Our Winter Ice Skating Tradition

Six months into Ella’s first year of school and we have unintentionally started a little habit on Mondays: Skipping it.

I like to think of this as the 80/20 formula we picked up during Joel’s paleo stint: We follow the rules 80% of the time, and break them 20%.

Because anyone that knows me knows I’m all about the ABC’s (Hello, sight word cards I just ordered and am inappropriately excited about), but both Joel and I have quite untraditional views on what education is about and as it turns out, our introduction to mainstream schooling this year has caused us to really question our family’s way of travelling down this path and the schooling choices we’re making for our children. HOWEVER, that’s a post for another day and I’m under strict instructions to refrain from getting political, so: While some changes are on the horizon, right now we are balancing out a 30-hour week mainstream education with a bit of… flexibility.

And on Mondays, that looks a little like this:

We ticked off an annual winter tradition yesterday and headed into the city for the closest we’ll ever get to snow, and I’m so glad we did it before school holidays started. We had the place mostly to ourselves and it was just the best morning.

Last year, I found the event to be chaotic and disorganised, a mish-mash of bodies and staff who didn’t know what was going on. This year? This year was a dream and I couldn’t recommend going enough. The skating marshals on the ice were there purely to help — boosting Ella up every time she fell and grabbing Billy and zooming him around the rink so fast he was squeeling with happiness.

I stepped out this year because I wanted to be protective of our baby, but the kind staff offered to take a family snap and I’m so grateful to be in a couple of photos this year, blurry as they are.

We cemented our tradition with mulled wine for Joel and hot chocolate and donuts for the rest of us because anything that screams: Winter! I scream back: Take My Money and Give Me Everything!

Including tube rides on fake ice slides.

Joel tapped on another tradition this year: Climbing the City Hall clock tower and I don’t know, you guys, I’m supportive of his ideas but that night at dinner when we went around the table talking about each other’s highlight of the day, as we always do, nobody said climbing the clock tower. Anyway, it became such a funny inside family joke about Joel’s bad ideas that I’m sure we’ll climb the clock tower every year now just because it’s part of us.

The view was pretty impressive.

Hoping you all had a wonderful weekend! What are some fun winter traditions your family are going to do this season? I’d love to hear them!


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