This past weekend we traveled to the charming ski town of Ellicottville, New York, where we stayed with our friends, Jimmy and Julie, who own a ski chalet nestled right into the side of the mountain.
It was a lovely weekend with mild temperatures, perfect for hiking and walks into town. Between the two families, we had five kids ages five and under. Whew! Because of the kiddos, we kept the itinerary simple and flexible: our mornings were quiet and un-rushed; we made dinners at home; we enjoyed reading on the balcony while the boys played with their toys.
Because we stayed in our friends’ home, I won’t be sharing any photos that include the interior of the house to respect their privacy. I did take plenty of photos of our weekend adventures, though. Take a look!
Bea wanted to drive, but we said she should probably wait until she could reach the gas pedal…and the steering wheel.
A gorgeous view of Lake Chautauqua on our drive.
The boys were thrilled to discover they were staying in bunk beds for the weekend.
I loved starting my day with a cup of coffee and a book out on the deck. The weather was a little cooler, which made it perfect for snuggling under a blanket or a sweater. And those views! All we could hear was the little stream out front, the birds, and the breeze. It was so peaceful.
Vacation equals lots of time spent reading for us.
My little mountain man.
Literally asked me to marry him. I died. He really can be the sweetest.
We hiked for a total of one and a half hours, with the boys walking the entire way. The hike took us up the ski mountain and down the other side. It can be really exhausting having little boys with so much energy, but then there are times – like on our hike – when I’m so grateful and proud of them and their ability to be so physical. They walked on their own the entire time. Sure, there were a few times they complained, but how many five and two year olds would have hiked that long? I was so proud of them.
A little lake that greeted us at the top.
The town of Ellicottville is so charming. It’s fully of cute shops, yummy non-chain restaurants, and has a local calendar full of festivals and events. There was a festival going on while we were in town that included events for kids and live music. Ellicottville is a little slice of Americana Heaven.
We ventured into town for lunch, when meal time is a little more relaxed. For dinner, we stayed home and Julie and I took turns preparing meals. Julie made these delicious flatbread pizzas that she grilled. They were as amazing as they look! I enjoyed the flatbread taste so much more than pizza crust. It was light, but kept it’s buttery softness instead of getting too crispy (my complaint about thin-crust pizza). You can find the recipe Julie used for the flatbread crust here.
I fell in love with this church. Isn’t it so pretty?
Every vacation must include a trip to the local ice cream shop!
I stocked up on a few Dollar Store items for the kids for this trip. Some of them I put into tote bags for the boys to keep with them in the van, while others I packed in my bag and would periodically pull something out for them to play with while we were at the house. Dollar Tree playdough is great because you can get package of 12 for $1, and don’t feel bad about throwing it away when you are done. I had them play with it on the deck on cookie sheets to keep our friends’ house clean ;-).
The whole crew!
Any weekend tripers out there? What have been your favorite places for a quick weekend getaway?