end of the year

So, if you know me, you know I love a couple of things – arts and crafts and personalization. I worked with many, many amazing people this year, but I wanted to share my gratitude to two of my coworkers who picked up my slack, poured in ideas, took great initiative, and truly eased the burden of so much “stuff” that had to happen this year. Enter Treat Greeting Cards. You know Shutterfly, right? You may have ordered Christmas cards from them like we have! …. Well, Treat a newer brand of theirs! This website and their products have absolutely stolen my crafty, personalized loving heart! The specialize in cards, phone cases, and mugs; fun, useful items like that! I went to order these two gals cards thinking I would just be able to add a picture and my own greeting/signature.  I was already stressing thinking I had to find a card that would communicate something close to what I wanted to say. I even feared I’d have to be uber creative in making a card “work” that really didn’t. But, when I say I personalized just about EVERY aspect of  these cards. Ya’ll I was in heaven. Heaven. Heaven. Heaven. The fact that I was able to personalize the message sent me over the moon!! Annnnnd, then they came on the day they Treat said they would. Yes, they give you an accurate delivery date and will even send the card to your bud or stud if time is of the essence. THRILLED. I mean. I couldn’t be happier! The gals seemed to really enjoy them and one of my other coworkers is already planning and creating cards for a few of her friends! I mean, who wouldn’t want their face with a personalized message on a card?!

Check these out! while simultaneously excusing my work area. I live/work/paint/etc here!! amy2dewalt2Yes, I threw in a little Aibileen from The Help!!

Then… Two more of my favorite things in the entire world – painting and personalization collide…. Every single cheer or classroom gift I’ve given my kids has been an initial, a personalized picture frame (complete with their name & photograph!), SOMETHING with their name on it… and, I’ve made it myself. With attempting to not make it look homemade. lol. 

This year, my vision for my cheerleaders’ gifts were chalkboards. And, as frustrated as I was about the paint pens not making precise, clean lines – it does kinda look like chalk. I had to seriously fight my inner perfectionist and not focus so much on what is “wrong” or why it isn’t perfect and delight in the fact that it looks just like what I wanted it to look like. (Doesn’t life just work out that way sometimes?) I love that the black paint has a slight, slight shimmer to it, too!!! Annnnnd, I didn’t get paint of any furniture or carpet this time!! Woooooot!!!

Here are a few of the finished “chalkboards” aleshadanielle And, then my heart was happy.

… cheers to finding new ways to love on those you love and appreciate most!!!
(And, you still have time to love on your kiddos’ teachers, your fave coworker, classmate, teammate or WHOEVER before that very last day of school!!!)

Signature

… teachable moments

20130919-075421.jpg

I’m sitting at my desk, watching my students come in and interact with each other as they prepare for their day and I’m humbled.

As an educator, I’m not paid much but am reminded daily why investing in these children is more important than choosing not to teach because of salary.

Education is humbling. It’s a big job that causes so many unknown ripple effects & impacts. I teach my second graders quite a bit throughout the year but they educate me, as well. I appreciate how my students and I mold each other.

As you prepare for your day, no matter what it is that you do, walk into your day recognizing that you are in a unique opportunity to honor God in a multitude of ways.
Ask God how you can glorify Him today and don’t shy away from opportunities that he presents you with.

…. here’s to seeing our jobs and careers as opportunities to serve and worship God through how we interact with each other.

Signature

… back to school

School starts on Monday and I’m actually excited. Up until Friday, I was worried that I wasn’t going to really get excited about school starting.
20130817-065604.jpg
<br /
I was wrong! Thankfully.
Our school's Open House was last night and my excitement for seeing my new & old students came rushing back.
I was so proud to add my cheerleader's trophies & awards from this summer's camp in the trophy case and see them again! These middle school girls are the sweetest things – they've already started asking about practices and games.

Last week, I wrote about prepping for school, expectations, and the triad that sets everyone up for a successful school year for Houston Style Magazine.

20130817-070317.jpg I can be a bit hard core in the classroom and with my students. I expect so much from them because I work so hard to make sure they’re successful. Thankfully, we have parents and expectations rooted in our legacy that guide every student that walks through our doors.

As educators, we all know that every child will not be on Honor Roll or make all A’s and E’s – however, my expectation is that you work hard and do your best.

I’m hoping that this year as we prepare to send our kiddos back to school that we are focused on our kids doing their best. Yes. I want my class (with a combined effort of each of them) to be the best 2nd grade class in all areas. Yes, we push them. We work with them. We encourage and set the bar high. But, we have to remember that each child is different, they each have different motivations and skill levels.

Even though our intentions are the best, we hurt more than we help when we create unhealthy competitions & comparisons between siblings & classmates, when we push them further than they can go at the moment, & set bars higher than they can reach.

20130817-071356.jpg

Education is a journey & so are these nine months we spend in the classroom. If we each work hard, the parents/family, student, & teacher, every single day- we will accomplish great things.

I pray (in Jesus’ name!!! :)) that we walk through the doors of our schools and classrooms prepared for a new, fresh beginning and ready to work hard every single day. We’ll be successful. We’ll be patient with each other. We’ll do our best and treat each other well.

20130817-071747.jpg My little bundles started school last week – aren’t the first day of school pictures so cute?! I love this idea!!!

…. here’s to an amazing school year!

Signature