Sunscreen, at least 30 SPF
Two children who have never skied before
One husband who was a wild and crazy skier for a decade before he married me
Me, who is not wild about skiing, but is wild about my husband and willing to go along with the idea
Reservation at a lodge on the mountain which possesses a heated, year-round swimming pool and laundry facilities
Two St. Bernard rescue hounds - residents of the lodge
Drive children and husband to the mountain and check into the historical lodge. Feel anxiety rise when you realize what you've truly gotten yourself into and that you've promised to stay here for five days.
Calmly reassure husband that things will be fine even though he lost his wallet during breakfast and we haven't even rented skis yet.
Measure impatient children for skis and boots and slather sunscreen on them since it's sunny and 65 degrees outside. (Note to self: next time remember that the sun will reflect UP off of the snow and be sure to cover underside of 7-year-olds nose with sunscreen so that unsightly peeling and painful burn will not result). Take several photos of them in their impossibly cute ski suits and hold your breath as they stand at the top of the bunny hill.
Try not to fall down when your oldest child takes off down the mountain as if she were born on skis, making big swoopy turns and stopping carefully at the bottom of the slope.
This week turned into a dream! S. and E. got up every morning and got their lift tickets as soon as the lifts opened. We typically did not see them again until the lifts closed for the day. They came back tanned and giggling, pleased with themselves for skiing down the biggest slopes on the hill and telling inside jokes all day. L. and I dutifully made several trips down the bunny hill until we felt as though we'd done enough to quit for the day. We indulged in hot chocolate, lunch, and every afternoon found us impersonating mermaids and dolphins in the pool at the lodge. We all met for dinner, patted the rescue dogs, and fell into bed by 8pm. The girls were so exhausted that they were asleep within minutes and it was all S. and I could do to read a chapter or two before we followed suit.
S. confessed to me that this was his dream - to have this special, fun time with his daughter and every time I think of it I get teary. They are both looking forward to many more ski trips together and I can't wait to hear all about them. I might even be convinced to go along if the day lodge has wi-fi.....