To Market, By Bike

I signed up for David Suzuki’s Fall Family Challenge to get back outside.

Yes, even though we are always outside.

Signing up was not so much about needing motivation, but supporting the initiative. Plus, I hope for some new ideas.

This weeks activity recommends biking to a farmer’s market or community garden, then having a discussion about what’s in season and what we can eat locally. Many Saturdays you will find us at our local market, but today I add in a bike and community garden.

Brennyn has no interest in the bike trailer today since she “can ride my pedal bike because I do not have training wheels!” as she will tell anyone and everyone who will listen. That may be so but she’s not quite ready to bike to downtown just yet, so instead we park at the market and take a bike from there to the ocean.

Bal is off on his own adventure today, biking in a year-end all-day ride with his buddies so it’s just me and the girls, Riley included. No better way to spend a Saturday morning!

Once the girls spot the ocean, the bikes are ditched in favour of a sprint on the receding tides muddy shore.

Amidst a slow saunter watching them, Kaya suddenly comes racing back, grabs my hand, and vaults me forward faster. “Look at this!” she squeals and I wonder at what treasures abound. Bird print ones! Perfect ones.

Back on our bikes for a short time, we abandon them once more to practice a little slacklining. The only one I could do was the one that sank right to the ground, Brennyn never did let go of this stump,

and Kaya, well, she would have done well to keep her bike helmet on! (Still smiling! No injury)

We carry on once more, hitting every puddle we can find, of course.

Completing the loop and almost back to the car, we stop at the local community garden. Brennyn and I had just visited the one closer to our home the other day, but this did not dim the excitement at seeing things GROW. Their favourite finds are the ones that they actually love to eat. Carrots, zucchini, and peppers, yum! I ooh and ahh over the gorgeous Kale and vibrant cabbage while the girls hop up and down at the mini pumpkins (okay, squash which I try to explain but they keep insisting it’s a pumpkin until we actually find a pumpkin!)

Another hit was the brussel sprouts tree. They think they’re soooo cute and can’t wait to try them at Thanksgiving (hahahahahahaha!) Watch, now they’re going to like them…

Treasures always abound if you’re open to it. We are very open on this day!

After which, we are starving and I need veggies so we hit up the Farmer’s Market for local veggie pakoras, the must-have kettle corn and a bag full of veggies to take home. We picnic at the park, meet friends who join us and laze on the grass at what has become a delightful sunny afternoon. The girls climb trees and play hide n’ seek with their friends while I contemplate a discussion about food miles and carbon footprints. Only then I realize, having a three and five year old means that they don’t really understand, nor want, a lesson on these things. Not formally. Which doesn’t mean they aren’t still learning about them.

Because just the act of witnessing food arising out of dirt, bursting from a stem gives them wisdom. Digging that dirt, watering those leaves, even more so. Going for a bike, getting really hungry, learning that the kale and carrots in these pakoras we are gobbling up right now, were picked just yesterday is the best kind of lesson.

I’m sure in a few years I will introduce carbon footprint to them more formally. In the meantime, they will come to learn these things as they should.

Naturally. Organically.


One thought on “To Market, By Bike

  1. LOVE this post Kari! What a great adventure with your girls. What an amazing garden. Totally wish that mine had bloomed that way! Ha, right! After you posted about the David Suzuki thing on fb, I signed up too, but it seems I didn’t get an email yet. I recall that it said the week of Sept 26 was the start. I will look into it. Like you said, its not that we aren’t outside enough, its all about allowing more purpose and learning into our choices. Have fun with the challenge! PS. I collected my detox challenge book today too. Let the CHALLENGE begin!

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