Friday, March 30, 2012

Thank Heaven For The Jonathans and Charlottes in the World

This is a must watch video clip....Thank Heavens for the Jonathans and Charlottes in the world...we all have them in our classrooms, and I hope we are all blessed with friends in our own personal lives like these two brave young people. 
Here's to the underdog in all of us!

I am so thankful for your bloggy friendships and for this community of absolutely incredibly talented teachers who support and cheer each other on.

Love and hugs,

Thursday, March 29, 2012

All's Well That Ends Well!

I'm not on Spring Break, but I think I need one. my British friends would say.

Did I tell you that I had one of my tires stolen off my car the other day? 

And I woke up this afternoon to find that I had all FOUR tires stolen, including the new one I had just put on there?

I didn't notice they were even missing until I started driving down the road and I couldn't steer right.  I pulled the car over, parked it and walked back to my townhouse (didn't want to bend the rims).

There in my front yard was this strange looking huge yellow bird. It  looked like a big fat yellow Garfield the cat, all puffed up with his hair sticking straight out. 

I looked at him trying to figure out what exactly he was doing because he was making this growling noise and was trying to flap what looked like little wings and take flight. Then suddenly another puffer-fluffer cat came flying out of nowhere and nosed dived into me. 

And there was a hammer missing in my house. And more flying cats. So I called my brother in tears and he came over and told me I had to file a report with the police about the missing tires. 

But, he said to wait until tomorrow because he didn't have time today. 

I was like "How am I going to get to work tomorrow???" 

The panic set in so fast.

I know this kind of feels so familiar...

Slowly reality came back into focus. 

I am in my bed. There is banging going on on my roof from the roofers up there. 

Kids are playing out my window. "What day is it?" 

Look at the clock. 

5:00 p.m. Sun is up. 

Ahhh...Valium! MRI!! It all came back so clearly to me, in a drug-induced-kind-of-way. 

It was just a dream. I checked. 

The car is still parked outside, all four tires still there. Never had a tire stolen off my car....yet.  Dream.

Today I got the day off!! Yeah!! Not.

I had to get a nerve test on my left arm and an MRI. 

If you have to take a day off from work, ya don't want to spend it the way I did. It was such a beautiful warm Spring day! The birds were chirping, the sun was shining....and I had to get electric shocks sent up my arms.

I went to the doctor because I have had "pins and needles" and numbness and some pain in my left hand and arm. It already hurts like a Mother, hence the doctor's appointments.

Add a little electric shock to that mix and yum! 

I'm a fainter. I faint at the dentist EVERY SINGLE TIME I go. (But that's another story for another day.)

They tell you when they are hooking you up to this electric shock thingy that tests your nerves to see if there is any damage that it might hurt just a little. Holy Hannah!! 

When I say this was a form of torture, I'm not kidding. The shocks hurt so badly. My arm and hand were twitching and jumping with each burst of electricity. I got so light headed.

"This isn't good."

"Shazam, I'm going down...I'm going down..." 

And then it was over. No fainting! I did it!!

Time to switch the tester thingy around and do it two more times. 
(once more on my bad arm and once on my good one, to have something to compare it to.)  

I am not a mental whimp. 


I started to get really light headed and woozy again. Right when I thought I was going to pass out, the test was over!  

I'm so tough!!! I flew through it with shining stars!! My students would have clapped for my bravery!!

Then it was time for my MRI. Sounds serious. I don't think it is. I think I have a pinched nerve in my neck. 

I was in a car accident 20 something years ago and got a neck injury then. They tell me now, that I have a neck of a 80 year old! Something to be proud of! 

I have degenerative disc disease in my upper vertibrae in my neck. The last four months I've slowly been losing strength in my left arm and the pain has been bad enough to cause me not to sleep. I'm in my 40s and growing old by the minute. Sad.

I had an MRI three years ago when I was having fainting spells. They never did figure out what was causing them. 

Last time I had an MRI it took over 3 hours. They let my friend stand in the corner of the room and crack jokes and sing to me to get me through it. It wasn't pretty. 

This time I was prepared! I told the doctor, the nurse, the MRI people who scheduled my appointment to put me out. I am extremely claustrophobic and there was no way in $#*$ I was going to go through another MRI without being put out.

No prob. Went to the MRI place. Got in the cute little scrubs they give you to wear. (Why don't we get to wear scrubs to work?) Got my vitals checked.

And they hand me a Valium. Blank stare.

I just got done telling them my song and dance about how the last MRI took over three hours because I kept hitting the panic button and they hand me ONE valium??

That's what they gave me last time. 

Where's the anesthetic?!! Why did I come here early to be put out??

"The valium is how we put you out. We don't put you under. To do that you have to go to the other hospital."

Panic starts to creep up my throat. What in the world?? How did I get into this mess?? This isn't happening. 

I tried to be brave. I really really did. I thought of my first graders and how they would not want a teacher that is a wimp. I climbed up there on the MRI table, got the strappy thinging put on over my neck...and NOPE. 


They took the strappy thingy off my neck, covered me with a warm blanket, (they were soooo sweet! Did I mention that the MRI guy was stinking handsome?? Holy muscles. Holy hottness. (Holy wedding ring on his finger. Bummer.) "Never mind the ring for right now! I can do this! I can do this for HIM!!")

Ok, I am ready. Deep breaths. Here we go. 

Under the MRI. 

Keeping eyes closed. 

So far so good.

Machine starting up.

"Five minutes must have passed by now! I'm doing so good!"

Panic rising. I start thinking about the guy in MRI students at school thinking how brave I am...anything. 

More panic. 

I open my eyes. AAARRZGH!!! Bad!! BAD! BAD!!! The MRI machine is two inches above my nose. No air. Can't breathe. Can't see anything. 

"I'm being buried alive!!" PANIC BUTTON!!! Holy bleep, bleep, bleep!! 

Where are they??? Why aren't they coming to get me?? 

Squeezing panic button furiously and crying for help!!! 

There he MRI guy is there...he's telling me I'm ok....he's slowly pulling me out of the machine. 

I sit up. Then, tears....more tears..."Stop crying!! Don't let hotty MRI guy see you cry!!!" 

Mr. Hotty MRI guy tells me how brave I have been for the ONE MINUTE I was under there. 

What the freak?? One minute?? Seriously??

More tears. 

I go back out of the room. They give me another valium. My friend Pam is called back to sit with me. 

I cry on Pam's shoulder. 

I am a wimp. Plain and simple. 

We sit. We sit some more. More people come in to get MRIs. I have to do this. I have to do this now.

I will save you the long version of the rest of the story... Mr. Hotty MRI guy took off all the cushions, pads, mattresses, whatever was on there, and got me lowered another 3 inches! He brought me a fresh warm blanket, helped me lay down, and even pulled the hair away from my face as I laid down. 

"Sigh...Mr. Hotty is so dreamy...." Valium starting to work.

"I can do this for Mr. Hotty...." Getting drowsy. In the machine I go. I can't move my head, but I can move my eyes and see the sides of the room. I'm at least 5 inches below the MRI machine. I see four screws in the ceiling of the machine.....

Next thing I know, Mr. Hotty and his assistant are back in the room. They are saying something about how amazingly brave I was! I did it!!! I did it!!! 30 WHOLE MINUTES!!! I DID IT!!!

I was so proud of myself! Now I can face my students in the morning and tell them I overcame one of my worst fears! All by myself!! 

I came home and fell into a deep Valium-induced sleep....and had some very crazy dreams....

But, as my Dad used to say, "All's well that ends well!"

Hugs and loads of Loves! It's almost FRIDAY!!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Library Linky Party and Organization Linky Party!

Many, many thanks to Holly from Crisscross Applesauce for the fabulous prize of having Kristin from A Teeny Tiny Teacher guest blog over here yesterday! If you didn't catch Kristin's hilarious post, you can read it by following this link. And welcome to all of my new followers that joined our ranks yesterday from Kristin's blog! I'm so excited you are here! =)
I'm joining in the linky fun today! Amy, over at Literacy and Laughter, had the fabulous idea to share photos of your classroom library! My library needs a little organization at the moment, but I snapped a few photos to show you!

I have a "cabin" theme to my library. One year, the custodian came to me and said he found an old platform in storage and would I like it? I decided it would make the cutest little platform for a porch! With his help, I screwed pieces of wooden fencing to 2 X 4s and then screwed the 2 X 4s into the drywall. Then, I cut down some branches of my friend's tree and made a trellis and hung it from the ceiling....18 inches from the ceiling, Mr. Fire Marshall. I have little twinkle lights woven through the trellis which makes for a cozy feeling.

The main classroom rule that I have is "There is Only Love" and I found the cutest heart-shaped pillows at Target, so they are in there. I know, I know, this is a post about my library, and I should be focussed more on my book baskets, but if you've seen one book basket, ya have seen them all, right? ;)

I wanted to share with you how I store my white boards and erasers, too! For years, I just had a basket of dry erase markers and we used tissue, paper towels, etc. to wipe them off. Yah, not too economical! I finally went to Walmart and bought some cheap socks, and now I store a marker in each sock, and use they use the sock to erase. I know, I know....I'm a little late to the sock party! I should have done this years ago!! So much easier to have everything organized this way!

Do you have any awesome organization tricks that you use in your classroom? I seriously am the worlds worst organizer!! I'd love to hear about ANY of your ideas! Seriously! Link up below!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

A Teeny Tiny Teacher Guest Bloggy Treat!!

A Teeny Tiny Teacher

Hey peeps!  It's Kristin from A Teeny Tiny Teacher.  I'm a guest over here on Rebecca's blog because she won this in a giveaway.  Huh?  I know.  But it's true.  Instead of buying a gift card for her, I am just going to write one of my normal posts over here.  I feel like I'm getting away with something.  (Dave Ramsey would be proud.)  By the way, I love Rebecca and I feel quite comfy over here.  I may stay awhile. 

Yesterday, I wrote all about how I'm using Angry Birds as a management tool in my classroom.  And I mentioned that one of our class rewards was that I let the kids sit wherever they wanted to on the carpet.  ALL DAY.  That was HUGE.  I don't think I could have offered this to my class last year.  Not without running the risk of ending up in a mental institution. 

But my class earned it.  And they're sweet.  And I don't have anyone throwing chairs or dirt or rocks this year so I was pretty sure we could do it. 

(Do you have assigned seating on the carpet?  I just can't help it.  I need my struggling kids up front.  I have to have my wiggle worms close enough so that I can bop tap them on the head.  I need to separate the talkers.  I prefer to have the ones who come back from lunch with tummy trouble as far away from me as possible.  And my little high achievers can sit in the back.  I do switch kids when necessary, but for the most part, my kids have an assigned spot on the carpet.  Also in our lines.  But we won't go into that.) 

 When I announced that they were going to get to sit wherever they wanted to on the carpet, mass pandemonium broke out.  A cannon could have gone off in the room and we would have had no clue.

I told them once they picked a spot, they had to stay there for the whole day.  No new spots each time we came to the carpet. 

One of my little sweeties chose front and center.  Right in front of my legs.  He is ADORABLE.  I have him on the back row because I don't have to worry about him at all.  He listens.  He understands.  He follows directions.  He will do no wrong.  When he chose front and center, I felt really bad.  I wonder how long he's been wishing he could sit up front????  Awwwww. 

So . . . inevitably, all of my must-sit-on-the-front-row-so-that-I-can-tap-them-and-refocus-them-every-twenty-seconds kids went directly to the back row and sat down.  Of course.  No surprise there. 

The rest of the kids filled in and I got ready to teach a fun and engaging Houghton Mifflin lesson.  Everything to the core, you know. 

The Angry Birds Were In Effect. 

Right in the middle of my lesson, one of my squirmers (now on the very back row) raised his hand.  We'll call him Squirmer since I can't use his real name.  I'm pretty sure it's his real middle name so I hope I don't get into trouble. 

I called on him.  (WHY?  WHY?  I hadn't asked a question.  WHY?  I hit myself in the head.) 

Squirmer said, "I don't know how to say this." 

I did everything in my power not to roll my eyes. 

"What's up?" I asked. 

"Well, " Squirmer said, "She's not biting me . . . " 

I shook my head a little.  Tilted it.  Scrunched my eyes.  "What?" 

"She's not biting me . . . " he repeated. 

"Who?"  I ask.  "What?"  (Maybe I was teaching a lesson on Question Words and just didn't know it.) 

"Pippi," he replied.  "She's not exactly biting me . . . I don't know how to say it. "  He gestured with his hands as if he kept coming up empty.  He didn't know how to say it.  Gesture, gesture. 

We'll call said student Pippi because that's exactly who she is.  Imagine Pippi Longstocking and you've got her.  She's in my class this year.  She's everything you would imagine her to be. 

"Well, if she's not biting you, what's the trouble?" I asked.  Now I have my hand on a magnet because it's time to take one down.  Obviously.  I mean, this is a big time interruption that has nothing at all to do with the Core Curriculum of The Day. 

"She's not biting me . . . but she keeps putting her teeth on my knee," Squirmer said. 

 I blinked.  A few times. 

"Pippi's putting her teeth on your knee?" I asked. 

"Yes," Squirmer said. 

"Pippi?  Is this true?"  I asked. 

 Pippi (with her thumb in her mouth) nodded.  Sad face.  Nod. 

"Do your teeth hurt?" I asked. 

 Pippi (with her thumb in her mouth) nodded again.  Slowly.  Sadder face.  Nod . . . nod. 

"Do your teeth feel better when they're on Squirmer's knee?" I asked.  (Seriously.  This wasn't in the curriculum.  I checked.) 

Pippi (thumb STILL IN MOUTH) nodded again.  Slower.  Even sadder face.  Nod . . . nod . . . nod. 

"Okay, then."  Deep breath.  THINK.  THINK!   "Pippi, go get a kleenex and hold it against your teeth.  Squirmer, scoot way over . . . Farther.  A little more.  There.  Stay." 

 To Pippi, "If your teeth hurt, use your own knee, okay?" 

Since then, I have a wide variety of chew toys available in my classroom now.  It appears as if our pencils are the most popular.  Bookmarks are a close second. 

That was only for one day.  Now my kids are all back in their normal spots.  This way, I can keep a close eye on Pippi's chewing habits.  Wouldn't want anything to happen to my shoes . . .


Thank you soooo much to Kristin, from A Teeny Tiny Teacher, for my guest blogging over here today!! What a fabulous gift!! Whoo hoo!! I love you, girl!! 
Hugs and love,

Monday, March 26, 2012

Wind, Blow Me Away!

I don't know about your school, but in my school we have the radio on in the hallway all day long. It's kinda nice...ya never know what tune you'll be bopping to down the hallway...kind of good for keeping the morale up...kind of not-so-good when it's a song all the kids know and they start singing to it when it is supposed to be "The Quiet Zone."

Like I said, I like it, for the most part. Except lately it is always tuned to this station that plays songs from the 80's...(Do I dare admit how old I was in the 80s???) I like the 80's but every now and then I get this flashback to some Junior High dance, or an old boyfriend from long ago in my past that I'd rather stay the past!

Anyway, we were walking down the hall to P.E. today...(by the way, whose idea was it to put First Grade the furthest from the gym and lunchroom?? It is a good little jaunt for my little students and their short little legs....)And, this song came on the radio and I can't get it out of my head! (Love that...not.)

All day, I kept catching myself singing "We can dance if we want to....Do the safety la la la....We can dance! We can dance! Everybody's doing the dance!" The problem with getting a song stuck in my head is that I usually only remember the one or two lines of the song and the rest is gone. Ugh... "We can dance....we can dance...everybody's doing the dance." Yah, that was my Monday.

Other than that, today was a pretty uneventful Monday....Except that I woke up late...and it was super dark and cloudy... and I thought maybe my clock was wrong and it was still like 5 a.m. or something...and maybe, just maybe, I had another hour to sleep...but it wasn't. It was 7:30. I checked. Twice.

And the wind was gusting like CRAZY!  I actually felt my poor little townhouse SHAKING in the wind!! Seriously!! (When Utah gets our long overdue earthquake one of these days, I'm sure gonna feel safe in my place! HA!!)

So, anyway, back to the wind....I have two little dogs and I always put out them out in the back "yard" before going to work. (You know how townhouse yards are...My yard is a slab of concrete with flowerbeds around the edges. Nice yard.) 

I opened the back door to let one of them out, my little Yorkie, Bella Roo (a.k.a. The Princess) would NOT go out in that wind. I was nudging her out the back door when I realized that the back gate had swung wide open....and out ran my other dog, Kai. 

Noooo!!! I was running late, I hadn't showered or gotten dressed yet, and there he bolts out the gate and around the neighborhood!! Aaarrghhh!! I threw on a sweatshirt, grabbed Bella Roo, and ran out in my pjs, wind whipping my hair in my eyes and mouth, yelling for my dog to come back. 

Lovely. I looked like a mad woman out there running around. I'm surprised my dog didn't take flight.  Seriously, this wind was blowing the garbage cans all over the streets (great day for garbage day, so much for that recycling!) 

The wind was so bad, on the way to work I saw a port-a-potty blown over near the construction site by the freeway! (I hope no one was in there...eeeew!!)

Anyway, it all has a happy dog ran back to me, I got ready for work (minus the shower) and got there in time! (Yeah for no bus duty this week!!) And to top off everything, my little peeps were angels today! Whoo hooo!! 

Love and Hugs, 

P.S. I decided to start reading "The Wizard of Oz" to my class today due to the wind! What a great read!

Did I tell you that I am SOOOOOO EXCITED for Kristin from A Teeny Tiny Teacher to guest blog this week??!!! Now, she can spin a story like no other! Stay tuned!!

Friday, March 23, 2012

YAHOOO!!! and a Letter of Encouragement

Yeah!! It is Friday!! This year is starting to pick up speed...I can't believe that April is almost here and that means Spring Break, testing, and then summer vacation!!! This week the snow melted and it warmed up into the 70s! I had bus duty this week and I didn't even need to wear a coat! Whoo Hoo!! I hope this means a warm April and May, but in Utah, we always seem to get a freak snow storm in those months.

And, YAHOOOO HOLY MOLY FLIP FLOPS!!!! I cannot believe this, but I WON 1st PLACE over at Holly's giveaway at Criss Cross Applesauce yesterday!! Did you see her mega-give away celebrating her new blog look??!!  I just LOVE Holly! I've been a devoted follower of hers since she first started blogging. In fact, she told me I was her very first follower!!! That makes winning her give away that much sweeter!!

As part of winning  first place, guess who is going to be a guest blogger over here on my little bitty blog?? KRISTIN FROM A TEENY TINY TEACHER!! I am sooooo excited!!! Who doesn't just die laughing at Kristin's blog posts?? She seriously needs to write a book! (P.S. She has the cutest writing paper freebie over there right now! Go check it out!) I feel sooo blessed to have won all the FABULOUS prizes from her giveaway....I'm seriously still in shock!! Thank you soooo much, Holly!!

And now, I flip to a more serious topic....This time of year is almost always high stress for teachers everywhere....The pressures of end of level testing, the crazy behavior in our students that starts to come out with the change of the weather, the moodiness of coworkers who haven't seen the sun since last October....all of this and more can take a toll on the most veteran teacher.

I received an email a little while back, I think back in February, from another teacher....and it couldn't have come at a better time for me. February was a tough month for me at work, and this letter warmed my heart and made me focus on the reasons why we all go into touch the hearts of our little ones. So, even though Teacher Appreciation Week isn't until May, I just wanted you to know, I appreciate YOU! And if things are tough right now, hang on, "This, too, shall pass."
Hugs and Love,

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Join The Mega Giveaways, Freebies, and Linky Parties Galore Link Up!

To celebrate 400 followers on my blog (YEAH!!) I wanted to pay it forward! I am so grateful for all of the wonderful teachers out there who share their ideas and inspire me to be better. I love the little side-stories that are posted that make me laugh out loud or nod my head in agreement. Thank you for following my little blog, supporting my giveaways and cheering me on!

To pay it forward and to give a huge "Thank You", if you have a freebie, a linky party going on or a giveaway, please add your link to my "Giveaways, Freebies, and Linky Parties Galore" Linky Party below! I can't wait to see what everyone is sharing!

Hugs and loads of Love,

TBA's Ultimate Linky Party

Friday, March 16, 2012

St. Patrick's Day Blog Hunt and TpT Sale!

Top of the evenin' to you, visitors!! It is day number 16 of our St Patrick's Day Blog Hunt and I hope you've been finding some fabulous treasures along your way! If you missed the other blog hunt days, it started at Mrs. Jump's blog. You can go there and follow it all the way through! You can also check out the other days on Pinterest by clicking here.

I have a special little ditty for you for stopping by today! This is from my St. Patty's Day Centers for Math and Language Arts Unit.  Just click on the image below to download it! If you like what you see, I'd love you to leave a comment below! Oh! And all my "Spring-like" units are 20% off at my TpT store until Sunday! (This includes the following: Plant and Flower Packet, Lamb and Lion Calendar Pieces, St. Patty's Day Centers, and Lady Bug Tally Mark cards.)

Debbie Clement, over at Rainbows Within Reach, is also giving away a freebie today, too! Click on the number 16 below to go grab her cute idea!

And don't forget to celebrate the last day of the St. Patrick's Day Blog Hunt tomorrow by visiting
Crystal Radke over at Kreative in Kinder! Just click on the number 17 below to visit her!

Thanks so much for stopping by!
There is only Love,

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Solving the World's Problems and a Writing Freebie!

Wow....Lately I just haven't had much to say on my brain has just been drawing a blank...but I think today's post is so long that you're going to fall asleep on me half-way through! So, here's me last night...I went to bed at 8:30 after an exhausting day at work, and feeling like I was coming down with yet another, sniff, sniff, sinus infection...Hate those!! My neck was aching and I was feeling feverish, so I took a hot bath and crawled into bed after downing a Musinex D.

Yah, big mistake....whatever was in that medicine kept me awake, yet groggy, all freakin' night long!! I can't tell you how many times I looked over at the clock and hardly any time had was a loooong night. But, I had a lot of thinking time on my hands and I swear, I think I solved almost all the world's problems in my head last night!

At least the problems in my world...Ha! Ok, maybe one or two problems I've been having, at work. With two of my students. And their behavior. Which has had me so perplexed. So, I came up with two new plans in the middle of the night and they WORKED today!!

Ok, they worked for one of them....The other ended up getting suspended just before lunch...Yah, sad. But lets not focus on that! The thing is, my plans did work for one of them and for a shorter time for the other!! PROGRESS!!

So, here's the situation... I have two beautiful kids that play off each other (things like, one will make a noise and the other will roll on the floor laughing hysterically unable to get calmed down again....during  whole group instruction....or being aggressive with the other children...unable to sit still...etc.) Boy have they been having a hard time the past two days. (I thought the full moon was last week!)

But here's the thing, both of them are high-functioning autistic children and it has been so interesting learning how to help them. They both get over-stimulated very easily, and distracted very easily. In my room we have tables, so to sit with a group of four or five children can be very overwhelming.

I moved some things around this morning and made little nooks with a desk for each of them and it has helped them so much. They are "contained" in their own little safe place.  They both seem to love having their own little space and have stayed much more focussed. (My horseshoe table sits between the two of them so I can keep an eye on them.)

My mom was telling me last night about weighted vests that you can get/or make that sometimes help autistic children. I spoke with our Special Programs lead coordinator today and she is going to see if the district has some. I'm really excited to see if the two children in my class respond well to them. I am so fascinated by autism and I really want to learn more about it so I can help my students be successful.

I also made a behavior chart for them. We wrote down four behavior goals and before each transition I ask them if they can do each of the four items. I wait for them to respond yes or no. Then after 30 minutes or at the end of the activity, I ask them if they did the four things. If they did, they get a sticker, if not, no sticker. It gets pretty quick after the first couple of times.  I want them to be successful, so I give them a reward from the treat box if they reach their goal in the morning, and then we start over in the afternoon and if they make their goal in the afternoon they get ten minutes of game time with another friend in the classroom (I'm trying to help them with positive social interaction.) It worked so well today, especially with one of them! I called his mom at noon to tell her about the success her child was having and about the new behavior plan and she was so excited that she said she would follow up at home with a reward. He ended up making both of his goals today and he was so proud when I walked him out to his mother's car after school to tell her the good news! He was just beaming! And here's the clencher....

He said to me "Miss Sutton, do we get to do this again tomorrow!?" Whooo hooo!! When I told him yes, we'd do it every day, he just couldn't believe it! He was so excited! I'm posting the behavior grid I made for them below....It's nothing fancy, but it will give ya an idea of how I set it up. Oh, and if they didn't get a sticker, I wrote down in the box what behavior they were doing so their parents could see it when they brought it home. (BTW, we get out of school at 3:20, so the 10 minute reward time is during that time...the last box on the chart.)

On another note, we have been writing and writing and writing in my classroom! I keep meaning to share the template I made for my students to write informational texts. You can also adapt this for a personal narrative. They have this pattern down so well now that they can write without the graphic organizer or the words written on their paper for them. I hope you enjoy!

Oh, and please stop by again tomorrow for another FREEBIE!!! I am participating in the St. Patrick's Day giveaway and will be posting a fun activity for you!

Thanks so much to everyone who gave me your blog addresses on yesterday's post! I added as many as I could and then Blogger suddenly wouldn't let me add any more...Soooooooooo, I am still in the process of either starting a second blog list or trying a different web browser to see if that makes any difference. But, if I haven't gotten your blog posted yet, I will! =) I just have to figure this whole blogging thing out!

I also lost my numbering on my comments when I changed up my blog look. I've tried and tried to add the code to HTML but so far no luck in getting it to work! Ugh! So frustrating!! Has anyone else had this same issue? I'd love some help if you know how to fix this. ;)

Sending you Love and Hugs,

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

I need your help!

Oh no!! I just noticed that when I changed up my blog last week , I lost all my New Blogs on the Block links and all my favorite blog links!! This can't be!! So, I need your help!! Please leave me a comment below if you are a Newbie Blogger or if you follow my blog, along with YOUR name of your blog and a link to it! I am going to start rebuilding my blog lists again!

Thank you soo much for your help!!

Is it only Tuesday???

Hugs and Love,

P.S. I have to update this!! Thank you so much for letting me know that my blog list was still there hidden from me! I just went to blogs I follow on my layout page, clicked on Add and then selected the button that says blogs I follow! I am slowly adding them back on!!Yeah!!! If you don't see your blog on there, please let me know! I love keeping up with everyone!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Thank you for the Award and St. Patty's Day

I want to thank Chrissy at First Grade Found Me and Kaleigh at Kaleigh's Klassroom for the Top 10 Award! That means so much to me and I really appreciate it! I am so swamped at work that I am going to have to pass on doing all the requirements for the award. But, if you haven't checked out Chrissy and Kaleigh's fabulous blogs please do!

I managed to get a St. Patty's Day packet together this weekend just in time for this week! It's over 50 pages of fun! I hope you'll check it out at my TpT store. I am working on getting my Teacher's Notebook store updated and running for those of you who prefer TN! ;)

I hope you're having a great start to a new week!
Hugs and Love,

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Teachers Taking Care of Teachers

Dear sweet  Crystal over at Kreative in Kinder is heading up a wonderful idea. She is rounding up teachers to help send materials or TpT items to those teachers in the midwest who lost everything in the recent tornadoes. We all invest thousands of dollars into our classrooms every year and I just can't image losing everything. So, please join us in helping these teachers who aren't just in need of materials, but they are in need of our support and love. And as Crystal said on her blog, that is what we do best as teachers!
Please go to Crystal's blog and link up or email her at and she will hook you up with a teacher in need.

More tomorrow!
Hugs and Love,

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Give Away Winners!!!

It has been a CRAZY hectic week for me!! I had three meetings with parents before and after school this week, and my internet has been down most of the week at home, so I've had to stay late at work just to get things done. But enough about me!

On to the winners!! CONGRATULATIONS to Rachel, Heidi V., and Meredith Gilbert on winning! (Please email me your email addresses at and I will send out your packets!)

More to come tomorrow...if I have internet! ;) 

Happy Saturday!
There is only Love,

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Spring Giveaway and New Blog Look!!

(This is just a sample.)

Hi Everyone! I hope your week is going great! I had the stomach "crud" yesterday but couldn't find a sub, so I pushed through the day! That made for a very LONG Monday!! I can't believe is only Tuesday! The weekend seems light years away! But, good news!! I've been working on some more packets for you!! This weekend I finished my Lamb and Lion Calendar and Graphing, and I finished my Plants and Flowers packet! I am super excited to share them with you!! So much so, that I am going to give these two packets away to THREE lucky winners!

To enter:
1. Follow my blog and leave a comment.
2. Follow me on TpT and leave a comment.
3. Let me know what you think of my new blog look!

* BONUS ENTRY: I hate asking people to post about my giveaway on their blog, but if you do, please enter a comment below along with the link to your blog! That way, you get some advertising for your blog, too! ;)

That makes a four separate chances for you to win!! I will select the winner and post it on Satuday! I sure hope you'll join in the fun!

And on an even more exciting note, I decided to change up the look of my blog to something a bit more "Springy"! I love Alicia's work over at Dream Like Magic and she got my blog changed within 24 hours! I totally recommend her!

I hope you are having a wonderful week!
Hugs and Love,

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Better Late Than Never!

Happy Sunday! I spent most of yesterday making my long awaited Dr. Seuss activities. Better late than never, right!? I am going to use these activities in my classroom this next week. I really like how the centers turned out. I hope you'll stop by TpT and check them out!
Hugs and lots of Love,

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Tornadoes! Numbers to 120 Charts! Awards!

Hi everyone! I hope your Saturday is going well. My thoughts are still with all of those who suffered through those horrible tornadoes this week. I saw on the news that there were over 90 tornadoes reported yesterday alone! That's insane!!

I grew up in the midwest and I used to LOVE a good thunderstorm. But now that I've lived in Utah for so long, I admit, I am a total wimp when I go back to visit family in Illinois and there is a thunderstorm. I seriously believe the thunder out there is significantly louder than what we experience out here in the mountains.....Or maybe, I've just become soft...

All I know is that I still have this crazy nightmare every now and then about a tornado chasing my sister and me through our house, down into our basement trying to suck us out of the house and all I can do is grab on to the metal pole in our basement with one hand and hang on to her with the other hand as she is flying up in the air....then I wake up. In a sweat. Ughh! So, yah, my thoughts are definitely with all of you.

On a brighter note, I made another FREEBIE!! Yeah!! This is for all of you who are using the new Common Math Core. First graders have to be able to count to 120. This freebie is printed on LEGAL paper. I just couldn't get it to fit on standard paper. I hope you can find it useful!

And now....for that moment you've all been waiting for!! Yesterday I mentioned in my blog post that
Barbara at Grade ONEderful and Chrissy from First Grade Found Me awarded my blog the Lovely Blog Award!! It totally made my whole week! (I had a crazzzzy week!)  Thank you so much for thinking of me, you two! If you haven't checked out their fantastic blogs, you must!! I love following both of them!
The rules for this award are to:
1. Link back to the blogger who gave you the award.
2. Pass the award on to 15 other lovely bloggers.
3. Follow the person who sent it to you.

The 15 Lovely Blogs I am passing this cute award on to are:
1. Ms. Preppy
2. Rowdy in First Grade
3. Criss Cross Applesauce in First Grade
4. Mrs. Jump's Class
5. Dragonflies in First
6. Teachin' First
7. The Honey Bunch
8. Miss Kindergarten
9. Chickadee Jubilee
10. Discovery Kid Zone
11. Finally in First
12. Doodlebugs Teaching
13. Ms. Rachel's Room
14. The Teacher's Cauldron
15. A Teeny Tiny Teacher

There is Only Love,

Friday, March 2, 2012

Friday Freebie - 100s Charts

TGIF!! That means it's time for another Friday Freebie!! My students are working on Numbers to 100, one more, one less, and ten more, ten less this next week. I needed some practice grids for some of my little guys who have been struggling so I made a few tonight! I hope you like!


 Thank you to Barbara at Grade ONEderful and to Chrissy from First Grade Found Me for the One Lovely Blog Award! You guys made my whole week!!! Thank you so much for this wonderful award. Sending you loads of love!! Please come back this weekend to see the 15 amazing blogs that I love following!

One of my FAVORITE blogs that I follow is Then She Made! She has the cutest little craft projects. Today on her blog she posted this beautiful necklace that she MADE!! I LOVE it!!
You have to check out her cute blog!

And on a more serious note, sending my thoughts and prayers to all my friends in the mid-west and south who have been effected by the rash of violent tornadoes. 

There is only Love,

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...