Jun 052012

Because the recap for the Teaching Parent’s Association Convention is going to be rather, um, long, I decided to break it up into a post for each day of the convention. I figured no one wanted to read yet another post in excess of a few thousand words…

For my first workshop on Friday, I chose to attend the seminar by the Institute for Excellence in Writing. It was presented by Phillip Miller and it totally confirmed my decision to use their Primary Arts of Language Writing for the Bugs. I really liked how it teaches the art of writing and it is mastery based, and this workshop made me fall in love. And I was astonished to learn of their 100% satisfaction money back promise. I learned how to use the program and I just simply fell in love. I can not wait to start using this in a few weeks with the Bugs for sure and probably the Beans too (since she hates being left out of anything).

I then attended a workshop by Character First about instilling and teaching our children the values we want them to have. I appreciate that there are people out there who have made a plan to help us parents make sure our children are raised with the virtues of obedience, dependability, responsibility and have written out some fun lesson plans/curriculum to aid us in our endeavor. This is something that is desperately needed for all of society unfortunately. While I did not purchase the Character First curriculum, it was great to sit in on a workshop with other like-minded parents who are seeking to raise children who are different from the world and who will grow up to be world changers.

Todd Wilson was our keynote this year and let me say, if you ever get a chance to hear him speak, please take it (and read his books. I’m in the middle of How to be a Great Wife Even Though You Homeschool). Todd is down to earth, real and funny. He gets his point across in a way that reaches across the different spectrum of people. He has the ability to reach out and draw you in with stories and humor and be applicable to many people at the same time with the truth. This weekend he spoke on not believing the enemy, not comparing ourselves to others and that when things get hard, that is when the good comes.

As homeschool moms, we have a tendency to believe that we aren’t good enough, our homes are messier than everyone else’s, that everyone else’s marriages are better than ours, that all the other children are smarter than ours. None of that is true. As women and homeschoolers, we need to stop listening to those lies about ourselves. We need to accept the fact that no one is perfect, especially not ourselves, and we are lying to ourselves when we think that everyone but us has it all together. No one has it all together all of the time. We need to accept ourselves for who we are, embrace being real to ourselves and find people we can be real with.

We also need to put a priority on our marriages. We can not be¬†successful¬†in teaching our children if we aren’t respecting, loving and honoring our spouses. Without a strong marriage, our families will not be strong. And our children will learn how to love their futures spouses from us. Are you being the wife your husband needs you to be? Are your daughters seeing you encourage and support your husband through everything? Are they seeing you choose to be his helpmeet, serve him and love him? Because they will follow your patterns for marriage. Are your sons seeing you with what I mentioned above? They will be choosing their future wives partly by how they see you treat their father. Do you want your son’s wives to treat your sons the way you treat your husband? Your children will pick up how you treat your spouse, and chances are they will treat their spouse the way you treat yours. Sobering thought, isn’t it?

I think I shall leave you with those thoughts in regards to marriage and being real with others. Think it through and decide if what you are doing is the legacy you want to leave your children. If you have any questions, you can leave a comment or shoot me an email. If you need help in this area, please find some books or a mentor to help you. If you have realized that you hold deep seated anger towards your spouse or there are other issues, please, please, please seek a qualified counselor to help you. Seeking help is not a weakness. It makes you stronger and will bring about the good.

Jun 052012

Wow. this past weekend was great. It was horribly busy, but still kind of relaxing, I learned a lot and had a wonderful time at the Teaching Parent’s Association annual convention, meeting up with old friends and spending time with family.

We got into Wichita at nearly one in the morning on Friday. Thankfully the girls went right back to sleep after they were carried in from the car and put down in their bed at Grandma’s. We got unloaded, made sure an alarm was set for the next day and then we crashed. It was quite the adventure getting to the convention center on Friday with the one way streets and most of them blocked off for the annual Riverfest. I got to attend quite a few sessions, wander the vendor hall and chat with people. I will say that this year it was very nice not having a lot of random strangers stop to give me hugs since our nametags state where we are from (last year was just a few weeks from the tornado and it was fresh in everyone’s mind). We got turned around trying to make it home that night and spent a half hour driving around trying to find our way out of the labrynith of one way streets.

Saturday, my alarm didn’t go off, but thankfully I woke up at the time I had set it for. We leave a few minutes early so we could stop at HubbaHubba’s favorite donut shop in Wichita. We get there as they are literally closing the streets for the River Run. So we sat and ate our donuts and watched people run past who obviously never eat donuts. We make it to the convention center a few minutes late so we wander the vendor hall, chat with some vendors and purchase the bulk of our curriculum. Of course, time escapes us and we realize halfway through the second session that we were missing that seminar too…oops. Then it is time for lunch so we go and get lunch, enjoy the last keynote, attend the last two sessions and help my friend Betty pack up her booth.

On Sunday we go to the church HubbaHubba grew up at and we find out that some friends of ours who moved from here recently attend there now. It was great seeing them and their children (the girls were ecstatic to see their friends). We make it home and have lunch and I crash. HubbaHubba came to wake me up at six.

Monday we went to the Exploration Place where they currently have a traveling Star Wars Exhibit. HubbaHubba and Beans went in to see it. Bugs didn’t want to go so we didn’t get the extra tickets for that and we played in the rest of the museum. We met the friends we saw at church there so our munchkins could have time together. We left after lunch time, stopped at Spangles (our favorite fast food in Wichita) and spent the rest of the day doing some chores at my Mother-in-law’s house. We finally leave at about eight at night and got home at midnight on the nose. We shuffled the girls in to bed (they never even noticed), unloaded most of the car and crashed ourselves.

So, today is catching up on laundry, watering the veggie garden, cleaning up from just dropping everything into the living room upon arrival home and relaxing some. And hopefully getting all my reviews and postings done for TPA.

I should go and fold some kitchen towels. And hang up our clothes. Plus I have to hammer in drainage holes in the old tin wash tub so I can plant it with lettuce. Maybe I should find room for our new school books too.

Talk to you all later. I have to get to work!

I’m a TPA Convention Blogger!

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May 092012

See that new button over there to the right? Looks pretty spiffy, doesn’t it? Want to know what it means?

Well, I get to be a blogger at the Teaching Parents Association Homeschool Convention in Wichita, KS June 1 and 2 this year. So, if you can’t make it, be sure to follow me on the blog and through Twitter and Facebook to get the scoop as to what all is going on, what is happening during the sessions and get a taste for the convention. This year’s main speaker is Todd Wilson of Family Man Ministries. He’s a hoot to read on his blog and I can’t wait to hear him speak in person. Plus there are a ton of other sessions, great fellowship and very nice vendor hall.

I can’t wait to share the convention with you all!