Monday, August 12, 2013

back to school…here we come

I finally almost have my classroom ready for kids to arrive. There’s always a never ending to-do list. But the most important things are complete. Here’s a little peek at my classroom:

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I decided to go with a “Rockstar” them this year. I thought it would be fun for boys and girls and not too juvenile for 3rd graders. This is outside of my classroom.

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This is my whole group area for mini-lessons and class meetings.

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I gave this lamp a quick makeover this summer. I spray painted the base with paint I had in the shed. And covered the shade with fabric left over from Bri’s grad party.

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This is my behavior chart. The students move up or down depending on their behavior. In the past I used clothespins but decided to try it with magnets instead. If the kids continue to move up the chart, they can go “off the chart”. I have a star for them to autograph when the go off the chart.

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This is my embarrassingly lame bulletin board. Once we get some cute artwork complete, I’ll hang it here.

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This will be for our birthdays. I’ll take a group picture for each month and hang on the poster. It was a pain to make and I’m a bit disappointed in how it turned out. Hopefully the kids’ pictures will “cuten” it up!

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Ignore the piles!

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That pretty much covers my classroom tour. I may have a few more pictures in another day or so.


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Nate’s all set for school with some brand-new undershirts. His Nana and Papa Bowman bought him these for his birthday, but they were a bit small. After lots of trouble, she was able to get them exchanged and they just came in today. They are basically a onesie, which Nate needs to keep his pants up. But a onesie makes tube feeding difficult, so they have little “tummy tunnels” for easier access. I just had to iron on the patch and cut out the opening on the shirt.

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It’s the little things, like onesies for big kids, that make life so much easier for life with Nate!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

another summer under my belt

Another summer has come to a screeching halt. It was a good one. We had a great family vacation. And a weekend get-away. Plenty of rain. Several days at the pool. No complaints from me.

Now it’s time to start another school year. One filled with milestones for my girls! Bri will start college a week from tomorrow. She’s living at home and going to Butler Community College, following in her mama’s footsteps. Allison starts her senior year on Friday. And anyone who's talked to Delaney today knows she starts kindergarten in FIVE DAYS! Tomorrow she’ll tell everyone she knows that she starts kindergarten in FOUR DAYS! I’ve never seen a kid so excited for school to start. She has picked out her outfit for the first day. She has put in her request for her cold lunch on the first day. She’s circled the menu items on the hot lunch that she wants to eat. I just hope this love of school and learning continues for her.

Jeremy starts teaching on Wednesday. Nate starts 4th grade on Thursday. And I start my 16th year of teaching on Thursday. It will be a busy week. And if this year is anything like last year, it will be over in a blink of an eye.

Happy New School Year to my teacher friends. Hope it’s a great one!!

Friday, August 9, 2013

pizza, bugs & games

With Delaney having a mom and a dad who are also teachers, you might think we do educational things with her all the time. If you think that, you’d be quite wrong. We do, however, have this great thing called Netflix Instant Streaming and we let Delaney watch it as much as she wants (which is really less than we’d like her to watch it). One of her favorite shows is Caillou. If you aren’t familiar with Caillou, it’s a cartoon about a little boy with an annoying whiny voice. His family apparently does lots of cool things with him and Delaney has pretty much learned everything she knows from watching Caillou.

One day she asked if we could make our own pizzas for dinner. As you’ve probably figured out by now, Caillou’s family did this. So we decided that maybe she could have some life experiences of her own and not just live vicariously through Caillou.

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I used Rhode’s dinner rolls for the crust. Let them thaw (not rise). Put lots of olive oil on the baking sheet and roll out the dough. Top with your choice of toppings.

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She made her own pizza. She only wanted mushrooms and cheese for her toppings.

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Bake at 400 for about 10 minutes. I prefer a little more cheese on my pizza. Thanks Caillou for the easy and cheap dinner idea!


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It wouldn’t be summer without catching some lightning bugs (or fireflies, depending on what part of the country you live). Plus it was on our summer list. So we had to do it!

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Another thing on our summer list was “family game night.” Well, half of our family participated anyway. We played Monopoly (she wasn’t really a fan), Spot It (that’s a new one for us…fun but kind of hard for Delaney) and Old Maid (she’s a pro at that one!)

Summer is winding down. Jeremy is already back at work. I’ve been up at the school working but don’t go back officially until Monday.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

girls’ day out

I spent the past week gathering and tagging the kids’ old clothes in preparation for a consignment sale. The beauty of these sales is that I can make what I would normally make at a garage sale and I don’t have to sweat in my garage all weekend! And I can buy name-brand clothes and toys for a fraction of their retail cost.

I have purchased pretty much all of Delaney’s clothes second hand at consignment sales or garage sales. I also graciously accept hand-me-downs. Shopping isn’t something Delaney has experienced a whole lot of. Well one rainy day a week or so ago, I decided to take Delaney to the mall to spend her Build-A-Bear gift card that she had gotten for her birthday. Then we had a pretzel (can’t go to the mall without having a pretzel from Auntie Anne’s). And then at the last minute I decided to splurge on a brand new outfit for her for her first day of school. Von Maur always has awesome sales and I only shop those racks. Delaney was so sweet. When we had found several possibilities, she asked, “Can I go to the dressing room and try them on like you did for Bri’s graduation party?” Of course I let her and she loved trying on each outfit and checking it out in the mirror.

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Here’s the new outfit for her bear. Complete with high heel shoes and a sparkly purse. Life doesn’t get much better than this when you’re 5 years old!!

Friday, August 2, 2013


I know I’ve mentioned all of Delaney’s quirky fears (dogs, china dolls, blood…) Well we can add “traveling dinosaur exhibit” to that list.

We decided to surprise Delaney with a last minute trip to Exploration Place. She goes there quite frequently with her Nana and Papa and she loves it. But that was before the Dinosaurs invaded it!

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It was a very cool exhibit. They had actual fossils found in Kansas. You could visit with a paleontologist. And there were roaring, moving dinosaurs throughout. I could’ve taken some fabulous pictures, except I was carrying a terrified and crying 5 year old through the whole dang thing!! We really should’ve known better.

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But once we left the dinosaurs, she had a ball!!

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If you live in Wichita, or nearby, you really need to see the dinosaur exhibit. It’s here until September. But please don’t invite Delaney to go with you. For your sake!!!