Saturday, June 29, 2013

I am lovin' me some Bloglovin'....finally

As you have been reading....Google Reader is going away July 1st.  July 1st!  That is Monday.

I feel like everyone is preparing like it is the turn of the century when all of our bank accounts were supposed to disappear and the world as we knew it was supposed to come to an end on January 1, 2000.    My bank account is still as empty as before, and the world is still here....but just in case I want to be prepared.

Bloglovin' seems to be the way many are going and it is easy to sign up.  Click, click, click and you are done.  Be Prepared....sign up, transfer the blogs you already follow (maybe find a new one or two), and July 1st will not become the apocalypse of the blogging world.

Thanks to Megan at I teach.  What's your super power?  I have the little widget installed and you can easily follow me. Just click on the button on the right sidebar.  I will be prepared, you will be prepared, and all will be right with the world.
Still need more help (I did).  Head over to to Megan's blog and she has several good posts explaining how it all works, like this one here.  You do not want to be caught with No Lovin'

Now go out and get you some bloglovin'

Friday, June 28, 2013

Five for Friday....Vacation

This week has been crazy!  I know this should be all about pictures, but please indulge me and let me tell a couple of stories first.

Every year my mom comes out from Pennsylvania to visit my sister and me.  We hang out here and there, shop a bunch, and go to Cedar City for the Utah Shakespearean Festival. Often we travel around to see grandkids and great-grandkids, but this year she has come out twice for weddings (the most recent being April), so we stayed pretty close to my sister's house.

For those who like a good shopping on.  The three of us went to Kohl's, spent a long time checking out all the clearance racks, tried a bunch of stuff on, and picked out things she could leave here for Christmas for all those grandchildren.  When we got to the check out mom paid for everything, because she could get the senior citizen discount (just 15%).  We asked about whether they had any other deals going (like 30% and Kohls cash), but our cashier said no.....they don't do that very often.  I was thinking really??  It seems I am always getting those percentage off coupons in the mail.  Sure enough...we get home and waiting in my sister's mailbox 30% off!  Now we spent $300.  It was worth the trip back to see if we could get the percentage off.  The answer YES!!.  We went back, returned everything (learned we didn't have to take it all in with us...they just needed the receipt), then repurchased it all at the discounted price.  The grand total, you ask??  More than $50 dollars less than the day before, plus $40 in Kohl's cash. 

Monday we were supposed to head down to Cedar City and meet up with my son and his family.  While waiting for my daughter to arrive so we could all travel together, my 78 year old mother decides to climb a ladder and pick cherries from my sister's tree.  Not a very good idea.  While working on her second bowl she apparently fell off the top of the ladder.  We found her sitting on the ground confused and dazed and hurting.  She wanted to get up, but when she tried she immediately passed out and we dialed 911.  I do not have to say it was more than a little scary.  She was still insisting she is going to get to Cedar City in time for the first play that evening.   She did surprise the ER doc...the last thing he said as we left that evening was, "I am surprised."

We did get on the road Tuesday morning despite My mom's black and blue marks and bouts of nausea.  She is a strong willed woman! 
This helped the miles go by faster.

We made it!!  Yay!!  Going to see Shakespeare with my mother is like attending a college class.  She seriously just knows so much!  We were looking up The lost colony of Roanoke after watching the Tempest.    My sister, a history teacher, was helping us sort out the fiction from the non-fiction history, while watching King John.  Then it was Love's Labor Lost.  So funny and lots more play in words than I had realized.  We stayed an extra day to watch that one since we missed it due to our ER visit on Monday.  I did manage to get a shot of my mom conversing with William.

It has been a great vacation.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

The Passionate Pirate

I have barely started this book and I WANT TO BE A PIRATE!!  I love the introduction where Dave Burgess says, "pirates are adventurous, daring, willing to set forth in uncharted territories.  They refuse to conform to any society that stifles creativity and independence.  Although fiercely independent they travel with a diverse crew.  If you are willing to live by the code, commit to the voyage, and pull your share of the load, then you're free to set sail.  Pirates don't much care about public perception; they proudly fly their flags in defiance.  And besides everybody loves a pirate."  I want that to be me!

He tells us that we are, and need to be passionate...just like a pirate!  He asks us to think about what are our passions in content areas, professionally, and personally.  I've done some soul searching.  And I have come to the conclusion that the content I love to teach is mostly because of how I teach it.  I LOVE teaching about insects and butterflies.  But not particularly because I love butterflies and bugs, but because we get to go outside and interact with them.  I set up a butterfly house that the kids can walk into and be with the butterflies.  I love love love that!

I love books, but I don't necessarily love to teach reading.  I've been reading the Book Whisperer by Donalyn Miller too, and I am trying to be more like her in my approach to reading.  I have TONS of books in my classroom and I love to let the kids have free reading time.  They ask me, "Can I read ANYTHING? "  my answer YES!  I am passionate about that.

Personally, I am passionate about things in the natural world.  I love being outside: camping, hiking, anything to do with water or just sitting and listening to the birds and wind while the sun shines though the leaves (like right now with my laptop on my lap typing this post).  I also like artistic and creative things.  I am not very good at them...but I love creating all kinds of stuff.  Those are the two things I try to share the most with my students.  I take them outside or bring the outdoors in, and we do craftivities all the time (don't you love that word?). 
Maybe I am on my way to being a pirate after all.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

I am a Pirate Book that's a mouthful!

I love to read....I think everyone should love to read.  I love to get caught up in a great book and let the world spin around me while I stop time and let myself be transported to another place or time.  I am a pirate when it comes to reading!  But I hate teaching it.  I just want to read.  I just want to share with my students what I am reading.  I just want them to love it as much as I do.

This summer I am joining in two book studies:

Teach Like a Pirate by Bill Burgess....aaargh  I want to learn how to use his treasure map and be daring, adventurous, and willing to set forth in uncharted territories. 

The Book Whisperer by Donalyn help me create an atmosphere where even my Kinder Kids will feel like real readers and lovers of books.

Come along and join me on this daring adventure, we have all summer!

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Five for Friday...School's out!!

My Five for Friday post is actually a week late....This is what we did LAST week.

Monday, we let our Butterflies go.  They have been living in this outdoor screened tent for about two weeks (actually a week and a half, but over two weekends).  We have been coming to visit and play with them almost every day.

Tuesday, we walked to the park, had lunch, and played....just played.  We didn't ride the bus, insert Kindergarten sad face, we waked maybe three blocks.

Wednesday, was perhaps the best day of the week.  We created, with the help of our parents, our own field day.  We blew bubbles, had bouncy horse races, fished for rubber ducks, crawled an obstacle course, Threw pool noodle spears, learned to use tin can stilts, had sack races, threw a little frisbee golf....what did I miss....oh yeah spoon races and parachutes.

Thursday, we had our music program (sorry no pictures) and made cute watermelon books (also sorry no pics...but imagine cheap paper plates, colored green, folded in half, with red circles covered with seeds to color in for the cover and round red pages inside for writing down the books read all summer long) with our Reading Buddies. I promised both my students and their buddies a prize if the book is filled in when they come back to school!   
Thursday night good friends helped with the final prep of Hope King's cute cute cute Memory books made from paper bags.

I also put the finishing touches on these wonderful little recreations of my Kinder Team.  The Library Fox made these for me from a picture I sent her.  Aren't they cute!  And they look just like us!  I have the GREATest team.

Friday, was our last day...the time to say good-by.  I had their Brag Bags started and we continued to fill them as we looked over the pages we did the first week of school.  How they laughed at the way they drew themselves and wrote their name!

Then it was crazy packing...
I am moving across the hall to get this view! 

But first I had to do this....

And now summer is on!!!!