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First trip post children advice please

(12 Posts)
chasethesnow Thu 06-Feb-20 15:02:09

We are going on our first ski trip since having children with extended family. I have a 3 and 1 year old and we are heading to La Plagne.
I was hoping for advice on what to expect and if our plans sound realistic.

DH and I are relatively confident skiers (learnt when we were 20 and been almost every year until we had children). Far from pros though and certainly not good enough to teach children ourselves

We were planning to enrol 3 year old with Oxygene Ski School - from reading multiple reviews on Oxygen vs ESF, Oxygene come out on top for children enjoying themselves and no pressure on children. She is an active 3 year old who I am sure will love it when she gets into it but I am nervous that she will not allow me to drop her off. She currently is well settled in nursery but this is a completely new environment. Any advice or recommendations for this?

My brother is also coming with his 1 year old so there will be 2 of them who are the same age. We are planning for 2 people to be with them and take them in sledges, experience snow and generally have fun. The 3 year old can join them in afternoon or can do some beginner skiing with one of the adults.

Does this sound realistic? Any advice on ski schools?
Any general advice in terms of equipment and packing?

Thanks in advance

OP’s posts: |
LIZS Thu 06-Feb-20 16:58:44

I suspect your 3yo will tire quickly and not be up for much in the afternoons, even assuming she engages with lessons. Most lessons that age have limited skiing and lots of waiting to take turns or snow play. Will someone be on hand if she won't settle. Take layers for dc as the weather may vary, high factor suncream. Are the 1 yo walking well? If so they need snow boots that fit properly.

chasethesnow Thu 06-Feb-20 17:59:58

Thank you, yes I was thinking the fresh air probably will tire her out. I am thinking she will probably nap with the other 2 but lets see, don't want to overplan that part as we will have 2 adults not skiing in the afternoon anyway so she could stick with them or someone take her onto a nursery slope if she's keen. The maybe get her back out after she wakes but will see when we are there.

Yes there will definitely be at least one person close by if she doesn't settle, extremely keen to ensure we don't force her.

1yr old is walking but not completely stable, certainly will be by the time we go so yes will need good snow boots. Any recommendation on brands?

OP’s posts: |
poshme Fri 07-Feb-20 21:26:52

Take sugary snacks. Being in the snow and learning to ski is massively tiring and they need an easy energy boost that hits quickly!
Take more gloves than you think you need.
Take stickers- write their name in BIG letters & stick on their boots,skis, helmet. (Bitter experience of kids taking the wrong skis or boots from a locker room as ALL the kids equipment looks the same)

Thethingswedoforlove Fri 07-Feb-20 21:29:29

Oxygene are really fab in la Plagne! Don’t expect to get toooo much skiing in yourselves, stay relaxed and have a great time!

cantlivewithoutcoffee Sat 08-Feb-20 12:36:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

chasethesnow Sun 09-Feb-20 15:48:23

Thank you for the tips smile Will add labels to packing list and buy a few extra pairs of gloves too. I'm sure she will love the sugary treats post skiing smile I am really hoping all the fresh air and snow encourages good sleep from both of them, we have only had one family holiday since the second was born and sleep was a disaster.

Great to know Oxygene are good for childrens lessons. I'm keeping everything crossed that she enjoys the mornings with them, really not bothered how much skiing she learns, all I want to achieve from this trip is her to enjoy the snow and want to return

OP’s posts: |
ChateauMargaux Mon 10-Feb-20 17:01:38

3 is very young for ski lessons. Skiing seems to be the one domain where it is acceptable to have small children in an unfamiliar environment, in the cold, learning a new skill with complete strangers and it does result in lots of children crying. (Usually we wouldn't contemplate leaving a 3 year old in the park in the rain with a complete stranger to learn how to ride a bike while we went off shopping but yet while skiing, it seems totally reasonable!)

I know lots of kids love it. I have three children who all ski very well now. The two who had lessons at 3, still shy away from lessons and would prefer not to have them, they both remember their first lessons. The one who didn't have her first group lesson until she was 5 (middle child) is the best skier and is totally happy to have lessons. There are differing personalities involved and all kids are different.

Skiing is lots of fun but learning is dam hard work so don't overestimate how much she will manage to do. Also don't underestimate the amount of faff involved in getting a toddler to and from the piste!

As for packing, bring a rucksack that you can strap your child's skis on to. Bring her snow boots to change into straight away after the lesson as well as water and a snack, we carry games too to occupy kids while waiting for food. Think about bringing an ergo baby type carrier to pop her into to get home. (Once I skied down, got the ergo baby and hiked back up the hill to carry our youngest down after some rather unfortunate piste closures that were not indicated at the top of the run!). Bring spare gloves with clips on them and warm socks.

www.amazon.co.uk/Kids-Ski-Sock-Force-Poppy/dp/B0093DMZ2Q/ref=mp_s_a_1_3?dchild=1&psc=1&keywords=wigwam%2Bkids%2Bski%2Bsocks&th=1&tag=mumsnetforu03-21&qid=1581352961&sr=8-3
These are the best socks we have ever tried, thick, high % wool. Other 'tech' materials have never matched up. They come in very small sizes but I am not sure about the sizes on this link.

And gloves... worth shelling out for the best you can here too... We use Hestra Heli Mitts with removable inner liners and leather palms which never result in wet hands and can be dried out easily if they get snow in them. They have long cuffs and elastic that go around the wrists so never leave your child (or adult!). We have never needed spares with these.

The rest of the clothing is less important.

chasethesnow Wed 12-Feb-20 09:46:55

Thank you so much for the tips @ChateauMargaux. I have to admit I have wondered the same thing myself about going for ski lessons at 3 - neither DH or I were child skiers but friends that were all speak of being dropped off to ski school from that age each year and how they've grown to love it so I came to accept that is how children learn. Saying that, I am keen to ensure she is happy to go and am certainly not going to dump and run if she is upset. We have been ice skating with her multiple times since she was 2 and she enjoys it, I am sure she will love skiing if she gets into it but - as you rightly say - the environment in which they learn makes a difference which is why I am so keen to ensure we get that right.

Our apartment is right in the middle of Plagne Centre - just a minute away from the Oxygene meeting point. We picked this on purpose so we have minimal faff in terms of getting out there and to class. We have carrier for the youngest - will see if she still fits into it or look into borrowing a toddler one.

Thanks for tips on gloves and socks. Will look at both and make sure we have good quality ones - cold hands and feet will definitely result in a negative experience

OP’s posts: |
Toomanyapplesinthefruitbowl Fri 14-Feb-20 20:11:44

I think it all depends on the 3 year old - our youngest was skiing down blue and green runs at the end of his first week’s ski holiday at 3 1/2. He loved ski school and did lessons in the morning and family skiing in the afternoon. Have a great time smile

chasethesnow Sat 15-Feb-20 16:08:35

Totally agree, just not too sure how mine is going to react when we are out there. She will be the same age when we go - judging by her personality, she will hopefully love it the same way as yours but it doesn't take much for her to decide she doesn't want to do something so I am trying to have no expectations other than for her to enjoy the week in the snow

OP’s posts: |
NCTDN Sat 15-Feb-20 22:16:02

We went when DD was 1. They're were 4 adults so we took turns in skiing and childcare so we had plenty of skiing chances. DD loved the snow and was happy playing in it for hours. We took her on a horse drawn sledge too.

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