Updated: Dec 3, 2020
This week marks my 1st weekend stay back to my father-in-law’s family ski chalet since 2015. I felt like I was walking into a second home. All sorts of emotions hit me. Some almost making me cry. Most of the memories are warm and fuzzy. All except for one… that is the one that makes me sad and emotional. (Side note: Some of you know I spent a day skiing at Crabbe with hubby, Nadia and bestie back in 201… we didn’t stay at the Chalet that time).
The family ski chalet is a special place for my family and I. The first time we stayed here I was 8 months pregnant with our second child, and our first child was around 19 months old.
The first 12 winters or so of our children’s lives were spent here at Crabbe Mountain, the four of us with Nannie and Grampy.
Learning to ski.
Our kids started to ski at the young age of 3 and 5 years old. They later joined ski school while my father-in-law, who is certified as a ski instructor, taught me how to ski.
During our “learning years”, we were at Crabbe a minimum of 13 weekends a winter. Not kidding. We bought family season passes, were crazy about skiing, and wanted to get our money’s worth. For about 4 to 5 years straight, we would leave Dieppe Friday right after work, hop in the vehicle and drive straight to Crabbe. We would head back to Dieppe on Sunday around mid-afternoon, arriving home in time for supper.
We, (hubby, his Dad and I) would ski “first tracks” … head to the chalet for lunch.. head out again… break for supper… and sometimes head back out for night skiing. Night skiing is magical. If you haven’t tried it yet, you really should.
Creating family traditions.
On Saturday, our kids would attended ski school, break for lunch at the lodge with the other kids, and do a few more hours in the afternoon. We would then accompany them back to the chalet where they would hang out with Nannie, chat, play Wii, color, and play with their toys.
A special memory that comes to mind is Nannie proudly making “Nannie’s Breakfast McMuffins” every morning. She would make them with raisin English Muffins. The kids would ask for some every morning we were there. They thought it was the best breakfast ever. In truth, the adults would ask for some also… we all asked for some. Yummmm! (This is before I became vegan, I had this for breakfast every weekend at we were at the Ski Chalet.)
Our evenings were traditionally spent hanging out in front of the big screen TV with a warm wood fire going. We would enjoy a hot chocolate or glass of wine, some snacks and watch Merlin before crawling into our comfy beds.
We spent many Christmases at the ski-chalet. It was our second home for 15 years. Then life changed, kids got older, and as of 2015, we visited he chalet less and less often. Although hubby kept the tradition of holding the bi-annual “boys’ weekend” at the chalet, he hasn’t been out on the slops much at all.
Life’s constant is change.
However, this year, winter 2019-2020, hubby has made the commitment to go skiing every two weeks. This is our daughter (almost 18yrs old) and I’s first weekend joining him. Our son (now 19) will also join us from time to time. The sad part is that Nannie will not be joining us at the family ski chalet as often if at all, nor will Grampy… as I mentioned, life changes.
Nannie is dealing with Parkinson and is happier and more comfortable at home. This is what makes me emotional. I will be ok by the end of this weekend. It’s just that it’s my first weekend back since our last family weekend spent here with Nannie and Grampy back in 2015.
We make sure to visit my in-laws at their house as often as we can. We haven’t lost that bond and never will. We still spend evenings in front of a big screen TV, chatting up a storm and laughing. Our kids are older. We will soon be empty nesters. But that connection between the 6 of us will always remain. It is too important to remain un-nurtured.
Cheers to the future.
May the skiing bug bite again. May the creating of memories continue. May the family connections remain strong.
Yours in health ~ Nancy Shimmy