Good intentions

My knee is FINALLY starting to feel better – I’d fallen right on it while wearing ski boots and it’s been stiff and sore ever since.  Once it is a bit better, I’ll start running again.  I should have taken it up before skiing but blah blah blah got in the way.  The other day, I saw this thing on how to get fit before skiing in The Week.

I am almost certainly not going to do any of these
I am almost certainly not going to do any of these

I have been told that running is BAAAAD for you (or at least your knees) and that I should be doing yoga instead.  However, yoga requires that I am available at x time on y day and whenever I’ve gone to yoga, it’s been full of people who are really, really good at it.  Bit embarrassing really.

We’ve been looking at pianos (we have space in the IoW for a real piano).  So far, we’ve seen a bunch of second hand ones at J Reid (they have a factory where they fix the old ones and make them playable), a couple that people are selling through word of mouth (so far one that plays very nicely but is quite ugly – and too small for the space – and one that looks beautiful but is so unplayable, it is basically a really stylish shelf to put picture frames) and Peregrine’s Pianos (which, it turns out, doesn’t really sell second hand pianos although they did have a nice 30 year old Yamaha that someone had traded in for something much smarter).

There are a couple of problems with this – the first is that I am not very good at playing the piano so it is a bit embarrassing when I pull out my practise book and start clunking away at a piano in a showroom to people who are FAR better than I ever will be (particularly when they demonstrate the different sounds each piano makes by expertly playing Debussy).  The second is that looking at a new £17k piano (seriously, that was the price of one of the pianos demonstrated yesterday) when you’re looking for a cheap second hand one is a bit like deciding that you want to buy a Renault Fuego then going to a Porsche showroom.  It makes everything else look a bit crappy (and there is no way we are buying a £17k piano, like, EVER).

Ski gear 2018

Yep, I know it’s Spring and we aren’t going skiing for nearly a year.  However, this is the best time to buy ski gear – places start reducing it once you get into March and I’m damned if I’m paying full price for children’s ski stuff.

So, I checked out Snow and Rock (incredibly expensive), Viking Kids (I love the stuff but it is nearly all sold out and the website is infuriating) and Muddy Puddles (which I’d originally decided was getting too expensive as their ski jackets were going for £75, a bit toppy for children’s jackets).  In the end, I put some things in the basket at Muddy Puddles and then left them there while I pondered for a few days.  Then, after getting a load of “There’s something still in your basket” emails, I came back and the jackets had been reduced.  Woohoo!  It helped that they’d also sent me a postcard with an extra 10% off.

Originally £75, I paid £40.50.
Originally £75, I paid £40.50
Originally £65, I paid £35.10
Originally £65, I paid £35.10
Originally £45, I paid £40.50
Originally £45, I paid £40.50

The jackets can double up as winter coats and, in fact, I wondered if they might not be a bit too warm – they have quite a thick, fleecy lining.  However, it may just mean that they need a thinner fleece when skiing and children don’t have as much body fat to keep them warm (my daughter in particular).

I only managed to get saloupettes for my son – the ones with braces were sold out for ages 3/4, 4/5 and 5/6 and my daughter really needs ones with braces.  I have some old ones that my son used to wear so she’ll probably be okay in those.  She would ABSOLUTELY LOVE these – but my husband would go mental if I bought them.

I need to get my son better (double glazed) ski goggles as his teacher said that the ones he has are too small for his face and will fog up when he is up the mountain.  However, that can wait until Christmas.

UPDATE: having been all pleased with myself for snagging some bargains, Muddy Puddles have sent out another email to announce further reductions.  If I’d waited until today, the coats and saloupettes would be £33.75, £29.25 and £20.25 with the extra 10% discount code (the last is a real bugger).  So next year I really will wait until the season is completely finished.

Post skiing

We’ve been back since Sunday night and I have my final load of washing in the machine.  It’s surprising how much washing needs to be done after a ski holiday … although, really, it isn’t.  I usually do a load a day so have seven days’ worth.  Plus we wear our ski gear in the day and our normal clothes in the evenings.  So twice as much washing.  It’s quite a first world problem.

Ahhhh it was so pretty
Ahhhh it was so pretty

I had Root Canal Treatment Part 2 yesterday morning and now have a stinking cold (pretty sure the two are unconnected – it’s just a bit unfortunate).  Left hand side of my face is quite sore but it will get better.

Don't you just love the alps?
Don’t you just love the alps?

 

Meribel

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Here we are in Meribel.  This blog is going to be a bit thin on posts for the next few days.  It’s our second day of skiing – on the first, I fell over and whacked my leg on one of my skis and was so shattered I felt a bit destroyed at the end.  However, today I feel pretty good.

We’ve done some good skiing, had a couple of great lunches and been to apres ski.  I’ve spotted LOTS of blonde, 16 year old girls wearing Canada Goose jackets (not fakes either – I can tell).  I was rather bemused by this but M said “Dude – they sell those in CostCo”.

The last of the children’s ski gear

Yesterday, the last two things I’d ordered for the children arrived.

Ski goggles for the girl and mittens for the boy
Ski goggles for the girl and mittens for the boy

My daughter chose the goggles herself (although there were only two colours to choose from – blue and pink).  The mittens were about 30 quid – last year, my son’s gloves were lost pinched at his ski school so this pair are going to be covered in name labels.  Do you think it would be overkill to sew in name tapes?  On the tag, not through the glove shell, obviously.

Yet more new ski gear

After my audit of the ski gear, I’ve bought some of the things on my list.

These were from VikingKids
These were from VikingKids

I ended up buying two fleeces for the boy, both from VikingKids.  They have a super annoying website but are also having a really good sale.  Problem is, you only find out something isn’t in stock when you click “add to basket” so it took a while.

The red fleece was by Reima (Finnish) and was £17.50, reduced from £28.50.  The green fleece was by Isbjorn (Swedish) and was £24.50, reduced from £44.50.  The red is slightly thicker than the green but neither are as thick as the fleeces that came inside the Muddy Puddles coats (they don’t sell the ski jackets with the zip in fleeces any more, which is a pity).  However, I’m sure they’ll be fine for skiing.  I bought them for height 122cm (age 7), which I thought would mean that he had some growing room – however, he was measured at school on Friday and is 120cm tall so I wasn’t as prudent as I’d thought.

What else did I get?  Oh yes, snow boots, more ski socks and a snood for the boy.  I didn’t bother taking a photo of those.

Winter audit

Yesterday I realised that there is only a month until half term (more or less) so I did an audit of the children’s ski gear.  I usually buy ski gear in April or May so that it is half price.  It feels rather heartbreaking to pay full price for children’s ski gear – they outgrow it in mere months.  However, if at some point I do have to pay full price, I’m sure no one’s heart will bleed for me.

Ski jackets and saloupettes
Ski jackets and saloupettes

We have both ski jackets and saloupettes in ages 2 to 3, 3 to 4, 4 to 5 and 5 to 6.    I’ve got 5 base layer sets for my daughter (ages 3 to 4 and 4 to 5 but she’ll manage) and 4 base layer sets for my son (all black so he looks like a ninja in them).  We have socks (various types but the skiing ones are size 9 to 12), gloves, mittens, hats and a pair of goggles and a snood for the girl.

Socks and gloves
Socks and gloves

So far, I think we need to get one more pair of skiing goggles for the girl and (possibly) another pair of ski gloves for the boy.  We bought a fantastic pair last year but they disappeared on the first day of ski school, which was incredibly irritating.  They were bloody labelled, too.

I find crappy gloves a bit of a false economy.  I had a good two or three years of misery until I bought a pair of leather Spyder gloves.  They’re now about 13 years old and look faded and crappy but my hands are never cold in them.

Enormous pile of base layers
Enormous pile of base layers

After school, I viciously forced my son to try on his saloupettes from last year.  He wasn’t much in the mood to try on trousers but they still fit.  So no need for either a new jacket or saloupettes.

He is going to need a new fleece – all the heavier fleeces I have are only up to age 5 and even the largest is a bit small.

Shopping list:

  • skiing goggles for the girl;
  • (possibly) new ski gloves for the boy;
  • snood for the boy;
  • three pairs of skiing socks for both children (size 6 to 9 for the girl, size 12 to 3 for the boy); and
  • a heavier fleece for the boy.