picTORIal: New Year’s, Part 1

Over the holiday break, the kids begged to go see snow. Never a mom to disappoint (and secretly craving an excuse to bust out my faux fur infinity scarf) I began researching. Well, as any large family knows, it take planning to coordinate and reserve a place to stay for New Year’s, and should usually be done way in advance. Lake Arrowhead (2 hour drive from LA) Booked! Mammoth (4.5 hour drive from LA) Booked! Lake Tahoe (8 hours driving time) Bingo! And, it didn’t even take batting my eyelashes (much) to convince my hubby that him driving 4 kids on a 8 hour tour sounded like a good idea. I love how game he always is to my impromptu and passionate ideas! He’s the Ricky to my Lucy. So, a couple days before New Year’s The McDermotts hit the open road. Here we go…


Everyone up at 430 and on the road by 630 am. That’s a record for us!


Coffee, coffee, and more coffee. And lots of SpongeBob DVD’s would turn out to be key!


A few hours in the troops needed a potty break and breakfast! Being an avid foodie I yelped and yelped and found Apple Annie’s


Come on gang… Let’s go eat!


Kitsch goes a long way with us…


After breakfast we had to order one Apple Dumpling w/ vanilla ice cream for the table. After all, yelpers claimed it rocked. Pretty good!


Stella gave Apple Annie’s a thumbs up! She’s tiny but she’s a foodie!


Back on the road our tiny man Finn watched “Baby Einstein”


While Hattie Cat took a nap


And so did Miss Stella! (I took a pic of Liam crashed out too but sometimes he sleeps with his eyes half open and it looked creepy!)


Finally after a couple more Truck Stops and Denny’s pit stops we found snow! With all the food and potty stops Dean got us there in 9 hours and 45 minutes from the time we left LA. Amazing job Babe! We settled into The Village at Squaw Valley for a short winter’s stay!


At our condo the kids are ready to start our first snow day!


Still ready mom! Put down the iPhone and let’s go!!


Stella shows off her first snow bunny look!


Bungee trampoline in the village was a HUGE hit!


Liam got his bungee on


High flying Buggy!


Bundled up Hattie watched her siblings bounce


Hattie’s 1st time in the actual snow! She loved it!!


Not my dog but had to snap this adorable pic of this pup bundled up and being carried through the snowy village


Here we go up on the Gondola for lunch! Amazing view!


Stella is ready to ski (and eat!)


Hattie likes heights!


Liam said, “This is too cool!”


Finn aka Bear was cozy in his bear suit


My mischievous boy is ready to go!


View from the top


The McDermott’s are ready to ski!! (Jack flew up and met us there)


Let’s ski!!!!

So far, our New Year’s trip was off to a great start! The kids loved being in the snow, and it was so much fun to have our whole family together for a mini vacation.

Check back tomorrow because I’ll be posting more pics from our New Year’s vacay – trust me, you don’t wanna miss Stella rocking The New Year’s Eve fashion scene and pictures of family sledding!

How did your family spend New Year’s?


  • Ashley Taylor

    Too fun! I miss skiing and can’t wait for my kids to learn! We spent New Year’s with friends, eating and playing games! :)


    Love how you share everything with us readers. You have inspired me beyond belief and I appreciate your hard work! (Ps….,I got a truly madly deeply tat just like dean!)
    Excited to see the rest if the pics!

  • desi

    Oh, how beautiful! Thanks for sharing your beautiful family with us! That looks like so much fun. Love the picture of the apple dumpling with ice cream too. The perfect ending to a fine breakfast!

  • Tracy Mainwaring

    Adorable! I want to learn to ski too, but it’s a little scary! Esp. at a place like that where the “real” skiiers go!
    Just want to mention though that Stella’s chest clip is not high enough in the picture of her asleep (and Miss Hattie’s looks like it could be a little low too).
    How did the kids do with skiing and being cold?

  • Jeanne Tutt

    awww T I love how y’all included Jack! he’s getting so big! I miss going skiing! thanks for the pix!

  • Lemon Meringue

    Hats off to you and Dean for having the guts to go on an ad hoc style roadtrip! We do roadtrips with three kids through Europe in a rather small car, but by the time we arrive I am always on the verge of a nervous breakdown, let alone with hardly any preparation time. But after the year you had, I really think all of you deserved some well-earned, family- and snowfilled vacation! And by the looks of the above pics I think you succeeded. We had an impromptu (see I can do things Tori-style ;)) New Years Party with loads of family. The party was supposed to take place at my mother in law’s home, but she caught the flu and she asked me (and my home so to speak) to stand in. So everybody relocated, including seven mattrasses, double the amount of blankets and a massive pile of food and drinks. It was hectic but fun.

  • carmen Gonzalez

    TORI thank you so much , the kids are beautiful the family are all beautiful and the dog thank you for the beautiful pictures.

  • Lory Ann @OurMasonsJar

    How sweet!!! I love all the precious pictures and all the captions! Dean looks super tired-needs an Espresso!!! Stella is such a Star-always shining and posing! Finn is a little man. Jack is catching up with Dad! Thanks for sharing your special moments! But where are you Tori??? :) New Year’s for me…home with my Honey, my new Baby, and the Princess Pomeranian, wine and good food in our new home-PERFECT! xo

  • cheryl berg

    Awesome pictures as always.I’ve been to Apple Annies near Visalia,good food great service :-)

  • Boosmom

    Wow thats brave…4 kids and a road trip. I am on the fence about taking all of us to Vancouver Island (From Edmonton Alberta) its such a long drive, 17-20 hours. How did you do it, did you have a nanny with you or was it just you 2?

  • Chrissy Ryan

    Looks like fun!

    Ps… the chest clips look fine. I hate when people have to comment to make it look like you need their help. sheesh…

  • Ladydi

    Cool pics we usually go to the poconos in pennsylvania and snow tube this year we went to canada.

  • Silje

    Looks like fun Tori 😉 Thanks for the beautiful pics of the trip, and cute children :) I love this post !! I think my sun wood love a trip like this.

    Have a nice day, xoxo from pregnant mama.

  • Mauigirl09

    Too cool! Great idea and I love spontaneity! Thanks for sharing. Sure miss your show :-(

  • jogirl70

    Gorgeous family pics Tori. What a beautiful family you are! xx

  • Linda Clark

    So glad you and your family had a wonderful time. You are so down to earth. God bless you and your family.

  • MamaPaws

    Looks like so much fun.

  • JuJu

    looks like you all had a blast! great pictures!!! 😀