Thursday, July 18, 2013

Back To School Shopping

I have seen many blog posts about all the supplies people are buying for their classrooms.  I am a wee bit jealous, but I promised myself I was not going to buy a whole lot for my classroom this year because I still have stockpiles of stuff from previous years.  There isn't a whole lot that I NEED for my classroom.  Want, yes.  Need, NO!  Don't you worry though, I have done lots of back to school shopping, just in a different way.
After I had my daughter Whitney in November of 2011, the weight just wasn't coming off, in fact I gained more and more weight after having her.  In June of 2012 we took some generational pictures with my family and when we got them back I cried.  I hadn't realized how I looked until I saw the pictures.  Here is one with me and my girls. 
I realized I needed to take the steps to get healthy for myself and my family.  I started watching what I eat, and tried to completely cut out soda, but realistically I just cut WAY back on soda.   I HATE sweating with a fire burning passion.  It is gross.  *shudder*  I slowly started losing weight, but not how I would have liked.  I stuck with my plan when I felt like it, but any ounce of stress and the dark chocolate came out and the Diet Mt. Dew was back in my hand.  Here is a picture of my in November of 2012, about ten pounds down.
Sometime in the spring, I think around the end of February, our school decided to put on a Biggest Loser competition.  Everyone paid 20 dollars and three people who lost the biggest percentage of their body fat took the pot.  Money motivates me.  Losing money motivates me even more!  I jumped on the chance.  I knew for a fact that if I thought I was going to lose money, I would not pick up the dark chocolate, and I was right! I ended up getting 2nd place in our competition and lost 14 more pounds.  I am happy to say that I am now down 30 pounds from June 2012.   I am holding steady at my current weight, so I decided to join a Zumba class.  I sweat there, I don't like that part, but it is SO MUCH FUN!  I would go every night if I could.  I even bought the Zumba DVD's so I can do Zumba at home when my girls nap.  Here is a picture from this week, 30 pounds lighter than a year ago!

My back to school shopping this year has been for clothes.  Nothing fits me anymore.  My pajamas are even too big!  This is a good problem to have.  I am cheap. I refuse to pay full price for anything.  I have been bargain shopping and having so much fun.  The first time I went to try on clothes I had to take them ALL back because they were all 2 sizes too big!  So far I have scored the black sweater in the picture above for $8.00 at Kohls and the clothes in the pictures below!
The tan shirt on the left was $6.00 at Kohls.
The purple shirt next to it was on clearance for $5.25 at Maurices.
The off white shirt next to it was also $5.25 at Maurices.
The black and white striped shirt was on clearance for $6.00 at Maurices.
I also got a pair of blue jean trousers for $9.00 at Maurices, but they accidentally left the security tag on them so I need to take them back.  They are in my car because if I don't leave them in my car, I will forget to take care of it!

Both of these dresses are from Kohls.  I am short, like REALLY short.  Think 5 foot 1 short!  I have always wanted a Maxi dress but they are always ridiculously long on me!  The blue dress on the left was in the petites section of Kohls and with some wedges will be the perfect length!  That one was on sale for 25 dollars but my mom gave me $20 in Kohls cash so I only paid 5 dollars for it.  The one on the right was a little more expensive, but I LOVE it.  I think it was right around $20.  They have that same dress in black and white.  I really want to get it.  I have three weddings coming up and I think the black and white one would look great at a wedding.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Blog Award!

I was honored to receive a comment on my blog nominating me for the Liebster Award. 
Mrs Ehles Kindergarten Connections
Mrs. Ehle from Mrs. Ehle's Kindergarten Connections nominated me. If you have never visited her blog, GO NOW!  It is one of my favorites!  She has awesome ideas.
Now for the award itself, here it goes!

To accept the nomination I must:
1. Link back to the blog that nominated me
2. Nominate 5-11 blogs with fewer than 200 followers
3. Answer the questions posted for you by your nominator
4. Share 11 random facts about yourself
5. Create 11 questions for your nominees
6. Contact your nominees and let them know you nominated them
Here are some "facts" about me... prompted by ?s from my "nominator!"

1. What is your favorite ice cream flavor?  We have an AWESOME ice cream shop by us called Dairy Haus.  All of their ice cream is home made.  They have wedding cake ice cream that is to DIE for!
2. What is your favorite type of music to listen to?  Country or Pop, depends on the day.  My newest music obsessions are Maroon 5 and Bruno Mars
3. What is your favorite subject to teach?  Math
5. Do you prefer sweet or salty?   Sweet!
6. Name 5 things that are currently in your purse.  
     a.  a diaper (I have a 1 1/2 year old daughter)
     b. childrens underwear (I also have a 4 year old daughter)
     c.  Receipts
     d. wet ones
     e. my giraffe print wallet
7. Where is your favorite vacation destination?  Vegas
8. How long have you been teaching?  This will be my seventh year teaching.
9. What is your favorite children's book?  Oooh  this is a hard one!  I would have to say Lulu and the Brontosaurus10. Do you prefer the mountains or the beach?  neither, I prefer pools, there are fish in the ocean...and sharks.  NO THANK YOU!
11. Name one special thing about the town you live in.  There really isn't anything special about the town I live in now, but where I grew up our high school mascot was the Pretzels.  When I was a senior George Bush choked on a pretzel and the national news came to our town and interviewed all the high school kids.   It was interesting.  :)

I'm not real sure that I can come up with 11 MORE interesting facts about me that you would actually care to know, but here are a few...
1. When I was a child my first grade teacher was also my tumbling coach.  I was POSITIVE I was going to be in the Olympics one day.  That NEVER happened. 
2. I am extremely gullible.  When I was a kid, my grandpa used to tell me we were eating road kill for breakfast, and I believed him. 
3.  In my first three years teaching, I taught art, second grade, first grade and kindergarten.  Yes, I switched from Art to second grade mid-year. 
4.  I can NOT dance.  I have no rhythm what so ever, but I started taking Zumba classes and I love it!
5.  My last name rhymes with Cow.  (A lot of people ask how to say my last name)
6.  I am the middle child.  I have an older sister who is my best friend and a little brother who is pretty cool too.  There is a reason they stopped having children after him though!
7.  I know a lot of people switched over to bloglovin, but I still get really ridiculously excited when I log into blogger and see that I have a new follower.  82 and counting...  I don't really understand how bloglovin works.  I just get my blog fix from the blog feed at the bottom of my blogger dashboard.
I am nominating:
Visit My Website:
Check out their amazing blogs!
Ladies, you can answer the same set of questions I got to answer!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Crazy for Animal Print

I used to say I have a jungle themed classroom, but in reality I have an animal print classroom.  I basically just want my students to feel comfortable and not overwhelmed by classroom decorations.  Last year I did all of my bulletin boards with a black background and I LOVED how "homey" it made my classroom feel.  I had the privilege of looping with my class last year and I was really surprised about how much calmer my students were.  I am super anxious to get back in my classroom because it always takes me FOREVER to get things how I want them, and I KNOW I have a lot of organizing to do.  I decided that  I wanted a new number line and new headers for my word wall this year.  Glitter Meets Glue Designs on TPT has some adorable glittery animal prints so I got busy!  Here is what I created!

Click here to see my number on TPT!
I also created alphabet cards for my word wall, that could double as flashcards!
The cards are 3 inches wide and 4 inches tall.  I can't wait to take pictures of these hanging up in my room!
Click here to get my alphabet cards.


Monday, July 8, 2013

Super Improvers Wall

I think one of the things about Whole Brain Teaching that I am most excited about is the Super Improvers Wall.  I am a firm believer that every child (AND adult) has something that they can improve on. I love that all interactions with the Super Improver Wall are positive. 
For those of you not familiar with WBT, a Super Improvers Wall is part of their year long classroom management system.  There are ten steps to the SIW, which you can name whatever you want.  There are some really cute sports themed steps in the book, or you could just use colors.  Your SIW wall should have all the steps laid out for the students, and each student also needs to have their own individual card on the wall to chart improvements.  All students start out on the first step, which I am calling beginner.  Then they have a goal for improvement and each time you see them improve they get a star.  When a student gets ten stars, they take home their card to show their parents and they get a new one that correlates with their new level.  From what I understand, you can change the goal for improvement as you see necessary, but should only focus on ONE thing at a time.  The best part is, it doesn't have to be a behavior that you are focusing on.  A student's goal could be to return homework on time, improve sight word fluency, or anything else academic that a child needs to work on.
I am so excited to put the SIW up in my classroom, of course mine has animal print!

A student would have to make 100 improvements throughout the school year to achieve living legend status.  I plan on having a permanent place in my classroom to display pictures of students who have made living legend status throughout the years.

You can snag my Super Improvers Wall posters in my TPT!
Click here to go to my store!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013


In honor of Independence Day my entire TPT store is on sale until Friday at midnight!  Stock up now!  I am going to try and finish up a few things I have been working on today, but if I don't get them finished before the sale is over, I will put them on sale for a couple days after they are posted!  Here are a few things that I have finished and are in my store ready for purchase!
These adorable locker tags match the rest of the owl themed items in my store! 
This math packet includes at LEAST one worksheet for each standard under Operations and Algebraic thinking for first grade.  Download the preview for the freebie pictured below!
Have a great holiday weekend for your family!  And remember we are the land of the free because of the brave! 

Monday, July 1, 2013

Happy Fourth of July!

I am so thankful to be an American! 
I love my country and couldn't imagine living anywhere else. 
 It frustrates me when people say negative things about our country after tragedies like the Boston Marathon bombings and Sandy Hook happen. 
I refuse to let the horrendous acts of a few people change my feelings about our country as a whole.  
It makes me so proud to be an American, when we all come together to help the victims of these events by donating whatever we can to help. 
America has a lot of amazing things to offer! 
In honor of Independence Day, I joined up with 180 Days and Counting for a July 4th giveaway. 
I also will be putting my entire TPT store 20% off from July 3 to July 5th! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Please enjoy the holiday with your family and take some time to think about the men and women who are currently overseas. 
 It breaks my heart knowing that their families miss them like crazy and they miss their family also. 
This school year I had a little boy who's dad is overseas and it broke my heart every time he talked about missing his father.