An 'ugly' Christmas like no other.

Not sure how it is possible, but the Christmas season is probably one of the best feelings in the world! - Yes, a happy, cozy warm feeling :) And sadly...ugh... it has already come to an end.  However,  I refuse to take down my tree, even though Charley has taken down the majority of the bottom ornaments for me.  I'm just not ready to part with the coziness of it all yet.

BUT now that the last minute shopping is over and there are no more cookies to be baked, I FINALLY have time to sit and take a breather. - Unless I hear ornaments shattering, in which case this will be a short post. 

The days between Thanksgiving and Christmas are some of the most exciting days of the year for me! ESPECIALLY working in an elementary school.  I love hearing about what the students' pesky little elves are up to on their shelves, and what they hope to get from Santa.   Just like every other year my students and I decorate our classroom Christmas tree, upon returning from Thanksgiving break.  We make our own ornaments for our tree, which just so happened to be Pinterest inspired this year.   - Not quite sure how I ever survived without "Pinning!" The students and I made snowflake ornaments out of pasta! - Super cute idea that they loved, and a super cute glitter mess that they made. 

By December 2nd we were more than ready for the season, until the life skills teacher down the hall approached me with one of the most awesome ideas to add to the excitement of the season...

The 1st Floor Ugly Sweater Decorating Contest!

It took just about everything I had to contain my excitement.  My mornings are consumed with inclusion teaching on the third floor.  When I told my afternoon pull-out students what an Ugly Christmas Sweater was and that they would be participating, I could see their eyes get huge and the wheels inside their heads start moving! They had so many ideas as to how they were going to make their sweater ugly.  The contest was being held on our floor only.  Each student on the first floor received a "sweater" worksheet, provided by the life skills teacher.  I copied my students' sweaters onto white construction paper to be a little more heavy duty, to hold all their ugliness.  I went through my cabinets finding any and everything they would be able to use.  The finished sweaters were displayed in the cafeteria, to showoff all of their ugliness. They turned out SO ugly!  I loved them all.  What do you think?!

...And of course I had to make one too:)

Well, a successful few minutes of no ornaments breaking!  I'm sure it is because a certain dog is napping:)

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday and will have an amazing new year!

Fall is my favorite color.

I have an incredibly strange fascination with fall.  The chilly football weather, the boots and sweaters, the apple cider, just the coziness of it all ...and of course pumpkin everything:)  BUT I'd have to say I'm the most fascinated with the colors - oranges, reds, greens, yellows, browns, ALL of them!  From my home doorstep, to my students' Math Warm-Up binders, I just LOVE seeing the colors of fall everywhere!  It's almost a bit obsessive.

Despite all of my fall excitement, it is unfortunate I can't say the same for Charley.  The time change is STILL throwing him off.  The poor little guy associates the darkness outside with going "night-night" and is laying in his bed around 6pm. HOWEVER, he does enjoy strolling through the crunchy leaves... but don't we all?!


I *pinky promise* I love my job!

... but as I write this blog post, I can't help but to be a little excited over another snow day! There's just something about watching television at night patiently waiting for my school to be listed, on the bottom two inches of the screen, telling me we're cancelled! I can't even begin to explain the feeling I get knowing that I can stay up a little later to watch all the shows I normally miss! :)

I know... I know... this just means we have to make it up when the weather is nice.  OH WELL!

Of course Charley is excited I get to be home with him today.  Poor lil guy is not digging this snow, or the -2 degree weather. He and I actually have a laundry list of things we need to get accomplished.  We were snowed in this weekend and didn't get a lot done, but I'll take riding snowmobiles over grocery shopping any day!

My List...
finish end of nine weeks progress reports
work on my blog
grocery shop
grab lunch with my mom
upload my newest TpT products
make dinner
paint my nails
finish season one of Sons of Anarchy

Charley's List..
quick bathroom walk
work on his chew toy
(you get the picture)

Off too cross more off our lists. Have a great day everyone! Be sure to stop by later today to see my newest TpT uploads!:)

Charley's Classroom


Brr! Staying In & Snuggling Up!

It's a snow day today for schools in southwestern PA, and I must admit... I STILL get excited about them just as much as I did when I was a little kid:)  Charley and I are spending our snow day enjoying some much needed snuggle time on the couch watching the snow fall, catching up on our DVR recordings, and drinking tea from one of my most favorite mugs - I'm drinking the tea, however I'm sure Charley would enjoy it equally as much:) We have zero desire to move! But I am wondering, what do other teachers do on snow days? I can't imagine being the only one who enjoys being lazy for a few hours! I don't get this luxury on the weekends. 

Hope everyone is having a wonderful Tuesday & if you're in this "Polar Vortex," just like we are, stay warm!

Charley's Classroom

Happy New Year!... nearly three weeks later:)

Out of all the resolutions I have for 2014, and I have quite a few, I hope blogging is the one I stick to the most! 2013 was a heck of a year for me, BUT I have come out of it feeling better about myself than I ever have before. 

So, you might be wondering "why blogging?" Well here's my story as to how this all got started...

At the start of this current school year in August, when things are always the craziest, my teacher friend/coworker Joey Udovich sent me one of her AMAZING binders she creates and sales on TpT - Teachers Pay Teachers for those of you who have never heard of this wonderful site before. I loved it and COULD NOT wait to use it. Once I got my new binder all set up and ready for the year, I put it next to my IEP binder I made for myself at the beginning of the 2012 school year... how pathetic mine looked.  I was determined to make mine look as nice as I could compared to hers – which would be no easy task because Joey is insanely talented and creative. With a little help from notes I took at a Powerpoint class a few months prior to this task I was trying to conquer, as well as tips and tricks from Joey, I made my very own IEP Meetings Binder! It only took me about a week *sigh* but it was so worth it.

(Check out “Inside the Classroom” for pictures of my IEP Meetings Binder and how I use it.)

Creating this IEP binder of mine really got my creative juices flowing.  I wanted… NEEDED to make a binder in color, too!  In a conversation with my mom one day, while I was telling her about this IEP binder I had just created, she suggested that if it worked for me why don’t I upload it to TpT for other teachers, too – my mom is a retired special education teacher who had worked with Joey also, so she was familiar with TpT.  And so that’s how it all started. I uploaded my first three binders in December and another one a few days ago! 

I can't give a HUGE enough thank you to Joey Udovich for introducing me to ALL of this – creating teaching resources, TpT, blogging, and so much more. I can’t say enough about the wonderful teaching resources she creates… Check it out:)

I’m overly excited to see what this year has in store for me!
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