Friday, May 31, 2013

Shortest Post Yet, and Even Worse, No Pictures

Is this a sign my blog is already running out of steam? Or that I just forgot my camera? Happily, my legions of fan(s) inspire me to continue.

Memorial Day while the twins were still asleep at naptime, Henry and I headed out to knock off a few local playgrounds. He rode his suddenly too small 16" wheel Specialized Hotrock, I rode my now-for-sale Soma Juice.

Our first stop was #44 Shannon Glen Park. Here, Henry played hide and seek with a pair of sisters. The cool thing about this playground is the trolley/zipline thing. Pictures to come in the future, most likely.

Next up was #6 Belvedere Park. The only real significant thing here is that it contains two separate play structures, which makes playing our Monster game very easy: the kids can run from one to the other, while the Monster tries to get them.

Two more down, 46 to go.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The Long Walk

Post #2 and I'm already deviating from my theme: this post has nothing about bikes.

I got the idea to take Henry backpacking this summer. I don't backpack much, but lately I've picked up better camping gear for my bike camping trips. With this lighter gear, I should be able to manage packing stuff for two: Henry can carry his teddy bear(s) and maybe his pillow, and I'll likely carry everything else. This is why backpacking with the twins may not happen anytime soon.

The only place I've backpacked in Ohio is Zaleski state forest. They have a very well laid out backpacking loop, which should work nicely for our first trip. My only concern: would Henry be up to the five or six miles of walking this would involve? I wasn't sure, so I decided on a local test: we would walk to our favorite lunch spot, Chipotle, about two miles away. Four miles should be an adequate dry run.

This past Sunday, we set out about 10:25 in the morning. We walked through #3 Avery Park, though I'm not counting this as we didn't stop at the playground, and it deserves its own post. Past St. Brigid, through the tunnel under Muirfield Drive, and before you know it, we were at Chipotle right when they opened at 11:00.

Victory! Celebrated with a burrito bowl.

 We took some more pictures on the way home. Here's Henry at a random parking lot outside a fast food restaurant. Nothing special here, but when Henry asks to get his picture taken, I oblige:

On the way home, we took a different route through #36 M.L. "Red" Trabue Nature Preserve.

We saw some swans:
or maybe they were white geese. Is there a difference? I'm not sure, don't care.

Saw the old house whose original occupant I forgot:

Then ran into our old neighbors Steve and kids at the pond:

They let Henry borrow their fishing pole, and:

Dinner! Or not.

Further on, we stopped by #56 Wyndham Park, a pretty typical neighborhood playground save for its two high slides and a sand volleyball court:

Henry proved his mettle on this Long Walk, with no whining or foot dragging. I think he's ready to head out overnight.

Two more parks down, 48 to go.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013


Here in Dublin, Ohio, it always seemed like we have a lot of parks around town, but I never realized it was quite so many. But nowadays with the "internet" I can easily check just how many:


That's a lot of parks. That got the ball rolling for me:

- I have kids
- Kids like playgrounds
- I like bikes (and my kids)
- My wife might enjoy a quiet house now and then

So naturally, what else to do but bike to every playground this summer?

Dublin's map above is nice if you're online, but isn't so user friendly if you want a paper copy. So I made a printable copy here:

I printed this out and it's been our "treasure map" to get us started. At six, Henry has the responsibility to check off the playgrounds as we visit them.

On our first trip out, we hit # 23 (Hawk's Nest Park)--no pictures, we'll have to come back later this summer. Likewise for #21 (Earlington Park),  and #17 (Donegal Cliffs Park). I did snag a picture or two at #8 (Brandon Park):

Henry and Sam were both on this trip, and they found this park particularly boring: no playground. But there's a pond and a nature trail! Even the prospect of throwing rocks in the pond--usually a sure thing--didn't interest them. It's odd that I found this park nice and relaxing.

Four parks on the first day, five if you count the fact that we hit Hawk's Nest again on the way home.

I was beat when we get home. I thought it was just from being out of shape and towing around 150 pounds of kids and bike trailers, but it turns out my rear brake pad was dragging. D'oh.


Day two was also busy, as we knock off all the parks close to home.

I thought we had hit #20 (Dublinshire greenway), but it turns out we missed this one. I don't usually carry a phone with me while riding, kind of purposefully, so I'm not able to check the detailed street map to find the parks. As a guy, I'm not allowed to ask directions--and besides, roaming around lost is part of our fun. Some days.

#43 (Scottish Corners) still has no pictures, as I was just thinking about this blog.

 #47 (Stonefield Park) had an excellent playground, featuring a bouncy thing with side car:

and the usual assortment of tubes, slides and ladders:

Then it was back home, to ice cream and my visiting mother in law. Maybe we should have hit another park or two.

Six parks down, 50 to go.

Billie Bar Review, with bonus Pine Tar Soap review

I placed a Rivendell order the other day to try out a few new products. My main purchase was a new bar for my Fuji. The Billie bar is an evo...