It’s Officially Winter; I Need a Ski Closet

When is the first official day of winter?  The calendar says December 21, but anyone in Vermont knows that’s quite arbitrary.  You may define it as the first good snow fall, the first time you have to shovel your driveway, or the first sub-zero night.  Those landmarks have all come and gone this year, so for me, the first real day of winter is my first day of skiing.  I love skiing!  I love it probably about as much as riding my bike – I’m not sure what I’d do if I didn’t live in a place where I could either Ski or Bike on any given day of the year.  While Sugarbush opened the weekend before Thanksgiving I’ve been dragging my feet knowing the snow wouldn’t be very good, but when I discovered I had today completely off from all responsibilities I couldn’t help myself.  I raided my bike shed for my ski stuff and headed up to the mountain.

Up We Go, First Run of the Year!!!

Up Up and Away, First Run of the Year!!!

Though the snow wasn’t particularly grand, it was good enough to officially declare this winter!  My legs were not used to the skiing motions, but it came back to me on the first run.  My edges had been garnished with a bit of rust from storage in my humid bike shed all summer, but glare ice on Organgrinder took the rust off and my edges held fast.  Ripcord was fabulous though had as many deep boot holes from the night snow-making team as it had ski tracks.  The fog was thick and the skiing so-so but it felt great to be on the slopes.  Other than the Lifties, a few ski patrol and ski instructor training groups, and a handful of snowboarders who looked like they should be in school, I had the mountain to myself. By the time it started raining I decided four hours wasn’t bad for the first day and headed back home.  I felt great although my feet were tired and sore, I guess my feet muscles don’t get much exercise in the off season!

Paradise Extension

Paradise Extension was the only natural snow trail open, and there wasn’t much natural snow!

I love the look of trees coated with snow and ice from the snow-guns, though it can't be very good for them!

I love the look of trees coated with snow and ice from the snow-guns, though it can’t be very good for them! It was so foggy you could only see about one mogul ahead of you at any given time!

When I got home, I decided to do some long overdue organizing.  I needed a place to keep my ski boots and other wet snow stuff inside and out of the way for the winter.  I needed a ski closet, time to get creative.  This process of making more space without actually adding any space is something I’ve gotten quite good at.

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The first thing I did was turn this mess…

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Into this! I’d hung these curtains up once before but didn’t have a good fastening system so they didn’t stay up for long.  This time I used eye hooks to hold the wooden dowels and they seem to be much more secure.

Having the composting toilet behind the stairs has worked well for three years, but hasn’t been perfect.  It didn’t leave much elbow room, it was hard to get Georgia in and out of, and it was open to the main house which made it a tad awkward when I had company.  So I decided to make a few alterations to the bed frame in my “spare” bedroom so that the toilet and toilet related stuff (sawdust bin, etc) would fit under the end of the bed.  It now looks like this:

My toilet and sawdust bin now slide easily in and out from under the spare bed, neatly tucked away when not in use.

My toilet and sawdust bin now slide easily in and out from under the spare bed, neatly tucked out of the way when not in use.

I hung a curtain across the door way that can be easily slid over to store along the wall in my new ski closet

I even hung a curtain across the doorway for when privacy is needed.  When not in use it easily slides over to store along the wall in my new ski closet

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What was my bathroom is now my ski closet, with lots of hooks to hang wet coats and space to store wet boots. Now I’ll never have to put on freezing cold ski boots again!

All in all I spent less than $10 on dowels and hardware and about an hour making minor adjustments to my house.  I’m excited to have the extra space and feel like things came together really well.  While I’ve had this project in the back of my head for some time, only time will tell how well it works.  I have no doubt it will be changed once again in the future, that’s just my style!:-)

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