A Few of My Favorite Things

It's time to link up with Latoya for another one of her linky parties.  If you haven't seen this linky before, it's a great way to get to know some of your fellow bloggers.  Every Sunday she posts a new topic. 
This week's topic is favorites.  So, here we go:
Favorite Place to Shop
I tend to prefer a more casual wardrobe.  I am happiest in jeans and love to pair them with sweaters, fleece jackets, down vests, etc.  The nearest store to me is actually an outlet store, but I don't mind.

Favorite TV Show
I can still remember the day How I Met Your Mother first aired.  I love that the characters are my age and I can relate to them on so many levels.  I am so excited for the next "45 days" to go by so we can finally meet the mother!

Favorite Sweet Treat
Chocolate + Peanut Butter = Love at First Bite!!

Favorite Food
Pizza is one of those foods that I could eat again and again.  When I cook, we tend to have leftovers.  I'm not a big fan of leftovers, but when it comes to pizza, I will eat all of them.  I make my own pizza (crust and all), but my favorite pizza place is Spiro's. 

Favorite Restaurant
Red Robin...YUM!   My favorite is the Whiskey River BBQ Burger.
Now that you know some of my favorite things, head on over to Flying Into First and get to know some other bloggers, too.
Flying into First Grade

Zippin Down the Freebie Trail

Brenda from Primary Inspired has organized a fantastic Blog Hop.  There are 27 bloggers participating over the course of a week.  For each blog you visit, you can pick up a freebie.  Admit it . . . you love a good freebie, right?  I am one of the stops in the middle, so if you're just joining this hop, click the orange button above to start at the beginning (or click here if you are having trouble seeing the image above).
I have decided to  share two freebies with you. 
The first freebie I have for you is called "EGGS"panded Notation.  It is a game played like Memory or Concentration.  Students match a numbered egg to the basket with the expanded notation form written on it.  Click on the picture below to grab your own copy. 
The second freebie I have for you is a spring word search.

The blog hop continues with a stop at Me & Marie Learning.

**Note - if you cannot see the graphic above, click here to visit the next stop on the blog hop, which is Me & Marie Learning.

Lucky Line Designs

Thank you to all who played along in the 2 Truths & a Lie post last week.  Believe it or not, the lie was that I have never broken a bone.  I actually broke my first (and only) bone when I was 22.  I have never had my ears pierced and probably never will.  I also still have a perfect track record when it comes to cavities (though I haven't seen a dentist in almost 2 years). 
I realize St. Patrick's Day has come and gone, but I forgot I had these pictures on my camera.  My students learned about different types of lines.  They cut out three hearts.  Then they used pencil to made three different line designs.  After their designs were complete, they went over the line designs in green marker or pen.  The last step was to add a little stem, organize the hearts, and voila - lucky line designs were created.  Enjoy!

Make sure you come back on Tuesday.  I'm participating in a blog hop & you won't want to miss out on the links to some exciting freebies :)

Two Truths & a Lie

It's time for another round of Let's Get Acquainted!
This week's theme is 2 truths and 1 lie.  This sounded like fun and I couldn't resist!  I have played this game with students at the beginning of the year to get to know them better.  So, here are three statements.  Can you figure out which one of these is a lie?
 1. I have never broken a bone.
2. I have never had a cavity.
3. I have never had my ears pierced.
 If you want to play along, leave your guess in the comments section. You can also head over to Flying into First Grade and see all of the other bloggers who have linked up, too.
Flying into First Grade

Writing Report Cards

Do you ever feel like you might need a copy of this?
Pinned Image
Our school is on a trimester system, so I write report cards three times a year.  When I first started teacher I wrote them all by hand.  I had to painstakingly plan out what I would write first so I wouldn't have to second guess and use gobs of white out.  I am thankful for the computerized version, even when I have to edit and revise to make sure I don't exceed the character limit.
One of the first things I was ever told was to start and end with a positive.  For some students this is a piece of cake.  For others this can provide a creative challenge.  Over the years I have bookmarked and collected pages of resources with ideas for comments to share with families during grading periods.
Since I just finished writing my report cards, I thought this would be a great time to share a great resource with you - just in case you are ever at a loss for words.
Genia Connell wrote a great article for Scholastic last fall (Nov. 2012).  Click the picture to go to the article. 
Image of a piece of paper entitled "101 Report Card Comments"
She includes ideas for each of the following categories:
starting with a positive
personal attributes
 work habits
social skills
setting a goal for a student
closing comments
Here's another from Mrs. Nielson over at Thriving 3rd Graders.  Click the picture to grab the document:
I also found this link to a Teach Net post:
I hope some of these resources help you when you are writing your report cards.  Now that I have finished mine I get to start prepping for conferences.  I hope you have a great week!

Let's Get Acquainted

Latoya Reed from Flying Into First Grade is starting a weekly series of linky parties.  The first one is a let's get acquainted party.  The idea is to share three things you like (or like to do) using your initials.  Here we go:
S is for Soccer
I was an athletic kid.  I grew up swimming, biking, dancing, running, playing basketball, volleyball, track & field, and more!  One sport I never played growing up was soccer.  One year I became friends with the mother of one of my students.  She talked me into joining her soccer team.  I have definitely improved since I first started and enjoy my weekly stress relief with the girls!
M is for Markers
Don't judge - I have a slightly unhealthy obsession with using colorful markers.  I must have all of these markers & pens available and within reach at all times.  I use the highlighters for correcting math journals without bleeding through the pages.  Flair pens work best for correcting work and for checking off work on my clipboard.  Mr. Sketch markers are my go-to for anchor charts because the smell won't give me a headache like other markers.  Sharpies are perfect for labeling everything.
B is for Books
When asked what my favorite genre is, I describe it as tragic fiction.  I love a gripping story about other people's troubles and struggles in life.  It isn't because I enjoy seeing them struggle, but rather it is to see how strong they are in overcoming these challenges.  My favorite author has to be Jodi Picoult.
Those are three things you just learned about me.  Head on over and get to know some of your fellow bloggers :)

Sunday Shout-Outs!

Do you need some new ideas for March? How about a chance to win a $20 gift card to Target? Head on over to Cindy's blog, Granny Goes to School, to start the blog hop. After visiting 10 different blogs, you can enter to win the gift card. Along the way you can collect 10 freebies, too. Just click on the image below:

 You should also pay a visit to Lori's blog, Teaching with Love & Laughter.  She has been blogging for about a year and thought it was time to celebrate.  Her friend Cristin from Cristin's Creations is donating a personalized plaque or clipboard for the winner.  Lori is offering a freebie from her store.  If you haven't seen her store, you should definitely visit.  She is very talented! 

Lying, Hiding, and Stealing, Oh My!!

For the past few nights I have been looking for one of these up high in the sky:
I remember seeing it not too long ago, but somehow after this week I have been expecting that perhaps it lingered longer than usual.  No such luck!

As some of you may remember, my daughter just turned two.  The day after her birthday, she decided she was done with her crib and broke free right after we put her to bed.  The hubs and I went in, calmed her down, and put her back to bed.  Within a minute you could hear the thump, the run to the door, and the shaking of the knob again.  We went in, did a quick 1-min. babyproofing of her room, pulled the mattress out and put it on the floor.  Then we laid her down on her mattress and made a beeline for the door.  After 1 min. of crying, she started talking to her animals and within about 30 min. she was asleep.  Phew!  It took 2 or 3 nights for her to go through this routine, but luckily now she stays in bed and talks herself to sleep like she has been doing for quite sometime (knock-on-wood). 

Now at school, I'm dealing with changes in behavior, too.  My grade level team shares kids for math instruction this year.  Two (yes, TWO) of my little darlings have been asked to return to class to move their behavior clips recently.  When questioned by the other teachers about how disruptive they were while doing this, it had come to my attention that both of these students left their math classrooms, went into hiding for a short period of time, returned to math class and lied to their math teacher about doing so.  I must say, second graders can be sneaky, especially when they think they are avoiding getting into trouble.  Unfortunately, they don't think far enough ahead about the double consequence for lying.

I also had a little girl (not one of the previously mentioned darlings) showing off a ring during music class that my students knew belonged to another student in the class.  When asked if this was true, she practically burst into tears about being falsely accused.  Since I had a class to teach, I stopped by the office on our way back to class.  I asked the office staff if the little girl could empty her pockets in front of them and explained the situtation.  One of the ladies escorted this girl back to class about 5-10 min. later and said she needed to speak with me.  Apparently, her pockets were empty, but she remembered seeing the ring somewhere.  As they asked her to return to class, she discovered the ring on the floor by the office counter.  It just happened to be right where she and I were standing when I asked them if they would be willing to watch her empty her pockets.  Wow - what are the odds? (did you hear the sarcasm oozing out)  She denied, denied, denied taking the ring despite all of the evidence.  It took her a full day to fess up.

On top of all of this, I am trying to get all of my second trimester assessments and data collected.  We have report cards due in about a week and a half and conferences will be held at the end of the month.  I guess when it rains, it pours!!

I'm a Washington Blogger & St. Patrick's Day Freebie


Diane from Fifth in the Middle has a linky going on.  This one can help you find other bloggers in your area.  I know I have seen some great posts from other bloggers who have reached out and met some of the bloggers they have been talking & collaborating with online.  I thought it sounded like fun so I'm definitely linking up.  Who knows, maybe I will get to meet some of the other bloggers in my area :)

Since it is March, it is finally time to upload and share my St. Patrick's Day Freebie.  I have created this word search and hope you like it.  If you choose to download it and like it, I would appreciate you leaving me a little feedback at my store.  Just click on the picture below to download.

Currently, March

I am bummed that I missed the last one, but happy to join in again this month.  It's never too late to join in with Farley for her monthly Currently series :)

Today was all about the little one.  I took a personal day so we could spend the day as a family doing the things my little girl loves most of all.  We took her to an indoor play center.  She was able to run, jump, climb, and play with all kinds of toys that we don't have at home.  Her favorite was probably the slide.  She has been on many slides before, but this one was kind of bumpy and she would just giggle all the way down, and race to see how quickly she could climb the stairs to go again.

 My husband's family is coming to our house tomorrow to help celebrate my daughter's birthday.  A couple of weeks ago she spent a day with her cousins and talked about them for days afterwards.  Even though they live in another state, I'm glad it's only a few hours away so they can still see eachother fairly often.

Like - Love - Hate
I like Spark.  It's a product made by Advocare.  It's a sugar-free drink mix jam-packed with vitamins and nutrients.  It gives me a boost of energy without the side-effects of caffeine.  I've never been a coffee girl unless the word mocha or latte was involved.  I just didn't like the headaches I would get after I would give up the drinks.  This drink gives me the same feeling and I think it's less than 50 calories for an 8-oz. drink!

 AdvoCare Spark® Energy Drink

I love scrapbooking! I was really good at keeping up with it until just after my daughter turned one.  Big shocker...I know (wink, wink).  One of my favorite books I have made is the milestone book I made for her first year.  There is a page for each month of her life.  I also typed up little snippets about what she was eating, how much she was sleeping, what she was interested in, etc.  I also made an A to Z book with one page for each letter.  Like reading, I wish I had more time to complete more books for her.  Here are a couple of pages I have made for her books:
This is the T page in her A to Z book.  It says T is for tiny fingers, tiny toes.  These are all pictures I took of her in the first four months of her life.  I just cropped the photos and edited them to be black and white.  I absolutely love how it turned out!
Here is the cover page I made for her milestone book.  I saw an idea on Pinterest where another scrapbooker used leftover scraps of paper to create a design like this one and knew I had to try it out, too. 

Here is one of her milestone pages.  Forgive the odd white rectangle on the left. That is where I recorded everything I wanted to remember about her 5th month & didn't think you all needed to see/read all of those details so I just covered it.  Every page in the book had this same format (month, milestone data typed up, photo/photos of her during that month).

Finally, I H-A-T-E spiders.  I will not even dignify this hatred with an image for fear I will scare myself and give myself nightmares for days to come.  We just had a rainforest assembly at my school.  The presenters had a tarantula present.  While I found it interesting how they use their hairs as a defense-mechanism, I did not need to see said tarantula in person.  Enough said...moving on!

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