Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Saved by 'Amazing Grace'

"I am not dead, nor doth I sleep"...okay, well I do sleep a lot, but that has nothing to do with my blogging abscence. That's mostly due to health problems and having no internet (which constitutes a pain in the butt, so maybe I should just group it all together with health issues).

I won't bother to update you with the last....well, 6, 8 months? Something like that. I won't bother, because, quite frankly, I don't remember most of it, BUT I DO remember last month!:

The first weekend of April was our Midwest Homeschool Conference in Cincinnati, Ohio. My best friends and I have gone the last couple of years by ourselves- and had a BLAST!! Very inspiring, nice break away from the family, TONS of curriculum to look over, and so on and so forth. Well, this year we decided to take the entire family (Christy and her family were going as well). The fact that they had childcare for both Ava and Aidan for both days, a full Teen-Track for the older three, and a performance by Tim Hawkins on Friday helped convince us this might be worth the whole gang piling in. I must admit, in the beginning I was kind of hoping that they would all hate it and not want to go back, then my 'girlfriend only vacation' would be saved. Only time would tell, I figured.

We stayed at the LivInn Suites, which was about a 15 min drive from the Duke Energy Center (where the conference was being held), but the cost was MUCH more affordable than anything close to it (even with parking figured in). I had everyone's schedule figured out (no, I didn't consult them) and gave them their list of classes they were supposed to attend along with a new notebook and pencil to take notes (yeah..right.) Scott and I were splitting up so we could attend all the speakers we wanted to. The above picture of the crowds give the slightest idea of what we were dealing with. The first year we went, there were about 3,500 people attending (that was just 2 years ago). This year the numbers almost reached 14,000. Oh yeah, that's A LOT of denim jumpers. They had no map of the rooms, so we meandered aimlessly until we found our places. We DID finally manage to meet up at lunch, where the kids were SO EXCITED to share about their classes. Their notebooks were FILLED WITH NOTES!!! Kate had brought her digital recorder she received for her birthday, and was taping all the sessions they went to. Scott had found some WONDERFUL classes/speakers as well. I was gob-smacked, as they say....somewhere. They took off right after lunch (they even forgot to take my very specific schedule with them-imagine that!) We got home late that night, exhausted, but elated. The next morning, the family was up and ready to go before 7 am!! Unfortunately, I felt like a big giant cat yack, so I stayed at the hotel until lunch, when they came back and picked me up. The second day was just as good as the first. Ava and Aidan couldn't stop talking about how fun 'Star Patrol' (heaven forbid we use the words child care) was and were running to get back. Once we arrived inside, the kids just took off like a rocket. No discussion of where we were supposed to meet when...nothing....just....gone. I tossed my carefully planned agendas in the nearest trash can. ....Stay Tuned for Part II.....

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