The kids have a running list of which parent does which stuff.
I am not the camping parent.
But I am the art project parent.
I am not the bike ride parent.
But I am the cupcake parent.
I am not the window shopping at the mall parent.
But I am the road trip parent.
It makes for a balanced, dysfunctional relationship, if you know what I mean.
Things I don’t do, The Ex does. And vice versa.
Which is true of most families.
The bike ride thing? I have no problem going for a bike ride. It’s the loading of the bikes into the truck (since our neighborhood has too many hills for a decent bike ride for the kids). Then the dog. And the pushing of little bikes when little legs get tired. And the whining that starts about 23.5 minutes later.
But every now and then, I’ll throw the kids a curve ball, and do the unexpected.
A few of the paths that I run/walk are perfect for the kids to ride, so in an effort to combine my work-outs with fun for them, we loaded up the bikes and hit the road before dinner the other night.
I got some exercise in, and although those bikes are a pain to shove into the car, they were happy. Santa? Those bike rack things to go on the back of the car? Please and thank you.
After I did two loops of the trail, we stopped alongside the river for a few minutes. I encouraged the kids to go in, to walk along the rocks from one side to the other. They didn’t immediately embrace the idea.
And then I couldn’t drag them out.
It brought back a lot of fond memories of when I was a little older than them. There is a little water area a few blocks’ from my parents house. Much like the one pictured above. My friend, Lauren, and I would go down there any chance we could. Walking from one end to the other. It stretched just a little bit of distance, from the town library to the community pool, where there was a large sewer pipe/drain thing. That we climbed in. We’d sit for hours, until the sunlight fell, talking about boys, and teachers, and parents.
We’d balance on the rocks, going from one side to the other, moving them to help us get across the water in more water-logged areas.
Use sticks to dig around for sea life.
And get our feet so wet we’d be wringing out our socks on the way home. Good times.
And honest, old-fashioned fun that doesn’t include technology.
It’s my favorite.
And I love that the kids got to make some of their own similar memories like that too.
“Mom, my feet smell like dead fish,” said Nick as we were getting in the car, and he was beaming from ear to ear.
And he wasn’t even the one who kept falling in.
All the photos in tonight’s post are from Instagram. You can follow me here.