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Families Again
Sunday, 11 April 2010
Top10 Things from This Year's Big Homeschool Convention
Mood:  a-ok
Topic: General

Okay folks! I told you all that I would write a post about everything that happened at this years Big Homeschool Conference in Cincinnati (The Midwest Homeschool Conference to be exact). Well I always try to keep my promises. I'm sure that this will be the first of many posts that have to do with our first fantastic homeschool conference experience. Since it was our first, I wanted to do something different to commemorate it. So I've decided to write a post about the top 10 most memorable things about our adventure. They could be good, or they could be bad but they are all memorable. Here goes - in typical David Letterman fashion.

10. John Allen and I running three blocks from our parking garage to the Duke Energy Center because he had to desperately use the restroom. We had gotten stuck in a traffic jam on the way there.
9. Switching hotels because our first hotel double charged us and was trying to bill us for over $600!
8. Soaking in a hot tub after a long day at the convention.
7. Getting to hear Doug Philips speak LIVE and meet and talk with his oldest son, Joshua! Yes, a new adventure is coming!
6. Spending time with my oldest, John Allen. He came with me every day to the convention and we had a blast.
5. Going to the Creation Science museum. More pictures on this later! (This was actually tied for first, but I wanted to group all of the convention ones together). Thanks Barbara for helping us out!
4. Walking around the convention exhibit hall.
3. Getting to meet a lot of the vendors that we got to review - including -  the great folks from Virginia Soaps and Scents (they really are great), the guy who does the Web Design for Kids CD's (he's really nice as well), Stephen Guffanti from Rocket Phonics (Joshua really liked him - he even thanked him for creating Rocket Phonics), and other great vendors that we reviewed like All About Spelling, Maestro Classics, Artistic Pursuits and more.
2. Meeting some great new vendors like the guys from Lockrobots. John Allen loved them and spent hours (and I mean hours) at their booth. He became such a good seller for them that they let him come behind the counter a few times. At the end of the conference they gave us a 70 piece Lockerbot set! They may even sign up for the Crew this next year but you will be hearing about them a lot more before then. I promised them I would do a review for Lockrobots even before they do the Crew thing.
1. And the number one thing that I enjoyed doing was meeting up with my friends from the TOS Homeschool Crew. Meeting Heidi (the head of the Crew), Brenda (her faithful assistant), Penny (my first mate this year) and all of the rest of the great crew members was a real highlight. Thanks everyone!


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Posted by tink38570 at 9:45 PM CDT
Updated: Monday, 12 April 2010 6:24 PM CDT
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Saturday, 10 April 2010
It's Over - But it was Fun While it Lasted!
Mood:  blue
Topic: General

The Midwest Convention is over for this year! But, we had a lot of fun! No time to tell much about it, but I do have a couple of pictures of me with some of the TOS Homeschool Crew. Hint, hint...I'm the one with the mustache and the orange shirt.




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Posted by tink38570 at 10:48 PM CDT
Updated: Sunday, 11 April 2010 8:42 PM CDT
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Friday, 9 April 2010
Men's Monday Meme - What Would You Do If...
Mood:  mischievious
Topic: Men's Monday Meme

Ok! It's been a busy week! If you've been following along, you know that I've been at a really big homeschool convention this week. So, I really haven't had time to even think about a question, let alone post one. However, in the past few days, one of my blogging friends has been having an exciting time. Her only child, a daughter, is 16, and she thought that she was done having children. But, lo and behold, she is having crazy cravings, she's been more tired recently, etc. All the signs that she might be pregnant again, So, here's this week's question. It's not a hard question, kind of a fun one, so I think you will have plenty of time to answer it.

What would you do if your kids were grown and your wife told you that she thought...more than thought...was pretty sure that she was pregnant?

Don't forget the rules:

  1. This is a man's meme, so the answers must be the answers from a man. Either the man can answer on his blog, or a wife can interview her husband for her blog. However, if the wife puts it on her blog, she must stay true to what her husband said.
  2. You are encouraged to put one of the Men's Monday Meme buttons found to the left on your blog. Just copy the code below the button of your choice. The more folks who link, the more readers you may have to visit your blog.
  3. You may answer the question any time during the week up through next Monday. After you answer the question, add the address to your post to the Mr.Linky below. If you could, please only add the direct link to the post to make it easier for readers to find the entry.
  4. My answer along with a new question will be posted next Monday. The new Mr. Linky will be added at midnight Monday night.

And here's the new Mr. Linky:



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Posted by tink38570 at 11:27 PM CDT
Updated: Sunday, 11 April 2010 8:45 PM CDT
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Thursday, 8 April 2010
We're Here!
Mood:  incredulous
Topic: General

Have you ever been goo-goo eyed? You know ~ walking around wide eyed in wonder like you are in a daze? Well, that's how John Allen and I were tonight as we were walking around the exhibit hall at the Midwest Homeschool Convention at the Duke Energy Convention Center here in Cincinnati. It is amazing! And we haven't even been to hear a speaker yet. The exhibit hall is huge. We just perused it. We wanted to just walk around to get an idea of what was there. We talked to a few people, but not for long and in the hour that we were there, we didn't even see half of it! John Allen was giddy. Every time he saw a company that had curriculum that he liked he had to say something to the people. We can't wait to go back tomorrow and to see more exhibits and talk to more people. So far we have visited the TOS Booth and talked with my boss TOS Heidi. As nice in person as she is in emails and the Crew Forum. We've seen the Vision Forum booth, but haven't talked with Doug Philips yet. We saw the great folks from Virginia Soaps and Scents. We've seen the booths from Artistic Pursuits, Sonlight, Rocket Phonics, and many, many more. There was a chess booth that had curriculum that was based on chess, there was a scale model of Noah's Ark and scale models of dinosaurs. And this was just in one hour! Can you tell I'm excited? I've never seen anything like it! The above picture is just a fraction of last year's exhibit hall. This year's hall is much bigger with even more exhibitors! I'll tell you more tomorrow!

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Posted by tink38570 at 10:06 PM CDT
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Wednesday, 7 April 2010
Special News Alert - Be On The Lookout
Mood:  energetic
Topic: Homeschool Product Review

This is a special BOLO (Be On the Look Out). It seems that famous historical people from all over the world and from all time periods have mysteriously been time warped into modern times and into different countries than they are from. And, what's worse, is that they have all gotten amnesia. They don't know who they are! Your mission ~ if you choose to accept it ~ is to join the famous explorers, Wiglington and Wenks and travel around the world to locate these people. They could be inventors, politicians, heroes, religious figures, scientists, musicians...you name it. You need to find them, and help them regain their memory. How do you do that. Well...
  1. First you need to go to http://www.wiglingtonandwenks.com/  and sign up for either a free membership or a paid membership. A paid membership will allow you to gain access to some of the special features that are only available if you buy one of the membership plans. They are reasonably priced at $5.99 for one month, $16.99 for three months, $29.99 for six months or $59.99 for one year. There are also some extra charges for special costumes and accessories that you can buy.
  2. Then you need to go to Wiglingtontown and find the Traveling Academy in order to get your passport to travel.
  3. After you've obtained your passport you can head out to find the lost historical figures. They could be anywhere, so be on the lookout wherever you are.
  4. To help them regain their memory, you have to find items that belong to them. They could be articles of clothing that they wore, inventions that they made, things that they used...you'll know them when you see them. Once you find these things, you bring them back to the owner to help them regain their memory.
  5. Beware of Count Cannaregio and his minions. Every good plot and every good game must have it's evil character.
  6. Along the way you can do a lot of fun things like:
  • play special games
  • meet and chat with other travelers
  • buy and wear special costumes
  • discover new areas
  • learn new things
  • buy your own island and build your own mansion
  • organize virtual parties for all of your new virtual friends
  • the fun is really limitless

Check out this neat video to find out more:




So, what are you waiting for? Head on over to Wiglingtontown right away to start searching and start having fun! Just click here or on any one of the hi-lighted links.

Special note to parents - My kids loved Wiglington and Wenks. I loved it as well. Finally an educational game to take the place of these popular on-line virtual worlds where all you are doing is playing pranks or battling one another. With Wiglington and Wenks, your kids actually learn something! Imagine that...learning something on the internet Surprised!

There are a couple of caveats that I feel I must mention. Although, by and far, Wiglington and Wenks is a great educational game, it is still fairly new and the company is still in the process of working out some of the kinks.

The ability to have conversations with other members is one area that still has some flaws. As of right now, if there is any inappropriate behavior that  you notice, you are to report it to the administrator and they will take action ASAP. Unfortunately, until they take action and until they come up with a system where foul language or inappropriate remarks can't be made, your children still may encounter them occasionally. My children, however, never encountered anyone like that (at least they never did while I was watching).

Another area that is worth at least a slight mention is the choice of some of the historical figures. Although most homeschool families are very grounded in their education and beliefs, one or two characters may not be of their liking. One character that comes to mind is Charles Darwin. The talk (at least all the talk that I could find) is mild regarding evolution or anything like that. I just felt like, as a reviewer that is reviewing for primarily homeschool families, it should be mentioned so that the aforementioned homeschool families are not surprised when they see some characters that they may think worthy of being in the game.

Those are the only two negative areas, albeit slight, that I felt worthy of mention. All in all, I found nothing really objectionable and my kids enjoyed playing it. Again, to get to the Wiglington and Wenks game, click here. To find what some of the other TOS Crew members thought about Wiglington and Wenks, click here. Happy Homeschooling.

As a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew, I was given a free one month membership to the game Wiglington and Wenks in order to try out and review on my blog.

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Posted by tink38570 at 11:23 PM CDT
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