Read to the bottom for a giveaway. Hey – wait! No skipping ahead. I worked hard on this post.
It’s been quiet here on our blog, but that doesn’t mean life has been quiet for our family. On the contrary, it’s been a whirlwind. Last weekend was Vision Forum’s long-awaited Baby Conference! Perry and I attended Thursday evening with just the baby.
On Friday he had to work, but the kids and I left the house early and stayed at the conference until mid-afternoon. We met a lot of friends, old and new, and managed to take in a few sessions. Then we checked into a hotel room and swam until it was time to to pick up my Hunney. We had planned to go back to the conference for the evening, but decided to take Deanna out for a birthday ice cream instead since it was her 17th birthday!
We were up and out early on Saturday morning since it was finally time for the panel on Managing the Logistics of a Large Family. The girls sat in on the session, while Perry was in and out – he was working as staff. My sister was there with her girls too, quite an accomplishment since they had to leave their house just after 6 AM. Is it just me, or do Rachael and cousin Alyssa look like they’re still half-asleep?
I was much less nervous by this time, and felt even better when the session started and I learned that we wouldn’t be taking surprise questions from the audience (sorry, y’all). Instead, Beall Phillips had prepared a list of questions, and we would all take turns answering each question. Better yet, I found myself in third place of four ladies, with Beall moderating. This gave me time to think about my answers.
Overall, I thought it went well. I have zero speaking experience, unless you count running for class president during my early public school years, and that was in front of 30 other 8yo’s, not 600 mothers and children. I know I said “um” a lot, but at least I never did the deer-in-the-headlights stare. Well, maybe once or twice, but not while I was actually holding a microphone so I’m trying to convince myself nobody saw.
Oh, and just for the record: we do about 3 loads of laundry per day, not week. I’m not sure who was in charge of my brain when I said that. I would love to go back and see the looks on the faces of the ladies who believed we really only do 3 loads/week.
I’m listening now to the rough audio from this session. That’s one of the perks of sleeping with the guy who is in charge of audio editing.
The first few questions (paraphrased slightly):
- What kind of preparation did you have for raising a large family? I found the answers to this question amazingly diverse!
- Would you describe yourself as a rigid scheduler, a fluid scheduler, or just fluid? We had surprisingly similar answers on this, though each had different reasons and methods for implementing our scheduling styles.
- Did you and your husband intentionally and conscientiously set out to have a large family? At what point did you realize you had a large family? Again, we each had a different take on this, but I was very touched by Victoria Botkin’s answer.
- Talk about your pregnancies for a minute: difficulties, blessings, things that you and your children learned. Diversity, diversity. Multiple pregnancies don’t wreck your body, but it’s not always easy for all of us. Complications don’t mean you can’t have a large family.
- Let’s talk about our husbands for a minute. Try to describe for everyone the level of participation your husband has in the day-to-day. Here is where my speaking skills failed me. My husband has such a servant’s heart, and I don’t think I expressed that very well. He has been such an encouragement to me during all the trials of family life, both as a source of wisdom and as a leader, taking charge in the home when we need him to do it but never micromanaging.
- Do you have any special tips for how to do laundry for a large household? Apparently my sock philosophy is gaining a following.