I grew up skiing the Tahoe area as a kid. I've been to every resort from Heavenly to Squaw, and I've stayed on every side of the lake. As a teenager, I loved South Shore (Heavenly). After high school, I loved to go to North Shore and party with my friends who had houses on the lake. I still really like North Shore, but now that I have 2 kids, I REALLY like the West Shore (Homewood area).
I took the family to HomeWood in 2007 between xmas and New Years, and it didn't even seem like a Holiday week - it seemed more like a weekday. The crowds were small, and the only lift line I ever waited in was for the rope tow on the bunny slope. I waited 2 times, and then decided my 2 1/2 year old daughter could handle the triple chair to the top - she skiied the flat top part on her own (I controlled her speed with a harness), and then she skiied down on my shoulders when we hit the steeper face.
I would love to go back to Homewood every year during this time if I can. We used www.VRBO.com to find a great rental cabin.
Of all the ski resorts around Lake Tahoe, Homewood Ski Resort on the west shore is the closest to the lake. Its base is only about 100 yards from the shore. That means that as soon as you are on the slopes, you will be rewarded with the most magnificent views of the lake.