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Skiing Success (Or, The BEST Skiing Day EVER)

I really like to ski.  But the sport is truly Alex's thing.  He skied when he was a kid, swooshing down mountains in Poland.  Then he moved to Canada and swooshed down mountains in British Columbia. He did a stint as a Ski Patroller in those BC Mountains.

I was not a skier until Alex and I got together.  So he coached me on the little hills around our home town.   He was a great teacher, but I still haven't quite been able to get over a certain fear of falling, rolling down the hill and breaking something important - like my neck. I guess that's what you get for starting to ski at the age of 30.  Despite the huge difference in our skill level, we have a great time together.

When Emma came along, our skiing days ended for a few years.  No time. No energy.  Other priorities.... if you have kids there is a good chance you know what I mean.  (Although in hindsight,  I would have made more effort to get back on the hills.)

When Emma turned 5 years old and Alex decided that she was ready to learn how to ski and that he would teach her.  I was totally on-board! We'd get back out on the hills and we'd be doing a super-fun winter activity as a family.

Guess what?  We did get back out on the little hills and had a super fun time doing it!  Yup - we've been swooshing down the very little, very gentle beginner hills at our local ski club for three seasons now.  Did you catch that?  Beginner hills.  Three seasons.

A picture of confidence!
Emma is 7 years old now and to be honest, Alex and I have been getting a little bored hanging out on the beginner hill.  But we do it for Emma because we know that our job is to help her gain confidence and a love for skiing.  Pushing her to go up to the bigger hills before she was ready would not be good for any of us. The last thing we wanted was to develop fear instead of passion for this sport.   While we gently suggested more than once that we thought she was ready, we didn't nag her.  We've learned the hard way that pushing too hard, too soon is counter-productive with this kid.

Besides, I don't think her Daddy Coach was quite ready to let his baby bird fly out of a higher nest.

The coach and his best student
Until last weekend.

On Sunday, we closed our ski season on what felt like a perfect spring day. The sun was shining, it was warm and the ski hill was quiet with hardly any lineups.  As we did run after run on the beginner hill, I didn't think it was going to get any better.  But it did!

Two hours into our four hour beginner tickets, Emma declared she was ready to go on the big hill.  YES!

And a funny thing happened.  She handled the hill like a pro. She swooshed down that tougher terrain like she'd been doing it for years and ended the run with a huge smile.

Daddy and daughter, side by side, stood at the bottom of the hill and watched me descend waaayyy behind them as I carefully worked my way down, perfecting my snowplow with nearly every turn.

Yup. She showed us that her 3 seasons on the beginner hill were totally worth it and that she's a better skier than me.  We could not be prouder.

And THAT is what made our last day of this season the BEST skiing day EVER.

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