On January 3rd we packed up the cars and headed north for the family vacation we started planning last summer. Back then, when we weren’t shoveling snow off the driveway in subzero weather, a trip to the ski resort in January sounded like a great idea... Ha! Thankfully it “warmed” up a bit, but it was snowing when we left home and the ski resort got around 12” of new snow on the day we arrived. After we were all settled into the Selkirk Lodge the kids all watched a movie together while Sean and I got to go out for a little dinner date and explore the resort. The pool is heated, but we decided to skip! ;)
The next morning the weather was better and we woke up to a beautiful sunrise and a nice view of the lifts from our suites on the top floor!
The two older boys learned how to ski a number of years ago (remember the Ski Cake I made?!), back when we were still living in Oregon, but this was the first time for our next five children, and the first time in over 25 years for Sean and I! He last skied in Arizona while in college, and I'm guessing my last time was sometime between ages 17-19... Can't remember exactly.
We decided to have (Bud) our 10 year old wait until the next day, when he and our other four beginners would have their first ski lesson (it worked out wonderfully that the weekly homeschool ski lessons we put them in this winter started during our trip!), but the rest of us headed out to give it a shot on the bunny hill after a brief lesson from (Ranger) our 19 year old who was super excited to be back on skis!
My brother-in-law, Fr. D. Gordon, drove up to join us since it happened to be his day off for the week! It was so much fun and he did amazing for his very first time skiing, and in a cassock no less!
We all stuck just to the bunny hills for the first day of skiing. (Plus it was a much cheaper lift ticket for all of us adults!) The little girls also got a turn to get outside and enjoy the snow too!
After skiing we all enjoyed Powder Hound Pizza and playing board games with Uncle/Father.
Wednesday morning five of the kids had lessons! While Sean was helping our 10 year old check out skis the rest of us waited for the lifts to open and classes to begin.
After lunch the three older boys headed up the mountain to explore some of the blue runs.
The kids all picked up skiing fast and it has quickly moved to the top of their "favorite sports" list.
(In case you are wondering about my ever changing ski goggles... On the first day I used Captain's while he wasn't skiing, then Twinkle Toes while she wasn't skiing... then the next day I just bought my own pair at one of the resort shops!... )
I especially loved all the lift rides/one-on-one visits with our children.
All the kids slept very well! I, however, did not (see below)...
Only two of the boys were up for skiing a third day! They headed out while Sean and the kids checked out of the lodge, unburied the cars, and loaded our luggage.
As some of them headed back home, a few of us waited for the boys to finish skiing.
Our Cars - Day 1 vs. Day 4
How did I do? Well... I don't recommend skiing for the first time in over 25 years while unknowingly coming down with round two of a certain virus.
On Tuesday night I was feeling extremely sore and just off... I managed to put the ski boots back on the next day, and ski another ten runs (approx. 5 miles), but by Wednesday evening I texted a couple friends: "I'm dying." They both responded "It's a good sore!"
There was nothing good about it... My whole body hurt like crazy, my head was throbbing, sore throat, nauseous, and I was googling things like "can cold air exercise make your throat hurt" and "what is altitude sickness" (which I then started to convince myself was the problem) and even "what are the odds of catching (virus) a second time"... (After our toddlers were sick with RSV and Croup for most of December, which ended up being a bad cold for the rest of us, we had been making extra effort and taking a lot of precautions to get and then stay healthy for our ski trip... sigh... Thank you God for these extra little crosses!) I spent that last night in the lodge taking multiple hot showers, applying Deep Blue Rub on every muscle, heating up the hot pack over and over, and really wishing we had packed along some pain meds (which I rarely take and hadn't since our two year old's birth)!
By Thursday it took everything I had to help pack up, wait for two of the boys to finish skiing, stand and smile while saying a quick hello to some friends near the lifts, get the car out of the snowdrift, clean up the ice chunks covering the entire inside of the car from the three cans of Strawberry Waterloo that had been forgotten in the car and then froze/exploded (!!!!!), and then drive that second car the long drive home during the second winter snow storm of the year (the first was on the drive up lol). We got home at 5pm, I ran a hot bath with Epsom Salts, took half a pain med left over from our two year old's birth, and went to bed. The next morning I felt like my oxygen was low (it registered 92 on the oximeter) and Sean was able to round up an extra home test from his brother which showed positive. I KNEW I was in too much pain for it to be JUST from skiing! ;)
Other than that, skiing was an absolute blast and it was an amazing family vacation.
I really hope we can do it again someday!