Sunday, March 31, 2013

Reading Challenge: Rebecca Caudill 2014

Wow, two posts in one evening! I thought it would be less confusing to split them up. I have recently created two reading challenges for myself. The one I'll mention now revolves around the Rebecca Caudill Young Readers' Book Award. Essentially it's an award voted on by kids in grades 4-8 who have read one or more of the nominated books. My challenge (to myself) is to read all twenty nominees by the time school begins in August. I somehow managed to squeeze in four of them over break (hmmm, and how much grading do you suppose I accomplished? Ahem.), so I'm already 20% there! These are the ones I've tackled so far:

They were all enjoyable, but I especially recommend "The Lions of Little Rock," set in 1958 when the governor of Arkansas orchestrated the closure of all four Little Rock public high schools for the entire school year in order to avoid integration - amazing book!

The reason I began reading these books is that our school has a program called "Book Champs;" after a kid reads one of the books on the list, he or she discusses the book with a teacher who has also read that book as "proof." We weren't able to do that this year as the 2013 books didn't arrive until nearly the end of the first semester (thank you, unreliable funding), but all of the 2014 books are already in. I am determined to read them all so I can be available for any discussion! Also, because they are great books!

I'll discuss my other self-reading challenge at a later date - it's sure to please the nerdiest reader!

Still Going...

Spring Break 2013 is officially over; in just a short time I'll be setting out tomorrow's work clothes. I thought I'd share some of the work I was able to accomplish over break:

What you see are 2 1/2 more cabinets emptied, and placed on tables for the staff to pick and choose from before the contents are eliminated forever. An extensive collection of waffle irons, blenders, toasters, coffee makers, spatulas, etc, etc that are AT LEAST three decades old. Not to mention an enormous collection of glass - GLASS - serving ware. Who on Earth gives glassware to two dozen seventh graders in a small, contained space??

I keep inching closer and closer to getting these rooms under control. Maybe by the start of next school year, if I'm allowed in the building at all over the summer. Wish me luck!

Saturday, March 16, 2013


Oh Pinterest, you saucy minx, always giving me obvious ideas that I should've come up with years ago. Today I wrote out another round of teacher prayer cards, but this time I made my own envelopes! Here's the original pin, and here's how I did it:

Found this cute pack of cardstock at Michael's (half off! Didn't even have to use the standby 40& off coupon!):

Opened up a regular envelope the same size I wanted to make:

Traced the envelope onto the cardstock and cut:

Folded 'em up (I used a ruler to help make a sharper crease, didn't take a pic), and used double-sided tape to hold the flaps:

Ta-da! Created this stack in the time it took to watch "The Office" on the DVR! 

I wrote the addresses on labels and then slapped them on - worked great! I may never use a "real" envelope again! : )

Monday, March 4, 2013

Currently March

Another month, another "Currently" from Farley!

"How I Met Your Mother" - at the prompting of a co-worker back in May, I picked up this show on Netflix - I figured it was going into its last season, might as well. When they announced they would be running another season after this one, I was crushed. I want to know who the mother is and move on with my life already! But I've come this far... argghhh... (On a somewhat related note, hubby and I just finished the first season of "House of Cards" - AMAZING! Love this show, can't wait for the second season!)

Casimir Pulaski Day, a school holiday in my neck of the woods. Hooray for three day weekends! I promise you, I would work longer days four days a week to get a three-day weekend every week. Think about it: despite your best intentions, Saturday is usually a recovery day, Sunday is for grading/lesson planning/laundry/house cleaning/church/all sorts of miscellaneous chores, then boom! Back to work. With a third day you can actually get stuff done! Or, not get completely buried by a weekend getaway... : )

Another storm threat - these always disappear before hitting us. And not that I want to extend the school year, but I wouldn't snub my nose at a snow day. It's been two years since the last one, after all! Ideally, we would report for school tomorrow, run ISATs in the morning, then get sent home early... still get credit for the day, no nightmare ISAT make-ups, AND a little free time!

Grading. I don't mind the first-run stuff so much - it's all the darn make-up work!

Like/Love/Hate - I did break the rules a bit here. They were all supposed to be one word, but I couldn't (wouldn't?) do it. Dessert, mmmm. Had my first dessert this weekend since Thanksgiving weekend. I've been very good about cutting the excess sugar, but when you're at a lovely Italian restaurant, how do you turn down tiramisu? Disney World! Best vacation ever - I still think about it daily since we returned seven months ago. Daylight Savings Time in the spring means that it goes back to being pitch black when I leave the house in the morning. So much harder to get moving without natural light!