Cambridge, Mass – There was one winter when the twins were four years old, when we did a fair amount of ice skating. This was my early attempt to embrace winter (although I notice that I called it “Surviving Winter” in this blog post). We did the learn-to-skate program at the local ice rink. We went to the Frog Pond at the Boston Common on weekends. We tried, we really tried.
The following year, we did not try again.
The thing is that I grew up going ice skating and watching hockey games on Lake St Clair (many memories of being frigid cold but having lots of fun). In high school, we went went to the ice rink during gym class. I never played hockey or learned to figure skate, but everybody in southeast Michigan knew the basics of ice skating. That’s what I had in mind when the twins started ice skating at age four. But in retrospect, it was too early for them. It was hard work for those little four-year-old ankles, and they kind of hated it. (But look at how cute they were!)
Fast forward seven years. The twins have since embraced skiing (which–let’s face it–is way more fun than ice skating). And I had completely forgotten about ice skating.
Until a friend invited the twins for “free skate” at the local ice rink on a Sunday afternoon. Free skate is “free” in both senses of the word–the skaters can do whatever they want on the ice and it costs nothing. Double bonus!
So they twins started going ice skating with their friends on a semi-regular basis this winter. It is a totally low-key, no-pressure environment. They skate around. They listen to music. They hang out with their friends. It has been a really fun option as a wintertime activity. And it’s a fantastic alternative to skiing, that is much cheaper and requires much less schlepping.
And I admit that I am also enjoying reliving this little piece from my youth. It’s not the lake, but it’s fun!
This weekend, our local rink was closed, so we went to Skate @ Canal District in Kendall Square. It’s not free, but it is outside! Snuck in this outing just before this outdoor rink closed for the season. But we’ll definitely be back next winter!