Pulling the Plug.
Generally speaking, skiing gets the grumpies out of this family.
The kids get along better on the slopes than they do in just about any other setting. They are four years apart, and most of the time play beautifully together…until they don’t. And I have had entire mornings of bickering fall away as the ski boots get buckled.
I was counting on this as my non-observant Christmas present. Except that I completely misinterpreted the source of the grumpies. Little Guy was in a thrilled mood…every turn on Candy Land brought bigger grins, worshipful ones aimed mostly at his brother. Little Guy can get pretty frustrated when he can’t make a turn or when he falls, but the minute the turns fall into place and he can show his big brother that he, too, is a skier, they bask in the glow of brotherly love.
Still, Big Guy, saddled with the responsibility of skiing lesser terrain for his little bro’s sake, couldn’t hack it for a second day in a row. And he grumped and grumbled his way through lunch. While praising Little Guy for his Mad Skillz (something he boasts of to all who will listen, in exactly those terms) and his stellar behavior (stark contrast to the previous day’s shin-kicks!) we couldn’t cajole the big brother into a better mood.
So, we pulled the plug, explaining calmly that bad ‘tude ruins it for everyone.
I handed out consolation prizes of Swedish Fish (I now always have a stash in the cargo pocket of those ADORABLE ski pants of mine, so hit me up when you see me), and we headed for the plaza to check our skis and await pickup by Ski Dad who had gone to collect the car.
Meanwhile, the kids did what I love—bonded a little to comfort each other over leaving the hill early.