How a Christmas trip to Lake Tahoe changed our life

How a Christmas trip to Lake Tahoe changed our life

I love to travel.  But not at Christmas.  That’s always been my modus operandi.  Throughout the year there was no such thing as too much travel.  But at Christmas I wanted to be home.  I wanted to be home for the parties and to enjoy all the trappings of the season.  But a few years ago Monica’s parents wanted to take everyone on a trip for Christmas.  For me the worst part was that they wanted to take us to Lake Tahoe.  To ski.  And I didn’t know how to ski.

Today our family lives in Lake Tahoe.  I’m an avid skier–I’ll probably spend 60+ days on the slopes this year and Monica will pretty much keep pace.  I’m a Sprint Snow Squad blogger for Vail Resorts where I write about the life of a ski bum in Lake Tahoe.  We’re getting both of our kids skis for Christmas.  I mean, we are hoping that Santa brings our kids skis for Christmas.


The phrase “life-changing” is vastly overused.  I’ll admit I probably overuse it myself.  But I think life-changing is a pretty accurate way to describe that family Christmas trip to Lake Tahoe.  I went on that trip begrudgingly.  There was no kicking and screaming, but I really would have been happier had we stayed home that Christmas and taken a trip to Hawaii after New Years.

That Christmas trip serves as a constant reminder to me of what can happen when we embrace life as it comes at us.  Little serendipitous moments are all around us if we’ll only embrace them. Now let me be clear about my plight.  I mean c’mon.  There are worst situations a person could find himself in than having someone want to give them a ski trip for Christmas.

I also want to tell you what amazed me when we arrived at Heavenly Village in Lake Tahoe.  Would you believe they celebrate Christmas in Lake Tahoe just like we did in Santa Barbara?  There were Christmas trees.  There was Christmas music.  There were decorations everywhere.  The cinema was playing the same Christmas movies our cinema in Santa Barbara was playing.  It was still Christmas.  Just a different setting.  Yesterday I shared what I love about being home at Christmas.  There are certain things that are unique to home.  But had I insisted on staying home to enjoy our Dickens Village I may have never found that I love to ski.

What are you missing out on?

How have routines and traditions boxed you in?  Have you convinced yourself (like I did about skiing) that there are things you don’t know how to do and you’ll never know how to do them?  Why do we adults think think that way?

Where are you spending this Christmas?  Where will you spend next Christmas?

Want to know what it’s like to learn to ski as an adult?  Check out my dispatch for the Snow Squad: It’s never to late to learn to ski.  It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3.

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  • Like you, we’ll be spending this Christmas on a ski mountain, which happens to be where we live. Unlike you however, I really don’t like skiing. Two of my three kids love it though, so they’re quite happy we’re staying home for once.
    Hope your Christmas is fantastic, and that your kids enjoy whatever it is Santa brings them.

    • Thanks, Steve. We had a great Christmas here. Santa brought the kids skis and we look forward to lots of great times as a family throughout this winter season and beyond!

  • Pingback: How a Christmas trip to Tahoe changed my life | Tahoe Ski Bum()

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