Sunday, April 13, 2014

#30 Days of Biking: DO IT!

Salmoning on the sidewalk 5th Ave.
I did not sign up for the monthly 30 days of biking challenge just because you know, close to due date April 30th or Rosh Chodesh Iyar. So close, yet so far away! Also, to get a full 30 days I would need to bike after Shabbos and frankly I am not in the mood to go out at night. Without even trying I have managed to bike every day of April except for Shabbos so that's pretty good, my own version of 30 minus Shabbos days of biking.

Depending on how I have felt I have cut down some of my mileage and combined bike with train/bike. On Friday I combine my errands with bus and got to experience the joy of jerks on the bus. I hate smells and suddenly the bus smelled like smoke. I look back and three jerks sprawled across the back were smoking. Does this sound like a familiar scenario? Well, it also happened on the train. A group of jerks smoking on the light rail and a law student gets punched out for trying to defend a family with kids. I grabbed my daughter, made my way to the front of the bus and told the driver about the jerks. Well, this resulted in the driver kicking them off the bus but not before they threatened me and I threatened them with the POLICE. My daughter was terrified. One of the guys looked like he was making his way to the front of the bus and in one hand I had my phone dialing 9-1...and the other hand was pulling out a pair of scissors I had in my backpack for a craft project. Let me just say, these are really sharp scissors. Behind me was my daughter. Before I hit the last 1 the 3 A-holes got off the bus. Sadly, my kid was scared and nothing is worse than being called the "C" and "B" word. The "B" word doesn't bother me but What the Fuzzy! Calling me the "C" word just shows the level of respect of these men have for women.

The Broadway cycle track. Stuff we biked on.
I am convinced they thought they thought they were manly, not siting next to each other, sexually harassing a women who had to change seats and then threatening a pregnant lady with a kid. This was an isolated incident and yes, it makes me think twice about taking the bus but why do I have to be scared. I think what really POed me was the fact that nobody on the bus helped us except the driver. People just looked stupefied. So, I felt like a victim even though nothing happened to us and we were almost alone. Also, I had sharp scissors, please don't mess with me and my craft scissors. So, just to make my daughter feel better I think we will be cutting back on the bus portion and I will be biking more and combining it better with Light Rail or less weirdo bus routes. Although, the 9 has more professional and student riders than any of the other routes. Yes, this happened on the 9.

As you can see we saw some interesting sights. My photographer was kinda busy with helping me prepare for Passover so that means that we didn't take many pictures of our riding around looking kind wacko with the stuff we bought for our very short holiday, more on that to come! Still pregnant and biking, I am pretty surprised I have managed this.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Biking 9 Months Pregnant

The nesting has begun. I went up to shul to help my husband.
This also meant the bike dragged me up the hill with this load.
So, I made it month 9 and am still biking. Remember our trip to the birthing center and the related pain afterwards. So, After that point it seemed as if the baby has decided to slowly descend. I can feel it in the way I breath and the positioning of my stomach. It also means I can can sorta eat. While this is nice it also mean that I started to get swollen feet. Actually I blame myself. On Monday I stayed with my daughter at school and did some volunteer hours in the library. I guess I picked the wrong position to sit and gave myself those tamale feet. I did the only sensible thing and searched on YouTube for swollen pregnancy feet and saw some really swollen feet, worse than mine. That is what YouTube is for, to make you feel much better about your own human condition, hahaha.

I am also getting more tired. Pesach is two weeks away and we have cleaned half the house and have just the downstairs area to do. It shouldn't take a long time to get done but it will be work I am not really excited about. On WAY better news I bought our handmade shmura matza without drama or rain. It seems that every year I buy them something happens or worse, it rains when I buying them. I always feel if we have our matzah we are good. I mean, what else might run out? I don't like last minute.

On Tuesday my life took a turn of events. My morning begins with saying ModeAni, washing negel vasser and then a trip to the facilities. Well, from that trip I noticed something interesting, my mucus plug came out. Why is related to biking? Well, not too long ago this whole discussion of plugs and biking was on Family Biking page for us Seattle Biking Families. Several women expressed that they were told not to bike if they lost the plug. All I could think was how sad I was not to be able to bike. I called the doctor and talked to the triage nurse and she approved my biking without the plug. HORRAY!! Like always, their is a concern of falling or a car hitting me, which could happen regardless if I am on the bike or not. The other day I almost slipped down our stairs because I insisted on cleaning the wall. They were dirty and it was annoying me.
I love it when cars block the crosswalk and don't indicate where they are going!
So, here I am 9 months, biked yesterday and a sitting duck for this baby to make their way in the world. I tried hard to take a picture of us biking home from my OBGYN appointment but the weight of a kid, beer and groceries was a little more than I bargained for. I needed to hands on the bike. Instead you get the lady who decided to block the crosswalk. I love those people.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Biking to the Birthing Center

Last Sunday the whole family was suppose to bike to the birthing center (in reality it is the hospital with a birthing center) so we can all take a look and ask questions. I understood that kids under 10 were not allowed but didn't realize until a very late email that my kid would not be allowed on the tour. The email had in big letters, NO CHILDREN ALLOWED. Those are ugly words I don't like but then again my kid is pretty much behaved. So, I scrambled last minute to find a babysitter or at least a responsible person to come sit in my house and make sure my kid is safe and the house doesn't go anywhere. I would have asked the neighbors girls but the family had been going through some virus and my kid was afraid that the older girls might unknowingly have whatever the younger kids had. So, I called another girl to come and she brought our daughter's BFF which was easy enough because it was her sister. Mr. Peyos and I left the house without our kid. So it was like a date but not a date. I hate going anywhere without our kid. It is something I am not exactly used to.

This is us taking a break from biking because I was thirsty and I had to go to the bathroom but we were almost there so I wasn't worried. I was going to make it. My maternity belt was holding it all in. You can see a hint of Mr. Peyos in the picture. He put on his casual shoes.

Up and over through Judkins Park we go, lalalalala........

After biking north on 20th Ave. I like to turn on Columbia. I know you have to go uphill but I have that BionX right! I forgot I was riding with someone unassisted and on a Dutch bike, opps!
 More of me going uphill on Columbia. Why did I pick this street? You will see in a second.

 TADA! Can you see where I am headed. Right towards Swedish! Does it look flat. It does but their is a hill beyond those beautiful flowers at Seattle University.

We arrived and parked our bikes at these really nice bike racks. Since it was Sunday not many people were parked here. The tour was interesting. We had several other couples on the tour with us. We were apparently the only parents going through a second pregnancy. All the other mommies were 1st time and didn't have many questions to ask. We had some urgent questions. For example, does the facility have an alarm on the baby? Yup, we asked this. Turns out my husband took our daughter into the hallway corridor during her stay at birth and made all the alarms go off and resulted in security and the nurses yelling at him. We had no idea so this time we asked because that was enough trauma. The best part was at some point the nurse asked all the preggy ladies to sit down. What happened next some dumb husband sat in the most comfy chair instead of offering it to his partner. Idiot! All the other non-pregnant people stood.
As soon as we left the birthing center Apple Pie decided to wedge it's body on the left side of my body into my ribs. It hurt SO bad. I even asked Mr. Peyos to please please push the baby over. So, I took a few deep breaths and he pushed on the baby but that kid is related to us and is stubborn. I had to unstrap the maternity belt just for relief. For a second I thought I was having some pretty intense Braxton Hicks but it was just baby torturing me. We biking down the hill on a street parallel to Madison and ended up here. Look, no cars! It is Sunday, nobody goes anywhere on Sunday except this crazy lady on a bike. So, at least we got to bike with zero rain and it made for an enjoyable but painful bike ride home. Now that I am in the final countdown of month 9 we will see if I get to those 1000 miles I was hoping to accomplish before this baby debuts.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Happy Spring 2014

Thursday marked the beginning of spring. It also meant another appointment for me at my OBGYN. I am not so used to biking uphill to the appointment with my kid but because Mr. Peyos has a job he has to go to work. I was left with no choice than to take my kid with me. She has gone to several appointments and find them slightly boring. She likes it when the doctor hear the heartbeat but other than that the appointment is boring. Apparently the doctor has heard about our daughters "digestive issues" and talked her about it. That was nice.

It was a really gorgeous day. You could have not asked for a better 1st day of spring. On the way home from my way boring appointment I asked the official photographer to take pictures and here are her pictures:

This is us biking through Chinatown which wasn't so bad because of the time of day but people don't adhere to stop signs. Pedestrians are forced to run from corner to corner but my kid just took a picture of this colorful store.

On our way to the appointment we encountered screaming from under the highway but they moved a few blocks over and didn't see them but we did smell the grossness of this area.

I asked if I could bike over the Jose Rizal Bridge and didn't hear objections so I made my way across.

More of Jose. That bridge is green.
Here we are waiting to cross the street so we can make our way on the path to glide over Rainier Ave.
 Here we are once we crossed the street on a dedicated shared path. It was so beautiful.

 Making our way across Rainier Ave. This picture makes me look like we are going fast. Oh yeah!

 On the other side a freakish view of the 1-90 highway. It is weird to bike parallel to speeding cars.
 That is Rainier Ave. Hello down there!
 Weeds or food, depending on your take. OR beautiful flowers!

Finally, our kid took a picture of her teeth. I wonder if her dentist would like this photo? As you can see, it was a beautiful beginning to spring. Little did we realize that soon after the rain would spit down on us the following days. Oh well, but at least it's not snowing right!

Friday, March 21, 2014


I tired to complete the Errandonne Challenge but this year has been so irregular. While I would love to blog about some issues regarding my irregular year I don't know if they have anything to do with biking. I suppose you might be seeing more of my kid in these blog post because she has taken on the official task of being the blogs photographer.

Back to the Errandonne challenge. I have to admit. I tried. I had some days where I took pictures and then suddenly my phone was having pictures taking any pictures. I hate when something doesn't work. The few pictures I did salvage from my challenge.

This was a cool tin bicycle repair kit found on our way home. We were shopping for a birthday party my kid never made it to because she ended up getting sick. Let's not even count the times she has been sick this year. UGHHH!

This is the 2nd Ave Death Trap, I meant bike lane. It was occupied by buses. I am glad that that lane comes in handy for something other than a highway to run over people on bikes. YEAH for Seattle!!

This is school pick-up. Oh, one of the few weeks where our kid made it to school all week without anxiety barfing, that's a hint to what has been wrong with her. Humm, could it be that she had less time with a certain teacher? I am going to say yes!! That day was glorious and so was this picture, no filter, just rays of lovely sunshine coming down on my bike. We even forgot about homework packets just because it was the sun! I love sun!

I stopped and had a drink at a coffee place MANY times! Sorry about the smootz on the camera.

On the Purim spirit days I made my kid a The Clash t-shirt since it was Clash day! HAHAHAH! Again, she had the most glorious days during spirit week.

 I stood on the corner of Rainier and Morgan trying to figure out what SDOT was planning to do with the road here. See the white on the road? I saw two guys standing on the corner the other day and wonder if they plan to make the road easier to get across.
 This is a notorious place where pedestrians are ignored. Isn't that nice!

 I went to BikeWorks in hopes of finding some hi-viz banana gear for the back of my bike. Apparently they were in the middle of filming or close to filming.
 The guy is scratching his head. Look at the bikes for little kids. Go buy one!

 My favorite road of pot holes. That one is a looker and could swallow my tire and tip me over!

 On one of the days my kids was sick we managed to go to an art studio and paint pottery. This complex sports a good bike rack but I was nervous because it is right on Rainier Ave. From inside I got to witness people slowly lurk around my bike.
 I found a route to the birthing center. Hello WAY over there!

Last but not least I was slightly stunned when I made a trip to Blick on Broadway to pick up painting supplies for that mushroom project and a United States Post office truck rolled past me as me I locked the bike next to Jimmy. I Tweeted this and it got reTwittered but I wonder if SDOT was paying attention so it might be time to Get Jessie. It is stupid when people in cars do this but a US Mail Truck, you have to be kidding! So, there were the task I completed. I might have forgotten a few because I didn't take a picture. Madi was way more organized when it came to this. So, catch up on how she managed her task.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Soggy Purim...WHY??

At lot of people don't know this but Purim is not my most favorite Jewish holiday. Why??? Oh, but this is not a holiday for kids. It is a slew of mitzvahs, all starting with MEM that we adults  over bar/bat mitzvah must do within a certain time frame. I am a planner but this is one those where you are RUSH RUSH RUSH.. You can't start anything early. It is like a marathon. So, their are four mitzvahs I needed to complete starting right after Shabbos. As much as I don't want to walk anywhere I had to walk up on Shabbos to hear Parshas Zachor. We came home and ate lunch at a friends house. Lunch was nice because our friends also invited the famous Garden Renegade. I like her family. After watching them all sooth a baby I am now going to call them, the Baby Whisper Family. Any one of them could get a fussy baby calm in no time flat. I will have to borrow one of those kids when my baby comes along. Lunch was meaty and yummy. The menu even included meatloaf, something our kid has wanted to try for along time. So, Shabbos was nice and I even let the newborn take a nap on my pregnant belly or as I imagine, new friend, hahaha. I wonder how those two babies will get along once mine comes along?

Then we came home so I could take a sitting up nap, not a hard task for me. I slept for about an hour and then my kid got me up 1/2 hour before Shabbos was over so I could wake up completely. As soon as Shabbos was over my kid got her costume on and I made sure I had a skirt on, yes I forget because my leggings are so cozy. We walked up and watched Mr. Peyos take charge of the set-up as his Shamos job. Actually everything was set up by the time we got there so all we did was sit. That was nice.

So, we heard the nighttime Megillah reading, including Apple Pie. It was so loud the baby just kicked at me the whole time and it was a painful hour but I endured. I bet next year I will have to hire someone to wait outside with the baby for me so I can hear it without protest crying. Here is a shot of us reading and following along. That moon of pink is my stomach. I know, it's a kid megillah, so what! The Hebrew font is big just the way I like it. Plus it has funny pictures that make me laugh.

After the shuls big Purim Spiel, yes we are the only ones in the Seward Park area that did this, we got home about midnight. I was too wired to sleep so I worked on the finishing touches of our Purim costume. My kid was Smurfette this year and I said I would make the Xtracycle Edgerunner into her house. My husband thought it was a little overboard but you do these things for fun right. I stayed up finishing and zipting. Actually Thursday we painted the shroom.

We let it dry and it turns out that paint is really chalk like and by touching it you get pink all over. I was cheap and just bought hot pink and white and then mixed shades to finish it up. So, Saturday night I dedicated myself to finishing up this project because when would I get a chance?
This is just one side and then I realized, how the heck is she going to get ON the bike with that in the way? So I pulled out the Hooptie, which I didn't realized was not extended fully out. The things you learn. You see I had to connect the top to the bottom and then color a window. Our daughter actually did a good job painting that thing.

All night it rained and I worried, ACK! This mushroom is going to melt and I am going to probably be alone on the bike because the Smurf won't want to ride in it. On Sunday the sky poured down and the only one who thought I wasn't crazy to bike in the rain was my daughter. She REALLY wanted to go out and make our deliveries after the morning megillah reading. Despite going to sleep at the insane time of midnight she woke up and we were off again to shul at 8:40am.

Here it is parked on a hill and I was waiting for my kid to make her delivery. We had originally planned to make small misloach manot for all the girls in her class but by morning somehow I had negotiated to only include a small group of girls, the ones closest to the house. So far nothing is melting. I made my own obligatory deliveries. I usually give out two and then the rest of the money that would he been otherwise spent goes to matanot l'evyonim. One of them included a 2lb giant chocolate bunny and Girl Scout cookies. Look, if you are going to fulfill this mitzvah then do it so that the person really enjoys what they are getting. I wonder how much of that bunny got eaten? Mr.Peyos gave out beer, chips and hummus to two people who really love that kind of manly stuff. 

Back home and this is how wet that cardboard got. Don't look at my lawn or mess, I haven't been able to garden since August. Yes, August! My lawn is overgrown and I don't care at this point. I left the bike out for a while but brought it in to dry. I thought we were going to bike after eating our seuda to visit other friends but instead got in our friends car for that one. So, I didn't even get to count a ride for my Errandonne challenge. I might not even finish that one, so sad.

Here is my view of the other meal we showed up to. That is not my plate but my kids plate. I am glad we ate at home because she never likes to eat out of the house. She is a real homebody when it comes to eating. This party had no bouncy house but the kids there didn't care because they were really entertained by the adults.  Like I said, Purim is not for kids, but for the adults. Mr. Peyos and friend played background on a very lively halachic debate and the kids thought that was hilarious, go figure. We left at some point and all the children, including mine sat at someone's house while my friend and I went to check out the funny man dancing  I missed witnessing last year. Well, it was interesting for 10 seconds. Maybe I will follow this up with a second post because I didn't include a picture of the Smurf on the bike. Ahh, but at least I didn't loose my wallet like last year and Mr. Peyos managed to keep all contents of his stomach IN his stomach this year! 

Thursday, March 13, 2014

8 Months Pregnant and STILL biking

Count the rings on my tummy!
Hey, lady! When are you going to give up this whole biking nonsense, get a car and just look spacey pregnant like everyone else? You could loose your balance! Actually, my problem is just plain grabbing something and then making other stuff fall. For example, when I shop at the most dangerous place on the planet I have to be really careful. Trader Joe's is a hazard zone. I have knocked over SO many displays since being pregnant I think they fear me when I walk through the door. I bet they broadcast, "It's the pregnant biking lady, quick, evasive maneuvers!" I didn't admit to this until the other day when we were sitting eating soup at the table and I told Mr. Peyos my saga of dumping a ton of tiny yogurts all over Trader Joe's floor. Did I take a picture? No but I felt bad and tried to get down on my pregnant knees to pick it up but gave up. Nobody got mad at me so it was okay in the end.

Still trying to take pictures while biking up a hill

How am I feeling? I will be honest, tired. I am tired and just want to sleep. If I could, I would sleep and sleep more. I am not particularly hungry just sleepy. One day I even fell asleep sitting in the chair downstairs. I like comfort and it is not the most comfortable place to sit and sleep.

I can still pedal with one foot
How am I able to still bike? I don't know but I can tell you that sitting and biking is way more comfortable. I say it is the easy way to get around. I get Braxton Hicks contractions while walking. On Shabbos my daughter's friend stopped by to play and wanted to know when we would walk over there. My daughter understands that something is going on with mommy that causes "cramps" and even going that one block is not going to end well. Anyway, on Shabbos I don't want to go anywhere. I have been out all week, don't make me walk anywhere I don't have to! Good thing one of my friends is next door so I can always pop in to visit.

I am at that stage where I get to visit the doctor every two weeks and I always mention how I feel and nothing is out of the ordinary so everything is a green light. YES, even biking! I have the most awesome route to the birthing center but I am hoping that it doesn't get to that. In fact, the other day I was talking to my friend and we chatted about taking me to the hospital. I said it would be epic if she had to take me to the hospital with an infant and two toddlers in tow. Don't worry, I have my camera ready because I am sure someone will be crying in that car!

Selfie/Belly shot. Yes, it is there
Other interesting facts about this pregnancy:

-No need for a bazillion maternity clothes: Unlike my first pregnancy in the ancient golden ages of 2003/4 I have managed to just stretch the heck out of all my skirts and sweaters. I might have to buy new clothes afterwards but I am lazy and just might just keep wearing what I have. I do have a couple of shirts and one maternity sweater but it looks like I might make to Baby Day with the shirt off my back

-This baby LOVES Mr. Peyos and our current kid. If they are sitting next to me chatting this baby will maneuver itself in that direction. It is reaching for them!

-This baby has Mr. Peyo's music interest: Heavy Metal, I kid you not! Right now our kid is getting bass lessons and even has her own bass to practice the bass lines to classic, not classical, songs. She is working on "Another bites the dust". Maybe I will make them become a band but more awesome than the Partridge Family.

-This baby holds the same hours as Mr. Peyos: Mr. Peyos is a night owl and so is this baby. I will feel rolling, moving, hiccuping and more moving from about 1am until 11am. It makes sleep miserable.

-I have biked 700 miles on the Edgerunner since we got it in December. Okay, maybe not so impressive but considering that I am schlepping a kid and pregnant, it is great!
If you want to keep up to date on my adventures, then follow me on Twitter already. I have time to blog now but once that baby breaks free then who knows.

The baby even has a theme song:

Monday, March 10, 2014

#Errandonne Challenge 2014

Purim is just around the corner. Remember last year where I dressed as a cow and biked around and lost my wallet? That was an adventure in itself. Our daughter dressed as a detective and my husband dressed as his jolly self.  What are the plans for this year? Well, I was going to dress as an oven with a bun and Mr. Peyos was going to dress as the baker. I don't know but it somehow seems really scandalous in this little religious community. I really don't care but what I do care about is time. I don't know have time to work on my own costume. I do have time to help my kid get hers together. Last year was the first time she wanted to be anything but a princess. So, I kinda wondered what she would want to dress up this time. Well, the final verdict was to dress as Smurfette. My sister sews so my daughter called her on the phone and begged that she make the costume for her. Sure, I could have bought the costume but it would not have suited our tznius requirements. Well, my sister is a perfectionist and made her the costumes specified to fit a Jewish religious girl.

What about the Edgerunner? Well, with a longtail I can now really decorate it. So, we decided to make a Smurf house and somehow attach it to the bike while I bike our kid around to make our Purim deliveries. I hope it doesn't rain. I have cardboard and now I just have to cut it and paint it. I need paint and will have to go buy some this week.

So, we have been prepping for this holiday and I decided to combine it with the #Errandonne challenge. You have time to join in! If this really preggo lady can do it so can you! At this point I wonder if I could manage to get 1000 miles down on the Edgerunner before I start labor. I am getting close to that number but I am not going to push myself.

Some of the errands I have completed have involved food. I went grocery shopping. On Sunday we did bike to buy household stuff because at some point my mother will be staying with us to help out. We bought her a new hermetically sealed comforter. We have down blankets but this was a must. We haven't finished buying the guest wares so I will have to finish that this week.

We have done other things but I forget to take pictures so I feel like I can't count them. :( Don't worry. I will take more pictures. In any case, I wonder if I can use the photo of my biking into a typically Seattle cloud as my Wildcard errand?

This errand was also completed on Sunday when daylight savings had taken a toll on little children, pregnant woman and men who need more beer.

While I was trying to configure that pink comforter on the bike my kid decided to climb on something.

This is how daylight saving makes kids just go bonkers. Hey, let me climb on this lion and then proceed to tumble off of it. Little did you know that not too long before this picture she decided to fall in a mud pit and looked stunned and sat there for about 10 seconds.

Daylight savings is not helping me parent! Actually Monday was pretty bad with car drivers and pedestrians.

I was unsure if I wanted to bike with so many sleep deprived drivers.

Who am I kidding? I biked anyway. I may look weird but I AM weird and biked toward clouds. See, the Seattle cloud of doom. I kept getting closer to that thing but never got close enough to get pelted. I stopped to text Mr. Peyos. Yeah, the act of texting and biking is hard. I don't know how young people do it. He in return texted me his view.

He response was to just park the bike and take the bus. So, I did a little hisbodidus and asked G-d to keep me dry. Guess what? It must have worked because by the time I got up close to the African American Museum it was smooth sailing:

On the way home the clouds loomed again but as soon as we entered the house the hard rain hit and my daughter was surprised we made it without getting wet. This is how we are working at our #errandonne challenge. Now to figure a reason to visit a bike shop...hummm.