Have you ever gone into something half-hearted? Thinking you'd be happy getting even a little out of if, not really expecting much at all? Well, that's what happened with me this year with the Ultimate Homeschool Expo. I had heard a bits and pieces about the expo in different circles, but being a new homeschool mom I didn't really know alot about it. As I mentioned in an earlier post, Randy and I had hoped to attend a convention this year for some direction and to see what some of the vendors had to offer as well as have the opportunity to hear/talk to speakers who have been in the homeschool community for several years. But as with most things lately, the money just was not there and we couldn't afford to travel to a large convention this year. Of course, as usual, we failed to rely on the fact that God had already worked things out for us before we even knew we needed Him to. FIVE YEARS before we needed Him to actually!!!
That's how long ago some amazing people began the Ultimate Homeschool Expo. When I originally heard about the expo I thought maybe I would buy a ticket as a supplement to another convention I planned to attend until money got tight and then the the $25.00 ticket to the UHSE started to look like my only option. So we decided we would buy the ticket and if it wasn't very beneficial we were only out 25 bucks! Besides, there were some freebies I would get so I thought maybe it would at least be a wash...
Little did I know, I was in for the surprise of my life! I have been so blessed by this expo! The freebies were great, but the real treasure was in the live and bonus audios! The live audio are offered with an open chat room as well. So not only are you able to listen to the speaker, but you get to meet, discuss and grow relationships with other parents that you would never have the time to do at a live convention. Plus, whatever you miss in the session while you're chatting it up with your new pals, you can listen to later as all live sessions are recorded and then uploaded to the membership site!
The host and owner of the expo Felice Gerwitz moderates the chat room and takes questions then at the end of the session relays all of those questions to the speaker and he/she answers them RIGHT THERE! Try to get that at a live convention! The speakers may have time for "a few" questions but here you actually get discussion. If you're still confused or your question wasn't completely answered just chat that in and Felice will dig a little deeper with the speaker!
I never thought about how chaotic a live convention would really be and how hard it would be to cultivate any relationships outside of those you had before you got there, but stop for a moment and think about it... I liken it to shopping on Christmas Eve. Everyone is rushing around trying not to miss that one thing they're looking for. Ironically enough, just like with Christmas isn't sharing our faith and growing God's kingdom what we're SUPPOSED to be doing? And yet, we're always hurrying around, no time for one another. Well I can honestly say that during expo week I could not wait until each session time so I could chat with my new sisters in Christ! We shared stories, both good and bad, prayed for and with one another and blessed each other with encouragement beyond measure! My cup truly overflows!
And TOPICS! Wow! There was such a wide range of topics that at first I wasn't sure where I wanted to start! Did I want parenting encouragement? Curriculum Guidance? Character Education and Leadership Direction for my Child? Stuff that was beyond my kiddo in age but would apply to my older niece? Help for my husband to be a leader in our home? My options were just endless! Thankfully they are all downloadable! Can you imagine going to a convention with only yourself and possibly your husband and trying to catch EVERY session you wanted to hear, some of them overlapping in times? I'm exhausted just thinking about it! As I said before I have been greatly blessed by this expo.
And you could be too! If you are interested, homeschool parent or not, in some really helpful and encouraging sessions on raising children in God's image while setting your own godly example I urge you to not just take my word for it... go check it out yourself! The membership site is still available and I promise you will not be disappointed!
Here's the link, go take a look!