Liebster Award for Blogging!

I am so touched! Alicia (also known as The Elementary Professor) nominated me for a Liebster Award! This blows my mind because I’m shocked that someone is actually reading my little blog.  This is an award that is given to new bloggers by other bloggers, and in order to accept it, I have to answer some questions that Alicia came up with.  This is great really, because I’ve talked a lot about my classroom, but I haven’t really shared much about myself.  

Here are the questions:
1- What is your favorite subject to teach and why?
I love language arts! I’m a huge advocate for the whole language approach, so I incorporate literacy into everything that my class does. When I see a preschooler’s face light up when they read their first words, or write their name for the first time, it makes every minute of hard work worthwhile.  This is why I became a teacher, and it’s still my absolute favorite thing about teaching.

2-  When you were a kid, did you already know you were going to be a teacher?

Nope, I actually never wanted to be a teacher.  When I was younger I wanted to be a Marine Biologist and then an Interior Designer.  By the time I got to college I had decided that I wanted to work with non-profit organizations.  My degree is in Human Development and Family Studies, and while I was in college I was a camp counselor and worked for  a before and after school program at a local Montessori school.  After graduation the school offered me a long-term sub position in one of their preschool classrooms.  I fell in love with the students and the work, the rest is history.

3-  If you could have a shopping spree at any one store, what would it be?
That is a very tough question, I LOVE to shop.  I think that I would say Target, because I can find a little bit of everything there, and it’s always really cute! 

4- What do you do to make yourself relax on weekends and breaks?

I love to sleep in, if I can squeeze an extra hour or two I definitely will. This is what I look forward to the most on my days off!

5-  If you have a family and teach full time, I’d love a tip about how to balance it all.  Beyond being good at scheduling…I’m already a bit crazy about that?

I teach at a child care center, so I’m with my students from 9am until 6pm.  This is part of the reason that I don’t have children yet, I’m not sure that I’m ready to come home to kids after spending all day with them.  On top of working full time, my husband and I both have our own small businesses, we barely get to see each other, let alone our dog!

6-  What is your favorite thing to do at home?

I love to bake, if I can steal an afternoon to myself I will spend it baking.  I’ll try any recipe at least once, but cookies are my favorite because I can split up a batch and give them away, then I’m not stuck eating them all myself.  I also love to decorate sugar cookies, and before any holiday you can find me spending hours piping intricate designs onto my cookies.  

7-  What is your must have food or drink when you’re in for a long session of planning/grading, etc….

I am a Starbucks addict.  I try to keep it reasonable – three or four days a week is acceptable right?! If I have a ton of work that I have to get done I will park myself at Starbucks until I finish it all. It worked for me in college and it works for me now. My favorite drinks vary by the season and the weather, I like to switch it up but if I could have a pumpkin spice latte all year, I totally would. 

8-  After school in your classroom, music or silence?

Music, definitely. I always have music on, I think Pandora is the best thing ever.  

9-What’s one of the scariest things you’ve ever done?

Open my own school.  The school that I taught at for 4 years closed in 2013, when it closed I partnered with two of my coworkers and we opened a non-profit Early Learning Center in January 2014.  It was a huge leap of faith, and a ton of work. I am learning something new everyday!

10- What is one of those teaching moments that you still laugh about and will forever retell?

I work with very young children, so I get to know their parents and families pretty well.  Most of my funniest stories have to do with students who have told my entire class things that their parents would probably prefer I didn’t know. 

11-  If you could meet 1 character from any book in real life, who would it be and why?  What would you with them?

growing up, my favorite books were the Princess Diaries Series by Meg Cabot.  Mia Thermopolis was the girl that I always wanted to be, she could care less what other people thought of her and she always did the right thing, even when doing the right thing wasn’t easy.  She was also slightly naive, and completely up on pop culture and celebrity news, which made her so real to 14 year old me.  I would love to hang out with her, yes, I would pick her over more classic literary characters, because I would feel completely comfortable hanging out with Mia, well except for the whole princess thing…

The next part of this award is that I have to list 11 random facts about myself, so here it goes:
1. I married my high school sweetheart. We started dating when we were 17 and have been married for three years.
2. I have a yellow lab named Allis, she’s my 90 pound vacuum cleaner. 
3. I have lived in Ohio my entire life, and I wouldn’t change it for the world. 
4. I love to quilt. I learned when I was in high school, and have been doing it ever since. When one of my friends gets married or has a baby they get a quilt to commemorate the big event.
5. Pizza is my absolute favorite food, I could eat it every day of the week (We’ve been known to have pizza four different times throughout the week).
6. My sister is a teacher too. She teaches kindergarten, so we are constantly sharing ideas and resources.
7. My husband and I are advisors for a local 4H Club. We were both in 4H when we were younger, and we met when we were counselors at 4H camp, so we love to be able to give back. 
8. I have a beautiful work space on our property. My husband renovated an old chicken coop, now it is my craft space/sewing area/office. It is my dream to be able to work there full time.
9. My sister and I graduated from the same University that my mom and my grandma graduated from. Bowling Green State University – Go Falcons!
10. My favorite color is purple, this is one fact about me that my students always remember!
11. My former co-teacher and I just submitted a proposal for a book and I am anxiously awaiting feedback from the publisher!

Now it’s my turn to nominate some amazing bloggers! Here are my picks:

The RV Classroom (The Learning Wagon)

Now my nominees get to answer my questions!
1. When did you know that you wanted to be a teacher?
2. What is your favorite thing about teaching?
3. Why do you blog and when did you start?
4. What is your favorite thing to do for fun?
5. If you were not a teacher, what would you be?
6. What is your favorite indulgence or guilty pleasure?
7. What is your favorite thing to watch on television?
8. Share one funny story from your teaching experience.
9. How do you keep learning fun?
10. What is your favorite holiday or special event to celebrate with your students (or family) and why?
11. What is one of your pet peeves? (It doesn’t have to be teaching related)
I can’t wait to learn more about all of you! For more information about the Liebster award, check out the official rules. Thanks again to Alicia – The Elementary Professor – for nominating me!

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