We returned with no major injuries, which was high on my priority list.  But, we also returned with pretty gigantic smiles and very happy memories.

We planned the trip with two other families, resulting in a total of 8 kids-the oldest being 10-all living in one house for the week. Yes, at this point in our journey we make decisions like this because we are insane.  I’ve accepted this fact, and will continue to make similiar decisions until my children are grown and my brain chemicals return to normal levels.  On one level I recognize the crazy, but on another level I bask in the fun.

I think the temperatures started dropping as soon as we left Decatur City Limits, and the kids started their search for snow.  It didn’t really appear until we were actually in the mountains, but they figured if it was cold, the snow was bound to show up.  This was a third ski trip for my daughter, having tagged along with her grandparents a few times, but both boys didn’t really have any idea what to expect.  I mean, they expected snow, but other than that I don’t think they really understood the magnitude of the experience ahead of them.

I’ve mentioned our love of road trips before, and because of that we have become experts.  Give our kids a pillow, a blanket, and a few snacks, and they won’t complain about being in the car for hours, even days.  Add in an extra hotel stay and the Scroggins Hoodlums think they’ve won the lottery.

We finally arrived, and found our “dream house” as they called it–four bedrooms, backed up against the mountains with snow in and on every surface.  Very Cozy.  That first day we took time to get our bearings, lift tickets, ski school registrations, skis, boots, poles, etc, etc, etc.  It takes a lot of stuff to send a family of five down a moutain on some skinny flat sticks.  The kids were pumped.

We woke up early to the smell of bacon and proceeded to layer up, boot up, glove up, and coat up.  I must mention again that a family of five takes a lot of stuff to make this happen.  We finally arrived, checked the boys into ski school, and set of with our oldest to remember how to ski.  It had been fifteen years for me, so I needed to reteaching.  Just a couple of falls later, I remembered the snow plow and we were good to go for the day.  To end the day, I took the boys up a small hill after ski school and watched them skid, fall, and faceplant down the mountain–even getting a “why did you pick out such slippery skiis????”  But, a MOST patient Angel of the Slopes helped my oldest boy make it down the hill a second time, and I could see promise of future success.

The second day everyone found that success.  I stayed on the easier hill with my youngest while the rest of the crew took the older kids to the bigger runs.  I tried not to think of the edge of the mountains that were everywhere, and concentrated on getting down this particular run with my youngest staying upright.  He eventually mastered the craft, even throwing in a ski jump faceplant “because he thought it looked fun.”  Wow–that kid.

So, by the last day I had three actual skiiers on my hands.  I was actually a little amazed how fast they picked it up.  I know people say that the little kids always do pick it up quickly, but I’ve taught these kids how to ride bikes and tie shoes.  They can make the easiest of tasks look like rocket science.

We were a little teary to leave that last day–to leave the neverending slumber party, the time away from chores, and the truly beautiful scenery.  But, my husband promised a quick return, and the start of a new tradition–one he had growing up that he wants to recreate for our hoodlums.  I’m a happy tagalong on that journey–hoping to develop more skills at least as quickly as the kids do.  I’m not sure I’ll be successful, but I’ll power through a few more roadtrips, ski runs, and photo opportunities to see.