Do you have one of these?
It is genius. Simple. Pure. GENIUS! Just sit on it, wiggle the steering wheel, and off you go. What’s not to love?
Hope and Charlie still lack the coordination to pedal a bicycle, and truthfully, neither feel really secure being up on a tiny seat. I’ve tried it all, especially with Hope. From attaching her feet to the pedals with some stretchy bands and securing a long towel up under both of her arms (me holding on tight from behind to hold her up)….to sitting on the bike’s tiny seat, her in my lap, pedaling both of us around with my knees clear up to my chin. Now that was a sight to see, especially when she leapt out of my arms and off the bike right as we hit decent speed, knocking me flat on my back. Somehow I managed to hold onto her long enough so that she (sort of) landed on her feet. But as for me, there I laid, sprawled out on the ground, wondering if I’d broken anything. Believing I’d probably broken everything. Did the little cupcake come and help me up? Nope. She came over and sat on me. Plopped right down on my chest….and we have never tried that approach again.
So many times, I have pulled out that pink Hello Kitty bike and asked: “Hopey, don’t you want to ride and feel the wind blowing through your hair?” But she offers no response. Staring at me with those big old eyes, she shows no sign of being tempted whatsoever. For a moment I pause to consider that she could be emotionally traumatized from the memories of having her feet “tied” down to the bike with those stretchy bands and the image of seeing her mom rolling around, howling in pain after being knocked backwards off the bike. But I push those thoughts out of my head like any determined southern female would and continue.
“There is nothing quite like it,” I coax, using my most friendly convincing voice….still silently hoping she’s forgotten all of my prior crazy tactics. But still, no response. Only a set of pursed lips and those mocking eyes.
One last go at it, I bend over the bike, grasping those pearly white handle bars that hold long shiny silver tassels. ‘Vroom….Vroom!” I shout, “Just you, your bike, and the road.”
The sad story always ends the same. The bike is left behind in her dust as it’s would be rider runs off to play, not giving it another thought. Lucky for my kiddos, however, I am not one to give up that easy.
As a young girl, I rode my bike constantly. On some days I was a mom, riding my bike to the ‘grocery store’ (a neighbor’s mailbox)….while other days I was a female race car driver, flying down the street at what I considered to be highly dangerous speeds….each day tweaked my imagination and offered a new adventure. All because of my Schwinn wheels. Do you have those memories? Oh, how I want that experience for Hope and Charlie, whether they want it or not.
(Que the hallelujah chorus)
It may not be a typical bike, but get a load of this:
Yes, that is Charlie, riding with his big sister, Lydia, at a lightning pace through our house. And Hopey rides the thing too. It’s a first step, and I like it! A lot! Every day, I can’t help but grin as Lydia whisks about the house with my little ragamuffins. We now have two Wiggle Ride On Toys, so sometimes I jump on one and join in the fun too, racing Lydia and Charlie through the house, re-living my own youth. Once you get the hang of it, those scooters can fly. Caleb weighs 190 lbs. (well over the suggested weight limit) and has been riding one since he’s been home for his college break. You can imagine how Hope and Charlie think it’s made of the coolest stuff….a 6 and a 9 year old riding the same toy as their big brother.
I purchased ours from Learning Express Toys, and they were already assembled. I’ve read comments online that say putting them together is not easy, so if you are considering one, you might want to pay a little extra to make sure it is put together correctly. We haven’t had a single issue with ours, and I think that might be because someone who knew what they were doing (i.e. NOT ME) assembled them.
Have you had success teaching your special one to ride a bike? If so, what worked for you?