I feel like I have been writing this post in my head forever.
Although it has only been a week since the conference!
All the organisation, the planning, the anxiety...and just like a wedding, it was all over in the blink of an eye.
I truly have no idea where to start in terms of writing this blog post.
Do I start by telling you about the extraordinary families who made their way to our town?
Do I start by explaining how Dr John Carey and his wife Leslie will always hold a special place in my heart?
Should I just fill this post with photos?
Perhaps I could write about the generosity of the volunteers, the people that helped me make this all happen?
I think I might just start by saying that I can't believe that it is all over! For two years this conference has taken up a very large space in our lives. The planning and the fundraising and the making it all come together. As someone who has some anxiety issues (that would be me by the way), I still sometimes can't believe I managed to do it all. Of course, I couldn't have really if it wasn't for Faye, David and Jules.
So how awesome was the conference? Bloody awesome!!
It went a bit like this:
Friday night we started off with our Meet and Greet BBQ. It is a casual way to catching up with each other and welcoming the new families into our group. By all accounts the tucker was good and everyone was excited to see each other! John and Leslie (our guests of honour) also arrived to mingle with us and start to get to know us. Apart from a slight mishap about where they were staying (they didn't know where to go), everything ran smoothly. I started to relax slightly, despite the high temperature that I was chewing Panadol for. It was just wonderful to see everyone again. Very emotional.
Saturday we had our wonderful guest speaker John Carey speaking. He shared with us lots of valuable information and told us about the research being conducted into the 4p- syndrome. Families started having their individual sessions with him. Lunch was plentiful and the kids were happy. We had a parent guest speaker share her experiences about guardianship once her daughter turned 18 which gave everyone food for thought and insight. That night we shared a meal at Sovereign Hill. The food was yummy and the disco was lots of fun! Tired Tired Tired families.
Sunday we listening to Mel speak about 4p Aussie Kidz and she announced that the first round of funding was open Dec 1st. How exciting!!! Mel and Luke have worked so hard and should be proud of what they have achieved. I look forward to supporting them more next year and will run in the Run Melbourne (eek, better start training). We had our AGM and elected Liv to be our president! Well done to Liv, I know she will do a fantastic job!!
Sunday night many families got together for an informal BBQ. We just.couldn't.go because we were all exhausted and asleep.
Monday we had our family day out at Sovereign Hill. That was lots of fun as people panned for gold (some people-not mentioning any names David-refused to stop panning until they got a sprinkling of gold dust).
We then had another informal BBQ.
Ryley, by this stage, was beyond it and he vomited. So we went home to sleep.
So there you have the brief version of how it all went down. We welcomed many new families to our support group this time and I hope they all had a wonderful time. It is always a big step to come along to an event like this. It is a very big 4 days emotionally.
I know I have thanked all the people that helped me through FB. So I won't individually list them all again. But to everyone who helped me make this happen, whether it was through supporting our fundraisers, supporting us, helping us over the weekend...
There a lots of photos on Facebook at the moment. If you go to the Blogaboutabloke FB page I will tag some photos there. You will have to 'Like' the page to see them though I think! The click on the photos section.