Sunday, September 1, 2013

First Communions, First Bikes and New Bikes

One of my family's traditions was that after someone made their First Communion they got their own bike.
This is my First Communion photo. My mother made the dress and veil. All four of my sisters wore the dress and veil for their First Communions too.
I remember my First Communion day like it was yesterday. As I was getting dressed, I was bending over to pull up my socks when one of my sisters bumped into me (to this day I cannot remember which one, maybe because of the head trauma), causing me to run the top of my head into the corner of the dresser. Corners of dressers are much harder than the head of a second grader. I ended up with a gaping wound that bled copiously, as well as a massive headache.
My mother stopped the bleeding eventually and I proceeded to finish getting dressed. The veil sat dangerously close to my fresh head wound.
I remember after I was dressed, I stood in front of a big peony bush in our side yard for a photo session. Every time the spring breeze blew across my head I felt terrible pain. My head ached and I was a bit nauseated too (probably had a slight concussion). I had to "suck it up" because it was a big day and we had to get to the church.
Having survived my First Communion Day (just barely), a couple of days later it was time to shop for my first bike.
There was an old Ace Hardware in town. It had wooden floors and big display windows on either side of the front door. In one of these windows was a row of bikes. I saw a purple bike with a sparkly, purple, banana seat. I had to have it! My bike looked similar to this one (alas, I have no photo of me and my bike, so I had to find something from the Internet). Mine was a Huffy bike.
I loved my bike! It was mine, all mine! First bikes are always special and memorable. I have had one or two bikes since my purple one but I haven't had a bike for twelve years now. I have been wanting one for some time and finally visited a local bike shop to see what they had in stock.
I "test rode" two of their bikes for women and decided I wanted 3G's single speed model called the Venice. They had several pretty colors to choose from. I opted for the gorgeous green bike.
I also bought a basket for my bike. I like its design and how easy it is to put on or remove without screws, bolts or nuts involved.
The Colonel found this wooden bike rack on the Instructables website. We made one for ourselves with a few improvements added and a paint job (I haven't taken any pictures of the rack we built. Shocking I know, as usually I am snap-happy. Thanks again for the photos from the Internet).

We wanted a way to transport our bikes in the back of our truck so that we could take them into town where we would ride them along the new bike/pedestrian paths.
Last week we did just that. The bike rack worked like a charm. We pedaled our way along the path, enjoying the sun and scenery. We stopped along the way to take in the beauty of the water's edge.
I cannot remember if Yam and Spud got their first bikes after they made their First Communions (maybe some residual effects from the head trauma at the time of my First Communion? I did ask The Colonel and Yam if they remembered but they didn't so maybe my previous head injury does not figure into this lapse of memory after all...whew). 


Here is a picture of Yam and Spud with their first bikes. We lived in Key West at the time and we would often ride our bikes through the cemetery (a very popular thing to do there).


  1. great choice of color sister! Kit

  2. It wasn't me who knocked you over, at least I don't think it was. My First Communion bike was a purple and white Huffy. Jenn

  3. Hi, i stumbled upon your site following a google image search for "bicycle rack truck bed wood". Today i framed out my own. Paint is to come. it will be much easer to get them strapped down and also to get the bike trailer between them. Thanks for posting!

    1. make one of those