Sunday, February 9, 2014

Don't Forget!

You only have a few hours left to enter the awesome giveaway going on at Angela's adorable blog, Hippo Hooray for Second Grade!

She has so many great prizes and there are TWO giveaways to enter. Head on over to check it out!

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Every Now and Then...

I have a very long commute. Sometimes it is terrible. But most times it just gives me time to decompress and listen to the radio. I think about the day that just happened and things that are coming up. Every once in a while, I really get to thinking. Like down to the nitty-gritty of my day...especially when it was a really hard day or a really great day.

Friday was one of those days. It was hard. My kids were hard. I was tired from a long week of working and battling a cold at the same time. By the time 3:15 rolled around, I was ready to see my darling students out the door and get on to the weekend.

But as I thought, those nitty-gritty kind of thoughts, I remembered an unexpected hug. A smile. A giggle. A student complimenting another one, without being prompted, but just because he was being nice. One student's walk around the room to say goodbye, get hugs and have secret handshakes on his last day at our school.

I thought about the moment when I realized that they are becoming more mature every day, even when that particular day wasn't too great. I thought about the math work I read over and the realization that they are having some major breakthroughs in their math thinking. The student who read so fluently, after struggling for so long.

Pretty soon, I was awash with gratitude. Then, THAT was all I could think about.





Even when it's tough, those little moments make it all worth it.

I hope that everyone has a great Sunday and a beautiful week.

If you feel so inclined, I would love to hear something that you felt great about this week. :-)

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Happy {Currently} New Year!

It's the New Year and time for a new Currently from the talented Farley over at Oh Boy! 4th Grade!

I totally would have had this up yesterday, but weather and terrible driving conditions kept us in the car from 11:00 am to 7:30 pm! Usually, getting home from my inlaws is about a 4 hour drive, so it wasn't a very fun time. It was a loooooong day...and I just wanted some dinner, a bath and my fluffy pillow when I finally walked through my door.

So, Currently is a day late! But here it is: 

Listening: The mountains of laundry have been piling was getting a little dangerous in my bedroom!

Loving: I know some of you have already gone back and I'm so sorry! I am grateful to have today, tomorrow and the weekend before it's back to the grind.

Thinking: We have a lot of projects going on in my house...we redid our loft, and my poor poor craft room is in sorry shape! I hope the next few days will be productive. 

Wanting: Now that I have the purple converse, I've been thinking about these beauties!
I may have a problem...someone might need to intervene.
Converse All Star Lo Sneaker
Needing: I think I need to find some new bins for the classroom...these are probably heading to my classroom this weekend.
Sterilite Small 3 Drawer Unit
I'm not sure what to do about organizing at the house yet. I'm open to ideas!!

Memory from Christmas: 

Yay for the New Year and yay for Currently! Make sure you head over and link up with yours!

If you are still with me, I wanted to let everyone know that my TPT store is 20% off today and tomorrow! Head over to check it out. Happy New Year!
Thanks to Hadar at Miss Kindergarten for the graphic!

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

13 for '13 - Happy New Year!

I can't believe that 2013 is almost over. It's been quite a year! I am excited to link up with Kristin from A Teeny Tiny Teacher, Hadar from Miss Kindergarten and Traci from Dragonflies in First for their annual year in review. :-)


This year, my favorite new piece of clothing is something I thought I would NEVER EVER EVER NOT EVEN ONCE try on, let alone purchase.

This person is skinny...but I am not and I LOVE skinny jeans.
Did you know you don't have to be SKINNY to wear SKINNY jeans?? I think I am behind the times because my friends kept saying that I would love them but I thought they were crazy. But...I LOVE them. They are so comfortable. And pretty cute.

I know this is one that a bunch of people have said, but I have to agree:


I thought this one was the far better of the two movies...


I loved this show so much and I was so glad to have Netflix to watch it! I learned some things.

1. I would NOT do well in prison. Not. At. All.
2. See number 1.

This is not the restaurant that we go to the most, but they just reopened after moving locations and being closed for about a year! They have the BEST homemade spaghetti and meatballs. And garlic knots. And spicy marinara. And garlic bread. Shall I go on? 

Scuba diving!!! Best experience of the year, for sure. :-) I know it's cliche, but I think diving may have changed my life.

'Nuff said.

Recipe for Chicken With Creamy Mushrooms
I LOVE this recipe. I would eat it every night if I could. We like to cut the chicken up into chunks and then mix it up with some mini bowtie noodles - because how cute are mini bowtie noodles?

My post with the most views is this one:

This was the first product I posted in my TPT store...I love doing this activity with my kiddos. Hopefully, I can make it work for the third graders this year!

My favorite post is this one:

Can I say the same thing twice? Because learning how to dive was a pretty big accomplishment. So that's my number one.

My number two accomplishment is going to my very first professional conference out of state! My good teaching friend and I went to New Orleans for an NCTM Interactive was such a blast! I learned a lot and I can't wait to go to another one.

Wow. This is a tough one for me! I have a terrible memory. My husband cannot believe all the things I can't remember.

But I think this is my favorite. I don't have a picture of it, so I hope I can describe it well enough.

Getting ready for our first dive in Cozumel was exciting, but I was super nervous. My stomach was in knots and I thought I might have a little panic attack coming on. The boat ride was smooth, but I felt like I was going to throw up. Even though the dive master explained everything, I was sure I wouldn't be able to remember it all when we got in the water. I also was sure that I wouldn't get my gear together right. Even so, we were getting closer to the dive spot, and I knew I was going in the water. When we got to the spot, I took a giant stride off the back of the boat and stated hyperventilating - but just a little and I got myself back together pretty quick.  We had a beautiful dive. We worked through all the hiccups and saw tons of underwater life. Pretty soon, we were low on air and ready to ascend to the surface.

As I pulled myself onto the boat, emotion took over and all the fear, excitement, panic and awe took over. Once I got seated, the tears started to fall. This is my favorite moment. The enormity of what we had just done completely overwhelmed me and I couldn't be in control of the moment. That doesn't happen to me very often. It was a moment I will never forget - and I will remember it each time we dive!

My goal for 2014 sounds simple when you say it, but I know it will be difficult.

I want to focus on what's important, and let all the little, insignificant, won't-matter-in-20-minutes-let-alone-20-years yuckiness GO. This goes for the classroom and my personal life. Life is far too short to worry about those little things! (I'm looking at you peer evaluators and end of year evaluations!)


WHEW! There you have it. Happy New Year everyone!

Monday, December 30, 2013

Teachers of Instagram Linky!

I'm going to just come right out and say it.


It is my favorite social media place. So many pictures and SO easy to upload AND see what everyone is up to. I think my poor blog has suffered a little because of IG. I will try to be better - but IG is a pretty harsh mistress, people.

I knew I needed to link up when I saw (on Instagram of course) a Teachers of Instagram linky party hosted by Elizabeth at Kickin' It In Kindergarten! Because I love Instagram...did you forget???

Slide1 are my top 3 favorite Instagram pics!

Number 3 clip art

Doesn't it look like I was working so hard??? I totally was. Doing math. In the summer. Loved every minute of it. ;-)

Number 2 clip art


Sometimes, the littlest things make you super happy. Like this picture of my new them.

Number 1 clip art

I love this guy so very much. Any picture with him makes me happy! Plus, he doesn't let me put him on IG very much, so this was a win!

If you aren't on Instagram, you better get over there and sign up! If you are, you can follow me if you want! My name is @craftofteaching.

Go link up and share your name and your pics so I can find some more great pics to see!

Thursday, December 26, 2013

New Year's Resolution Giveaway!

Hey everyone! I hope you are enjoying this lovely day-after-Christmas!

Hubby got to work from home today so I'm sitting here blog stalking and internet surfing while he works away...I'm also wearing my new monkey hat. How can you possibly go wrong with a monkey hat?

The Mr. looks pretty good in it too...

He's a good sport. A very good sport.
I'm not too good at sharing though, so the hat is back on my head.

I really just wanted to do a quick post about a fun giveaway that's going on over at Tailor-made Teaching! You might have seen my post on Facebook as well.

Britney has over 40 bloggers participating in this giveaway! Besides being able to win fabulous prizes (like Starbucks giftcards and amazing TPT products) you can read over all the participants' New Year's resolutions. She has it broken into grade level categories, and my part is in the 3rd grade section.

Head on over and check it out! Have a great day-after-Christmas!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas Questionnaire!

I can't believe that Christmas is over! It kind of snuck up on me this year (read: I finished my shopping yesterday morning) and now it's gone in a flash. We had a great holiday!

Now we are sitting here in our cozy loft, having some adult beverages and watching reruns of some of our favorite shows. I thought it would be the perfect time to link up to this fun Christmas Questionnaire from Fabulous in First!

Hot Chocolate or Eggnog?
I'm definitely more of a hot chocolate kind of girl! Really, I prefer a mocha from Starbucks, but hot chocolate can be pretty great too. Eggnog is not my favorite holiday drink!

Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them underneath the tree?
When I was little, Santa always left the presents under the tree unwrapped. He still does that for my niece at my parents' house!

Colored lights or white?
Both!! I love them all! This year our outside lights are all different colors and the ones on the tree are white and purple. They make me SO happy!

When do you decorate?
Can I tell you a secret? No judging now... We don't usually decorate much, if at all. Most years, we are out of town for Christmas or spending it at other people's houses. But this year, we did decorate! The weekend after Thanksgiving, to be exact. We even set up the tree - from up above! My husband doesn't usually get into the spirit, but he knows how much it means to me, so he made extra special effort this year to have some Christmas cheer going on. I have been a happy girl! :-)

Real or fake tree?
We just bought our new fake tree this year. I love it! It's a little one, but it fits our house perfectly. And it was prelit with white lights!

What tops your tree?
Hmmmm. When we have set up a tree in the past, we put a silver star on the top. With our awesome new tree though, the star was too heavy. It was a little hilarious...every time we would try to put it on, it would bend the top of the tree down. So funny! We just decided to look for one while we were shopping around, but no dice this year. Keeping my eyes open!

Favorite Christmas Memories or Traditions?
My favorite Christmas tradition is actually when we decorate the tree at my parents' house. We always have my mom's cheese soup (delicious!) and then we listen to Christmas music while we put the ornaments on. The best part is seeing all the ornaments from over the years...we can talk about ones that have special meaning and which ones we remember making and receiving. I love it!

Disclaimer: I wanted to post a pic here, but I was threatened not to by my family members. So, you'll just have to imagine it.

Do you remember your favorite gift as a child?
I think my favorite gift was when I got a bike! It was cold and snowy outside, so my parents let me try it out in our basement. It was awesome!

Do you prefer giving or receiving? 
I absolutely prefer giving. I always wish I had unlimited money so I could get everyone that one thing they would love but will never buy for themselves. I inherited this from my mom...she's such a giving person! Every year, my parents' church donates Christmas baskets with food and gifts to several families at my school. It's a great program and so many kiddos of my favorite days of the year.

 What is your favorite Christmas song?
I love Christmas songs!! It's really hard to pick a favorite, and from the minute Christmas songs start playing on the radio, I may or may not sit in the garage until whatever song is on finishes (and I finish singing along). But I would have to say my FAVORITE is "O Holy Night." Martina McBride has a beautiful version that makes me so happy!

Candy Canes. Yuck or yum?
YUM!!!! Have you seen these???

Ok, ok. These aren't my favorite, but WOWZA, I bet they pack a punch!

Favorite Christmas Movie?
Does "The Sound of Music" count as a Christmas movie? I'm saying yes. So that's my favorite. As you can imagine, there is lots of singing along. LOTS.

Do you shop online or in stores?
Both. But I always kick myself for not doing more online. Especially during that aforementioned Christmas Eve shopping trip...

Photo Cards, Letter or Store Bought Card?
I guess I'm indifferent...I just like hearing from people around the holidays!

Sliding in just under the wire....Christmas Day is almost over!! Head over and link up...QUICK!