Ronan, already armed for a snowball fight
February of last year we vacationed at Lake Tahoe and were greeted by an over-abundance of harsh, snowy, cold weather. This year the conditions couldn't have been more different - we had bright, sunny skies, minimal snow (for Tahoe), and temperatures in the mid-sixties during the days.
The men on a chairlift
We timed our trip to meet some old friends (who also have a daughter who is a few months younger than Nieve) that were traveling to California from the east coast. Ronan and Nieve had plenty of friendly faces to accompany the warm weather - all of the kids had a blast.
I wish I had the same natural feel for skiing that Ronan does
Nieve and Ronan seemed to enjoy different activities during the trip. Ronan was able to try skiing (for a second time - last year he got about an hour's worth of skiing in during the blizzard conditions) and seems to be a natural on the boards. He seems to have an intuitive feel for the snow and with a minimal amount of coaching he made remarkable progress in just a couple of hours. I was both amazed and afraid at how quickly he picked it up - it's impressive how easy it is for children to learn new skills that we adults find challenging. I was afraid because by the end of the second day he skied with confidence and speed yet still had the judgement of an almost-four-year-old.
Hard at work constructing a snowman
Ronan also seemed to enjoy sledding and even 'surfed' the toboggan one afternoon (once with a nice little wipeout at the end of the run). He also loved building a mostly-recognizable snowman with Mom.
This is what coastal boys do when they have the opportunity...
Snowball fights were also high on his "like" list, but his hands-down favorite thing to do with snow was to eat it. Not skiing, not sledding, not snowball fights - Ronan went crazy for eating snow. Baffling, but true.
An all too common event - Ronan eating snow at the slopes
No matter where we were, if there was snow, Ronan was eating it
Nieve, on the other hand, barely tried eating snow (she's not a fan of the cold) and did not get a chance to ski (she's too young). However she did get some sledding in and that was one of a very few snow activities that put a big smile on her face.
It's always fun to hitch a tow to the top
Not as crazy as Ronan but at least Nieve enjoyed it
Nieve trying out a faster driver for her sled
Other than that, she wanted nothing to do with the snow or cold - her favorite part was visiting our friends who were staying next door at their Aunt & Uncle's beautiful house. Nieve loved playing their baby grand piano, hugging their amazing pug Cisco, and socializing with new faces. Another Nieve highlight was trying Nutella for the first time, reading stories by a roaring fire, and enjoying hot chocolate during the evening.
Yes, that's Nieve putting Nutella in her belly button
In all it was a great trip - we're already starting to plan our snowy getaway for next year!