After a couple false starts, ski team Curtis is coming together

Ski vacation was fun! Even if the effort required to travel and sleep somewhere new is almost enough to make me never leave home again. And yes our trip was over a week ago.

It was our first time traveling with 2 kids and our first ski trip in 3 years without any vomit. For 5 hours I rode in the third row of our SUV or however long it takes to lose feeling in the lower half of your body.

But it was worth it. We picked up my mom on the way. Not only is it helpful to outnumber the little people, but she did some major childcare. I skied every morning and got a couple nights out with Captain.

Captain and I had quality time with BB and so did the rest of the adults in the hot tub.

BB had the option of sleeping in the bed or sleeping on the couch cushions on the floor. They were very nice cushions. BB chose the floor. She also had the choice of underwear or a pull-up for bed. That choice was a mistake. Sorry couch cushions.

I booked ski-in ski-out because I knew that’s the only way I’d get a decent chunk of skiing time in before RB needed to nurse.

She’s not taking a bottle. She’s got nothing against it. She’ll hold it, play with it, chew on it. Just about anything to it, except drink from it.

A month ago I was miffed, but at this point if she’s happy ish, she can hold out as long as she wants, I’ll be at book club.

It was my first time at Stowe and my first time at our hotel. I slip on my comfy, well-worn slippers and head down to ski check. By well-worn, I mean I’ve been wearing them all day every day for over a year and they’re dead.

I see everyone leaving their shoes under the benches. I spot the same pair of slippers as mine. I’d hate to be left with someone else’s well-loved pair. I check my slippers so they’re safe with the ski-check guys.

I hit the slopes. First time skiing in 2 years and minimal post-partum core strength. It was weird and great.

By the end of the trip BB could even take a couple runs with me. And by couple runs I mean we went up the magic carpet and down the slightest incline while Captain walked with us.

We signed BB up for one day of ski school with the idea that if she liked it she could do more. She loved it! They skied, came in for cocoa, skied, came in for lunch, skied, came in for cocoa, skied, came in for pick-up.

I asked BB about her day. She compared it to her regular school, so she found the routine a little perplexing. She said,

“It was a different kind of day. We just kept skiing.”

Outfitting one small child for the snow, one time a day, feels like all I can manage, never mind multiple small children in and out all day long. Bless those instructors.

I return to ski check and hand over my boots. The guy says,

“Have a nice afternoon!”

“Thank you, I just need to grab my slippers from you.”

He returns with those bad boys and remarks,

“Good thing you checked these.”

Back home I tuck BB into her bed. She sighs,

“It’s nice to not be sleeping on the floor anymore.”

As if we’d been roughing it.

Although I agree, it is nice to be home.

Another test of my love for a ski trip

Back from a successful week in Smuggler’s Notch, VT. By the skin of our teeth.

Last year in Killington we all got the Norovirus, there was vomit everywhere. It was the WORST. And the chances of that happening again? Well it didn’t even cross my mind.

Our drive up was smooth. BB slept, Captain and I chatted. We only made 2 wrong turns. We pull into the parking lot at central registration. My plan is to run in, get the info, then we’ll drive to our room. No need to get BB out and back into the car for this.

We picked Smuggler’s Notch because it’s supposed to be really good for kids, also it’s the only ski school I could find willing to put an unpotty-trained 2-year-old on skis.

I join a line of dads checking in. Some of them may have left another dad in the car, but based on the number of dads in line, there had to be a fair number of moms in the cars with the kids.

I contemplate this dynamic. We pulled in. I got out. I didn’t put it up for discussion.

I return to the car. I open the door. I’m not in the car yet, Captain and I are starting to talk. He peers into the rear view mirror.

“Uh, she’s throwing up!”

I yank her door open. I stare. She throws up more. I stare at her covered in vomit. The carseat full of vomit. Her security bunnies soaked in vomit. UGH. We decide to drive the 2 minutes to our room and deal with it there.

It’s 6pm. We unpack. Get clean clothes on. BB is interested in a snack. She seems to feel fine. I toss it up to being in the car too long and maybe car sickness? Although that’s never happened before and the car had been stationary for 10 minutes.

There’s laundry in the building. We’re ready to toss everything in: car-seat liner, clothes, blankets and bunnies.

BB shouts,

“Don’t wash my bunnies!”

Captain tells her,

“We have to.”

She starts to freak out. I say,

“Wait! BB, I want you to smell your bunny.”

I hand it to her. She doesn’t smell it.

“I need you to take a really big smell.”

She does. Her whole face puckers. She pushes the bunny at me,

“Wash it!”

That’s what I thought.

We put everything in the wash. It’s high-efficiency meaning it’s going to take 2 hours. At this point that’ll be 9pm. Then everything still needs to go in the dryer. Will BB fall asleep without her bunnies? We’re about to find out. We head to dinner.

BB does not fall asleep without her bunnies. Captain spends a fair amount of time in the shower cleaning the plastic frame of the car seat. We’re all up until after 10pm.

It was silly of me to think she’d sleep any later than her normal 7am. She’s up and chugging water. I don’t think anything of it. Then she’s puking again.

We get cleaned up. She pukes again. We have a small respite, maybe one TV show worth. She’s hungry. I let her have a little applesauce. She pukes again. We manage to go an hour with nothing. We contemplate going to the restaurant for breakfast. We get our coats on. She pukes again. We take our coats off.

Is it really possible that we’re going to have another ski vacation like this? I may never ski again.

And if I thought a 1-year-old puking was tough, BB is proving that a 2-year-old is far worse. She is now capable of puking into a trash can, but has decided that she would rather not and is managing to get it on as many clothes and surfaces as possible.

I feel like I might lose my mind. I also don’t want all of us to get it like last time, so I’m washing my hands every other thing I do.

Then she naps. Then she feels fine. She wants to eat. I’m rationing out food. She’s angry with me and I feel terrible, but if I let her have her way she’d eat 2 giant pancakes and that sure doesn’t seem like a good idea. With half a pancake in her tummy and the promise of more later we head to the FunZone.

There’s a bouncy house, but I don’t give it a second thought. BB doesn’t really like those. She heads straight for the bouncy house and Captain starts helping her in. I offer,

“I don’t think this is a good idea.”

I feel 99% sure we’re about to leave this bouncy house covered in vomit.

We don’t. We do cancel BB’s first day in ski school. Not taking any chances. She starts after a day and a half of being puke free. Captain and I drop her off together. I’m used to dropping her off at the Y, but Captain has never done that. I’m reassuring him as much as I’m reassuring BB. Everyone is going to have fun and be ok.

They give us a link for an app we can download to access photos of BB throughout her day. We drop her off at 9am and are planning to pick her up at 1pm.

The app is the best and worst thing. At 9:40am I shout at Captain,

“There’s an update! She had a snack!”

“Oh yeah?”

“A nutrigrain bar.”

9:45am:

“Another update! Wet diaper.”

10:15am:

A photo of her doing arts and crafts.

I am spending my relatively expensive child-free morning compulsively checking this app. I feel like an idiot.

11:15am, I tell Captain,

“There haven’t been any updates, they must be skiing.”

And ski she did, if by ski you mean she wore boots and skis and tolerated someone sliding her down a microscopic incline, all for a video for Mom and Dad and so someday BB can breezily say ‘oh yeah I’ve been skiing since I was two.’ Or so she can say, ‘Oh I skied once when I was two and never again.’

We were very happy to see each other and she was exhausted. I ask her,

“What did you think? How was your day?”

“Good.”

“Did you have a favorite part?”

“When the lady with the flower pants gave me more ketchup at lunch.”

For the rest of vacation BB continued to feel fine; we were all fine. No one was sick. I have no idea what all that was, but the car seat is the cleanest it’s been since we took it out of the box.

Until next year.

Version 2Version 2

Too much beer? Just go easy on the carrots

The longer Baby Bop is around, the harder it is for me to remember that I had a childless life for 34 years. I know it happened, but it gets fuzzier every day. One thing I used to do was ski. I’m reminded of that every time Baby Bop and I sit on the toilet and stare at my skis.

Two weeks ago I had an amazing ski weekend with my friends. Baby Bop was there because I need her to empty my boobs, but other than that, my mom and Captain did everything baby.

Even sitting on the chairlift was pleasant. Sometimes I was with my friends and sometimes with random people. One lift ride I got on with two middle-aged women. And as I’m writing this, I googled “middle-aged” to see if I made three, but it looks like I’m off the hook for a minute.

The women were chatting,

“I love my farm share, I just get way too much of the same vegetables and I don’t know what to do with it all. My kids sure aren’t eating it.”

Her friend nods. Farm-share lady continues,

“And there are always so many potatoes and I need to stay away from root vegetables.”

“Why?”

“Root vegetables have a lot of sugar.”

“I didn’t realize that.”

“Yeah, sweet potatoes? Carrots too.”

“Huh.”

“The other problem is that I have a full share and some people have half shares and the other day they gave me a half share.”

Didn’t you just say you have too many vegetables? I wipe my snotty nose on my mitten. Is this my future?

A few ski runs later I get on the lift with two teenage boys, maybe early twenties, but it’s getting hard to tell as I approach middle age.

One boy pops open a beer. The other one declares,

“Running into that tree hurt.”

His friend hands him the beer. He adds,

“I’m so drunk.”

Skiing, trees and alcohol. One of these things is not good with the others. Yes, Sesame Street is a part of my life now.

The ring leader with the beer offers empathy,

“Well I was so drunk last night I don’t even remember being on the lazy river.”

I head back to the hotel. I like my beer in the hot tub with Captain. I look at Captain. It’s like old times. This is how Baby Bop got started. Then we head to dinner the two of us. I feel like a new woman.

Captain tells me,

“You’re back!”

Yes, there’s still hope that I exist. I’m living somewhere between chugging beers on the chairlift and swearing off sweet potatoes.

These all seemed relevant.