July 2, 2015


So, I have received oodles of emails asking if I am hosting the Pen Pal Pair Up this year.  I might be insane taking this one on again . . . especially with the move to the new school, but I am going to accept the challenge! 

Look for sign ups to open the week after SDE/TPT Vegas (sometime after July 13th).  I am starting the process early to keep it as separate as possible from the back to school chaos that will hit hard in early August.  It will also allow me to spread the typing out a bit in an effort to keep my wonderful tendonitis in check.

The slots fill quickly (I take the first 500-700 teachers . . . we shall see how many I am game for), so be ready to jump on board quickly if you want in on this event!  I promise to give you a little notice before I post the sign up doc. This will give a fair "heads up" to all who might be interested.  With this said, be sure you follow my Instagram and Facebook accounts as I will announce the exact time the Pair Up will go live on both of these social media outlets. 

For those of you who don't know what the Pen Pal Pair Up is all about, I find another classroom/teacher to match you up with for the year.  In essence, I take the "finding" and "connecting" part out of the process for you . . . your class just has to take the time to write :)  It's a great way to work in geography and friendly letter writing.  Oh, and you don't have to be a blogger to participate.  I mostly pair up teachers K-6 (although I have found matches for some 7th and 8th in the past three rounds).

Alright, that is it from little old me today.  I will be back soon with a new classroom update and a freebie :)  Big hugs, y'all!

June 22, 2015


Since yesterday was the first day of summer and all, a handful my wonderful blogger buddies got together to host a sizzlin' giveaway.  Seriously folks . . . this one is B to the IG!

See . . . I told you this was a great one :)  

Let me quickly break this giveaway down for you.  To kick things off, a Cannon Rebel T5 is up for grabs.  This camera allows just about anyone to be a photographer.  But, wait.  We aren't stopping there.  We are also tossing in a bonus lens that will help you take snapshots with a little "blurred" background. Just think about how good your product and classroom action pictures will look with this amazing new toy :)

But, we still didn't hang it up here.  As a final treat, we added a fancy as all get out Jo Tote to the list of goods.  Yep. The mastermind behind this giveaway thought of EVERYTHING! 

Alright, so there you have it.  The contest started yesterday (yes, I am a little late to the party) and runs through the 28th.  Get yo-self entered STAT via the Rafflecopter below.  There are quite a few of us this time as we had to spread out the cost of the goods ($655 value).  However, you know these treats are worth a few extra clicks :)

Thanks for taking the time to visit me today.  Good luck my friends.  

a Rafflecopter giveaway

June 17, 2015


It's almost that time again! The time that thousands of teachers and bloggers head to Vegas for the annual SDE and Teachers Pay Teachers Conferences. To say we were excited would be an understatement! 

This year will be our 4th annual Vegas Teacher-Blogger Meet Up. What started as a fun little way to get to meet other teachers and bloggers from across the country, has turned into the BIGGEST teacher-blogger meet up ever!

Here are the details you'll want to know:

  • The meet up will be on Wednesday, July 8th, and will start at 6:30pm at the Venetian in the Galileo room. 
  • RSVP on our Facebook event page {HERE}
  • You will need to download, edit, and bring your own name tag. Download the file {HERE!} Below is an example of how your name tag should look. 

  • You do not need to be a blogger to attend. All teachers are invited and welcome to come! 
  • Please be ready to have fun, meet people, and make new friends! Make sure to post pictures to social media using the hashtag #2015vegasmeetup.
  • Our main sponsors for this event are SDE and TPT, although we have dozens more who will be donating prizes, swag, and other fun stuff! You do not want to miss out on these awesome prizes!
    • Here is a peek at this year's DIAMOND sponsors:

Please take a look at our amazing sponsors, visit their websites, and if possible say thank you for supporting this event! We have never charged an entrance fee for this meet up and it's because of all these wonderful, generous sponsors!      


And just to help you get even more excited, here's a peek at the fun we had at last year's meet-up! This year is sure to be even 

Check out all of our happy prize winners from last year...

Can't wait to see you all there!!

June 14, 2015


Well, I made it [[fist pump]]!  It was wild and insanely busy ride, but this final week of mine played out dang near perfectly for little ol' me.  "Perfect" sounds a bit snobbish.  Know that I am not referring to my teaching, as we all know that's NEVER perfect . . . hehehehe.  However, my final week working at my little school, my big move, and saying goodbye were the things that turned out so well.  So, on that note, I give you a Five For Friday that has an extra special place in my heart.  It's probably more for me than for you.  However, I am tossing this one out there anyway :)

This year taught me so much about myself and my teaching.  It wasn't always the easiest, but we fought our way through and these little sweeties made some great growth.  We had a great final run filled with lots of play and good cheer. Good luck and happy summer to all the sweeties of ROOM 13 :)

When the kids exited on Thursday, the staff celebrated with the 3rd Annual Pub Crawl.  Teachers, aides, bus drivers, cafeteria workers, etc. all got together for some adult beverages, fabulous prizes, chatter, and dancing. These crawls are always so much fun as Evergreen has the sweetest staff around.  
Yes, there was a megaphone involved.
I'm sure the other bar patrons loved us . . . hehehehe.
Just look at these fabulous prizes . . .
An empty box of copy toner.
If you work at Evergreen, you know!!! 
We swarmed the streets.
SUCH a wonderful crew!
Yes, I bumped tunes from my portable box as we crawled.
What can I say?  It was the LAST day of school.

Speaking of the sweetest staff . . . this is what made my exit so terribly hard this year. Evergreen has been my home away from home for 8 long years and some of my BEST friends in the world are here. Turning in my key was one of the hardest things that I have ever had to do.  It was like losing a part of me. I am SO excited for my next chapter, but saying goodbye is so difficult.  A huge piece of my heart will always belong to my favorite little country school. 

One of our fearless admins.
She brought a positive light and energy back to our campus.
She always went above and beyond and was right there to cheer you on.
She's one of a kind.
Some of my favorite ladies in the world.
Teaching friendships are priceless!
Gonna miss my old neighbor.
The laughs and utter shenanigans were endless.

He's one in a million.
An empty lanyard and classroom felt so weird.
I cried my eyes out in the parking lot, but I didn't look back.

Lord . . . where do I even begin on number 4?  It is SUCH a big one. Well, let's just say that I was one of the luckiest teachers in the world this year. When are you ever in a position to job share with one of your BEST friends? Well, that was me last year. Not working with you is going to be like trying to teach without my right arm . . . seriously, Court. Thanks for the laughs, tears, support, and love. I wouldn't have survived this LONG round without you :) Good luck in your new adventure. B.C. is SO lucky to have you.

My partner in crime . . . doing what she does best :)
This was after "crawling" for a bit ;)
Dolling and her crazy eyes!

Well, in the words of Porky . . . That's All Folks.  I get my new key to my new classroom at my new school on Monday.  My life's passion is currently jam- packed in my garage.  

This isn't even the final picture.  It's completely full now :)
The boy damn near had a heart attack at the sight of his beloved man-space.

On a final note, I can't help but get a little sentimental about it all.  {Again, this post is more for me and my co-workers than anything . . . so please excuse the gushing.}  Evergreen was a magical place that believed in me enough to kick start my career eight short years ago.  It feels like a lifetime, but a mere blink at the same time.  I have been such a hot mess this week -- emotional as all get out and crying at the drop of a hat. {My husband doesn't know quite what to do with me.}  Being so excited and so sad at the same time really does a number on someone.  With this said, it's obvious that this special little country school made a lasting impression on me. I will forever miss you, Evergreen. Thanks for one hell of a ride.  

One last look before I go.

June 5, 2015


As we said "SEE YA" to May, I quickly discovered that I was (and still am) running a bit behind.  But, then again, I always seem to be a bit tardy.  We are down to just 4 little days after the kids jet for the weekend. I am doing my best to keep my head down as "looking up" kinda freaks me out right now.  I am sure those of you who are still in the trenches feel a very similar chaos right now ;)

As for the last week, I have no idea where it went (status quo as of late). However, it has been a great run. Here's a little peek at what the crazy over at The Factory has been up to . . . 

Like most of you out there, I am way overwhelmed at the moment.  I pride myself on being able to remember things.  However, these past few hectic weeks have tipped the scale for me and my trustworthy memory isn't so trustworthy any more.  Therefore, I have resorted to WRITING EVERYTHING DOWN.  And, let's face it, I love a good list that I can cross things off off. Well, I snagged some weekly list pads from Creative Paper Collection (the genius clip artist . . . Krista Wallden).  Last week's list is shown below and the one I have been using this week is just as packed. I am in love with these simple organizers.  They are bright, cheery, and align with how my silly little brain works.  These have been one of my favorite finds this year.  

It comes in a two pack!
I picked up some darlin' note cards for the end of the year too.
Click the button below to check out her FB page.

It's hard to believe that I will say goodbye to my wonderful co-workers and my home away from home for the past 8 years next week.  It is bittersweet for sure. I am thrilled to get to work in my "backyard" come August, but with the excitement comes a bit of angst and sadness.  Change is always tough, but I am ready for a breath of fresh air. With this said, a new school means only one thing . . . PACKING! And, boy oh boy, has it started.  I have been bringing a car load home every day for the past week and I barely made a dent.  I have so much #$%@!!!!  I am being very mindful as I place things in boxes and I am labeling like a mad woman. If you have any moving/packing tips for me, let me know . . . I am open to suggestions at this point :) 

See . . . barely a dent.
I'm in T-R-O-U-B-L-E!
This is what it looked like when I moved five years ago.
And, this was just across campus.

If you are still in the classroom -- end of the year or summer school -- you may be interested in doing something for Father's Day.  Well, I made a packet back in 2012 and until last week, I cringed every time it sold.  It was super UG-O! I finally did something about that (my pride just couldn't take it any more) and I updated it.  Melonheadz helped save the day and I no longer hide behind my hands when a sale comes in!  It has two crafts, a song, and a handful of standards-based activities for 1st - 2nd graders.  We have lots of kiddos without fathers this year . . . I couldn't overlook these cuties or leave my sweet buyers scrambling to try and come up with something else.  So, alternate templates are included for our babes without dads.  CLICK HERE to check it out.  I am putting this pack and my Countdown to Summer Survival Kit on sale through the weekend . . . 20% :)

I have managed to find a bit of balance this late in the game . . . chalk one up for Dolling finally learning to call a "time out" every so often.  What does this balance look like for me . . . um . . . the golf course.  I played a few times last week and hit an evening chipping clinic last night.  Although I am so busy right now, I find that the calm of the course helps it all melt away.  Well, at least for that hour. It also has been a great way for me to connect with the boy as he has been a bit neglected as of late (he knows end of the year drill). #sorrydear

Shhh! Don't tell him I posted a photo.
He looks like a serious golfer . . . hehehehe :)

I can't cheer quite yet . . . but, report cards are ALMOST finished.  The mountain of assessments was huge this trimester (poor kiddies) and it took forever for us to get through them.  Thank goodness my teaching partner and I hit this relay style -- you go . . . I go . . . you go . . . I go.  It helped quite a bit with the workload!  We have two slots left to discuss this afternoon and then I think we can finally click PRINT.  Thank the grading GODS.  

These math tests were monsters.
Thank goodness for grading in front of the TV.
The Fall (Netflix) has been the perfect multi-task show!

Alright, that's it from me.  I hope you have a wonderful weekend . . . send me good packing vibes.  I'll be back soon next week!  


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