Friday, March 11, 2016


The OMOD team went on the road the 1st of March. Shaniqua, Jordana, and Kamand sallied forth with me at the wheel to speak at the annual TRAPS (Texas Recreation and Parks Society) conference in Galveston. The drive down was uneventful as we were trying out a new route that bypassed the Houston traffic. I was very happy about that! Well, it was almost uneventful, except I neglected to read the second page of the directions until we found ourselves in Freeport, in the parking lot of a huge refinery. Thankfully, we live in the 21st century and the little woman that lives in my GPS knew exactly where we were and carefully guided us over the 2-mile long levee that connected us back to the road through the Brazoria National Wildlife Refuge.

Driving over the levee
Dinner at Landry’s when we finally arrived at the hotel was very much enjoyed.

The view from our hotel
After a late night swim in the pool and relaxing in the hot tub, everyone was ready for the next day’s presentation. We were well-prepared and delighted to speak to a standing room only crowd. The audience was mainly recreation therapists and other parks and recreation staff, and the panel of OMOD presenters shared some good advice about working with individuals with diverse disabilities. It was Texas Independence Day, so it was wonderfully appropriate that everyone learned that “one size does not fit all” when it comes to recreating with young women who live independently and have definite opinions on what they want to experience and learn. And Kamand’s personal assistant Kasera had an opportunity to talk about the reciprocal partnership she and Kamand have forged over the few years they have been working together. More good information for people who do this for a living.

Shaniqua, Jordana, Kamand, and Kasera
wait for their presentation to begin.
Immediately after our presentation we raced across the street to the Gulf of Mexico to dip our toes in the water. We didn’t care about the wind and the sand between our toes!

The ladies stand barefoot in the wet sand
with the Gulf of Mexico behind them.
Sadly, after leaving a sandy puddle in the hotel bathroom, we piled back into the mini van to begin the long drive back to Austin. With numerous bathroom stops and great gales of laughter, we relaxed into the satisfaction of a job well done, smiling all the way home.

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