I love sending all 3 boys off to school. Max to preschool (3 days a week), Noah to Kindergarten, and Karl to NAU. Then it goes something like this:
Bike up the hill and down the hill on a very busy street to Marshall Elementary School. Drop off Noah at 8:40. Bike up a really steep hill to Acorn Preschool, let Max loose, and ditch the trail-a-bike. Then Karl gets to cruise a couple of miles through downtown to NAU campus.
And I pick them back up.
This is the ideal situation, of course. However, it only happens about once a week. Most days Karl needs to be at work earlier than 9 am. 2 days a week Max stays home with me and we eventually make our way over to the gym. Not too bad either.
We figured it won't hurt the kids to bike to school in sub-freezing temperatures as long as they are dressed appropriately. Balaclavas, gloves, and goggles are the way to go. The kids don't mind at all. They are so used to it that they hardly ever ask to drive. Good thing Karl is around because I am probably the biggest wimp in the family!
Actually - the funny thing is - the more adverse the weather conditions, the more likely Noah is to want to ride his bike. The other day it had snowed some over night and there was a lot of ice on the roads. After coming home from the pool, I considered taking him to school in the car. He was not thrilled, to say the least. When Karl and I decided that he will probably be fine and gave him the ok, he threw himself on the floor in ecstasy! Funny kid...
Now that Max is mostly on the trail-a-bike, I have less heart attacks about him careening into trees or parked cars. The 'only' thing I have to worry about is him actually staying on said trail-a-bike. The other day a concerned lady pulled up next to me with her window down and informed me that Max was not actually on the bike but hanging off the side. Yikes! Maybe I should get some review mirrors...
It's been great to see how comfortable and confident Noah has gotten on the bike. I just wish our way to school was a little safer with less lights and more sidewalks. I have to bite my tongue quite often when he is hopping curbs and practicing a track stand on a busy road. Yes - I am proud of the kid. No - I do not want him to get run over. I am just trying to let him do his thing and show that I trust him. He has been quite (i.e.very) oppositional lately anyway, so if I told him to stop, he'd most likely come up with even crazier ideas. Good thing the oppositional phase is only going to last another 15+ years!
Here's to giving our kids freedom to explore their own limits!