Hello old friend! It has been too long. I miss you. Yes I've been busy. But we're all busy and it's important to make time for friends.
Life has been crazy. There's so much to talk about. I don't know where to begin!
Well, for starters I'm still selling chalkboards!
And live with them too!
I've started a new fitness plan and am loving it! It's called 21 day fix!
I've lost almost 0 lbs in 4 months!
But better than that, I have muscles and feel better then ever!
The plan has three main components
2. Clean eating plan
3. 30 minute workouts!
I'm healthier, stronger and more confident!
I am also a coach! I love helping others meet their health and fitness goals.
Here is my facebook like page if you want to learn more!
But my first love is and will always be my chalkboard business!
It is a family business!
We make the blackboards ourselves and put the utmost care into the creation of each and every one!
Chalkboards inspire me! The inspirational quotes that I put on my chalkboard above my computer remind me everyday! What I'm working for...
I have been pinning on pinterest for 3 years now! I started pinning three summers ago. I don't know what it is about pinning that I love so much, it just relaxes me. It's like flipping through all of my favorite magazines in one place. I am a very visual person so if I see a great picture I will go deeper into investigating it.
My Reasons for pinning:
1. As mentioned above, to relax.
2. To find recipe ideas
3. To find decorating ideas
4. To waste time
5. To brainstorm ideas for teaching
7. DIY Ideas
8. Inspirational quotes to keep me going in life
9. It's fun
My Method of pinning:
I usually click on "everything" in the search and scroll down the page. I will only pin something that absolutely grabs me. I usually click on the source, especially if it is a recipe. If it's a bad link or bogus link I don't pin it. Sometimes everything you need to know is in the pin and there is no need to click on the source. In that case I will pin without clicking the source. In one scroll down the everything search page I may pin one or to pictures. If I'm feeling in the mood to really procrastinate I will hit the everything search again and scroll down a second time, otherwise I will be finished.
My favorite pins:
First, since the summer of 2011 I have pinned 4,418 times. I have 84 boards and 786 follows! :)
The following are my favorite pins because I have either referred to them and used them several times or have used them successfully. So, here is my list of favorites and reasons they are favorites.
1. From Table for Two This recipe is fantastic! She titles it Take Out Fake Out Mongolian Beef. This is a favorite in my house. I have made it several times and refer to this recipe and pin everytime! The only changes I have made are fresh chinese egg noodles instead of rice. I also find that the best steak for this recipe is skirt steak cut against the grain. Total Winner!
2. From The Girl who ate everything This recipe is so easy and amazing! Easy Feta Dip. With just a few simple ingredients this can be thrown together in the morning before going to work. Bring it to work for the office pot luck, with a bag of pita chips and you are a hero. Everyone loves it! I have made it for faculty meetings and family gatherings. It's a great recipe in a pinch! YUM
3. From I Save A 2 Z. Oven Roasted Broccoli. Another winner in my house. I use this recipe regularly and adopt it to other veges as well. Healthy, easy and delicious!
4. From I Save A 2 Z. This ice cream sandwich cake is easy to make, impressive to guests, delicious and CHEAP! I have made it for birthdays, 4th of July and other occasions! Everyone loves it!
Here is a picture of my version:
There seems to be a food theme here....
5. From Budget Bytes cinnamon pecan granola. This is so good. The only problem with this easy and cheap recipe (except for the pecans. Pecans are expensive.) is that it is sooo good that I eat 4 cups of this stuff in a day. My kids love it too!
6. From Nobody puts Mama in a corner sausage crescent rolls. I made this for a department meeting and a girls engineering breakfast and it was a huge hit! Another super easy make in a pinch with few ingredients that is out of this world good! I have adapted this recipe to my own version of scrambled eggs, cheese and sausage for the filling. This is a family favorite. I make it when we are going on a road trip. The kids have it in the car for breakfast. They LOVE it!
On to a few other none food favs...
7. From by Stephanie Lynn, under the table and dreaming. This was such an easy DIY. Simple materials and easy to make in minutes. I did it myself. No need for power tools. I love my planters. They are proudly displayed at my front door.
Here is an updated picture of my planters.
8. From Fun in First. I printed this quote and have it hanging behind my desk at school. (I am a middle school teacher). I look at it everyday in my classroom. It reminds me of what is important. This is a very important quote to me! It means everything!
9. There are several pins that inspired this last project. Here is one from Elle Decor. This help to inspire my built in between the studs, 4 inch deep pantry!
There it is my 10 favorite pins out of 4,418 and counting!
I forgot how long it takes to put together a blog post! Thank goodness for summer break. At least I got one in. Hopefully I will add a few more before the end of summer!
Last year (about a month or two ago) we mounted one of our 36"x24" chalkboards above our huge sectional. We weren't sure what should go there at first. Then we realized that a chalkboard in the livingroom/familyroom was the perfect fit.
The colors (gold and black) match anything! And the artwork can change regularly.
For the past few month the artwork of choice has been an inspirational quote.
This month the quote is:
This should start everyone on the right foot each day. My 11 year old insisted we add.."start it with a smile". He is wise beyond his years!
The trick to getting a crisp white image is working on a wet chalkboard. I learned this little trick in my pinning travels at In my own style
Enjoy your day!
Each day is a new Beginning!
start it with a smile :)
Do you ever start a post and don't have the energy to finish it? So you leave it sitting there as a draft, only to have it nagging at you until you finally come back to it and finish it!? Well this is one of those posts.
As the cooler weather finally hits Florida strange things begin to happen...to my hair.
I have naturally curly/wavy/frizzy hair. During the humid months (which are most) I don't fight it and just air dry and go. However, when the humidity drops so does my hair! It's not curly enough to be considered curly and not wavy enough to have body. It's just frizzy! The only answer is to blow dry and straighten.
Here's my recipe.
Str8 by Rusk!
This is not an advertisement, nobody is paying me to write about this product. I just thought I'd share. This is only my opinion, based on my experience with the product.
I accidentally stumbled upon this hair product in, of all places Walmart. It was on the bottom shelf of the styling products section and something intrigued me. It was about $12 to $15 (I don't remember exactly). I figured what the heck I've tried everything else.
This stuff is amazing!
Here's my process.
1. Shampoo and condition as usual
2. Towel dry but not too much (don't rub, just pat)
3. Wide tooth comb-comb out all knots
4. In the palm of your hand dispence about a dime size of str8 (don't over do, too much is not a good thing). A bonus this stuff will last a long time.
5. Pat both palms together so product is on both hands and gently rub through hair from top to ends.
6. Using a wide nylon bristle round brush starting with the front brush and blow with blow dryer on hot setting.
(This will take about 15 minutes, from front to back and underside from nape of neck.)
7. When all sections are completely dry and straight, finish with cold air from the blow dryer. Make sure you cool your whole head.
I find that even if it rains (as long as you don't get hair wet) hair stays straight with no frizz. And I can usually get a second day out of it. (wear shower cap when taking a shower).
Post finally Posted! (after 1 1/2 years sitting in the vault! lol)
It has been too long since my last post.
Paris is behind me...sigh...we'll always have Paris!! And I will return!
But for now it's back to reality! And my reality includes lots of kids and lots of computers!
School is in full swing! I can't believe we are finishing week 5 tomorrow!
If you find yourself needing to blend a real life environment (classroom) with a virtual world (game design and web design class) here are a few tips on warming up and personalizing an otherwise cold and techie space!
of course start with a chalkboard (a little bit of Paris)
What's more down to earth than wooden clothespins. I use this space for my EXCELLENT LISTS! and a place to post questions....
Every inch of space gets used. Here dollar store white boards with markers hang on the metal poles which house electrical wires (magnetically attached). Great for group work brainstorming. Cute $1 pails from Target hold pencils erasers and post-it for storyboarding and group work.
For students whose computers face the wall I used cereal boxed cut in half and covered in decorative duct tape as a whiteboard holder.
I find having these tools at the students finger tip very helpful to the design process. Also, In five weeks I haven't lost one pencil. At the end of class I ask the students closest to the pails to make sure there are four pencils. It's much easier to keep track of four pencils than 30!
I hope you found these suggestions for blending the real world classroom with the virtual world classroom.
Do you have any computer classroom management tips you'd like to share? I'd love to hear them!
Summer is here! And the school year is quickly becoming a distant memory.
It has been quick a year. I started a new job teach video game and web design to middle schoolers! Quite an adventure it has been. I will be doing it again this coming school year.
What better way to celebrate the end of a successful school year than a trip to Paris!!
Well the last day of school I left for Paris to meet the Chef, who had already been there for a week.
The chef met me at the airport in Paris and we took the train to the hotel (much more reasonable than a taxi). When we emerged from the train station in Paris chef lead me down a cobblestone pedestrian market street and the first thing I noticed was...chalkboards!! Everywhere!!
I snapped some pictures thinking I would only see a few. But the more we walked along the more I began to realize... Chalkboards are very Paris! Very French!
During my week long (which was not long enough) stay I continued to snap pictures of chalkboards. I didn't take pictures of all of them, that would be thousands! Just every now and than I would take a picture of a chalkboard.
Chalkboards were displayed with frame, without frame, painted directly on buildings, hanging on trees, at farmers markets, as garden markers...
I imagine if they banished all of the chalkboards from Paris it would definitely lose some of its charm.
If you want to add a little bit of Paris to your home (and who wouldn't want to) you can purchase a chalkboard board from Chalk it up!
Here is little slideshow that I put together of Paris chalkboards that I encountered:
I hope to be posting more pictures of my Paris trip soon! It was so amazing! I plan on returning one day...
Why is it that when something good comes along there's always someone out there trying to either ruin it or exploit it?
I love Pinterest! It is the place where I go to dream and pin. I love adding things to my "vision" boards. Sometimes I like to share what I think is sweet or funny etc... on facebook (with my 15 friends). It's just relaxing, like thumbing through all of my favorite magazines at one time! (Does anyone buy magazines anymore?) Than it's like cutting out your favorite pictures and pinning them to a bulletin board. It's all of that without the paper mess. I love pinterest!
But occasionally a intruder comes along. Sometimes someone pins an enticing photo of something yummy and I click on the link only to find a fake contest trying to lore me into giving my email address for a giveaway. I imagine that the person who repinned it is unaware it's a spam because they didn't click on the link, I guess the spammer is hoping enough people won't click on it to spread it around and enough do click on it to fall for the lore (who really knows how spammers think).
Now whenever I pin something I click on the picture first to make sure it takes me to a credible source. A source where I can learn more about the project or recipe or whatever. If it doesn't pass the test I don't pin.
Like I said before, I love Pinterest! And I want to help keep it SPAM FREE! So I made up this little message that I hope you will repin to spread the word.