Month-By-Month with the Brave Ski Mom: October Is A Great Month To…

All busy moms (and dads) need checklists.  October marks the beginning of ski season in Colorado, as Loveland and Arapahoe Basin duel it out to see who will make the most snow and get their lifts open first.  Sometimes, mother nature helps a lot and other times, being fickle and unpredictable, she doesn’t.  But fickle is the nature of October: freezing temps, followed by golden Indian summer days, followed by gray rain and snow, maybe a few more golden days, and of course, Halloween.

Here is my October  “to-do” list.  Don’t worry, I won’t share all of it with you, but you can count on some skiing-related posts as I work through my chores. And, maybe it will remind you of a few things that you want to do too.


2008 was a warm Halloween. Thus, a sweaty yeti.

o   Plan ahead and make a crazy Halloween costume. Let your imagine run wild, grab your glue gun or sewing machine and go for it!  In past years, my sons and I have produced a gorilla, a centaur, two bats and a yeti. All I know this year, is that the 11 year-old has an “idea” and it is “furry.” (Guess who was the gorilla last year and a yeti the year before?)

2009 was the year of the gorilla.

o   Enjoy the surprising Indian Summer weather. Although we know these days will come every year, the warm weather after the first freezes still astound us with their beauty.  These days are like gold.

o   Gather up any remaining ski necessities.  Clean out the ski bags, reload to make sure everything fits and eagerly wait for the lifts to open!

o   Eat bratwurst, sauerkraut and strudel. Drink beer and apfelschorle (apple juice with sparkling water — a treat for kids and adults — click for a recipe) and celebrate Oktoberfest!  Many ski resorts (for example Snowbird, UTAttitash, NH and Sugar Mountain, NC) have big Oktoberfest celebrations planned.  Check your resort’s website, and head out to enjoy the last of the fall colors and do the chicken dance.

o   Enjoy the end of the fall sports seasons, such as soccer, football and volleyball. Continue trying to be good sports parents, even if the season wasn’t as successful as it could have been. The kids are still having fun.

o   Rake leaves, clean out the garden, pick up the outside dog toys, mow the grass one more time and pray for snow.

o   Sign the kids up for recreational ski racing. We are not racing this year, but lots of friends are. If your kids are involved in USSA, get in shape with them during dryland training. (This one is for the rest of you. We’re “retired.”)

o  Carve pumpkins. Get a head size one, put a beanie and ski goggles on it. Is it a self-portrait or maybe one of the family?

o   Drink hot chocolate and eat steel-cut oatmeal with dried fruit on the first snowy morning.

o  Put away the summer shorts and start wearing sweaters. It feels good to be cozy.  Enjoy!

© 2010 – 2011, Kristen Lummis. All rights reserved. Any use or publication of content, including photos, requires express permission.


  1. Dayna Ashley-Oehm says

    Don’t forget to hit the ski swaps to trade in your kid’s outgrown gear for something that will fit. Winter Park has a ski swap October 15 – 17.

    • says

      Thanks for the heads-up on the Winter Park Ski Swap. Sounds like you’ve got some gear to trade out! There are lots of bargains out there. Good luck!

      ps – For my take on ski swaps and gear trading please see my Gear Strategy posts of 8/10, 8/12 and 8/17.