Friday, May 26, 2017

Friday Favorites: Gel Polish, Advancement Courses, Baby Coyote!

Happy Almost Summer!
It's my last day!!
Yesterday was the students' last day and today we teachers get to pack up and prepare for a big summer's nap!
As always, I'm linking up with ErikaNarci and Andrea
We're sharing our favorites from the week.
Grab their graphic and linkup with your favorites from the week, too.

Gel Polish

On Monday I shared all about Gel Polish. 
I enjoy going to get my nails done, but I love to do them myself. 

CND Shellac is my favorite brand. 
I recently ordered some new colors online. 
They arrived yesterday! 

It's hard to choose nail colors online, but I was very pleased with my choices.
Some of them even had shimmer, and I hadn't expected that!
Shimmer makes everything better!
To read all about doing your own gel manicures, click here


On Tuesday I liked up with Andrea from Momfessionals for a little Show and Tell!
We shared our best and worst vacations.

The countdown is on until we return to our BEST vacation spot. 

Marathon, Florida is a beautiful, relaxed spot in the Keys!
To read all about our first trip there and some highlights of our trip, click here.

Advancement Courses

I'm in the process of taking some online professional development courses.
We get little pamphlets from Advancement Courses from time to time. 
Luckily in the early winter one of my co-workers made the comment that some of the classes looked interesting. 
I pulled the pamphlet out of the recycling bin and found two that I wanted to take. 

Recently I just finished the poverty course. 
I'm currently still working on a class about reaching gifted students. 

If you're a teacher and looking for relatively easy and cheap graduate classes, go to Advancement Courses
Right now they are having a 15% off sale until June 2.
These courses are the cheapest that I've found. 

I plan to add one more to my to-do list over the summer. 
Here are the list of courses I have marked that I'd like to complete at some time:
  1. Building Meaningful Partnerships: Connecting Schools, Families and Communities
  2. Essential Teaching Practices for the 21st Century Teacher
  3. Achieving a Work-Life Balance in Teaching
  4. The Teenage Brain: How it Works
  5. Integrating Common Core Literacy Across Subjects
  6. Read Out! Building Students' Literacy and Love of Reading Through Read Alouds
  7. Writing Well or Good Writing? An Educator's Guide to Teaching Grammar
  8. Sustained Silent Reading
What are your top three choices?
I teach 8th grade language arts, so I'm trying to pick classes that relate somewhat to that. 


Last weekend we celebrated a friend's wedding at a local winery. 

Look how cute their favor was...
A wine glass with an airplane. 
The husband is a pilot in his spare time, and they love to take trips flying here and there.

How cute is their little tie on...

Baby Coyote

This is NOT one of my favorites from the week, but I had to mention it. 

On Monday I got a text from my husband saying he found a dog. 

With a quick glance at the picture I could tell it was NOT a dog.
 I confirmed it with my coworker to make sure I wasn't going crazy!

Lying alongside the road this little guy was found. 
Of course my husband would put him in the back of his work truck and bring him home. 

Thankfully he quickly found someone to take the coyote pup and nurse him back to health. 

Summer vacation has started!!
It's hard to believe that another year has passed.
Year number 5 is under my belt, and wow does it make me feel old!
I hope you enjoy this long weekend, and maybe it's even the start of summer for you too!
Have a great day!!!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Show and Tell: Travelogues

It's another Tuesday and another Show and Tell!

Today we're talking about our best and worst trips. 
I love traveling, so any place I get to go, I typically really enjoy. 
With that being said, today I'm sharing one of my favorite trips. 

Our Wedding in Marathon, Florida

I had never been to Marathon before our wedding. 
I actually hadn't even heard of it. 
Alex and I decided we wanted to have a beach wedding. 
I really envisioned a wedding beside blue water, so I got to researching where had blue water and stumbled upon Marathon. 

It was a simple computerized sketch online that drew me in. 
It was actually the very FIRST venue that I saw online. 
The venue was scheduled to open by January 2016, so the grounds weren't even finished for me to see exactly what it would look like.

We decided to live on the edge and book our venue. 
After researching A LOT online we found everything that we wanted. 

My mom, aunt and I fly out on a Wednesday morning. 
At the same time my dad and uncle left by car. 
They would drive my wedding dress over 1,000 miles to Marathon in ONE day!

We raced to the Hyatt Place
We loved the Courtyard (our wedding venue) and everyone was so courteous to us leading up to the big day, but there was a bit of a price gap, and since they were literally right next door we decided to stay at the Hyatt Place for the weekend. 

This place included spacious rooms, a continental breakfast and two pools. 
On top of that it had a restaurant, bar, pier and lighthouse out back. 

This was Pool #1 right outside of the hotel. 
This is where we hosted our after-rehearsal poolside get together. 
We ordered pizza, had drinks and passed out our welcome bags here. 

This is pool #2. 
The picture is looking out from the bar onto the pool and towards the lighthouse. 

It even had an outdoor chessboard. 

Alex arrived with friends on Thursday night. 
Well, by the time they got to the hotel it was more like 1 or 2 or 3 a.m.
We were outside playing chess, and it was HOT!
Like nearly 90 degrees when we should have been sleeping but instead were sweating to death outside. 

If you visit Marathon there are a couple of places that we really loved. 
One place was the Sunset Grille and Raw Bar. 
You can sit inside or outside. 
It's right on the ocean and even has a pool. 
The atmosphere is light and fun. 
You can ride in on your boat or by car and you get to see the 7 mile bridge while eating. 

Another place that Alex and the crew loved was the public beach-Sombrero Beach. 
There are so many beaches, but they had a great time swimming and playing football while I twiddled my thumbs so as to not get a sunburn and ruin our pictures!

The venue- Courtyard Marriott Marathon was amazing to us!
We were the first couple to get married, and they worked themselves to death. 

This is a look at the hotel from the front. 

This is the pool area. 

This is where we got married!

I hadn't ever been to the Keys before, so if you have the chance to go, I would. 
While I loved our wedding, I can't say I loved Key West itself. 
I'm not much of a drinker; I'd rather lounge by the beach or pool.

So, the time I had the least fun was while we were in Key West itself.
I will say they do have the biggest and best Key Lime Pie. 
Try some while you're there!
 But I love adventures and enjoying new cities, so the whole trip was a blast!

Traveling has been on my agenda for a year and a half.
My plan after obtaining my master's was to travel travel!
Now it's a bit hard since I'm a teacher, but I make the most of my summers.
So excited to read everyone's favorite trips and get some ideas for years to come!

Monday, May 22, 2017

Gel Polish

Happy Last Monday of the School Year!
 Today I'm doing a happy dance that the last week is here. 
As much as I'm excited, it's definitely bittersweet.
Some GREAT students will leave me and transition into a new environment in the high school next year. 
As much as I love some of them, they need to spread their wings and fly. 

Over the weekend I started prepping even more for SUMMER!
One thing about me is I love to have my nails done.
I've always enjoyed polishing my nails, but it's SO expensive to have them done regularly. 

A couple of years ago I got my own little light to do gel manicures myself!
This was the perfect little gift that my aunt had planned to get me, but my mom loved it too much for me, so she stole the idea and gave it to me instead. 
The best part is it is SO tiny. 

Have you seen these lamps before?

They work great but are just so big and bulky.
My aunt and I shared this one for a long time until I got my new one. 

This is all the bigger that my new lamp is. 
The top opens up, and there's just enough room to slide your fingers in. 

Now my aunt is a beautician and she bought it, so I'm guessing it's something you can only buy at salon based stores because I couldn't find it online. 

I love that it's so little that I can throw it in my purse or luggage and not be missing space. 

I really have been wanting some new colors. 
Just over a week ago my mom and I went and got Mani's and Pedi's before her cruise and to celebrate Mother's Day. 
Usually when I go to a salon I will try a facial or massage because I know I can do my nails myself, but I wanted to do something that we could both do at the same time and to get her beach ready, so I opted for the nail route

Well I was a bit hesitant of the polish they used. 
Gellish is one brand of gel polish that some salons use. 
I've used it before and wouldn't say I'm a fan. 

Gellish polish is much thinner than other polishes. 
When I used it before I had to do 3-4 coats of my color polish.
I asked the nail tech that last week and she agreed that it does take more coats, but she said she liked it better. 

At the time, in the salon, with just two coats my polish seemed to have taken full coverage. 
It was a cloudy, dreary day on that day. 
Unfortunately, when the sun came out you can see through my polish. 
Now most people probably wouldn't notice this, but I do. 
In addition, I showed my aunt my polish later on and asked if she could tell and she COULD!

So, I'm not a fan of Gellish, but I tend to love CND Shellac. 
My aunt will typically let me go with her to the supply store and pick out my colors, but she is just so busy that I hate bothering her. 
I put it on my to-do list to find someplace reasonable online to buy polishes. 

These three places made my list

The Nail Superstore

Beyond Polish

Sleek Nail

At the end of my investigation I found that Beyond Polish was the cheapest, and they offered a 20% off code. 

So, if you do your own gel manicures or if you want to start, go to Beyond Polish
I've tried some of the gel polishes at other stores like Sally's, but they just don't wear as long as Shellac.

Here's a little peak at some of my new colors.

Yes I love pinks, corals and oranges this time of year. 
Just a slight variation of each is great for me. 

Doing your own gel manicures is so simple. 
While I do get my nails done from time to time, I really love doing them myself!
If only I had the whole color variety at home that they have at the salon!

Friday, May 19, 2017

Friday Favorites: ONE MORE WEEK+ The Perfect Palette!

It's my last Friday with students!!
Now, I love my students dearly, but they are just done.
D. O. N. E.
So, we are going to celebrate this last Friday and look forward to our few days next week and then summertime!!
As always, I'm linking up with ErikaNarci and Andrea
We're sharing our favorites from the week.
Grab their graphic and linkup with your favorites from the week, too.

Teacher Appreciation Treats

This technically isn't from this week, but I kept forgetting to post it as one of my favorites. 
This is actually from two weeks ago!
Our student council gave each of the teachers a little treat each day during Teacher Appreciation Week. 
I'm really not sure when that week was. 
One place I read said last week and another the week before that. 
Anyway, we celebrated at school the week of  May 1-5.

One day we got "You're all that and a bag of chips!"

Another day we got "We donut we would do without you" and a bag of some donuts. 

On another day we got some chap-stick with "My teacher is the 'Balm'!"

Another time we got a thank you card.
It was so sweet to receive little gifts like this!


This week I linked up with Allie from A Gal Named Al on two different days.
On Tuesday I shared some shorter yet great workout videos.

 The 20 Minute Bikini HIIT Workout
The 5 Minutes Standing Flat Belly Workout

And then yesterday I shared what I've been cooking recently, which is Rhubarb.

Great American Mail Race

 Have you guys ever heard of The Great American Mail Race?

It's a little procedure where one school has their students fill out a survey/questionnaire about their school and community, each student writes a letter to a school in another state, and then they mail their items to that other school. 
Earlier in the year we received a letter from a student in Nebraska. 

A couple weeks ago we participated and my students wrote their own letters to students all across the country. 
The students were very questionable on if we would even receive any responses since school would be out in less than a month at the time that I sent the letters. 

At first I received some letters back that couldn't be delivered! Ahh!
Then, we finally got some replies. 
So far Idaho, Oklahoma and D.C. are on my favorites list!
I'm anxious to see if we receive any more!!

Granola Bars

On Monday I shared some of my favorite granola bars. 
I've been on the hunt for more healthful granola bar options. 

I'm still looking for some, but I've found one brad that does hold me over for longer. 
Zing Bars can easily be ordered online, and there are so many flavors. 
To find out more about them head on over to my post from Monday.

The Perfect Palette

If I had to guess I would say that last year when I was planning our wedding I started following 
It has a TON of wedding inspiration and ideas. 
There's a website, and I follow on Instagram. 
Earlier in the week I was scrolling through, not looking as intently since I'm no longer planning a wedding and something caught my eye. 

Often they feature wedding ceremonies and receptions. 
On this particular morning, it was about 4:15 while I was drying my hair I saw a local barn venue. 
I've actually been to a wedding at this quaint little barn.
Now I live in a pretty small area, so I was so shocked to see that something close to home would make it on this Instagram post where they have nearly 100,000 followers. 

Here is the picture that I saw. 

And some more images to make you smile

If you'd like to see the whole post, click here

This weekend starts our wedding weekends. 
This weekend we have one wedding at a local winery, and then the following weekend we have another wedding for one of my best friends at the same winery!
Have a great weekend!
One more week left of school...who's counting?!!