Whew, last week was fun! I presented at the SLC TJED Family Forum with my friends the Bowlers, to the youth. We spoke about the Fourth Turning and the Hero Generation. (The whole presentation was born when I took my son to the Youth for Freedom Conference last June and finally got to meet the famous Bowlers who my sister-in-law has been telling me about for years. You never what plans will hatch when you meet other homeschooling moms who are reading similar books as you.)
(Diann Jeppson and Jodie Palmer, the founders of the TJED SLC Family Forum through http://tjedmarketplace.com)
I totally forgot to take any pictures when I did have a free moment so you will have to enjoy pictures I have of my family life.
I was going to promote the whole thing more on this site, like I did on my TJED site (http://tjedlibrary.com) but I just didn’t have time. The day before the Saturday classes was especially crazy. We were doing Saturday chores, plus I was gone in the morning, plus I still wasn’t quite ready for my talk the next day, and we had to get groceries and I had to pack the toys up that I was bringing for the Love of Learning Center the next day. It’s funny how sometimes the day before my family has a big event, like leaving for a trip, things get really behind schedule and everything feels like it’s going to fall apart but then somehow it all works out and things fall into place.
I heard Diann Jeppson mention the Wednesday before that she needed a videographer for the Leslie Householder Genius Boot Camp event on Friday. I offered my husband and my son to do it, but then my husband didn’t want to do it so I took his place. I’ve been really wanting to do her Boot Camp for years. This one was an abridged version, but even at the incredible price I couldn’t afford it. Now a way presented itself for me to see it, as the videographer would get in for free. I figured my baby was old enough (19 months) to have me gone for half a day. He is nursing, (notice I didn’t say “he is still nursing”) as I like to nurse through toddlerhood. Toddlers who are breastfed are so healthy. My oldest son stayed for the afternoon and filmed.
My baby was happy while I was gone with his older brother tending. He had fun playing in the big hole that his brothers have dug up in the backyard garden area. I was pleased to find out that the hotel where the event was, the Sheraton, was the same place that I went to try out for Jeopardy! five years ago when my daughter was a baby. I wrote about that experience here http://www.llli.org/nb/nbnovdec07p272.html. Some pleasant memories came back to me of that time when my husband helped me out by being my root system to my Tree of Life mothering tree.
It was a lot of fun to watch Leslie. Most of the stuff I had heard before but I gleaned a few new nuggets of wisdom. I especially liked watching the activity where she had the students involved with the Stickman figures taped to the floor. It was a clever idea and one that helps me. At first, they didn’t have a decent tripod to hold the camera so I was having to hold it. After a half hour I started silently praying that someone would get a good tripod. Leslie’s husband taped the camera to the tripod, making it flat with a bottle of white board cleaner. I had to turn the whole tripod because the camera could not be moved separately. My prayers were answered when this guy came back with a tripod he had just gone out and bought. It turned out the guy was one of the speakers to the youth the next day, Eric Proffit. His story sounds amazing from the bio and I can’t wait to listen to the download of the talk, since so far my youth have not been good at telling me what they heard.
It was fun to see a lot of people I know there. My teenage daughter’s Thomas Jefferson Youth Certification (TJYC) mentor was there, as well as Caralee Ayre, my Nourishing Traditions mentor (see http://amodernpioneeringfamily.blogspot.com/search?updated-min=2011-01-01T00%3A00%3A00-08%3A00&updated-max=2012-01-01T00%3A00%3A00-08%3A00&max-results=3).
Also my friend Kim who has done so much car pooling for me driving my son who is her son’s age. They both did TJYC together, ballroom dance, and Open High School last year. I also saw my friend Tammie who mercifully stepped in and drove my son down to Williamsburg’s Elevation last year with her daughter and their other classmates. I ran into an old acquaintance from my past as well. We knew of each other because we grew up in the same ward but weren’t close friends, being four years apart, but now whenever I see her at TJED events I stop and talk and it feels like we were best of friends. She was popular and a cheerleader in our former lives and a glamorous Laurel when I was a lowly Beehive. She is 44 and just had her ninth baby. Last time I saw her, a year ago, she said she wanted another baby but her husband didn’t. Apparently she talker her husband into it because she had a darling, chubby baby boy with her. I have never seen such a big baby! He was so cute! Almost as cute as my darling baby boy!
This woman absolutely adores babies like I do and wishes she could have a million. We commiserated over the fact that yes, babies are cute, but they grow into demanding, challenging children, who need more than nursing. “If only I could freeze them when they are this small!” she said, about her relatively small baby. At 3 months he is 14 pounds, even though she said he was born prematurely at 3 pounds. He has made up for it really well. His cheeks were so big they looked like he was hiding golf balls inside of them. I just wanted to scoop him up and smother him with kisses. I always love it when older mothers like me keep having babies. Who says that you have to be done with three or four? Who says you can only “handle” five or six? That’s a whole ‘nother topic for another day.
Anyway, I somewhat reluctantly left the party, I mean seminar, and my son, hoping he would do his duty when it was time to break away from his Williamsburger friends, to film Leslie, and went home to a huge list of chores. I still had to have a phone conference with the Bowlers to finalize things. Things were so crazy with them leaving St. George that we never had the phone conference. But Amy’s husband Kent, worked on the slides for the powerpoint as they drove. Thank goodness for laptops and wireless Internet. I had emailed him some slides that I made on Open Office Impress, a new skill I recently learned but still struggle with. He couldn’t email me back with the whole powerpoint he compiled from a McDonalds because the file was so huge. Thank goodness for my teenage daughter’s leadership. She suggested I use Google Docs. Ahhh, perfect. Now we could collaborate much better. He could see what I was sending and I could see the changes he made. He unified all the backgrounds of all the slides the four of us made to make them pretty. What a great guy!
The next day, Saturday, was fun too. We got up bright and early at 4:30 AM and left by 6 AM. The whole family came this time. My two oldest teens were helping with check-in for the youth and had to be there by 6:30 AM. and my husband was helping with the keynote check-in. The four youngest kids were to be with me all day in the Love of Learning Center. I agreed to help in exchange for all the downloads of all the presentations. The kids just kept coming, and Mary Ann, the organizer of the center and the Home School Coach (see http://home-school-coach.com), said we had 140 kids. I was going to take photos but I literally did not have time to take pictures because of my babysitting, er, facilitating of learning duties.
I think everybody in TJED Land decided to take advantage of this service at the last minute, since Mary Ann said the week before that only 30 kids were registered. At 9 AM I looked at my watch and thought to myself, “It seems like we have been here a long time. It’s only 9?! This day is going to be looong.” It helped that I got a break at 11 to go give my presentation and then we had lunch. All the kids had to go to their parents for lunch so everybody got a break.
I was sad to miss Jim Ferrell’s keynote speech in person. This guy is amazing! I read the Peacegiver, a book he wrote, last year and loved it. It took me awhile to get into it but once I did it really helped me. I also love the book he wrote, Finding the Hidden Christ in the Old Testament, It’s so beautiful. I also love the speech he gave at SVU, an LDS-based liberal arts school. He basically says we can’t be happy unless we acknowledge that we are broken and need God. God the Father, through God the Son, gives us new hearts to fix our broken hearts through the atonement. Listen here http://svu.edu/mp3/2008-06-06-james-ferrell.mp3
The Bowlers and I spoke to about 100 14-15 year olds. They gave us a standing ovation! I definitely felt the Spirit in that room as Brad and Amy and Kent shared their stories of unselfish heroes from World War II: Kent’s grandfather, Irene Sendler, Guy Gaboldon, and the Three Against Hitler. I felt disappointed in myself that I spent my time the night before looking for pictures for this blog instead of practicing one last time to add a line that I ended up leaving out during my part of the presentation. I wish I had said the line about the importance of youth, the up and coming Hero Generation, knowing who the enemy is for the upcoming crisis/battle. I did suggest to them that they learn who the enemy is, but then I didn’t say more about that. Now I am wishing I had said, “May I suggest that the enemy is the part inside each of us that wants the government to take care of us instead of being self-governing.” That’s code for,
“Wake up guys! Our government is nanny state socialism, which is just as dangerous as communism, since they can both lead to tyranny. It’s time for you guys to throw it off in the Fourth Turning Crisis and restore our limited government founded by the Constitution. Study your little buns off and get really educated so you can fight in the courtroom, the legislature, and resist any imperialistic wars that the government asks you to fight!”
Oh well, maybe next year. My parents attended my session and that made me very nervous so I wasn’t saying everything in my head and heart. The TJED Family Forum is so much fun! I am sooo looking forward to those downloads so I can hear all the presentations I missed plus all the rest.