Friday, September 19, 2014

classroom tour

Normally teachers post "classroom tours" right around the first day of school.  I wasn't able to do that this year, though, because my school was renovated over the summer!  Our school looks great now, but getting everything set up was pretty hectic.  So now that we're 4 weeks into the year, my room is totally done and I'd like to do my (better late than never) classroom tour.  

Because of all the construction that was going on, we weren't able to get into our rooms to start working until a week and three days before the start of school.  Here's what my room looked like when I walked in on that fateful Friday:


I'm not going to lie- it was a hot mess in C103.  As you can see, there were desks along the walls and a mountain of boxes (all my stuff) in the center of the room.  I definitely had my work cut out for me.  After a LOT of work and many, many trips to various teacher supply stores, I'm in business!


Let's take a full-circle tour...

This is the wall right by my door.  I have my discipline hierarchy on the wall; a table for classroom logs, library and bathroom passes, a turn in tray, and tissues; and my bookshelf where we keep workbooks and folders for each of my three classes.

Next to the bookshelf, we have my desk!  The wall behind it is where I will post any information (bell schedules, school mission, tutoring days, etc.).  The folders underneath are for detention slips, homework club forms, and testing lab forms.

Here's my desk from another angle.  I spy cute pictures of Austie!

This is the front of the room.  I have a lovely SMARTBoard (that started working a few days ago) and a nice sized whiteboard.  You can also see my media computer on the far right.  This is how I display things on my SMARTBoard.

Closer up on my grid calendar:

The side of my room has a built-in cabinet and book shelf.  The shelves were the last things to go in our rooms, and I love the way they turned out.  So much space!  I use them to store our textbooks, dictionaries, and my classroom library.  The "bookworms" wall is a space where I post any books that my students finish during the year.

The back of my room has my big bulletin boards and a reading corner (blue chair and lamp).  The "Say What?!" wall is where I put all of our vocabulary words throughout the year, the "Great Work" wall is where I display student work, and my calendar wall is obviously where I put our calendar. 

I also have to mention our new desks.  Do you notice how there is not a bar on either side, so kids can get in their seats from the right or the left?  Very nifty!

Like I said, the first weeks back at school were c-r-a-z-y, but I think I'm finally settling in and finding my groove.  I like the way my room turned out, and I hope my kids like it too!

Have a great weekend!  BTHO SMU!

Sunday, September 14, 2014

our wedding video!

Austin and I got some very good news recently: our wedding "highlight video" is here!

After doing the happiest of happy dances, we watched it and were even happier!  Our videographer, Daniel Routh, is so awesome, and we love love love the way that he captured our day.  If anyone is looking for a videographer for their special day, we would highly recommend Daniel!  Here he is with his second shooter in the photo booth at our reception.  

(That's Daniel on the right, wearing a sombrero) 

One of the things we loved about working with Daniel (and Amanda too) is that they both got great footage of our day without being "in the way".  I've been to weddings before where it feels like the freaking paparazzi are there.  That's fine if that's what the bride and groom want, but it definitely wasn't what Austin and I were looking for.

Anyway, we are thrilled to share our highlight video with everyone.  I hope y'all like it because I think it's perfect!

Friday, September 5, 2014

10 things no one tells you about planning a wedding

1) You will spend an ungodly amount of money on stamps.

Save the dates, invitations, thank you notes, oh my.  Stamps get expensive, yo!  Especially for your actual invitations.  If you're doing traditional invites, those things are probably going to need a few stamps each.  It ended up costing us about $1.50 per invitation, and we sent out about 120 total.  I hope e-vites are socially acceptable by the time my kids get hitched.

2) Even if your parents are footing the bill, you will still spend money on wedding stuff.  Like, a lot of money.

Austin and I were so lucky that my parents could foot the bill for our entire wedding (thanks again, Jimbo and Sherbo!!).  However, we still had to buy other stuff that was wedding related.  New clothes and hair/make-up for the engagement pictures, the presents you buy for each other, "thank you" presents for shower hostesses, clothes and swim suits for the honeymoon, the actual honeymoon, a new dress/outfit for every party, shower, and the rehearsal dinner, and a million other random things.  

3) One (or more) of your vendors that you originally book (or something else) will probably change before your actual wedding day.

Everyone tells you that "something will go wrong" or that you "might have a little hiccup" before or on the big day.  It's my opinion that something will most likely change over the course of your wedding planning.  This may be something you choose to change, or it may be something that's beyond your control.  For example, the lady that was supposed to do my hair and make up had a family emergency two days before our wedding and had to cancel.  Luckily, she was very professional about it and arranged for one of her friends to replace her.  It was definitely stressful, but it all turned out ok!

4) No matter how early you start planning things, you will still be scrambling at the end to get it all done.

Austin and I were engaged for almost 2 years.  However, I was still working on the seating chart the morning before our wedding.  As much as I tried to do things early and stay on top of everything, there is just SO much that has to get done right at the end.

5) People who RSVP as a "yes" won't come.

My wedding coordinator mentioned something about this, but I really didn't think it would happen.  Sure enough, people didn't show up for one reason or another even though they said they would be there.  The seating charts had already been printed, and their food and drinks had already been paid for, but oh well.  You just have to realize that things come up and try not to stress out about it!

6) There is a tax for EVERYTHING, and it's expensive.

Don't budget based on the original numbers you are given.  Always estimate more for that damned tax.

7) Your apartment/house will look like a wedding shop and a UPS store had a baby and then that baby blew up all over the place.

If you're lucky enough to live in a house, devote a guest room or large hall closet to house all of the "wedding stuff".  If you live in a one bedroom apartment like me, just be prepared for chaos.  Between all of the wedding junk (pictures, sparklers, invitations, gifts for the wedding party, the guest book, programs, the seating chart, random doo dads) and the gifts people send, you'll be out of room quick!

8) It's kind of awkward to be the center of attention at your shower(s).

Your wedding shower is really fun, but it's pretty awkward to be in the hot seat while everyone is watching you open presents.  I felt kind of like some weird museum exhibit that could only be viewed by women in uncomfortable shoes, sipping mimosas and filling out their bridal bingo cards.

9) You will have to go to the stores where you registered a LOT to return stuff and fix the registry.

I'm not sure why, but we got a lot of repeat gifts, and our online registry was never a true reflection of what we actually had and still needed.  (I hear that's pretty common.)  I'm definitely not complaining about people buying us stuff (thanks again, everyone!), but I may or may not be on a first name basis with a few of the cashiers at Pottery Barn.  I tried to return things as we went along so our registries would stay as accurate as possible, but nothing was ever perfect, and that's ok!  

10) Once your wedding day actually arrives, it's best to just let everything go and enjoy your day!

Okay, I'm sure you've heard this before, but it's really true.  I was SO stressed and anxious for a good two weeks before our wedding.  I wasn't nervous about the whole "being tied to one man for the rest of my life" thing; Austin is my main squeeze, and I couldn't wait to be his wife.  Instead, I would find myself constantly checking things off in my head or wondering if I should email the groomsmen a schedule and packing list reminder just one more time.  Once our ceremony started, though, I just pulled an Elsa and let it go.  It was out of my hands, and guess what?  Everything went just fine!  It went incredibly, actually.  Austin and I had a blast, and I think our guests enjoyed themselves too.  It was the perfect day, and I'm not just saying that.