Moms’ weekend in Banff

I am lucky to live in a neighbourhood where some of the other moms are motivated and organized enough to plan an annual Banff weekend. We all have young children and feel the need to escape them regularly. This year over 20 of us descended on the Inns of Banff for two days.

Our group poses in Johnston Canyon.

We commiserated over the relentless job of parenting, laughed a lot, ate far too many cheese-and-crackery-type snacks, drank many bottles of wine and caught up on some much-needed sleep. For me the best part was making new friends and getting to know some other women in the ‘hood a little bit better.

The weekend also reinforced what we all know: from time to time, Mommy needs a break from the kids so she can return refreshed and ready to embrace parenting again. And let’s not forget that Daddy benefits from this special bonding time with his darlings (for the record, my husband carted them up to Red Deer so his parents could share in the special bonding time). Here are some weekend highlights:

This popular hike is way less busy in November.

1. Hiking in Johnston Canyon. The trail was perilously icy, but the company was great and the scenery beautiful. I couldn’t help but think how my kids would complain during the duration of the hike and how Bennett would have insisted on holding my hand the entire five kilometres.

2. Giant hot tub at Inns of Banff. I guess the trend at mountain resorts is to have an obscenely large outdoor hot pool with a view. I spent over half an hour soaking after the hike = bliss. Did I mention the hotel rooms come with free marijuana in the ice bucket? Oh wait, that was some hotel worker’s private stash we discovered (and left) in the Deluxe Cottage kitchen.

I didn’t realize they would serve me half a duck. There were leftovers.

3. Dinner at the Maple Leaf. We dined around a table for 22 in the private room at this popular Banff resto. I ordered a Maple Martini (heavy on the maple syrup, rather light on the maple whiskey) and the Brome Lake duck. Yum. The best part, though, was being able to have complete comversations without being interrupted.

4. Brunch at The Bison. Yes, there was even more food the following morning at Banff’s top brunch spot. My pulled pork and scrambled egg crepe was delish, and we got to linger over coffee, in no particular hurry to get back to Calgary and the kid-schedules that keep us busy during the week.

Brunch at The Bison in Banff is the best!

What a great weekend — already looking forward to 2013!

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