Ring in the New Year with a Sale and a Linky Party! Yay!

Hello Friends!


My friends and I at Blog Hoppin are celebrating the end of 2013 and the beginning of 2014 with a sale! Hurray! All our stores will be on sale from December 31 - January 1. Click the image above to take you my store and click HERE for our Blog Hoppin links.

AND........ Blog Hoppin is hosting a super fun linky party starting January 1! Stay tuned for more details!


Happy New Year Everyone!!!


2014 New Year's Resolutions

Hello Friends!

As 2013 nears to a close, I am finding myself thinking back over the year. I usually am not one to make big New Year's resolutions in January; I usually save mine for Back to School! But 2013 brought such big changes in my life that I feel the need to reflect. I am linking up with "A Peach for the Teach" blog and sharing my 2013 New Year's Resolutions.....


Enjoy the precious time I am given with my children and to thank God daily for the gift of them!

The biggest change in my life was the marriage of my son in January. They will be celebrating their one year anniversary this year; so hard to believe they have been married a year. As a Mom, you want only happiness for your children and I know for a fact that my son is happy! But, that said, it has been an adjustment for me.... The weekly phone calls have decreased to every other week and I am not his "go to" person anymore (smile). It is his lovely wife, of course, and that is as it should be!

Another change in my life has been the employment of my beautiful daughter! She graduated in Art and has been searching for employment for over a year. Finally, she was offered a position at the theater company in which she interned. I am so happy that she is now able to gain confidence in herself and her ability to support herself! Unfortunately, because she is working in a theater environment, their busy times are the holidays. We all know how much we enjoy taking time to enjoy theatrical productions, but do we ever think about the families of the production staff and actors/dancers/artists who create these venues? They are giving up their time to bring us enjoyment and I will always be appreciative of the sacrifices they make for our enjoyment!

Get back into a weekly exercise routine!

A HUGE change in my life this year was the surgery I had on my foot in July. Besides starting school in a surgical boot, I found that my balance has been off a bit and I have taken a few hard falls since the surgery. Lucky for me, I have strong bones and have experienced no injuries from the falls other than bruises. Also, I have become a bit lax with my exercising which probably accounts for some of the imbalance. I need to get back into walking, riding, and weights again! The GOOD thing about the surgery is that I no longer feel pain in my feet and I am able to wear shoes that I haven't been able to wear for years!

Explore the Next Generation Science Standards and do some purging of files!
In my professional/classroom life, I want to explore the Next Generation Science Standards and compare/contrast them to our present curriculum. I am so blessed to work in a school that allows us to retain units/themes that we feel are critical to foundational learning in our students i.e. patterning in kindergarten! So, I am excited to delve into the Science standards and become as comfortable with them as I am with the ELA and Math Common Core Standards.

I also want to go through old files! Yikes! As much as I try to keep my filing under control, by this time of year, I am once again overwhelmed with all that has NOT been filed! My "To Be Filed" tray is out of control and my file tubs are bursting at the seams. I need to take a big girl breath and dispose of outdated files! Enough already of feeling that "I might need that someday!"

Continue  to try to write at least once a week.

I love writing here! Even if  no one reads what I write, it is therapy for me! Plus I like having a place where I can share ideas AND I have really, really enjoyed the new friends I have made in my blogging adventure!

To finish a quilt I started YEARS ago!

I have always loved to sew and some of my strongest memories are of sitting at my sewing machine and creating some really fun one-of-a-kind projects.  But as with many things, my sewing as taken the back burner for a few years. This year, I want to take time to finish the quilt that I started  many years ago.  I also want to work in my garden this summer. Because of my  foot surgery, I was unable to garden and my garden missed me! Quilting and gardening are going to be high on my "TO DO" list!

So that's it for now... Make sure you click on the image above and join the linky party!

As this year grows to a close, I wish you all health and happiness in 2014. I plan to close the computer for a few days and enjoy my family and catch up on my reading!

Until next time!


Christmas Around the World, our Nativities, and a YUMMY Christmas Fruit Salad

Hello Friends!

Yes, once again, I am writing that it has been TOO LONG since I last posted! I just have to say that being a kindergarten teacher at Christmas time is EXHAUSTING and time just flies by - whew! But yesterday was the beginning of our Christmas break and I thought I would take some time to share a few things before I put my computer away for awhile and enjoy my family....
First, I start with something not teaching related! I found this yummy fruit salad on Pinterest, but the link was broken and it just gave me the picture; so I cannot attach a link to the picture. (Sad - If you know the link, let me know and I will attach it!) Doesn't it look yummy and festive? It is raspberries, pineapple, pomegranate seeds, and Kiwi! The garnish is mint leaves with fresh squeezed lime juice. This is going to be on my Christmas dinner table this year, for sure!

Every December we make these adorable Christmas nativities from cups and Styrofoam balls. I love them!!
One of my favorite units to teach is Christmas Around the World. We have so much fun with this unit and doing it with kinders is the best! We can set up our chairs and pretend to take a jet ride and they truly get into the whole experience! I am the captain and I project an image from the window of a jet on my Promethean board. After we take off, I then become the flight attendant and pass out snacks for our flight. We look for flags of the countries that we are visiting, have passports, and learn a Christmas custom from each country! The kids create a page in their book about each custom and have a wonderful keepsake to share with their families when we are finished.  So much fun!!

If you are looking for a fun unit to do when you return from break, I always do a unit on how animals survive the cold winter. It is another keepsake book that my kiddos create.  Click the image to take you to the link!

Finally, I wish all of you a very blessed and joyful holiday! Try to relax and put yourself and your family first!

Until next time!

Remembering Sandy Hook

As educators, we remember and honor our fallen colleagues and their students from Sandy Hook School. We honor them each day in our classrooms in which we continue their dream of teaching our children. We honor their memory with our service. Join with teachers everywhere in committing random acts of kindness to show our love for Sandy Hook.

Rudolph in the Window, Gingerbread Houses, Elves, Teachers Helping Tornado Victimes, and Five For Friday!

Hello Friends!

Oh gosh.... It feels like such a long time since I have written here! This time of year is so busy as so many of you understand!

1.  Here are a few pictures of our gingerbread house making.......

2.  I love these reindeer pressing their noses against the window! Here and here are the links where I found the idea. I added a writing aspect to them. My kiddos made these during a literacy center rotation. I gave them the step by step illustrations for completing their reindeer and they were FULLY independent! Yay! Click the image to download the step by step directions!


These are the ones that my wonderful co-worker, Lisa did with her kiddos.......

3.  Everyone has their own little elf project..... Here are some pictures of mine!

4.  Here is a picture of one of my bulletin boards.......

Here is a picture of my door....... This is NOT my original idea, but the link to the original owner of the idea is broken, so I cannot add it here. If it is your idea, let me know and I will add your link! I have had SO many compliments on this door!

5.  Finally, our Illinois Tornado Relief store is still open! Here is a link to the post I wrote for Blog Hoppin. There are so many wonderful resources included in these bundles for a very reasonable price. Remember ALL the profit that we make from these bundles will go the Central Illinois Red Cross to help victims of the tornado that crossed through Central Illinois almost a month ago. Thank you!!


Don't forget to visit Doodle Bugs Teaching for more Five For Friday ideas!

Until next time!


Show Us What you Bought!

Hello Friends!

I am joining my Blog Hoppin friends and sharing what I have bought - so far!!

First off, I purchased the WINTER bundle for the Central Illinois Tornado Relief package! I cannot wait to use all the awesome resources included!


I also LOVE this MAGIC ELF pack from Teacher Bits and Bobs! In this pack, the Elf leaves notes everyday encouraging children to practice the TRUE meaning of Christmas! LOVE IT!!


I purchased Deanna Jump's FALL MATH JOURNAL PROMPTS this year and my students loved them so much, I had to get the WINTER MATH JOURNAL PROMPTS.


I love The Printable Princess stuff and I couldn't resist purchasing "LETS GET CRACKIN DECEMBER LITERACY AND MATH ACTIVITIES


I actually used this packet from Karen Stamp this morning with my kiddos and it was wonderful! Karen has included some really wonderful CVC word practice activities. We will do all the activities this week in reading groups and then I will put them in a center next week. Love them!!


That's it for now! But..... there's still tomorrow, right????

Okay.... it is NOW Tuesday and I visited the sale AGAIN! Here is what I bought today!

Popcorn Word Wall posters from FROM THE POND! I think these will be awesome to hang up around the room and will be especially nice for differentiation!


I love Krista Wallden's clip art and I couldn't resist these adorable graphics!!





And another favorite of mine.... Melonheadz..... I couldn't resist these Christmas kidlets!


These skinny frames by Teacher Laura will be great to use for creating black lines!


Until next time!!


Central Illinois Tornado Relief Bundles, a HUGE Cyber Monday Sale AND if you make it to the bottom of this post, a FREEBIE!

Hello Friends!
First off, I have to say that I am greatly overwhelmed by the generosity of so many teachers. After the devastating tornadoes that hit Illinois on November 17,  a few of us woke up on that following Monday morning with the nagging question "What can I do to help?" Well........ I am so excited to say that through the generosity of so many wonderful, kind hearted teachers, we were able to create five AMAZING bundles filled with AMAZING resources from AMAZING teacher/bloggers!  And with the aid of our AMAZING partner, Teachers Pay Teachers, Amanda Pauley from Mrs. Pauley's Kindergarten, Kyp McLaren from Mrs. McLauren's Little Super Stars, and I are very humbled to announce that our store has opened and will remain open through the entire month of December! 100% of our profit will be given to the Central Illinois American Red Cross! Yay!

Here are the bundles that we are offering... You will find MANY of your favorite teacher/bloggers included in ALL of them!




If you can find it in your heart to donate towards this cause, I KNOW that it will make a difference to these strong and struggling people! AND you can use the TPT code CYBER to receive the TPT discount on December 2 and 3! Here is a link to some photographs taken by amateur photographers of the tornado damage in Gifford, Illinois. I taught second grade at Gifford Grade School for 7 years and I continue to feel a connection to this town.

On another note...........

My entire store will be on sale at a 20% discount on December 2 and 3. With the discount from TPT, that adds up to a 28% discount! Yay!


Here are a few of my new and favorite units!





 And since you made it all the way to the bottom of this post, here is a freebie for you!


Have a wonderful week, my Friends!

Until next time!