Sunday, November 30, 2014

Sunday Scoop

 Happy Sunday!

I'm linking up with Teaching Trio for a fun linky, Sunday Scoop!  Thanksgiving has come and gone and now it's time to start getting ready for the Christmas holiday.  I refuse to make the shift in my mind til after Thanksgiving.  Last year at this time we were still in the hotel hoping we'd get into our house before Christmas.  This year we are happily enjoying a much more relaxing season and are looking forward to a Christmas where we are not surrounded in boxes.  :)  Here's my scoop...

 I'm excited to make our advent calendar with the kids later today.  I bought a kit from Oriental Trading Company.  The kids are excited too!  Suri just asked if the elf is going to come this year.  I guess I had better look and see if we still have our elf.  We bought a Bahamian elf last year.  Not the typical Elf on the Shelf.  Ours just likes to hide and make a little mess.  Nothing too naughty.  :)  I also would love to start opening our boxes of Christmas decorations to start decking the halls. 

Every 3rd or 4th Sunday I serve in the toddler room at our church.  I teach the 2 and 3 year olds.  My son Levi is 3 so he loves it when mommy is working in his room.  I led an outreach ministry for foster children and families at my church back in Seattle.  It's nice to find a way to contribute and serve here in the Bahamas.  My hubby and I have plans to connect with one of the local orphanages here soon.  Stay tuned for updates on that...  What are you up to today??

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

A is for...

Today is another day of giving thanks.  I'm linking up with Blog Hoppin's week of T.H.A.N.K.S.  Click the picture below to join in the fun!

Today it's all about the letter A...
 I've shared before how much I love my Kindle Fire.  Without a public library here in the Bahamas, it has been my saving grace.  Last night was the first meeting of a book club I started.  We read Wild by Cheryl Strayed.  I made lasagna.  Everyone else brought the rest of the fixings.  We had wine.  What's a book club without a little wine?  :)  It was so much fun.  We actually did talk about the book too!  Next up for book club is Serena and The 13th Tale.  Lately I've read John Grisham's new book Lone Mountain, Jodi Piccoult's new book Leaving Time, and a couple series books by Linda Castillo and Nancy Naigle.  I've actually read some education books too.  My latest was Reading Reflex.  I used the program to help my daughter improve her reading over the summer.  What are you reading? 

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

H is for...

I'm back for the second day of the week of thanks linky hosted by blog hoppin.  Click on the picture below to join in on the fun!
Today is about the letter H..
 I love to laugh and love being around people who make me laugh.  Is there a better feeling in the world?  That pure happiness that comes from a good laugh?  I love seeing my children's sense of humor develop as well.  I love that they can make me laugh too.  I loved those moments in the classroom when a student of mine said or did something that make the whole class erupt in giggles.  So today I'm thankful for humor.  I hope you enjoy some humor this Thanksgiving with friends and family.  

Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 24, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving Week!
This week I am linking up with Blog Hoppin for a Week of Thanks blog hop linky.  Click the picture below if you want to join in the fun.

Today is about the letter T.
I am thankful for Thanksgiving.  I LOVE this holiday.  Maybe because my family always hosted Thanksgiving.  The feeling of everyone you love crowded around a table giving thanks for time together and a year of memories made.  I think it's very important to give thanks in everything that we do so Thanksgiving is such a great reminder to pause, reflect, and give thanks!
Happy Thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 23, 2014

The Sunday Scoop

Aaaahhhh.  Sunday morning.  I know many of my teacher friends are already on Thanksgiving break.  Others only have 2 or 3 days to go.  You can do it!  You're nearly there!   I'm linking up with Teaching Trio for their Sunday Scoop Linky Party.  This week it's all about book club and Thanksgiving, which I'm hosting both at my house.

I've started a book club and we meet for the first time Tuesday evening.  We read Wild this month.  Have you read it?  I'm nearly finished.  I'm not a huge nonfiction reader so this was a bit of a stretch for me.  It is a true story of one woman's journey on the Pacific Crest Trail alone.  I'm really enjoying it and am looking forward to hearing what everyone else thought about it.  Any book club tips out there?  Good book suggestions?  I'm open to it all.

Thursday is Thanksgiving.  My favorite holiday.  We have friends coming over for dinner after our kids get home from school.  They are also from Washington as well.  Our kids are best friends.  I can't wait to get that bird in the oven, turn on the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, and let the magic of Thanksgiving happen.

I hope this Thanksgiving finds you celebrating with friends and/or family.  Enjoy the holiday!
Happy Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 21, 2014

Five for Friday: Birthday Edition!!!

Happy Friday Everyone!!

I'm linking up with Kacey from Doodlebugs Teaching for another fun Five for Friday linky!  Tuesday was my birthday.  I was spoiled this year by my family.  Especially my husband.  Last year at this time we had just arrived here in the Bahamas the night before my birthday.  My husband had to report to work the very next morning leaving me in the hotel with our kids in a new country.  This year has been one to remember.

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My husband surprised me with a day away together doing the power boat adventure.  It's a day excursion that takes you out to the Exumas.  The ride is about and hour and fifteen minutes.  First stop is getting to feed iguanas grapes.  Then we headed to the Cay where we'd be spending the day.  We got to feed wild sting rays from our hand.  Then our guide wrangled a couple sharks for us.  There were nurse sharks, lemon sharks, and reef sharks.  I spent most of the day reading on the beach.  Pure heaven!  It was a once in a lifetime kind of experience!

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 I had these on my amazon wish list.  When we get our fruits and veggies here in the Bahamas they are already close to spoiling so I am always trying to preserve the fridge life of my fruits and veggies.  I'm hoping the berry keeper and fruit and veggie keeper help.

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I desperately needed new measuring cups and spoon.  10 cups and 10 spoons?  Yes, please!  Can't wait to use these!!!

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With all the power outages here in the Bahamas I have been wanting one of these.  This will definitely help!

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New spatulas!  I'm especially excited about the jar one.  This will definitely help with mixing up a new jar of peanut butter and getting the last bits out of a jar.  

I also received an amazon gift card and a Shutterfly gift card from my sisters.   I'm planning on getting a big lasagna dish with my amazon card.  I really need to make some photo books on Shutterfly so I'm going to use my gift card to do just that!

Tomorrow my husband and I along with a bunch of our friends are headed out to see the new Mockingjay movie.  So excited!  I'm a huge Hunger Games fan.  Also looking forward to Thanksgiving.  I just love Thanksgiving.  It's probably my favorite holiday.  We've got friends coming over to celebrate with us.  Looking forward to a day of cooking, watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, some football, and some great friends and food.  
Happy early Thanksgiving everyone!

Monday, November 17, 2014

One Year Ago...

One Year Ago...

One year ago I left my friends, church, extended family, and community and made a huge leap of faith with my husband and 2 kids... we moved to the Bahamas!  I will never forget all the hard good byes, pulling out of the hotel parking lot for the airport at 5am in the rain with tears streaming down my face, tears falling again as the plane took off, and the excitement as the plane landed in Nassau.  When I think back one word comes to mind...whirlwind!

One year ago we arrived here on this island with 7 suitcases, 5 carry-ons, 2 car seats, and our two kids in tow.  We committed to a two year stay for my husband's job.  I wish I had a picture from the airport that day of all of us with our stuff but I don't.  I'm sure you can picture it though.  :)

One year ago we checked into our hotel room (temporary housing) which we nicknamed our pink house.  We had a 2 room suite with small kitchen on the 2nd floor.  We were supposed to stay for a week.  We ended up staying for a month.

My daughter started school at the end of our first full week here.  I was desperate to get her into a routine.  Here are my 2 on her first day as we walked to bus stop.

We spent our first Thanksgiving here in the hotel.  It was a bit strange sending my daughter off to school that day.  We had our meal as soon as she got home.

We finally moved into our home on Dec. 14.  My son had a blast in all the paper as we unpacked.  He called it his swimming pool.

We spent our first Christmas Eve on the beach.

Would you believe we bought a live Christmas tree?  I won't tell you how much it cost.  Nearly gave my husband a heart attack.  :)

I can't lie and say it's been all happiness adjusting to life here in the Bahamas.  Life here has its challenges, as do most places.  It was pretty rough at times last year.  There were times when my husband walked in the door from work and I walked right out, desperately needing a break and to clear my head.  It has been a roller coaster ride, for sure!

It helped when family came to visit.  My parents came... We took them to the Junkanoo Museum.  Junakanoo is a HUGE holiday here in the Bahamas in December.  The parade is in downtown in the middle of the night.  We didn't make it to the parade last year, but hope to one year before we leave.  Here's a picture of my dad making pancakes...his specialty.

My husband's parents came to visit too but sadly, I don't have any pictures from that visit.  I'll have to hunt those down.

One of my best friends from Seattle came for her Spring break.  She took this picture of me and my kiddos on Easter.  She survived the longest power outage we've had since we moved here.  It was out all night.  Definitely a challenge of living in the Bahamas...lots of power outages.

We like to do the excursions but they are expensive.  One of our favorites is Sandy Toes, or Rose Island.  Here's a picture of Suri at Sandy Toes.  It's more natural than Blue Lagoon.  You can see my post on Blue Lagoon here.  It's just an awesome day on the beach.

I took the kids home for a month this summer.  My husband works crazy overtime hours during the summer so we decided we would head home and see my family in Wisconsin.  I got to go to the TpT conference.  I met up with my best friends that I taught with for 5 years in Seattle.  We had a blast!  I also met Amy Lemons... so fun!

Probably our favorite things about living here are the beaches and our community swimming pool.  My kids love the beach and love the pool.  Sadly, after living here through the summer temps, they are now finding the pool a bit cool.  We are becoming Bahamians.  :)

As I reflect back on our year I am so thankful for all my friends and family who lent a listening ear when I needed to complain, who came to visit when I needed a bit of home, and who have supported us in this amazing journey.  Looking back, I am so glad we did this.  I have grown to love this little island, the friendly people, and the beauty that surrounds us.  Here's to another amazing year!

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Sunday Scoop

Sunday Morning!  Now that I'm a stay at home momma I have to say that Sunday mornings have changed for me.  I really enjoy Sunday mornings and I'm not stressed about the week ahead.  Yes, I still have lots to get done today, but the stress level is considerably less.We are currently snuggled up on the couch watching Transformers Rescue Bots.  I'm linking up with Teaching Trio for my first Sunday Scoop... such a fun linky!  Here's my scoop...

My daughter wears a uniform to school so I have to be careful to make sure the correct uniform is clean and ready to go.  She has a formal and sport uniform.  Laundry is a have-to.  I'm hoping to get off to the grocery store without my kids in tow after my husband gets home from work this afternoon.  I need to check and see what time my Packers are on though.  Can't miss the Pack.  Go Pack Go!  Looking forward to getting some baking done too.  I made whole wheat pumpkin muffins yesterday.  I'm going to bake some bread in the bread machine and probably make another batch of the muffins since they disappear quickly around here.  A batch of granola would also be a good thing, but we'll see if I have the time.

As for now... we're snuggled up on the couch and I'm not moving anytime soon!  Happy Sunday!

Friday, November 14, 2014

Five for Friday!

Happy Friday Morning Everyone!

I love Fridays!  Who doesn't?  It's a rainy morning here in the Bahamas.  So my morning walk is not happening.  Oh well!  More time to blog while Levi watches Daniel Tiger.  :)

I'm linking up for the fabulous Five for Friday Linky...  Here are my 5 happenings from the week.

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Here in the Bahamas it was a sad week.  There was a plane crash Sunday evening that killed Dr. Myles Munroe, his wife, and 7 other people.  He is a well-loved pastor and leader known world-wide.  Friends of ours were at the conference with him and knew him very well.  We are thankful that our friends are ok but know they are grieving a great loss.  RIP Dr. Munroe.
Dr Myles Munroe and his wife Ruth.
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Tuesday was story hour.  We read the book Red Leaf Yellow Leaf by Lois Ehlert.  Then it was art project time.  We made a fall leaf themed project.  First we had the kids finger paint red, orange, and yellow all over a piece of white finger painting paper.  Then we laid a piece of black construction paper on top that had 3 maple leaf shapes cut out of it.  Man!  Cutting the leaf papers was a lot of work!  I sure missed the die cut machine from when I worked at a school.  For snack we had a cornucopia snack.  We made a mix of honey nut cheerios, peanuts, and dried fruit and put it in a sugar cone to make it look like a cornucopia.  We always end by letting the kids play together at the playground that's right outside the clubhouse where we meet.  

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Wednesday we learned we have a dangerous plant growing in our backyard.  We have landscapers who take care of all the yard work in our community.  They informed me Wednesday that they discovered this growing from the other side of the fence in our back yard.  It's growing and reaching into our backyard.  They are going to need to get permission to get a tractor and go dig it out since it's outside our community.  In the meantime the kids can't go in the backyard.  Big Bummer!  They have been loving the trampoline and now can't go out and bounce.

We had a whole bunch of mail arrive this week.  I was most excited about the 2 sets of drawers that arrived.  We needed them for all our dress-up clothes.  I now was able to sort them by girl dress-up, superhero dress-up, community helper dress-up, accessories, and other dress-up.  Now to make the labels...
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I re-made one of my first products and gave it a major face-lift this week.  I'm really happy with the way it turned out.  The TpT website is giving me major difficulties as I've been trying to upload the revised version.  The upside is that the revised version is uploaded.  The revised product description won't upload so it doesn't include the new targets and how they are laid out.  The price also won't update so bonus for any of you who want to snatch it up while it's only $3.  I'm planning on selling it for $5 since it's 51 pages now.  Go grab this $3 steal while you can!  Click the cover pic below to snatch it up!

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Tomorrow night is movie night at my daughter's school.  I'm on the PTA which has planned this event.  I'm hoping the rain decides to go away since we are showing the movie outdoors.  We are showing The Polar Express.  I'm so excited!  The kids are coming in their pjs.  I love this movie.  It always gets me in the holiday mood.  After watching it I feel like I could believe in Santa Claus again.

That's my week in a nutshell.  Enjoy your Friday everyone.  I saw a few lucky teachers have a snow day today!  Best Friday ever, right??