Tuesday, July 18, 2006

One or Two?

Chris and I just had The Big Talk: do we want one or two?

He seemed hesitant to decide. I came to the discussion with an idea of what I wanted, but sensing what he wanted I decided I might change my mind. Each option has its pluses. One is easier to negotiate and is less expensive. Two is more fun, but makes us less streamlined.

We should have had the talk at home, but no. We were in public, around other people, with strangers. We were happy for the input. One dad offered some useful thoughts, but seemed a bit embarrassed to be pushing his views on us unasked.

This is a big decision we are making, something we'll have to live with for years to come. I mean, how often is it that you are forced to make a choice of this magnitude: one or two?

Well, in our case, the decision really isn't so big. Because today we were at REI, looking at bike trailers. We'd talked about whether to get a single or double trailer before, but apparently we both left the conversation thinking something different. I was thinking we'd get a two-seater, so that we could bring another child along and so that we would not have to get a new one if we do eventually answer "two" to that other big question. Plus, I would like to take the trailer to the grocery store and farmers' market. Doubles have more storage space than singles. Chris likes the narrower width of the one-child version. It is a little cheaper too, but this is not a huge factor. Chris figures that if we have a second child we can sell our old one and buy a double. I think he questions whether we'll really be shlepping a second child before then anyway, and I admit this probably won't be a common occurrence. And really, we might not have a second child. Or we might end up with twins next time. (At least, that's my fear.)

So no decision was made, despite a pleasant 40 minutes at REI talking to the bike expert and a dad who uses a single with his kid. There is no REAL rush. Despite my hope that I will use this all the time with Ada, our few attempts to put her in a trailer have not lasted long. After a minute she gets annoyed that she's strapped in and wearing a helmet while we smile at her and poke at the straps. She loves to play with her helmet, and despite my efforts to make her like wearing the thing by putting mine on before plopping hers on, she's not entirely convinced.

Do any of you have a bike trailer? If so, how old was your youngest child when you first started using it with her or him? How does your child like it, and of course, do you have a single or a double? Why?


  1. this post is a pertinent one for my life; my husband wants to buy a trailer, and I don't. he would be happy to get a one- *or* a two-seater, but I'm of the mind that my son will spit in our faces and run screaming rather than be forced into that teensy space, strapped down, wearing something on his head. the kid won't let us put a soft, floppy hat on his head; a helmet? a hard, strapped-on helmet? ha. HAHAHAHAHAHA. that's just plain funny, it's so ludicrous.


    I'm impressed by your bravery in trying to do any of these things, and having them work for any length of time, whatsoever.

    'cause let's face it, biking to the park blocks on a bright, fresh Saturday morning, kid in tow, with a little extry space for some veggies and flowers, sounds beyond delightful.

  2. Well I have twins, so obviously have a double. But we love it. We started using it when they were just over 1. Now they are almost 2 and 1/2 and it is still great. The only problem now is my bike broke, so I need a new one to pull them.

    But I love it. I actually bought it on Craigslist so it wasn't so expensive. The kids love it too. They used to just fall asleep in it but now they stay awake. In fact, they get mad when I stop for a rest.

  3. I actually bought a 2 seater on Craigslist, but once we got it home I realized that because the back goes straight up, when A wears a helmet her head is pushed forward (tuck your chin to see what I mean). She understandably hates this. The newer versions don't have this problem - they have a cut out so the helmet (and kid) can sit back comfortably.

  4. the one two or three thing pretty much comes up for every decision.
    Right now it is holidays...WHEN would have a REAL vacation if he knocks me up with No 3.???

    Can our new car handle a third car seat AND a dog??

    Have another kid and figure it out from there.

  5. A friend also had the same problem with her son's head being pushed forward. Try putting a small, flat pillow (or something comparable) behind her to scoot her forward so that there is room for her helmet? We bought a double from the get go, knowing that we probably would have two. We started using the trailer on my older son when he was about 1, and my younger when he was 6 months. The older one didn't like the ride so much initially. The younger one was just fine, perhaps because he's riding with his big brother. I've found that the trailer has been my sanity saver. If the boys are fussing, a jog or a bike ride typically calms them down. Even if you use the double for just one, the extra room just means that it's safer!

  6. well you have posed a good question. we have gone back and forth with the conversation about one or two and got nowhere. if we were to get a bike trailer, which we may soon, i would vote for the double. more room for one and if you are to have two then you don't need to worry about selling and buying etc.

    best of luck with getting her to like the thing.

  7. Good question...talking about it a lot lately in our home too. Maybe that is why we have put off the whole bike trailer issue.

  8. The arrival of #2 coincided with the attachment of the bike seat to p-man's stupid mountain bike that needed dumbass adaptor.. Speciial seat etc etc.

    It has been a great part of the new family -- they get a lot of shopping done and Miss Fancy LOVES riding.

    The trailers scare me.

  9. We bought a double because kid #2 was already in the offing. I love it and so does kid #1 (age 4). Kid #2 is 16 mo and not crazy about the trailer. The pillow trick described above does help, as does having a pacifier or a snack while he's riding.