Tag Archives: walking

Astrid: Walking Wrecking Ball

Our little girl is now walking. She’s a terror on two legs, chasing after cats and smashing into walls. She was a mischief maker before, and now she’s getting into all kinds of trouble. As a proud dad, it’s a joy to watch.

Blankie

She loves running around the house with little treasures in her hands (often tubes of toothpaste). She’s getting steadier every day, but she still falls a lot. Her crashes often look epic, but they never seem to discourage her. She just bounces back up and keeps running around.

Soon after Astrid started walking, we were in a small Indian chaat restaurant, eating bhel puri and samosas. Astrid was happy sampling all the dishes (making us proud parents) and running around the restaurant. Luckily we were the only ones there.

I was walking around with Astrid when she started running toward Emily, who was eating golgappa puri (the small puff balls that you pour tamarind sauce into) off of a cafeteria tray. Before Emily could move the food out of the way Astrid grabbed the edge of the tray, causing it to flip. The tamarind sauce made this perfect arch into the air and landed directly on Emily’s forehead. It was tragic but perfect comedy.

As Emily towelled up the puddles on her chest and lap, Astrid sat giggling. Our little mischief maker.

Little Cyclist

10 days before she started walking, she went for her first bike ride. When she’s older, she’ll be able to proudly proclaim she could bike before she could walk, even if it might be a stretch. She had a giant smile on her face the whole time, so we can’t wait to get her a balance bike.

Who Loves Folk Fest?

July was a good month. With our first camping trip, a day at Folk Fest, picnics in the park, and lots of popsicles to beat the heat.

Apples

Drum is Calling

Hose

Swinging

Flowers

More July pictures.

Astrid: Month 11

Mother's Day
Emily is now back at work and Astrid has started daycare. It’s been a hard transition, but luckily we had a full month to ease into it with mostly half days at daycare. Astrid no longer cries when she’s dropped and (fingers crossed) has started napping there. We’re lucky to have a patient caregiver to look after Astrid during the day, although I’m sure it’s been hard on her listening to Astrid wail when she refuses to nap.

For me, the hardest part has been giving up our data collection. With Astrid at daycare, we decided it was no longer worth collecting sleep, feeding, and diaper statistics. Asking our caregiver to use cloth diapers and feed Astrid a vegan diet was enough of a stretch without also asking her to track the timing of her poops and naps. So after 10 months of beautiful data, that project has come to an end.

I'll have 1 broccoli please
Astrid’s new love is climbing and standing. She’s so determined to master standing. She repeatedly climbs up something, lets go, and topples onto her bottom. It looks jarring even with her padded diaper, but she does it over and over. I admire her tenacity, but I was less impressed when she refused to sit in the bathtub, in her crib, and on the potty (aerial bombardments). Luckily that phase only lasted 2 weeks and she’s less fidgety now.


In the past week, she’s learned how to walk with a walker. She’s growing up so fast.

Ramp
She’s a lot of fun to play with right now. She can spend longer playing independently and she’s more interactive when you play with her. Our favourite game is hide and go seek. I’ll go hide around a corner or behind the couch and say “where’s daddy?” and Astrid crawls around and lets out a big giggle when she finds me.

Broccoli
Her other favourite game involves opening drawers and cupboards and emptying their contents. Classic.

Seeing the World Through a New Lense
It’s fun to rediscover the world through a child’s eyes. You can see her processing new experiences all the time, like how the tupperware lid makes everything look purple or the sound the pot lid makes when it hits the ground.

Exploring the Grass
Now that it’s truly summer in Vancouver, we’ve been enjoying more time outside. Astrid loves playing in the garden and eating dirt. We’ve taken her on a few bike rides and hikes. Nothing too adventurous yet, just some local hikes and a few a seawall bike rides.

Whyte Lake Hike

We picked up a used bike carrier and after some repair work to ensure the wheels don’t fall off, we’re ready for more bike adventures.

Biking on the seawall

Astrid is making a lot of noises and babbling. Her vocabulary includes “baba”, “booo”, “mama”, “lala”, and “pbwbbbb”. No “dada” yet and we’re not sure if “mama” means anything other than “feed me”.

Future Artist

We’re grateful Astrid has been healthy. Her skin has been better, with hardly any eczema on her arms or legs and only a small patch on her cheek that comes and goes.

Walrus

More photos.

Data Nerd – Mapping Cycling Mode Share in Vancouver

VancouverCyclingLevelsWithBikeRoutes
It’s raining outside. Must be Bike to Work Week. Thousands of riders are commuting by bike this week and logging their trips online, but just how popular is cycling in Vancouver?

I’ve heard some people claim that only 1.7% of people in Vancouver bike, while criticizing the investments in new bike lanes the city has made. That’s bullshit.

The number comes from Statistics Canada, but is often misunderstood and misused. The 2011 long form census (now optional and called the National Household Survey) has the following question:
How did this person usually get to work? (Their emphasis, not mine)

  • Car, truck or van – as a driver
  • Car, truck or van – as a passenger
  • Public transit
  • Walked to work
  • Bicycle
  • Other method

Across all of Metro Vancouver (including the burbs), 1.7% usually commute by bike. In the City of Vancouver it’s 4.3%. The neighbourhoods around downtown have cycling mode shares of 15%, but in southeast Vancouver there are many areas where no one bikes, or so the stats seem to indicate (full searchable results). It’s important to consider what the statistics represent.

The question asks what the usual means of commuting is. Think of all the recreational riders, weekend warriors, and fair-weather cyclists (cycling volumes often double in the summer vs the winter). It’s unlikely casual cyclists would identify the bicycle as their usual means of commuting to work. Unfortunately, the NHS doesn’t ask people what means of transportation they sometimes use, and there aren’t any other comprehensive data sets available. The NHS survey results might under-represent cycling but it does indicate a minimum level that cycling has reached (it’s safe to say at least 4.3% of Vancouverites commute by bike) and it offers a good opportunity to create maps and see trends over time.

Here’s are the Vancouver maps of commuting patterns in 2011 for cycling, walking, and public transit. The Vancouver Sun created similar maps a few years ago with 2006 census data. In 2006, the highest mode share for cycling was 12% in South Cambie. In 2011, Grandview-Woodland had 15% bike commuters, Strathcona had 14%, Mount Pleasant had 13%, and Kitsilano, South Cambie, and Riley Park had 12%. For the walking and public transit, the darkest areas represent mode shares of close to 50% (for walking in the West End and transit in Marpole and Renfrew-Collingwood).
VancouverCyclingLevels VancouverWalkingevels VancouverTransitLevels

If you want to play with interactive maps, you can open these files in Google Earth:
biking.kml
walking.kml
transit.kml
I generated these maps using KML files from techearth.net as a base. I would be easy to generate heat maps for all of Metro Vancouver, but I couldn’t find a kml file with census tract boundaries for more than the Vancouver proper.