This december break has been so hard <GREAT SARCASM>. My son has occupied himself happily and been very independent – from preparing his own PBJ sandwiches to showering and getting dressed – It’s like “I got this, Mom”. He’s been in his room laughing for the last 30 minutes. He’s started telling me “my turn” or “Your turn” – and spending more time sitting next to me on the couch or in the kitchen. He’s letting me pull away from him finally. He’s finally understanding the benefits of self-regulation and verbal communication. I know neuro-typical adults who haven’t mastered either of those in several decades of trying – so he and I are both feeling kinda proud. We did it without candy or treats – no carrot on a stick – no stickers or fast food trips – No. We did it simply by explaining how important it was. Finally, he saw the value in the desired behavior, and chose the desired behavior. Uh…that’s HUGE! The psychologist in my brain is running around crazy like Doctor Emmet Brown 😉
I went back to the mountain for my Giftmas Daycation today. Crystal Mountain Resort in Enumclaw, Washington, is our usual snow-spot of choice. On clear days, we’ll take the gondola up to the summit and have lunch in the Summit House Restaurant. The gondolas are completely enclosed cars and give more safety and security to the rider. I’m not comfortable with the openness of a standard ski lift bench or it’s usual distance from the ground so it allows me access to the Summit House. At 6,872 feet altitude, it’s advertised as Washington’s highest elevation dining – and the views are breathtaking. Be prepared to share a table for 8 or 10 as space limited and they pack in as many as they can. The food is very good, reasonably priced, and quite filling.
Today, since it was snowing fairly heavy and the clouds had settled in, there wouldn’t be a view up top, so we stayed on the ground level and sat on the heated covered patio and relaxed. Right inside the door from the patio was an espresso stand, and we could smell breakfast from the cafeteria across the lodge. Food is a little pricey here – but there are lots of places to picnic – inside and outside. I’d strongly recommend bringing your own food – there are even lockers where you can stash stuff while you’re playing in the snow. There’s a few different places to grab a drink or coffee or a sandwich around the resort, though, and our favorite is the Cellar Lounge – tiny little bar in the cellar of the hotel. We like this place for the atmosphere – everyone is friendly and no one is a stranger. Parking is free as well as the shuttle to the lodge from the main parking lots. Invest in snow clothes and good snow boots before you go. Just trust me on that one.