My 16-year-old and 11-year-old step-sons didn't have much of an opinion either way, so it was up to my 13-year-old step-daughter to decide where they'd spend their days. She chose their mom's house, so that will be the plan for all three kids. Their bio-mom (the "momster") lives about 8.5 miles from our home, so instead of having them bike to the momster's house every day, my husband said he'd keep their bikes locked up at his office, which is only about 3.5 miles from the momster's house. The kids can ride to work with my husband every morning and pick up their bikes, then bike the 3.5 miles to their mom's house. In the afternoons, they can bike back to his office and ride home with him.
It's actually easier/faster to have the kids bike to their mom's house from his office than it is for him to bring the kids there in the morning and pick them up in the afternoon. The commute to the momster's house is horrible and takes around 30 minutes per trip, due to traffic and congestion.
The boys (who didn't have an opinion about where they spent their summers, and therefore deferred to their sister to make the decision), are a-ok with biking the 3.5 miles to their mom's house. My step-daughter is absolutely livid that we expect her to actually bike anywhere this summer. The moment the plan was determined, she called her mom and started crying and complaining about how horrible my husband (her dad) is for making her bike.
Biking a total of 7 miles a day every other week as a 13-year-old is not what I would consider to be cruel or unusual. In fact, when I was 13 years old, I willingly rode my bike upwards of 10 miles each day because I thought it was fun, and my bike was the key to my independence.
Nonetheless, my step-daughter feels differently. I think she will forever be one of those people with a victim mentality. Everything happens to her and nothing is ever her fault. She has been incapable of considering anybody but herself for as long as I've known her, and it's frustrating to see her become more and more vocal about her dissatisfaction with each and every part of her life.
She told my husband earlier this week that she'll just live at her mom's house all summer instead of having to bike back & forth to his office. She'd rather not see her dad for the summer than have to pedal a bike for a half hour every other week. Of course, she does not get to make the choice to live with one parent or the other. Believe me, if she could make that choice, she'd be flip-flopping between houses every other week, like she already does under the legal custody arrangement. Every time one of her parents did something that wasn't favorable, she'd pack up her stuff and move houses; that's just how she operates.
In any case, it's been settled. For the summer, the plan will continue as my husband laid out. The kids will bike from his office every morning, and will bike back to his office every afternoon. Of course, when it rains, he'll go out of his way to bring them to the momster's house and/or pick them up.
I'm glad this issue has been settled! We'll see what happens next summer - it's always an adventure.