Articles Related To: Kids
For weeks now, I've talked about the weekly ski programs the kids are in at Park City Mountain Resort. Emily continues to do so well in her Saturday Adventure and Bren did another Signature 3 class. I'll give you a quick update with some cute video and then I want to talk a little about daycare since that is so important if you are an out of town visitor and have little guys.
This blog is short and sweet! After a great year of lessons last year for Emily and a GREAT start for Brennan this year, I got the kids up the Majestic lift at Brighton. It was kind of fitting since their first lessons were at Brighton last year! I'm not going to mention that when Brennan got to the top, he decided he was done skiing.
We are lucky to live in Utah! The program I'm going to tell you about is either for those that live here or winter here in Utah for 10 weeks. Basically, it is a 10 week program for 5-6 year olds. It is called the Saturday Adventure. It takes place at Park City Mountain Resort. I'm going to say right now....Emily is very lucky! How many kids at 5 years old get to ski every Saturday from 9:15-3pm? In fact, how many Moms get to ski every Saturday? I'll give you a hint...not many and not me!
There are so many choices of ski resorts in Utah. That is what is so special! From the Park City resorts to Ogden Canyon to southern Utah. But, in my opinion, one of the most beautiful is Sundance. There is a reason Robert Redford picked this location. I have to admit, I've not skiied here a lot. I'm also a big hiker and one of the greatest Utah hikes is Mt Timpanogas. It is the face you see at Sundance when you are skiing. Now sure, there are bigger resorts, but if you're looking for a relaxed day of skiing, great food and stunning views...head here.
There are 2 options with skis; season rentals or daily rentals. Season rentals are normally done in the fall. You rent for the whole season for a very decent price. If the kids feet grow, head back to the shop and they'll swap out your skis/boots. Also, you get free wax when you need it. Definitely the way to go with kids! After all, it's about saving money, isn't it? To buy them skis each year when you can't even keep them in shoes is hard to do. If you do daily rentals, I've got a deal for you! Ski n' See will give you an extra 25% off your daily or extended daily rental at any of it's locations if you go onto the rental page and in the promo code, fill out PRIMARY for the month of December. There are several different levels of skis to rent. The price of the daily rental depends on what skis you want. If you're like me, you don't really know the difference. The demo skis are the newest and best technology of skis. If you want to save some money, you can rent the sport package.
I'll do a little intro for those that didn't follow my blog last year. My name is Jodi Saeland and I am a Mom first and foremost and a Meteorologist second. A year and a half ago I decided to leave my Broadcasting job for the stay at home Mom job. Wow! Big shout out to all the Moms out there! Hardest, yet most rewarding job there is. I have recently started back to work on a minimal basis as a broadcast Meteorologist once again. So, I will be sharing my weather knowledge of this winter with you all.
The other part of my blog will be the trials of teaching, or continuing to teach, my kids to ski.
It is now the end of April and winter is in full swing. Snowbird has had over 30" in 2 days. Yep, spring in the Rockies.
We, however, have finished our season and what a great season it was. Emily exceeded all my exceeded all my expections. I thought maybe by the end of the season, she'd be able to ski green runs...but she was doing the blues and very well I may add!
I've lived in Utah long enough to know we rarely if ever finish a ski season with low snow. Now this year, it has been slow to come and some have complained. Come on...even a below snow year in Utah is high in most other areas. Such is the story of the last week. I'm going to use the stats at Alta. As of March 30th, we were at 396" for the season. That is slightly below the 500" per year, but still...that's a lot of snow. Then...Ma Nature changes it up....the jet stream shifts north from it's El Nino position of all season. Just like that, 2 huge storms blow in in the classic winter pattern...north flow, big low overhead, lake effect happens and just like that... we're at 493" at Alta for the season! Let's do the math....almost 100" with 2 storms, 7 days!! Yep, welcome to Utah.
I can't believe it is the end of March already and we are nearing the end of the season. Although...Mother Nature has other plans as a BIG storm is blowing in tonight. You always can tell the strength of the storm by the intensity of the wind. With temps in the upper 60's in Salt Lake, you know the cold front coming is going to be good. So, if you think it's time to hang up your skis...WRONG, we're just getting started. Check out the National Weather Service...good if you're not ready for winter to be done.
So, we had 5 consecutive Sunday lessons at Brighton and it was awesome! The terrain was so good for Emily to really get her confidence up. She was in and out of the trees (I can't even do that), and felt very comfortable. She grew from green runs to easy blues by the end. I've talked about the advantage of weekly lessons....same instructor, same students...they know the routine.
I've been in Utah for 13 years. I learned to ski later in life and have had a great time. A lot of my time has been spent at Alta. I love the drive up Little Cottonwood Canyon and the views once you get to the top of Supreme lift. You can see down the valley and the beautiful views of Mt Superior. It truly is stunning. I have so many pictures from this spot; me and Husband, me and Dad, me and friends, just me.... now I can add me and Emily! Something I never imagined at the start of this ski season.
If you're looking for something to do with the kiddos for a few hours, tubing is a great activity. It doesn't take a ton of energy and the kids love it. We decided to check out Gorgoza tubing hill. It is located just off the Jeremy Ranch exit off I-80 so quick access from Salt Lake or from Park City.
After 6 Friday afternoon lessons at Deer Valley, we have arrived at the Ski Extravaganza. It is the last day of lessons and the kids put on a little show for the parents to show them what they have learned during their time. It is a beautiful day at Deer Valley and I've decided to take Brennan out to the moving carpet to see if he'll do a little skiing as well. After lugging all our equipment in and getting Emily sorted out, me and Bren head out. First off....way overdressed. Ok, up the hill we go anyway to get to the beginner area. I've done everything right...had snacks, water, change pants...what could really go wrong. Yep...you guessed it....he doesn't want to go! We go up once and he lays down on the ground and won't move. He's sweating because I've overdressed him and he's done before we started. Again, a lesson I've taught throughout my blog to everyone but myself, DON'T try to teach your 2 year old to ski. Get an instructor. At this age, if they don't want to do it...game over! So, we decide to lounge in the sun and wait for Emily's show to begin.
Let's talk Brighton. A very well oiled machine with lessons as you've seen in previous blogs I've done. First off, you can register online. The great thing is...you do it before hand. You will pay for the lessons and then get your waiver in the mail to sign and mail back. This is great so you don't have to worry about paperwork and chaos on the first day. If you need equipment....no worries. Go an hour early to get and pay for your rentals. If you want to rent for the entire 5 weeks, you'll get a discount. You'll pay and get outfitted the first day. You'll return at the end of the lesson, but every other week; you just need to go pick up your rentals. You've already gone through the rental/pay line, so get your gear and go. No need to stand in the pay line. Nice when you have wiggly kiddos anxious to hit the slopes.
Living in the Salt Lake Valley, you get spoiled by a short drive up to the Cottonwood Canyons. So, when I decided to go to Snowbasin, I packed up the car with snacks, extra clothes and water like we were driving to St George. In just over an hour with mostly freeway driving, we were there. If you've never driven it, a beautiful drive with wonderful views through Mountain Green. No lines, blue skies and easy parking. I just have to say that with 2 kids and 3 sets of ski gear, it is a JOB to get us all to the door. Snowbasin has a GREAT solution. Little equipment trolleys. Now why doesn't everyone have these? You pull up to the curb and unload all your gear into the trolley and away you go. Saved my back and arms!!
Everyone heads to the slopes to have a good time. With little ones, this means also staying warm enough, being well fed and NOT tired.
As far as clothes go...I go the cheap route. At least when they're 4 and under. I take Em to her lessons and see a lot of the kids outfitted from head to toe in designer gear. Not us... we have Target brand all over. You know it is hard enough to keep the kids in shoes, pants, socks from year to year let alone jackets and boots. So, I decided that for the first few years, we'd get our snowpants and boots from Target. Ok, I know it's not cool, but up until now; they've worn their winter gear about 10 times max. Now that Em is a skier, we're going for the big time next year! This time of the year is the BEST time to shop. All the winter stuff goes on sale and you can stock up for next year so your kids don't have to wear the Target brand. By the way, snowpants and boots aren't that warm. Check out Ski n' See. They post new deals every week and if you keep up on it, you can really save a lot over time. After all, we can't afford the $150 ski pants for our kids; but keep an eye on end of the year sales and it is worth it as they are waterproof and much warmer than my generic brands; but they've worked until now.
Brennan has not been a daycare child. We've been fortunate that one parent has stayed home. For those that have boys...don't know if yours are like mine... but there is a little separation anxiety. A GREAT place to take them is to Deer Valley. Brennan has been there a few times and all experiences have been very positive. The good thing is that the child care and the ski lessons are in the same place. Once you register your child-have emergency contacts in mind and any allergies. What made me very comfortable is the security. You get an "invisible" stamp on your hand. In order to move into the child care area, your hand will be scanned and there is a person that must "buzz" you in through the door. As a parent, this makes you feel very secure.
I love the holidays! As a child we all have traditions and I've now started my own with my family. 3 years ago when Emily was just over 2, we started going to Alta on Christmas Eve. At the time, she was too little to ski, so we put her in the day care. They have a program called a Pre Ski at the Childrens Center. They will take the young ones out and walk them around in skis so they get the ski bug! It was Emilys first time in skis. Mom and Dad got to ski all day. One year later, Brennan and Emily went into day care on Christmas Eve.
This year, Emily took her first class lesson at Alta's ski school. If your child has skiied before, you will have an idea of what level they are at. It starts at level 1 and goes up from there. Since Emily has been in a couple of lessons, she is at a level 2. There are advantages and disadvantages to private lessons vs group lessons. I would suggest the first time on skis be a private lesson. Let them get the confidence they need to get up and going and the individual attention. They need to really get the hang of it. It also depends on the child. Group lessons are great once they get their confidence going and are ready to keep up with the others. For Emily, she is outgoing and likes other kids. Being around others her age is a positive thing for her..besides, I feel they are pushed a bit.
Now that the snow is hitting, time to get the kids ready to ski!! A BIG thank you to SKI' N SEE here in Utah for outfitting us in everything we'll need to have a safe and fun ski season.
As we arrive, kids are in rare form and ready to go. The hardest part with the little ones is trying to get them to put the boots on and liking the boots. After all, we all know the ski boots aren't the most comfortable boots in the world. Bren and Em were very willing to sit for a minute as their feet were measured. I learned to take the liners OUT of the boots and stick their feet in works great. You should be able to put a finger length behind the heel to get the right fit. Also, NEVER wear cotton socks...they hold moisture. If you are on vacation and can't get some ski socks, your dress socks will be OK. Polyester is OK, but cotton is the worst. So, we got some new socks for the kids so their feet will be comfortable.
I also asked "why no poles"? Well, it is better for them to learn and get their balance without them, so they don't get dependant on them to get down the hill. Hmmm, maybe that's my problem.
Since we're new at this thing and the kids are so young, height isn't as big of deal as their weight; so when you head in to rent your skis, pop them on the scale real quick. I feel comfortable in looking at their skis and seeing they are TINY!! Yea...protective Mom :)
So, what do I have to do with this ski thing? Being in the TV world for years, I've been closely associated with Ski Utah and all the Utah ski resorts. I know Utah's weather well as I've been forecasting it for 12 years. When I decided to hang up my Broadcast hat, my Mom hat came on. My "blog beat" this winter will be a journey... A journey with my 4 year old daughter and my 2 year old son in learning to ski. Myself...not a great skier. I'm your average blue slope skier. So, what's the best way to teach the little guys?