Little Miss, T-Rex and I spent the weekend in Columbus, Ohio at a waterpark resort with my parents and in-laws. We were all attending the Ohio Regional Fellowship of Christian Magicians convention. Sadly, Ked had school and was unable to join us. It was the first FCM convention I had been to in at least a decade, and the first for the kids. They had a blast running around the convention, gathering armloads of balloon animals and following their grandpas. I saw people I hadn’t seen since I’d had kids, and the consensus was that T-Rex is a mini-Ked and Little Miss is a mini-me.
My father-in-law was emcee during the Friday evening program. As he introduced my Dad, who is president of the Ohio group, he shared the trivia that he and my Dad share 2 grandchildren. Near the end of the program he finished the trivia by explaining how I had married his oldest son and that we had met at a convention like this one when we were about six years old. He went on to say that Little Miss was there and that she is six years old and will be on the lookout for a suitable husband. I was yelling from my seat “NO!! NO!!”
It was especially nostalgic to attend one of these conferences in light of the Love Letters story that I’ve been writing recently. I didn’t realize how much I had missed the conventions and the arts. After my mom and I had completely wore out the kids at the waterpark, we caught the last part of my Dad’s juggling lecture. He invited me up front saying the group had wanted to see what I’d learned while growing up in the FCM. I stared at him wide-eyed. I hadn’t juggled in about 8 years. I wasn’t sure I remembered how, let alone attempt it in front of 15 strangers. But, I picked up 3 beanbags anyway and it all came flooding back. I even tried a few tricks and succeeded. Apparently, not juggling for 8 years makes me a better juggler. Then we got really brave and Dad and I decided to demonstrate how to pass the beanbags between us while juggling. We used to do this all the time in our programs. We took a minute to juggle across from each other to make sure our rhythms still matched. Then we gave it a go. And no one even got hurt! I don’t think I had juggled with my Dad in about 15 years. Talk about bringing back a lifetime’s worth of memories.
There were many God moments throughout the weekend as guests of the resort attended the free magic shows where the performers clearly explained the story of Jesus. I watched the balloon artist as a half dozen boys dressed in swimsuits sat at his feet, in awe of the balloons he was twisting and handing out. What I’ve always loved about the creative arts is how people are inexplicably drawn to them. Who doesn’t love to suspend disbelief and ooh and ahh at a magic show? Pair that wonder with the greatest story ever told and miracles can happen.
Funniest story of the weekend – during the ventriloquist’s skit on Friday night T-Rex rather loudly proclaimed, “Those are puppets!! Those are puppets!! Puppets don’t talk!!!!!”
I’m looking forward to going back next year, and hopefully Ked will be able to make it too! If you’ve ever been curious about learning magic, juggling, ventriloquism or puppetry, consider joining us next year March 2-3 at Ft Rapids Indoor Waterpark in Columbus, Ohio!