Sunday, June 16, 2013

Happy Father's Day!


Monday, May 27, 2013

Memorial Day

Sunday, March 17, 2013

St. Patrick's Day

March 17th is one of my favorite days of the year, St. Patrick's Day.  I am a granddaughter of William and Bernice Clancy and cousin to the O'Briens.  We LOVE this holiday and all it's festivities from parades, wearing of the green, to eating corn beef and cabbage and for some even drinking  green beer!  In our family several traditions have carried on throughout  the years.

 One of the traditions our family partakes in is parades and food.  That's my mom and niece at a restaurant after a St. Patrick's Day parade, in South Carolina.    Corn beef and cabbage is definitely on the menu for this holiday!

This is my cousin from the O'Brien clan-Suzy Toronto.  She also has a very creative business called Wacky Wonderful Women.  Her business creates stationary products, mugs, coffee mugs and even Irish items.  If you're not familiar with her product line check her out!  She celebrates St. Patrick's Day full out from Christmas till this day.  I feel lucky that after losing touch with her for over twenty years we have reconnected!

This is a claddagh charm.  In Irish tradition mothers give these to their daughters to be passed on to generations.  There are also claddagh rings that are used for engagement and wedding rings.  The meaning behind this signature piece of jewlery is the hands on each sign stand for friendship, the heart in the middle represents love and the crown stands for loyalty.  My mother has four daughters so she gave each of us a charm to place on a necklace since the ring traditionally symbolizes engaged or married. I love mine!  I wear it daily as my Irish signature.

Corn beef and cabbage dinners are our yearly tradition with all the fixings such as potatoes, green beans, and capped with a brew of Irish coffee.  YUM!

My Irish table is set with green candles, leprechauns, gold charger plates and gold glasses.  I sprinkled a little green and gold shamrock confetti for a little sparkle when the candles are lit.

How do you celebrate St. Patrick's Day?  Thanks for stopping by and come by again!!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

This winter I spotted a very attractive window display in a cupcake shop.  I asked the cupcake shop owner if she made the window displays and she said no someone else made them.  Hoping to find out how she made them I walked out of the shop and stared and studied how I could improvise my own decor for my classroom.

I just happened to have a stash of cotton balls and a ball of white yarn. I measured the windows in my classroom and estimated I could make eight strands of cotton balls easily.  After measuring my yarn and cutting six lengths I started stringing the cotton balls onto the yarn with the needle.

This is a close-up of the string of "snowballs" on my classroom window.  I know, I know, where's the snow in Michigan?   I put this up just before we had our snow storms in February and now the landscape is blanketed in snow that is just starting to melt!

The kids thought these were the coolest thing!  Once the snow appeared on the landscape it was a perfect backdrop to this window display.  Would do you think?  An easy and quick project that made a big impact.

Thanks for stopping by and come back again!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Dr. Seuss Celebration Night

A week ago my elementary building kicked off Dr. Seuss Reading Month with a Literacy Night.  We had games, prizes and guest readers.  Here are a few pics of the activities of this night.
Our former kindergarten teachers, Jodie and Marsha,  as readers Thing 1 and Thing 2.  Aren't they festive?'

Our high school mascot The Colt reading to children.

Out staff taking time out from the festivities for a photo op.

This is our local volunteer fireman in our community , Larry Foster Goodrich who also happens to be one of our school board members.  Larry loves to help and volunteer all the time.

This is a "Hungry Caterpillar" that our librarian Lisa Watson created.  She punched out circles on the Ellison Die-Cut and gave each class a set of circles.  Each student that gets a 100% on their AR test writes their name and the book title on the circle and take it to the library to attach to the caterpillar.  The goal is to have the caterpillar stretched around the entire library by the end of the month!  She already has 560 book titles up!! Kids are amped up!

The big prize for the night was a bike that was housed in our school showcase all week.  Kids goggled over it and were overheard saying, "that's the bike I'm gonna win".  Here is our principal Susan Caswell and a National Honor Student announcing the winner. A big shout out to the National Honor Society Students who primarily put this celebration together for our students!  Bravo!

Thanks for stopping by hope you got some ideas for Dr. Seuss month!  I'd love to hear some of your ideas of what you're doing to celebrate!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss!

Friday night we kicked off the Read Across America Celebration with Dr. Seuss at our school.  We invited parents and students to take part in many activities which I will include in another post.  For today I am posting pictures of all our classroom doors we decorated to jump start the month of celebration.  Each teacher decorated their door from one of the Dr. Seuss books.  Can you guess where each of them came from?

The Cat In The Hat

Thing One and Thing Two


Horton Hears a Who

Fox on Socks

Dr. Seuss ABC

The decorated themed doors added alot of flavor to our Dr. Seuss celebration night.  I'll post tomorrow some of the activities we did!
 Thanks for stopping by and---Keep on Reading Across America!!


Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Apps For the Week

Part of my New Year's resolution was to eat healthy and lose weight.  My son turned me on to this app at I tunes called Lose It.   It calculates how much weight you want to lose and by when.  Then it will give you the amount of calories you need daily.  As you have a meal you enter the food and it counts down how many calories you have left.  It's super easy and has some other functions as well but haven't tapped into them.   The super duper part is it's FREE!  Love those free apps!!

SPLASH MATH is an app I use in my classroom on my IPAD.  My first graders love this and some kids practice on their own when they've finished their work.  Some of the second graders are using this app also  with success.  Again, this app is free and is available on Iphone and iPad.

Description Splash Math is a fun and innovative way to practice math. With 13 chapters covering over 185 math skills and an endless supply of problems, it is by far the most comprehensive math workbook in the app store.

★ WINNER of "Best Elementary Student App" (2011), by
★ Featured in Apple's "Staff Favorite"
★ Featured in New and Noteworthy

 Try them out and tell me what you think.  Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Pinterest Favorites

Here are a few Pinterest tips that I have tried and found to be successful.
1.  Essie and Nutri Nails.  Being a teacher my hands are always in water and getting dried out in my classroom.  I'm constantly chipping and snagging nails. I found this idea on Pinterest and felt I nothing to lose.  I've used acrylics and the maintenance  gets expensive.  So I bought my Nutri Nail Gel Perfect kit and Essie color at Walgreen.     I followed the directions on the box and used my own Essie nail color. I added the Essie 3 way glaze over the top for a shiny coat.  Couldn't believe how long my polished lasted-for at least a week! No more chipping.  It's worth trying!

2.  State painted  canvas
My daughter in law made 5 of these for one of my other daughter in law for Christmas of all the places they had lived and were stationed at in the Army.  It was so amazing and I just thought it was such a well thought out gift of the heart.

3.  Sterilite Drawers
I was so tired of the  plain clear sterilite drawers in my classroom. When I saw this idea on Pinterest I was so excited to see such an easy idea to mask a Plain Jane drawer unit.   Just adding scrapbooking paper and crinkled border added a punch of color to the room.  Ingenious and so simple!

4.  Milk Crate Listening Center

This was such a clever idea I found on Pinterest!  We had some left over crates at our school.  Rustoleum just came out with spray paint for laminate so I was able to spray paint a few crates in red and blue.  Our school theme was Patriotic, so I decorated everything in the classroom red, white and blue.  I had my hubby cut out plywood to fit the tops and I covered it with foam and patriotic material.  I placed a cd player,  book,  and cd in each crate.  Kids LOVE this center!  They sit on top of the crate and listen away!!

5.  Beer Cheese Dip

 This dip was so easy and delicious!  I took this to several tailgating events and the Superbowl and came back home with an empy bowl!  Just mix 2-8ounce cream cheese, 1/3 cup beer, 1 envelope Ranch Dressingmix and 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese and voila!  YUM!

These are just a few of my favorites let me know some of your own!  Love to hear them!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Downton Abbey

In December I heard  buzz about a show called Downton Abbey on PBS.  I had never seen it so my husband and I made it a point to watch the season premiere when it came on in January.  We are HOOKED!! It is rich in dialogue and moves so quickly from scene to scene it has captivated us.  It is now our Sunday night highlight for entertainment.

I came across this cookbook on Pinterest which I decided I would take a few recipes to have on Sunday and maybe a treat to eat during the show.

   Happy Sunday and check out this show if you haven't already!  I'll be sharing some snow decor this week that I put up in my classroom last week.  Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Snow Day

Every year we are allotted 5 snow days before we have to start making them up.  This year we have had only one day for snow in December.  It's been a tough school year for all of us and a snow day would  be a guilt free way to feel detached from all of the competitive demands of a school day.  Sort of like a skier who has been skiing down moguls all day and needs to take a rest and gets a break when the chair lift experiences technical difficulties and the resort needs to close for the day.  We got one snow day on Tuesday.  When we went back on Wednesday, my staff seemed out of sorts complaining one snow day just didn't seem long enough.   So Wednesday night as I was hunkered down on my laptop in the family room with a blazing fire thriving I noted an abundance of snowflakes falling outside.  At that same time I saw the quote below on Pinterest!! So I started to pray, and pray some more.  We got another snow day Thursday!! God answers prayers.  

Friday, January 4, 2013

20 Simple Things I Enjoy

On January 1st I started my 365 Daily Project with gusto!  One glitch though I didn't comprise my 20 simple things I enjoy to do each day for the year.  After making the 365 list project it seemed sooooo daunting!!  But today I realized I needed to write a list of the simple things in life we take for granted that put a smile on our face.

I know, another list?  Hey, I'm a teacher we operate on lists! So here goes:

1. Take photos
2. Paint Furniture
3. Read
4. Watch romantic or Hallmark movies
5. Painting my nails
6 Reading or writing next to the fire and drinking hot tea
7. Download and listen to music on my IPOD
8. Playing Scrabble
9. Hot tub
10. Write a hand written note to someone
11. Seasonal nature walk
12. Watch a very funny movie
13. Try a new recipe
14. Bubble bath with candles lit after a long day
15. Attend writers group
16. Continue adding family photos to albums
17. Walk the dog
18. Learn something new
19. Ride my bike
20. Go out with friends 

I hope this inspires you to make a simple list for yourself!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

New Year Resolutions

Every year I feel compelled to write SOMETHING down as a New Year resolution for an attainable goal.  All over blogland I found  a couple of posts that intrigued me even more about this yearly tradition.  At Fairy Dust Teaching Sally Haughay has a workbook to work through what worked and didn't in 2012 and to map out a way to navigate through 2013 to avoid what didn't work.  Smart thinking, but that's too much work for me.  She researched the history of New Year resolutions.  She discovered  only 1% those that do not write down their resolutions accomplished them.  Those who wrote their resolutions down attained them at 44%.  Wow! Validates the theory of putting in the mind and writing it down makes it concrete.  I've been a firm believer in this action.

       I also researched resolutions on Marelisa Febrega's blog Daring to Live Fully.   I like her upbeat posts chuck full of positive living ideas.  Her post today is  about the A 365- Day Project which is associated with photograph yby taking a photo every day.  She adapts  this concept to New Year resolutions.  Marelisa offers several projects to create a habit that makes your goals attainable. She offered 25 ideas.

I combed her list and came up with a list of daily resolutions to get me to my end of year goals.  Take a look at her blog I took a few from her list and adjusted a few more to make an even 12.

MY 2013 365- DAY PROJECT
  1. Blog daily
  2. Meditate each morning
  3. Eat healthier and lose 10 pounds
  4. Write 750 words a day on Novel
  5. Edit and finish Children's Picture book till done
  6. Do something creative every day for a year and post it on blog
  7. Exercise 30 minutes a day
  8. Listen to a different TED talk each day 
  9. Work on TPT projects and submit monthly
  10. Advance my career
  11. Make a list of 20 small things that I enjoy doing and make sure I do one a day for the year.
  12. Work on Blue Mountain Art work
 It's a start and I will probably edit the first week of January.  Have you written down a resolution or two.? I'd love to hear what your resolutions are for the year!  Have an abundant 2013!