Wednesday, August 29, 2012

happy birthday to the mr.

well the husband turned 31 today
and unfortunately he has to work late
so we will be celebrating this weekend
and instead I'm spending the evening with this little one
and yes, Luna is in E's crib
and no she shouldn't be
and yes I probably should be getting her out ASAP and not taking pictures
but she is SO cute, I just couldn't help myself
and the funniest part is she completely ignored the crib for months
still wasn't having it when the mattress was put in
but as soon as we put these cute little sheets on
she found her way in very fast
so we will keep working on it
and no, she is not in there right now, but being a good girl and sitting with me
on the sofa, just like a good fur baby should

Monday, August 27, 2012

expectations for art in the classroom

last year I realized that art in the classroom was kind of my thing
and when it came to teaching nothing but history
I realized how crucial these projects were going to be for our success
however, I know that doing a lot of art in the classroom is not always easy
 for teachers to begin
and one of the biggest complaints I hear from colleagues is that they hate doing art
because the projects never turn out how they want
so I've decided to share a few things I do, or expect, from my students 
when it comes to each and every project

so here they are - expectations presented to my students for each and every
art project we complete in class
and a few helpful hints to make art projects a happy experience for all

#1 a pencil plan [just pencil on final paper]
 must be complete before ANY art mediums are used
#2 no pencil is showing on final projects
#3 always give students a number of art mediums you expect them to use on the project
I start out with 2 different mediums and then move up from there as the year goes on
#4 NO highlighters may be used on final art pieces
#5 markers are for outlining, not coloring in large spaces
#6 suggest which coloring supplies are going to work for parts of the project
[small pieces need color pencils, not crayons, etc.]
#7 colored chalk can be your very best friend, and the kids love it because they can add SO much color to their piece in very little time, and you will love it because it looks awesome
just make sure to remind students to use the chalk on the side and don't be afraid to get their finger tips dirty from blending!
#8 ALWAYS show examples of finished projects - this may be hard because many times that means you the teacher have to take the time to make the example yourself, but it is SO worth it
#9 ALWAYS give students the grading rubric at the start of the project
I create my own rubrics for each project but it works pretty much like a check-list for students to remember the details for that particular project
 like how many symbols they need to use, how many art mediums, etc.
and when they see that they are actually given points on the project just for "neatness" it seems to help them slow down while working

and last but surely not least

monitoring while students are working on their art is crucial
find something, anything, that can be complimented
I know this seems obvious, but I'm telling you, it is the true key to success
you can see the kid literally light up as you find something special in their piece
and confidence with art will take them so far

want proof?
well here are some pictures from the very first art project I have done with my 
6th grade students this year:
all my history students completed this mandala project on the topic
"what makes history?"
just let me know if you are interested in seeing the worksheet I created to help them begin this project
and the best part, I already had some examples from last year 
when my 8th graders made mandalas for our unit on slavery

well there you go, hope this helps
sorry, it turned out to be a little wordier than I was hoping
also, thanks to meg from oh happy day for suggesting I write this post!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

green new dots

if I had to stop collecting pyrex today, I officially could do it
[wouldn't want to, but I could]
because the ONE piece I've been desiring
drooling over
and so on
is finally mine
thanks to the mr. who knows exactly what this birthday girl wanted
the green new dots bowl has found a home with me
 and yes, I could have taken a thousand photos of this set
sharing only three was challenging!

Thursday, August 23, 2012


today I turned twenty-eight
it has been a bit of a funky birthday
I think things have just been different this year
I'm still trying to get into my new school
get back into teaching more than one subject at a time with a group of kids
and due to some complicated circumstances
this will be the first year in my 28 that I do not get to have
the family birthday party that I have had every year leading up to this
and to be honest, it is bugging me a bit
maybe because this is my last birthday before E arrives
and I just wanted to do my "normal" party
but I'm not sure
with all that being said I enjoyed my birthday dinner
and my favorite type of presents
vintage & things for E, with a few goodies for me as well
now as many of you may know that pyrex is one of my favorite things
and the husband sure knew just the piece that I needed
in fact, I told him that having this piece by the time I was 30 was a goal
and he made sure that it happened a few years early!
can't wait to do some re-organizing tomorrow
because now, my new dots set is complete
and I think it needs to be featured front & center with the rest of the beauties

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

simple summer sorbet sweet treat

yup, that's what I'm calling this pie
and the good news is
it is much easier to make then to say the whole name I just came up with
right before school started the mr. & I were able to have a little b.b.q
with some great friends
and I snagged this recipe for the amazing dessert we had that night

all you need are 3 ingredients [my kind of recipe]
1. your favorite sorbet flavor - I went with raspberry, the original flavor we tasted
2. cool whip
3. pie crust - I love chocolate & fruit together, so I opted for the Oreo crust, but graham cracker crust would work too
and that's it
putting it together is just as simple
1. soften the frozen goods
2. scoop sorbet into crust and then smooth
3. top with cool whip and return to freezer to firm
thanks Hailee for making this for us, we loved it
and I'm loving the one I have waiting for me in the freezer right now

Sunday, August 19, 2012

time to get crafty

so I've decided that Pinterest is the best & worst thing to happen when party planning
there are so many amazing ideas out there
and it is all about figuring out which ones to tackle
so today jessica and I started some projects for the upcoming baby shower
we made some streamers to hang around the tables
and they were super easy and we LOVE how they turned out
and because they are too cute to put away in a drawer for the next month
I decided to hang them in the windows behind E's crib until the shower
(with a little help from Jessica's height)
now I can't wait to keep getting crafty
and see how everything comes together

Friday, August 17, 2012

27 weeks

this week was a busy week for me and baby
putting the final touches on my classroom and starting the first days of school
but all in all, we handled the heat wave and the hours of work like champs
little E is moving so much these days
especially at night when the mr. and I are taking it easy on the sofa
she really likes feeling like she is part of the action by making sure we don't forget
that she is also there
this week I also made a very exciting purchase
my first maternity jeans, and man, are they a bit of heaven
I think that even after the little lady is born I am going to have a hard time giving them up
and on another note, I think stripes should be a staple in every pregnant lady's closet
I am absolutely in love with them
happy friday, and tomorrow we are getting to have a visit from some great friends
that we do not get the chance to see enough
yeah for weekends with friends, and a high temperature finally not in the 100's
oh, and goodbye to my second trimester, third trimester here we come!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

and so year 6 began today

well another first day of school is in the books
and all in all I would say it was a success
I think the funniest part for me going from 8th grade back down to 6th
and how little these guys seemed to me
I remember back in the day when I taught 6th grade the kids seemed so grown up
but, with that being said I was coming off of teaching kindergarten 
so just about anyone seemed giant
today I started off with the best way I know how to start the year off
talking about myself
I do this through a little True/False quiz with random facts about me
(and hearing their reasoning for their answers was pretty impressive)
as well as a "grab bag" of items that are special or personal to me
it seems key for me to have my kids quickly realize I am not a robot
and that they just might actually have something in common with me
whether it be sports, my love of harry potter, or maybe even being left-handed
so today was mostly about me
and tomorrow will mostly be about them
and then onto some "real" routines on monday
and yes, I am loving having school start on a Thursday
that was a change this year, and I hope we keep it around

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

there probably are a million other things I could have spent time on

but oh well, I wanted to get crafty yesterday, and that's just what I did
not to mention I have ample wall space in my new classroom
so I figured a little canvas art would be fun
I had a ton of crayons left over from when I did this project with some previous students
and I couldn't wait to try the crayon melting with all the colors of the rainbow
now it is time for me to get back to work
the classroom is almost put together, and I have gotten started on 
back to school projects for my newest bunch of students
this year I will be teaching 6th grade English and History
with one period of 7th grade History
so yes, if you have been keeping track,
I now can say I have officially taught every grade, kindergarten through 8th grade
I think I want a shirt that says that!!!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

ten on ten [august]

yesterday was ten on ten
and it was a jam-packed day
including a very fitting ten on ten event:
my ten year high school reunion
so between setting up for the reunion
working in my classroom
and then actually attending the reunion
it was a great day, so here it was
it was great getting to see everyone last night at the reunion
and overall, I think it was a success
and yes, "2002 - better than you" was our motto
well, it rhymed, and we were never a very spirited class, so it just kind of ironically stuck

happy ten on ten!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

26 weeks

last weekend we got to take our weekly bump photo while in santa cruz
and for the record, today I was told for the very first time this pregnancy
how small I look for 6 months!!!
 and beyond the awesomeness of the compliment
the very best part was who that compliment came from -
the secretary from the middle school I was hired back to last night!
it sure felt great waking up this morning for the first time since last march
when I received my first pink slip for this coming school year
actually knowing where I was going to be working for the 2012/2013 school year
tomorrow I'll fill you in on the details for my new job
but overall, I am so ecstatic and thankful for a great placement
and with baby on the way in a few months
things could have been pretty scary, but they are not
yeah for good news

Monday, August 6, 2012

a wedding by the boardwalk

on saturday our friends tied the knot in santa cruz, california
and at one point in the evening I did describe myself as 
a kid in a candy shop
here are just a few reasons why

Sunday, August 5, 2012

and then they were mr. & mrs.

yesterday the mr. and I got to be a part of our friend's beautiful wedding
I had an amazing time catching some of the amazing details
the bride worked so hard to have come together
for tonight I will just leave you with this little peak
tomorrow I look forward to go through the rest of the images from the day
it really was the perfect end to a perfect vacation
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