Thursday, July 31, 2014

Thursday Thoughts

"Getting over a painful experience
is much like crossing the monkey bars.
You have to let go at some point
in order to move forward."

~C. S. Lewis

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Celebrate Good Times, Come On! 7/26

Each Saturday  Ruth Ayres invites us to share and celebrate events, big or small, from our week. Looking for celebrations has certainly improved my outlook on my week.  For that, I am certainly grateful to Ruth and to all of you who choose to celebrate with me

It has been a funky summer, and I really don't mean that in a good sense.  I have been in a funk this summer which makes it a "funky summer."  Many wonderful things have happened, but my writing has been almost nonexistent.  It is not because I have not had time or because I did not have ideas.  I just did not want to write...a true funk.

Hopefully my celebrations today will change that!

Celebration one - Summer professional development.  I attended my last conference/workshop of the summer this past week.  The learning this summer has been amazing, and I cannot wait to start implementing and sharing this with my students and new colleagues.  Summer PD is a time to learn, reflect, and recharge without the stress of teaching.

Celebration two - Like-minded colleagues.  Sharing PD opportunities with colleagues makes the learning much more fun.  I have been lucky to share my summer PD with my teacher-friend, Kristen.  This was our first year of teaching together and being able to learn and share with a like-minded colleague has been a true celebration.  

Celebration three - New adventures.  After attending All Write! this summer, Kristen started blogging!  I wrote here about how getting her to start blogging was a summer project for me!  I am sure all of you remember hitting that publish button for the first time, wondering if anyone would read or even care about what you wrote. You can help me celebrate new adventures by going to her blog, Up in the Corner, and sharing an encouraging comment with her.

Celebration four - Ten days.  I have ten days of summer left.  I have a to-do list where an end does not exist.  I don't want to be consumed by the daunting tasks, so I choose to celebrate ten days by doing something for ME each day!

Have a wonderful week, and I hope all of you have many reasons to celebrate!

Friday, July 25, 2014

Thursday Thoughts...on a Friday

"If your actions inspire others
to dream more,
learn more,
do more,
and become more,
you are a leader."

~John Quincy Adams

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Thursday Thoughts

You have to look for you own finish line 
and tell yourself you will cross it...
you have to keep trying and trying 
and you will find the strength deep inside yourself, 
and when you find it, 
you will be proud, really, really proud."

~Beholding Bee written by Kimberly Newton Fusco

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Celebrate Good Times, Come On! 7/12

Each Saturday  Ruth Ayres invites us to share and celebrate events, big or small, from our week. Looking for celebrations has certainly improved my outlook on my week.  For that, I am certainly grateful to Ruth and to all of you who choose to celebrate with me.

Today I celebrate peach pie!  

I live in a small town where agriculture is the one of the main industries.  Because of this, homegrown produce is usually in abundance.  My favorite tastes of summer include: strawberries early summer, peaches and sweet corn mid-summer and watermelons late summer! 

Because of our harsh winter, the peach crop has not been good this year.  Last week at our local grocery store, I hesitantly purchased some peaches.  I am always a little leery about buying produce that I LOVE which is not local because I am usually disappointed.  Much to my surprise, the peaches were pretty tasty. So Friday I decided to make a peach pie and it was wonderful!

While making this pie, so many memories came flooding back.

My first remembrance of eating a fresh peach was when I was about 9 or 10.  I went with my grandparents to their river cabin for the weekend.  We stopped at a roadside stand and bought peaches to take with us.  I remember sitting on the swing and bending over because the peach so juicy and the juice ran down my chin and hands.  

Hmm, hmmm!  Sweet summer!

When I was pregnant with my daughter, I craved peaches - I could not get enough! Lucky for me, it was this time of year so I could pretty much eat all I wanted. I would walk into the market, and they would laugh because they knew what I was coming for.

Hmm, hmm!  Sweet summer!

My last memory involves my father-in-law.  The last year of his of life, my mother-in-law was in a nursing home with Parkinson's Disease.  Because they lived next door, he ate dinner with us most nights.  He was always thankful for whatever I cooked, and he always ended the dinner with, "Good dinner!"  Peach pie was one of his favorites, and I enjoyed making them for him because I knew he was so appreciative.  I loved him and miss him dearly, and today my thoughts were about him.

Hmm, hmm!  Sweet summer!  Now that is a "peachy" celebration!

Have a wonderful week and may you have many celebrations!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Thursday Thoughts

If something is not impossible, then there must be a way to do it. 

~Sir Nicholas Winton

Sunday, July 6, 2014

The Halfway Point for Must Read in 2014

Back in January I came across a tweet from Carrie Gelson at There's a Book for That.  A group of readers was making a list of books that must be read in 2014 - because they were not read in 2103.  My list of must read books can be found here.

Here it is July and I am at the halfway point of my Must Read in 2014 list.  During this second quarter of the year, I read 6 books bringing me up to 14 out of the 28 books on my list.  I guess you could say I am right on track!

It would be hard to pick a favorite out of these eight, but all of them are amazing choices for middle grade students.  In the captions, I have written why I enjoyed these books.

Loved this fantasy, which is a genre I typically
do not enjoy.
Loved this book for its appeal to boys.  

Loved this book because of the way
Valerie Hobbs "wrapped it all up" in the end.
This book reminds me Wonder and
Out of My Mind - how can I NOT like it!

Loved the tangle of story lines
and how Lisa Graff pulled everything together.
The cake recipes are a bonus!
Loved the format of writing the story through
journal entires and the relationship
between Ratchet and her dad.

Happy Reading!