Saturday, January 13, 2007

The Skiing Part of Skiingweaver

Hey, you may have noticed that the url for this blog/my etsy store are actually skiingweaver.blogspot/ And I haven't even talked at all about skiing!

Mostly because we haven't gone yet this year - me being hugely pregnant being the major obstacle there, lol. But also because we've been having a freakishly warm winter so far in New England. It's been crazy! Warmest December on record, EVER. Nice for the heating bills (and for people concerned about going into labor during a snowstorm...), terrible for skiers. Happily, places in Northern New England, like our favorite, Stowe, have stayed cold enough to make snow and get some snow, but the more Southern resorts are struggling from what I hear. And man-made snow is horrible in comparison to the real stuff.

We are hoping Bella (soon-to-be-3 year old daughter) will be able to really learn this year. We had her stomping around the yard on little mini-cross-country skis last year (too cute) and she really enjoyed that. And I've hiked up a bunny hill and skied down holding her, much to her delight, but that's about the extent of it at this point. But three is about when kids are strong/coordinated enough to start to learn to ski (older for snowboarding), and she's a very coordinated kid, with a good sense of balance, I think she'll pick it up pretty quickly. And be skiing circles around us by the time she's 10...

We downhill ski, obviously, snowboard, and cross-country - we both converted to telemark skis a couple years back, actually, for downhill. I get out my little slalom skis for early season rock skiing and on really icy days, or when I feel the need for speed, but I really love telemarking. It's really difficult! (Your heel is free for telemarking, and you do sort of a lunge for each turn, unlike on regular downhill bindings, where your heels are fixed to the ski.) Nice for a change - we've both skied long enough at this point (neither Carlos nor I learned to ski until after college, it's an expensive sport) that we can pretty much ski anything you throw at us if we're on normal downhill skis. About the only challenge on the East Coast at this point is Goat. (That's a Stowe reference. in case you're curious.)

We were lucky enough to ski all over the West before Bella came along and slowed us down a bit - and absolutely fell in love with Alta, in Utah. Amazing. Gorgeous. Incredible, incredible powder. You see it, you can ski it. Devil's Castle. Kathrine's Area. Unbelievably fun. No snowboarding, but Snowbird is right next door (literally) and you can snowboard there... We actually learned to snowboard at another Utah resort - Brighton - in about a foot of fresh snow. Makes all that falling down a lot more fun! We skied a lot in Colorado, too, and went to Taos quite a few times (another skiing only resort, but that was before we learned to board) but Alta is really my favorite. Although, the HGTV Dream House this year is at Winter Park, CO! (We've skied there, it was fun! Yup, we're entering the contest every day, I'd give you the url but I don't want you to enter, lol!)

These days we tend to go to little Waterville Valley, which is less than two hours up the road from us, in New Hampshire. It's a really nice little mountain, the lift tickets are reasonably priced (the season passes are a real steal), and it's just got a nice atmosphere. Last winter the snow was terrible (pure ice - and when I say ice, I mean ice, not like the little bit of crunchy stuff wimpy Western skiers complain about - I mean blue sheets of ice) but the winter before I finagled a baby-sitting arrangement with my Mum and would scoot up there to ski for a couple hours on Friday mornings. No lift lines, lovely views (it's in a National Forest), sweet. And we skied nearly every Sunday with Bella in tow, taking turns watching her in the lodge while the other person skied. It's not a very challenging mountain, but it is fun, and an easier drive for the munchkins at this point.

I really REALLY miss Stowe, though! We rented a house there for the season two years in a row and I got completely spoiled, skiing nearly every weekend all winter - and one of those years was an epic snow year, and we really got to know the mountain, venturing into the backcountry, etc. We would absolutely love to live near there someday - the only problem being how to pay for it! (Hard to find a job in hubby's line of work there, though there used to be some in Burlington...)

Anybody want a baby update? Conall is doing great, he's already regained his birthweight, and Bella is doing a great job as a big sister. Thank goodness Carlos is home from work this week and next, we'll see how it goes when he goes back and isn't around to keep Bella entertained! Yikes!

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