Monday, September 10, 2012

Mermaid City

Thank you for reading Petals and Moss, but I'm moving on from this space and pleased to introduce my new blog: Mermaid City.

"... I have created this blog as a promise to myself: I will work on . . . "Art" . . . any creative activity that feels completely indulgent, therefore inspiring and not a chore."

Monday, March 19, 2012

Family Biking

Our preschool commute: that's FOUR on one bike!  Okay it's all downhill and I'm only using the brakes, but it looks so serious.  Here's my story and what I've learned about biking with babies.
   I stared biking with my daughter when she was 20 months old using an iBert seat in the front.  I loved our ability to chat intimately while riding together.  We lived on a steep hill so I didn't have to go far to get a work out.  Soon, I got braver and braver and was comfortable travelling across town.  It was becoming addictive; the exercise + running errands + bonding with my child combination. 

  I started in the summer by buying a cheap used bike from Recycled Cycles.  I wondered how long into the autumn I would ride.  We found ourselves biking at night to see Christmas lights!  We rode year round and continue to do so.  It was the same with my second pregnancy, I wondered how far into it I could ride.  I was still heaving my big belly over that bike at 9 months. Then once I had my infant I wanted to know how soon I could get back on with him too.  I waited until he was 7 months old.  He still wasn't able to hold his head up well and I knew a helmet would put too much weight on his head and neck.  I was inspired by reading Kent's Bike Blog on How to Transport and Infant by Bike.  Although the Chariot company does not reccomend it, we chose to strap the infant carseat into the trailer.  I like the idea of the carseat being "a huge, full-body helmet."  Our double chariot trailer would act like a roll-cage that completely surrounded baby.  This worked well until he was about 10 months and able to sit upright in the iBert wearing his nut case helmet (which uses a magnetic buckle that makes getting it on SO much easier!) 

  So here we are currently using the double chariot for my five year old and a friend with baby in the front.  Baby also likes to sit with sister in the back during nap time too.  Naps can be a bit of a problem in the iBert.  They often fell asleep in a forward fold over my handle bars.  Not the easiest for balancing the bike and looks really weird to drivers! You'll find everything you need to know here about front child bike seats, some with wind shields.  If you have concerns about the safety of biking with your kiddos, check out this knowledgable Mama.
  far as gear goes, I'm a minimalist but I do require a few things to make winter biking pleasant for my babies:
  • warm lined booties
  • wool hood for babies head and neck
  • warm suit with fold-over mittens (nothing that detaches or can get lost)
  • aforementioned nut case helmet with awesome buckle
Now I'm trying to decide what's in our future.  I've seen a few of these lately, so versatile!
However, I'd always thought I'd upgrade to an xtra cycle.  Decisions, decisions.
Post any inspiring stories or links about riding with kids in the comments!

I'll leave you with the words of my inspiring and sassy riding Mama friend Madi,
"I bike because I'm too lazy to find parking!"

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

For the Love of Burlap

Oh burlap how I have been longing to sew you up into buckets with your polk-a-dot lining.  Finally, these
Nesting Burlap Buckets are filled with potatoes, onions and cans.  How cool that all the burlap scraps were compostable.  I challenged myself to knit the jute yarn taken from the seems into a veggie scrubber like some industrious crafty mama.  I'd always been curious what to do with the burlap bag I bought at the farmer's market and this is it!