It’s three days before you head out on your big ski trip. The final texts messages are flying with questions about who’s bringing what, if meal plans have been finalized, who’s skiing when, oh, and where are we staying?

The buzz of planning for a big vacation is so exciting, but then there’s also the concern… the mountain, the accommodations, the adventures… what if it wasn’t everything I had dreamed about?! 

However, the day was finally here, we had arrived, and we were ready to hit the powder.

But little did we know that we were going to end up with more than we had bargained for on this family ski trip!

Bunk Bed Jumping

bunk-beds-at-stonegate

We checked into our resort at 8:30 pm and even though we were all tired we were so excited to check out our room, there’s nothing like opening the door to unveil your home for the weekend. The kids were beyond excited to have their own room and we loved hearing the squealing of excitement as they jumped from bed to bed and then finally claimed their beds for the week.

Holidaying with Friends

girlfriends-on-vacation

Our friends arrived about an hour later and after playtime with the kids and beverages were handed out, it was adult time. Time to chat without distraction or timelines and just catch up on life. One of the families that we do a lot of our vacationing with is actually not a family we get to see on a regular basis, it’s friends that we only see when we’re on holidays, so that uninterrupted time is so valuable in order to reconnect.

Early Mornings

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Cracking open the blinds and unveiling the landscape for the first time in the morning is so exciting, especially for those that have never been there before. The thick fog and overcast skies meant one thing, there was lots of snow to be found on the hill.

The Chaos & Clutter

ski-snowboard-gear

The chaos and clutter of getting eight people ready for the hill is an entertaining challenge to say the least. I absolutely love the buzz of the condo as kids and parents are scrambling to find things before we head out the door. The combined excitement mixed with the anxiety of “I can’t find my socks” is all part of the ski trip experience. In order to get us out the door we needed to confirm that we had:

  • 16 gloves
  • 8 balaclavas
  • 4 snowboards
  • 8 skis
  • 8 pit stops
  • 4 pocket snacks
  • 24 pieces of bribery candy
  • 3 seasons passes
  • 5 day of lift tickets
  • …and a partridge in a pear tree!

Finding “Pow Town”

girl-snowboarding

It’s not that often that your whole family gets to play in over a foot of powder. The kids loved making snow angels but were not all that sure what to do when they were sinking in the white stuff on their snowboards. My favourite moments were when my husband disappeared into the trees only to come flying out the other side, powder flying, and him yelling “Let’s Go!”

Chairlift Conversations

family-on-chairlift

With a life as busy as it is, it’s not that often that the four of us have a dedicated set of 15 minutes where we can just talk. From school projects, to talking about the environment, to “when I grow up” discussions, I absolutely love sitting back and listening to my kids little voices on the chairlift.

Hanging with my Husband

adults-snowboarding

I’ll be the first to admit that we’re bad at taking time to sit down and reconnect. We’re always off chasing work or chasing kids and when we’re not, we’re planning our next adventures. After the kids were burnt out from snowboarding, we left them with the grandparents and hit the slopes for adult playtime. While we were only out for a couple hours it was a ton of fun to hang with my husband and have some time to ourselves!

Father Daughter Time

father-and-daughter-walking-through-big-white-village

I wasn’t the only one who was happy to spend some time with my husband, my daughter was loving that Dad wasn’t at work and that she could capitalize on his time. From holding hands walking through Happy Village, to playing board games way past bedtime, these two were inseparable all weekend, which I hope is something that never changes.

Unlimited TV Time

kids-watching-ipad

There’s nothing like the feeling of your legs being burnt out, your cheeks still burning cold from the snow hitting it, and walking through a warm door ready to collapse on the closest couch (literally the best feeling in the world?) It was fun to see my kids experience that too and then shower and change into their jammies and hit the TV for what to them seemed like unlimited TV hours (which were well earned).

Embracing your Inner 8-Year-Old

kids-tubing-at-big-white

Whenever someone hands you a tube at the top of the hill and says “spin or no spin” the answer should always be “spin!” (why they give an option is beyond me). Whipping down the hill with the forest spinning by you as you laugh and recall days of being on a tire swing are priceless!

Adventure Buddies

women-in-snow

While my kids got to play with their friends on the slopes, I enjoyed being able to play with my friends too. From racing down the hill, to going on a snowshoe tour with my friends (and even taking Nana on her first tour), having friends who are willing to say yes to adventures are the best types of friends to have.

Speaking of Best Friends to Have…

kids-playing-foosball

My nine year old yells to the four year old, “go pee” as he was laughing so hard we knew an accident was imminent. Hearing the roaring giggles from the other room was a parenting win, knowing our littles were having just as much fun playing with their friends as we were with ours.

Playing Together on the Ice

skating-on-outdoor-rink

A cliche Canadian experience and yet still magical in every sense… playing a game of pick up hockey was fun for everyone. The Dads loved whipping around on the ice, playing pass with one another and showing off moves from their younger years. Little skaters loved looking up to a rink full of friends and playing everything from tag to hockey to push and pull games. Even though I’m the furthest thing from a hockey fan, this experience was pretty amazing.

woman-with-frozen-snow-hair

The reality is that when you come to Big White you’re here for the snow, but what you get is so much more. When you’re tripping over kids in the hallway or chasing them down the hill, or hanging with your friends in the hot tub late into the night, the relationships that are formed when on ski weekends are some of the best family memories that one could ever ask for.

So we came for the snow, but what we got was so much more.

Want to know more about our trip to Big White? Want some tips and tricks to help make the most out of your visit? Check out our blog about The Essential 7 S’s of a Big White Family Vacation!

Looking for another great winter family destination? Make sure you check out Manning Park Resort!

Planning a ski road trip? We’ve got the list of the Best Family Ski Resorts in BC!