Thursday, December 26, 2013

The Magic Trike

Elise was the reason my 7 year old didn't learn to ride a bike until she was 6.  We had given up on bikes as a family experience.

We gave up on bikes around the time her weight went over the trailer limits...and our muscle's coping options...she is terrified of the insecure-ness of bikes.  She is petrified of even the exercise bikes upstairs.  I bought her one that I hoped she could use for exercise alone and to get her used to bikes in general, hoping we could eventually graduate to a *real* one.  It was seriously ugly.

I have been chatting with my local bike guy about building her a tricycle.  Like this:

We have spent several sessions where I realize something and go back to him to see if it is feasible and how much it would cost to make it work. 

We were talking a minimum of $500.  Probably more.

Because this is a rather large cost, we had opted to wait another year, until she was 12, as she will probably be within an inch of her final height.

2 weeks ago, I found a listing on a Facebook local yard sale group for a trike.  It looked so cool, and it's cost was less than half of the Amazon listing.

I chatted with the seller and Ethan and I decided that it was such a cool option that had a HUGE possibility, and we decided it was worth the trial.

So I broke my neck, to get an hour across town to buy this bike, when I should have been getting ready for Christmas.

Elise is so hard to buy for.  I spent very little on her for her birthday, because it makes no sense to spend big for ceremony's sake, and I decided that if she discovered anything during the year that she got excited about, that I would make up for it then.

Because the Mobo Trike is about 6 inches off the ground, it's rather like a bike and a Big Wheel got married and had a baby.  Because of its low profile, it is significantly less wiggly and scary sensorily.

The handles are a little different, so there was a learning curve.  But she had ridden a trike with a similar driving mechanism when she was in pre-K.  It took about 3 minutes to talk her onto the bike, 5 minutes for the steering idea to make sense, 15 minutes for her to remember, another 10 to remember the hand-brake, and 15 minutes for her to not slam her feet down on the pavement and yell "Scary!!   Fast!!"  There will need to be another few sessions to remember you always have to peddle in the same direction, but all in all, it was pretty much a miracle.  Easy, fun, and almost a typical experience.

She did great, and I plan to take her to my church parking lot, and set her free sometime over Christmas Vacation.

Here are a few pictures for you to enjoy, a helmet will be added next time, but with all the sensory issues, and that she was unlikely to fall off, it wasn't as necessary for our start trip.  In 20 square feet of driveway.

And that, Ladies and Gents, was darn close to a Christmas Miracle!!!

I hope that your holidays and Christmas are lovely and full of good memories...and we'll check in again, soon!!!

Friday, December 6, 2013

Celebrity Crush

So Elise is eleven.

When I was eleven, I had my first celebrity crush.  Errol Flynn made my heart flutter.  I know, weird.  I'll take my geek points with pride, thanks...

Elise's best friend, Megan, is super in love with One Direction.  Like, that was her birthday party theme.  And she got pillows and purses with their teen heartthrob faces all over them...And her friends are attempting to raise $ to send her to a concert, to blow her sweet mind.  HERE, in case you want to spend the $5 of a Starbucks to make a little girl sparkle with joy...

I got to thinking today who Elise's first heartthrob would be.  Someone who makes her jump and scream?


She knows the words to all his songs.  She has him on her ipod.  She has a plush version of him that she kisses.  She doesn't miss his movies.  She loves him.

Totally sigh worthy, right??

'Course it doesn't hurt that he's as obsessed with Christmas as she is....

Thursday, December 5, 2013

The Hissy Fit I Have Not Had

I am lightly hopped up on cold and flu medicine, so forgive the brutal honesty, the poor grammar and any bizarre spellings.

I have questioned the wisdom of posting this, but have decided that it is wiser than finishing my Holiday PSA post while in this questionably honest mindset.

I had a dream last night where I had several people announce that they were pregnant.  For some reason, several of these were public and involved crowds of people milling about offering their congratulations and the blushing mama said all the usual things...and in two cases, I reverted back to my old self and went apoplectic and verbally dressed them completely down for one of their comments...

Now, these things have been said 639 billion times...and I tend to react the in one of three ways about one of the pat answers...

"I don't care if it is a boy or girl, I only want a healthy baby."

Now, I know my reactions are colored by my own experiences...and I used to not think anything about that simple sentence, but these are the things that now go through my head:

1)  I sometimes only have a flicker of annoyance.  Like an annoying fly.  I know that health is important and something to be a matter of fact, I know more than most, what an amazing gift a traditional, healthy birth is...but if everything doesn't go according to plan, you are still a parent and you will still fall madly in love with the tiny person that you are suddenly and abruptly in charge of and it is still good and a blessing.

2)  Occasionally, when a friend confesses to wanting a particular gender, I have been taken with an overwhelming hope that they don't get their desire...not because I don't want them to be happy, but because I think they may be missing out on the Real Happiness, blessing and general awesomeness of:
                          a)  not missing out on a particular gender
                          b)  getting the life that you didn't plan for

And, sometimes, I think that the lack of perfection or health falls under "b".

I have a LOT of friends with kids with varying forms of disabilities.  Some disabilities are frustrating, some are difficult, some are heartbreaking, some are almost more than they can bear.  But, I can assure you, that NOT ONE would give their kid back.  All of us would love to see our kids not struggle, and we certainly would love an easier path for ourselves.  But I have never spoken to a parent, that, if given a choice of their child with all their heinously glorious issues, or to never have them, would choose to have never had their child.

Everyone can speak to SOME blessing that they received in their path, no matter how difficult. 

3)  And every once and a while, I am taken with a mind-numbing black rage in which I feel their comment as a scorn against my baby.

I am taken with the full on crazy obsession that my baby, no matter how far outside the norm, is the most delicious specimen of babyhood, toddler hood, childhood, or adolescence there ever there was....and sometimes, when I hear that off the cuff comment, I want to tear your throat out for even thinking that my precious isn't worth having...that you wouldn't want my baby, my life, my experience...   NOW, I know rationally, that even with a perfect child, you probably don't want my kid, BUT in my eyes, I love my child and I wouldn't trade them for ANY OTHER CHILD, ever.  And if the idea even flits through your mind that you won't think the same of your child, no matter the lack of perfection, that breaks my heart.
Consider that every child is the possibility of...everything...
And that's somehow always worth the price.