We took Jessamyn skiing for the first time this past weekend and oh my gosh it was amazing... aaaand a lot of work! We are hoping to go every weekend this winter as both Jessamyn and Ben have season passes at Copper Mountain so it is a good chance for both of them to get in a lot of time skiing. For Jessamyn we were so excited to take her and are really hoping this helps her feel comfortable skiing and maybe even help build a love for being outdoors in winter and a skill set that I honestly still struggle with (and wish I was more comfortable on skis). I am going to be completely honest this first time was pretty rough so I have included a short list of 5 things that we learned and/or that we will do differently next time.
1. Ski rental might not be an option - This was something we had expected to do, figuring that Jessamyn was going to be growing and so there was no reason to buy her skis BUY no one had rentals small enough for her so we ended up buying her skis. The good news is a lot of places have a trade in program for kids so next year we can trade in her old skis for a significant discount on new ones which Ben calculated comes out to about the cost of a season long rental... so I guess it works out.
2. Dont necessarily expect to just jump in and go skiing right away - So we took Jessamyn up to ski this weekend and kind of expected her to want to try BUT the minute she got out of the car and put on her coat and helmet and gloves she had a total melt down. Like literally the whole shuttle ride from the parking lot to the resort she was screaming. SO we spent a good portion of that day just sitting in a coffee shop letting her adjust to the atmosphere of a ski resort and kind of take things at her own pace. it would have been really easy to be frustrated with her but we gave her space and let her feel it out and by the end of the day she was on her skis and having a great time.
3. Ski gear is not potty training friendly - Oh my gosh every single time Jessamyn had to go to the bathroom it was like peeling an onion. Oh and she developed a hot chocolate addiction while we were up there so trust me the bathroom trips were in the double digits. Layer after layer of clothing all in a public bathroom. I think next time... actually I am not sure what we would have done differently I would just say be prepared and maybe strip them down to their base layer before walking into a tiny bathroom stall.
4. Don't expect to ski along side them right away - So pretty much skiing with Jessamyn that first day was basically just holding her up and helping her get use to being on the snow and the feeling of being on skis. Ben actually went off by himself for a while to ski while I watched both girls because when she was actually out there she needed our full attention and encouragement. Hopefully someday she will be skiing right along with Ben but for now it is a lot of just helping her keep her balance and going at her pace.
5. Watching your child learn a skill for the first time is AMAZING - This might be a given but seriously I was beyond proud of Jessamyn. Something about watching her work so hard at something and go from a place of being completely terrified to asking if we could go again tomorrow was just awesome. Seriously I can't wait to watch her progress this winter because even just that one day was so beautiful and so worth all the hard parts.
Okay, what was your first experience taking your child skiing like? Or you memories of skiing as a child? I'm really hoping this creates beautiful memories for her. I know for us it was so amazing and we will definitely be going again... and by that I mean Ben and Jessamyn will be skiing and i'll be drinking hot chocolate in the lodge with Ophelia but still it counts and its going to be awesome!