Sunday, October 27, 2013

Gobble Gobble!

Okay, okay, we may not have even celebrated Halloween yet, but just like all the retail stores out there, I'd like to hop on the Thanksgiving bandwagon!  November 1st is only a week away, which means I need to start planning my Thanksgiving dinner.  This year is a special one, and should be interesting, because for the first time yet, I'll be hosting a family get-together and serving a FEAST!  ...Scary!  So far I know my mom is going to bring gravy, mashed potatoes, her delicious sweet potato casserole with the brown sugar crunchy topping (my FAVORITE!), and Swedish apple pie.  YUM!  Sam and I will take care of the turkey, and Sam is hoping his mom will make her pumpkin pie, but ...well, the rest has yet to be decided.  I'm starting to get some great ideas from good ol' Pinterest!

Everything looks TOO GOOD!

I also have been starting to get my act together with Thanksgiving TpT projects/activities. I just finished my first one, called Invite a Pilgrim to Thanksgiving Dinner, which is a creative and persuasive writing project meant for 3rd-6th graders. 

The basic premise of the project is students need to write a persuasive letter inviting a Plimoth Plantation Pilgrim who has time-traveled to the present to their family's Thanksgiving Dinner.  To do this, kiddos need to research The First Thanksgiving.

They will record their findings on the graphic organizer above.  Next, they will fill out a similar GO on their own family's Thanksgiving traditions, and then use a Venn diagram to compare their traditions to The First Thanksgiving.  

After a lot of preliminary work, students will examine and discuss the above example persuasive letter, and eventually write their own.  They will focus on the friendly letter format, writing an introduction to a letter/invitation, using persuasive language, comparing/contrasting, and writing a conclusion. They will be writing across many genres all the while letting their creative juices flow!

This product comes with teacher directions, objective/goal posters written in student-friendly language, vocabulary posters, a scoring rubric, an editing/revising checklist, and final draft paper. 

For the culminating activity, students will create a paper plate turkey invitation to go along with their persuasive letter. Don't you love him?!

Check out my Invite a Pilgrim to Thanksgiving Dinner Project and Craftivity here at TpT!  I hope you enjoy it!

Best Wishes for the week ahead!

XO <3, C

Saturday, October 26, 2013

A Chocolate Dudley has been SKUNKED!

Well friends, it is safe to say I had a smelly boy on my hands last night!  As many of you already know, the inevitable happened.  A certain skunk that lives under the next door neighbor's shed sprayed his cutest victim yet!  Yup, The Chocolate Dudley himself was sprayed. At 6:30 PM. Right before we were about to set out on the road. To drop Dudley off with my parents. So Sam and I could spend the weekend in Boston.  MAJOR disappointment!

Sam was busy sanding the trim in the downstairs bathroom, while I was FINALLY finishing up a Thanksgiving Creative Writing Project (Can't wait to share it later this weekend!), when Sam smelled something a little odd.  He poked his head outside to call Dudley in, and the D-man was no where to be found.  After a bit of calling, Duds made his way up to do the deck, foaming, frothing, and drooling!  My gut instinct was to take him in the house because hello?! there was a skunk outside!  Within about 2 seconds, we quickly realized the house was the wrong place for Dudley!  He had already been skunked!  

We tied poor Dudley to the deck railings, gave him a bowl of water in case he wanted to rinse his mouth out, and then I called the emergency vet.  Their number is posted to our fridge because I call them at least 3 times a year, which may seem silly, but most times I contact them he ends up needing a visit and prescriptions.  This time the vet was extremely helpful over the phone, and provided us with a recipe for de-skunking.  Keep this handy, everyone!  It helps very much!

Mix the following:
-1 quart of hydrogen peroxide
-1/4 cup of baking soda
-1 tablespoon of dish detergent

Sam and I hosed Dudley down, and used a loofah to work the frothy suds into his fur and skin.  Afterwards, we had to let the concoction sit on him for about 5 minutes until it was time to rinse, towel dry, and then repeat.  We bathed him two times, which really did the trick!  This was the very first bath he disliked, and the first time he didn't pounce on the hose.  :( Instead, he cried while we rinsed him as he was shaking from the cold.  This broke my heart.

I'd like to say he has learned his lesson, but honestly? Of course he has not!  He thinks all furry animals are meant to be played with!

Now it's up to  Sam and me to take care of this skunk.  We heard through the grapevine a sock soaked with gasoline can be dropped into a skunk's burrow to encourage the skunk to find a new home.  That sounds great and all, but just one question- How will we put it there without getting skunked ourselves?!

 One sad and chilly puppy.
 Still drooling, but not nearly as much since we had rinsed his mouth out by this point.

Thank you to our neighbor who gave us a bucket of supplies and bottles of hydrogen peroxide!  Dudley's eyes are fine now.  Who needs Saline Solution?

XO <3, C

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Fab Math Vocab!

I FINALLY finished the 3rd Grade Common Core Math Vocabulary Posters for the second half of the year to go along with enVision MATH.  OH MY WORD there are so many important words in Topics 9 - 16! Even if you don't normally dedicate a bulletin board or special area to math vocabulary, I highly suggest having some sort of visuals on hand because the language in the second half of the year becomes extremely intense.  Think of all the vocabulary that comes along with fractions (numerator, denominator, mixed number, equivalent, simplest form, etc.), geometry (point, line, line segment, ray, polygon, trapezoid, rhombus, etc.), and measurement (capacity, weight, mass, inch, foot, mile, etc.)! YIKES!

I hope you will find the posters I created helpful for you and your students.  Take a sneak peek...

The above are just a few examples of the posters, and I am not stressing few lightly.  In total there are almost 110 vocabulary words! 

Just so you get the picture, take a look here...

YIKES!  If you're interested, you can find the Grade 3 Common Core Math Vocabulary Posters here at TpT.

As always, thanks for reading and for your support!  Happy Wednesday!

XO <3, C

P.S. You may be interested in reading my original blog post on 3rd Grade Math Vocabulary Posters (Topics 1-8) here.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Happy Campers on the Cape

How was everyone's LONG weekend? 

Sam, Dudley, and I had an awesome weekend camping with my parents at Nickerson State Park on the Cape.

These two pictures were taken soon after first arriving and setting up our little two-person tent.  You would think the tent would be perfect for Sam and I, but be aware, Dudley slept in the tent with us!  We ended up being quite cozy, which made for a bad night sleep on the first night.  At least we were toasty warm, even when the temperature hit a chilly 39 degrees on the second night!

We began our first day of camping by heading out to lunch, and then taking a walk around the park.  Dad stayed behind as he preferred to hang out by the fire with Marshal, who very much enjoyed his "camping" kennel!

 My beautiful mum was bundled up for Arctic temperatures on our walk and for most of the long weekend!

We took the Flax Pond trail and discovered the beginnings of beautiful fall foliage!  The only problem- keeping Dudley out of the water so we wouldn't be sleeping with a wet puppy that evening!

 You can bet Dudley wanted to keep trekking through the grass towards the pond,...

 and of course Sam kept us entertained the entire time!

The first night we hung around the campfire, dining on homemade soup, cornbread, and apple crisp!  Yum!
Dudley enjoyed relaxing by the fire from a distance.  Maybe because he once burned his nose on a campfire when he was a puppy?
The following day, we made the drive out to Provincetown.  We lucked out with the weather!  What a gorgeous day!
Unfortunately, this was the only whale we saw as all whale watch trips were cancelled due to rough waters. 
Instead, we had an absolutely delicious lunch at the Lobster Pot.  The restaurant reminds me of The Lobster Pot in Bristol, RI where Sam and I had our rehearsal dinner.  I highly suggest the bread bowl of clam chowder!  Amazing!

 After lunch, we took a few more touristy photos.  Here you can see Mom, Dad, and Dudley as "the cat"! We shopped around a bit and may or may not have picked up a Christmas present for a certain someone.  Of course, we could not leave without purchasing some delicious homemade fudge!
Since the whale watches were cancelled, Sam wanted to check out the Pilgrim Monument.  This was his first trip to P-town and The Cape so the two of us went to the top, while Dad hung out in the car, and Mom watched Dudley outside the monument museum. The Pilgrim Monument was built in the early 1900s to commemorate the Pilgrim's voygage to the New World.  It was built on The Cape because the Mayflower first landed in Provincetown.  The Pilgrims actually spent a bit over a month exploring Cape Cod, before they finally sailed on to Plymouth. 
Much to our surprise, we noticed a little (and sleepy!) fox hanging out in front of the monument.  It seemed to pay little attention to the visitors walking by. 

After hiking up the ramps that covered 116 steps, we made it to the top of the monument.  The view was gorgeous, and I loved seeing ocean from almost every angle! 

Dad wanted to stop by a beach on the way "home" from P-town so Sam could see some beautiful Cape Cod dunes.  We ended up missing the beach Dad wanted to visited, so we stopped here, at Pilgrim Heights, instead.  The Pilgrim Spring Trail begins at this location, and even though we didn't have a chance to take it, I was excited to learn the trail has a special marker pointing out the spot where it is believed the Pilgrims first discovered fresh water.  

We finally made it to a beach just before sunset.  Sam, the dogs, and I were the only ones interested in playing!  Sam and I explored the dunes, and then let the dogs out for a quick break from the car.  Again, we had the challenge of keeping D out of the water!

The second evening was a bit more chilly!  We enjoyed steak, beans, and s'mores while hanging by the fireside!

Above is the view of Flax Pond across the street from our campsites.  I'm thankful for the beautiful long fall weekend spent outdoors with family! It was great to show Sam Nickerson State Park, where my family and I have made many camping memories, as well as create new memories with Sam and my parents!

Dudley, who enjoyed himself very much, was all tuckered out on the ride home. 

Talk to you soon, friends!

XO <3, C