Sunday, December 29, 2013

2014 Resolutions and Goals!

I can't believe 2013 is coming to an end already! I'm linking up with Jessica from First Grade Nest for a fun Resolutions and Goals linky!

2014 should be exciting! A new (bigger) apartment with a sweet view! Hopefully a dog! Grad school will finish up! Here are my goals and resolutions for 2014:

 Get my masters!! 3 more classes plus a 3 credit language class! (I know that's 4 classes but it sounds better to me saying 3...) Then I am done!!  I'll be the first in my family with my Masters and that is a big deal to me :-D

Do more thoughtful blog posts.  I've been blogging since the end of July, doing lots of linkies, but now I want to start doing more meaningful blogging.

 Spend a couple hours a week creating stuff for TPT! I just started selling a couple months ago and will make about $10 by the end of the year! WOOT!! HAHA! Such a small amount but I am so excited about it!  Hopefully this next year will bring me some creativity and a little extra income.

Read more books for fun!  I know I will read at least 12 books this year because I am starting a book club with a friend of mine.  Our first book is The Book Thief (which I read a few years ago and can't remember) and I am very excited to have some fun with the girls and read some good books!

Get better at golf!! I started playing for real in 2013 with the hubby and I love it.  Such a frustrating and enjoyable sport.  I want to improve my short game (chipping and putting) and learn how to do low shots, because, to be honest, I end up in the tree a lot...

Europe! We are hoping to go in August for our 5 year anniversary!  Cross your fingers for me!

I hope I will be able to make all of this happen this coming year!  To go out with a bang I'm throwing a winter product giveaway!  Check it out HERE by Monday night! 

Hope this year brings you joy and happiness!  Head back to the First Grade Nest and link up with Jessica!

Friday, December 27, 2013

Winter Product Giveaway!

As a post Christmas treat I decided to host a little giveaway for you all!  One lucky winner will receive my 3 newest products, all of which are winter themed of course. Here they are:
Spell It! A Winter CVC Spelling Game.  You can check it out HERE!

Cold Weather Roll Say Keep.  You can check it out HERE!

Cold Weather Math Games.  You can check it out HERE!

 Fill out the rafflecopter below!  I will pick a winner on New Years Eve! (and then the products will go on sale for all those who didn't win) Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, December 20, 2013

Five for Friday- So Happy to be Done!

Hey everyone!  So excited to be linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching because that means it's Friday and school is out for winter break!!!

 We had a successful round of holiday rotations this week!!  You can read about it HERE.  I wanted to show you all a picture of the passport- so cute!

 I had a lot of fun making this Christmas Tree craft with ALL the kindergarteners during our rotations!!  You can get the directions for the craft HERE.

 Pajama day was today!  I was soooo comfy all day long.  Amazing!  And the kids were super adorable!

 We did a white elephant gift exchange this morning.  I always thought that you were supposed to give something not so good... But everything was really nice!  I got a cute little wine stopper and penguin wine glass markers.  Cute!

 Not gonna lie- I usually don't like the presents that students buy and I usually wish they hadn't bought anything at all! I got one earlier in the week that just went into the donation pile... BUT one of my kids bought me a beautiful blanket!  It just happens to be the colors that we use to decorate our living room! LOVE!

Happy Friday y'all and Happy Holidays!!!  Jump back over to Doodle Bugs Teaching!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Christmas Tree Craft

I just HAD to share this Christmas tree craft that I am using this week with all the kinders for our Holiday Rotations! 

Love those trees!!  I originally found them via Pinterest:  <a data-pin-do="embedPin" href=""></a>  The blog just happens to be in french, which I do NOT speak... BUT I was able to figure out how to make it.  Here are directions for you:

1. Cut different colored green construction paper into squares- my sides were 7 3/4" 

2. Fold the squares into triangles.

3.  Put one triangle inside the other so that the tips meet and the long edge is on the outside (does that make sense?)

4. Fold the outer square closed and staple along the edge to hold them together.

 5. Hole punch and tie a string/ribbon through the top of the tree.

6. Let the kids decorate!  I had them draw something important to them on one side and then glue stuff on the other side. 

7. Hot Glue a toilet paper roll inside the construction paper and VIOLA! You've got yourself a beautiful tree that can stand or hang!  ENJOY!!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

A Peek at my Super Fun Week!

I'm linking up with Deedee from Mrs. Wills Kindergarten for a peek at my super fun week!

We have 8 kindergartens at my school! 8! So many little ones running around :-)  Last year I thought it would be fun to rotate to each classroom for Earth day, doing a different activity in each room.  I remember doing that when I was in elementary school and always loved it.  Well, it was a HUGE success!! So we did it again at the end of the year, and now we are doing it again to celebrate the holiday season!! (besides, who wants to do actual teaching this week???) 

So, Monday and Tuesday will be normal days, plus a gingerbread man hunt on Tuesday afternoon!  The nice part is that last week we had 2 snow days, so all I did was move my plans over and I don't have to do more planning for this week.  You can check out those plans HERE.

Then on Wednesday and Thursday, the students will visit 6 classrooms, finishing up the last 2 on Friday morning.  We are super duper excited for this! The wonderful Kristin Orwig of Primary Ruled (check out her blog, she is doing a very cool blogging project with her kinders!) made passports for all 161 kiddos to use as they travel around the school to each room!  Each room has a stamp that they will put on their page to show they visited and learned about the holiday or tradition. Here is the breakdown for each room:

Me- Christmas trees around the world
Mrs. Carter- Sinterklass
Ms. Insani- Germany
Ms. Faulkner- Las Posadas- The Poinsettia
Ms. Stewart- American Quilts
Mrs. Wilson- Christmas Stockings
Ms. Orwig- Chinese New Year
Mrs. Krasley- Kwanzaa

I will be taking lots of pictures of their activities- or having my para take them since I will be in my room... BUT I look forward to sharing them with you!  Have a wonderful last week!!! Some people are already on break- can you believe it!!

Now jump back over to Mrs. Wills Kindergarten to see more fun weeks!

Friday, December 13, 2013

Five for Friday- A short, snowy week

Happy Friday! Linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching to share my Five for Friday!

 This week was all about the Gingerbread Man!  We even had some craft time! (mostly because my bulletin board still had apples on it!!!)

 I'm hosting a giveaway!!  You can read about it HERE!  You have to enter by tonight- Friday!
 Thanks to my 2 snow days I've had some time to create!!  New items will be up in the TPT store very soon and they will be great for winter!  Here are some pics:

Check back soon for details!

 We were finally able to make it outside for recess today!! The kids were super happy, especially because there was some snow left on the ground!

Hmmm... Nothing for #5 SO- I'm off to our staff Holiday Party!

Have a great weekend!  And jump back to Doodle Bugs for more random fives!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Christmas Questionnaire

I'm linking up with Michelle from Fabulous in First to fill out her Christmas Questionnaire!

Hot Chocolate or Egg Nog?
Hot chocolate for sure!  In fact, I just had some a little while ago!  Now, it has to be really chocolaty, not that watered down stuff from the tree farm...

Does Santa wrap presents or just put them under the tree?
WRAP!!  I love wrapping presents!  It's one of my favorite things about Christmas.  When I was younger I would always wrap one of my mom's presents with all of the scraps, so it would have like 4 different papers on it. So tacky, but it was always the best for some reason.  Last year I bought wrapping paper with glitter- BIG MISTAKE! It got everywhere! Never again, friends, never again.

Colored light or white?
White on the tree.  Colored lights on the house :-)  I always loved those old school big colored lights on the outside.

When do you decorate?
 The weekend after Thanksgiving!  I love putting everything out.  Waiting for the day we own our own house so that I don't have to take EVERYTHING out of our storage closet to get the christmas decorations out...

Real or fake tree?
REAL!  Having a fake tree is sacrilegious to me!  We even get a real one here in DC.  It;s pre-cut, but it does the job:

What tops your tree?
 Nothing.  But the funniest part is that EVERY year when we pick out our tree my husband asks if we'll have enough room for the topper and EVERY year I tell him we don't have one!

Favorite Christmas memories or traditions?
 As a child I would help with every step of the tree.  I would help my mom with the lights, help my dad and sister with the bulbs, and help my dad with the beads.  I was the only one who did it all :-)

Favorite gift as a child?
 Hmmm...  I remember getting out Barbie Dream House.  That was pretty amazing!

Do you prefer giving or receiving?
 While I love getting gifts, I enjoy giving them even more, especially as I've gotten older.  Nothing like seeing the happiness you cause.

What is your favorite Christmas song?
 Oh Holy Night- Celine Dion.  Girlfriend breaks it DOWN!  I will turn the volume up all the way in the car.

Candy Canes?
 Of course!!

Favorite Christmas movie? 
Santa Clause The Movie.  Remember this??
I watch it every year!  And my dad usually falls asleep every year ;-)

Do you shop online or in stores?
 A mixture of both.  I know the mall is crazy, but I love going for the Christmasy feel!

Photo cards, letters or store bought cards?
Either photo cards or store bought.  People know what we've been doing all year because of facebook, so not letter from the VanKuikens!

Thanks for hosting Michelle!!   


Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Snow Day Giveaway!

Happy Snow Day #2 Friends!  
"Snowmageddon" was my first winter here.  It was AMAZING!! Trust me, this is no snowmageddon.
We have had some "inclement weather" here in the DC area the last two days and have sadly used up BOTH of our allotted snow days for the year already! YIKES! Yesterday was unnecessary- should have just been a 2 hour delay, BUT I did get to do some Christmas shopping, so it all worked out I guess.  Today we have a threat of 3-5 inches of snow!  BUT here in DC it's just a slushy mess, no accumulation. (which I have to say is VERY sad because I LOVE LOVE LOVE snow!)

There has been FAR too much tv watching the last 2 days, but I did get to watch Home Alone 1 and 2, which was great!  
That's my childhood right there.  They are also my husband's favorite Christmas movies!  So, in honor of him, I have a little giveaway planned- but it will take some creativity!!  The winner will get to choose any item from my TPT store for free!! You can check out my TPT store HERE.  Now, I know what you're thinking- "But Heather, you barely have anything in your store!" I know, I know...  BUT, with the snow days I have started creating things for winter- SO you won't have to choose right away- let me put those up first, then you can choose :-) 

Here's what you have to do:
 Leave a comment telling how you would catch the crooks as they tried to rob your house! 
I will read the entries to my husband and he will pick the winner!  You have until Friday night at midnight to leave your comment, I will let you know the winner on Saturday!  Good luck and I can't wait to read what you come up with!