My Little Kingdom

A day in the life of me and my kingdom. Thoughts of a mother of four amazing little boys, a wife of an incredible husband and a woman trying not to forget about herself.

March 24, 2008

Ski Day

Me and my boys just arrived at Snow Basin

Cameron and boys after lunch, storm rolling in

Hudson pressed against the glass
Hudson on the gondola
Boys braving the incoming storm

I’ve never been skiing a day in my life. I’ve never even had the urge. Some might consider this a sin, living here in one of the world’s or at least nations top ski spots. Never, say never isn’t just for the big screen. Every month or so Cameron’s team at work participates in a team bonding/growth kind of thing. He always comes home from these excited to share what they talked about and the experience with me. I love hearing all about them.

One of the most recent ones was a day at a posh ski resort. He went on and on about how spectacular the resort was and how awesome the restaurant at the top of the lift was. He wanted to take us so bad, that we canned our weekend trip to St. George in hopes of finding some warmer skies. We spent the next week searching through end of season clearances and snatching up apparel. I nor the boys had any appropriate clothing to keep us warm and dry on the slopes.

Though I was excited for some adventure and to experience what he had just a week before, I had to conceal my panic. He wanted to share this with us so very much and I kept having visions of Everest whizzing uncontrollably past everyone at lightening speed unable to stop, Edison catching air and landing mid way up a fir tree, Isaac doing cartwheels head over skis down the mountain leaving a trail of knocked down skiers in his wake, the wind blowing in Hudson’s hair with his arms wrapped tightly across Cameron’s face while clinging on to the back of his dad as he chases after everyone and me spinning 360’s wildly before I face plant into a snow drift. How in the world was he going to take four first time skiers out by himself? Not that I doubted my husband, I never doubt Cameron. If he sets out to do something, by golly he does it and he does it in style and with flare exceeding expectations. I was in wonderment not doubt.

The end of the week came and the morning of, the car is packed the boys are ready, I’m dressed and Cameron comments on how good I look. I reply, ‘That’s my plan, to look like I know what I’m doing, then I just avoid the slopes and talking to anyone and no one will ever have to know’. It was a really nice drive and then we arrived at the top of a mountain that I had never met. Snow like you wouldn’t believe. A skier’s heaven. We piled out and headed to the heart of the resort. While Cameron went inside to get the passes we huddled together and soaked it all in. Just then a guy comes up wearing a rescue vest and has a litter of golden retriever pups. Apparently he and his kids were training the dogs for search and rescue. Hudson was ecstatic. Snow Buddies is his new favorite movie and if all we did that day was see the ‘snow buddies’ as he called them he would’ve been just fine. He couldn’t take his eyes off of them. But alas, it was our turn to get on the ski lift and up we went to the top of the mountain. It was amazing, it was beautiful, it was breath taking, it was really really high. We shared the gondola with a veteran ski couple. They knew the mountain inside and out. My plan was unraveling as we the conversation deeped. But they were a delightful pair with many fascinating experiences to share. The restaurant at the top was cozy and warm and huge. It was every thing you’d picture a resort lodge being. Beautiful wood and rock, rustic, huge fireplaces, panoramic views and the food was divine. If we called it a day after that I would’ve been just fine. It was as though we were in a completely different world up there, that we had left ours behind down below. It was just us and the mountain.

Tummies full, back down the mountain we went as we watched the skiers and snowboarders below us. Hudson with his nose pressed against the glass. Storm clouds began to roll in over the mountain. A sense of urgency began to set in as the sky grew tumultuous. Trying to organize everyone and get the skiing started. We decided I’d stay at the ‘base’ of the bunny hill with the boys while Cameron took one at a time up, we hadn’t figured out how I’d get my turn we’d figure that out when the time came. Cameron and Hudson headed out first. There was a conveyer belt that took them to the top of the bunny hill and then they would ski down. While they were gearing up and making their way up I decided to bring the boys out to watch. There was a covered area with chairs and some snow the boys could play in. The other three boys are playing around on their skis while I’m lugging all the boots, skis, what have ya’s from one side of the building to the other and it starts snowing. Not thinking much of it, it’s a ski resort, it’s the top of a mountain, it’s the middle of winter. But the sky kept getting darker and darker and the snow heavier and thicker as it came alive. We huddled behind a huge pillar of stone under an outside covered area. It didn’t provide much protection.

Cameron and Hudson finally made it back down the mountain and Hudson was laughing the whole way down. Edison’s turn is next but he had taken off his beanie and some protective layers so he’s a little wet and very cold. At this point he’s done and let’s Isaac go in his place. Just as Isaac geared up they shut down the bunny hill, the conveyer belt is turned off due to the heavy snow, so they try the next hill up. They hop on the mini lift and up, up and away they go. Cameron and I have our walkie talkies and have been communicating that way. He gets to the top and tells me they’re shutting down that lift as well, that he might have time to take Everest if they’re fast. The snow keeps coming, Hudson is stiff as a board in his snow gear lounged back in a patio chair and is falling asleep but those pillow sized snowflakes keep landing on his eye lashes. Isaac and Cameron zoom down the hill we swap out Isaac for Everest and off they go. At this point the snow is blinding while the wind has really picked up and Edison is screaming ‘I wanna go home, I hate this, I never wanna ski again’. I scoop them up and head for the entrance to the lodge, kids in tow. I abandon all the equipment put Hudson on one hip grab Edison’s hand and keep calling for Isaac to stay close. We’re doubled over trying to keep the snow out of our faces which doesn’t help, cause we still can’t see where we are going. I see the entrance and pull the kids through the large wooden doors. I headed straight for the oversized fireplace and sat the boys down on the hearth. Peeled off their layers and let them snuggle up in the warmth and glow of the crackling fire. Ah, that’s better. While thawing out I look around, the lodge is packed, everyone is finding refuge from the storm and I hear they’ve shut all lifts down and people are still waiting for friends and family to come down off the mountain. The boys are beginning to get sleepy and are mesmerized by the fire dancing beside them. Cameron and Everest make their way in and they too warm up by the fireplace before Cameron braves the storm to gather up all the abandoned equipment.

While making a plan for our next move a gentleman came to stir up the fire and began talking to the boys, he then introduced us to the nice elderly gentleman sitting in an oversized overstuffed chair next to us. He just so happened to be the man who envisioned, built and owned the ski resort. It was pretty cool and we told him how much we loved the resort and thanked him. Then we gathered up the boys and with an arm across our face, heads bent and a boy or two on board we made our way to the car. Where we peeled off outer layers, cranked up the heat and dove into the stash of snacks while Cameron braved it back to the lodge to collect the items left behind.

It was crazy weather. A real blizzard, I’ve loved having 4 wheel drive but never as much as I did today. We slowly made our way down the mountain lined with cars stranded or stuck on the slick icy roads. I never made it out onto the slopes, but I did get some good use out of my attire and at least looked like I knew what I was doing for a day.

And that was our first day of skiing ever, would I do it again. Surprisingly enough Yes, as long as I get to eat at the restaurant at the top of the mountain.

March 17, 2008

A Day in the Life

Turned Tables
One afternoon Everest was making a snack for him, his brothers and their friend. He was slicing apples when the phone rang on the counter next to him. He called out to me, “Can you get that? My hands are all juicy?” His friend started giggling, ‘you just asked your mom to get the phone’.

Modern Conveniences
Edison & Isaac were showing granny the new washer/dryer. When asked if they knew how to use it
they replied, “you put the oil in and push play”.

I Cannot Lie
Edison: I smell donuts
Everest: That’s my bum

Tech Support
Cameron closed his laptop, set it on the floor and ran upstairs for something.
Seconds later I entered the room to find Hudson laying on his side nose to nose with the computer. One little finger ever so carefully lifting it just enough to peer inside with one eye. He heard me and turned around.
Hudson: What? I’m not doing anything, I’m just checking to see if it’s not working.
Mom grinning.
Hudson: Go upstairs, don’t look at me.
(BTW Hudson is very tech savvy.)

Turning Back Time
Edison: Mom come here, I have to show you something, it’s really strange!
I follow him down stairs and Edison and Isaac are standing in the kitchen.
They exclaim simultaneously : “It’s going backwards, time is going backwards!
I was using the kitchen timer on the microwave for some St. Patrick’s Day cupcakes.
They exclaim simultaneously with jaws dropped, eyes bulged, a happy dance and a loud cheer.

Hudson’s Accent
De instead of the: Open de door.
Mine for my: Can’t find mine binky.
I bonked mine head on de door.

Being silly I asked Who likes peanut butter sandwiches?
Hudson: I do, I do, I always like peanut butter, ever since when I was born I liked them my whole life.

March 14, 2008

Last One Up Is A...

It’s always a good idea to be the first one up. That’s hard to do in a house of early risers. And with four still very young boys odds are I’m up at least once every night, soothing fears, chasing away bad dreams, rubbing leg cramps or a needy back, tucking in for the umpteenth time, tending to an upset stomach or a zillion other reasons a mother is needed in the middle of the night. So those wee hours of the morning are when I finally hit my REM sleep and it’s oh so hard to get up at 5, 6 or even 7 am. I have deeply considered just staying up when I’m crawling back into bed and the clock is starring at me with a big 4 a.m. Think of the head start I’d get, think of all the things I could get done and then think of all the time I’d have during the day to get other things done, I really should just stay up. And about this time I’ve drifted back to sleep. And suddenly to my alarm it’s 7a.m. and I’m sprinting out of bed and racing through the house getting up any other late starters. Do I dare take time to jump in the shower? There’s breakfast to fix, there’s lunches to be made, school packs to be checked, boys to be dressed, combed and brushed…. Nope, my shower will have to wait, now why didn’t I get up at 4 a.m.?
By now Cameron’s been up for hours getting a jump on his day while Edison and Everest are usually up as well watching PBS cartoons. They must get a kick out of their mom tearing through the house like a mad woman on a torpedo.

This particular morning, the same happened, Hudson awoke upset from a dream and I went in to comfort him. He ended up in our bed and I stared at the clock staring back at me, 3:30a.m. I might as well just get up, I’m somewhat alert and when my alarm goes off at 6 I won’t be. Wouldn’t it be nice to get a jumpstart on my day rather than the day getting a jumpstart on me? And then I found myself drifting off in slumber while Cameron is stirring, itching to get a head start. When my alarm did go off, I fumbled around to turn it off and managed to squander away another 30 minutes of sleep when I finally yanked myself out from under the covers and into the shower. I can’t wake up without a shower, a long hot shower, a really long hot shower.

Upon emerging from the bathroom I was met head on by Edison who had been up since 5am. Which is no surprise Edison usually beats me to the day. He met me with a pleased grin of accomplishment as he held up high his creation. “Mom, look what I made. I got up at 5 and have been making them for my animals.” There in his hand was a small stuffed animal, a bunny rabbit to be precise. And on the bunny was a small white sweater. The bunny was wearing a sweater, made out of socks! He had been cutting up his socks into clothes for his dear stuffed animals.

I didn’t even flinch even though inside I was thinking “socks!!!”, I couldn’t bare to see his enthusiasm, hard work and pride shattered to pieces. I smiled with amazement and in fact I was rather very impressed with his little creations. How carefully they had each been thought through, fitted, cut and then carefully clothed on the animals. He had been very resourceful and even well eco friendly in recycling his socks. How could I be mad? I mean after all, the little bunny even had a matching beanie to keep his head warm.