Wednesday, May 14, 2008

My Newfound Celebrity Status

I am apparently a local celebrity these days. I took the kids to the Pine Tree Festival last weekend on school day (since Derek's graduation was on Saturday) and got stopped everywhere. And it's not just there.... Everywhere I go these days I hear "aw.... looks there's babies in there!" or people stop me to ask me where to get a trailer, how to hook one up, if it's safe, how old kids need to be to ride in one.... It happens every time I go out.

Only time will tell if I have started a trend or not. I hope that I start seeing other moms around town with their trailers happily pulling their kids. The way that gas is going I'm sure that more people will be looking at leaving their huge pick up trucks (with Hemi's) at home and go for smaller more economical transportation but I'm hoping that I can get more people using human power to get around. Who knows maybe I can make a difference in this car crazed status crazy town.

So far, one of our friends from church has picked himself up a good bike and has been cycling around town (they live in the next town over). They're looking at getting a bike for the wife soon too. One of my sisters in law has apparently hooked her trailer back up too! Another lady from church is considering cycling on her commute she lives pretty far out and is looking at getting a bike from the pawn shop though so I'm not sure if that will last. The bikes that we get in pawn shops here are usually WalMart specials that have already been run into the ground.

Speaking of WalMart.... I braved WalMart on the bike last week! I had to chain the bike and trailer to a signpost but it WAS still there when I got back. I did like a silly girl leave my reflective ankle strap ON the cart and I had to hang out for 1/2 hour for the cart to come back through to get it back. I would have considered going on without it but.... I was wearing really wide jeans. At any rate, I ran into one of the cyclists I met at the Pine Tree Breeze there. We talked shop for a few minutes and he seemed truly interested in 1W2W. Another guy checked out my trailer and declared that one could actually do the shopping with it. Now if only I had someplace to put both kids and groceries I'd be set.... I have been seeing another bike parked up at the evil empire on my weekly run lately (I know I know they're evil and as soon as we're not living off of student loan money I will shop at Harveys for everything but Nutella - which they refuse to carry). I think that it belongs to an employee because it's there on a semi regular schedule and is always there for really long periods of time... AND it has no rack or basket, which tells me that someone isn't getting groceries.

I also took the kids to the park where I answered a couple of questions about the trailer. For the first time I didn't get tired getting to and from the park - yippee!

As for the actual Pine Tree Festival it was a three and a half mile ride out but I made it. The few hills in our little town happen to be between here and there one of which stopped me for a minute or two because I just couldn't make it up. It's been a while since that's happened to me but I stopped, drank some water, caught my breath and I DID NOT walk the bike up. I got back on and pedaled like there was no tomorrow! I made it there and made it back no problems! Yea me! I got to "drive" right into the festival and just secured the bike and removed the trailer to use it as a stroller for the rest of the day. I have to say that even though we didn't get to see most of the festival because we came during set up it was a lot of fun. There's a playground on the grounds and we got to see part of the lumberjack show. BTW - lumberjack shows ROCK! We also got to see the forestry service helicopter demonstrate a water drop over the forest which was a hit with the kids.

One of the ladies who stopped me at the festival has an 18 month old and is seriously looking into a trailer for cycling with her older kids. So, I ran her through the basics. She was really concerned with the legality of bike trailers. I had to try to not stare at her blankly... legality? Of course it's legal. Gosh I'd have been picked up long ago.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Impromtu Picnics ROCK!

We woke up today in a funk. I had gone over to our exceptionally apologetic neighbors last night at like 1 and told them to keep it down. This was after an unusually late night for us heading out to Savannah to pick up MaLew at the train station. So... I was a little too rude to our neighbor in my opinion and felt the need to go smooth things over. I decided that store bought cookies were probably the best way to go as home baked goodies from your crazy neighbor who yelled at you in the middle of the night might be a little sketchy. Thus, I gathered the kids and the hubby (who hasn't ridden in a couple of days) and shuffled everyone into the trailer or onto a bike and forced them all out to the grocery store.

After our exceedingly late night and grumpy morning you can only imagine that by the time I got everyone dressed moving, out the door, and down the street that it was about noon. Finding ourselves out at lunchtime and not wanting to eat another meal "out" we grabbed some lunch at the grocery store along with the "cookies of shame" and set off to have a picnic. The kids had a great time and everyone cheered up. So, all in all that worked out well for us.

Things are smoothed over with the neighbors. I'm just a little shocked because they're older than us. Like, visibly older than us. I was really expecting college kids but NOOOOOO, not college kids at all. All in all they seem nice though, hopefully their next party will be inside after midnight.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Bike Related Crafting

So, I've made a couple of things bike related. I made a pair of cycling gloves for me and another for my hubby. I've also started making my own shirts because shorter shirts really do seem to be popular right now and I'm having a very hard time finding shirts that look cool and cover my lower back. So... I took some measurements and I've made a couple of shirts (totally without a pattern). I've also copied my favorite T-shirt but unfortunately I have to line the resulting shirt as I didn't realize that the fabric was quite that sheer.

I also saw a really cool felted wool handle bar bag on Ravelry (an online knit/crochet community that's kind of like facebook). I'm in love with it. I am totally making one with a couple of slight variations so that I can take it off of my bike and use it as a handbag as well.
Here's the blog for the cool lady who made the original:

I've also found a pattern for knitting panniers which I'm thinking that I may sew out of a sturdy fabric rather than knitting. A second set of panniers in the family would be nice because right now hubby and I are sharing which means that there's one pannier for each of us and let me just tell you, if you put a 2 liter bottle on one side of your bike and nothing on the other certain places get sore!