, bikes, Commute, Everyday Biking, sustainability
Tagged biking, Commute, motivation, walking, why commute by bike?, why?
Carfreedays and Shopping: the Journey to Bikes
Tim and I didn’t always grocery shop by bike.
Before the summer of 2007, other than an occasional walk to the store, we bought and transported groceries exclusively in cars. At the time we owned a bike trailer and we could have used that to grocery shop. But dragging it out of the basement or garage and hooking it up to the bike just to go to the store? Nah, too much trouble; the car was easier. Panniers were the same, I had plenty of those lying around. But I was a busy mom and shopped for a family of 4, I could barely fit a days worth of groceries in two panniers, let alone groceries for a week.
August 2007, enter two Xtracycles. Those bikes changed everything. Continue reading
Posted in alternative transportation, bigger than here, bikes, cargo bikes, neighborhoods, shopping
Tagged carfreedays, groceries, groceries by bike, grocery shopping, history, shopping by bike, tips
I really enjoyed reading Todd’s latest post. Especially the retrospective and the Clever Cycles back story.
Todd and Martina have been riding Xtracycles since 2001. I knew they were cargo bike early adopters, but I hadn’t thought about the chronology or the details until I read the post. Continue reading
Posted in alternative transportation, bigger than here, bikes, cargo bikes, family cycling, longbikes, sustainability, xtracycle
Tagged bikes, cargo bikes, Clever Cycles, early adopters, old, xtracycle
photo by David Clifton
If you’re bored with trip stories, you’ll just have to sit tight and wait a little longer for our excitement to pass. Because here at carfreedays HQ we’re not done talking about our Pacific Coast Bike tour.
Bike touring is one of those life changing experiences: you’re not quite the same after returning from an extended tour. But it takes a few weeks and months for those lessons to reveal themselves. Even though we’ve been home for 51 days, we’re definitely still processing the experience. And finding meaning and life lessons in the most mundane parts of the tour. Continue reading
Posted in bigger than here, bike touring, bikes, extravehicular activities, family cycling, Pacific Coast Bike Tour
Tagged family, family bike touring, humor, kids, life lessons, Pacific Coast Bike Tour, travel
Our Pacific Coast Bike tour is O V E R . We’ve been back for a while now but it’s taken me this long to process the trip and figure out what I wanted to say about the amazing experience of riding 946 miles in 22 days with 2 tandems and 2 kids under 12.
Can I just say Wow and leave it at that? Continue reading
Posted in bigger than here, bike touring, bikes, extravehicular activities, family cycling, Pacific Coast Bike Tour, summer
Tagged bike touring, bikes, carfreedays, family bike touring, Pacific Coast Bike Tour, summer, tandem, travel
Are you interested in learning more about the Seattle Children’s Livable Streets Initiative? Head on down to their open house at Gould Hall on Saturday, June 23rd and find out what they’ve been up to. Continue reading
One of our favorite bikers in Seattle has become a family biker and he now has a new blog. And I must say, he’s on fire. Davey is single-handedly putting us old and lazy bloggers to shame. I love his writing and his playful humor, be sure to start at the beginning.
We always enjoy running into Davey on the road. He takes the time to stop, say hello, chat for a bit and share funny stories. I leave these impromptu meet-ups with a smile on my face and just a little more hope for humanity. Davey is good people. Continue reading
128 kid bikes, add some parent bikes, 8 dozen doughnuts, much-needed coffee for the parents who don’t like to get up earlier than necessary, police escorts riding with the kids and blocking intersections with patrol cars = successful Bike to School Day.
We hope you enjoyed Bike to School Day and Bike to Work Day!
more photos here
– Anne and Tim
Posted in bigger than here, bikes, extravehicular activities, family cycling, neighborhoods, School, seattle, sustainability
Tagged Bike to School Month, family, Family Cycling, kids, School