My husband and I were scheduled to have a weekend away in the mountains. When our babysitter got sick, we embraced the change of plans that resulted in a fun family snow day in Idyllwild, CA.

We packed up the kids’ sleeping bags, pillows, and cots. We loaded up the dog (thankfully the cabin site was pet friendly!). Our small SUV was packed to the brim as we slowly made our way up the mountain on a Friday night after work and school.

To our surprise (although, I am not sure why we were surprised), we eventually reached snow lining the road. When we reached our cabin, walkways were covered in snow and the roof was lined with icicles.

We are not accustomed to snow in our hometown, and were so excited for the “treat”.

Idyllwild, CA
Our Binksy girl did not know what to think of her morning walk in the snow.
Location: Idyllwild Bunkhouse, Idyllwild, CA

We piled into our small cabin, shhh-ing the boys so we could adhere to the 9pm quiet hours rule. My husband and 6-year old son immediately began building a small snowman on the patio of our room. My 5-year old and 3-year old sons curled up on the bed on their tablets.

Idyllwild Bunkhouse
Our sons in awe of having a snow view from their window.

I unpacked, set out pajamas, and tried to find a place for the entire house worth of things we packed for this trip. 🙂

Idyllwild Snow Day

The next morning, we enjoyed a delicious breakfast at the Red Kettle Restaurant. Our sons colored and behaved so well. Parents of small children, I know you can resonate with what an amazing feat that is!

We spent the day playing in the snow at the local playground and regional park… snowball fights, snowmen, snow angels, and stopping them from licking icicles!

After lunch and hanging out back in the cabin, we realized there was not much else for us to do with the kids. We had selected this location as an adult getaway, and with the weather, we truly had exhausted all things to do with the kids.

So, for the first time, we willingly left a hotel reservation early and headed back home Saturday evening. Although they missed the snow, the kids appreciated being able to live at “full volume” again.


This situation and experience had me reflecting on a few different things.

  • Sometimes you receive what you need instead of what you want.
    • Although I could certainly argue that we needed that husband and wife weekend getaway, what we received instead was even better. A day of exploration, fun, laughter, and the magic of snow… with our three precious boys.
  • I will never get over experiencing the world through my sons’ eyes. What I find ordinary, they find extraordinary, and I want to still view the world in that way.
  • It’s okay to end plans early if they aren’t serving you well.
    • We toiled back and forth with leaving the cabin a night early since we had already paid for it. We ultimately decided that it was not worth the stress of trying to keep our three rambunctious boys silent in that room for one more night.
  • Lastly, why do we never pack appropriately for a trip?! It seems I can never win here. The trips I over-pack, we don’t need any of the extra clothes or supplies. The trips I under-pack, we need everything!

Here’s to embracing the magic of a change in plans, and still hoping for that husband and wife getaway real soon!

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