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A ski holiday with children is easy if you use a Nanny service

A ski holiday with children is easy if you use a Nanny service

This blog post is by Nicole Wallbank from Meribel Nanny Services 

nanny childcare ski school meribelA day with a nanny!

Youre looking at all the things ready to put in your suitcases and wondering, how is it going to fit? And have I got everything? Going skiing with your children is a great holiday but there’s a lot of organising to be done before and after you arrive which can feel overwhelming………..

Cue your private ski nanny, she knows what the children need for the day ahead, how to get their ski boots on, where ski school drop off is, the best places to take the children to lunch and the best places for snowman building and sledging.

Having a flexible private nanny for the week can mean you really can just ski, relax and enjoy your stress free holiday.

What does the nanny actually do with the children all day?

The first day is the most hectic.Your nanny will swoop in early to make sure she has all the correct details, which of course she does as you have spoken to the childcare manager before your arrival and the nanny has even bought a toy box with lots of amazing toys, including a mass of train track pieces which you had put on your information form as a favourite toy of your sons.

Knowing there is a toy box at your chalet for the week has meant that you haven’t had to bring a whole suitcase just full of toys!

meribel la tania ski school childcareSki School

Ski school starts at 9:15 and the nanny has let you know it is best to get there for 9am on the first day to find the right class and settle the older children in. She starts to help get the children ready which is great as you also have to get ready yourself and you haven’t got a clue where your ski pants and helmet are.

She goes through the check list, thermals, fleece, ski socks, ski pants, waterproof mittens, sun cream, snood, coat, helmet and boots and ski’s oooops and not to forget a snack in their pocket plus 5 euros for a drink and that’s the children ready.

The children are in the car and ready to go as the grown up’s collect their last bits together and off we go.

Its half term and ski school can be really busy but the nanny knows exactly where to go and who to speak to, to find out who the children’s instructors are. The older two are happy to go off with their instructor but little Jack is only 4 and has never skied before. He is feeling a bit shy and unsure but the nanny reassures him and tells him she will stay with him during his lesson then after they can go for a play in the snow together.

This cheers him up and off they all go with the instructor leaving mum and dad to head to the chairlift for their first day skiing relaxed and sure that their children are in safe hands.

Once little Jack is finished his first ski lesson he and the nanny go off to do a bit of sledging, go for a play at the park and for a Crepe then at 1:15 go to pick up his older brother and sister from their lessons and get the bus back to the chalet.

Mum and Dad give the nanny a quick call to see how everything is and all the children are fine and happy.

They have a nice warm pasta lunch and build a town with a gigantic train track running through and around it a game of hide and seek before colouring a picture to stick in their holiday diaries.

Then it’s time to pop on all their layers and ski clothes and head out to play in the snow, building snow castles and a snowman the size of Jack.

Meanwhile mum and dad have had a great ski a lovely lunch and have come back to very happy busy children, a warm cup of tea and a lovely afternoon tea cake while their chalet hosts get dinner ready….. A very relaxing first day of skiing.

 Take a look at the childcare and nanny services that we recommend in Meribel and La Tania.


Teaching a loved one to ski – Part two

Teaching a loved one to ski – Part two

To read part one click here.

It is half way through your ski holiday and you are your non-skiing partner’s unofficial instructor. Somehow instead of this feeling like a holiday it has become a chore.  Yesterday you got some skiing in on your own but this was more due to the misfortune of your partner rather than by mutual consent. When you did finally get back from skiing you found them on their fourth large glass of chalet wine. You persuade them to hobble out for some après ski.

learning-to-ski

You are both a little worse for wear, but the lessons must go on. You struggle through the pain of your hangover and your student struggles through their injury’s and hangover. You have little sympathy considering the near perfect ski conditions. Just when you were considering a temporary separation, something clicks and you now have a parallel turning sweetheart, of sorts.

After lunch you decide that it is the right time to suggest trying something more challenging. But before you can suggest it they get in first. So you choose a route that you think is realistic and set off. You wait a lot. You get cold waiting. Your attempts to cheer yourself up by flicking snow at your exhausted companion is unsurprisingly met with irritation. The lifts stop in forty minutes time. You could catch the free bus back or you could do “one more run”.

The lifts shut the minutes ago. Somehow you are still on one. It has been stopped for over twenty. Which is fifteen minutes longer than your hung over, tired, sore and cold partner’s patience will last. You should have caught the bus. It is dark and you are both silent when you get off the mountain. You are walking slightly in front and carrying two sets of skis. What you both want is a drink. As you enter the bar you spot the annoying couple from the chalet and are delighted.

The next morning you are the first down for breakfast. The annoying couple somehow talked your lovely and wonderful partner into getting a ski lesson. It doesn’t start until 10 but they are having a lie in. Let the holiday begin. Your holiday is soon cancelled with bad news. Flat light. It’s not that bad, but you think of all the good days you have missed. You meet up for lunch. They are having a great day. The instructor announces that they are a natural. You cough.

Over dinner you would be forgiven for thinking that your companion had been skiing all their life. You also find it hard to believe the distance they covered and the slopes they have been on. You should be pleased. If true you will have two more days of incident and fair paced skiing left. You should also be happy that your loved one loves skiing. Instead you feel a little inadequate that your teaching wasn’t very good. You console yourself with the knowledge that you did the hard work.

They weren’t lying. They can now ski at a reasonable level. They are now fast enough that the wait is now an enjoyable rest. The penultimate day is great. You chat, laugh, and even kiss on the chairlifts. You have a long lunch. They are celebrating their new passion and achievement. You secretly toast to the ski holidays of the future. There is even the inevitable chat about buying a place out there and the new equipment you will buy.

The last day is a late start. The new skier’s ability is holding up. You are both having a great time. You have lunch on the move. There is a thought in the back of your mind that you should supress but you can’t. Eventually you come out with how you think they should have one last challenge, you know they can do it. Three hours later you are still on the same black run shouting encouragement. Bad idea.


Teaching a loved one to ski – Part one

Teaching a loved one to ski – Part one

When you put “keen skier” on your dating profile, the chances you will get one of the UK’s estimated 1 million active skiers is slim.  There is slightly more chance of finding someone who has been skiing, once.  But I doubt it is a deciding factor when weighing up the options for a marriage proposal.  The chances are that you will end up with a non skier.

Skiing is often something you learn when you are young. For most of us we had ski lessons when we went on a family holiday or school trip. Learning young makes it easier when we are older. It also makes us more determined to fit in a ski holiday no matter what.

So what happens when you fall in love with a non-skier and finally pop the question; “Will you go on a ski holiday with me”? Let’s hope the answered was a yes, and delirious with joy,you book your holiday.

As the dedicated and experienced skier what you are imagining is this… Hooning down the fresh powder, fast groomed pistes and steep challenging runs. All the while your non skiing partner is in ski school until they are good enough to keep up with you. What they are imagining is blue skys, snuggles on chairlift, skiing down empty runs hand in hand, with rainbows and romantic music playing in the background.

 What will actually happen is that you will say, “You should go into ski school”.
“But I don’t want to. It’s our holiday and I want to spend it with you. Couldn’t you teach me?”
You think about the potential skiing that you will miss out on, but take your loved ones feelings into consideration. You look at the cost of ski lessons and think “bugger that, I’ll teach them myself”.

You arrive in resort, the snow has just stopped after 3 days of dumping, The forecast for the week is sun. It is now day one. You are stood on the baby slope with the person you love. They are stood there in ill-fitting, borrowed ski clothes, with their bronze ski hire. You look at the mountain and sigh, you turn to the most important person in your life and say “first we need to learn to snowplough”. By mid morning you have covered the nursery slope 3 times, you partner is happy with the progress, however, you look up to see the powder fields slowly getting tracked out.  After lunch you move on to turning. It’s not going as well as you hoped.

On day two you wake up hopeful that your lover wakes up to say how much they ache and maybe they would like a day not skiing? No such luck, they have the skiing bug. This should please you and you should consider the long term implications of this, more ski holidays. But no, you are disappointed, especially as your attempt to palm them off onto someone else staying in your chalet failed last night. You carry both your sets of skis to the beginner area, today we are going to try and learn parallel turning. An edge is caught, there are tears and an extended lunch break. Little progress is made in the afternoon as it is just a confidence building exercise.

On day three you consider leaving your skis in the chalet. You say “don’t feel like you have to ski all day. You can have a rest in the afternoon if you like”. Somehow this backfires and you are rewarded with kisses for being thoughtful, but your offer is declined.  You choose a gentle slope to “session” for the day. You know it would normally take you 5 minutes at the most to ski this slope. The First time today it takes nearly two hours. The second time it takes half an hour less. Your legs are cramping up, and you are cold from waiting around so much. “I’m just going to ski down and catch the lift back up, I will catch you up.” The thrill of skiing lasts less than a minute before you reach the lift. From the lift you see your pupil and spouse lying on the slope with two skis located uphill from her. They are moving, phew. You don’t wave. Maybe this will put them off for the day. When you ski back down you can’t find them. Your phone rings. They have had a tumble and gone back to the chalet. “You go and have a ski without me”. You know you shouldn’t, but you do. A frosty reception awaits you at the chalet, but you have had a great afternoon skiing. Chalet wine will sort this out.

Click here to find out how the rest of the Holiday goes.


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