Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Folly and Crisis hit the trails

I am constantly wanting to define our family as an active and connected family rather than what we really are, 4 people who live independent lives under the same roof.  With 2 TVs, 3 computers and an x-box we can easily live in our own little worlds.  I have an idealistic vision of how our family should look and when the occasional opportunity arises to create that experience for even a moment I try to capitalize on it.

Enter Memorial Day Weekend with beautiful weather and me in need of a nice long bike ride as part of my training for the upcoming triathlon.  What to do but force the entire family to spend the day together biking one of the many trails in the cities.  I targeted 20 miles as a nice length ride.  John was on board with me and we discussed many potential routes before deciding on one we did a couple years ago from our church into Excelsior and back.  Isabelle is always excited by any activity we do as a family.  She just loves action.  However, the teenager doesn't like to ride bikes.  At least that is what he told us about every 10 minutes while we were getting ready.  He also tried ignoring us in hopes that we would just leave him.  He tried not getting ready in hopes we would leave him.  No such luck.  That boy was coming no matter what.  I told John that by the time we were 2 miles down the trail he would be speaking to us.  It is the exercise.  It clears your brain and relaxes you.  Plus we chose the trail we did because it was very wooded and he loves nature.

So we loaded up the van with 3 bikes, a trail-behind, an enthusiastic 5 year old and a sulking 15 year old and we were off.
Loaded car
Unloading the bikes.
Why are you making me do this???
I told him to look really miserable for me.  Ha ha, I got a smile even before we hit the trail.
Of course I didn't have to tell her to look like she was having fun.

Assembling the bikes.  That is mine.

Then we hit the trails. 

It only looked something like this, not actually like this since I was so busy leading the family on a power ride down the trail that I never thought to stop and take pictures of any of us on the bikes.  But John was pulling Isabelle in this same set up from 2006 when we did the MS150.  Of course Isabelle is about 20+ pounds heavier and I had about 5-10 pounds of food in the back but otherwise it was like that.

About 2 miles down the trail we rode by a woman who was really into her power walk.  Moments after we get by her Jake rides up to us and says, "it's all in the arms."  Ha ha.  And there you have it, he rallied.  A mom knows.  Further conversations about life followed as we enjoyed our idyllic family ride.

When we arrived in Excelsior John's bike computer said it was 9.5 miles.  Perfect for my 20 mile goal.  We sat by the lake and enjoyed a lovely picnic lunch.  Also part of my idyllic family interaction.
Now he is just faking.  Although he is still insisting he doesn't want to be here I know he is enjoying it.
John grabbed the camera from me so I couldn't be out of all the pictures.  I had no idea my legs were so pasty.  Will definitely be working on that this next week in Atlanta.

And John caught Isabelle and I dipping our toes in the water.  It is still quite cold.  However, Isabelle would have gone for a swim if she had been in her suit.  She loved every minute of it.
Official proof that he rallied.  Don't let him fool you into thinking he didn't enjoy this experience.

We got back on our bikes for the ride back.  It was a great ride.  I noted that John, with the "50 pound anchor inside a parachute" behind his bike seemed a little more tired than the rest of us.  I think we will be combing Craig's List the rest of the summer for a good deal on a trail behind bike for Isabelle.  It is time for her to start helping out a little.


  1. Love, love, love it. Family memories! My boy is still in there!!

  2. very great! and yes, you need some GA sun!!!