Tuesday, January 1, 2013

New Years 2013 - Counting my Lucky Stars

Happy New Year Everyone!  I can't think of a better topic write about than the magical memories we created to start off 2013.  Especially because my my blog was originally started a few years ago to have a place to write about my love of travelling, adventures as a professional running coach, endurance athlete and Mom   It isn't always easy to balance these out but this New Years was a perfect example of the JOY that comes into my life when I do.

This year we planned a trip to the Methow Valley for New Years.  We rented a house in Winthrop, WA where we shared it with 3 other families/close friends for 4 days and 3 nights.  There was 14 of us in total and it was the perfect blend of kids running around happily playing... non-stop eating and well, at $7 a bottle... you could say we enjoyed a daily dose of vinotherapy after a hard day on the Nordic skis!

We first discovered Winthrop in 2010 when I brought a group of athletes from P.A.C.E. down to participate in a Rainshadow Running event at Sun Mountain.  Since then, we have returned 3 to 4 times per year to road ride, climb, hike and trail run.  This trip, however, marked our first winter vacation to the Methow Valley.

Our first stop was at Blue Star Roasters in Twisp.  Trent orders over 20 bags of coffee every time we go and is now on a first name basis with the staff.  I can't complain... I am a bit of a princess who gets coffee in bed every morning - so I fully support the pit stop.

We then carried on to our rental home where we hooked up with our friends who had all left Kelowna on different schedules.  We ordered pizza from East Side 20 Pizza and just hunkered down for the night.  We were all pretty excited to hit the kip early as we all couldn't wait to get on the skis the next day.

Those of you with families can appreciate the scheduling that goes into getting a workout in, getting the kids a workout in, getting a workout as a family and just getting it all balanced out.  The boys took the morning shift and they skied from Winthrop to Mazama on the MCT (Methow Community Trail). We drove to Mazama and took the kids skiing from there.  This way we could meet the boys at the end of their ski, have a coffee and piece of pie before driving or skiing back. 

The next day I got out in the morning with the girls for a skate ski.  We hit the MCT this time and did a 22km skate ski before heading back to do the trade off.  The boys took the morning shift and got the kids out for a skate ski too.

We spent New Years around a fire, huge table filled with food, drink and close friends.  We had friends from KTown were just staying down the street so they joined us for appies, dinner and if you can imagine - the dance party we improvised with kids.  We danced for almost 3 hrs.  What started off as freeze dance soon turned into a full-on New Year's shake your booty show-down.  We even got to take in the fireworks from the deck of our rental - it was amazing!

On New Years day, Trent, Carter and I went for a classic ski with our friends on one of the most beautiful Nordic trails I have ever had the pleasure to ski on.  It was a gradual climb along this ridge with views of the valley, mountains and we had the most incredible blue bird day to take it all in.   It simply summarized so many of the things I am grateful for from 2012 and that I can only hope to have more of in 2013.  Friends/family, good health to enjoy doing the activities that I love and travel - the gift of exploration... to be in new places.  To see new things.  To have new experiences.  To fill my life with more memories.  Trent and I made a point to speak often of how lucky we feel to have these things in our life in 2012.  I am not one for resolutions - but I do plan on carrying that acknowledgement forward into 2013 and to continue to count my lucky stars.

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