Project Mom 2012 – my recap

Project Mom 2012, Dallas
Do you remember where I said I would be this weekend? That’s right, Project Mom 2012 in Dallas! The conference began on Friday night, although I did not attend until Saturday. On Friday night, most of what I missed was a demonstration by The Crockin’ Girls of some of their amazing crockpot recipes from their new book The Crockin’ Girls Slow Cookin’ Companion: Yummy Recipes From Family, Friends, and Our Crockin’ Community, which was available for purchase at the conference even though it’s not officially available in stores yet!

I arrived at the conference in Allen, Texas a little before 9am. Everybody got these fun Vera Bradley reusable bags full of coupons and such.

Vera Bradley reusable bag, Project Mom 2012

The first session contained a few speakers to encourage us as moms. Here I am with my fellow Dallas Moms Blog contributors, getting ready for the conference to begin!

Project Mom 2012 – I look way too excited

Then we broke out into smaller sessions. My first session was “Parenting Your Preschooler” by Lynley Phillips, who is also a local Dallas blogger. I failed to get a picture of this session, but it was a nice overview of respectful parenting. I was encouraged to note that I actually do most of the things she suggested to be good practices for parenting preschoolers. Maybe these tactics will start actually working one day??

We took a break for lunch and the next session was “Picture Perfect Photography”. We were a little late for this one, so I missed the speaker’s introduction, but she was a professional photographer. She gave some good tips on using the “rule of 3’s” to plot your photos before you take them, and some simple lighting tips as well. I liked this session because she gave tips that could be implemented with any camera, not just a fancy DSLR.

Then there was a quick break, which I kind of overestimated. There were a ton of vendors set up in the hallways throughout the conference. Baby clothing, purses, makeup, home organization tools, even a bra fitting lady! I was very tempted to purchase one particular item. I had a quick conversation with the shop owner and hope to try and feature this fun item on my blog some time very soon!

The Dallas Moms Blog crew in the vendor area at Project Mom 2012

My last session was “Meal Planning”. You know that I’ve had several different versions of meal planning in the past, and I still use a little bit of my own system in addition to the iPhone/online app Food On The Table. This session was maybe a little vague – more of an overview of meal planning, rather than practical tips. One main point that I appreciated: your meals don’t have to look like another family’s meals. Mine definitely don’t! My take-away from this session was a hand-out they gave each of us, a list of five meals we could write down that were family favorites and quick to prepare. The idea is to have ingredients for those five meals on hand at all times. It’s a great strategy for preventing last-minute fast-food binges!

The closing session was possibly my favorite part. The first was an interview with Katie Hamilton, wife of Texas Rangers baseball player Josh Hamilton. I do not follow sports in any way, so I had no idea who he was or who she was, but she was very nice and engaging and funny, and I always appreciate hearing from other moms. She shared some of their day-to-day schedule challenges and how their family is flexible to deal with it all. I love to see inside someone else’s life, it always gives me good ideas for my own family.

Katie Hamilton at Project Mom Dallas 2012

The final speaker was Kat Lee of InspiredToAction.com. Again, someone I had not heard of but was blessed to hear. I wish I could write all the things she told us about being a Purposeful mother. I do have the main points from the handout: 1) know your value, 2) know your plan, and 3) press on! I tweeted one point that I particularly loved:

you are a good mom! - there is no try, if you are doing, it's ok if it's not perfect: press on! - Kat Lee

Kat’s closing comments were summarized much more eloquently by The T-Shirt Mama in her Project Mom recap (a fellow DallasMomsBlog.org contributor!).

All in all, it was a good little getaway with some great reminders for any mom. If you get a chance, I’d love to see you there again next year!

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