Friday, January 31, 2014

Engagement Gift Idea

When one of my besties got engaged last Christmas, I knew I wanted to get her and her hubby-to-be something special to celebrate. I'm obsessed with Etsy so I knew I would find something cute and unique there for them.

I found these perfect hand-painted champagne flutes on Etsy that I thought were fabulous.

They say "Lucky Mr." and "Future Mrs"

What a great way to toast to the happy couple!

I got these at the etsy shop lgrn22 


Mother-in-Law Gift Idea

This post is for all those getting married or newlyweds who are looking for a unique gift for their Mother-in-Laws. 

Looking for something special to get your current or future Mother-in-Law?

The beautiful frame with a pic of my mother-in-law and hubby
I got this beautiful frame from the Etsy shop for my mother-in-law Tammy on her birthday after we got married.

For the direct link for the frame, click here.

On the frame it says:

"Thank you for raising the man of my dreams"

Needless to say, my mother-in-law loved it! 

This etsy site has other great wedding party gifts too!

Birthday & Thinking of You Gift Idea

Gift Ideas for the Ladies in your Life

Just wanted to share a great Etsy jewelry shop with you that I found and love: BellaMantra. So many great gift options. Below are a few of the items I purchased as gifts.

Here's BellaMantra beautiful scissor jewelry that I got for my sister-in-law Tiffany who is a hair stylist:

Scissor headband and necklace for her birthday this year

scissor bracelet for her birthday gift last year
 She loved them and gets complements on them all the time!
My beautiful sis-in-law Tiff wearing the necklace!
Just this week I ordered and sent this arrow necklace to my best friend, Jill:
Beautiful packaging with hand written noted included in shipment
How cute is this?
 She is going through a hard time as her and boyfriend broke up so I also sent along a note in the package that said this:

"An arrow can only be shot by pulling it backward. When life is dragging you back with difficulties, it means it's going to launch you into something great. Focus, and keep aiming."

My hope was by her wearing she would be reminded to stay strong and positive.

She loved it and says she wears it everyday!

I love everything in her shop and highly recommend her. She offers amazing gift ideas, fast communication, and super quick delivery.

Baby Shower and Graduation Gift Idea!

"Oh, The Places You'll Go!" by Dr. Seuss: Baby Shower or Graduation Gift Idea

I saw this idea on Pinterest and I had to try it for my co-teacher's baby shower and for my little sister, Kristen, when she graduated from Suffolk University.

As a preschool teacher, I am in love with this gift!!

The book "Oh, The Places You'll Go!" by Dr. Seuss is such a wonderful story that includes so many great quotes on life, thinking positive, and looking forward to your future. For example, “You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You're on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go...". Dr. Seuss was such a genius!

When a teacher in my classroom was having a baby I picked up the book for her at Target and wrapped it up in a nice bow. I then found this great printable to include as a gift tag that reads:

"For a fun tradition, sneak this book into  your child's teacher at the end of each school year and ask them to write a small note and sign it.  Give the completed book to him/ her as a gift at their high school graduation"

For the printable gift tag and the inspiration for this gift click here. 

I printed the tag without words and hand wrote the highlighted wording above. 

The mommy-to-be loved it and even cried when she read the gift tag!

For my sister's graduation gift, I bought the book and wrapped in up nice and included a little personal note in the inside of the book cover for her with this quote from the book:

“You're off to Great Places!
Today is your day!
Your mountain is waiting,
So... get on your way!” 

My beautiful sister Kristen

It makes such a great gift for a new baby with so many possibilities ahead of them and for anyone starting a new adventure in life!

xx Kimberly

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Dr. Seuss's Wacky Wednesday!

I love Dr. Seuss!
Every year we have so much fun with our Dr. Seuss theme around his birthday (March 2nd). One way we celebrate his birthday is by reading two of his famous books, “There’s a Wocket in My Pocket” and “Wacky Wednesday”.

After reading "There's a Wocket in My Pocket", the children create their own silly creatures using readily made art materials that fit into pre-made "pockets'" cut using construction paper.

"wockets in our pockets"
After creating their creatures they tell a teacher "there's a _____ in my pocket".

Later we read the story “Wacky Wednesday". In the story a child wakes up in the morning to notice a shoe on the wall. With every turn of the page, the scenes seem to grow wackier and wackier. The book ends with the child needing to find 20 wacky things before things will return back to normal.  

 After reading these great books we have our own “Wacky Wednesday” in our classroom.
We set up fun wacky activities all around the classroom for the children to explore all day.   

We set up our writing table in the circle area!

We hung a teacher's shoe from the ceiling for the children to see when they arrived, similar to the story!
We added a tree to our sand table.
Painting with our feet!
Dr. Seuss Character Puppets in Dramatic Play
We had Dr. Seuss books available in every area with fun Dr. Seuss character stuffed animals!
We encouraged the parents to help their child celebrate Wacky Wednesday by wearing something silly that day. We gave them some ideas: wear  crazy socks, a funny hat, backwards or inside out shirt, or a silly hair do.  It was fun to get parent participation by encouraging them to help their children “think and dress” creatively!

Here a student is wearing two different color socks.
This student wore a silly hat his mom helped him make.

Another silly outfit!

This boy wore two different shoes.
My wacky getup!

Another "wacky" highlight of our day was having lunch for breakfast and breakfast for lunch. 
We made pancakes for lunch and asked parents to just pack a light snack that they had for "breakfast". 

I was inspired to start this new and exciting tradition in my classroom from the amazing website For their version of "Wacky Wednesday" click here.

Thanks for stopping by!
:) Kimberly

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Easy Valentine's Day Math Activity

Learn to Make Patterns with Conversation Heart Candies

This has been one of my favorite activities to do every Valentine's Day since I started teaching preschool. My kiddos love it because the candy of course sparks their interest, yet, they become really excited about trying to make fun patterns with them. There is also a great literacy connection as they often investigate the letters on the little hearts and ask what the words say. 

  • I buy a bulk bag of the candy hearts. Wal-Mart or Dollar Tree is great for this, but you can find them anywhere this time of year.
  • I print out the great heart pattern grids on One of my favorite preschool websites! You can find the pattern grids here. With these grids the children can create and extend AB, ABC, AABB, AAB, and ABB patterns.
  • Once I print out the grids, I put them in plastic sheet protectors. Great tip I discovered when you don't have time to laminate! Who does? I found a bunch of them at the dollar tree!

After they are done with the activity, I save some and give them a few as a special treat!
Happy Patterning & Valentine's Day!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Rent the Runway!

My experience with Rent the Runway!

I always wanted to try to rent a dress from this site, but was a little sceptical. However, my friend said she uses it all the time and couldn't stop raving about them. So when my hubby and I were invited to a late summer wedding, and I couldn't find anything to wear, I decided to try it.

The site is super user friendly and couldn't be easier. I knew the style I wanted so it didn't take me long to pick out a super chic long sleeved black floor lengthe gown. I decided on a Badgley Mischka dress: Forbidden Territory Gown. For link to the dress I chose click here

I love how they deliver the dresses in a nice black garment bag! It was so exciting!

A little crazy for a summer wedding but I couldn't resist.

Me and my handsome hubby!

It turned out great! Rent the Runway delivered me 2 sizes of the dress I ordered. A 2 Long and a 4 Long. The 4 Long fit great! And how amazing is it that they have long sizes. I'm 5'5 but with heels need the extra length. Also, let me tell you, it does feel amazing to have a designer dress on- it just feels so nice and fits like a glove! It was super easy to return the dresses as they include UPS packaging and shipping supplies in the order they send out.

I received compliments all the night on the dress and will definitely rent from them again.

2nd Birthday Party Favors: Elmo and Abby Cadabby Treat Bags!

Elmo and Abby Cadabby Treat Bags

My god-daughter Amiyah's 2nd birthday party last year had an Elmo and Abby theme. I offered to make the treat bags for her party.
Finished bags: Came out cute right?

All ready to go!

Displayed at the party!

Here is what I did step by step:

1. Bought red and pink little paper treat bags from A.C. Moore. They come 12 in a pack so I bought 1 pack of red and one pack of pink.
2. I borrowed some construction paper from my classroom. I needed: white, black, blue, orange, pink, and purple.
3. I found some cute little think flowers in my classroom art supplies. You could find them at an AC Moore or Michael's. You could also use flower stickers.
4. I cut out enough white circles for the eyes of Elmo and Abby. I traced something circular to make sure they were even. For the pupils I used little garage sale label stickers that I got at the dollar store that I then made them black using a permanent black marker. For Abby's eyes I cut blue circles in half and then added a black line to give her an eyeliner looker with permanent marker.
5. I then cut half moon sorta shapes with black and pink construction paper for their lips.
6. For Elmo's nose, I made ovals using orange construction paper and for Abby's I cut out pink circles.
7. Phew! Elmo is ready to put together and complete!
8. For Abby's hair I searched everywhere for a template to print and cut out and then trace on purple paper. You can find the template I used here:
9. It took a while to cut out her hair, but once that's complete she's super easy to put together.
10. Last step to complete Abby: give her little freckles using a pink marker.

Treats inside the bags:

The Dollar Tree and Target are where I got all my treats. Here's some of what I purchased:
  • little magic wands  (perfect for Abby Cadabby!)
  • princess rings
  • beaded necklaces
  • mini-mazes
  • matchbox cars
  • candy
  • mini-playdough containers
Cupcakes my talented Mother-in-Law made!

The head table for the bday girl.

Centerpieces my sister-in-law made: Balloons with a square of wrapping paper

It was a great party! 

Dr. Seuss in the Preschool Classroom

Dr. Seuss Curriculum Ideas

Dr. Seuss birthday is coming up! It’s March 2nd! He would have been 110! In my preschool classroom over the past several years we have celebrated this great author and illustrator's birthday. Leading up to his birthday and beyond we read his amazing books and do many fun curriculum activities inspired by his stories.

Here’s some examples of Dr. Seuss activities we have done in our classroom:

1) Sensory Activity: Bartholomew and the Oobleck:
A student having fun with the oobleck

After reading Bartholomew and the Oobleck we made our own oobleck in the classroom!

Here's the super easy recipe:

1 1/2 cup of Corn Starch
1 cup of water
Optional food coloring (we used green like the story)
Mix it

Our kiddos really love oobleck, it's messy to clean up when you want to get rid of it but it actually does not get that messy when they are playing with it. We put our oobleck into clear small bins so each child was able to individually play with it. 

We add fun items to it like little gems, little animals, etc.

Check out a great blogpost about this idea here: 

2)Sensory Activity: "Green Egg" Slime:

Here we made "Green Egg" Slime! The kiddos had a great time making this and wanted to play with day after day! They  made great connections to the story "Green Eggs and Ham" while using this slime.

I usually eye-ball making slime and just mix the glue and starch together until it feels rights. However, here is a recipe:

2 cups white glue
1 cup liquid starch


Mix together with hands. Keep kneading until it forms a silly putty like ball. Will take a few minutes of kneeding before the wetness goes away.

If it is wet and starch is not bonding, add more glue. If it is sticky, add more starch. Keep kneading until it forms a silly putty ball.

Store in an air tight container in refrigerator.

3) Math Activity: One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish Math 

 Here we read "One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish" and then made patterns using rainbow goldfish crackers and the goldfish pattern grids from Prekinders. If you would like a copy of the Prekinders grids we use and other fun fish cracker math click here:

4) Art Activity: Create Dr. Seuss Characters

Here we used all different art materials to create "Dr. Seuss Characters". We placed various pipe cleaners in vibrant colors along with pom poms, various writing materials, googly eyes, etc. on the table but the children were encouraged to use any art supplies they could find in our writing area. We had a lot of Truffula Trees and Thing 1 and Thing 2s! All the children were really creative with this!

More Dr. Seuss ideas to come soon! Happy Planning!

Gift for Husband: Year's Worth of Dates

A Whole Year of Dates

For the first year of marriage, the traditional gift is paper. So although, I wasn't really thinking I'd get him a paper gift I thought this idea fit in nicely with the tradition. Here's what I did:

On first wedding anniversary was in July last year so starting that month until June of this year I planned 12 dates for us to look forward to. I mixed purchased items (gift cards, tickets) with things we could do for free either at home or around the local community. I created a word document to write a detailed page to explain each date and added pictures/clipart of what we would be doing. I put each printed date along with the tickets/gift cards, etc. and some cute items that went along with the date into a large envelope.

I placed all the envelopes into a nice box along with this note explaining everything to my hubby:

"Happy Anniversary Dex!
For our first wedding anniversary I want to give you the gift of time- just you and me. Here are 12 envelopes, one for each month over the next year. Each envelope contains a pre-planned, (mostly) pre-paid date just for us.  Some of the dates will take place in the comfort of home, some are planned for the local area, and some will take us out of town.  All 12 dates are different.
The plan is to open the envelope together at the beginning of the month, look at the calendar and decide on a date.  So right from the beginning of the month, we’ll have a fun date on the calendar to look forward to.
I love you and can’t wait to spend all this time with you!"

Here's a pic of all the items I used:

An example of the January Date: Bowling, Movies, & Ice cream:
October Date: Haunted Happenings Tour

September:Recreate First Date

Geeky Fun Date: Museum of Science

August: Mead Tour & Hike

July: Paint Nite

Here’s the breakdown of the dates I thought of:
1.     July-Tickets to Paint Nite. Included a paint by number set.
2.     August-Mead Tour & Tasting in NH. We went to a great Meadery in Londonderry, NH called Moonlight Meaderycheck them out here! 
I included a map of a local mountain that we could visit to go for a hike and snacks and hiking stuff.
3.     September-1st date site- Gift card to the Cheesecake Factory. It's where we went on our very first date.
4.     October-Tickets to a ghost tour in Salem, Ma. I inncluded a gooey spider for the Halloween theme.
5.     November- Geeky fun date. Trip to the Museum of Science
 I added a menu from restaurant near the museum that we could visit after.
6.     December- Restaurant Crawl. A night of exploring our local neighborhood. We will plan to go somewhere for drinks, then somewhere else for apps, and then again somewhere else for dinner and dessert.
7.     January- Movies, Bowling, and Ice cream. Included gift cards to the movies, bowling, and our favorite ice cream spot J.P. Licks along with some movie treats
8.     February- Recreate our engagement weekend. Stay in the same Bed & Breakfast we did when we got engaged in Newport RI. Included some bubble bath.
9.     March-Home spa. I listed fun stuff he could choose from: foot rub, back massage, etc. Included massage oils and bath petals.
10. April- Isabella Stewart Gardener Museum visit. FREE from library. I added a map of the museum along with a menu from a pizzeria near the museum.
11. May-Revisit the Scene of the Crime- Gift card to the restaurant where we first met: Ruby Tuesday
12. June-Bike ride along Minuteman Trail near our house. Included trail mix and a map of the routes.

My hubby loves that we have something fun to look forward to on the calendar each month!

My cousin gave my idea to her male friend for his wife for their 1st anniversary and she loved it too of course, so anyone can get creative with this idea! 
All the envelopes ready to go!

Here's a link with the idea that inspired me: click here!

If your interested I could send you the word documents I created to make the pages for these dates!