Friday, July 11, 2014

Five For Friday-July 11

I think I am having the busiest summer of my life!  Between coordinating a summer literacy program, building a new house, and trying to get some new products created, I hardly have had time to breathe!  But I had to take a few minutes to link up with one of my favorites, Five for Friday with Doodle Bugs Teaching!

As busy as I have been, I still take the time to at least read every night before I go to sleep, no matter how late it is.  I finished a really good book the other night called The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton.  

The story goes back and forth between three time periods...1900, 1975, and 2005 to unravel the mystery of why a small child was found abandoned on a ship travelling from England to Australia.  Just when you think you are going to find out the last piece of the puzzle, bam! Time jumps forward or back again, and you vow not to put the book down until you finish another chapter.  

I spent quite a bit of time this summer looking for picture books to use with the summer literacy program.  It is so hard to choose books just from seeing them online!  I went to a book store in the area to try to get a good look at the books first, and not one of them was available in the store!  Thank goodness for libraries!  I was able to request all of the books I was thinking of buying from the library first before I placed my orders online.  One of my favorite books that I ordered is Fireflies in the Night by Judy Hawes.  

It's written as a story but gives quite a bit of information about fireflies, why they light up, the history of people using them for light, and so on!  What a cute book!

I made a trip recently to IKEA to look for lighting for our new house.  (Talk about overwhelming!  How do you pick out lighting for every single room?!)  While we were there I picked up one of the necessities for starting my classroom in the fall.  I buy cardboard file boxes for my students to use to house all of their folders and spiral notebooks.  I have shelves they can put them on at the end of the day, and during the day they keep them on their desks.  You can see them on the desks in the picture below.

They are made of cardboard, so they aren't as sturdy as the plastic ones.  I have known some teachers who ask their students to bring in a file box that they purchase themselves, but then they are all different colors, styles, etc. and I wouldn't be able to stand looking at that!  If the students take care of them, they can last all year.  That picture is from March, and you can see that they are still in pretty good condition.  I have found that it helps to tape the bottom of the file boxes with some clear packing tape.  The best part about these boxes is the price!  

They come in packs of five for only $1.49!  Last year I think they were closer to $2 for the five pack.  A couple of my friends tried to get them towards the end of August, and they were all sold out.  So, don't wait too long to pick them up!

Besides lighting, another area that is a bit overwhelming right now is paint colors!

This is literally what my kitchen counter looks like right now!  My goal for this week was to have the color of every room identified...not gonna happen.

Last, but most fun, here are some photos of the progress on our house.  It is amazing how quickly things got moving these last few weeks after waiting so long over the winter.  

Here's where we were about three weeks ago.

Then we finally started to feel like we were actually building a house!

This is the view from our bedroom!  Love it!

Then we started to get walls!

Jake and Bonny are standing between their two rooms being their usual goofy selves.  The only normal looking one in the picture is Jake's girlfriend, Maddy!  Thanks for smiling, Maddy!

Next came the rafters...

Finally, we got windows!

Fun stuff, right?!  Check out all the other Five for Friday fun at Doodle Bugs Teaching! Have a great weekend!


  1. Wow, you are busy! We are heading to the library today, I am going to look for the books you recommended. I think I would like the Forgotten Garden and my boys love fireflies. Your house looks great, love your view!

  2. Wow building a house, I bet it is fun and crazy all at the same time. I am now really excited to see what it looks like when you are all finished!!! Hope it comes together quickly and smoothly!! I also now might have to make my hubs take me to Ikea. We have one about 30 or so minutes from where we live and I have never been.

  3. BEAUTIFUL VIEW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I also LOVE IKEA! We don't have one close to us in NC, but while we are in MI there is one close to my hubbys parents house!
    Mixing it up in Middle

  4. Wow , I absolutely love the view from your bedroom window in your new house! I have never built a house, but I remember when my friend was doing it, she said she got sooo tired of making decisions! I wish we had an Ikea in Oklahoma, but as far as I know the closest is in the Dallas area and I HATE the traffic!
    I'm Not Your Grandpa, I'm Your Teacher

  5. Building homes are exciting! My custom is a builder-it is a blessing and a curse. I'm one spoiled girl with all the extras we have in our house to make it our home!

    I love the cardboard box idea. I team teach and we have cubbies that my teammates' students place their items in after each lesson, but I like the box ideas for a clean crisp look and organization.
    Learn with ME in Grade Three

  6. How exciting to have a brand new home! My house is over 100 years old, full of charm, and lots of work... but it's mine :) I bought the file folders this year for the first time. I started using INB's last year and was frustrated when students would forget their notebook, lose a page,etc. I decided that I would require them to keep everything in the room this year. I thought about using a crate to store them by class but decided the individual files would be easier all 'round. Glad to hear of your experience and its success!


  7. LOOK AT THAT VIEW, Stephanie! Oh my goodness. You might as well build an extra room while you're at it. I'll be moving in. I'll be quiet. I promise. You won't even know I'm there! :)
    Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

  8. Wow!!!! You ARE busy! I can't imagine making all of those decisions! Your house looks amazing!

  9. Wow, what an amazing offer! Please and thank you! I am teaching 5th grade SS for the first time in my 22 year career and I would love this resource. I am subscribed, I will follow your blog as well as your TPT store!
    Thanks again,
    Wendy Rufa

  10. I am so impressed! You have so many great things going on here! Way to make it happen! I would love and appreciate the S.S. freebies. I look forward to following you on your blog and TPT.