On a Lighter Side

Ava and I took advantage of free lift tickets and sunshine this past Sunday. When my Mom offered to treat in turn for a few snowboarding lessons, I didn't hesitate to take her up on the offer. You never turn down free lift tickets. Never.

A long time ago in a galaxy far away, I was a young thing that acted on flights of fancy (as most eighteen-year-olds do) and when my best friend decided to move to Tahoe, I followed her. Only months into my return from my year as an exchange student, I was desperate to escape the smallness of Northern Michigan. How could I have resisted the promise of mountains and the care-free lifestyle of a ski town? For the next few years, I spent the life of a ski instructor and I got pretty good at it. I made the effort to learn from the old pros and I worked at getting the different levels of certification. Hundreds of hours were spent in my ski boots, but I loved every moment of it. The sunshine, the snow, the mountains and the exhilaration of tearing down the slopes at breakneck speeds.

And then when Ava came into the picture, it was time to grow up. The six month cycle of finding a new job every summer while you waited for the winter was not a lifestyle I wanted for my family. Even if Rick and I had an equal love for the hills. So we waited. Rick and I would still go to our local hill and have fun, but for the past few years we have been waiting for the day Ava would join us.

French Fries... Pizza!

Sunday that day finally came. And beaming mom pride aside, Ava has a natural knack for skiing. Her little legs popped right into the snowplow position and she was rearing to go. I can't tell you how many lessons I've had where it would take a kid all day and a bazillion progression exercises to be able to get their legs to go where they wanted them to go. Thank you natural athletic ability!

First Trip Down


I know our ski season is coming to a close, but you can bet that Ava will be back out there in full force next year. She will be a little ripper, if I know my girl. A mini speed demon. Only downside is that I will have to go back to skis for awhile, and oh how I will miss my comfy snowboard boots!

Ava Learns to Ski from Amber Wendels on Vimeo.


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