Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Hubby's 30th Birthday!

Good thing I'm not 30 yet (hee, hee)!  No... but really... I'm not thirty, my husband is!  His birthday fell on Thanksgiving Day this year!  If you ask me, that stinks.  You kind of get cheated out of a real birthday celebration.

Anyway, we couldn't go all out for his big 30th birthday this year because of Thanksgiving.  But one of his friends and I surprised him with a weekend trip to Nashville a few weeks ago... he LOVES country music.  It was A LOT of fun!

We also went out the night before his birthday with some friends.  Then I made sure to make Thanksgiving Day a little extra special since it was also his birthday.  I found this great idea on Pinterest so I created my own version with Blow Pops.

I had some balloons inflated and put them up around our house.  And I bought a fancy shmancy cake!  I never do that!  I usually just make one.  His favorite is red velvet.  I LOVE all things chocolate and cake.... except for red velvet.  Eww.  But it's his favorite and his family's favorite so it worked out... for them at least :).

I hope you all had a fabulous Thanksgiving!  Man, did it make it hard going back to school after that long weekend though.  I am really counting down the days until Christmas break now! :)

Monday, November 19, 2012

November Monday Made It... Finally

I am linking up with Tara's Monthly Monday Made It for November.  Finally.

Project #1 Mantle Decor

I of course got inspiration for this on Pinterest.  I bought the glasses and candles at the dollar store, popcorn kernels at the grocery store, and the leaves at a local craft store.  I already had the twine.

It was super easy to make.  I put some popcorn kernels in the glasses, then placed a candle in each one. Then I filled the glasses with more popcorn kernels to cover the sides of the candles.  I used the twine to tie each the letters around the glasses.  I figure I can use the glasses for pretty much any holiday!

Project #2 Thanksgiving Wreath

Once again I got inspiration from Pinterest for this wreath.  It came out OK, but I want to make a better one next year.  I wanted it to be bigger, it looks a little small... but oh well.  I used foam board, leaves, a wooden letter, paint, and my hot glue gun.

Project 3# Broccoli Cheddar Soup

Mmmm.  I've made this before, but want to share to the recipe with you all.
I found the original recipe here.

1 3/4 cups chicken broth
1 small onion (although I've made it without)
1/3 cup flour
1/4 cup butter
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups milk
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup shredded swiss cheese (also made without)
3 cups chopped, lightly steamed broccoli

Simmer chicken broth and diced onion for 15 min in a small covered saucepan.  During this time, heat milk in the microwave for 2 minutes.  Heat the butter in a separate saucepan.  Add the flour, salt, and pepper.  Cook together for 2 minutes while stirring.  Add warmed milk and continue to stir on medium heat for 8 minutes or until soup starts to thicken.  Add warmed chicken broth, continue to stir.  Add cheese and stir until well blended.  Add chopped steamed broccoli.  Viola!  You can eat immediately or let it thicken up.  Yum!

Be sure to link up with 4th Grade Frolics or at least go check out November's projects!


Saturday, November 17, 2012

Brain Breaks!

What am I doing on a Saturday night you ask?  Blogging.  That's what I'm doing this fine Saturday night.  The hubby is at a softball tournament (in November!) so I'm catching up on my housework and blogging duties.

This year I started using Brain Breaks in my classroom and I love them!  More importantly my students LOVE them!  I made my Brain Break sticks this summer and wrote about them a little bit here.

I used craft sticks and painted half of the front and back of each one with green paint.  After they dried, I taped the words on each one.  Pretty easy.  I have them stored in a cup in my classroom.  Any time that my students need a break, have been sitting too long, or we have a few extra minutes I grab a stick from our Brain Breaks cup.  Once we complete it, I put it back in the cup upside down (hence the paint on one end).  That way we aren't picking the same Brain Break over and over.

There are a lot of Brain Break ideas out there.  I am borrowing some ideas and using some of my own.  These are the ones I have:
Line Up In Order
10 Jumping Jacks
Jog In Place
Three High-Fives
I Spy
10 Cherry Pickers
The Wave
Spin 3 Times
Hot Potato
Dance Party
Wax Museum
Hot Foot
Seat Switch
Head, Shoulders, Knees & Toes

My students' favorites by far are Dance Party and Seat Switch.  For Dance Party I just play a song from my Kidz Bop CD and my students can dance around the classroom.  Of course there's usually one or two students who just don't feel comfortable dancing.  When we pick Seat Switch I call out "Seat Switch" and the students get up and find another student's seat to sit in, kind of like musical chairs.  We do it about three times.

Here are some pictures of my students in action!  Excuse the freaky blurred faces, I want to protect my kiddos' identities.

Wax Museum
Dance Party
Hot Potato
The Wave
Seat Switch


Tuesday, November 6, 2012

I Voted, Did You?

I have to start this post by admitting I've been a horrible blogger this last month.  Yep.  Worst blogger ever... right here!  Ugh... I've just had some serious stressors this year and it's only November!

Anyways, yes I did vote today.  Did you?  Did your kiddos "vote"?  I think it's definitely fun to teach about voting during an election year.  I didn't spend a ton of time discussing voting, but I do want to share what I did in my classroom.  I know, not too much help now but I like to share!

We watched a short video on BrainPop about voting.  My school has a subscription, but I think this video was actually a free one.  If you don't know about BrainPop, you are missing out!  The kids LOVE these videos!

 I read aloud the three above books, Duck for President, Grace for President, and My Teacher for President.  I read them to my students on different days and we discussed why each character would or would not make a good president.   I got this idea from The First Grade Parade.

After some good discussion, my students voted which "character" would be the best President.  I really liked the ballot Mrs. Carroll had, so I made one that was similar.

Of course I had one student vote for Duck... not a surprise coming from this student.  There were also a few students that voted for Grace.  They seemed to really like Grace.  The majority voted for "My Teacher."

My school participates in KidsVote, so my students also voted on school items in the computer lab.

OK, back to watching the election results.
I promise to be a better blogger this month! :)