Monday, May 22, 2017

Our Summer Bucket List

What is on your summer bucket list?

Friday, May 19, 2017

Jack Henry's Book Obsessions

Jack Henry has always loved books. I love to read to him but I have to admit that he gets obsessed with just a few books and wants them read to him over and over. I've gotten smart (and I guess you could say lazy) and let him watch You Tube videos of people reading those books. He does the cutest thing after I finish a book. He says "Mama, that was a good story". He says it every time. It makes me smile. I wanted to share with you his current favorite books because if he loves them then I know your child will also.

His newest book obsession was a gift from a blogging friend Leslie. It is Sam and Dave Dig a Hole.

The book that we have all been forced to reenact with him is The Three Billy Goats Gruff. They did that at his school. He pretends the coffee table is the bridge and he wants one of us to pretend they are the troll. HIs favorite part is him getting to be the biggest billy goat at the end and he attacks the troll. We always play along and get attacked. It cracks him up!

Jack Henry has recently fallen in love with the classic The Very Hungry Caterpillar. I guarantee he has read that book 100 times today. When I say read I mean he has the thing memorized. He still wants someone to read it to him though.

He has long been obsessed with the book We're Going on a Bear Hunt. He also loves watching the video of the book. He loves doing the motions and he still acts surprised when the bear appears. 

I love that Jack Henry enjoys books as much as I do. I hope that his love for reading and books continue through the years. I absolutely love it when we lay side by side in bed with our books. 

I would love to hear if you have any book suggestions.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Podcasts I Love

If you have an iPhone then you have probably seen the purple app that says Podcasts. Most people ignore that app. It is my most used app. Podcasts are like radio shows with specific topics. I don't believe there is any subject not covered in a podcast. Don't believe me? I recently finished listening to the podcast "The Missing Richard Simmons" It was fabulous by the way. If you are a Harry Potter fan there is several podcasts for you.


Harry Potter and the Sacred Text

I keep my podcast listening to shows that I need to hear in this phase of my life. I like parenting, Christianity, home, goal setting, and educational topics.

The very first podcast I listened to, and it happens to be my favorite, is the "Mom Struggling Well" podcast with Emily Thomas. A blogger friend Celeste (she has an online clothing store for boys called Haven Gray and everything is super cute) introduced me to it and I've listened to all episodes more than once. Emily is a mom to two kids and each week she interviews a mother. She is a Christian but she isn't preachy. She is funny and real down to earth. Her honesty is so refreshing. 

My second favorite podcast is "The Mom Hour" by Meagan and Sarah. Meagan has five kids and lives in Michigan. Sarah has three kids and lives in southern California. Each week they cover a parenting topic (this week is surviving the end of the school year). They have great chemistry and it feels like you are sitting down with friends. They are very interactive and have even read a letter I wrote on their podcast. You always walk away feeling like a better mom. If you are anything like me, you need to feel that way as much as you can.

"The Girl Next Door" podcast comes out every other week. Erica and Kelsey are next door neighbors living in Arizona. They start each episode with a cocktail recipe. They cover a topic of interests and always end the show by talking about their current obsessions and then they do neighborhood news. I currently wear the lip stain Erica suggested. Their neighborhood news is always hilarious.

Now I must talk about my love for "The Big Boo Cast" podcast. Sophie aka Boo Mama and Melanie aka Big Mama are southern, football fanatics, authors, bloggers, and speakers. They write Christian nonfiction about their lives and their books are hilarious. Sophie is originally from Mississippi and now lives in Birmingham and Melanie lives in Texas. My one issue with this podcast is that it comes out sporadically. The good part is that I can listen to them again and still laugh so hard. If you give no other podcasts a try, give this one a listen. You will be so glad you did. 

Since I have a 45 minute commute to work I do my listening on the road. During the summer, when I'm being forced to push Jack "higher Mama higher" I just put in my earbuds and go to my happy place.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Math With Preschoolers-Hats On Your Head

Jack Henry and I were watching Sesame Street the other day and there was a part of the show where they were playing "How Many Hats Can You Wear On Your Head?". Jack Henry thought it was hilarious so I had an idea.

Here is that portion of Sesame Street:

Bennett was over and the two of them were going wild so I put my idea to work. First, I had them watch that part of Sesame Street since Bennett hadn't seen it.

I then had them take turns wearing hats. I would have them count as I placed the hat on their head. After a few hats I would ask "how many hats will he have on his head if I add 2 more". I asked various math questions while I was placing the hats.

We only ever made it to 8 hats. Each time the hats would fall they got to write the number under their name. We did a few rounds and then we counted how many hats they had on their head all together. 

The boys loved this activity and thought it was a fun game. They also thought it was really cool that they were doing what they had seen on tv. Making those connections is so valuable. I know that this is an educational game we will play all summer long. 

Monday, May 15, 2017

What I'm Reading

Books are a huge part of my life. I'm always reading something. I read a mixture of fiction and nonfiction.

Currently I'm reading We Are Water by Wally Lamb. I'm not even half way yet but I am enjoying it. He has a wonderful way of developing characters.

Everything of Lamb's I love. He has written one of my top five favorite books, She's Come Undone

Recently I just finished A Little Salty to Cut the Sweet by Sophie Hudson. It is nonfiction. She's a Christian writer who has a knack for telling good stories in such a funny way. 

If you are in the mood for a book that will make you rethink people and creep you out in the best way then I suggest Behind Closed Doors by B. A. Paris. It was so good that I finished it in less than 24 hours. It is a true page turner.

So far on my summer to read list is the following books:

Have you read any of these or have any recommendations? 

My New Education Journey

Kelli, Betsy, and I on our graduation day from SAU

I have always enjoyed learning. Paper, pencils, books, highlighters make me so giddy. Don't get me started on my love for index cards. I'm a self-proclaimed school nerd. It is one of the reasons I became a teacher. At UAM I got my bachelors in history. Love you Dr. Corbin! I then went through the Nontraditional Licensure program to get my 6-12 teaching license.

After a few years of teaching high school history I knew I wanted more. I enrolled at SAU to get my masters in Library Media. It was an amazing experience! I met friends that I'm still close with today. I interviewed at Jimmy Brown, a K-5 school in Star City. I got the job and started working there not knowing anyone. I've been there six years and I love my job. The people I work with are amazing and have a true passion for teaching and helping kids. I want more.

I recently enrolled at SAU to get my masters in Higher Adult and Lifelong Education. I want to have options. One day I would love to guide adults to their career paths. Encouragement is a God giving quality that I've been gifted. I know I can help others to see their potential.

Being a single mother to a four year old, working full time, all while in school will not be easy. However, I love a challenge. Plus, I want Jack Henry to see his mother getting educated and fulfilling dreams and passions.

I know I've made the right decision because I prayed about it for a few months and God spoke. He threw SAU at me at every turn. I've been taught that when God speaks, you listen.