If You Give a Girl a Bike

If your four year old asks to go on a bike ride, you’ll head to the trail.

If you head to the trail, you should probably pack some water.

If you pack some water, she’ll want to stop and drink it.

If she stops to drink it once, she’ll want to stop to drink it again.

If she stops to drink it every thirty seconds, Mommy will start to get a little aggravated.

If Mommy gets a little aggravated, she will take a deep breath and try to think of something.

If she takes a deep breath, she’ll decide to challenge the girl to ride for one whole minute without stopping.

If she rides for one whole minute, Mommy will challenge her to do two.

If she does two, she will catch on and not want to play that game anymore.

If she doesn’t want to play anymore, Mommy has to think of something new.

If Mommy thinks of something new, she’ll let the girl take a picture after every three minutes.

If she takes a picture every three minutes, there won’t be a whole lot of new material.

If there isn’t a whole lot of new material, Mommy will have to to come up with something motivating AGAIN.

If Mommy really thinks, she’ll decide to tell a story.

If she tells a story, it will most definitely be the mouse and cookie kind because that’s the only thing she can make up on the spot.

If she tells a mouse and cookie kind of story, the girl will ride for six whole minutes without stopping.

If she rides for six whole minutes without stopping, she’ll remember how much fun bike rides can be.

And tomorrow if she remembers how much fun bike rides can be, she’ll ask you to take her on another bike ride.

Insufficient Memory

Yesterday while painting pottery with some dear friends, I got the dreaded “insufficient memory” message on my camera.  I wasn’t sure where on the computer Jay wanted to dump the contents of the memory card, so I didn’t try to conquer this task on my own.  This meant that today we ventured out camera-less.  If I had carried my camera, here are the snapshots I would have shared…

Chica riding her new bike on the trail for the first time—The contrast in this picture is especially striking.  There’s girly Chica in her pink shirt and pink Dora helmet sitting on top of her shiny, bright red boy bike.  We got the bike last night on a spontaneous trip to Wal-mart after we determined that her other bike was just too small.  When they didn’t have a girl bike in her size, we convinced her that the red made her look fast.  We were secretly thankful that this means Bubba automatically has a hand-me-down he can use.

There would be lots of good shots from our ride, but two stand out.  One would be her turning around with her “tell me I’m doing great” smile when she finally has it figured out.  Just like her mama!  The other would actually be a video clip.  She had three spills after running over sticks along the trail.  After the third one she stands up, brushes herself off, and says, “Well, at least I didn’t get dead.”  Now there’s some optimism for you.

Bubba cradling the whisk and spatula—Today out of desperation we handed Bubba two new toys, the whisk and spatula.  They were so intriguing to him that we let him have them again in the car.  As usual, he fell asleep on the ride.  When we arrived, we found him clutching them both to his chest like a favorite stuffed animal.  A chef in the making, maybe?  Jay decided this would look a little strange while running errands in the store, so he pried them out of his hands before leaving the car.

Bubba with the trashcan on his head—Tonight I was helping MIL create some Pinterest inspired wall art for her office.  While Chica watched Sprout, Bubba was busy dumping every toy possible into the floor.  Next thing I know, Bubba has flipped a whicker trashcan over onto his head.  It’s covering his whole body, with trash spread out around him.  The worst part was that Jay and I just sat their laughing.  It was that kind of laugh that makes you cry and afraid you might pee yourself if you move.  Thankfully MIL rescued him.  He wasn’t quite sure whether to laugh or to cry when it was all over.

Chica flipping me the bird—Just a few minutes after the trashcan episode, Chica says, “Look mom, I need a band-aid.  I have blood.”  I look up and see her nicked middle finger, plain as day, about two inches from my face.  I hold it together for about 1.5 seconds, and then I just let out yet another careful-don’t-pee -yourself laugh.  “Mom, why you are laughing?”

Some days I wish our brains worked like a memory card.  When our brains have their fill of beautiful, funny, and even mundane memories, we should be able to dump them somewhere to retrieve later.  Instead it feels like my brain just chucks those memories left and right.  The ones I do keep seem to get more and more out of focus as time passes.  Always insufficient memory.  Even more reason, I guess, to keep writing.  Here’s to hoping I find this 50 years from now and get another good laugh from today’s photos that should have been.