Even When I Feel Like a Loser, It Turns Out I’m A Winner

NASJA award winners 2014

Award winners Gerry Pallor of New York (video), me (blogs), and Marty Basch of New Hampshire (newspaper columns). Not pictured Tom Winter of Vail, Colorado a dual winner for photography and feature writing.

brave ski mom logoOn October 10th, I was feeling sorry for myself.

It was raining —again – a not uncommon experience in Colorado during the fall of 2013.

My husband was in Aspen partying with friends from college, many of them my friends too, but since it was a “guy thing,” I was at home.

My kids were in Moab, Utah with my parents waiting for the rain to break and the trails to dry so that they could have a fun weekend mountain biking.

I was mending a moth hole in a  favorite cashmere sweater (really).

My phone rang.

I let it go to voicemail.

Then I listened.

Guess What? You Won!

nasja logoIt was Kim Kircher, an author, creator of an amazing adventure radio show and an online friend. She’s also the Vice President of Awards for NASJA, the North American Snowsports Journalists Association.

As I listened to her message, my ears started ringing. Bells were pealing in my brain and I couldn’t stop smiling.

I had won the Harold S. Hirsch Award for the Best Snowsports Blog of 2013 for my work here, at the Brave Ski Mom. (You can see a video prepared for the awards by clicking on this link.)

nasja winners

Other honorees included Michael Berry, the President of the National Ski Areas Association; Jon Lundin, Communications Director for the New York State Olympic Regional Development Authority; Ted Heck, editor and publisher of The Blue Book of European Skiing; and Raelene Davis, Vice-President of Marketing for Ski Utah.

Toot! Toot! Here Goes My Horn!

For the past 3 ½ years, I’ve put a lot of work into my blog. It’s taken me places I would never have imagined (most recently Quebec and Vermont) and introduced me to people who have become dear friends.

It has opened doors within the ski industry that I didn’t even know existed and it gave this rather bored stay-at-home mom of teens an invaluable creative outlet.

And yet, many of friends didn’t get it. “Why do you do this?” they’d ask. “Do you make any money? Isn’t it a lot of work?”

The last question was easy to answer. Yes, it is a lot of work, but it’s fulfilling.

The middle question was also easy to answer. No, I make very little money, although the blog has opened doors to paying writing gigs.

But the first question, that’s the kicker.

bonhomme and friends

Good friends all: me, Bonhomme, the mascot of the Quebec Winter Carnival and Jenn Boyd of Weidinger PR, South Lake Tahoe, CA.

Why Do I Do This?

And the answer is, because I love it. Even on days when I’m tired and blue, I love it. When there’s a hole in my favorite cashmere sweater and no one is signing up for a giveaway, I still love the process of writing.

harold hirsch award blogsI love it. It energizes me. And to be able to write about skiing, and parenting, and family is a double bonus.

The Brave Ski Mom blog combines all of my loves into one. I am truly blessed.

Plus, it feels super good to have my work recognized by my peers and experts from the field of journalism.

Toot! Toot!

I wrote this post about one hour after finding out that I’d won the 2013 Harold Hirsch Best Blog Award from NASJA. Per NASJA tradition, we’re supposed to keep things quiet and not share the good news. With no family at home, I turned to typing and writing and smiling…and smiling…and smiling.

Thank you so much for reading and helping me to make this adventure what it is!


nasja friends killington

Just a few of my outstanding NASJA friends last week at Killington!

Related Posts: 

Tight Turns: Would You RENT Ski Clothes? And What the Heck is NASJA? , July 1, 2013.

© 2014, Kristen Lummis. All rights reserved. Any use or publication of content, including photos, requires express permission.


  1. says

    So happy for you! You and your blog deserve it and it sounds like you are blogging for all the best reasons.

    • says

      Thank you so much Natasha! And thanks for helping with a post about Sunday River, Maine! I still need to get there! Hope you had a great ski season!

  2. Jean and Greg Dillon says

    Proud parents say Awesome award! Impressive panel of judges! They knew what they were doing when they chose you and your writing!!!

  3. says

    Big congratulations, Kristen. Go ahead and toot that horn. You deserve it! Maybe you should change the name of your blog to “The Award-Winning Brave Ski Mom.”

    • says

      Thank you so much Wendy! I guess I should change my bio! It was a BLAST skiing with you last Tuesday. Wish we could do it more often. Hope to see you soon!

  4. Michelle McMurray says

    What a great honor – congratulations! You so deserve this! Very happy for you. :-)

  5. says

    Congratulations Kristen,

    What is more you are eager to help pull others onto that same wagon you are on.

    I am saving for Quebec and will make that happen, hope I can fit SIA 2015 in as well!