Wow. ATLOSCon is over. It feels really weird given that the conference has been on my mind for the past several months. It was a great conference and I had a wonderful time meeting new people, leading classes, and attending social events. Here’s a rather lengthy recap to gather my thoughts.
Oh my was I busy this time around. I volunteered free babysitting and photography for the silent auction, designed the t-shirt and flyers, held a packet stuffing party at my apartment, and prepped to teach 3 classes, one of which I picked up at the last minute. That week before the conference was frantic trying to finish all my work for the conference, wrap up all day job projects and clean the apartment for Dad’s arrival. I’m super lucky to have had Reid on hand to run to the grocery store and cook otherwise I probably would not have eaten at all. But I got it all done in time for the meet and greet Thursday night and I was able to enjoy the conference without worrying about work.
This year I taught 3, count em, 3 classes! Growing Up Objectivist with Dad, How to Improve Your Photography, and a last minute edition, Creating a Value Dense Home: Concepts from The Not So Big House Series. I was super duper nervous before my value dense home class. I had only read a few of Sarah Susanka’s books and had about a week and a half to prep. But it went great! There was lots of audience participation, I didn’t sound like a bumbling dork too much, and some people walked out with real solutions to their home organization issues. My class with Dad was awesome (as I expected). It would be really cool if other regional conferences would pick it up. Then Dad and I could travel and got to more Objectivist conferences! My photography class was so-so. It was the last class and I was just wiped out. I feel like I wasn’t as dynamic and engaging as I could have been. But the people who took it said it was good, so I’m glad they got something out of it.
As for the other classes, I enjoyed them, but I realized I was taking a lot of classes that a) I already knew the subject matter or b) I had taken a similar class last year. It wasn’t until afterwards that I wished I had taken Paul’s activism class and Aaron’s free market solutions discussion. But Yippee Mistakes! Now I know better for next year to explore more unknown areas.
The social events were by far my favorite part of the conference, especially the parties and dancing. I think last year I was focused on meeting all the Atlanta folks since I would be moving here, but this year I met more out-of-towners. I had several long conversations with people I had only known online, mostly other twenty-something women. It made me wish there were more young, single Objectivist girls in my social circle. I love all my friends here, but most of them are married with kids. It was refreshing to connect with people my own age who are in similar life situations. I also got to introduce my dad to all my new friends and contacts in Atlanta and I got to make some new friends. I really enjoyed everyone meeting (and loving!) him and showing him what I’ve accomplished in the past 9 months or so.
I had a great time at Luc’s art tour/guided visit to the High Museum. I’ve read his book and understand his method, but often I fast forward through it. I’ll look at a piece, figure out what’s happenings and the emotions felt by the characters, then move on. Going through the process with Luc and other ATLOSCon attendees forced me to slow down and really savor a work of art. In turn I had a much deeper connection with the pieces than I would have gotten on my own. It was a nice reminder to sloooowwwww dooowwwwwnnn.
The Fattest Baby I Have Ever Seen
Another event of note, I met Faye and Tim for the first time ever (I didn’t even know them on the internets before!) and I about died when I saw their son Henry. He is the fattest, chubbiest little baby I have ever seen in my entire life. I was so excited to hold him and marvel at his delicious little rolls. Made me super excited for my nannying gig coming up.
After ATLOSCon was over I felt sad and a bit lost for what to do with myself. For a long time ATLOSCon has occupied my thoughts and actions. For a few days I felt like I had zero purpose or productive aim. I finally sat down and wrote out a list (as I am wont to do) of my next projects. Turns out I have a whole bunch.
- Dragon*Con costumes
- Research and plan for ASL and photography curriculums for homeschool co-op
- Start knitting Christmas gifts
- ATLOS website
- Spruce up the apartment
- Improve graphic design skills and knowledge
- Reread Harry Potter series (gotta be on my A-game for D*Con)
- Atlas Shrugged trivia night
Oh yeah. I did do other things before ATLOSCon and I can again. I felt much better having a concrete list of goals to work towards and I’m happily back to normal life.
How was your ATLOSCon experience?
P.S. Check out photos from the con here.