I pray that everyone is having a marvelous Monday!
I am looking forward to our upcoming homeschool convention! If you haven’t been to one I encourage you to attend at least one! I went to my first one last year. Despite having a 7 month old that was a bit cranky and had an off weekend since she was in a new environment I still managed to have fun! This year, since she is a year older I am looking forward to a weekend away with my husband, without any kids. I do miss the kids while I am away but thoroughly enjoy the few stolen moments that I get with D.
I didn’t make it to as many of the workshops that I planned. I had a bunch of workshops highlighted that I wanted to go to and I made it to ONE! Sadly, just one. I did purchase the audio files of the workshops and they were worth it! I have listened to some workshops over and over and over. Picking up something new every time I listen to them. Right now I am looking through workshops that I am interested in and oh boy! I am halfway through the workshops and I have about 3/4 of them highlighted! It looks like I will be buying the audio files again this year. 🙂 I already figured they would be on my purchase list. We get a huge discount if we purchase the files the weekend of the convention plus I got an extra discount because I am a member of the association.
Our convention is huge and they open the vendor hall for a few hours the evening before the main event starts. It is well worth going early if your local convention opens early! It took the shock off of attending my first homeschool convention. I think I would have been very overwhelmed if I walked in Friday morning, especially after the night we had with the baby, with it in full swing. Lots of people and lots of vendors!!! Another tip is to visit the vendor booths first without purchasing anything. Get brochures and catalogs if they have them and you think you might even be the slightest bit interested. Take them back to the hotel with you that night and look through them all. Make decisions on who you want to go back to see and also write down any questions that you may have. Build your purchase list from there. It helps cut down on the impluse purchases. I am not saying that they won’t happen but they are less likely to happen.
Bring a rolling cart to carry those brochures and any purchases! Brochures get heavy after a while! 🙂 Wal-Mart carries rolling carts with lids for an affordable price. There were a couple vendors that were selling rolling carts but they didn’t have lids and they cost the same amount as the one that we got from Wal-Mart with the lid. Ours folds down when not in use.
Bring your own bottled water and food! A small bottle was very, very expensive. I want to say it was $4! The water fountains didn’t work either. We had our own bottled water but a can of soda was $3. I was just recently reading that some convention centers requires the water fountains to be turned off as part of their rental agreement. Food was outrageous as well. We ate lunch there on the first day and decided to eat a brunch on the second day before heading over and then just waited until we were done for the day to go get dinner. This year I think we may pack a sandwhich and snacks because leaving and returning is just not practical due to the size of the convention and trying to find another parking space. Even if you don’t pack your lunch pack some snacks just in case you get hungry!
Do you have any convention tips?