Tag Archives: Family Economics Conference

We’re Going on a Trip…

to the St. Louis area in May, to attend the 2013 Family Economics Conference! We’re so thankful to the Lord for enabling us to attend again this year. The past two years have been such an amazing blessing, and a great encouragement to us as a family.

As we plan for and look forward to this year’s conference, I’ve been thinking a lot about the past two, and since I never posted about 2012’s, I thought I would take you on a brief picture tour of some of the highlights.

Wheaton College was a beautiful facility…

We enjoyed getting to meet and and talk with other like-minded families…

The speakers had wonderful, challenging messages to share from their hearts…

Singing praises to the Lord with the other 1,400 or so attendees was precious. I love that the coordinators planned the singing of hymns throughout the conference!

The audience response units, with the immediate rendering of the data in the slides, was a fun way to be involved and to see some interesting (and hilarious!) information about the families at the conference. Did you know that something like 6% of the families arrived by flying in with Mary Poppins?!

The panels with families talking about their experiences were really interesting and informative…

And people watching is, of course, always great sport – as evidenced by these three men sitting in the exact same way… 😉

Watching Amanda and Lady L practice with the choir for Liberty Day…

The Liberty Day celebration, held in conjunction with the conference, was a wonderful reenactment of the 2nd Virginia Convention and Patrick Henry’s “Give me liberty or give me death” speech. The music, costumes, acting, and most of all, remembering the Providential events in the founding of our nation, was beautiful!


And then there was the Colonial Dance! Much thought and prayer went into the decision to take part in the dance, and I’m so glad we did! It was a blessed time of fellowship and fun in a pure, family-centered environment. And great exercise!!!

I thank the Lord for these experiences and times together to learn and grow as a family. We’re all really looking forward to going this year, and desire your prayers that God’s will would be accomplished in this conference – for our family, and for every little detail and moment.

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Trip Preparations

Yikes! I am really out of the habit of posting! Of course we have been quite busy, too. 😉 We’ll be leaving in less than a week for the Family Economics Conference 2012… and I’M SO EXCITED! 😀 There are so many happy little details that I could ramble on about, but to sum it all up, God has abundantly blessed us in being able to take this trip and attend the conference. I’m also thrilled to be doing a lot of the food planning and prep for this trip, which I hope to be posting about tomorrow. But for now, here are a few pictures of what’s been going on over the past few days.

With some lovely weather early in the week, Lady L and I went for a bike ride

At the dining room table - a busy hub of our family-centered-homeschooling-lifestyle. Amanda helping Lady L with some schoolwork while Mom works on something special...

Sewing Colonial dresses! It's been a "dream" of ours for awhile to make period clothing and go to/host historical events (history is a favorite subject), and this year, we will have the opportunity to do so by attending the Liberty Day Celebration held in conjunction with the Family Economics conference!

Lady L's dress, prior to hemming and finishing touches

Once again the dining room table is a mix of sewing station and school room

Practicing for piano lessons with Amanda

And lastly, trying out a new recipe for the trip - a sneak preview of tomorrow's post! Lady L did a great job putting it together and it was delicious!

Last of the Family Economics Conference Pictures

{I apologize for the lateness of this, and other posts – I have had this one half-written for many weeks now! The kitchen remodel progress is extremely slow, and we are currently dealing with a mystery bunny illness. More on that later.}

Conference location, on the NCSU campus

The first session in the morning was by Scott Brown on “Unless the Lord…”, and was very refreshing after the previous day! 🙂

It was a really nice day, so we ate lunch outside in the parking lot (instead of in the car, like the day before)

The Wintons played a few more songs in the evening

The family we had met in the hotel on Thursday evening - inspired by the Duggars, we are trying to take pictures of all these people that we meet and keep a scrapbook of them

Trying to decide how we are going to get where we need to go (there was a slight change in plans, so the Mapquest directions we had printed didn't apply anymore!)

Friends that we hadn't seen in nearly 5 years! 😀 (clicking on the picture will make it bigger)

Invading our friends' living room for the night


On Sunday morning there was a sermon by Kevin Swanson, and a wonderful time of testimony and sharing by the men (held at Binkley Chapel, above)

Hope Baptist Church (the Brown's church) then provided lunch for anyone who could come - we appreciated having a meal that didn't come out of our cooler before we started the long drive home.

Family Economics Conference – Friday, 1st day

After registration, waiting for the first session to start, and feeling slightly overwhelmed already - it seemed like we were constantly in the way!

Let me preface this post with the simple truth that we have never been to any Christ-centered conferences before. Truthfully, I was not entirely sure what to expect, but I was thinking more along the lines of a casual homeschool convention atmosphere. There is a big difference between homeschool conventions, and a conference like this one. It was much more intense and focused than I had expected, and I was abundantly blessed by it!

During the opening session, we found out that the conference was mostly organized and run by 20-somethings, and I saw everything with new eyes. With that in mind, one could even begin to appreciate the small mistakes and minor technical issues. Just the fact that these young people were doing the hard work with such a willing attitude, probably knowing that they would inevitably have issues, and doing it so well, was astounding and noteworthy.

When talking to a friend about the conference, the first thing that I could think to say was that it was an amazing weekend! I would go on to describe the weekend with sentences like these:

  • Quiet, despite the noise that 1200 people will inevitably make
  • Well-behaved children who helped one another, and enjoyed being around each other
  • Young men and women happy to be with their parents, joining with them in their vision
  • Speakers with passionate conviction and boldness in their messages
  • Encouraging focus on putting the Lord and His will for us above all else – yes, even our definition of “success”

At one point during the opening session, Kevin Swanson was making a point, and (though it’s out of context here, because I didn’t write anything else down) he said, “You are turning your child into something weird!” As I was looking forward, I saw two mothers turn lovingly to their daughters and say something with a smile and hug. It was so sweet!

On Friday, I was also able to meet an online friend that I had recently become acquainted with. It was wonderful to put a face, voice, and family to your name, “Cayt”! 😀

Below are some notes I took during the conference sessions, and a few pictures as well.

Mr. Moore giving a short presentation on marketing, before the whole panel began answering questions on sales and marketing.

Bill Roth, on Entrepreneurial Bootstrapping:
For a successful business, you need to have a remarkable product – in order to do this, you must know the expectations of your market, and exceed them. This produces “remarkability” – a product worthy of notice and remark.

Some interesting statistics from Kevin Swanson’s sessions…

Over half of college graduates are not working in the field for which they were trained.
Over half of college-trained people are not working a job that requires a college degree.

12% bread-winning mothers in 1970, 39% women today

54% of managerial positions are now filled by women, up from 30-some % in 1970

Mr. Swanson also shared how his children “fight” over who will get to take care of their parents when they are older, and our family just smiled at each other – an almost duplicate scene takes place in our home every now and then! 🙂

Who knew a panel discussion on agriculture and real estate could evoke such expressions?!

It was so wonderful to hear 1200 people stand up and sing a few hymns over the weekend! One of our favorite parts. 🙂

During the last session on Friday, there was a slight mishap! The backdrop collapsed onto the Hernandez Family!

But Mr. Hernandez just went back to speaking, and the staff took care of it. No one was hurt, and it looked like the kids thought it was bunches of fun. 😉

Eric Weir, sharing his amazing testimony

The last keynote session of the day

Friday at lunch and right before the last session, The Wintons played, and though we’re not normally fond of bluegrass, I can say that we all truly enjoyed it!

It was interesting to watch the official photographers at the conference, and then to see their end results. I came to a personal understanding and resolution, and though it was already brewing in my mind, the conference aided in making my thoughts clearer: taking pictures makes me excited, and capturing that one good shot makes me ecstatic, but I really need to master the art of photography. There is a big difference between someone with passion, and someone with both passion and knowledge. Though I’ve already been reading books/websites, and trying to teach myself, I learn best by observing someone else and having it explained to me. Where this will lead, I’m not sure, but it would be really nice to find a mentor in the photography field. I’ll be praying over that.

Mentorship, by the way, was a topic discussed at the conference. An interesting new online program was shared, and I was very intrigued by the emphasis placed on this method of training. But more on that soon!