What Does the Fox Say? BOOK!

Sunday, March 23, 2014 1 comment
This is a rather exciting edition of What We're Reading Sunday! I have finished last week's book AND started a new one. That is monumental. T and I have also rocked a few new ones this week! 

Just when I thought I could not handle hearing "What Does the Fox Say" one more time, we discovered the book version at our local used bookstore. (Buy local when possible!) T gives the illustrations two big thumbs up and so do I. It was also really, really fun to sing along!
Another must read this week (I had ordered it from Scholastic earlier) was Frozen: A Tale of Two Sisters. The DVD arrived Wednesday and we followed it up with the book on Thursday! We are big fans! T loves reading this one all by himself.

Last but not least, we read Al Yankovic's (yes, Weird Al) book When I Grow Up. I picked this one up for my classroom and T got the sneak peak! It is not in my top 10, but it is fun and will absolutely work with our unit at school. Here's the book trailer for it! 

As for me, I finished Eleanor and Park. I did not want it to end. I'm still thinking about it days later. It's a love story set in the 80's, about two teenagers. It is heartbreaking and heartwarming at the same time. If you like YA, I highly recommend it. Click here to read reviews and an excerpt. 

I've also just started this one. Not my usual read, but I'm excited! It has mixed reviews, so I'll be sure to let you know! 

What are you reading this week? 

New Teacher Days

Thursday, March 20, 2014 No comments
My throwback Thursday time machine is taking me back 11 years, back to the days of being a "new teacher." I've learned a lot since then.....
Field trips were cooler back in the day. I found this in a scrapbook a parent gave me in 2004. We were at Dauphin Island...with like a million kindergarteners. It was fantastic! 
No matter the decade, kids are cute and these class pictures are ridiculous. I have 11 of these now and I'm always towering behind a bunch of little kids. Why...oh why do we do this? I much prefer snaps of the class doing fun stuff or silly faces! :)
Field days never change. The teacher will always be forced to do something silly and the kids will laugh. This teacher doesn't mind it one bit. 

I've also learned that 11 years can leave a little wear and tear on a teacher....maybe I've recently learned that most of all! I mean, how old was I when I started teaching? I look 18! Oh, happy days!

What is something fun you have learned since you started teaching? 

Muppets Most Wanted

Monday, March 17, 2014 2 comments
Are you planning on seeing the Muppets sequel when it opens March 21st? If so, today is your lucky day! T and I had the opportunity to see a sneak peak of the movie and we are ready to share our big review! 
T's take on Muppets Most Wanted
"I liked how they thought the real Kermit was the real criminal mastermind, but it was really the evil Constantine. I liked seeing Ross Lynch, you know mom-Austin Moon, with the flowers." 

Mommy's take on Muppets Most Wanted
Though it was a little long, I loved the music, star cameos including Usher (swoon,) and of course....Tina Fey! I'm thinking it is for the 4 and up crowd.

With our review, we'd also like to share a couple of freebies! Click the pics below to download your own copies of how to draw Kermit and Miss Piggy! Thank you Disney for sharing these!

I will absolutely be sharing these with the first grade artists in my class! Have a great week and head to the movies this Friday to see Muppets Most Wanted!

*We attended the screening at no cost, but all opinions are our own...as always!

What We're Reading Sunday

Sunday, March 16, 2014 No comments
Granpa has done it again! He unknowingly sponsored this weekend's What We're Reading Sunday post! 

We are always looking for new bedtime stories and we stumbled across these at Target. They were Disney, so T was automatically interested! We did not buy them that day because we already had too many T purchases. Grandpa to the rescue! He ordered them and there were here in just a day or two! 

The stories are great. They are short, have a few pictures, and are familiar enough that if you doze in and out you can still know what is going on! :) 

As for Mommy, I have started this treasure. I'm only about a third of the way into the book and I'm loving it. It's a teen love story but it is way more than that. More next week! 
What are you reading this week?

Snow Storm Saving Grace!

Saturday, March 15, 2014 No comments
You might have heard (HA!) Atlanta was hit by a couple of big winter storms a few weeks ago. (Please insert all of your "make fun of Atlanta" jokes here.) 

I was one of those stranded drivers. I can't really complain because I was only in the car 2.5 hours (ooh, a decimal) but I did run into a little trouble. 

I did not have the car charger for my phone. With one bar left and a two mile walk in my future, I panicked. I texted everyone to let them know that if they did not hear from me, it was due to no phone rather than sliding off the road. Scary.

As I started going through every nook and cranny in my car to look for clothing items, I opened the glove compartment. (Can't believe we still call them that! Maybe my next post should be "renaming the glove compartment.") Waiting there for me was my Powerocks Magicstick. Angels started singing. The sun burst through the clouds and I knew everything was going to be ok! 
Magicstick is a portable charger for your favorite device. I put it there so I would always have a charger in case I needed one at a conference. Well forget conferences, momma needed it for an emergency! 
I plugged my phone into the charger and had a good 45 minutes of additional power which is saying A LOT since it had been in the car for a few days. 

When I retrieved my car two days later, I put the cord and Magicstick back into the super cute bag and put it right back where I found it. It will now live in the soon to be renamed glove compartment. I think everyone should have one. They will be gifts around the holidays. They will be door prizes at parties I throw. They are great. They are small (comparing them to my Vera Bradley's up there!) They are light~about the same weight as a small flashlight. They are reasonably priced

If you are like me and go through the life of the battery on your iPad or iPhone, seriously, you should check this out! 

*I received this product for review. All opinions are my own....as always. 

It's a Celebration! A Disney Side Celebration!

Friday, March 14, 2014 3 comments
My dear friend and colleague, S, just finished her Master's Degree in Elementary Math. This is a triumph in itself, but knowing that she is a full time first grade teacher and full time mom to three great kids makes this feat even greater! 

When trying to decide what kind of #Disneyside celebration I should have, this was the first thing that came to my mind! S loves Disney and when they visited on the 4th of July last year, they were chosen as grand marshals for the parade! 

T helped me sort all of the swag into little piles. He also may or may not have climbed into the American Tourister suitcase. 
T and I stuffed reusable goody bags (Publix) with all of the #disneyside swag. We also threw in a book or two. I mean, our guests are teachers after all! 
We had a student sneak around so all of the teachers could sign her graduation cap/card.
After borrowing a few Disney dishes from our friend K, we were ready to set up! We had cupcakes with little Mickey ears and a variety of Better Brand chips (yum and gluten free) with hummus, spinach dip, bean dip and salsa. 
S was totally surprised! My team was also super excited about their goody bags! E said she knew as soon as her son saw the goody bag he would think they were off to Disney! I'll be sure to slide the planning DVD onto her desk this week. :)
A big highlight of our #Disneyside celebration was the the Walt Disney inspiration wall. I printed several quotes attributed to Mr. Disney and posted them for all to see. They just make you smile and feel good. We've decided to leave this up...maybe until the end of the year. 

I must say, celebrating our #Disneyside with my team was great. We all talked about how we should do it more often, just get together and celebrate what is going on in our lives. Honoring our friend and her accomplishments was also amazing. Sometimes life gets busy and we are always waiting to move to the next thing. This Disney Side @Home Celebration was a little reminder to me that I need to STOP and celebrate. I need to celebrate my family, my students, my friends, my colleagues, and sometimes-myself. 

I hope that you will show your #disneyside soon and I hope that you will remember to CELEBRATE YOU! 

Thank you Disney Side @Home for the opportunity!

I received free products for this celebration but all opinions are my own....as always!

Hmmmm....How To Show My Disney Side?

Thursday, March 13, 2014 No comments
I love Disney. We all know it. I love the movies, Walt Disney World, and Mickey. 

Imagine my joy when I was chosen to host a #Disneyside Home Celebration! I.was.ecstatic.

To be honest, I wasn't quite sure what would be involved, and then my American Tourister suitcase arrived. It was a beautiful green and I stared at for two whole minutes before opening it.
Inside this party in case was everything I needed to host my own Disney celebration. There were Ocean Spray Craisins (T's favorite,) cupcake holders, Mickey cookie cutters, Disney decorations and disposable tableware, Disney vacation DVD, recipe cards from The Chew, calendars with info about Muppets Most Wanted, the most adorable Mickey and Minnie poster EVER, ESPN Sports and Run Disney cheer cards, HP photo cards, trivia, tattoos and more. 

Lucky for me, Disney thought everything (as usual.) They created a facebook group where we could share ideas and chat about our parties. It's an open group, so come check it out! I've made lots of new friends and found TONS of great ideas for home and school!

But what, oh what kind of celebration would I have? 

birthday? too late
anniversary? too late
ladies night out? I wish
Valentine's Day? not my thing

Hmmmm....check back tomorrow to see what I decided! 

What We're Reading Sunday!

Sunday, March 9, 2014 No comments
Thanks for checking out our weekly feature, What We're Reading Sunday! 

T had his book fair at school this week. He had 13 books on his wishlist. That in itself made me so happy! We did not buy all 13, but here are few of the ones we picked up along with his choice for his classroom. :)
great story, teaches a little lesson
Kid loves a map.
a classic
My favorite!!!! My class loved it, too! This one was new to me and is now top ten! Pictures are amazing!
and this is the one he picked for his class. Why? "Mommy I love Mo Willems."

But what about mommy? I read writing folders. I read my Time magazine. I read a couple of blogs. I read T's 15 page school narrative. That's right, his school sends a narrative with updates from all of his teachers. :)

What are you reading this week?

Throw Back Thursday

Thursday, March 6, 2014 No comments
Couldn't resist! 
me, my big brother, and little sister
me and A, I'm thinking she was 2
right before T's second Easter! 

Happy memories on a throwback Thursday!

Mrs. Wishy Washy

Monday, March 3, 2014 7 comments
The two biggest influences on teachers are their collaborating teacher and the teachers they had as learners. 

Lester Laminack shared that bit of research a few weeks ago at his amazing Lola and Lester workshop. As I drove home that day, I thought about my own teachers and my collaborating teacher. Which one did have more influence on me? While I can say I had some AMAZING teachers, I believe my collaborating teacher, Cathy Jefferson, has impacted me the most. Cathy is a great teacher. She loves what she does and never stops learning. Her passion inspired me and it still does 11 years later. I can be standing in my first grade classroom now and think to myself, "What would Cathy do in this situation?" 

Cathy also loves literature. She is an animated reader and introduced me to some of my now favorite authors. She loves Mrs. Wishy Washy by Joy Cowley and she shared that love with me! I've been a fan for 11+ years and turn to Joy Cowley's works immediately when helping a struggling reader. I also love reading the books to my own son and he is a huge fan, too. 
T's favorite!
If you love Mrs. Wishy Washy OR want to read your very first one, go enter Hameray's contest! Click HERE or on the pic to enter to win over $800 in Joy Cowley goodies! AHH! (I really want to win!) You can enter for your favorite teacher or parent, too! 
Hameray has also been so kind to sponsor a giveaway just for my readers! Someone is going to win their own Joy Cowley big book!! Please enter yourself and/or your favorite teacher! 
Be sure to check out Hameray online (Pinterest, too!) for fun lessons, meaningful printables, and great articles! 

Thanks for entering both and good luck! 


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