Bicycle Season

Bike Season

After nearly a year of romanticizing leisurely bike rides to the farmers market and around the Esplanade, I finally took the plunge and purchased a bicycle. Reality set in quickly, as it’s a bit of a struggle to shove the bike into our small, creaky elevator, and I’m still too nervous to ride on city streets alone. Nonetheless, I’m over the moon about my purchase!

So far I’ve only biked to Tatte Bakery in Beacon Hill, and done part of the Esplanade and the Battle Road Trail in Lexington, but I have lots of bike trips in the works (including Burlington, VT and the Cape Cod Rail Trail).

Cute Bicycles

^^Luckily, I was able to snag both the bike and the basket on sale

When deciding on a cruiser, I scanned the web a lot (including Craigslist) and ended up narrowing my search down to the four bikes below (hand brakes were mandatory), all around the $150 price range. (Keep an eye on the price — they were nearly all on sale when I was looking about a month ago.) I’ve also included a roundup of cute bike accessories, including helmets and baskets.

These bikes aren’t necessarily intended to power you through iron man races, but they do encourage just the sort of enjoyable daily activity that is so closely linked with health and longevity.

Best Bikes and Bike Accessories

1. Schwinn Admiral Hybrid Bike (Wal-Mart, $159) – this is mine!

2. Front Handlebar Wicker Bike Basket (Amazon, $27.95) – this is mine!

3. Nutcase Mini Dot Helmet (Amazon, $69.99)

4. Huffy Fresno Cruiser Bike (Target, $139.99)

5. Huffy Sportsman Cruiser Bike (Kohl’s, $179.99)

6. Schwinn Pattern helmet (Target, $26.99)

7. House of Talents Oblong Bike Basket (Amazon, $49.94)

8. Schwinn Perla Cruiser Bike (Amazon, $177.75, also seen at Academy, Kohl’s and Wal-Mart)

Any favorite bike routes in New England? Do tell!

–  Kelly

Healthy Fruit and Veggie Platters inspired by The Very Hungry Caterpillar

veryhungrycaterpillar

Like many children, my story time picks were often supplemented with a colorful dose of Eric Carle. While Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? was probably the family favorite, perhaps the most iconic Eric Carl book is The Very Hungry Caterpillar. In fact, if Pinterest is any indication, this classic story is now a very popular party theme. Anyone can arrange green and red cupcakes on a platter and call it a day, so I scoured the web to bring you the best HEALTHY platters inspired by Eric Carle’s classic. Whether you are throwing your own Very Hungry Caterpillar party and looking for healthy platters and snacks, or you simply want to jazz up your children’s meals with inspiration from this much beloved story, the following images should inspire you.

cute food for kids

Apple + Babybel cheese caterpillar from Cute Food For Kids

bajiroo

Fruit Caterpillar from Bajiroo

sushi

Caterpillar sushi from Anna the Red

bless this mess

Adorable healthy fruit tray from Bless this Mess Please

frostme

Another adorable fruit tray from Frost Me Blog

And while the following aren’t neccessarily Eric Carl inspired, they still keep with the caterpillar theme:

little page turners

PB + Banana Caterpillar from Little Page Turners

Hungry caterpillar sandwich

Caterpillar sandwich, original source unknown

kabobs

Caterpillar grape kabobs, from Healthy and Fun Snacks for Kids