Sunday, July 5, 2015

Our Adventure

It's been a really long time since I've written to y'all and told you what you should do to your homes with those spare pennies in your couch cushions. ;)

I haven't been by here in so long, and I didn't realize that any of you were still reading and stopping by, but my oh my, you surely are. I apologize in advance for all the un-returned questions and comments.

About a year ago, we decided to sell our wonderful home and everything in it. We took advantage of a booming real estate market and cashed out on everything. We are now living in a beautiful 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom home .... which costs us $340/month! Wanna see how we did it and read about our day to day adventures? Hop on over to my new blog: We Can Do Hard Things.

Here are a few pictures of our new place:

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Preschool - Playroom - Classroom Tour

This post is long overdue, I realize. I’ve been saying that I would post a ‘tour’ of our school for awhile now … the problem is just that I’m always adding something or changing something or SOMETHING. I think I’ve just about finished all the little finishing touches … so … if you can stand to jump back to the age of 4 with me, I’ll take you on a little ‘tour’. ;)

Classroom Preschool Homeschool Kindergarten Ideas

Our preschool room uses the front ‘two’ rooms of my home. It seems the safest and least awkward place to dedicate to a smattering of pint sized lovies. I’m not a huge fan of my 8 year old carpet; however, please feel free to praise me lavishly for being on year 5 of preschool with the same original carpet. Maybe next summer will be the summer we finally get around to putting in wood floors … maybe.

Classroom Homeschool Pottery Barn Kids Activity Tables

See? There’s my front door, in all it’s glory. Yes, this means that this preschool room is the very first thing that people see when they walk into my home …. …. which is probably why I’ve been so obsessive with its evolution.

You can read the tutorial for those adorable 'Knock Off Pottery Barn Kid’s tables' here. The little yellow stools are from IKEA.

Classroom Preschool Homeschool Kindergarten IKEA Rug

This poor bargain rug from IKEA is on its second year of torture and abuse from all these little ninjas and warriors. It gets trampled, rolled, folded, and chewed on daily. I seriously think it was $15 at IKEA … so … it’s been well worth the price. IDK, maybe it was $20.

Classroom Back To School Calendar

Our class calendar is a new addition this year … holy cow … I love it! Superman framed a piece of sheet metal with some cheap baseboard, then spray painted the whole thing white … and KABOOM! A magnetic calendar was born!
Classroom PreK Kindergarten Calendar

I bought the calendar itself at Mardel’s, then I laminated all of the components and hot glued a ceramic magnet on the back, like this:

Classroom Magnetic Calendar

There’s plenty of room at the top of the frame for any extra monthly magnets, so that I can keep them handy. I store the rest of my calendar supplies in a pencil box in the cabinet.

My most favorite things in our classroom are the fun gifts that kids have given to me over the years, for our classroom. * HINT: If you’re ever uncertain on the perfect teacher gift … just give her (him) something to display in the classroom. They are my favorite gifts!
Classroom - My Favorite Thing About My Classroom Is Whom I Share It With

This sweet subway art sign was gifted to us from a little boy last year … and I could not agree more with its sweet message. I love every single one of those little squirts.
Classroom Preschool Homeschool Kindergarten Decor

The very first year that I taught preschool, sweet Emilee’s Momma gave me that ‘World’s Best Teacher’ sign. Made me feel like a million bucks. And the following year, Little Corbin’s Mom gave me the subway art that hangs below it. I love them both so much. I truly LOVE my job.
Classroom Kindergarten Preschool Homeschool Decor

It seems that every corner of this classroom is filled with sweet memories of years passed. I feel so blessed every single day.

Classroom You Get What You Get And You Don't Throw A Fit

After a couple years of teacher preschool by myself, I was able to hire a teacher to come teach with me everyday. Ms. Andrea has been a major blessing in my life. This summer, she found this ‘You Get What You Get And You Don’t Throw A Fit’ sign and brought it by for the classroom. We must say that phrase at least a half dozen times every day.
Classroom Baseboard Framed American Flag

‘If it worked for me, it’ll work for them’ … every morning, we place our hands on our hearts and pledge our allegiance to that flag. It’s a simpey $1 American Flag that comes on a wood dowel … you know … the one you wave at the local parade every year? Yep. That el-cheapo one. Superman framed it out with some baseboard and we slapped a piece of glass in it. You can hardly tell that it cost all of $4, total. ;)
And … because I work with a slew of little circus animals each day, we needed some sort of behavior ‘chart’ to help them to be aware of their behavior at all times.

Classroom Magnetic Behavior Chart

Behold: our behavior ‘chart’ …

Classroom Magnetic Behavior Graph

It’s just a piece of sheet metal, covered in vinyl, and framed with baseboard. Superman is a genius … have I said that before?

Classroom Magnetic Behavior

Each kiddo has their own magnet … the goal is to stay on green, obviously … but every now and then someone needs a visual reminder to bring their listening ears to class. ;)

Another new(er) addition is our decorative alphabet and hanging pompoms.

Classroom Vinyl Alphabet Tissue Pom Poms

A friend of mine does vinyl lettering and made the vinyl alphabet for me … I made the pompoms, with the help of a Pinterest tutorial. Holy cow, they’re soooo easy.

Classroom Decorating Ideas Tissue Pom Poms

I actually made the pompoms over Spring Break and surprised the little lovies when they came back from the break.

Classroom Preschool Kindergarten Decorating Ideas

Needless to say, they LOVED them! I just raided Superman’s fishing tackle for some fishing line and strung them up using eyelet screws in the ceiling. I know, I even surprised myself with that crafty plan.

And, while my main goal is to make this room feel like home … even if it’s my ‘office’ … I also strive to be very functional. Every inch of that entertainment center is filled with preschool necessities. After 4+ years, you figure out a few tricks …

Classroom Organization

Sorry … that picture looks a little blurry … even more sorry … I’m too lazy to take another one. ;) I’m a major fan of these $.99 plastic shoe boxes. I must own 100 of them. Not joking.

Classroom Kindergarten Organization

These pencil boxes are also the perfect size for a lot of supplies … and … about 2 weeks after school starts, those babies go on sale for $.10/each. KABAM!

Classroom Organization Preschool

Supplies that no preschool teacher should ever be without or run out of … cannot tell you how many times I have reached for cotton balls for a certain craft and come up empty. It’s the WORST!!! You can’t make rain clouds without cotton balls, people!

Classroom Kindergarten Preschool Homeschool Organization Ideas

I’m telling you … every. single. inch. of these cabinets is filled with preschool nonsense.
I know you’ve seen these rain gutter bookshelves a hundred times on here … but now you can see them in ‘context’. ;)

Classroom Raingutter Bookshelves

And, typically, all of those books are upside down, backwards, sideways, disheveled, and totally unkempt … but I wouldn’t have it any other way. Books are a ginormous part of our lives between the hours of 9am and 12pm, Monday – Friday.

Classroom Preschool Kindergarten Homeschool Raingutter Bookshelves

No classroom could be complete without a short people mirror, framed out with … you guessed it … baseboard. ;) Ms. Andrea and I love watching the vain little circus animals amuse themselves with their silly faces. (ps- I totally left those finger prints on the mirror for you on purpose … wanted to give you the full effect ;)

Classroom Preschool Baseboard Framed Mirror

And …. at the end of the day … it’s still my two favorite kiddos' playroom. Our favorite time is when we can let the swings down and play to our heart’s content … after school hours.

Classroom Preschool Playroom Indoor Swings

If you’re interested in hanging some swings in your home … you can read that tutorial here.