Friday, March 2, 2012

The winter that never happened

This winter has been a bit of a bust here in Minnesota.  We are accustomed and look forward to snow falling in November or December and staying on the ground well into March.  Kids wear snow pants and snow boots back and forth to school for months on end, and we embrace the frigid temps along with skating, skiing, and sledding.  This winter has been so abnormal, we have had to work a little harder to enjoy our winter activities.  We planned a trip to Bemidji to ski, only to find that they hadn't had enough either.  At least we were able to try out some ice fishing (Travis and Greg caught a northern), and there was just enough snow to ski on the frozen Mississippi with my cousin Rebecca.

Our x-country ski league had to meet every week out at a recreation area that was making snow and grooming a track for all the die-hard skate and classic skiers in our area.  Only once was I able to go out and ski at the golf course near our house.  And the City of Lakes Loppet race was shortened from a 33k race through the woods and across the uptown Minneapolis lakes to 5 laps around a man-made loop at  a golf course.  Leif worked on his skate x-country technique this year in the ski league, while the girls perfected their classic skills.  All three of them also joined a swim club and worked twice a week on refining their strokes, learning flip turns and dives, and participating in a swim meet in January.  By the end of the season, both Leif and Hanna were able to swim the 500 yard freestyle in 10 minutes, and Elisabet improved from barely being able to complete 2 laps to having perfect backstroke and breaststroke techniques and keeping up with all the older kids during the workouts.

Wren's big accomplishment for the winter was learning to walk.  She is motivated by a loud cheering section of family members and I imagine it won't be long before she is running to keep up with all of them outside.

And here are some random photos to peruse:

Winter 2011/2012

And some professional photos:

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