Monday, December 30, 2013

My One Little Word for 2014

Holy cow, Batman... tomorrow is 2014.  I must confess that New Years is one of my favorite holidays.  There is something refreshing about the idea of a fresh start... even if it is just a day after the previous year :)
I'm linking up with Denise over at Sunny Days in Second Grade for My One Little Word for 2014.  What did I choose?
I choose balance.  It surely is a struggle... this business of being a mom, teacher, and wife.  I must confess that I am not always good at any of them.  So.... my word for 2014 is balance... and to hoping that I can find a way to be better at it.  Have you picked a word for 2014?

Happy New Year my bloggy peeps... I hope that is will be one of the best years yet... talk to y'all soon!

Saturday, December 28, 2013

The 100th Day is Coming... Yeehaw

Christmas has come... and Christmas has gone.  I think I have successfully taken down all of our Christmas decorations... except my wooden wise men... they're still chillin' on the mantel.  (note to self: take down the wise men).  The New Year is upon us... only a few more days until 2014.  Guess who will still be writing 2013 for awhile.  Yep, this chick.  My brain sucks at change... just sayin'

We have to go back to work on Thursday.  This has been officially the shortest Christmas break in the history or EVER!  That being said... I have enjoyed every.  single.  minute.  I have slept in most days.  Had coffee every.  single.  morning.  I have watched way too much HGTV, read cookbooks, and enjoyed my children.  I just keep thinking... we get a day off in January for MLK and also have a week in February for winter break {don't throw anything at me if you don't get that break, too}. The kidlets come back on January 6th and that is our 92nd day of school.... that's right... it's all downhill from here folks!  I finished my 100th day pack just in time.  You can click any of the pictures to check it out!  This pack also includes instructions for using an Aging Booth app (for apple or android).
I decided to use my own personal kidlets to experiment on.  They giggled and cackled for a long time after they saw themselves as old people.  I just can't wait to take pictures of my firsties when they come back.  I don't know if I'll print them out in color... or I might just test them out on the copier.  I made papers for them to write on, questionnaires to fill out... and lots of other ideas!  My plan is to hang up their pictures, matted onto black construction paper and pair it with a piece of their writing.  It is going to be uber-cute!!!
  Well, I'm going to call it a bloggy night for now... company coming over for a UFC fight.  I'm pretty pumped about the chili bar, the chips & salsa, plus some sushi!  Hope y'all have had an amazing Saturday!  I'll talk to y'all soon!  

PS... the app is available for apple or android.. .in case you wanted to check it out and try it, too!  

Thursday, December 26, 2013

I Should've Worn My Elastic Waistband Pants

There... I said it... I should've worn my elastic waistband pants to dinner yesterday.  I maybe ate too much.... twice.  I love carbs...and they love me!  I hope that y'all had a very Merry Christmas.  I enjoyed the day with my peeps and watching them squeal with delight as they opened their gifts.  I have been collecting their presents since September... so I was pumped to watch them all be opened in like 2 minutes! They are efficient... what can I say? :)
My kiddos are off playing with their new tech devices and I am starting to think about taking Christmas stuff down.  I know it seems soon, but we go back to school on the 6th and I don't want the decorations looming over my head...  I also thought that the 2 days of planning were going to be so awesome.  I was picturing myself chillin' in my classroom... organizing, writing lesson plans, cleaning, getting materials together, etc.  Well, we got an itinerary in an email and it looks like I'm going to have approximately 1 hour to myself.  Sigh.

Ok... enough about me... how was your Christmas?  Do you leave all your decorations up for awhile... or do you go ahead and start dismantling early?  When do you go back to school?    What was your favorite Christmas present that you received OR gave?

If you're in a shopping mood... my peeps and I from over at the Primary Chalkboard are all doing a sale.  You can visit any of our TpT shops and receive 20% off... starting today and running through the 29th.  I am shopping for 100th day things, reading comprehension packs, persuasive writing help, and some seasonal type things... OH... and clip art {always the clip art!}
Well, I'm gonna head out to grab some Starbucks (yesterday was hard w/o my "fix") and see what deals I can find at Hobby Lobby, TJ Maxx and some boutiques here in town!  I will talk to y'all soon!

Monday, December 23, 2013

Charlotte's Web... Finished

I am so pumped to finally be finished with my Charlotte's Web pack.  I added a few extra things at the end and I'm so glad that I did.  I really do love this book.  My boys saw me reading it and my youngest kept asking me if I was at the part where Charlotte dies yet.  He has seen the movie and knows the ending obviously... but I still got choked up reading it.  It is just a great book.

I added an interactive notebook page and a spider craft... didn't plan on doing those when I started this a few weeks back... but I like the way they turned out!

If you read Charlotte's Web with your kidlets... you won't want to miss out on this pack!  I included comprehension questions (and an answer key for each chapter), graphic organizers for each main character, favorite character graphing activity, informational passages on spiders and pigs, and so much more!!!
I hope that your Christmas break is off to a FAB start!  I can't believe that tomorrow is already Christmas Eve.... I still have more shopping to do, y'all!  I am dreading it.  My mother in law is having the kidlets over to make cookies... and I am going to brave the mall by myself for those last few things.  I know it's not Thanksgiving anymore... but I am seriously so thankful for each of you who come hang out with me here and over at Facebook!  I hope you all have a very Merry Christmas... and I'll talk to y'all soon!  <3

Friday, December 20, 2013

Five For Friday {Christmas Break...Woot}

Chiming in here for the Five for Friday post...  just chillin' on my couch!  That's right... I'm on Christmas break, y'all!  If you're reading this... chances are... you are also on your couch...  enjoying the first few hours of Christmas break!!!  Yesterday was day 90 for us... that's 1/2 way done!!!  It's all downhill from here...
This week was a crazy week.  This is my 12th year but every year it takes me by surprise.  I was driving to work earlier this week and I looked up at the moon and actually thought, "Man... that's a beautiful moon!  OHHHHH NOOOOO... that's a full moon."  .... and the kids didn't disappoint.  Game on little humans...  they have kept me on my toes all week.
 Yesterday was a hard day.  It marked the one year anniversary of the day I found out that Frances didn't have a heartbeat.  I didn't tell anyone that it was the anniversary until later in the day... just needed to get through work.  A co-worker brought this down to me this morning.  Said she had ordered it a long time ago, but for a myriad of reasons... didn't get around to giving it to me until yesterday.  Y'all... that was a God thing!  No other possible theory fits!
My M1 and M2 at karate.  They really love it.  The hubs signed them up and he loves to go watch them practice.  I love having a few quiet minutes after school.  Then I run home, straighten the house, and try to make a plan for dinner....  ahem, a loose plan for dinner!  Let's keep it real...  y'all want Little Caesars for dinner?  Why don't we go get chips and salsa wasted?  Kids... y'all just want a bagel?  
I'm stalking my summer vacation at the beach.  Straight up STALKING!  Love a good countdown app!  We may have booked our 2014 week back in August.  We are READY!  
 Remember above... when I mentioned loose plans for dinner?  Yeah... I actually love reading cookbooks.  Ironic... since I don't actually cook often... {or even that well}.  This lovely book was a gift from our school nurse who also love the Pioneer Woman cookbooks.  Made my week!!!  <3 her!!!
A sweet co-worker came down this week after school.  I had brewed coffee {if you brew it... they WILL come}.  While she was visiting... she asked if I had any thoughts on homemade ornaments.  I asked her if she had ever made the borax ornaments (for lack of a better name).  I quickly described it... told her it definitely works & gave it my seal of approval.  Side note: I used to make these every year when I taught 4th graders.  She took some pictures of her 2nd graders in action & sent them to me. {she's sweet like that}.. 
 So you need some Mason jars... or she used glass beakers.  You also need some pencils, fishing line, pipe cleaners, Borax, and access to boiling water {she used my coffee pot to do this}.

 The best part... you can totally do this one day... let them form overnight... and VOILA!  Great for people on a time crunch!  I've never made these with my personal little humans... but thinking we might give this a go over Christmas break.  I think they would LOVE it!
 Here's an image of one with fully formed crystals.  So pretty... and really fascinating I think.  The recipe and instructions can be found HERE... but there are several others... mostly all saying the same thing though!
I hope that you are reading this... relaxing at home... enjoying the first few hours of your break.  Hoping to blog more this week since I can actually have a few coherent thoughts!  Talk to y'all soon!  

Sunday, December 15, 2013


5 more days... that's right... 40 more hours.  Christmas break is on the horizon my friends!  {tying a knot and holding on}.  This week I am including a picture with my lesson plans. I think that my principal will get my humor.  I may even skip writing them this week and just send the picture :)  Our break this year isn't quite as long as in years past.. but I plan on relishing in EACH day.

This last week is SLAM packed FULL!  We are doing Christmas around the world all morning Tuesday, lots of assemblies, Christmas party on Thursday, and Polar Express day on Friday....  the kids are cah-razy and I think the teachers are even worse {me included}.  This is my favorite time of year though... and their excitement is quite contagious.  I love hearing tidbits of their convos about Santa, Elf on the Shelf, reindeer and I've actually heard several talks about Jesus.  Be still my heart!!!
So...  we've been immersed in all things polar and Christmas related.  The kids were fascinated by reindeer facts.  We researched online and got to watch a few video clips.  They were so excited to tell me yell out all the things they had learned!  We also listened to Olive, the Other Reindeer on Tumblebooks... and the kids sat mesmerized!  That book is so fun!

Out in the hallway we have our shape snowmen (you can get them for FREE in my TpT store HERE!).  I also made poster sized elves with my SMARTboard...  by tracing them from  Melonheadz!  {puffy heart her}.  In fact... she now has a Melonheadz Addict Club.  She announced it this morning... and I got up and it was right near the top of my list of things to accomplish today!  I even have an official badge now!  If you want to get in on that action... you can find out how to become an addict by clicking HERE to find out more!  Out on the sides of the picture are our Elf Applications.  I didn't make these and I'm not sure of the original author, but they are a FREEBIE I found on Google Docs.  We do them every year and they are super cute.  Grab them HERE!

My niece got married yesterday and we traveled 10 hours (5 there and 5 back)... so I haven't been able to get much TpT stuff done this weekend.  I do have a few projects that I have started... hoping to finish them up soon.  I will keep you posted when they are done.  If you don't follow my TpT shop yet... you can do that HERE so that you won't miss any freebies or new products!  I also share a bunch of freebies from around the web that I find on my FB page if you wanna check that out!

I hope that y'all had a great weekend... and that this last week before break will go by SUPER fast for all of us!  One last picture...  this one is of my small humans at the wedding yesterday.  The youngest {M2} was the ring bearer and was so stinkin' excited about wearing slacks and a jacket....  I know I'm partial obviously, but they were so handsome!  Talk to y'all soon!

Thursday, December 5, 2013


My kids have some serious wiggles.  I mean... like... dude, are you having a seizure?  Do you need to go to the bathroom?  Are you trying out to be Beyonce's backup dancer?  Yep... some serous wiggle action going on in my first grade classroom {teacher included!}  We get up and do brain breaks... we use the few extra minutes here and there to do Just Dance Kids on the Smart Board...  but they are just a wiggly bunch.  We play Scoot a lot in my classroom... and this week we are working on compound words to go along with our Saxon Phonics lesson...  perfection!  I had my Popsicle Contraction center printed out and laminated.  I armed each kidlet with a clipboard, pencil, and a recording sheet... and we were OFF!
I started out with just 2 colors of popsicles (12 of the blue and 12 of the green) and laid them 1 on each desk.  The kiddos started and I gave them 30 seconds or so at each desk before I would yell, "Scoot!" and they would slide to the next desk.  Once they finished blue and green ... we met on the carpet to quickly review the compound words they made... and made any corrections.  Then I laid out the yellow and orange cards and we scooted (is that a word?) again.  There were 48 total cards... so it took less than 30 minutes.

It was easy for me to rotate and check who had it... and who needed me to scoot with them a few times.  The wiggles were also at bay for awhile...  until the afternoon at least!  Do you play Scoot in your classroom?  What types of things do you do to help keep the wiggles at bay?  Hope y'all are having a great Thursday... only one more day til the weekend!!!  

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

An American History Bundle @ Educents {Yes, Please!!}

I am uber-excited to be included in this bundle with Educents!!!  It is loaded up with American History goodies for 1st through 4th grade!  The bundle is listed at 66% off the regular retail value and comes with over 400 pages {9 instant downloads....woot!}!   Hurry it won't last!

I know you will love my 8 Famous African Americans pack that is included.  It is my best seller over at TpT and you really get a deal with this bundle!  The pack concentrates on 8 famous African Americans including: Booker T. Washington, Fredrick Douglass, George Washington Carver, Jackie Robinson, Jesse Owens, Sojourner Truth, Ruby Bridges, and Thurgood Marshall.  It is the perfect addition to your Black History Month plans & materials.  For each historical figure you will find 1 graphic organizer, 1 page in the coloring book, a reading passage with comprehension questions as well as a mini-foldable book!

There are many other products in our bundle to get your kids learning about America!  
Comprehension passages & questions, timelines, vocabulary, maps, research projects, readers and so much more!  

We have all linked together to show you exactly what's included in this bundle.  So hop along to the next person to see the next product!!!

The deal won't last long so head over now!