Family Biking: Iva & Brian
We are constantly amazed by the biking families in Chicago – your commitment to biking with your kids, the adventures you embark on, the daily school drop off by bike – and want to share these stories, so other families just starting on their biking journeys can know they're not alone or crazy :)
Tell us about you & your family! Names, ages of kid(s), whatever you're comfortable with sharing.
Iva & Brian, Will 6.5, Lukas 3.5, Jacob 1.5.
What neighborhood do you live in?
What's your current bike set up? What do you love about it? What would you change?
Bunch Bikes cargo tricycle with e-assist and a Melia seat for the youngest. I love the three-wheel-ness of it - I feel more stable on it with so much weight in the box. It's hard to maneuver over potholes and bumps, and not very agile in general, and I have to be careful on slanted roads and going up or down at certain angles.
What drew or inspired you to bike with your kid(s)?
Mostly my husband who started biking everywhere a few years ago. But also... seeing Elsbeth do it made me believe I could do it too.
How did you get started biking as a family?
Our first family bike was a Taga 2.0. I loved it, but we quickly outgrew it.
Share a favorite, family-friendly, quiet neighborhood route/shortcut in the city.
We love the 606! I haven't found many shortcuts yet.
Where does an average day of riding take you? School, grown up commute to work, grocery store, weekend errands, trips to the park, etc.
My husband takes Divvy bikes all over for work as a private guitar instructor - to Oak Park, the west loop, Pilsen, Lincoln Park, to name a few. He uses the tricycle to get groceries. I take my kindergartner to and from school, meet up with friends, go to church, YMCA, parks, libraries, shopping. We are carfree so we bike everywhere.
People often say that biking with your kids is "dangerous" or "crazy" or "so brave". How do you respond to that?
I yell "No it's noOOooot!!" But seriously I don't respond politely. Driving with kids is much more dangerous, statistically.
How has biking with your kid(s) impacted your family's life?
Being outdoors is so great for our mental health. We can get places a lot quicker on a bike than on buses & trains, so that part of life is easier. We were all pretty tough to begin with, but biking has made us even tougher.
Do your kid(s) ride independently? What's the best part & hardest part of having independent riders?
No, and I'm a bit sheepish about it, but it's really difficult for me to get my kids outside on their bikes. I would have to supervise, but I have one little one not old enough to ride at all, they're not old enough to ride the neighborhood by themselves, but we don't have a place on our residence for them to ride. Maybe when they're older, or maybe this summer ...
Tell us one of your favorite or most memorable biking-with-kids moments or adventures.
We love taking "pajama rides" just before bedtime.
Thanks, Iva! Pajama rides … what a terrific idea.