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Old 10-01-11, 04:12 PM   #1
Suburban
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Surburban Family

Hi! I'm a stay-at-home mother to three kids, aged 7, 5 and 2.5yo. The 7yo hasn't been brave enough to take off her training wheels, but my 5yo is steady on his bike. My 2yo doesn't understand that he has to turn the pedals.

My husband started taking the train to work and we got rid of the second car. The Family car isn't getting much use because most things are in walking distance of our house. We're thinking of getting rid of it. We're basically using it once a week, but we don't think we need it. Husband works downtown and we can use zip cars for places too far away. There's excellent transit and a taxi would work for late at night with tired children. Or for seriously bad weather. If we could get the lot of us on bikes, it would help. Traffic is slow in our 60's suburb, no thru traffic. If we venture a little further, there are sidewalks lacking pedestrian traffic.

Only real question is, what do we want to buy. I liked the cargo bikes I've seen online. I haven't owned a bike since I was in my early teens. I had a speed bike I used to take long distance with my father. I'm not in horrible shape, but not doing enough. We're in a northern city, so if we did something like , I would want it enclosed to keep the 2yo warm. I'm a little put off that they stand out a lot. I'd rather avoid attention, but if it's the most practical solution, I'll go with it. I don't like the child carrier trailers because they're hard for cars to see back there. But I liked the sidecar chariot as a better solution. I like the tag alongs, not sure it that will start fights between the 5yo and 7yo.

Anyway, I'm looking on here to see if there are other families using bikes for more utilitarian reasons. Maybe a little advice.
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Old 10-01-11, 04:18 PM   #2
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Welcome to Bike Forums.

Post in The Living Car Free and The Recreation & Family Forums for much help.
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Old 10-01-11, 05:25 PM   #3
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Thanks, I'll give it a try.
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Old 10-01-11, 06:43 PM   #4
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Can I make a suggestion for the kiddos? I have heard nothing but excellent reviews about these: http://www.leelikesbikes.com/strider...-running-bikes
Obviously it won't be great for getting the kids to the store with you, but it may be something to consider to help the 2 year old get comfortable on a bike, and removing the crankset on the 7 year old's bike to set up something like this may give her the confidence to ride on two wheels. Basically the idea is that kids start out just sitting on the saddle and toddling from side to side, but move up to the point where they push off and ride a bit on two wheels with their feet off the ground before pushing off again.
So they start off like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mWm0n_24uEE
And progress to this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-1O80xTs0Jg
(Well alright, probably not like the second one, but you get the idea )
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Old 10-01-11, 07:16 PM   #5
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That is very cute! I think I'll put the balance bike down as a christmas present. Not sure about the 7yo though. We're talking to her about removing the training wheel on one side to start with. We've already lifted them a little.
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Old 10-01-11, 07:38 PM   #6
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Welcome aboard Mrs. Suburban, there are some folks on the board
that are car-free and should be able to give you plenty of advice.


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Old 10-01-11, 07:48 PM   #7
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I like the bakfiets. A lot of positives and negatives to weigh that route. Anyone try to winterize one? I wouldn't bother in the snow, but well below freezing and dealing with windchill factors.
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