Saturday, December 31, 2011

Insane Sale!

So my retired teacher mom said "you did WHAT?!?!?!?!" when I told her about the sale I just posted on TPT.  I have marked everything in my store down to $2 or less!!!  Yes, even my $8 mega packs!!!  Everything will stay $2 until I get a free moment tomorrow to put it all back to original prices.  Enjoy!

Click here to go directly to my shop!


Friday, December 30, 2011

Winter Reading Incentive & A Freebie

I'm gearing up to go back to school on the about you?  As soon as we get back, it is time for my annual Blizzard of Books Challenge!  If you live in a place where you get snow up to your knees and temperatures that would scare a polar bear, you know how often your kiddos get outside to let off some steam in the winter.  They get all holed up inside playing the Wii or watching TV when we are praying and wishing that they would {just this once} read a book.  My Blizzard of Books has helped spark the love of reading in my students for the last 10 years!!!  Even if they only get fired up during the months of January and February, it is totally worth every minute!  And then, thankfully, comes March is Reading month to hold them over for one more month.  : )

Click on the picture below to find out more!

And for a little freebie for those of you who need a quick and easy math center for Chinese New on the picture below to grab it up!


Happy New Year!!!!!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Cupcakes and Chinese New Year! {& My Top 3}

So cupcakes and Chinese New Year have nothing in common except for the fact that I have just added a Cupcake Contractions Activity and a Chinese New Year Activity Pack on TPT.  : )  Click on the pictures below to check them out!  : )

I'm pretty darn excited about my Chinese New Year Activity Pack because there is nothing similar on TPT.  I think it is due to the fact that there is NO clip art available for this theme.  I found a sweet girl from "across the pond" in England to make me some custom Chinese clip art so I could put this pack together.  : )  Gotta love Etsy!!!

Fern Smith is having a linky party for us to list our top 3 blog posts of 2011.  Here are my 3...

1.  My Common Core Standards Posters post...sadly I think this is the top post because it includes a little bit of blogging DRAMA.  People just love to read drama...right?

I'm currently sold out of these in my Etsy store, but if you are interested leave a comment in the comments with your email and what you are interested in.

 2.  My Secret Santa post...too late for you to benefit from this post this year, but you could tuck it away for next year!

3.  My Easy Folder Holders post...these have popped up all over Pinterest since my post.  Have you made them yet?  : )

Can't wait to see what 2012 brings!!!  Happy New Year!!!

Monday, December 26, 2011


Jen, I will be emailing you your prize pack!!!   Thanks to all of the donors and bloggers who played along!!!  I am so glad to have made so many new "blogging friends!" 

Friday, December 23, 2011

While You Are At The Store...

Today, the kids and I made cookies for Santa and our 90 year old neighbor, but we were missing one important detail...the SPRINKLES!  So...since I knew my hubby was already at the store, I called him and said, "While you are at the store, please pick up some Christmas sprinkles for the cookies."  I had to give him a little direction as to where in the world a store might keep sprinkles, but he agreed to the task.  (My husband is the type that doesn't venture into the grocery side of a store very often.)

So....30 minutes later, he arrives with THESE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The last time I checked, it wasn't Easter or the Fourth of July!!!!  My 5 year old even said, "Those don't look like Christmas sprinkles!"  I thanked the hubby for trying and we ended up with cookies that look like this:

Notice the "candy canes"... I managed to make them with the only sprinkles I did have on hand in the cupboard.
Pretty sad...but I know Santa won't mind and Mr. Morris, our neighbor really won't mind.  : )

If you have any Christmas craftiness left in your bones, you might want to give these guys a try!  Super easy and they don't require sprinkles!

Put the stick into a large marshmallow, dip in chocolate and lay them down on your already broken pretzel antlers.  Quickly add a red M&M for the nose and miniature white chocolate chips for the eyes.  Leave them laying on the wax paper until they are completely dry.  They are darling wrapped in a clear treat bag with a little curling ribbon.  I made these for friends at work, and they seemed to be a hit!

If you haven't entered my BIG giveaway yet, you have until midnight on Christmas Eve to do so.  You can click {HERE} to go straight there! 

I am sooooo looking forward to candle light service on Christmas Eve and Christmas morning with my 5 and 3 year old babies!!!!  Have a wonderful Christmas!!!!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Let's Get This Party {Giveaway} Started

I am knee deep in emails, pdfs, links and units (and Christmas shopping), but I wanted to get this party started!  I recently hit 600 followers and couldn't be happier!  I have learned so much in my blogging journey and have become a better teacher by being an extreme blogstalker.  I have "met" some amazing teachers along the way and I am so excited to bring you this HUGE giveaway!

Eighteen (18) TPT sellers have donated a favorite item from their stores!  To enter, you will need to follow the blogs and TPT stores and leave a comment for each store/blog that you follow.  The giveaway will end at midnight EST on Christmas Eve (December 24th).  One lucky winner will be randomly chosen and their winnings will be sent via email shortly after Christmas Day.

PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE leave your email in your comments so I can easily send you your huge pack of units/games if you win!  Remember to leave a comment when you follow a blog or store (one comment for each).

Here we go....

1.  ME!!!  Follow my blog (to your right) and follow my TPT store (link to your right as well).

2.  Andrea from Stepping Into First Grade and her TPT store

3.  Deanna from Mrs. Jump's Class and her TPT store

4.  Jenaya from Lesson Plan Diva and her TPT store

5.  Rachelle from What the Teacher Wants and her TPT store

6.  Linda from Primary Inspiration and her TPT store

7.  Shelley from Teaching in the Early Years and her TPT store

8.  Karla from Life in Special Education and her TPT store

9.  Lisa's TPT store (no teaching blog)

10.  Heather from Hojo's Teacher Store and her TPT store

11.  Anna from Crazy For First Grade and her TPT store

12.  Donna from Peace Love Learning and her TPT store

13.  Amanda from A Special Kind of Class and her TPT store

14.  Michelle from Creative Classroom 123 and her TPT store

15.  Hilary from Rockin Teacher Materials and her TPT store

16.  Carolyn from The Wise Owl Factory and her TPT store

17.  Mel from Seusstastic and her TPT store

18.  Jodi from Fun-In-First and her TPT store

WHEW!!!!  Did you get all of them?  Isn't this amazing!!!  I am so excited to use this weekend to pick a winner!!!!  Thanks for playing along!!!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Christmas Tree Snack and More!

Are you looking for a fun, but healthy snack for your holiday parties?  Try this one!!!  You will need a Styrofoam cone, red and green grapes, a star fruit and toothpicks.

It is fun to put it on a plate with some shredded coconut for the "snow."  What fun food do you have at your celebrations?

Remember this post when I posted our parent gift idea?  Well, here are a few from my kiddos.  I thought they turned out pretty darn cute!  My room smelled like a paint factory after school today...but it will be so worth it when they are good and dry on Monday morning.

And one more was like Christmas today in my room when a mom showed up with this:

A whole bunch of goodies for our classroom!!!!  I have a little "donation" display out on our lockers, and she fulfilled a ton of my classroom supply wishes!!!  I was soooooo excited!  If you are interested in my Sweet Donations pack, click HERE

5 more wake-up days and then a well needed 17 days off!!!  Can't wait!!!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

12 Dogs of Christmas

If you have not heard of this Christmas book, you need to head on over to Amazon and get yourself a copy!!  It includes a CD of the song that is so fun to listen to!  This has been a favorite of mine (I have a habit of saying that every picture book in my library is a favorite of mine) since I did my student teaching back in 2001.  My cooperating teacher bought a copy for me and now every year right before the holidays, I play it for my kids.  They beg me to play it over and over again.  It kind of reminds me of the excitement they had when I first played Pete the Cat for them!!!  I tried to find a sample of the song on the Internet, but had no luck.  You will just have to buy it and hear it for yourself!!!

What is your favorite holiday book?  I think A Wish To Be a Christmas Tree comes in a close second for me!!  Polar Express used to be on the top of my list until the movie came out and ruined the magic that the book had on its own. 

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Parent Volunteer Gifts

Every year around the holidays, I like to give my parent volunteers a little gift to thank them for coming and helping in our classroom.  I have been known to send my poor husband into Home Depot on Black Friday (when in fact, he secretly loves to be sent there) to grab the beautiful poinsettias that are just 99 cents!!!  He says he has nightmares for days after of little old ladies shoving him out of the way to get their hands on the little red plants.

This year I have NINE awesome moms that come in once a week or once every other week to help with our intervention block time.  Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday I have a parent in my room helping with sight word games or math intervention tubs.  I wish I could take them all to Hawaii...they deserve so much more than those 99 cent poinsettias, so I made them these:

You need a clear acrylic frame, scrapbook paper, cooridnating ribbon, ink pens and sticky notes to make these adorable sticky note holders.  A few glue dots or a hot glue gun wouldn't hurt to have on hand as well.  Trim your scrapbook paper to fit inside the frame.  Add embellishments inside or outside of the frame, which ever you choose.  Attach the sticky note pad with glue dots or a dab of hot glue so they stay on.  I also found a four pack of matching pastel ink pens at the dollar store that work perfectly!!!  Wrap in a clear treat bag and tie with some ribbon and you have got yourself a pretty awesome gift!!!  I am also making them for my kids' preschool teachers with a little bible verse "fancied up with embellishments" inside the frame. 

My coworkers tease me because this is type of a project is so NOT me at all.  Me + scrapbook paper are usually not said in the same sentence.  ; )  

What do you do for your parent volunteers?

In case you missed my post last {HERE} to see what my students make for their own parents for the holidays!

Saturday, December 3, 2011


I have watched tutorials, read blog design tips, looked at DIY blog articles and messed with HTML codes until I couldn't see straight.  I finally got rid of the pastel blue background, birds and butterflies, found a background to match my header, and installed it.  I think I lost a few strands of hair in the process...

And I have decided that HTML stands for this:

How in the HELL-O do
Make it
Look so easy?


How many
Thousands of
Monkeys did it take to make up this

I am not in love with what I ended up with, so I might play with it a little more later.  : )

I'm making my parent gifts this weekend and will post directions and pictures, soon!

Bound and Determined

I am bound and determined to do a little DIY blog makeover!!!  Please pardon the construction mess as I play with things...