The Frugalish Skiing Splurge

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appalachian skiing

I’ve only been skiing once this year.  And it was on the warmest weekend we’ve had all winter.  Go figure.  I had friends coming in from out of town just for the trip, so rescheduling wasn’t an option.  The Sochi-like weather made the conditions some of the worst I’ve ever seen, but we still had an amazing time.

Things get really crazy around here.  Work.  Kids.  His work.  His schooling.  I’m an incredibly goal-oriented person, so sometimes I feel like I need to just push through the stress and keep going.  I don’t need to have fun.  I need to put my nose to the grindstone.  I don’t need relief.  I need accomplishment.  And then I see something as commercial as an Apple commercial that brings it all home:

For the record I own nothing Mac.  And really those are Walt Whitman’s powerful words.  But it got to me.  I need to start living.  And now.  For me, skiing is poetry.  I haven’t been in a while so this trip was the kind of poetry without punctuation that doesn’t rhyme.  But flying through the woods makes me feel alive.  Pushing my body to do new things just to see if it can focuses and centers me.  Even just easing alone down a quiet, lonely trail at night with the snow glittering in the moonlight brings me peace.

So I splurged on a ski trip.  I wrote before about how you can get discounts on lift tickets and rentals.  My friend was telling me that Pine Township offers great prices on lift tickets for the weekdays if you go to their main office, but I’m not 100% sure that hasn’t changed in the past few years.  (Worth calling to find out.)  But we went on a weekend.  When Like2Ski didn’t have a trip.  So we paid full-price, albeit not for an entire full-day pass.

But we got our rentals at a place on the road to the resort.  I saved $30 by not getting them at Seven Springs.  We carpooled.  So we saved a little bit of money.

But skiing for cheap wasn’t the point.  The point was getting out there and doing something we love to do.  The point was seeing and connecting with people that I haven’t in…too long of a time.  The point was to have fun.

And we did.  I took a day off from my absolutely insane routine.  The world didn’t end.  I spent a little bit of money on myself.  My bank account didn’t overdraw, and our financial goals didn’t disappear into oblivion.

It’s good to work hard, but it’s equally good to enjoy life.  My family is the number one thing that makes life worth living.  I’ll always work hard to make life the best I can for them.  But it’s okay for me to say that skiing is somewhere further down on that list, too.  Even if it’s an expensive hobby, it’s worth spending some money on every once in a while.  Because it’s a part of my verse.

What non-essential part of your budget is worth every penny?

13 thoughts on “The Frugalish Skiing Splurge

  1. Mel

    I love skiing! I pretty much destroyed my knee in high school in an accident (and those toboggan rides down the hill with ski patrol are as scary as they look), and I’ve been super timid ever since. Until I put my skis on. Then it all comes right back. I love the feeling of flying too.

    And it’s pretty much the best workout there is – you are not going to suddenly decide you’re tired and give up when you’re halfway through a sheer drop covered in moguls.

    I don’t know about in PA, but in NJ we have Triple Play cards – which are where you buy 3 lift tickets at once at a discounted rate.

    1. femmefrugality

      We had a friend do that on one trip! Awful! I’m glad it doesn’t take much to get your confidence back! I felt that way when I went up, too…it’s a lot like riding a bike, but a little bit harder as the muscle groups you use are so insane. And, yeah, there is no backing out! Once you go up that lift you’ve committed to coming down!

      I don’t know if we have the exact same deal at our big resort here, but we do get some different options with each new season.

  2. donebyforty

    I’m ashamed to admit that that bit from Dead Poet’s Society accidentally inspired me to become an English teacher. True story: before renting that movie on VHS, I was going to go into computer science. The lesson: be careful exposing your children to Robin Williams. The impact can be dangerous and expensive, especially if it turns out you cannot handle a room full of sarcastic children on a daily basis.

    I’m so glad you were able to do something you love! Our splurge is travel and, I think, restaurants. We like dining out and especially like going somewhere new, staying in a hotel, and wandering around in some place that we might get lost in.

    1. femmefrugality

      Haha, don’t be ashamed…that movie was amazing! I understand the loss in potential income and work content being a wake up call, but I think it’s so rare that we follow through with things that inspire us.

      When I first learned to drive one of my favorite things to do was to drive to a part of town where I had no idea where I was. (Can you tell I lived in the burbs back then?) I totally get it. I love the feeling of seeing new places and the experiences they might hold. (Within a certain safety threshold.)

      1. monroeonabudget

        “Snow is the only good thing it produces” LOL! On a serious note, if you had fun for a day, that was money well spent. My just for fun hobby is Barbie doll collecting, but it’s not as expensive as people imagine it to be.

  3. Leonard @ The Wallet Doctor

    Its good to give yourself some space for things that are really valuable to you! For me, I have to have an occasional trip to Disneyland. Its not essential, but it really helps me keep perspective. Thanks for the interesting post!

  4. Aspiring Millionaire

    We live 2hrs from the snow, so most people here spend a chunk of winter at the snow. Love it. I am about to start spending money on a cleaner. Non essential as I can do it, but would prefer not to and would prefer to spend more time with my kids.

  5. thepursuitofriches

    I never skied. Ever. 🙂 even I think it’s a little weird, because I’m probably the only one in my family (I don’t how that happened). But anyway: I think it’s more than OK to splurge on something every now and then. I hope you absolutely, fully and completely enjoyed it! 🙂

  6. Pingback: Why Lake Louise Ski Resort is a Great Deal | Femme Frugality

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