Saturday, July 28, 2012

Summer Olympics FLASH SALE!

Good morning, friends! Kerri here...
Okay, who watched the Opening Ceremonies last night? I DID!! It was AWESOME! I saw this video on Yahoo this morning and I couldn't resist! The USA swim team is ADORABLE!! Check out Ryan Lochte blowing a kiss! (rawr!! Hottie!)

In honor of today's swimming competition (already ready to be recorded on my DVR, thank you very much!!), how about a little FLASH sale on my Summer Olympics Packs, just in time for back to school!! (Click on pics to head over to my TPT store)

Go, team USA!!

XOXO Kerri 

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Tell Me More Linky!

Good Evening, friends! Kerri here...

Well, I think most of you know me pretty well, since I don't really hold back much on the little ole blog here, and I had so much fun reading everyone else's "Tell Me More" posts that I thought I would play along, BUT I am going to try to tell y'all SUPER obscure facts about myself. Ready??
Here we go...

I HATE sports. HATE them with a capital H. Hate to watch them (well, except the Olympics), hate to play them, hate to hear about get the idea. My poor poor husband :(.
For example, we went to the Angels game on Tuesday and by the 2nd inning, I was DYING of boredom. DYING!  I couldn't believe I had to endure 7 MORE INNINGS...bleahhhh.

I LOVE LOVE LOVE chips and salsa! Add some cheese on top (my 2nd love!) and I am in HEAVEN! I could eat chips and salsa ALL DAY LONG...however, I am a bit of a salsa snob. It can't be too spicy and it really needs to be fresh. I mean, I'll eat the bottled stuff in a pinch, but homemade or restaurant salsa is the BOMB!

I am O.B.S.E.S.S.E.D. with the smell of Scotch Tape, and it MUST be the Scotch tape brand-Magic Tape preferred. None of this bargain basement brand tape for me. The smell of scotch tape reminds me of Christmas and school and birthdays, all wrapped up in scotch tape. My family and friends think I'm a TOTAL freak, but I just can't help it!!

I have an affinity for all things British, probably because I have visited there many times in my life and one of my oldest and dearest friends is British. I love their tea, their accents, period movies set in Britain, Harry Potter, old castles, the Underground, etc. etc.

I LOVE to read, and have been an avid reader since I was a little girl. One of my daughters takes after me, the other...not so much! One of my favorite books of all time is called "Pillars of the Earth" by Ken Follett. Surprise, surprise-it takes place in medieval England and is about the building of a cathedral! The Pillars of the Earth movie, however, STANK. Big disappointment!

Keith Morrison is my all time FAVORITO news anchor on Dateline (one of my favorite shows!) I have a huge crush on his storytelling skills. That man could read me the phone book ALL. DAY. LONG. He is also Canadian, which makes him even better, since I, myself, am half Canadian (thanks to my Pops!)

I have a penchant for talking in accents, and I can do a pretty mean Skippy Jon Jones (best books EVER!!) hispanic accent, along with a British accent, and a New Yorker accent, but Lindsay is the one who can do a great Indian accent. I am still working on that one! I also got this skill from my Pops, and I passed it on to my daughter Katie! This comes in quite handy when I am reading to my kidlets at school!!

Besides my hubs (obviously!), this guy is my number one...
I LOVE him and all of his movies! He makes me swoon. My favorite movies of his are the Sherlock Holmes movies-they are RAD! And, again, British period movies!!

I have a HORRIBLE habit of biting my nails, and I CANNOT STOP. I have bitten my nails since I was a little girl. I think it stems from my parents divorce-no seriously! Half of the time I don't even realize I am doing it! GROSS...(I REFUSE to include a picture of this dismal fact!!)

disclaimer...this is NOT me!

My idea of working out is A) Yoga-I am loving it more and more!! and B) running on the treadmill in our playroom in the dark with 2 fans pointed at me and a movie playing (preferably one with Robert Downey, Jr.!!) Can you tell I do not LOVE to work out??  :)

Last one, I promise. 

I am like a Superhero in the fact that I have a source of power and I ABSOLUTELY CANNOT TEACH WITHOUT THE FOLLOWING 2 THINGS...


That's right! Lipstick and gum I must have at all times. My kids know it and we call it my source of power! HA!! The lipstick obsession I got from my mom, and the gum, well, I just NEED it!! My lipstick and gum even live in a special pouch in my purse, and one time I left it somewhere in the classroom and one of my littles brought it to me and said, "Here's your source of power!" CLASSIC!!

Okay, if I haven't scared you away yet, then thanks for reading!! Obviously, I am a wife, mother, Christ follower, and teacher first and foremost, but all of my silly little quirks are what make me "ME"!!

I love you guys!! Thanks for following, supporting, and being our bloggy friends! You guys ROCK!
 XOXO Kerri B

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Christmas in July, PEEPS-EXTENDED!!!!

Hi again! Kerri here (again!)...
TPT is back up and running!! YAY!! Man, having it down all day was like a crack addict not having her crack-you know what I mean?? Because of the wonkiness on TPT all day, my Christmas in July SALE will run through tomorrow-we'll call it a Boxing Day in July Sale-HA!! 

I am linking up with Blog Hoppin' for an exciting event...
Thank you Babbling Abby for the ADORABLE graphic!!

All of my seasonal products (Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Valentine's Day, St. Patrick's Day, Easter, Earth Day, etc.) will be on SALE, so stock up for the coming school year!!! Whoo Hoo! 
Please note: the Teachers Pay Teachers site will be down from midnight until 8:00 a.m. est, so plan accordingly!! 

Merry Summer Christmas, friends!

XOXO Kerri B

Click on the Blog Hoppin' graphic to link up your own TPT store!!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

88 cent teacher goodies and a pretty awesome FREEBIE!

Hi Blogging Buddies! Kerri here...
Happy Sunday! Can you believe we are coming up on the last week of July?? NOOOO! Where is my summer going?? I have to admit, I have been going into my classroom just a little bit here and there to clean and organize all of the areas that I neglected and ignored during the school year. It is a boring job, but has to be done, you know what I mean??
I have a pretty AWESOME FREEBIE for you promised, but first, I wanted to share about these WICKED COOL teacher supplies that the sweet people from sent me. These supplies are only 88 cents at Walmart! Even less than the Dollar Spot at Target, I'm just saying! :)
Take a looksie...

hall passes, notepads, and postcards!

correcting pens, flashcards, and stamps!

nametags, erasers, classroom decor, and bins (can't have enough bins!!)

file folders, bulletin board stuff, and borders (I am DYING over that owl!!)

This is good stuff, people! Super cute, colorful, and you can't beat the price! Here are the links if you would like to learn more!!
Facebook           Twitter        YouTube       Pinterest

Okay, onto your FREEBIE! Remember I promised a FREEBIE to go along with this little Alphabet Mystery Puzzles unit of mine?? P.S. Thank you SOO MUCH to those of you who already purchased it. I think your kidlets will LOVE solving the "mystery!" 

Well, I made a Color Words edition and it is 100% FREE! Here is the cover...

Here's what you get...

Alrighty then! Click on the above cover picture to download!! I'll be back later this week with an "Ode to Mod Podge!"

XOXO Kerri

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Introducing . . . the Wee Ready Writers!

Happy Thursday folks!

Is anyone else out there besides me so sad that July is more than halfway over? This summer is going by WAY. TOO. FAST. As it always does, I suppose.  Here's a glimpse at what we have been up to with the little man the past few weeks . . .

We had a great 4th of July - even Jack was feeling patriotic! :)

Last weekend we were off to Lake Arrowhead with friends.  This trip has become an annual tradition and started when we were all newlyweds who decided to go camping.  Now it involves a two year old and three almost one year olds, as well as truckloads of diapers, bottles, and baby toys . . .and it is still so much fun!

Here is a group shot of all the little guys on the trip.

We also took Jack to the beach a few weeks back.  Needless to say, he was not impressed with the icky sand, nor the cold, salty water.  Blech.

Lots of memories at this beach - it was where we were married three years ago!

And finally, when we are not out and about we have been spending MOST of our time at home playing a new game called Let's-Take-Everything-Out-Of-Every-Drawer-And-Basket-And-Cupboard-And-Put-It-All-Over-The-Floor.  Its very fun . . . at least for one of us, that is.

The thing that I am REALLY excited to share with you folks tonight is my brand spanking new Wee Ready Writers - Writer's Workshop Kit.  Check it out! (Click preview image for larger view.)

This project all started when I saw Mrs. Phippen's "Writer's Eyes" bulletin board on Pinterest and I KNEW I had to use it in my classroom next year.  I have been wanting to beef up my Writer's Workshop and was looking for inspiration.  I loved the idea of encouraging students to use their "Writer's Eyes" not only to look at their own writing, but to analyze writing in the world all around them.  For my kindergarteners, I was hoping to find some sort of visual aides that would assist them in mastering the essential writing elements - but I could not find anything that worked!

Soooo  . . . the Wee Writers were born!  These nine characters not only have "Writer's Eyes", but they each remind students of ONE of the important elements of writing. 

For example: Movin Marvin is the Wee Writer that reminds us that all good writers write from left to right.  Tracy Spacey reminds students that words must stand alone with spaces to seperate them.  In addition to having a poster for each Wee Writer character, each one also has a catchy poem and an example poster of what their writing element looks like for students. 

In my kindergarten Writer's Workshop in the first few weeks of school I will begin with the Wee Writer Indy Illustrator and first teach my students about how to add details in their illustrations, work quietly in their writing journals until "the ding dong dings", and then move on to labeling illustrations, then writing sentences, etc. over the course of the year. These Wee Writer characters help to break down the natural progression of writing that develops in kindergarten and that is so unique to this grade level.

For more advanced writers, in a first grade class, for example, these characters could be reviewed the first few weeks of the school year and then used altogether as students work on proofreading, writing "juicy sentences", and refining their writing with their "Writer's Eyes" using a checklist of these adorable characters! 

I hope you all head over to my TPT store HERE and check out this great kit of resources. What a fun way to get your kiddos excited about writing next year! 

Well, that's it for now!  I am off to bed to dream about all those perfectly constructed sentences my kidlets will be writing next year! :)

Night folks! Signing off for now.


Sunday, July 15, 2012

A Making Words FREEBIE..and Back to School Words!

Hiya Peeps! Kerri here...
Happy Sunday! I have been working away on some new units, and I have a FREEBIE for all of you!
Here is my newest Back to School Writing Pack! Here are some sneak peeks...

This unit goes along with all of my other writing packs, if you have bought any of those in the past. You can check it out by clicking either picture above! :)

I also made a little FREEBIE to go along with my "A Year of Making Words" unit, seen here...

Here's the FREEBIE! A little making words activity for when we all go back to school for the word "playground!" Click below to go right on over to TPT and download it...

I will also be back later this week with a FREEBIE for my Alphabet Puzzles Unit....I'm thinking color words, perhaps?? :)

How much longer til you all go back to school? Anyone on the home stretch yet?

Later, Gaters!! :)

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Crate Seats-Part Deux...and Alphabet Mystery Puzzles!

Happy Thursday, Peeps! Kerri here...
Dude! It is totally raining outside! That NEVER EVER happens in So. Cal during the summer! It is all muggy and warm, and sprinkly! We love it! It reminds us of when we went to Florida (such good times!!)
I have 2 quickies to share tonight...Exhibit A: Re-vamped crate seats!

TADA! Okay, let me back the train up. Last summer, I saw Rachelle's post about her crate seats and I knew I had to have them. So, my sweet friend Amy and I made 6 of them, and they were soooo CUTE!

Cutey McCuteness!

Around my reading table. They were perfect!

Fast forward a whole school year, and look at my poor crate seats now....
Dirty dirty dirty! And look at that hole! Probably from scissors, those little turds!!

Dangit! Again, probably scissors or maybe from a pencil! Aaargh!

These are vinyl, peeps! They had all sorts of colors at Jo-ann's in vinyl, and yes, it is more expensive, (I had a coupon and my 15% off teacher card, thank goodness!) but much easier to keep clean and MUCH more durable. I had to sacrifice the cute fabric in lieu of durability. :( 
BUT, look at how well it goes with my Dots on Turquoise decor from Creative Teaching Press!!
Sooo excited to get back in my class and see how they look! :) If you make crate seats, I highly suggest you make them in vinyl~

Okay,  here's Exhibit B: My newest unit on TPT-Alphabet Mystery Puzzles!! Take a look...
I CANNOT wait to have my class do these alphabet mystery puzzles! I just know my class is going to go bananas over these centers, and it will be a fabulous way to reinforce the spelling patterns that we are learning through the year!!  Here's what you get...

What’s Included:
cvc alphabet puzzles-set 1:  bat, leg, mix, hop, cub, jam, red, wig
cvc alphabet puzzles-set 2: fog, nut mad, hen, pin, rot, bug, cap
ccvc alphabet puzzles: crab, swim, drip, frog, flat, stop, sled, plum
cvcc alphabet puzzles: mask, pond, help, nest, silk, pond, ramp, wink
digraph alphabet puzzles: bath, shut, whip, rich, thin, fish, whiz, chip
magic “e” alphabet puzzles: gate, pine, rose, cube, bake, ride, note, huge
Set of “super star” lower case letters to spell out mystery puzzles
2-sided recording sheets for each set of puzzles
-spell the word and illustrate
-Write 5 “juicy” sentences using 5 of the mystery words   

Directions for using this center:
laminate and cut out alphabet puzzles and lower case letters for durability. Place each set in a baggy. Instruct students to spell out each mystery word with the star letters by using the beginning sound of each picture and placing the corresponding letter in the space underneath each picture. After spelling each word, students can record their work on the provided worksheet. To extend this activity, students can use 5 of the mystery words to write 5 juicy sentences! Your kiddos will love it!

I'll be back soon with some FREEBIES, friends!! Hope your weekend is FANTABULOUS!

Monday, July 9, 2012

Yoga, Matryoshka Dolls and Making Words!

Happy Monday, Peeps! Kerri here...
Remember how I told you I was on the hunt for a yoga outfit that didn't cost me $1000, like they do at LuLuLemon? (Sorry, LuLuLemon, but your prices are RIDICULOUS!) Well, I found one at TJ MAXX! I heart that place! However, even though I found one, the experience was ALMOST as painful as trying on bathing suits. Seriously, I hated it! 

I did persevere, despite the awkwardness and hideousness of it all, got my yoga gear on, and then went to my first yoga class at the gym. O.M.G. That class, apparently, was for pros! I was SOOOO sore the next day and to top it off, my teenage daughter came with me, and told me afterwards that I embarrassed her. What the Heck! I wasn't that out of place!

 I'm not giving up, though! I'm going today, even if I am curled up in the fetal position all day tomorrow with sore muscles! And maybe today I'll make my daughter hold hands with me when we walk in! That'll show her! HA!

Did you know that I love Matryoshka Dolls? It all started 5 years ago at the OC Fair, when my girls each picked one out. Since then, it has been our tradition to get a new doll every summer when the fair comes, and it's coming this Friday!! I'm so excited!! The day after Big Brother starts-YIPPEE!! (Wait, did I just say that out loud? Oops!) 

I also uploaded my newest unit to TPT-A Year of Making Words
Do your kids go bananas like mine do when they get to make little words out of big words? Mine go Cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs every time we do this center! Here's a little looksie...
This Unit comes with 10 making words activities, one for every month of the year, PLUS recording sheets, AND 3 extra activities if you want to extend the Making Words experience with your chitlins!

What’s Included:

  1. August/September Making Words-appleseeds
  2. October Making Words-frankenstein
  3. November Making Words-Thanksgiving
  4. December Making Words-gingerbread
  5. January Making Words-snowflakes
  6. February Making Words-valentines
  7. March Making Words-leprechaun
  8. April Making Words-jellybeans
  9. May Making Words-graduation
  10. June Making Words-summertime
  11. Recording Worksheets for each month’s Making Words Center
  12. Optional worksheets to make recording sheets 2-sided:
-Story Writing and Illustration using the words made from the monthly word
-Sentence Writing using the words made from the monthly word
-Real/Nonsense Word sort using words made from monthly word
Directions for Assembling Making Words Center:
  1. Laminate and cut apart words for durability. Store words in baggies.
  2. Have students work individually or in pairs to make little words using the monthly thematic word, and then record their words on the provided monthly worksheets.
  3. Extension activity: Run worksheets 2-sided, including one of the optional worksheets on the back of the Making Words worksheet. 
  4. This center can also be done whole class using a document camera or projecting the monthly word onto a screen, with the teacher and students working together to make words using the monthly thematic word.
I plan on teaching my kiddos how to "Make Words" the first couple months by doing this activity whole group under the document camera or in a pocket chart, and by November, I think they will be good to do this activity independently! I don't know what it is that makes them so excited about the Making Words center, but my kids SERIOUSLY go nuts for it! 

Alrighty, Peeps! I'm out! Gonna go put on my Yoga outfit and prepare myself mentally for the awkwardness and muscle pain...Do any of you do Yoga? Making Words? Are you obsessed with Big Brother Matryoshka Dolls or the Fair? I'd love to know your thoughts!! 
Namaste, friends!

Friday, July 6, 2012

Graduation and Summer Relaxation!

Hello folks!  Its me . . . the slacker half of the Bits and Bobs! 

What can I say . . . the last week of school was a blur and on the VERY last day of school I got sick, said goodbye to my kiddos, I checked out of my room, went home, and turned into "I'm-on-vacation-and-you-are-lucky-if-I-actually-get-dressed-today" Lindsay.  Its not pretty folks. NOT PRETTY. 

Soooo . . . lots to share from the past few weeks.  First off - my kidlets had a real "official' graduation with caps and diplomas and everything!  They were so darn cute!  I, on the other hand, was a mess.  I tend to be a  . . . how should I put it . . . basically, I'm a nervous sweater.  As in I get sweaty, not the cardigan sweater.  So with all the microphone talking, making sure my kidlets didin't fall off the back row of the risers, etc. etc. I was a sweaty mess.  And then we took pictures. 

I'm sure I looked greeeeeeeeeat!  ;)

Anyhow, here are some pictures from the last day that I remembered to snap:

All my kiddos got memory books as their goodbye gift from me.  They are a LOT of work, but the kids LOVE looking back at the photos of all we did over the year!

Hanging up for the occasion was our kinder graduation portraits in cap and gown (idea from Little Kinder Warriors).  They just turned out so darn cute!

On the kiddos' desks were all their graduation "goodies": a framed picture of them in their cap and gown, their memory book, and our completed America book.  (More to come on that in a later post, I promise!). 

Since school's been over, I have been in full-on stay-at-home-mommy mode . . . . I have been organizing closets and old clothes for storage.  (Check out Jack's super sweet loafers that no longer fit!)

I have been cleaning up after my little "helper" (whose new favorite game it to empty every drawer and basket in the house).

We can often be spotted cruising the neighborhood. In the convertible, of course!

We have also been swimming every chance we get, including Mommy and Me classes!  (Note: That is not mommy's hairy chest in photo below!)

And finally, I have been doing some fun Pinterific crafts around the house!  I made these cute lil pinwheels for the Fourth of July festivities . . .

. . . and also this half of a yarn-wrapped wreath. 


Yep, I waited until the night before the Fourth, and after a whole episode of The Bachelorette this was as far as I got!  Oh well, guess I will have it for next year!!

Well, thats about it for now!  Hope you are all rested, reading a good book and laying poolside with a margarita in your hand!  Or just rested. :)