General Conference is today! In my church, twice a year we gather in our homes or church buildings to watch or listen to our leaders speak to us via a big satellite broadcast from Salt Lake City, through talks, messages, and music. It is a big time commitment, lasting 8 hours in broken up sessions over the weekend. It's also a really special time to be filled with inspiration, personal revelation, and a resolve to improve yourself by serving more, loving more, being more patient, more honest, more giving, more loving, more dedicated. Troy and I look forward to it every year. Today's technology makes it really easy to look up the talks given, to review or read if you were unable to watch it live (such is Troy's case today since he had to work).
My family always had fun traditions to go along with conference when I was little. We didn't have the option of watching it in our homes, so we always got dressed up for all 4 sessions and had a great time eating out or shopping or going to the local craft shows in between sessions. But today, we can watch/listen via internet or TV without leaving the comfort of home. It took me a while to get used to watching it at home, it was harder to pay attention at first. There's always so many distractions at home. But I've learned to put those aside, and really make conference something special in our home. It's nice to have the extra spirit of conference surround us within the very walls which we live. I like to prepare by having a clean house, food to make, and meaningful activities for the kids, so its not just a regular day around here. I guess you could say I have high expectations for me and my family when it comes to conference. I feel like I need the counsel, the stories, the spirit I feel when I listen, to be present in my life. It's important to me to set aside special time to watch it together as a family, to teach our kids that listening to our church leaders is really important. It's amazing how our kids look forward to it, and I'm sure its because they recognize the spirit they've felt during conference, and they know its a special event. They love looking for things they recognize- songs they know, faces such as the prophet, and key phrases or words like baptism, Book of Mormon, the Holy Ghost, love, sharing, etc.
Anyone is welcome to watch. You can visit here to see it on the internet.
Here are the general conference traditions we've started as a family:
*building a tent/fort to snuggle and watch conference in (similar to the idea of how the ancient prophet, King Benjamin, would address his people, and they would gather in tents with the doors facing him so they could hear what he was saying, we don't always do this, but it can be fun).
*conference packets- There are several amazing ladies who have created beautiful packets for kids of all ages to work on so they too can participate. Here are links to activities I've printed off. Visit sugardoodle.net for more great ideas.
---here This packet comes from Scriptures4kids.com and is 21 pages long. A little tip: just print off the last 3 pages for a really cool apostle chain. I'll post a picture once my girls have completed it. It looks really fun!
---here I used to be in Jennifer Lund's ward in Provo. She in one amazing mom, and this packet is awesome!
---here A few great ideas from the blog Oopsey Daisy.
Anyone else out there have some fun General Conference ideas or traditions they'd like to share? I'm always on the lookout for new ideas!