A few General Conference updates for April 2014. I have updated both the Conference is Awesome
(updated after 2014 April conference was over)
Although our conference participation has greatly improved over the last year it still has some rough patches. I spent most of my time trying to keep the little people quiet and focused, breaking up arguements and fights (because we wouldn't be who we are without a few), and rewarding active listening with a treat after each talk. I know you might not agree, but it's working for us and the children are more focused than they have ever been.
The "conference is awesome" folders are the best solution for us, although we still put of the big chart, and the little people pour through the topics throughout a talk. They listen for words they understand and change topics several times throughout the talk. They might hear the word sacrament and add it even if the talk is on sacrifice and then add the prophet photo a few seconds later. It's very sweet to see them working together and listening, even if it is for a treat at the end. Someday they will listen because they want to hear the words, Rocks recent choice is evidence of that. The older girls watch in my room where they can focus on the talks. It's a beautiful thing to watch your children's testimonies grow.
There is also plenty of spontaneous napping that happens from nearly everyone, except the babies of course. It wouldn't be conference weekend without a good nap.
For me conference is about listening to the overall spirit of what I hear and letting my mind be inspired. You can read more about my process and conference journals and notes here, but I decided to just do a little sketching during the sessions. One of my goals for the new year was to learn to really draw and part of that is just practicing; lots and lots of practicing.
I drew a little something during each session. It was something that I could stop and start at any point. They are not fantastic and I will be the first to acknowledge that I'm not an artist, but I quickly cleaned up the images for the downloads if you are interested. Each one is 5" x 7".
The sketch paper I used was nearly the same size as the moleskine so I trimmed it up just a little and used the washi tape method (see here) and added it in to the front of my journal. Now to fill in the rest as I review and study each talk over the course of the next 6 months.