Five for Friday

It's Five for Friday!  ON a Friday!  

We all know I'm actually posting it on a Friday because I haven't been working and I am well rested and not my usual Harried Exhausted Friday Teacher Self Who Just Needs A Glass of Wine And Maybe A Bubble Bath And Falls Asleep Before 8:30PM On The Couch.


Steve tried to watch it with me when it first aired and then decided he didn't like it so it was just one of "my shows" each week and I would watch it by myself in bed, with candy most likely, or maybe ice cream.  

When it ended, I was sad.  THO THAD.

So I started to watch it all over again, from the beginning, and Steve wandered in one day, and sat down, and started asking questions, and the next thing I knew, I had him hooked.

We're hooked.

For the first four days of my recovery, I took Advil, iced my cheek off and on, slept, and watched this show.  I think we made it through the first two seasons in two and a half days.

Don't judge.  I really couldn't do anything else - reading or working on my computer made me feel nauseous.

Steve is not a fan at all of the character Amber on the show and will sometimes mute her.  He also doesn't understand how this family talks all at the same time and says it sounds just like my family.  I said that's because this show is practically real life and that's why it's so dang good!

Really.  Even the second time around.

Once I could read without feeling sick, I read this book.  In a day and a half or thereabouts.


If you liked Gone Girl (and how can you really like Gone Girl, it's so disturbing, but it was so good), you will like this book.  It's completely different, but suspenseful like Gone Girl, and I can't explain it, but you have to read it.


I texted a couple of friends who happen to enjoy my book picks (I think it's my second calling behind my first calling of eating chocolate and drinking wine and having coffee and watching Parenthood) and told them to read it so we could talk about it.  I need to talk about this book with someone.

One of my friends downloaded it right away and texted me the next night to say she couldn't put it down and she was staying up way past her bedtime.  I told her to stop texting me and to keep reading.  HURRY UP, I said!

Get it.  Now.

I got a special delivery this week from my girlfriends at school.  They did a ding dong ditch and left this basket full of goodies for me on the porch.  

I have the best girlfriends!

The basket was filled with chick flick DVDs, two pairs of pj bottoms, a bunch of cozy Aloe infused socks (I can't explain these socks but oh my word, get some), fun magazines, Giuliana Rancic's new book, Bath and Body stuff, and two bottles of wine.

I haven't cried at all through this whole ordeal, but this basket, and the love that came with it, made me want to have a big ole sob fest.  I didn't.  But I wanted to.

Aren't girlfriends the best? 

Thank you, girls!!!!!!!  

Awww.  This girl.  Miss Murphie.  She has been extra sweet and gentle with me.  She totally knew something was up (I'm not making that up, it's true, she is a genius dog, what can I say) and we had a lot of cuddle time this week.  

I took this picture because her front paw is over there on the left side of her face and her back paw is the one to the right of her face.  But they kind of look connected . . . and she was covered up with a blanket because we're both ridiculous so I had to document it.

I had a follow up with the oral surgeon yesterday.  You might remember that I said he is extremely handsome . . . well, he called me a young girl with young tissue and gave me an A for all of my after care so it was a wonderful visit even though he sort of hurt me while I was there.  I forgave him.  Because he was also extremely concerned that I was getting enough to eat and worried that I'd lost too much weight.

Although, what he really said was, "You haven't lost too much weight, have you?" which, loosely translated, means "You look like a supermodel."

Anyways, I got the green light to resume all normal activity (slowly, take it easy, listen to your body) so I promptly drove to school to see what was what.

School had already dismissed so I just saw a couple of people (who also thought I looked great . . . I think showering and brushing my teeth and wearing a bra had something to do with it) and kind of looked over what my class had been doing and then sort of prepped for next week.

And I saw our plants.


I blogged about how I plant with 32 kids in under 30 minutes in this post {HERE} and how I always use the same kind of seeds . . . and how they always grow . . . 

Well, here's the proof.

Some of the stems are so tall that they are falling over.  Literally falling over.  



And that was my week.

A whole lotta nothing . . . Steve and I are going out for dinner tonight and I'm going to try to eat actual food!  I am so excited!  And then tomorrow I get to have breakfast (coffee and a donut!) and an early movie with a girlfriend . . . it's like I'm back in the land of the living and there is no stopping me now!!





Okay, this will be a short post . . . maybe for for the first time ever in the history of this blog!  

I think it's because I've been stuck at home and I have nothing new to say.

Except that I washed my hair today.  I have no one to show it to, but it's squeaky clean.


Here are the winners of my Partner Plays for Kinder Kids {End of the Year edition}!

Congratulations to:

Angel Chism
A. Hunt
Brittani Black!!

Be sure to check your email!

Have a great night, everyone!  :)


Reader's Theater {End of the Year}

Day 6.

Day 6 of healing and of going nowhere but upstairs, downstairs, and the backyard.

I started feeling like a human being yesterday so that's good, considering I am one.  My face might not look like one, but I think it's coming along, too.  I feel like I'm less swollen and Steve swears that I'm less swollen, but he won't exactly look me in the eye when he says that either.  

That could mean that he is lying and/or it's hard to look at me.


In sickness and in health, right?

In the meantime, before all this happened, I was able to post my Reader's Theater for Kinder Kids {End of the Year} edition.  Yes, end of the year.  The last time I looked, we had about six weeks left.  There's a countdown on the whiteboard in our lounge.  People keep saying it's so crazy this time of the year, sorry to ask this, but could you . . . so I've decided that could mean only one thing.

It is, in fact, the end of the year, folks.

I have a couple of friends in my class who still need this level and we will be using them in our small group time together.  And by small group, I mean me and these two kids while the other thirty kids run amuck.

But my other thirty kids are so sweet about the fact that these two kids struggle in reading that they're all willing to partner up with them and help them during centers time.  Okay, maybe not all of them -- you know I have one or two smarty pants kids who can't bring themselves to read an easy play and tell me all the time that my Advanced plays should be longer and have bigger words and longer parts, but stillmost of my kids don't mind at all.

Which makes me think I'm going to miss my class.  But that could also be due to the fact that I have been at home and not with them so I am feeling nostalgic instead of my kids are driving me crazy, I found band-aid trash on the floor again!  AGAIN, I said!

Anywho, here's a glimpse into the pack:

I know my two little ones are going to love this one and want to take turns being the dog so they can yell out, "Home run!"  I really wanted it to say, "Go Dodgers!" but I didn't know if that would go over very well with everyone.  

I have a lot of Angels (Angel? Angel's?  How should I know?) fans in my classroom.

I don't know how it happened because I remember that I specifically said that all my kids needed to be Dodger fans when I signed my contract years ago, and then every year I end up with a class divided.  And it's not half and half, either.  Some kids don't even care, if you can believe it!

I will probably use this pack at the beginning of next year, too.  I think it will be perfect for easing my first graders into Reader's Theater while we focus on sight words and fluency.

I gave a few of these away on my Facebook page and I thought I'd give away a few here.  

So . . . if you'd like the chance to win your own copy, just leave a comment on this post with your email address and I'll pick a winner tomorrow!  :)

Go Dodgers!!!


Five for Nothing

Well, it's not Five for Friday or Five for Fraturday.

It's Five for Nothing.

Because I've got nothing.

In fact, I have done nothing for the past two days.

I had major oral surgery on Thursday and I've pretty much slept away the last two days.  

Remember back when I discovered that I had osteoporosis?  Well, it turns out I also have significant bone loss in my teeth, as well.  Which is not good, considering you need bone and roots to hold your teeth inside your head.  So after a minor freak out, (meaning tears in yet another dentist's office) I was referred to an amazing oral surgeon.

And . . . BONUS . . . this oral surgeon guy is extremely handsome.  Like, movie star handsome.  I can't form sentences when I am around him.  Which is okay because mostly I'm just trying not to cry when I'm around him.  When we first met with him, Steve said, "I had no idea this guy would be on the cover of People's Most Beautiful Oral Surgeon Edition."  And then he said something along the lines of there's no way you're going to be alone with him when he puts you under or some other macho husband thing to say when the oral surgeon putting you under looks like the oral surgeon I have.

Anywho, my oral surgeon said he would be taking bone from my jaw and grafting it to other sites and that I needed to take at least an entire week off of school.

I said, What?  Why?

He said, Well, unless you want to scare your first graders . . . 

I immediately thought two things:  

1.  Awwww!  He remembered what grade I teach!!  (like a schoolgirl with a crush except that I am happily married)

2.  NO!  NO NO NO!  A WEEK?!

I said, Scare my first graders?  What do you mean?

He said, You will be in a lot of pain and have swelling and bruising and maybe black eyes.  You will feel like I hit you over the head with a brick.  I'm not gonna sugarcoat it.

Oh.  Well.  I guess not.  Let's not sugarcoat it.  Geesh.  Give it to me straight is what I always say.

So I said, indignantly, Well, I can't take off more than four days in a row without a doctor's note!!! 

To which he replied, Kristin, I am a doctor.

Again, I thought two things.

1.  He knows my name!!

2.  Note to self:  oral surgeons are doctors.  Oops.

So here I am.

I look like a chipmunk.  Or half a chipmunk.  I am sore and swollen and starting to bruise on one side.  Advil and ice packs are my best friends at the moment, along with sleep.

I tried to take some sort of narcotic (prescribed, not from the black market, don't worry) and I only took half, but I hated the way it made me feel so I told Steve no more.  No more, I mumbled.  Because I can't actually talk.

Really.  They said talk as little as possible and don't smile.

I said inside my head YOU ARE TORTURING ME!  LITERALLY!

Meanwhile, Kerry said her husband might sign her up for this surgery . . . we're big talkers in my family.

I am on a liquid diet which is actually okay right now because I'm not hungry.  I am just drinking some sort of Odwalla Protein shake that tastes a lot like chocolate milk, but somehow fills me up. 

I know.  I'm not hungry.  

This is really serious, guys.

I am off all this coming week and can't believe it.  I have never done anything like this ever in my entire career.  I have about one hundred sick days saved up and I don't know exactly why I have been saving them, but it certainly wasn't for this.  

Luckily, I have a friend who is subbing for me for all seven school days . . . and she didn't make me write plans so that was a huge blessing.  And the parents in my class have been so supportive and sweet.  


I hate missing out on anything.  I'm the type of person who hides books from subs because I want to be the one to read them to my kids.  I rearrange lessons for subs so that I can teach the fun stuff and they have to teach the . . . well, the whatever stuff.

So this is going to be a long week.

In any case, I'm managing the pain pretty well, I think.  I like to think of myself as a tough chick.

I want to call my oral surgeon (not like I'm looking for an excuse or anything!) and say, You hit me over the head with a brick?  Really? Is that all you got, pretty boy?!


PS  It took me about four tries to write this whole post because even though I'm a tough chick, I feel a little woozy.  Not gonna lie.

;)  <<<----  See the way that face looks?  Now you can picture mine in real life.   


Planting (in Under 30 Minutes!!)

We are learning about plants.

I like this unit because we kick it off with the actual planting of plants.

I used to dread the actual planting of plants because I felt rushed, out of control, and just a tad bit panicky.  

These days . . . well . . . it's no big thing.  I don't know if that's because I'm older, wiser, and more experienced, or if it's because I've realized that feeling rushed, out of control, and a tad bit panicky just happens to be my teaching style.

Anywho, I'm sure you already know how to plant, but I thought I'd share my tips and tricks with you, especially if you have 32 first graders and want to know how to do it in under thirty minutes.

That's right.  In under thirty minutes.

First, you have to get your hands on the The Magic School Bus Goes to Seed video.  And if you don't have access to the video, you can get it on You Tube, which is what I did.  And if you can't access You Tube, then I'm out of ideas for you and you might as well stop reading this because The Magic School Bus Goes to Seed video is step one in my whole under thirty minutes scenario.

Second, before playing the video, you have a chat with your kiddos.

You say:

We're going to plant garden beans today!

Then you'll have to wait for the applause to die down, as well as the choruses of We did this in Kindergarten!!!

Third, you model how to scoop pretend soil into a pretend cup in the air.  Make a big deal out of scooping too much soil and too little soil.  This can be hard to do since it's all invisible at this stage so be sure to ham it up big time.  Use big eyes and funny faces to accomplish this stage.

Fourth, model how to drop four pretend seeds (FOUR SEEDS!!  WE GET FOUR SEEDS!!!???!) into the pretend cup and push them down and cover them back up with soil.  Again, because this part is pretend, you have to over-do it.

Last, put your pretend cup under the pretend trickle of water at the sink.  Then go put your cup on the windowsill.

I made my kids do these steps over and over in the air because I didn't want to have to say it 32 times.

(I guess I have a step before the first step which we can call step zero.  Step zero was that I wrote each kid's name in sharpie on the plastic cups ahead of time, as well as cut open the bag of soil and set it outside my door.)

While my kids watched The Magic School Bus Goes to Seed, I called a few at a time outside to plant.  My door was open the whole time so my kids were not unsupervised unless you count that one minute that a cup blew away and I had to chase it down the stairs and around the corner.

Clear plastic cups are key if you want to see the roots grow.
This Miracle-Gro Potting Mix is also key because it's 
"specially formulated
for fast root development".

I get these exact Garden Bean seeds every.single.year.
And every single year, they grow like crazy.
I don't know if it's because they're organic, 
they're named Burpee, 
or if it's because they're part of the Whole 30 diet, 
but whatever it is, they work.
They're from Walmart.

And here they are.
Day 1.

I only had a couple of kids try to water their soil before they had soil in their cups.  

And I only had one kid hold his seeds in his hands and tell me he had planted them.

I don't know if he was going to eat them or just forgot the steps.  You never know.

One last thing that I always do is plant 4 - 5 extra cups when my kids aren't looking.  That way, I can switch them out with any duds that just don't grow.

For some reason, there's always one or two duds.  And by duds, I mean one or two kids who drown the everlasting lives out of their seeds and grow mold instead of garden beans.  

I just pull a little switcheroo.

And there you have it.

How to plant 32 plants in under 30 minutes and still have your sanity.

Or most of it, anyway.



Sunday Summary

So I'm going to be honest.

When am I not?

This weekend was crazy busy with Hadar's (Miss Kindergarten's) wedding and I couldn't get a post done in time for Five for Friday or Five for Fraturday . . . so we'll just call this Summary Sunday.

Or the Sunday Summary.

That's me on the far right in case you don't recognize me in a fancy dress and curly hair standing near a real-life Barbie doll.

I mean, look at Hadar.

I would hate her if I didn't love her.  :)

From left to right, we have Ashley (a non-blogger, although we are talking her into starting one), Tara (Little Minds at Work), Michelle (Apples and ABCs), Hadar, Erit (Hadar's sister), and me.  Although, in this picture, Tara took her heels off and I still had mine on which means Tara is Teeny Tiny here and I am practically a basketball player.  

Really.  If someone had given me a basketball, I could have slam dunked.

Instead, I got something in my contact (which I think was probably one of the fake eyelash extension what-have-you's) and it was killing me (I was crying out of one eye which made me look like I was only half-emotional) and so right before the ceremony (I'm talking a minute before the ceremony) I popped it out and put it in my pocket.

Yes, my pocket.

My dress had pockets!!!  I love a dress with pockets!!  I didn't actually realize I had pockets until yesterday, but there you go.  I kept some mints and a tissue in one pocket, and my contact in the other.

Shoulder shrug.

I can see one-eyed better than you might think.

After the ceremony, Steve ran (on foot) back to the hotel which was across the street and got my contact solution and a case.  I soaked it for awhile and then was able to pop it back in no problem.

Which means I was two-eyed for the reception and, let's face it, you need to be able to see what you're eating so thank goodness for that.  Especially when there is a dessert table.

And there was a dessert table.

Hadar was stunning and not at all, in any way, shape or form, a bridezilla.  It was such great girl time getting ready with her and taking pictures with her, and standing up for her, and celebrating with her afterwards.

It was also great to hang out with so many So Cal bloggers -- our husbands all get along, too, so it was just FUN!  Have I said fun a lot?  

Because it was FUN!

Left to right, we have Lauren (A Teachable Teacher), Michelle, Tara, Hadar, me, and then behind Hadar is Aris (Sailing into Second), Christy (Crayons and Whimsy), and Traci (Dragonflies in First).

Here's Steve and me in the photo booth:

These pictures make me laugh!  Steve went straight for that gladiator hat, but I'm always afraid of lice so I just grabbed the feather boa . . . I don't know if that is more hygienic or not . . . 

Because now I am sick.

I have a cold.


I don't blame the photo booth, though.  Really.  I don't.


I'm going to spend the rest of the day resting.  And by resting, I mean sitting on the couch eating, lounging, looking on social media at pictures of Hadar's wedding and catching up on reality TV.



The Message Center {for the 3rd Time}

I went back to school yesterday.  Because Spring Break is over.  {insert wailing and moaning and crying and alarm clocks here} I have to admit I was a bit nervous and unsure of how the whole day was going to play out -- but it went great.

We had a grief counseling team on site for the entire day, as well as a roving sub for any staff member that needed it.  

I am happy to say that being with my kids was the best thing for me.  I was busy, I was needed, I was teaching, I was reading, I was modeling how to make new shapes from old shapes (geometry!!), and I almost never sat down.

In other words, it was a normal day.  And I guess I needed that.

Not to mention, it's good for my ego when my kids say they missed me more than life and their spring break was oh-so-boring and they me hug me tighter than a hug should be so that I have to say stop hugging me now.

Today, I introduced the Message Center to this crop of kids.  I've blogged about it twice already.  You can check out the original post {HERE} and last year's post {HERE}.

I am thinking I must have reached every teacher on the planet by now and surely this is old news and you don't need to see it again.

Surely.  And Laverne.

But . . . just in case . . . if you don't know what the Message Center is, then this post is for YOU.  I consider this my duty.

This year, I am using four notebooks from Walmart that were 88 cents each.  You'd think I'd have notebooks or Real-Estate-pads-that-were-left-on-my-door or some kind of list-making pad somewhere around here, but I don't.  That is because if I make a list, I lose it.  Which means I can't find any of the notebooks, Real Estate pads, or list-making pads anywhere.  And I did have the thought of asking parents to donate some writing pads, but I was not on the ball, shall we say.

In fact, there wasn't even a ball.

It was more of an oh no, I need some new centers, shoot, I thought I'd taken care of this before break, what can I do that won't take any time at all, goshdarnit, think, think, THINK! situation.

So there you go.

Today, one of my groups that got to go to Message Center for the first time ever, they are so lucky, I can't wait until it's my turn, had a partnership that was on the . . . well . . .  let's just say that this duo struggles in writing.

Well, wouldn't you know - they didn't struggle today!!!!  It was a WRITING MIRACLE.  {cue the applause}

Talk about getting kids engaged in writing!

I think I need to do Message Center whole class.  And I'm not kidding.

Really.  I'm not.

P.S.  Let me remind you that this is a quiet center.  

P.P.S.  You're welcome.