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Wednesday, July 1, 2015

DisAbility Megaconference 2015

Last year was our first year to attend the Mississippi DisAbility Megaconference in Jackson, MS and we really enjoyed it. We were excited to get to go for our second time this summer. We headed down to Jackson on Wednesday, June 17th. The Jackson Zoo stayed open late for a special Dream Night event for the conference attendees. It was so cool!  They had all kind of food and drinks (for free!), performers such as magicians, and of course cool animals to look at. There was even a group of local cheerleaders who greeted us and cheered for everyone as we walked into the zoo. The kids loved that. 

This was literally the first thing we saw when we walked in the gate. Always better to just conqueror your fears right off the bat and go on about your business. ;). This is a red tail boa, and she actually wasn't horrible. 

Here we are petting a turtle, which has never been frightening to any of us but Selah was hanging back a little because this turtle started pooping right when we walked up. Ha! 

This is a bearded dragon, the lizard that first inspired Selah's longing for a pet lizard when we saw some at Repticon several years ago. They really are awesome. She told everyone around us about her Chinese Water Dragon. 

This bear came right up to the fence to check us out. 

This was fun! 

They even had a snowcone truck giving away snowcones. Korban wanted to ride on it! 

He wanted a bite of hers. :)

Korban flopped on the bed and announced he was tired when we got to the hotel room. He didn't go to sleep though, and he found a renewed source of energy when I offered to take him and Selah to the pool. We enjoyed playing in the pool both nights we were there. The kids love water. Brad had to finish up two of his grad school classes by Friday evening, so he was working on them every spare minute and didn't get to enjoy the pool with us. :(

The conference was great. Very inspiring. I learned a lot of history on how the Anericans with Disabilities Act was passed, how far this county has come in the treat of those with different abilities, and how far we still have to go. 

The kids stayed in respite care provided by the conference, which was a huge benefit. We wouldn't have been able to both attend the conference if there hadn't have been someone there to watch the kids, and their respite workers are well trained. They had a big room all decorated for them, with plenty of activities. They called it Camp Carnival, since there was a carnival theme this year. Both kids loved it and are asking when they can go back. I always worry that Korban's separation anxiety will cause problems in situations like this. We had a few snags, but overall he did well, thankfully. 

So happy we got to attend the conference this year and we are already hoping to get to return next year! 


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