Thursday, February 21, 2013

A Successful President's Day!

Charlie and I have done some renovations to our house little by little. We've updated the floors in most of the house a while back. Charlie slaved away to install our laminate floors. Which, by the way, I love and I couldn't be happier with what we installed. We are now getting ready to do some long awaited updates to our house.

We actually have a leak in our master bathroom shower so that's what jumpstarted this renovation. After having the plumber out to check on the leak he said we'd have to rip out the fiberglass shower in order to fix a broken pipe. Since we'd have to rip out the shower stall, we decided to take advantage of the situation and upgrade our shower to tile, and while we were at it, we'd go ahead and change out the floor in our master bathroom, guest bathroom and laundry room!

Charlie and I both have the day off today, so we took the opportunity to pick out the flooring and tile for the renovation. We had some samples of flooring dropped off at our house earlier in the day, and surprisingly enough, we came to a pretty quick decision on what floor we'd like. After feeling confident about being able to make decisions about this renovation, we headed off to the tile store and this part of the adventure was completely overwhelming. After wandering around the store like lost puppies, we finally had some guidance from the sales lady and she was so helpful! We definitely couldn't have done it without her! So here ya go...here's a preview of what our new floors and shower will look like in just a few days!


Can I just say, I'm so excited to be getting this done! Our house will be turned upside down over the next few days, but I know it will be worth it in the end!




Sunday, February 17, 2013

I Am Going to Get Better at This....



So, I promised I'd begin writing again.......and then I didn't. I had a couple of you call me out on it, so here I am, posting to my blog! (I really am going to try to do better!!)

Most people I run into that know I'm in my first year teaching ask me, "how's your first year going?" And my answer to them, "It's been a whirlwind of a year!" Which is completely true. Turns out, there's a BIG learning curve when you start your first year and I'm just in the thick of it. There's nothing that can truly prepare you for having your own classroom. Not student teaching, not even the two years of subbing experience I had (where I was in the classroom a good majority of the time). Now, don't get me wrong. Those experiences were wonderful in preparing me for my first year, it's just that there's no comparable experience of having your own classroom...until you have your own classroom.

I've had my moments of "I won't try that again!" and "Wow, that actually worked!" that I'm beginning to log away to use for future years to come. It's hard to believe that I've already starting to prepare myself for next year. One of the things I beginning to do is to re-file all of my hard copies of activities, worksheets, and tests. This blows my mind because I spend so long going through files this summer filing them away into my filing cabinet. (The teacher that I took the place of didn't have the best organizational skills...) But, you live and you learn, and I've learned I like my items filed in a different way! I've also created my weekly classroom newsletter for next year this weekend. It's similar in set up to my newsletter that I send out this year, I just changed up a few things and, voila! Here's a little preview of what the document looks like:



I love it! It's fun and fresh!

So far this year has been a physical, emotional, and mental roller coaster of an experience and I wouldn't trade a moment of it for anything!


Thursday, January 3, 2013

Annnd....I'm Back.


I'm sure you may have noticed that I sort of fell off the face of the blogging world when my school year started. The first few months of teaching have been pretty hectic and crazy! Just trying to find my "groove" and routine for my everyday life was/is a huge challenge, much less trying to fit in all the extra things in my life like blogging! But...here we are in a new year and one of my resolutions and challenges for myself is to start blogging again. So here I am. Making an attempt.
I've got lots of things to catch up on and also fill you in on all the things going on in my life! So stay tuned...next post I'll let you know how I did on my resolutions from last year and what my new challenges are for this year.


Sunday, July 29, 2012

My Classroom Reveal!!


I've come to the end of my summer break! (So sad!) And I have to say....I don't think I've worked so hard over a summer, ever. I've been up at school working in my room nearly 3 times every week and every day this past week. I've worked many long hours in my room. Especially this past week. The earliest I left school this past week was 8:00 p.m.!

With all these long hours, I can finally say my classroom is ready for the parents and kiddos today for orientation! Yippee! 

So, here you go....here's a look at the hard work I did over the summer!


The view of my room right when you walk in...


The view from the classroom library corner....

The view from my desk...

The view from the corner with the tv...

Some of my wall decorations...








I've still got several more things I've got to work on this week before Thursday, such as labeling all my book bins, labeling various items with the kids names/numbers on them, and running off papers for the first week of school. But I'm so happy with the way my room has turned out! I've truly been blessed.


Sunday, July 22, 2012

My Last Week of Summer

That's right, you read my title right....this is my last week of summer! This time next week I'll have already meet my students and their parents at orientation! Then, I'll have a few days of meetings and in-service, and next thing you know--it's the first day of school! I must say, this summer has gone by incredibly fast. I've spent a lot of time up at school, working on my classroom and preparing my lessons. I just can't believe I've only got a little over a week before it's time to get back to school!

I'll be finishing preparing my classroom for school all week, and I'll be sharing pictures of my classroom later!


Friday, July 20, 2012

Volleyball


This is my second year to be coaching volleyball. Last year I started out coaching the 7th grade middle school team at Madison Academy and this year I got to move up with my same girls and coach them again in 8th grade.

I've had so much fun coaching these sweet girls! I definitely learned a lot last year. It was great to be back around the game other than a pick up game here and there. I did find that coaching is very different from playing! I had a lot to learn in how to balance the team dynamics, pulling out the best in my players, and inspiring them to do well. As well as all the fun administrative things coaches take care of that I took for granted as a player.

Coaching volleyball is such a blessing and I'm so happy I get to do the things I love!


Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Classroom Sneak Peek

I've been spending a lot of time in my classroom lately. I've got 3 WEEKS to get it in tip top shape! Oh.my.goodness. Deep breaths.....

Here's a few items that I've been working on! 


I've been collecting books from anyone who was willing to give them to me! I had some myself, at the end of the year I was given 2 boxes from an old 5th grade teacher, and I had another friend from college give me 4 big boxes of books she used when she taught 5th grade! Plus several other people that have given me books here and there.

Here's my attempt at organizing them. Yikes! I know. It's been a couple days since I've taken this picture and I'm still working on organizing them....


Here's a look at my classroom library. I found the bins at Dollar General. The chair is one that I had when I was a teenager and have had it in storage for years. The run came from Old Time Pottery.  My Mom is working on making a cute little curtain for the window.
I'm going for a bright and colorful look! I'm not nearly finished with it, but it's starting to take shape!


I also got these adorable chalkboard clothespin labels for my class! I'm planning on using these to display student work in the hallway!


This bunting banner was one of my first purchases after I found out I'd be teaching this year. I don't really have a "theme" for my class, except bright and colorful inspired by this design.

Here I've got my cursive alphabet above my white boards. (Cursive should be interesting because I don't write in cursive....ever! I print everything!) And my bunting banner is hanging off the top of my whiteboard to give it some color at the front of the room!


Here you can see an example of some more colorful parts of my classroom. Each kid has a lunch card with their lunch number. When they buy a school lunch they hand their card to the lunch lady to scan. I found the "lunch cards" letters at the Dollar Tree, and the pockets are the same design as my bunting banner. I'm also considering putting a boarder up around this sign....I haven't decided yet.

I'm also planning on using the pockets for my classroom jobs.


As you can see, my classroom is beginning to take shape! All the furniture is in place and I'm beginning to hang things on the walls! I've still got a lot of work to do in my classroom library as well as getting other items ready to hang on the walls, and don't forget bulletin boards! 

My lesson planning is beginning to come together and I'm starting to feel better about them.