Five for Friday

 Yay for Friday!  This week has been so long.  I got hit by a cold and had horrible congestion for the beginning part of the week so I've just been ready for the week to be over.  I'm linking up with Kacey at Doodle Bugs Teaching for one of my favorite linky parties.  Click the link to join the fun and share 5 random things from your week,
 My mom sent me this video during break.  It has been on my list to share on my blog because I think it is an important message.  It is called Look Up - all about looking up from our phones and the things we miss when we are so connected to our phones.  This totally spoke to me as I know I am so guilty of having my phone out all the time.  It is my entertainment when I'm trying to get my steps in during the day, it is my connection to other adults during the day, it is my go to to find information, it helps me keep tabs on my business...it is so hard to disconnect.  I'm trying hard and focusing right now on not checking Instagram when my girls are awake.
 Sadly, naptime came to an end for my almost 4 year old during break.  She wasn't taking them daily even though she was in her room trying every day.  She would go a few days without and then crash for a day.  But we were noticing that because it took her so long to wind down and finally fall asleep, she was sleeping too late into the day.  Then when we would put her in bed for the night, she would still be up at 9, 10 sometimes 11.  Not good!  I knew I still needed that time to get stuff done and little sister still needs her nap so we switched to quiet time.  I figured it was really no different than what we were doing before except that now she had permission to be up and playing quietly in her room.  I created some quiet time boxes for her to play with each day.  These were actually easy to put together.  I bought the bins at Costco and added some vinyl for the days.  Then I went through the house and added things we already had but were new to her.  I used some of her Christmas presents that were quiet.  I pulled out books out of my teaching boxes that she hadn't read before.  I reused some old busy bag activities that she hadn't played with in awhile.  Then I saw where I had gaps and bought a few maze books and I spy coloring books to add to those days.  So far it is working well.  I had to remind her a few times that she can't come out to ask for help (especially when it means calling me from the top of the stairs right outside her sister's room).  But overall she has been staying in her room and quietly playing for 3 hours each day!!!
 And sometimes quiet time turns into naptime and she falls asleep holding the activity she was working on with the light on!!
And I need to have a little mommy bragging moment.  She is finally swimming without a flotation device during swim class.  We've had her in classes off and on since she turned one and it is finally all clicking!  I'm so proud of how well she is doing this session.  She took this same level in the fall and it wasn't great.  She was the youngest in that group and you could tell.  The maturity wasn't there, she was always being silly and fooling around.  Now after a few months off, lots of lectures from her embarrassed mommy and being one of the oldest in this new group, she has really taken off.  Less silliness and more swimming.  

As 2015 ended and 2016 began, I kept seeing so many different ideas for changes people were making - words to focus on, new planners to use, resolutions to keep, etc.  I always have a stressful few days thinking I need to change everything, I need to try these different things.  And then I calm myself down and realize that I like some of the things I already do to keep organized - my business binder, my family calendar, my daily calendar to help with my scrapbooking.  I had been seeing a lot about bullet journaling and I was intrigued.  But I knew I didn't want to get rid of some of the things I was already doing and it seemed pointless to add another calendar to the mix.  So after looking at some pictures, reading some posts and watching a video about bullet journaling, I decided to make it my own.  I'm doing bullet journaling for my weekly to do list.  Hopefully this helps keep me focused for the week since I tend to start on something, think of something else and then start working on that.  I made some stickers on my silhouette for the top with things I need to do every week so I don't have to rewrite it on my list each time.  So far I'm loving it.  I'm not completing everything on the list but that's okay.  I'm also going to use some of the pages in the back for other lists that I need in addition to the weekly journal.  Do you use a bullet journal to stay organized?  I created a Pinterest board that I'm building that is devoted to planners, journaling and overall organization.  You can check it out HERE.  
 My husband and I got back into reading during Christmas break.  We are trying to make an effort go to bed early so we can read before we fall asleep.  My husband got a tablet for Christmas and tried e-reading for the first time.  We both like it, though we love actual books too.  It is just nice to be able to read in bed without a light and holding a book up.  So we will continue to bounce back and forth between digital and old school!  I am currently reading Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult.  I love her books even though they are a lot more deep and intense than the normal chick lit that I enjoy.  This took me awhile to get into but I love it and am close to the end.  It takes place in an elephant sanctuary so there has been so much background info about elephants...they've even started showing up in my dreams at night!!
I also just downloaded Three Wishes by Liane Moriarty to read next.  We are headed out of town this weekend to visit family so I figured a digital book would be a good plan.  I've heard great things about this author but the other popular titles were checked out of the library so I went with this one which I guess was her first novel.  What are you reading?  Anything good (but not too sad, depressing or scary) that I should add to my list?
It is definitely winter here in Michigan with snow on the ground and cold temperatures.  I added a few new winter products to my store.  First up is Winter ELA task cards.  Each card has a simple winter sentence that has errors in it.  Students need to find the errors and rewrite the sentences.  The errors include punctuation, capitalization, contractions, sight words, and verb tense.  
I also just added another game in my Spin and Add Bump series.  Now it includes a winter version!  There are 10 different games that allow students to practice their addition facts.  And it is a reason to use those super cute Target erasers that I can't stop buying!

Any plans for the weekend?  We are headed to Kentucky to visit family for a long weekend.  Now if only the laundry and packing would do itself, we'd be ready to go.

1 comment

  1. Have a safe trip Sara! Your quiet boxes are such a great idea! I am reading "Dumplin'" by Julie Murphy! It's a great book about a young girl that is overweight and her beauty pageant sponsoring mom! I think it's a teen book, but well written!
    Carol
    Teachers Are Terrific!

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