Friday, October 31, 2014

Halloween Movies for Scaredy Cats

Happy Halloween!

I'm popping in to give you a list of the most "scaredy cat-friendly" Halloween movies...For people like me...People who are afraid of everything. And I mean everything.


Some of these are family-friendly (Charlie Brown) while others are not (I'm looking at your Idle Hands). Either way, these are the Halloween movies that I can stand to watch. This doesn't mean you won't find them scary (Shaun of the Dead is scary as hell, but made it to the list because I've seen it enough times to not be as scared) and it doesn't mean you won't find me a little lame for suggesting them (Zombieland). There are kid-friendly movies that most people add to these types of lists, such as the "kid" movie, The Witches (heck no - SO freaking scary), and campy movies such as Nightmare on Elm Street (are you kidding me? A man coming to me in my dreams to kill me?! No freaking way!) or Dawn of the Dead (nothing with the word Dead in it, unless it's a spoof, and even then it's super scary).

A few facts about this list:
  • Nightmare Before Christmas is my favorite double-holiday movie ever. It's also my favorite single holiday (Halloween) movie.
  • The Labyrinth is my f a v o r i t e movie of all time. I'm a sucker for Muppets and David Bowie.
  • I've always wanted to go to a midnight viewing of The Rocky Horror Picture Show. I live in Boston - it's huge around here. But alas, the Husband wants no part in it…
  • Hocus Pocus is set in Salem, MA, where I met my husband in college. The house in the movie where Book's light shines through the chimney is actually a house down the street from my 2006 apartment.



What do you think of my list? Would you add anything? Take anything away? Are you as terrified as everything as I am? Let's connect!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Family-Friendly Halloween Playlist

So now, for the family-friendly folks, I've created a playlist that you can share with your loved ones for Halloween. Just make sure to play the "adult" one once the Trick-or-Treaters are in bed!



(So, Time Warp has some questionable…motives... so what? Kids don't pick up on that!)

Any other songs your kids love? What would you add?

Happy Halloween, You Nonconformist! A Playlist for the Cool Kids

Who is sick of The Monster Mash? Okay, no one, because it's great. But if you are looking for some unconventional, spooky music to impress your friends, check out the playlist I created below. Some of these songs are well-known and classics (Psycho Killer and Don't Fear the Reaper), others are remakes (This is Halloween and Down With the Sickness), some are super creepy (Country Death Song and Come to Daddy), while some are just plain bizarre (Werewolf Bar Mitzvah - extra credit if you know what this is from!). 
*Warning: These are NOT family friendly! Not only can the lyrics be crass, but the meaning behind some songs are…well, freaking terrifying. Best for an adult party (paired with scary movies and Bloody Sucker Cocktails).

If you notice, Misfits are on the playlist twice. They could be on 5 more times. They are creeptastic. Also, if you would love another Nightmare Before Christmas remake, check out Fiona Apple's cover of Sally's Song. My FAVE (but wasn't available on Spotify. Boo)

Are there any other spooky scary songs that make you think of Halloween? Share your faves below!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Double-Duty Workout Gear: From the Studio to the Office!

Happy Hump Day!

So we all know that we need to work out. We've all heard these motivational quotes: "It's only 4% of your day!" and "You won't regret that workout!" and "There are 1,440 minutes in a day - you can spend 30 minutes on exercise!" But, let's be real. It does take longer than 30 minutes. You have to plan in order to get it in! It can be as simple as heading outside and going for a brisk walk, but often, it's not.

I'm always looking for ways to cut down my time getting ready, especially pre- and post-workout. I've even been trying to figure out ways to get to the gym during my lunch hour, without spending half my time changing for my workout and getting ready to head back to the office. That's why I've been searching for the perfect double-duty gear to take you from the office to the gym (and back - depending on how sweaty you get!).

I've created this collection of individual workout items for you to pair with different styles to make it office-friendly. I've provided some suggestions for how to style some pieces to take you from the studio to the streets! Some of the styles are less "office-friendly", especially if you are in the corporate world. But most, if not all, of these styles are perfect for a more casual work environment, and most definitely for your weekend activities!


Hopefully these styles will get you motivated to go workout and give your that extra time in your day for some "you" time!

Click through the slideshow to find your next fave find!


Do you have a favorite office-to-studio style? Have you thought about wearing fitness-inspired gear to work? Let's start a conversation!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Thursday, October 23, 2014

TBT: My Last Attempt at Happiness as a Classroom Teacher

Morbid, but true. This post, dated back in March, was my last hurrah at attempting something resembling happiness as a behavior teacher in the classroom. As many of you know, I left the classroom to accept a job as a behavior analyst for a mental health agency, currently contracted through the state department. It is a completely different setting, with a completely different population, and a complete different set of challenges, but I love it. My throwback post today is a reminder of where I was last March. A reminder of how unhappy I was. A reminder at how disorganized the administration was, while I was barely keeping my head above water, thrashing about asking for help. That being said, the post is also a reminder of how hopeful I was, how eager I was, how thankful I was to finally feel as though I was getting some support. Well, we know that just a couple of months later, I had had enough, and resigned from teaching. But that's a story for another day...

Original post: March 25, 2014

Greetings friends!

Phew - my life has been KrAAAzzZEEE!

In an attempt to find peace in my constantly chaotic world of teaching, I am looking at ways to improve my classroom presence and management skills. After 6+ months of barely keeping my head above water, an administrator finally brought me in to discuss what is working and not working in my class. I was very frank with her, and told her where my struggles lie, as well as my frustrations with the support. I had been asking for help with these issues since September (when I realized how much different the public school environment is from my previous job placement), and had received none. I had been given "quick answers" or, check out this website, but nothing I could really utilize in my classroom with any sort of guidance or support. I asked to observe other classrooms, to which I was given the response "Let me check with that teacher and get back to you." You can image I never heard back…

Now, just to remind you of my current job: I am a therapeutic special education teacher, working with students with social/emotional and behavioral challenges. My previous job had the exact same population of kids, however the entire school was devoted to their well-being and success. I am the only teacher for first and second grade students with this population, and none of the administrators in my building have experience with these types of kids. Makes for a challenging transition to say the least…

Well, I suppose I should look at this as a "new beginning" for myself as an educator. I am finally feeling the support of an administrator, and am being offered opportunities to observe classrooms, have observations of my own teaching with specific goals of classroom management in mind, and have a sounding board for ideas I have to enhance the classroom environment. I hate that it has taken to nearly the last 3 months of school for others to be on board with my frustration and overwhelmed-ness, but alas. Better late than never I s'pose.

This administrator has offered some insight in using centers, or stations in the classroom. My previous job did not include centers as part of their learning methodology, thus I never got the chance use them, or even see them in action. I've always been interested in utilizing this much-talked about academic and classroom management technique, however never felt confident enough to implement it myself, especially as my first year in public school. Well, this administrator has since encouraged me to attempt this in my classroom, in, yes, March. I purchased many books on implementing stations in the classroom for K-2, as well as The First Six Weeks of School (yes I know…how did I NOT own this already?!?!). I've already spent the last week or so vigorously highlighting and writing notes in the margins!

I still require lots of hand-holding while I figure all of this out (especially with the required "break" from curricula as we dive into learning how to use these stations), but I am slowly getting more and more confident. Hopefully some day I can talk a little about how it works in my classroom (provided I get to the point that it feels like it is working).

This past week, I introduced the Literacy Stations model to my kiddos, as well as reviewed classroom rules and expectations. We made the following Anchor Charts together for classroom rules and the consequences for following, and breaking the rules:



Also, just for fun, here is our Decoding Strategies Anchor Chart:

I've seen lots of beautiful, colorful, and fun anchor charts full of pictures and funky fonts. As much as I love them, I need to keep mine fairly simple, with minimal "extras". My kiddos can get overwhelmed by visual stimuli and instead of using an anchor chart effectively, they tend to get distracted by too many images and colors. Hence, my pretty basic charts, by Pinterest standards :)

If you have any additional classroom resources that you have found helpful in your quest to perfect your classroom management skills, please feel free to share! I'm always look at ways to enhance my own teaching skill :)

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I've linked up with The Teacher's Desk 6 for today's Throwback Thursday. Click the button below to check out the other great TBT posts!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Easy Like Sunday Morning #1

Good Morning Mates!

In an effort to be more reliable in my posts (sorry!), I've decided to merge my love for music (usually Indie, easy, and relaxing tunes) and restful Sundays by providing you with a weekly post. A single, soothing song for your enjoyment. Let me know what you think!


For real - I'm obsessed with this song (well, everything by Rilo Kiley) and have been for a while. I just love it so much, I have to share. It's my civic duty.

Enjoy!

Share it

 
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