The new house is (happily) much closer to school. Close enough, in fact, that if we leave enough time, we can ride our bikes. Elie and Isaac are pros at riding and were incredibly excited to get on their bikes and ride. I have a very nice bike trailer and Leila is happy as anything to ride in it for long periods of time, watching the world go by and everyone else do all the hard work. But poor Talia....she's been on the edge of riding, but we haven't had much time to take her out and practice. So, she had to sit in the bike trailer with Leila. It is spacious for one child, and designed to hold two, but not so spacious when a five year old and a three year old are crammed together.
She was fussy about riding in the trailer, but more fussy about practicing riding (now that we have a fabulous driveway area to practice in). She was scared, she wobbled, she made herself freak out and was on the verge of down right refusing to try to ride. I had gotten her on a couple of times for practice and they went really well, I could tell that she was sooooo very close to getting the hang of it and going. Yesterday, I announced that we were going to practice. "Can't I just ride a scooter?" she said. Uhhhh, nope kiddo, not gonna cut it.
Talia got on and I gave her loads of encouragement. I held the bike steady and ran with her, lightly holding on, but it soon became apparent that I needed to just let go and let her feel the balance. So I held the bike, she started pedaling and I let go. Just like that, she was riding by herself. A few more back and forths where I ran behind her, when she stopped and said "I know you weren't holding on to me!" She was so proud and it was so amazing to see it just.click.
I stopped running with her and she started experimenting with turning and braking. Then she said, "Okay, I'm going to figure out how to start myself." (I was shocked. This is something that both Elie and Isaac took an additional amount of time to get figured out. For quite a while, with both of them, we would have to hold the bike steady while they got started pedaling and then we would let go.) And she stood in the driveway and worked on it and worked on it and worked. She even managed to start herself a handful of times.
Talia was so incredibly proud. She was glowing. I am completely amazed by the whole situation. She just, blink, figured it out. When did my TW get to be *so* big?? I know she'll be riding to school in the fall, the bike trailer will be lighter, but my heart will be fuller seeing her ride on her own.