Monday, March 3, 2014

No Fail Teacher Gift: Classroom Emergency/Survival Kit


I've been a class room mom for several years now, and have had to come up with loads of different teacher gift ideas for various times throughout the school year. I've learned the best gifts are either useful items that they need or special indulgences. So far, the Classroom Emergency/Survival Kit is my favorite go to gift for any teacher.

What I really love about it is how many different things you can fill it with, and all of the different spending ranges it can support! I look for cute fabric toiletry kits (like the one above) with multiple pockets to use.

A basic kit is a great birthday gift from the class. Here's what I usually include:

  • chapstick
  • pain reliever
  • hand cream
  • gum/breath freshener
  • tea/instant coffee
  • energy bar/granola bar
  • chocolate
  • bandaids
  • safety pins
  • pen/paper
  • hand wipes/sanitizer
  • travel size deodorant
  • tissues
If you want to kick it up a notch for a larger class gift, throw in a few gift cards to school supply/craft stores the local grocery store, coffee shop, gas station, whatever. 

It's almost guaranteed to be a well loved gift!


Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Cold Weather Fun: Hanging Ice Ornaments


This week, it seems pretty much the whole country is being affected by an arctic air blast...here in Birmingham, AL we woke up to a bitter 8 degrees outside. Extreme for some, I however grew up in New England, and even spent several years living in one of the great, lake effect snow areas of our country: Buffalo, NY. So, I typically don't mind the cold, except of course, when it means my kiddos can't get much outside play time.

When Juliana got home after school yesterday, my short list of non-TV activities ran out quickly (we're just coming off of a two week winter break, so I've used up a lot of my stash of creativity with the kids!). But then I thought of this cool idea to do something fun with the cold weather: Hanging Ice Ornaments!

They were super easy to make, and for Juliana it was extra fun because she could design them using (mostly) whatever supplies she wanted. I'll admit, I even got into it a bit too.

Here's what we used to make them:
  1. pie plates and Bundt pan
  2. water
  3. food coloring
  4. glitter
  5. beads
  6. cranberries
  7. string or ribbon for hanging
Simply pour water into your plates (or whatever other mold you wish to use) and have fun adding color and more to it!




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Monday, January 6, 2014

Inspiration Found: Connecting Faith with Social Justice, the Story of Sister Simone Campbell & Obamacare

This is such an inspiring story about faith being connected to social justice. (I think I've found a new personal hero in Sister Simone Campbell!).

From the podcast "The Good Fight" with Ben Wikler:

"In the final days before the bill passed, who saved Obamacare? Catholic nuns. Sister Simone Campbell—one of the most charming, utterly down-to-earth, and profoundly committed people I've ever met—explains why. And in the process, she tells her own fascinating story, from an anti-segregation sit-in where, as a teenager, she decided to take her vows, all the way to the present and her delight in the joyous tone set by Pope Francis. If you're glad that Obamacare is finally here—that millions of Americans are, at last, covered by health insurance—then you'll love this mini, Christmas-inspired episode of The Good Fight."




Tuesday, December 17, 2013

A Few Fun Elf Ideas

I love the whole idea behind the Christmas Elves, but this year, I was feeling a little bit dry of creativity right from the get go...not the best sign. But every now and then we have a few extra fun elf nights like these:

"Worst Cookies EVER!" Dog treats :)

Toasting Marshmallows!

Getting into the Advent Calendar

No explanation needed :)

Dare devil elves preparing to jump over the tied up the snowman! (This is what happens when the husband is in charge of elfing! 

Monday, December 10, 2012

Because I don't want to forget:



This one is awesome: Yesterday we overheard Nate telling Juliana that when you get to Heaven there is a portal back to Earth where you get to come back here and be a new, different baby again, which he said, means you get to live LOTS and lots of lives! Woah! I asked him where he heard that and he said, no where. I came up with it on my own. I wasn't really sure what to say or think, but I thought that was pretty awesome that he came up with it on his own.

Tonight, Jules and I had some one on one time when Nate and his dad were at Cub Scouts. While we ate dinner together she started to get really upset, and when I asked her why she was so sad, she answered, because I don't want you to die! Oh no. I've been dreading this talk.

I explained that hopefully, I still have many, many (many!) years to live, and that we should focus on spending lots of time together making happy memories.


Then I made the mistake of telling her that when she's a teenager, she'll probably want nothing to do with me! She promised to always want to spend time with me, (and I promised to hold her to it!). Then she she started talking about when she is older and has a job making cups and how she will still want me to make her dinner and do her laundry, etc....

WAIT a minute back up, I said! No, I was not upset about her wanting me to still cook her dinner and do her laundry when she's a grown woman (although I'll probably rethink that later on), but what is this about a job making cups?!!!

Well, mom, she said, you know, I want to be able to make you at least 100 mugs that say 'I love you' on them so you'll always know that I love you.

Well then world, welcome the next future cup maker, Juliana!!

Ahhhh, it feels good to be writing here again!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Life is an Opportunity: Words by Mother Teresa

“Life is an opportunity, benefit from it. Life is beauty, admire it. Life is a dream, realize it. Life is a challenge, meet it. Life is a duty, complete it. Life is a game, play it. Life is a promise, fulfill it. Life is sorrow, overcome it. Life is a song, sing it. Life is a struggle, accept it. Life is a tragedy, confront it. Life is an adventure, dare it. Life is luck, make it. Life is too precious, do not destroy it. Life is life, fight for it.” 


― Mother Teresa