Monday, December 30, 2013

2013

So, when did tomorrow end up being December 31st? Man  I lose track of the days so badly during this time of the year! I blame it on not having to go back to work until next Monday.

So 2013 was a pretty FANTASTIC year for me. I'm normally not the most optimistic of people, but as I look back, I really have no reason to complain about anything that happened this year. So let's get to it!


Obviously, so much of my favorites this year are going to be wedding related. Like the fact that I had oe of the best nights ever at my bachelorette party! Thanks to these wonderful ladies!


I got married. And my wedding was everything I could ever imagine it being and more! Full of love, laughter and being surrounded by my family friends. It still blows my mind that I had a wedding like that!


My school nominated me for Teacher of the Year. I didn't win, but still awesome to be thought of. I'm at the point of my career where I feel I deserve to get recognition. It takes time and I'm glad I had to work for it! Oh and my class is by far the cutest one I've had in a really long time!


It's been fun getting to have my own place with J. I know my habits drive him crazy, but I do love our little home! Here's to hoping we find our permanent one in 2014!


J and I had a wonderful first Christmas together. I think we did a good job of balancing family and having some time to ourselves. Plus between the two of us and our families, we got spoiled this year!

Like I said, even though 2013 wasn't perfect, I cannot complain. It wouldn't be right or fair. So here's to hoping 2014 is just as good!

Thursday, December 26, 2013

First Christmas

I hope that you had a Merry Christmas yesterday (or a fun, relaxing day if you don't celebrate!)

J and I spent the earlier part of the week until Christmas Eve night at his parents' house outside of Savannah. Always so relaxing when we go up there.  His parents are the best and let us open presents on Christmas Eve. His mother got me the prettiest shirts from Loft and so many other things! It was fun to see his mom's reaction to her gift, a smaller parent version of our wedding album! I'm pretty blessed to have the in-laws that I have!

Christmas Eve we made our way back to Jacksonville, to stop at my parents' house. My favorite Christmas tradition has to be our pjs. My mom gets us new ones every year and in recent years has been getting the girls matching ones too!

I would be lying if I said it wasn't a bit odd to wake up Christmas morning with J, but it was so much fun! (I wish I took pictures, but we were just too into gift giving to do that!) He loved my gifts to him (pretty sure the electric toothbrush was his favorite... he's all about the dental hygiene!) but I hit the money on the clothes and the yummy pistachios he later found in his stocking.

I think my favorite presents from J were the Michael Kors watch (finally!) and he surprised with a Pandora bracelet. My first two charms are a stack of books and cute little kitty. He's such a thoughtful guy.

Around 11 we headed to my parents' house in our PJS! I texted my mom if she minded, and she said no. SCORE! Made it that more fun to open presents in your pjs. Love this picture that my uncle took:


Not sure what's better, the matching pjs, my expression or my brother's! We got some really thoughtful gifts from my parents and my mother loved the parent album we gave her, too.

After my parents' house we stopped at our friends' house. J played XBOXone with her husband and I learned how to make this bracelet on a Rainbow Loom!


Can I just say... I kind wish I had my own rainbow loom??? Completely understand why kids are obsessed with it. Plus it's nice that one of the most popular toys out there right now is more crafty than techy.

J and I ended the night back at home where I made jalapeno poppers, bang bang shrimp and a bruschetta cheese ball.


YUM!

All in all, a pretty perfect first Christmas for J and I. :)

Friday, December 20, 2013

Five For Friday... Christmas Break edition!

My Friday was technically Wednesday, which was the last day of school before break. To say that the kiddos were excited... that would be an understatement! Even my sweet little darlings were acting like complete hot messes!

But break is here and I'm about to head out to breakfast with one of my best friends, so let's recap my top five this week, shall we?


Over the weekend, J and I FINALLY stopped into this yummy popcorn store. Each one of my popcorn pieces was like eating a yummy orange lollipop. I have to kill time today, so I may be returning to try another fun flavor!



As is tradition (and like a thousand other schools out there!) first grade had our Polar Express day on Wednesday. The kids wore their jammies and so did their adults! I adore my team. We are simply the best!!!


J surprised my students by coming and reading to them. It was really cute how enthralled they were by him. Plus he brought them coloring books, which made them love him even more!

someecards.com - Fact. Teachers are always more excited for Christmas break than students.

Pretty true. Especially when it's 18 days long this year!!!

I know that's only four, but it was a pretty short week for me. I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Linking up with Lauren!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

5 Months...

So just sitting here on my lunch break, chowing down on the yummy Chick Fil A J brought me for lunch (thanks J) thinking about how blessed I am.

I know bloggers only write about the good stuff (well at least a lot of them do!) and I don't want to do that, but at the same time I realize how blessed I really am. I have a job that I'm good at, a class that is pretty fantastic, and a really great husband.

J and I have been married five months today and while in the grand scheme of things that's not long, it's been a fun rollercoaster ride. I thought I knew him pretty well before July 12 but now I know him even more. We've been learning and growing with each other and that's just awesome. Like how I left on the oven after baking my awesome blueberry loaf last night (oops.) I would have gotten ridiculously annoyed at him, but I'm grateful that he didn't act that way towards me. :)

I'm counting down the days to Christmas Break (4 school days in case anyone was wondering!) and I'm getting SUPER pumped for our first Christmas together. So here's to many, many, MANY more months of learning and growing and having fun!


Friday, December 6, 2013

IT'S FRIDAY!

SCORE! Thank goodness it's Friday. It was a short week, and I just had a mini-break, but I am starting the countdown to Winter Break (FYI, 8 days!) Overall, this was a busy and short week, so let's get to it!


Absolutely loving how fun and cheery my house is when I walk in. I have a few more things I want to add (like some cute printables I found!) but it's pretty perfect to me!


I received this good news this week! My project on Donor's Choose was funded! If you haven't heard about Donor's Choose, it's this amazing website where you can write requests for classroom needs and people can donate to your cause. If you've never checked it out, please do!


My students and I had a wonderful time on our field trip yesterday! We went and saw a condensed version of the Nutcracker. There were a few head scratching moments (like, pretty sure there weren't any drunken guests at the party and how could you leave out Trepak?) but overall my classed LOVED it and they looked adorable all dressed up!


Last night I attended what was definitely one of the MOST exciting Jaguar games EVER! The boys pulled out a big win and I barely have a voice this morning. The Jaguars currently own the longest win streak in the AFC! LOVE IT!

Tonight is my holiday party for work and right after J and I are heading up to Savannah for the weekend. Should be a good time!

Happy Friday! As always, linking up with Lauren for H54F!

Friday, November 29, 2013

Thankful for a lot...

So obviously, yesterday was Thanksgiving. And just like everyone else, I had a lot to be thankful for. It was a wonderful, relaxing day spent with the people I care the most about. So my 5 for Friday is going to revolve around yesterday, even though there were a few other bright spots in my week like first grade pulling off very fun and successful Thanksgiving centers, finishing my Christmas shopping while out and about with my best friend on Wednesday, and oh just the fact that I have 6 glorious days off from school??


1. Our first Thanksgiving photo that I made my mom take. I felt really pretty yesterday and I love how the picture came out! I'm uber thankful for J and feel pretty blessed to call him my husband.

2+3. I contributed not one but TWO very yummy things to my family's Thanksgiving dinner: Boston Creme Pie Poke Cake (um divine!) and Broccoli Blue Cheese Casserole (which everyone agreed was delicious!) It's fun showing my family I do know how to cook.

4. Speaking of yummy food, my mom and dad really outdid themselves this year. Lunch was AMAZING and I'm thankful that my parents are such amazing cooks!

5. J and I decided NOT to head out for shopping. So we came home, changed into our comfy and WARM clothes. We refuse to turn on the heat just yet!

So two thumbs up for an awesome Thanksgiving, and I can't wait until tonight where we will decorate our Christmas tree!

What was the yummiest thing you ate yesterday?
Did you go shopping and find any good deals?
I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving!


As always, linking up with Lauren!


Monday, November 25, 2013

Little bit of sunshine...

Let's face it... the school year comes and my blogging goes out the window. I don't like it, but that's how it happens. Which stinks, because I really do have some fun things to blog about.... like the time J and I couldn't decide what to do for dinner so we decided to each get our own take-out meal! (Everyone wins, right??!) Or how awesomely hilarious (yes I know that's not right but I do not care) my class is this year.

So when I saw I got nominated for the Sunshine Award by Lourdes over at Love is Life, I knew I had to do it. So even though I am a bit late, and even though I'm not going to nominate other people (at least not at the moment) here are my answers to her questions!



1. Growing up, which parent were you the closest to? Did this change at any time?
My mom. And no that hasn't changed. My dad and I are the EXACT same person so we tended to butt heads a lot growing up. Took me a while to learn how to accept and interact with him. But my mom and I have always been close. Which is why I don't always get it when people are not close to their moms. 

2. Do you believe in "Love at first sight?" Do you think it happens?
No. I believe in attraction at first sight. I used to believe in love at first sight but J changed all that. Love and affection is something that definitely has to grow and be tended to. And it's amazing what happens when that moment finally hits and love starts to bloom. That reasoning is one of the reasons that J and I chose "I See the Light" for our first dance. 

Seriously, tears everytime!


3. What period of history is your favorite? Why?
WWII. It just encompasses so many different aspects of history and it was SUCH a pivotal moment in history. Doesn't really matter which part of it, I love reading about all of it. So many of my papers in high school revolved around World War 2. I just loved learning about it. 

4. If you could change one thing about your appearance what would it be? 
I'm kinda over my acne and acne scars. I just finished reading a book that has an intriguing plan so I'm gonna give that a shot. It's just annoying to still be dealing with it!

5. What is your favorite fast food place?
Chick Fil A. I barely eat it anymore but it's still my favorite! Mmmm chicken nuggets, waffle fries and a fruit punch! YUM!

6. If you could live in any country, where would you live? If it isn't the country you currently live in, why did you choose another country?
England. Or anywhere in Europe really. Just to have a different experience. 

7. How many kids do you want to have? Boys? Girls? 
No more than 2. A boy and a girl preferably. 

8. Can you do a push up?***
 Yes I can. I worked out with a trainer off and on for about a year and he really helped my upper body strength. I used to be able to do a few in a row...now I'd probably die. 

9. Who is the most influential person in your life? How have they influenced you?
My mom. She's just the most amazing person, and I've never met anyone who didn't like her. She always has a positive caring spirit no matter who she is around or what she has gone through. I try as much as possible to be like her. 

10. I nominated you because I love your blog. Why did you start blogging? Has your motivation for blogging changed as time goes on?
Last summer I was bored and decided I used to have a Livejournal so why not try another blog. Never knew I'd find this world! My motivation has died since then, but I still like to maintain it. I need to stop reading blogs on my iPhone so that way I can actually comment!

What would your answers to these questions be? Anything like mine???

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Man, good + crazy weekend

I'm writing this BEFORE the weekend ends because of a number of reasons:
a) I won't get to it tomorrow
b) I really want to remember what happened this weekend
and c) I just feel like it.

Friday, J and I walked around the mall. We are on the hunt for a nice looking fake Christmas tree. I adore rel trees, but I just don't trust my cat around one. Found a nice one at Sears and will be going back Friday to get it because just like everything else, it will be on SALE!

J's Sunglasses?J is the HARDEST person in the world to buy for, so when he mentioned he wanted new sunglasses, I was like SWEET! So we went to try some on at Sunglass Hut, but those people? WAY TOO PUSHY for me, and I worked retail before. After we left, we came upon another sunglasses shop, where the guy looked surprised to see us come in.
He turned out to be AWESOME at helping J figure out what style he wanted, and since his store had like NO customers, he told me he'd give me a great deal on a pair. So I kicked J out of the store and proceeded to buy him a pair. Here are the one's he picked, but he has no idea which one I finally chose!Obvs, not going to say on here which pair he's getting, but let's just say I think I picked a GREAT pair.

Saturday was the annual Nights of Lights ceremony in St Augustine. I adore this time of the year, because it's just the perfect kick-off to the holidays. Nights of Lights was even voted by National Geographic as one of the best holiday light displays in the USA. J and I even took our engagement pictures down there last year:



To change it up, one of my closest friends and her family joined us for the fun. Afterwards J, my brother and I hung at their place, playing the hilarious games Things. Needless to say, combine alcohol and a group of people that have some interesting senses of humor and you got one great night! My bro ended up crashing on my couch.

This morning, my cat woke me and J up because she obviously doesn't get the concept of weekends. When I went to put her in the guest room, I heard running water coming from downstairs. I go downstairs and step in a massive puddle. Seems that our toilet had a mind of it's own, ran the whole night and pretty much flooded almost all of the downstairs. When I told J what happened, he kind of looked at me like this:


So after lots of towels, J running to the store to buy a mop and moving all our furniture around, our floors finally dried. Still don't know why the toilet did that!

So now we are just crashed out on the couch, because obviously that's what ya do after a really long, and fun and crazy weekend. Thank goodness this is only a 2 day work week, or I'd be in panic mode!!!!

How was your weekend? Have you gotten your Christmas tree yet? Ever woke to a household emergency?

PS. THE JAGUARS WON! WOOT! WOOT!

Friday, November 22, 2013

Cara Box Reveal

I know this is a bit late, but it's been such a fast zooming week! I've been meaning to share what I received in my Cara Box.  For those of you that do not know, Cara Box is an exchange created by the wonderful Kaitlyn over at Wifessionals. You get to know two other bloggers and send one of them a fun box.

This time around, the swap lasted three months. I loved that, because it really gave me more time to get to know my partners! I was partnered with Raewyn, who blogs at Warrior Queen, and Melissa, who blogs over at Honeysweetbee. Both are awesome girls, so definitely go and check them out! You can go  see what I put in Melissa's box.

The theme for the swap was falling into fall! Raewyn sent me a box that smelled instantly of fall the second that I opened it! Unfortunately, there are no pictures at the moment because my camera went caput and my phone is being a bit silly and not wanting to email my pictures, so I Googled for different images to match the items I received! I'll try to update this post if I am able to use J's iPad to take pictures. :)

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She sent me a mini candle, yummy cranberry hand soap (love the jar!), pumpkin lotion (even though I'm not the biggest fan of pumpkin scents, I loved how this one is so light and the lotion is super creamy!) and a cute little fall gift bag. Raewyn also sent me a box of Cinnamon Apple Tea, which J promptly opened up and made himself some!

Being that I am a teacher, she also threw in a note pad (seriously, can NEVER have too much of those!), cute pens (once again, I'm ALWAYS losing my pens), and cute little orange and brown leaf table decorations. At first, the table decorations had me confused, but when I read my note, Raewyn explained that she thought they'd be good for math. I can't wait to add them to my fall counting centers, my kiddos are going to flip!

So thanks Raewyn! It's been a lot of fun getting to know you. If you want to get in on the next Carabox, it's not too late! The next sign up opens up December 2! Click on the button to find out more.





Monday, November 11, 2013

Days off are so refreshing!

Just like everyone else, I love an extra day off. It's just nice to have an extra day to get things done. Here's some of what I got accomplished today:

  • Lesson plans. This wasn't too difficult, since my team and I share, but I like putting them in my words so I can remember it better. 
  • Cleaned the bathroom. It's a chore that always gets left off. 
  • Went to breakfast with my one of my closest friends. I don't get to see her as much as I used to, so this was nice!
  • Folded all of J's laundry. Boys are dirty and their laundry piles up faster than anything else I've seen!
  • Tried one of my pinned crock pot recipes. My house smells heavenly right now!
  • Bought and made the caramel apple cake mix. even better? Finally used the cake pop pan my mother in law bought me for my shower! I'm going to melt some caramels and have a mini fondue party with J for dessert!
  • Order honeymoon prints! J and I bought a cute scrapbooking set before we got off the Carnival Dream but I haven't ordered the pictures. Finally did today! And I ordered a print of the two of us at our wedding to mail to my grandma. She keeps bugging my mom about it!
  • Had a DIY mani/pedi time while catching up on Revenge!
Man! That was a lot wasn't it? It was nice to have the day off and be able to do everything I needed to do in a relaxing way!

Here's to a great week!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Better week

Last week, I posted how I was getting too into my head. (Ugh, that sentence is so wrong but it's the only way I can explain it!)

So I decided to be proactive (my school uses the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People for kids) and get around the cause of all my stress (my own mind!)

And I was successful! Whenever something happened that I would have previously analyzed or moaned about for hours or days, I told myself, you can't control that/them. I would remind myself of my own positives.

I also took advantage of any free time I had during the day at school to prepare for the next day. It was nice to come home and not stress about waking up early or try and do some work. It allowed me to have more time with J. We even took two walks this week around our neighborhood. The walks were perfect! Nice weather and good conversation! They made me feel a heck of a lot closer to him, which is exactly what we had been needing!
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I'm going to continue to attempt to do the same this week. It's going to be a struggle, because we have a major district visit on Tuesday. The head honchos of curriculum will be in my room. But here's the thing: I know I am a good teacher and I know they will find something wrong. Hopefully what they find "wrong" will be something constructive. I appreciate constructive criticism; I can't stand nitpicking!

Have a wonderful week!

How do you overcome your own stresses? 

Saturday, October 26, 2013

I write about this all the time...

I internalize everything. I take things that happen (especially the not positive ones) and keep them in my head, playing them over and over AND over. It's not a good habit, I know this. But it's one that I constantly struggle with. Especially when it comes to work.

I adore my class. But it's the things outside of the classroom that bring me down. And I'm not gonna write the instances here because I don't know who may or may not stumble across this. But know that it's bringing me down. It makes me want to cry because I just don't know what else to do. I tell myself, let it go. Keep quiet. Don't disagree. Keep your thoughts to yourself. And none of that ever happens.

And the worse part is, these feelings are seeping into parts of my life that are great. Like my actual classroom and my actual class. My marriage. My friendships. My face ( seriously, I haven't had acne this bad since I was in college!) And I don't want that to keep happening.

So I hit up Pinterest in hope of finding some quotes that I can say to myself. Affirmations I suppose. Here are some of my favorites.




The bottom hit me the most. I have ALWAYS known it is a choice to be happy. I just don't know why it's so hard to make that choice. But I suppose the best things in life do come from hard choices.

Thanks for letting me vent friends! How do you handle your own internalizations?

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Wedding Wednesday! Reception Part 1

Man! These wedding recaps are taking me so long to do. (Kind of like my thank yous! They're done just need to be mailed. Oops!) But I need a does of happy today so below you'll find some of my favorite shots from the cocktail hour and the beginning of the reception. Enjoy!

We took some portraits on the beach... love how they came out!







While we were doing that, everyone seemed to be having a good time at the cocktail hour... my family especially!

My mom and her brothers.

Family Tradition: Normal shot then GOOFY shot!



So glad that my vision of simple but elegant came true!



My grandmother and her friend handmade all of our napkins!






Loved his groom's cake!!!


Love that she came in this way! We told her she had to do something fun!


Apparently my brother and J's sister had an elaborate handshake... no picture proof though!





One of my favorites of the night!

One of my favorites of J!

J FINALLY meeting my closes friends from college!




 We had dinner, then toasts, then cake cutting, THEN first dance. J and I hate being the center of attention!




Needless to say, the best man speech was HILARIOUS but a bit embarrassing!

That's all for now! Maybe I'll be on the ball and schedule my next post? Maybe? Who knows?

Chits and Giggles