When you’re obsessed with bikes…

We’re at the table the other day, our son has a glass of water in front of him, but he’s obviously unhappy with it and says “I want a habcahsld”. Well, that’s what it sounds like, at least. Zak and I look at each other, puzzled. We ask him to repeat. We still don’t get it. We ask him to point. He shows the mug Zak and I have been drinking with. Then finally, Zak gets it. He’s asking for “one with a handlebar”. He wants a mug with a handle, but he doesn’t know the word or doesn’t remember it properly, so he’s asking for a handlebar instead…



I rediscovered biking last year. When our son got old enough and had a head big enough to wear a helmet and be parked be in a trailer, we bought ourselves some brand new bikes and some top-notch equipment, and went a-riding.

At first, I was elated. I felt like the child in me had come back, the 12-year-old who loved to go biking around her neighborhood. And I still enjoy our rides when the going is good.

The problem is:  we live at the bottom of a hill. A big hill. Since we have bikes and no car, we have decided to use them for transportation as much as possible so we save on booking cars from the Car Co-op and help the environment a little. That’s why we biked to our son’s birthday with 40 pounds of gear. That’s why last weekend, we biked to a friend’s house for a birthday party. It was about a 10 km ride, or more precisely 19 km round-trip.

But biking is hard. On the way to our friend’s place, it was almost all up, all the time. And I don’t really love suffering. Granted, afterward, I felt proud. Proud that I did it, proud that I didn’t need a car, proud that I didn’t spend a penny or waste a drop in gas, proud that I didn’t have to go to the gym after… I like the fact that I can use my bike to travel. But I can’t say I enjoy the ride when it’s hard. Of course, I liked the way back a lot better…

Tomorrow we’re planning on making it to another friend’s place. The ride is about 10km as well and we have never been that way, so we’re not sure exactly how hard it will be. It scares me, but then, what’s the worse that could happen? I have a lot of small gears, I can always stop and rest, I can always walk up the hill if I have to (although I would have to endure a bit of ridicule). And I know that after I will be proud and happily tired. But during… Well, let’s just not think about it!

Last night…

I asked my son if he wanted to read a book. Yup, he said. I pointed at one: this one? No, he replied, that’s French!

My husband was quicker than me to answer: That’s my excuse, Maman can actually read French. I was relieved to understand where the comment came from, because at first I thought he was just saying he didn’t want to read a French book. It baffled me, because I thought I didn’t think rebellion against the “other” language would come that fast. But no, he was just repeating what Daddy had been saying to him.

So we read that book…

Good advice

This morning, our son peed in his potty, then as he got up so his daddy could put a clean diaper on him, he exclaimed, with the pointed finger that comes with this kind of recommendation :

- Daddy, don’t drink my pee!

We laughed a lot, wondering where this came from, until we remembered that the day before, the cat had come in the room and started sniffing the potty after our boy had peed in it, and Zak had exclaimed, jokingly:

- Gourou, don’t drink his pee!

Obviously, someone was paying great attention…

Bedtime conversation

I usually am the one who puts our son to bed, and I always ask him questions about how his day went. I make sure I know most of the answers, so I can fill in the blank when he doesn’t say anything. And often, I’m surprised by how much he remembers, what he tells me and the sometimes completely unrelated things he talks about. Like last night, when all of a sudden he declared:

- I go have food on a picnic table.

A bit taken aback, I asked where?

- Kelowna, he replied…

We have been talking about Kelowna with him because we are heading there again soon (it’s almost time to go harvest some pears, plums and maybe even apples), but we never talked about a picnic or anything of the sort. Again, as I have said many times since our boy started showing signs of understanding the world around him, I so wish I could see what his thoughts look like inside of his fast-developing brain!

My knee hurts!

That’s what our son had been telling us for a few days last week, and although we did kiss the boo-boo and give him a hug when he said that, we didn’t take him all that seriously. Zak has had problems with his knee over the winter, so our son often complains about his knees to be like daddy.

Friday morning, however, he started crying when he got up from his bed and refused to put any weight on his leg, reverting to crawling (or being carried in our arms). So Zak biked to the clinic, where the doctor preferred to send him to a pediatrician to confirm her diagnosis. She gave him a choice between waiting for 4 hours at the ER or riding to another clinic for an appointment in half an hour. So Zak got on his bike again and pulled our son as fast as he could to the other clinic, where the pediatrician confirmed the first diagnosis.

The medical term didn’t register, but it appears that after you have had a virus (which I guess means that’s what our toddler and I were stuck with last weekend), you can get inflammation in your joints. They don’t know why or how, but it gets better after a few days. So we were told to watch our son carefully and run to the ER if it got worse.

It didn’t, and this morning our boy is walking normally again. But Saturday we went to a birthday party for two of his friends, and he was quite funny to see: he was walking like an old man, slowly and all stiff. He also milked the situation by asking to be carried quite a bit. And he didn’t expend enough energy, which started to really show last night when we had an exhausting meal-preparation hour with constant requests for attention.

But all is well that ends well. Once again, we are lucky.  I cross my fingers, hoping all of his medical problems will always be solved that easy!

Big boy…

After his first sleeping bag, our boy is trying this week his first real bedsheets. Up until now, he always slept in a sleep sack, this kind of wearable blanket that was made very popular by the research on SIDS (as the baby cannot get entangled – and choke – in it). But now that his sleep sack is getting too small, that he takes it off most nights and that the weather is getting cooler, he graduated to a real sheet and a real duvet in a cute Ikea duvet cover.

We went to Ikea because they seem to be the only store who sell linen with fun prints and designs in bright colors without the branding that usually goes with it. Other stores seem to have only Dora, or Disney linen. I know, some day our boy will discover the corporate world, but for now, I don’t think he’s missing anything by being kept away from TV and children’s characters! So the longer we can keep the status quo, the better!

Ikea also has another big perk: they follow the more stringent European safety rules, which means that their mattresses or linens do not contain carcenogenic fire retardant. At least I don’t think they do. You can never be 100% sure these days…

All that to say that he loves his new covers and it allows him to run upstairs at bed time, hide in his bed and wait for his daddy, who comes up growling like a monster, pretends to search for him and, when he finds him underneath the covers, tickles him until they’re both laughing their heads off.

I love my boys!