It is February 4th and I have yet to go snowboarding this season! How did that happen? This is the longest I can remember going without boarding since we started years ago. The reason, of course, is that we have not had winter this year. It was 60 degrees earlier this week! But, really, that should not matter because there is snow of some form at the ski resort near us. I need to be honest and admit the real reason, kids!
Jeff and I pride ourselves in the fact that we intentionally did not slow down or change our active outdoor lifestyle when we had kids. We just slid the kids into our adventures. But there’s something about skiing with four kids that makes me exhausted to even think about it. That something is the pre-ski event! This is no throw on your tennis shoes (I’m a Mid-Westerner, I don’t wear sneakers!) and walk out the door type adventure. In order to just get out the door I need to find long underwear, socks, long sleeve shirts, sweaters, pants, snow pants, ski coats, glove liners, gloves, helmets, shoes, and goggles. There will always be something missing, so the search is on to find something, anything that will work. A glove paired with a mitten? Close enough, your hands are covered right? Then onto the garage to pull out six pair of boots, skis, boards, and poles. These all need to end up in our truck along with people, duffel bags, and food because we can’t make the 20 minute drive to the slopes without a snack.
We finally arrive at the resort, but the worse is just beginning- the walk from the car to the lifts! Since it took us so long to leave the house we are now waved on to the back lot and forced to either wait another half hour for the shuttle or walk at 1/4 mile uphill in mud to the resort. We usually wait ten minutes, give up on the shuttle, and start the walk. The walk includes 4 dropped gloves, whining, a fall in a mud puddle, a ski pole poking a stranger in the back, tears, at least one child stopping mid walk because they are too tired to take another step, and lots of stares from those kid free people speeding past us. I am sweating by the time we reach the lodge and it is usually then that we realize that we left the passes in the truck.
My husband races back to get the passes and I get the bathroom duty which means creating a five foot high pile of gear in the hallway while I usher kids in and out and assist in re buttoning snow pants. We finally make it outside and everyone is “starving” because it’s been a half hour since their last snack. But we move onward to daycare and lessons for the little ones. Then finally, finally, my husband, two older kids and I get up the mountain and off the lift. We strap on skis, boards, helmets, goggles and head down the hill.
And, you know what, there’s nothing like it! The cool wind hitting your cheeks as you move down the mountain gaining speed and confidence. Making perfect turns, hitting the jumps just right, watching the kids improve with each run, and meeting at the bottom of the slope laughing, discussing the run, and ready to do it all again.
Heading home at the end of the day tired and happy, reliving best runs of the day, I realize that it was all worth it. I’ll just leave all gear in the car and deal with it tomorrow!
Can anyone relate? It’s so exhausting!