Tuesday, August 31, 2010

a little hip on a hip trip to the snow...

With a good dump of snow expected to arrive today (well its pouring with rain down here), its just perfect for that quick trip up to the mountains for the weekend. So here we are...our final ski reviewer for now. Veronica and her family recently took advantage of the good conditions and headed up to Mount Buller, Victoria, Australia, for a long weekend. Have a read below...a rather eventful weekend up in the snow, just proving that you do need to be prepared for the unexpected ie don't expect your child to love it straight away, and make sure you book a child friendly place!

"My husband and I have a very active 18 month old boy Tyler. We just love the snow... we both snowboard every year and this year, thought we would take Tyler. We headed up to Merrijig which is a 20 minute drive to the top of Mount Buller. We drove up on the Friday afternoon, and specifically asked child care not to let Tyler sleep so that he would then sleep in the car and we could have a peaceful journey. Unfortunately our plan didn't work, Tyler ended up sleeping at child care, and we had one of the worse road trips ever!! Tyler screamed nearly the entire time, so we stopped for a break, but Tyler fell over in the mud and screamed even more. Great start!

We rented a double story house with my mum and dad, my Brother, his wife and 3 kids, and 2 friends with 2 kids (kids were all under 10 years old). We had a very noisy household!! We booked our accommodation through Mansfield Holiday letting - I have used them many times and usually rent a house called Timbertop Ridge which is fantastic but this year we rented another house called Mt Buller Views which was not at all child friendly.

The hardest part of our holiday was trying to get Tyler to sleep. With a house full of people Tyler didn’t want to sleep at all. Lack of sleep equals a very unhappy toddler! My recommendation would be to get out in the snow for some fun early in the day, and then by the afternoon, they should be exhausted, so getting them to sleep should be easy. But stupidly, I tried to fit in with everyone else in the house, and tried to give Tyler an early sleep and then head up the mountain but my plan failed, he didn’t sleep and by the time we got up the mountain Tyler was grumpy.

We did take Tyler tobogganing but I don’t think he really knew what was happening, he just cried. And there were so many people at the toboggan park that I could not just let Tyler run around and have fun, so maybe we should have tried Mt Stirling which is just great for snow play with the kids.

Proper clothing for the snow is a must, especially for kids. I would recommend going to Op shops for second hand snow gear. I got all Tyler’s clothing from our local Op shop, and my nephews went to the Op shop at Mansfield (at the base of Mt Buller) and got all their clothing, they had heaps of snow gear and so cheap! I did get Tylers gloves from Aldi (they stock snow gear once a year, you need to look out for the sale but it is in June usually)and my mum got some good snow shoes which were very cheap.

My main tips:

Write a list of everything you need to take, as you are sure to forget something.

Take some kids DVD’s so that there can be some quiet time.

- Pack a First aid kit – which we didn’t take and we really did need.

Check with the property if the house is child friendly and if a safety gate is needed for stairs.

Can toddlers / kids reach the heaters – my nephew ended up in emergency with burns to his arm after falling on the heater.

Book your child into child care on the mountain, which we didn’t do but thinking back it may have been a good option, and I have friends who do and they say the staff and facilities are great.

We brought our portable high chair which fits to any table which was fabulous.

We also brought my mum and dad along! Very handy!

Tyler did thankfully sleep the entire way home"

Thanks to Veronica for some very useful info for taking the kids up to the snow. Do remember, its not all that easy and its really important to be prepared for it not to go quite to plan! Our final installation of our snow theme will be part 2 of where to go to the snow. So please tune in soon...

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