We rethought everything this past weekend at the Rethinking Everything Conference in the Dallas/Ft. Worth Metroplex of Texas. This was our 3rd year attending the collossal gathering of rethinkers including, but not limited to, unschoolers. I can honestly and quite exuberantly declare it the absolute best yet. Though the content of the conference has not changed much over its 14 years, the name now reflects the depth and variety of the conference sessions and the intensity of conscious intention, living, and creation of the speakers. Attendees are rocked in any number of ways as we continue to question and analyze cultural and societal messages, norms, and ideals.
Chris and I conducted a number of sessions and even added an impromptu session by request for those new to unschooling and conscious, connected parenting or just wanting to discuss any number of parenting and/or education related issues. We met so many interesting, supportive, conscious people that we are thrilled to now call our friends. Guess what? So did the kids!
While all of these amazing ‘adult’ sessions were weaving and overlapping throughout the days and evenings, so were there countless activities for kids of all ages. The kids (we joined them quite often as well) partook of Kid Village (a great big room filled with lots of toys, games, and activities), shaving cream sculptures (which led to body painting with the stuff), swimming, take-apart electronics, crafting magic wands and recycled jewelry, face painting, the Lego/Bionicle room (yes- a whole room FULL!), fairy house building, letter boxing, Ga-Ga ball playing, sewing/fashion creating, dress-up, science experiments, World of Warcraft and video game playing, and MORE! They re-connected with local and distant friends and made lots of new ones.
We’re already rethinking so much that it was wonderful to be in a place of such support and excitement about our lifestyle and changes. But the rethinking never really ends, does it? Chris went to John Strelecky’s (best-selling author and dynamic speaker) session entitled, “How to Travel the World on $40 a day” and is now super-inspired, excited, and firmly entrenched in the reality of trading the RV in for backpacks at some point and taking our adventures around the world. I went to two sessions conducted by Raymond Francis, author of “Never Be Sick Again”, and was both thrilled and shaken to discover even more information about the food we eat that will affect the evolution of the food we choose for ourselves and our family. The first thing to go was cow’s milk. We made the switch to almond milk right after the conference and are not looking back. No, thank you Dairy Council. Chris and I both attended Rupert Isaacson’s session following up on his book/documentary, “The Horse Boy”, which has us considering and appreciative of the dramatic rise in children who see the world differently- through the lens of autism, ADD, ADHD, hyper-sensitivity, and every other label that is handed out because a child differs from the collective, understood, manipulable standard.
Chris and I both stepped out a little more as well which was challenging and fun. I did a session about being in control of our own health and Chris headed up an unschooling dads’ rock band!
As always, some of our most impactful moments were spent in hallways, around the campfire, over beer, and lounging on the couches. It’s truly the connection with other people who seek to know themselves over the norm that bolsters our spirit and adds more threads to the weave which grows stronger and more conscious by the day. We LOVE RE! Below are some pictures of the event. It’s really just an overview as my camera spent most of its time in my bag as I was so busy living each moment that photographing them became secondary.