Thursday, October 6, 2011

My World Turned Upside Down

Just a week after my last post in August, I received some devastating news...I have cancer.  For a brief time, my world was turned upside down as I shared the news with my family especially my four children.  I did start my year at school and worked for a month as I saw numerous doctors and discussed possible treatments.  I started chemo two weeks ago, and my doctor insisted that I not work during the 18 weeks of  treatment.  I was crushed at first when I heard that news because teaching has always felt like my lifeline in this world.  But as my white blood cells cancelled out to zero this week, I understood that being around children could make me seriously ill.  On Monday, I had a port surgically implanted in my chest, which will make it much easier to receive the chemo.  I've been trying to take good care of myself and eat wholesome food.  I even try to exercise a little bit each day.  I'm trying to stay positive...even this morning as I brushed my hair and watched it fall out.  I believe that every thing in life has a purpose and is a lesson.  One lesson that I have already learned as a result of my diagnosis is that I was way too concerned about things that in the big scheme just aren't important.  If I am blessed with the gift of more time, I plan to live my life more simply.  I plan to devote more time to my family and just simply appreciate the gift of life...something I fear I have taken for granted.  Teaching and creating lessons is still an interest of mine; just not an all-consuming goal.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Getting Ready!

I went to school today only to find out that the floors haven't been cleaned yet.  So I was unable to set up any desks or move things around.  I was able to organize all my books at least.  My dilemma is that I saw our cleaning guy (we don't have a custodian because it is cheaper to have a cleaning service) sleeping in the supply room.  I went and made some copies and did some laminating and came back 45 minutes later, and he was still sleeping in there.  I don't want to be a "tattler," but come on there are good people out there that need jobs.  Plus he came into my room twice complaining about the work his boss wants him to do.  I wanted to say, "isn't that your job?"  I probably won't say anything; what would you do?

Friday, July 29, 2011

It's almost here!!  First big sale of the new school year on TeachersPayTeachers.  Make sure you put it on your "TO DO" list.   The sale starts August 1 and offers a 10% discount.  The code is B1T1S.  Many stores are offering an additional discount which means really big savings!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Check it Out...Great Resource!

Check out this great Telling Time Resource Packet from Denise at Sunny Days.  It is really a very complete and fun packet!  I can't wait to use it in my own classroom!

Classroom Behavior Management Linky Party

Check out how other teachers deal with classroom behavior issues here:

1.    At the top left of the picture you can see my "How is your day chart."  What you can't see is that there is a smiley face on each card.  If the child stays on the green card with the smiley face they are eligible for my end of the day raffle.  I draw one popsicle stick and that child will get to pick out of my prize box. 

2.  Along with the card system, I do 1-2-3 Magic in my room; the book is a quick read (  Behaviors that I want to stop, I count.  Count 1 flip to a yellow card, Count 2 flip to a blue card, Count 3 flip to the pink card and go to the time out desk.  I started this last year, and either I had an awesome class, or this system really works.  Here is my time-out desk.  You can't see the poster but it's the ABC's of a good classroom citizen.  They can read as they sit in timeout.
I just bought this jumbo timer for my timeout desk.  

Giveaway Winner Announced!

The Winner is Terri Browne from:
Thank you Terri!  Please feel free to browse my store and email me with your choices at

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Celebrating Two Times Over!

To celebrate over 100 followers, I'm having a giveaway.  Similar to the other giveaways, I will use a random number generator to find the winner.   Please consider doing the following to be entered.   The contest will end on 7/27.   THANK YOU! THANK YOU!

2.  Follow me on my blog.
3.  Comment on a blog post of your choice.
4.  Like me on my facebook link found on this blog.

The winner can pick out any 3 items from my store.  Here are some ideas.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Favorite Back to School Activity Linky Party

If you want to share your favorite back to school activity, head here:

1.  I do this smartboard activity with my kids.  They come up and tap on a square to reveal a question like, "Do you have a pet?" or "What is your favorite book?" or "Do you have any brothers or sisters?"

2.  We also do paper plate portraits.  I give the students a paper plate, markers, and yarn and they create a portrait that looks just like themselves.

Huge Give Away By Sunny Days

Last chance to get in on this huge giveaway!  Check out the details here:  Check out my site to pick out the power point or smartboard lesson of your choice: 

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Grade Level Linky Party

Check out  for a grade level linky party.  Link up with teachers at your own grade level and share great ideas!

Men with Purses!!

I just got back from vacation and one thing has become quite clear to me.  MEN NEED TO CARRY PURSES!  Every day my husband asked me to carry the following items in my purse:  his water bottle, glasses, cell phone, keys (which are just too bulky to carry in his pocket), and a pair of fresh socks!  He's walking around free as a breeze, and I feel like a pack mule because my purse also has my water bottle, cell phone, keys, and you know...numerous other necessary items.  The worst part is every time he wants to use one of his items, I have dig through my purse to find it, which is an exasperating task!!  What do you this purse manly enough?

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Christmas in July Sale!!!!

It's always a great day when you save money!!  For one day only, approximately 30 other teachers and I are sponsoring a 20% sale on our entire store.  Please visit my store by clicking on the TeachersPayTeachers Link in the sidebar of my blog.  To view the other sales go here:

Here are some of my recently posted items on TPT:

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Classroom Shopping Linky Party

Love this linky party at where you will find lots of great finds.

Oh yes, I too have been shopping.  These are my great finds from Oriental Trader, which just arrived today!

These say Happy Birthday from your teacher.

 I have a smiley face theme in my classroom, and these water bottle covers are going to look so cute sitting on their desks.  I was going to buy plastic water bottles for all the kids so everyone would have one, but then I saw these cute covers.  I will buy the bottles (Walmart brand) that fit in them, and then the kids can just refill their bottles.
 To save on paper next year, I laminated a ton of stuff over the summer.  I plan to have a binder for each child and then they can use dry erase markers and erasers and reuse, reuse, reuse.  These erasers from Oriental Trader are really nice.
 This is a jumbo 3-minute timer.  I plan to use it on my time-out desk.  That way there is no embarrassing timer to go off.
 I use name tags throughout the year for a variety of things.
I love these hall passes on lanyards: girls' & boys' bathroom pass, hall pass, library pass, nurse pass, and office pass.  I really just wanted the boys and girls bathroom lanyards because the passes that I have always get left in the bathroom...ewwwww.  These will go around their neck and should always come least I hope.  Happy Shopping!!!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Classroom Jobs Linky Party

Hop over to if you would like to share your job chart with others.  Here is mine:

First of all notice, that I have to use a stand for my jobs pocket chart.  I simply have no wall space available.  

1.  Calendar - Calendar person has to put in the date, plus change the yesterday, today and tomorrow cards.  I ask the calendar person many questions like is the date even or odd.  What will the date be one week from today.  What is the pattern (aabb, abc, abc, etc.)
2.  Hundred Day Chart - this person puts in the day that corresponds with the days we have been in school.  They have to  state whether the number is odd or even, they have to write it in expanded form on the board, and they have to round it to the nearest ten and after we reach a hundred then they round to the nearest hundred as well.
3.  Money Chart - this person represents the number of days we have been in school in 3 different ways.  Then I ask question like if there are 10 dimes in 1 dollar, how many dimes would be in 5 dollars
4.  Time - this child has to read the time, and then I time them on the clock 5's.  
5.  Temperature - I have a large thermometer and this child rounds the temperature to the nearest ten.
6.  Word Wall - This person points to words and the kids recite them.
7.  Office -  This child delivers lunch money, notes to the office.
8.  Paper Passer - Also sharpens pencils.

These pictures show them at work.  I also have monthly jobs like bathroom monitor and quiet captain.

What TPT Means to Me

Visit  to join a linky party "What TPT Means to Me!"

1.  Most importantly it is an outlet for creativity.  It is unique and allows me to express myself.  

2.  It is a great resource for my classroom!

3.  It is a great way to connect to other teachers and share ideas.

4.  It provides me with extra income so that I can do things that I wouldn't otherwise get to do.  Like....this summer my daughter and I have been hitting the garage sales buying things for her new college apartment.  Here are some of our finds which are taking up precious space in my garage.  Husband has to park outside!

This is a full size bed that we got at a garage sale for $5.00 (including mattress which was in awesome shape!)  The bed is only 3 years and was bare wood, so we painted it black.  It also has pull out drawers that go underneath...great for tiny apartment.

This is the comforter set we bought at Bed, Bath & Beyond!  Not my taste, but she loves it!!

This is a night stand we got at a garage sale for $15.00.  Now doesn't that go nice with the Zebra-striped comforter?  Yikes!  Again she is in heaven!

She has no cabinet in her bathroom (just a sink) so we got this at a garage sale ($5) to go over the toilet.

This is a TV stand we got for $3.00 bucks.  The same garage sale had a really nice Sony DVD player for $2.00.  She's supposed to be saving money to buy cable...let's hope so!

This is a microfiber couch we got on Craigslist for $40.00.  I steam cleaned it myself and it came out like new.  The pillows are just the perfect touch and came from Kohls, buy one and get one free plus another 15% off.  (My husband doesn't know those were mums the word!)
This coffee table was from the same Craigslist ad as the couch.  The guy said he would throw it in for an extra $10.00.  It was covered with shot glasses and beer glasses, and I said to my daughter that we will probably have to paint it black.  But, when we went to pick it up, it was perfect, not a scratch on it so no paint!

Another awesome find at a garage sale was this large area rug for $5.00.  It will help hide some sins on the carpet in that college apartment!

This black desk was on Craiglist for FREE!!!  I was so happy we didn't have to sand and paint it!

Yup, you guessed it, another garage sale find for $5.00.  I did have to sand and paint this one, and we are going to buy handles to match the desk.

Mirrors from Ikea.  We are going to paint the brown ones black to match.  50 cents each!

Large tin star, a free discard from her sister.   Plus she has found cute dishes, candles, lamps, pots and pans, shower curtain.  Really the only thing left on her wish list is a little table and chairs for her tiny kitchen.  She has collected so much that I have had to reserve a Uhaul.  This is a first!  Usually my husband's van and my car was enough to get kids back and forth to college.  I told my daughter she's going to have to stay put for the next two switching apartments now!

My son is in grad school, and he will be home this weekend.  I can't wait to see his reaction to all the stuff in the garage.  When he moved into an apartment, we got him a pull out love seat and tv stand.  That along with his computer and video games seemed to be all he needed!

Also at garage sales this summer, I have bought a ton of books for my classroom.  Most of them went for 25 cents each!  I also found stuff for my prize box and art box!  Because of TPT, I feel a little less apprehensive about spending a little extra cash to provide some comfort for my kids.  I am also taking a trip to North Carolina to see my other daughter who is doing a residency there.  She just moved there from New York and rented an apartment   after only seeing the model, and I guess her actual apartment is awful.  Stains on the carpets, stains on the ceiling, and it smells moldy!  I probably will be painting and cleaning while I'm there!  So, once again, that TPT money comes in handy.