Thursday, April 18, 2013

Riding Bikes

Learning to ride a bike.  One of those milestones that means so much to a kid.  And because it means overcoming fear and being willing to take chances, it's interesting to watch, as a parent, and see when your kid takes the big step.  I think you learn a lot about your children by watching how they develop this skill...

Take my girls, for instance.  Ivie, her mommy's mini-me, is the most tentative of my children.  Macie, however, is more of a daredevil who acts first and thinks later.  So the stories of how they each learned to ride a bike won't surprise you...

Ivie FLIES around on her Razor scooter, and has for over the past year.  So it's been obvious that she has the balance necessary to successfully ride her bike.  But, until an unusually warm day this past winter (at age 6 1/2), she refused to let us take off her training wheels.  It was too "scary" of a thought for her, and, because she wasn't very fast on the bike, she preferred the scooter anyway.  The bike rarely left the garage.  So when we took the training wheels off and promised her an absurd number of marbles to give it a shot, no one was surprised when she got it on her first try.  But then winter weather came back, and the bike was parked until just a few weeks ago.  Once we pulled it back out this spring, there was again trepidation, particularly over the idea of going DOWNHILL, and the how-in-the-world-will-I-manage-to-stop-the-bike-from-careening-out-of-control fears took over her brain.  But, once conquered (again with the promise of marbles for trying!), Ivie has taken off and now enjoys going for multiple loops around our neighborhood, flying as fast as I will allow her down the hill at the end.

Watching Ivie's progression, I wondered if maybe there was a different technique to try with Macie.  Having seen the idea of "balance bikes" (two-wheeled bikes without pedals) and watching plenty of videos explaining how they worked, I decided to give it a go.  Having one show up at 1/2 price on a social shopping site sealed the deal, and the bike arrived a couple of weeks ago.

Macie, now 4 1/2, rode the balance bike for about 3 days before she started begging us to take the training wheels off of her Dora bike (Ivie's hand-me-down first bike).  Macie wanted to ride a big-girl bike just like Ivie and our neighbor, Emerson, who had also just recently removed her training wheels.  I wasn't too confident that she would be successful this quickly (because, let's be honest, I was pretty sure that 3 days of use was NOT enough for me to get my money's worth on the balance bike!).  But she proved me wrong, taking off after only a couple of tries with me running behind her and giving her a push.

So we now have 2 two-wheeled girls in our house, both of whom are crazy about riding!  I love watching them light up when we talk about how proud we are of them for being brave enough to give it a shot.

Of course, now I have a balance bike that we don't need anymore.  And since I ordered it on a bit of a whim, I also didn't think ahead and get a gender-neutral color that Bryce could someday use...  So does anyone need a PINK balance bike that is certain to teach your sweet little girl to ride without training wheels?!?   I'll cut you a pretty good deal on it...

Here is a quick video of the girls riding with me around the neighborhood.  Try not to listen too closely, or you might hear me breathing hard while doing the narrative.  Which is a bit embarrassing.  My only excuse is that there IS a little hill as we start the circle around the neighborhood, and we had just finished it when I started the camera!

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Easter Egg Hunts (2013)

Easter, 2013 left us with no shortage of Easter egg hunts (and a stockpile of candy on the flip side).  The girls each had a hunt with their classes at school on Thursday, all 3 kiddos enjoyed the Chapel Hill Country Club hunt on Saturday, and then, on Sunday, we connected with the Devers for our annual hunt in our adjoining yards. 

Macie School

Dale and I were both able to go to Macie's school hunt on Thursday morning.  The cold air didn't keep the kids from having a blast running around the playground scooping up eggs! 

Chapel Hill Country Club

Saturday, at noon, we were off to Chapel Hill Country Club.  This was my first experience at this hunt, as I have, over the years, stayed home with the "baby" in the family who wasn't old enough to go for the hunt.  This was our first year when all 3 could do it.  YAY!  I was excited to see the craziness that I had heard so much about...


Finally, Easter Sunday arrived, and it was time for our annual Herman/Dever Egg Hunt.  Since Bryce had been fighting an illness over the weekend, we wanted to make sure he got a solid nap.  So the Easter Bunny waited to come to our house until Bryce was asleep and the 5 girls had left the house to go run some errands.  When we returned, there were eggs everywhere!  The girls had their hunt first, and then we picked out some eggs that Bryce might like and let him "hunt" for them when he woke up.  It was a fun and beautiful afternoon (after a rainy morning).

Friday, April 5, 2013

Facebook: March, 2013

March 1 at 8:42p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman

March 3 at 5:14p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Bundled up for a walk with Daddy! 

March 3 at 5:50p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
I think we're gonna need some help getting out of here... 

March 4 at 12:13p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Spending part of spring break at the library enjoying Amelia Bedelia's antics!

March 5 at 1:04p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Day 2 of Spring Break = IMAX and Marbles! 

March 5 at 5:30p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Is there anything more frustrating than putting something "where it won't get lost", and then forgetting where that is? Come on, tooth fairy pillows. Show yourselves.

March 5 at 7:28p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Time to put Nina's cute creation to work for lost tooth #6, now that I have rescued it from the "Boys 12-24 Months" clothes box. #dontaskme

March 6 at 2:52p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Day 3 of Spring Break: Chocolate-covered strawberries (gone before I could take a picture!) and hot chocolate

March 7 at 9:48a

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Day 4 of Spring Break: EXERCISE! 

March 7 at 1:28p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Not surprisingly, Ivie is a big fan of the shopkick "game" at Target. It's like hide-and-seek! 

March 10 at 12:58p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
PJ's are gooood sliding pants!! 

March 10 at 4:14p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Might want to pull your pants up a bit, B-Man... 

March 13 at 9:34a

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Pretty cute video of my silly girls doing their versions of a little skit that some of you might recognize...

March 14 at 4:14p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Spending some time reading while big sis finishes Show-and-Tell at school.

March 15 at 4:17p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Spring stencils for entertainment at the UNC men's tennis match. 

March 16 at 3:29p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Just left UNC gymnastics meet. Girls are both crying because Elizabeth Durkac, their favorite gymnast, is graduating. #brokenhearts 

March 16 at 7:15p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Bryce's first movie night for Ramona and Beezus. The lying still lasted about 3 minutes.

March 20 at 5:55p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Dale just felt compelled to give the girls each a couple of reward marbles for forcing down their dinner without complaining about the dryness of the chicken in a new marsala recipe I tried. #notmybesteffort 

March 22 at 10:48a

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Out shopping without the kids. There is something funny about being able to text your 6-year old pictures so she can choose her backpack for 2nd grade.

March 22 at 5:07p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Scott, someday when you build us our dream home, we will be needing a few of these. Go ahead and start looking into them. I will start saving my pennies now.

March 24 at 1:44p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Ivie, while (belatedly) filling out Round 2 of the Mascot Challenge: "Macie, look, the M&M guy won!" Referring, of course, to Syracuse's Otto the Orange. 

March 24 at 4:18p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Tie-dyed and marbleized!! 

March 26 at 2:23p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Love this!

March 28 at 9:05a

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Egg "hiding" duty for Macie's hunt at school!

March 29 at 5:28p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Bring on Miss Li's scalp massage! Serving Dale (and now his daughters) for 17 years... 

March 30 at 12:25p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
A successful first egg hunt for the Bug 

March 30 at 9:34p

Amy Schaeperkoetter Herman
Chapel Hill Country Club Easter Egg Hunt