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January 26, 2014

SNOW Much Going On

I haven't seen my students in a full week. Crazy, right? We had last Monday off for Martin Luther King's birthday, and the following day, we got about five inches of snow, along with freezing temperatures and strong winds. Schools were closed Wednesday through Friday, as a result.

I took this pic on Thursday afternoon when we got a second round of snow. It probably doesn't look like much to those of you from the midwest, but the roads were ridiculous. 

I spent my days off, getting organized and cleaning (after I finished my grades and data, of course). I rearranged my crafting supplies, went through my recipe binder and got rid of the recipes that I've never tried, and I even finished getting my math manipulatives organized and re-labeled!

These Dollar Tree "Gladware" containers are UH-mazing. I bought twenty of them, and I labeled them with polka dot labels to match my classroom.

Cute, right?

I also grabbed three packs of these adorable small containers. Ten for $1.00! I use these to put dice in when my students are playing math games (the containers keep the dice from flying across the room!).

Before our unexpected week off, my students had been working hard on animal research projects in writing. I've been using Susan Moran-Jones' Common Core Writing for 1st Grade pack, and I have been amazed by what my students have been able to do! They have chosen an animal that they'd like to learn more about, completed their research (using library books and other resources), and they have been working on their illustrations and captions.

This little guy was SO excited to learn more about lions!

This little cutie was really into learning about hippos. He was concentrating so hard!

I love how this project has brought students together who might not have worked together otherwise.

A completed illustration and caption. I love it!

I'm excited to get back to work on our writing tomorrow! I hope my kiddos haven't lost their enthusiasm during their week off!

I'm really excited to share the other project that I've been working on. I completed a Valentine's Day literacy pack, and I'm tickled with how it turned out (especially considering that it's my first attempt at something like this). The pack has six different activities, most of which are Common Core aligned.

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Im-in-Love-With-Valentines-Day-Literacy-Activities-1079333
Cover Page

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Im-in-Love-With-Valentines-Day-Literacy-Activities-1079333
Write the Room (so fun!)

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Im-in-Love-With-Valentines-Day-Literacy-Activities-1079333
Vowel Sort Coloring Page

Click on any of the pics to go to my TPT store. I'd love your feedback!

Enjoy the rest of your weekend, and stay warm!

January 5, 2014

January Currently

I'm so excited to link up with Farley for her January Currently linky party!


Listening: It's cold and rainy here, and the kids and KShaf have built an impressive tent under the dining room table. There is a lot of squealing and screaming going on because the dog keeps trying to join in the fun.

Loving: We returned to school on Thursday of this past week, only to have a 90-minute fog delay (I love teaching on the Eastern Shore!). On Friday, we had a snow day! I have gotten so much accomplished in the past three days...I wish we had a three-day weekend every weekend.

Thinking: We were sitting around in our PJs this morning after breakfast (made by my kind and talented husband) when there was a knock on our back door. One of KShaf's coworkers stopped by to drop off a dozen and a half fresh, raw oysters. Too bad I can't stomach oysters...but I'm sure that KShaf and Deedle will enjoy them!

Wanting: Facebook is a dangerous thing. I saw this great link to Charlotte Russe's riding boot sale, and I grabbed two pairs of awesome boots (one black, one brown) for less than $50 (plus, they accept PayPal, so I was able to pay for part of it with my TPT profits)!

Needing: Between an overactive dog and two small children, my throw pillows have taken a beating the past few years. I think it's time to invest in some new ones, ASAP!

Memory and/or Tradition: Since we spend the holidays in Pennsylvania with KShaf's family, we almost always have a white Christmas. One of my favorite memories of this past Christmas was watching the kiddos sprinkle reindeer food in the freshly fallen snow for Santa's reindeer. 


Head on over to Farley's blog and link up! Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

January 3, 2014

Five for Friday

It's been ages since I linked up with Doodle Bugs Five for Friday linky party...I'm so excited!


I'd like to say that I've been up to all kinds of exciting things this past week, but honestly, I've been doing a lot of reading and more than my share of hot chocolate drinking.

We spent a wonderful week in Pennsylvania, celebrating Christmas with KShaf's family. We even had a white Christmas!

Notice that both kids are wearing rain boots, not snow boots. It rained nonstop for the first weekend that we were there, but on Christmas Eve, the rain magically turned to snow.

We had a few days at home to recover from the long drive, and then on Sunday, we went to my parents' house to celebrate with my family.

Princess A got the entire Barbie: A Pony Tale line of toys (and the movie, of course!). Notice KShaf in the background, assembling Deedle's new train track. 

On New Year's Eve, I finally motivated to get a long overdue haircut. I started growing my hair long last year (partly for my hubby, but also, because I'd like to donate it when it gets long enough), and I've only gotten it trimmed a handful of times. My hair is crazy thick and super heavy, so I asked my new stylist to add some style to it (translation: long layers). 

I'm still getting used to having layers...I've never been a big fan of them, but I have to admit, my hair feels 30 pounds lighter! (Sidenote: KShaf hates these glasses, but I am so in love with them, I wear them almost every day! Thoughts? Opinions?)

We had made plans for New Year's Eve months in advance, but the day before NYE, our plans fell through. So, at the last minute, we decided to go here for dinner with the kiddos.

I had a ridiculously good filet with grilled asparagus and mashed potatoes (and a glass of amazing Cabernet Sauvignon), and KShaf had the prime rib. Our kids don't like typical kids' menu food (chicken tenders, mac and cheese, pizza, etc.), so they shared with us. They love a good steak! We came home, watched Up!, and we were all in bed by 10:00. Now, that's the way to spend New Year's Eve!

On New Year's Day, the kids and I met up with a friend and her twins for coffee at my favorite coffee place in town. 

Hot chocolate and a banana-blueberry muffin for the kidlets, and a Chai tea latte for me. Great way to kick off the new year!

Today, we have a legitimate snow day: we got about six inches of snow, here on the Eastern Shore! They made the call last night, so we all got to "sleep in" this morning (I use that term loosely, since my kids don't typically sleep past 6:00!). Unfortunately, it was also incredibly cold and windy, and the kids couldn't spend much time outside, playing in the snow. But, they managed about ten minutes before they insisted coming inside for PJs and hot chocolate.

Yes, Deedle is drinking his hot chocolate in his Titanic mug that Gram and Pop Pop gave him for Christmas.

Off to finish dinner (Chicken, Rice, and Cheddar Soup and Corn and Cheddar Muffins...thanks, Iowa Girl Eats!)...enjoy your weekend, and be sure to go link up!