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Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Goodreads Goal

You may remember that I am a member and a lover of the website Goodreads.  You can read about that post here.  You may also remember that I told you that Goodreads has a yearly challenge where you can pledge to read a certain number of books.  You may also also remember that I failed to meet my goal of 52 books in the year 2013 (seriously think I had half, either way, I've blocked it out of my memory already).

I doesn't seem that I am a very fast learner, because here I am again this year with the same goal.  I am even going to put the Goodreads widget back on my sidebar (shame made me take it down before).  It may help keep me on track!

If you are a Goodreads member, look me up and be my Goodreads friend!  I don't belong to many groups, and have never written a review yet, but I love to look at the feeds and see what everyone is reading.

Wish me luck!

Monday, February 24, 2014

Sahara Special

I love this new linky I just found from another blog I stalk read.  The linky is called Must-Read Monday from Amanda's blog Teaching Madness.

I know that I have shared with you that I really love books on tape.  I borrow them from my local library and then download through my phone through a wonderful app called Overdrive.  Many of your local libraries use some sort of media console for their audio and e-books.  

So, the book that I finished recently was called Sahara Special by Esme Raji Codell.  It was a Rebeca Caudill Nominee here in Illinois in 2006.

It is a wonderful book about a teacher who has made a huge difference in an inner city girl's life as she is going through the separation/divorce of her parents.  It is a very touching book that has you rooting for the main character Sahara every step of the way.  There are a few choice words in the book, so you would want to read it with mature upper elementary or middle school students.  I think that this would be a great book for character study.  The characters, major and minor, behave in some unexpected ways that would be great for analyzing the motivations behind their actions.

Thanks Amanda for providing us book lovers with ways to talk about what we are reading!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

February Currently

I know what you are thinking, "What is she doing?  She is going to be the very last person to link up for 'Currently' this month.  What's the point?"  I know that this is assuring myself a spot in the Slacker Hall of Fame, but late is better than never.  Who knows, maybe I wanted to be the last person to link up (can't say I don't have goals).

I like listening to books on tape, CD, playaway or whatever.  Let's face it, it doesn't matter what age we are, we still love to be read to.  I have always been a fan of Dean Koontz.  Lightning was one of my absolute favorites by him.  I download most of the books on my phone from the local library and listen to them on my commute or while up in my new office (more on that).

We have a 4 bedroom house.  Each of the girls have their own room, our room, and then a guest room.  The guest room used to have a queen size bed in it.  It was always my hot spot for dumping things.  More and more, anyone who visits us is a singleton, so why the need for the double bed?  Enter my wonderful mom who suggested I put in a day bed and make the rest of the room my office.  She. Is. Brilliant!  I don't have any before pictures, but here are some afters.  I am not done (walls need more color), but you get the idea.

We have 2 more weeks of our school wide Fountas and Pinnell testing.  I feel like I am drowning in a good way.

Don't think I need to comment!

Love having Lilah around.  She is really starting to settle in, she's getting used to her crate, and knock on wood, we have not had an accident in the house in a month.  HOWEVER, I am having a problem with all of the dog hair on my dress clothes.  I use the little rolls of tape on a handle (don't know what they are called), but it is not good enough.  Her hair is short and coarse, so it really grabs a hold of my dress clothes and won't let go.  Any ideas are welcome!

2 Truths and a Fib
Yes, I could do the limbo on roller skates. I am not sure what the current world record is, but my best was
8 inches.  I looked a lot like this:

I do have an aunt named Betty Crocker!

The last is the fib.  I did enter the Miss Macomb pageant while in college.  Most embarrassing moment of my life was when they called my contestant number as the winner, but someone else's name.  For a whole 2 minutes I shared the title with the other girls until the judges confirmed it was not me who won, it was her.  I like to think of those moments as character building.  I built A LOT of character that day! :)

Thanks for reading!

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner!

Thanks for all who helped me to celebrate my birthday!  The raffle ended late last night, and we have a winner!  Drum roll please................

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Check your email Megan, and enjoy!

I also have another winner for Wendy.  I asked for anyone to comment on the best or most unique birthday present that they had received.  I would say a trip to Mexico qualifies as pretty good! (Plus, she was the only one who commented with a birthday present!  She pretty much had it wrapped up!) :)  Look for an email to come from me today for your choice of an item from my store.

Thanks all!  Now off to an elementary girls basketball game.  Seriously the best part (and best chuckle) of my day!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Birthday Celebration!

I posted a few days back about my belated Birthday celebration that I am having.  I promised something fun everyday this week.  Then our Internet provider decided it was a good day to work on the lines near our house last night.  So, no fun celebration yesterday!

I am making up for it today!  Today until Thursday, my TpT shop will be 20% off.  Stop by and pick up some of those items you have on your wish list!

Secondly, comment on this post about the most unique or best birthday present you have ever received.  One comment will be chosen to pick an item of choice from my store ($10.00 or less) for free.  Please don't forget to give your email in the comment, so I can get back to you.

If you haven't entered the birthday raffle, here it is!  Enter now for a chance to win a $25.00 TpT gift certificate.  Raffle ends on Valentine's Day!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Five For Sunterday? And A Giveaway!!

I have been so involved in watching the Olympics that I kind of forgot about anything else (grooming, eating).  So, I'm a little late in doing this week's Five for Friday, but I have a lot of fun things coming up.

1.  This weekend I spent about an hour and a half loading up Girl Scout Cookies for our local division.  This was my first experience with this, and it is amazing how the leaders have this fine-tuned!  So, there are about 45-50 troops in our division who took part in cookie selling.  Troops come in 15 minutes intervals.  They check in and then drive up to the first stop:  Thin Mints.  They are first because they are the most popular so it is easier to fit them into the cars.  Some troops needed 3 cars to pick up all of their cookies!  When our volunteering was done, we picked up our cookies.  Here is our troop leader, our cookie mom, and me (brown coat, gray boots) with our haul.

2.  Yesterday was our park district's annual Daddy Daughter Dance.  The hubs took both of our little ladies out for the evening.  Dinner, dancing, and fun with friends.  The girls came home exhausted, but had a great time (the hubs too)!

I know I'm biased, but seriously, how cute are they?

This one has me concerned about what she will be like in college!

Little does anyone know that she has on her bright orange and gray tennis shoes on (no joke)!

3.  I am in the process of updating some of my products.  I know that I don't have that many yet, and not a lot of variety in them yet.  However, after having used them with students, there are some changes I have felt that they needed.  If it is anything major, I am letting all my followers know.  I am also trying to update graphics.  I mean, come on, those Melonheadz graphics just make everything cuter (especially the ones with the missing front teeth)!

Old Cover ........

New Cover!

4.  We are in the process of Benchmarking (using the Fountas and Pinnell Benchmark Systems) every student in our building.  I know what you are thinking, "Yeah, big deal, we do that too!"  The big deal for us is that teachers are doing most of the testing themselves.  They received training from our district and now they are trying it in their rooms.  Each grade level has a week to test and I "shadow" them the first day to make sure that they have the hang of it.  It is a big change for some of our teachers, and I have to say, they are taking it on and doing fabulous.  Not only that, but many have said that they are very intrigued by the results that they are getting.  I love that they are seeing the value of it, but I am drowning in data!!

5.  Today (February 9th) is my forty something mumble, mumble, grumble birthday.  As much as a I hate getting a year older, I love being a year wiser.  The experiences from this past year, have taught me a lot.  So, in celebration, I am having a giveaway for all of my new and old (just like me) followers.  Enter the raffle below for your chance to win a $25.00 Teachers Pay Teachers Gift Certificate.  Raffle will end at midnight on Friday, February 14th.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Because I fully believe that a birthday should be a week (if not longer) celebration, I am continuing the celebration all week long.  Everyday will be something different, from Flash Freebies to Comment Winners.  It will help if you follow me on TPT, Bloglovin', and Facebook!


Well, time to get ready to tackle the work week!