Thursday, November 29, 2012

Liebster Award - Very exciting!!!

How excited am I to be nominated for the Liebster Blog Award..... FIVE TIMES!!!

The Liebster Award is given to bloggers who are up and coming and have less than 200 followers. It is to show new bloggers that they are appreciated and to help spread the word about new blogs.   

I was nominated by the two lovely ladies, Heather and Miranda, at 2 Brainy Apples.  They have SUCH a cute blog and some really great products on Teacher pay Teachers.  They were nominated FOUR times for this award.  Obviously many people out there have realized how great they are!!! 

I was also nominated by First Grade Carousel for this award.  You need to go follow her blog because if someone gets nominated for a blog award after just a couple posts she MUST be good - right?  Well, you can tell just by reading some facts about how she plans to run a race all 50 states and has already done 13 of them and how much she loves first grade - you can tell she has lots to offer.  

While in the process of creating this post, I was then nominated THREE MORE TIMES!!!!!  Holy Moly!!!  I am honored!

I was nominated by For the Love of First Grade, Dancing in our Teacher Shoes, and Teacher Spice and Everything Nice.    Seriously - CHECK OUT THESE BLOGS BECAUSE THEY ARE SO CUTE AND FILLED WITH GREAT IDEAS!!!!  

So thank you ALL SO much for the nominations!!!
So here are the rules:
1. Post 11 random things about yourself
2. Answer the questions the nominator set for you.
3. Create 11 questions for your nominees.
4. Choose 11 other blogs with fewer than 200 followers to nominate and link them to your post.
5. Leave a comment on this post with your URL if you were nominated so I can learn more about you and see who you nominate.

Here are my 11 random things about me:
  1. This is my first year in first grade after the last 10 years in 3rd and 4th grade.  I am loving it and my little firsties!!!  They make me laugh every day :)
  2. I have been married to my high school sweetheart for 6 years.  
  3. We have two beautiful daughters (if I do say so myself).  Lauren is 4 and Hannah is 1.
  4. I LOVE Disney movies and am so happy to have kids of my own to watch them with so I don't have to watch them by myself.
  5. I am stubborn, but I try VERY hard to admit when I'm wrong.
  6. I failed an interview questionnaire to be a waitress (after waitressing all the way through college) because I answered the questions too honestly and admitted that I am stubborn.  The results showed that I was uncooperative!  Maybe too much honesty is not always a good thing!
  7. Speaking of being honest, I am the WORST liar!  I just can't do it!
  8. I really wish I had a great singing voice so I could be a pop star - Yep, I said it!  
  9. My friends are my family and I am so thankful to have such supportive, caring, funny, generous, smart, wonderful friends!!!
  10. I am also so thankful for my family and the times we get to spend together!  I really think I have the best family in the whole world - sorry to anyone who disagrees :)
  11. I love to travel and wish I had more money to do it more often.

Here are the questions 2 Brainy Apples had for me:

1. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?  Anywhere that was near my family and friends...but if I could uproot them then it would be Italy
2. Name a favorite childhood TV show. I loved Growing Pains
3. If you could do any other job, what would you do? Pediatrician
4. Where is your dream vacation spot? Bora Bora
5. What is your favorite food/dessert and drink? Ice cream and wine
6. What is your fondest memory? spending days with my grandparents when I was younger
7. What is your secret talent? hmmmm - probably walking into my house and knowing every thing that has been moved (not that our house is spotless, but I know where I put things and if they've been moved).  It scares my husband a little :)
8. What is your favorite current TV show or movie? I love Twilight movies and just saw the last one in theaters --- SO good!  On TV I love Modern Family
9. What do you want to do when you retire? Travel and volunteer to help in schools
10. What is the most impulsive thing you have ever done? I went to Italy over my school February break with my best friend because we didn't have it all planned out and we just went with it! 
11. What do you do for fun for yourself? shopping, go out with friends, scrapbooking if I have time

Here are the questions from First Grade Carousel:

1. What is your favorite thing about blogging? connecting with other teachers
2. Where is your favorite place to vacation? so far, Hawaii and Italy
3. What is your favorite children's book?  Guess How Much I Love You
4. What do you like to do when you are not working on things for your classroom? be with my family
5. If you could spend time with anyone ~ who would you like to meet and why? I'd like to meet Ellen DeGeneres because she is so funny and would be fun to hang out with
6. What food could you not do without? Pasta
7. Tell a bit about your best day ever as an educator.  My best day ever was at the end of last year with my favorite class (shhhh - don't tell the other classes).  We had made a music video to help pump us up for the state tests and we had also made an Anti-Bullying video that turned out really great.  We invited parents to school to see them both in the morning.  That afternoon we completed our year long scrapbooks with what we liked best about the year and then had a DANCE party.  It's so fun to watch kids let loose and just be kids!  They were a great class and I miss them!!!
8. What would you like to have more time for during the school day? ORGANIZING
9. What scares you most?  my family members dying :(
10. What is your favorite holiday or time of the year?  Christmas!!!!!!! but I also love summer
11. What do you tend to buy too much of?  clothes for my kids

Here are the 11 questions from For the Love of First Grade
1. What grade levels have you taught? I have taught 2nd, 3rd, 4th and now 1st
2. Which was your favorite and why? I LOVED 3rd grade but now I am loving 1st as well
3. How many times do you hit snooze before getting out of bed for work? Oh --- too many! I just hope it doesn't cause my husband to divorce me :)
4. What is your favorite read aloud?  Thank You, Mr. Falker by Patricia Polacco
5. How many times a week do you meet with your team? Usually once, but sometimes more
6. What is one teaching item you can't teach without? my document camera
7. Do you have to do recess or lunch duty? I have recess duty but not lunch duty
8. What is your favorite unit to teach? In 3rd grade I loved teaching most of our science units - especially sound and the water cycle.  In 1st grade I love being able to spend time on holidays!
9. What are your Christmas break plans? FAMILY, FAMILY, FAMILY!!! :)
10. What or who inspired you to blog? Hmmm - actually I was inspired by the teacher forums on Teachers Pay Teachers
11. Do you have a guilty pleasure?  I really love spending a whole day on the weekend in my pajamas just watching movies or playing with my kids

Here are the questions from Dancing in our Teacher Shoes
1. What do you do for “fun”?  I just like to go out for drinks, to the movies, shopping, or hang with friends
2. Who is your greatest influence or hero? Probably my mom and grandma
3. If you could go back in time to meet anyone, living or dead, who would it be and why?  I would choose to see my grandpa again and spend the day with him
4. What is your favorite picture book and do you read it to your students? my favorite read aloud is Thank You Mr Falker by Patricia Polacco
5. What is the craziest thing you have ever done for your students/teaching job? Usually at the end of the year I play Disney movie soundtracks and pretty much sing and dance around the room while they clean out their desks or do end of the year projects --- sometimes we have a dance party
6. What is your favorite way to recover/energize after a long week of teaching? an evening of laughing with wine and my friends or my husband
7. Where would you take your students on a field trip if money was not an issue? Disney World or Europe
8. What is one thing you have to do but wish that you didn’t? pay bills
9. If you had to design the teacher “uniform” for your school what would it be? jeans, t-shirt, and either flip-flops or Uggz
10. If you had to have a class pet what would it be? Ours would be a rock…sorry if we stole your idea. :-)  a turtle
11. What is the largest and smallest class sizes you have ever had in your career?largest was 25 and smallest was 17

Here are the questions from Teacher Spice and Everything Nice:
1. What grade do you teach? 1st grade
2. What are your hobbies? scrapbooking, shopping, and since I spend so much time doing --- creating lesson plans
3. What advice would you give to a first year teacher? don't be embarrassed to ask questions and to make mistakes - nobody knows it all the first year, even if you think you do
4. Do you have a teachers pay teachers store? If so, what is your favorite product? Yes - my favorite product of mine right now is my Reindeer Unit because I am having so much fun right now teaching it
5. When did you know you wanted to be a teacher? when I started my practicum classes in college
6. What TV series do you like? Friends is my all time favorite, but currently I love Modern Family
7. What is something a student did to make you laugh? my students make me laugh everyday with their innocent natures and random comments.  Recently it was talking about the recent presidential election and how they had no idea what was going on. 
8. What do you do for fun on the weekends? Hang out with my kids (and husband), veg out, hang out with friends
9. Why did you decide to start a blog? two months ago
10. What is your favorite blog to check up on? right now I just blog hop, but I do like to check the blogs of people who are following me
11. What is something on your gift wish list?a  Canon DSLR camera

Here are the blogs I am nominating
 You NEED to go check them out!!!!  They are all really great blogs with great ideas, freebies, and so much more!!!  
And here are my questions for my nominees:
  1. How long have you been teaching?
  2. What is your favorite thing about teaching?  Least favorite?
  3. What is the one thing in your classroom that you can't live without?
  4. What is your favorite food?
  5. What was your favorite vacation?
  6. What movie could you watch over and over?
  7. Mac or PC?
  8. What is your favorite subject to teach?
  9. Favorite childhood TV show?
  10. What do you like to do in your free time?
  11. If you weren't a teacher, what would you be?     

For all my nominees, please copy and paste the above instructions, questions, and such to your blog. And don't forget to comment on my post when you are done, so I can check out some new interesting info about you and see who you nominate!

WOW that was a long post!!!  Sorry :) 

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Cyber Monday Sale and Giveaway

TpT is having a sale and so am I!!!  
The sale will be Monday and Tuesday ONLY.  

I just added two Christmas products that you can get on sale: 

But this is also a great time to get any other products as well because TpT is offering 10% off EVERYTHING on the site with the Promo Code CMT12 ---- so that's 10% MORE on top of the sale I'm already throwing!  Here are some other products you might like to grab during this once a year sale:


The first 3 people who comment below can get their choice of the above products for FREE!!!  Leave me your email and which product you'd like and I will send it on over.   If you do win, I just ask that you follow me on here and on my store. 

Thanks so much!  Have fun with the sale :)

Monday, November 19, 2012

Turkeys on Strike!

 Of course turkeys would be on strike this time of year!  My little ones made these adorable turkeys who are trying to convince people to "Save a Turkey!  Eat more ________!"  The ones pictured chose beef jerky, Cheetos, and chocolate chip cookies.  



They had to come up with the "Top 3 Reasons why you should eat ______ for Thanksgiving instead of turkey".  We had brainstormed describing words before completing this activity and we focused on writing complete sentences.

The kids and I had a great time with these.  If you'd like to grab the signs and writing paper, click HERE!  I am still working on getting the patterns on the computer, but I don't think that will happen before Thanksgiving this year :(  There's always next year!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Election Day and Veteran's Day

Thank You Veterans - Past and Present!!!

I couldn't let these two important days go by without spending some time with my little firsties talking about why we should be Proud to Be Americans!

I posted some of the pictures from Election Day below.  Check out these activities HERE --

This says "I would say I am me, great to be me, and with my turtle in the deep blue sea."  Not sure where he got that from, but I love his creativity!   :)

I read them this cute picture book and we did a circle map about what characteristics a president should have.  This was where some of their ideas came from for the If I Were President writing.   Then they got to vote for president --- their choices are shown below. 

 And the winner is ...........................Drumroll please............................

MRS. MACHAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Not by much, but I'll take it!!!!!

We had lots of fun on Election Day!  Hope you did too!

The Day After Halloween

The day after Halloween is always a tough day - for both teachers and students.  I tried to make the most of it this year with my first graders by allowing time to talk about Halloween and providing hands-on activities to take us through the day.   Although we were all a little sleepy - it turned out to be a fun day!

 If you are interested in using these activities for Halloween next year, you can get them HERE.