My Classroom 2011-2012


I have always enjoyed looking at other teachers’ classrooms online and now it’s my turn to share. I don’t have many pictures and they aren’t fabulous because I took them on my phone but here they are. :)

I teach 4th grade in a very very very small and old school. I have beautiful wood floors in my classroom! I took over as the 4th grade teacher at Westview Elementary on November 1st. I replaced another teacher who need to get out of teaching as quickly as possible. (Personal reasons)

The first picture up is a picture of our CAFE board. (If you are a teacher and you have no idea what I’m talking about…check out The Daily 5 and CAFE by Gail Moser and Joan Boushey) The circles are pizza pans that are spray painted and the students place their goal magnet. They have a goal each week. under one of the four headers: Comprehension, Accuracy, Fluency, and Expanded Vocabulary.)IMG_0652

Next up are the handy dandy pencil sharpeners. You can’t tell from this picture but the blue paper is glitter paper. I LOVE glitter. Love. Love. Love. We have a pencil procedure in our room. Sharpen two at the beginning of the day. If you break both during the day you can put the dull one in the “Sharpen Please” cup and grab one from the “Ready to Write” cup. This means that we don’t hear that annoying pencil sharpener during the day and it doesn’t interrupt teaching or learning. (Although I have found the best and most quiet pencil sharpener EVER…google classroom friendly supplies and it should pop up saying something about home of the quietest pencil sharpener!)IMG_0653

Then we have a picture of our classroom calendar. When students get older you don’t spend time “doing” the calendar so the days are always up and the students have now learned how to “read” a calendar. (Not just looking for the last number that was put on that day…)IMG_0654

I love all the turquoise and polka dots. I believe I got all this cute stuff from Creative Teaching Press. I made my own calendar headers and numbers. I wanted simple and easy to read. The next picture is a picture of our IPICK sign. Courtesy of Cara Carroll at The First Grade Parade.IMG_0656

I love finding great ideas online. The best thing about blogging is that most teachers are doing it and we love to share/borrow/steal ideas! I love our whole group behavior incentive.I have used several cookie sheets in the classroom. I found them at the Dollar Tree for $1.  I found the Brownie Points idea from What the Teacher Wants.To the left of the cookie sheet are the subject headers. I write the students’ goals under each category for that day. IMG_0657

I love organization. In this next picture you will see many things. My students make their lunch choice on the cookie sheet (another spray painted item) and then the Lunch Count helper tallies up the choices and sends the sheet down to the office. We also have a take home filer. Each student has a file and every day the student puts their take home folder in the file and leaves it there until the end of the day. I will file their homework in the files and I also have a student who is the filer. That student files graded work into the files at the end of the day. They have to be pretty trustworthy! ;)IMG_0658

This blurry shot is just a shot of my whole classroom. It’s pretty small but I only have 12 students so it’s perfect for us!IMG_0660

One of my favorite items! I found these baskets in the dollar section at Target. LOVE LOVE LOVE the dollar section at Target! Well I got some blue SOLO cups and each student has their own cup at each table. The charts on the table are the students’ behavior charts. These were working pretty well but I found it difficult to mark their behavior in 3 different spots. So they no longer have these charts but it was worth a shot! IMG_0661

Our individual behavior incentive is called “Sweet Behavior”. The students earn “sweet treats” which are actually those colored fuzzy balls. The students earn so many fuzzies and can then purchase a reward from the Sweet Behavior Catalog. The students get to chose every Thursday afternoon and then get their reward on Friday. All of the rewards are free rewards and I got the idea from First Grader…At Last!IMG_0665

This last picture is the only picture I got of the room before I started tearing down the awful, boring décor. If you even want to call it décor. This is just one of the bulletin boards but the whole classroom was covered in this newspaper print and everything was black and white…not cute black and white…like boring black and white. I am too bubbly and fun and outgoing and I LOVE COLOR! So it had to go but just thought I would share a before. :) Before

I hope you enjoyed a little tour of my room. It looks different now because I have added anchor charts and so much more since November but it’s a little peek into my occupation. ;)

Four Wheeling Date Day



Saturday January 14th my husband decided to take a day off from work for our Four Wheeling date. A little background…

My husband and I met on a blind “date” set-up by our friends. We went bowling and that was about it. Our first real date alone was the two of us four wheeling at Mill Creek.

So four wheeling has always been something special for us but also one of our very favorite hobbies!

This trip we went back to Mill Creek (first date site!) and had so much fun. The weather was just about perfect (a bit chilly but not too bad!) and we enjoy going with some of our favorite friends! {The Bumgarners}FourWheeling9

We enjoy getting dirty, getting stuck and winching out. We also enjoy the beautiful scenery. Arkansas really has some beautiful scenery and that is why we are the “Natural State”. FourWheeling1

We can usually spend a whole day riding but of course we make stops and play around! Here is a picture of Shelby being VERY dangerous. We don’t do these type of stunts. FourWheeling2

My husband is the king of winching. He LOVES using the winch and pulling people out of the mud! Here are some pictures of him in action…FourWheeling3FourWheeling4FourWheeling10FourWheeling11

As for me on the other hand…I enjoy just riding. No crazy stunts like winching myself up a huge rock wall. FourWheeling6FourWheeling7

I like riding through the mud pits. And of course if I get stuck then I winch myself out. :)FourWheeling13FourWheeling14

We enjoy riding and viewing all of God’s wonderful creations. Most of the time I stare in awe being blown away by his creations. How amazing is He. FourWheeling5

We love our special days together. Just the two of us.FourWheeling8

Oh and just because…a cute picture of my husband. He’s like a kid playing with his toys! FourWheeling15

Pillowcase Dress


I have met some of the sweetest people in bloggy world. Seriously.

I love meeting other moms that have kids the same age as my own so we can share ideas for how to do things. IMG_7057c

I met a sweet gal, Jessica, through twitter actually and then found her cute blog. It’s adorable, she writes letters to her kiddos. Go check her out! She has kids that are close to the same age as mine and she is also a fourth grade teacher. We have a lot in common!

I am working on her blog design and as a thank you she made Audrey the sweetest pillow case dress. It fits her pretty good right now and will be adorable for Valentines. Jessica is a perfectionist and the dress is absolutely PERFECT! I need to talk her into making them to sell. I love the idea of sewing and love making cute things with a sewing machine but I’m starting to realize that I’m just not very good at it. I would rather pay talented people like Jessica instead!


Thank you so much Jessica! Audrey looks so cute in her dress and I’m going to try to find some pink or red leggings to go with her dress for Valentines! 

Happy 1/2 Birthday Audrey Mayne!


Has it seriously already been half a year? (July 12, 2011) Time is going so quickly and I can’t do anything to make it slow down.

Miss Audrey,

     You are so precious. I am constantly telling your GG (my mom) how sweet and funny your little personality is. I don’t know if I expected you to be a baby similar to your brother but you are completely different. Your disposition is just…perfect (for the most part).


     You are wearing size 3 diapers. They are still a little big but I would rather them be big than too small. You are outgrowing 3-6 months clothes and as a matter of fact we just went yesterday to buy you all 6 months clothes. It seems like we didn’t prepare for this stage, we had lots of 3 months and 9 months but nothing in the middle. We found some cute outfits at our favorite store, Target.


     You have rolled over maybe 2 or 3 times but you can’t get your arm out from underneath your body so that is still a work in progress. You have also gotten crazy with blowing raspberries. Your face looks as though you are trying to do a #2 but you are really just blowing raspberries.


     You are eating very well. You eat 6 oz. at a time and you love when you have rice cereal in with your formula. We are done to one nursing session right at the start of bedtime. You just nixed the night time and morning feeds last night actually. :( It saddens me but I know that you are growing and that’s important. I tried to feed you some of our homemade baby food but you weren’t too interested yet. It’s a good thing that it stay fresh in the freezer for a LONG time. I know you’ll come around to it before too long.


     Your smile is contagious and you make me giggle. You were worth the bed rest and the uncomfortable sleep. Darlin’ we love you and can’t wait to see you grow even more.

                                                                                             Love You,

                                                                                         Daddy & Mommy (&Tryp too!)

Things I don’t want to forget


Tryp still uses the cutest words that continually make me smile.

Chap stick is actually “Pap Stick”.

Confetti is “Petti”

Cupcake is “Pop Cake”

{Can we say that it’s clear that he doesn’t quite have the /c/ sound down yet? hehe)

Banana is still “Pee nana”

These are only just a few of them but I don’t want to forget about them so I figured I would type these out now! He has turned into my little secretary. He informs me what we are going to do every day when we get home from school. Yesterday we were going to come home from school “…and practice scissors, do activity book and watch a movie.” I would like to think that he got this from someone else but it’s clearly me. I’ve always been a “planner” and like to let him know what’s happening before it’s going to happen. Well clearly he has figured out how to be my planner. I love that boy. 

Formula cans turned into money sorters


Have you ever wondered what to do with those darn formula cans?

I never thought about it much when I had Tryp but now I feel awful just throwing them out. I kept thinking- Can’t they be used for SOMETHING?

Well my friends, I came up with an idea. It’s not a NEW idea but I’m super excited about it! I decided to make Tryp some money sorting cans.

Here’s what you’ll need:

-formula cans (rinsed out and dried off)

-hot glue gun (I guess they don’t have cold glue guns…)

-cute scrapbook paper

-paper cutter

-xacto (sp?) knife



This is the first time I’m really posting a how-to on my blog and I wasn’t very good about taking pictures of each step. Ooops. I’ll make sure to do better when I make the next cans. I will be doing it again soon. You’ll need to measure the height of the can from the bottom or the lip to the top or the top lip. Then measure your paper to that exact length and cut. I thought it was going to be perfect. Well nothing is perfect in life. I should have known better but my paper wasn’t long enough to  wrap the can all the way around. This frustrated me for the fact that I’m Type A and slight OCD (that’s a whole other blog post in the future). I managed to make it through this craft with no serious melt downs. IMG_7034c

You might be able to catch the piece that I had to add in here-the picture below. You can tell because the lines in the plaid paper (bad choice of paper for covering up boo boos) don’t exactly match up. Ooops.IMG_7039c
I went to my computer and typed up the pictures and wording, printed, and cut them to fit my can perfectly. (I like to pretend that everything was perfect…haha) I colored the pennies with a brown crayon to make them look textured and coppery. Did it work? IMG_7045c

I had my handy dandy hubs of mine cut the slot for the pennies. I am TERRIBLE with knives and all things sharp so he was the perfect helper. IMG_7041cIMG_7046cIMG_7050cIMG_7051cIf you are wondering where the rest of the coin cans are…no worries, they will come. I’m a little bit OCD about the fact that they all have to have blue lids now. {to match of course} Here is my little secret, the soy formula cans come with PINK lids. I wanted Tryp to have boyish cans for his shelf so I took the blue lid off of the rice cereal can and replaced it with the pink Similac lid. I think I might go buy three more cans of rice cereal, that’s how serious I am about having blue lids. :) I hope that some of you may be able to make this craft. I know a lot of my “followers” have two kids around the same age as my own. Y’all Enjoy!


Homemade baby food- ALL the details!


As much as we don’t want our little girl to grow up, we were both VERY excited about making homemade baby food. I don’t really know why we decided to make her own food. I think it was the fact that my husband is in love with the food processor. Since Audrey is only 2 weeks away from being 6 months we decided it was time to get started. Now I knew that making your own baby food is the “healthier” option but what I did not realize was how much money I would be saving. {If you are just interested in the benefits and not really curious about how to make it then skip down to the bottom but you might as well read about how we made it because you’ll realize how SUPER easy it is!}

I tried to remember what were the first baby foods that I fed Tryp or the ones that are “recommended” to start with. We set out to Wal-Mart  and picked up some fresh veggies/fruit. We picked up a butternut squash, whole green beans, pears and some frozen peas (our Wal-Mart was out of fresh peas). 

The lady that checked us out at Wal-Mart asked how we were going to cook the squash and my husband told her we were making baby food. She was surprised and asked how we do it.

It was at that point that I realized I had no idea what I was doing.

So I came across a wonderful website: Wholesome Baby Food. Out of all the foods that I had purchased at Wal-Mart it seemed that the best one to start with (out of what I purchased) was butternut squash. I followed the basic steps listed on that website. IMG_7009c

1. Cut the squash in half and remove the seeds.

(I really stink at using a knife. Period. See below, it’s all kinds of jagged.)IMG_7011c

2. Place “meat” down into a baking pan and add 1 inch of water.

(The 2nd picture below shows the the water if you look closely.)IMG_7012cIMG_7015c

4. Bake for 40 minutes to 1 hour at 400 degrees.

(Look for the squash skin to start puckering-like below.)IMG_7018c

5. Scoop out the “meat” into a processor or blender.

(I’m pretty sure you should wait until it has cooled, I didn’t. I was too impatient. Also, we tried our blender first and it was NOT successful but our handy dandy Black&Decker processor was amazing!)IMG_7017c

6. Puree away. Add water to adjust the how thin or thick it is.

(I used the water left over in the pan that I cooked the squash in. This was suggested by the Wal-Mart check out lady, she said the water would contain a lot of the nutrients. So that’s what I did but that only went so far so I used bottled water also. You can see in the first 2 pictures below that it is still pretty chunky and then by the third picture I have gotten it pretty thin.)IMG_7019cIMG_7021cIMG_7027c

7. Pour into ice cube trays.

(We bought trays that have covers from Bed Bath and Beyond. After they are frozen you can transfer them to snack baggies.)IMG_7023cIMG_7024c


The benefits of making your own baby food:

  • Healthy: You know exactly what is in the food you just made. Gerber claims that what is in their baby food is just strictly the veggie/fruit/meat (whatever it may be) and water. How exactly does baby food last so long on the shelves at the stores then? Preservatives. Extra stuff that our babies do not need to consume. :)
  • Cheap: To buy a Gerber 2 pack of Squash is roughly $1.10. That comes with 2 plastic containers of 2.5 oz. each. So a total of 5 oz. for that price. We bought a squash for $2.62.

Gerber: $2.20 for 10 oz..

Homemade: $2.62 for 34 oz..

  • Safe: It’s safer for our babies. I know I’ve heard of times where there will be glass found in food so they recall all the food that has certain ID numbers. There is NO risk at home. Like I said before you know exactly what went in the food. In addition, it’s so much better for our environment. There are not tons of those little plastic containers being made and thrown away and not recycled.

I am not by any means an expert but if you have any questions I would be more than willing to help! :)

Have a good night y’all!