Mothers Of Preschoolers International Convention
September 21st, 22nd and 23rd
Nashville, TN

For my 3rd and final trip to nationals, I headed back to the Gaylord Opryland Hotel in Nashville, Tennessee.  We were there 2 years ago for the 2004 convention so this time I tried to take pictures of things I didn't take pictures of last time I was there.  When I go home my memory chip was full of 229 photos!  I distilled it down to a 121 picture slide show and hopefully these 15 photos are enough to tell the story of our adventure.  Once again Tessa stayed at Grandma and Poppa's house and Brian got to be a bachelor for a few days.  

This year I took lots of pictures of the beautiful flowers in and around the hotel.  The orchids were beautifu
l and there were many flower varieties I'd never seen before.

I took this photo from the Mezzanine level of the convention center over looking the main portion
 of the Delta section.  All was relatively quiet at 6:45 in the morning.

Even with a food court full of eating options, meal times were still daunting.  This is the Delta Island food court during one
 of the slower moments.  At the peak of the lunch rush, you wouldn't be able to see any open floor space.

Here is DiVine.  She would wander the Delta Island for about half an hour 4 times a day.  She was amazing.  When she'd pose up
 against a lamp post and hide her face, you couldn't even tell it was a person.  People would wander by and wonder why
all these people were staring at a bunch of vines.  With the stilts on her legs and long stilts on her arms, she would bend and
 pose and get into all sorts of odd positions.  She was fascinating to watch and this was probably in Shirley's top 3 favorite things at convention.

Every night the big fountain in the Delta section had a water show done to lights and music.  None of my photos do it justice.  When the large center spout would really get going it was probably shooting 40 feet into the air.  Sitting almost directly below it you could feel the light spray coming off the fountain.  By the 4th night of watching the show, I was singing along with the music.  This was one of my favorite things at convention this year.

One of my other favorite things was the fact that I got to spend some time with my friend Sharleen.  I've known Sharleen since
 the 4th grade and we've managed to keep in touch all these years.  We ended up on the same connecting flight from
 Denver to Nashville and just happened to be assigned seats 9D and 9F.  The nice gentleman in 9E was happy to
switch with Shar so we could visit during the flight.

This might be my favorite photo of all the ones I took that weekend.  I want to blow it up to wall size and use it
as wall paper in my house.  Can't you hear the water and smell the flowers?

To get from the hotel to the mall we would walk right by the Grand Old Opry.  I must admit I was a bit disappointed.
 I expected it to be, well, grander.  Some of the MOPS moms caught a show during their stay but we just admired
 the flowers planted outside.

We did manage to get and and see a little of Nashville though.  We never made it downtown but on Thursday morning we went
 out to President Andrew Jackson's home- The Hermitage.  We were not allowed to take photos inside the home but here is
 one of the front of the house (top) where we gathered for the tour and the back of the house (bottom).  On the grounds of
 the Hermitage you can also wander through the gardens, see the crypt where President Jackson and his wife Sarah are buried,
 slave quarters and other out buildings.

Marc Schultz was back for the second year in a row.  None of my photos of him on stage turned out but I love this one of all of
us MOPS moms waving our cell phones to the music like everyone used to do with their lighters back in the 70's and 80's.
  He said he'd had crowds do that in the past but had never seen quite so many cell phones all in one place!

I stood on my chair to get this shot of the table we sat at for the regional dinner.  In the past they've done a luncheon
 in the middle of the convention but this time they wrapped everything up with a huge dinner after the last general session.
  The food was excellent and it was a nice end to a long few days.

Here we are!  Sarah, myself, Tammy and Shirley.  I think the photo on Tammy's camera turned out better of all of us
 but I don't have that one yet.  I'm sad I won't be able to go next year but this was a great group of gals
 to travel and room with.  Thanks you guys!

Go here for more pictures from the Gaylord Opryland Hotel that I took in 2004.

Or here for pictures from last years convention in Dallas, Texas.

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