We decided at the last minute to go to the homeschool convention in the city, or at least the vendor hall part of it. So we loaded up the fam and headed in.
I pretty much knew what to expect and why I was going. You have to pay money just to get in to the vendor hall but it’s worth it because you get to pick books up and actually thumb through them, as opposed to just reading reviews of them online. The other big draw for me is that there are a ton of booths representing local venues offering stuff for your kids that you had no idea was available in your area until now. Things like homeschool choirs and tuba lessons and rowing teams.
The vendor hall is huge and by the time we had gone up and down every aisle I was plumb wore out. I was in such a daze that it was hard to stop and think carefully about what I wanted most to take a close look at and seriously consider buying. However, nothing I was considering was on any kind of huge “convention only special,” so I could always buy it later on the internet. So in the end I spent very little money, which is quite an accomplishment at one of these things.
I bought a couple of books from Todd Wilson-- “The Familyman.” I was well-familiar with him from The Old Schoolhouse magazine and emails, so it was kind of fun to see him in person. One of the things he does is homeschool cartoons that are extremely funny to a homeschooling mom right in the thick of it. Like the one where it shows a dad coming home from work and finding his wife hiding in her closet curled up in a ball—I sure have had days like that!
They also had the author of the “Hank the Cowdog” books there. My boys are Hank fans, so I bought them each a paperback and we had the author sign them. I’m glad the boys had the experience of meeting an author of books they enjoy.
A couple of other things to mention about the convention: I just like going to homeschool conventions because there is such a good feeling there. The people there are good people. The place is just bursting with happy families and it’s nice to be in the company of so many people who believe in the same things you do. Or maybe it’s just that you don’t feel quite as crazy when you see you’re not the only one!
Also, they had a section for homeschooled kids to set up booths to promote their own little businesses. They were selling things like homemade hair bows, tomato plants in pots that they grew from seed, duct tape wallets, and such. I was so impressed with these kids. They had well-set-up displays, they were polite and knowledgeable, and one girl I talked to was only eleven. It just made me think that maybe my kids are going to turn out okay after all.