Sunday, July 21, 2013

Let the Creating Begin


Summer is in full swing, but school is right around the corner. It’s hard to believe it will be happening (for me at least) in a few weeks. The stores have begun putting out all of their supplies. ( Some stores are already picked over- How can that be???) Oh the supplies all aligned in tidy little rows gets me every time. With all the supplies being put out, I figured it was time to begin creating some of the numerous things I have pinned this year. Oh My Word there are so many awesome ideas, but never enough time. When searching and pinning, I try to think about what I already have in my craft storage.   I won’t even show you a picture. It is way too embarrassing. Can you just say mini-craft store. I guess that is a tad bit acceptable due to the fact  I owned a craft and collectibles shop for about ten years. It all begin innocently!!! My mom and I started creating wreaths and wooden crafts to sell at local craft shows when my son was younger. That small business snowballed into opening a gift shop. (My mom had finally fulfilled her life-long dream!!) We had a great ten year run with Spare Thyme Creations, but like they say “all good things must come to an end”.  Life always throws in a few curve balls and you must say good-bye and move forward. I do miss the store and all the customers, (we met some wonderful people over the years!!) but one bonus. Having a wide array of craft things to use at my disposal. What does one do with all that stuff???? Hmmmmmmmmmmm

Creating Some Classroom Goodies…

Well, one thing that drove me absolutely buggy last year was my classroom library. I loved how organized it was (Thanks Mom!!) but I had a few kiddos that would go through the books, but they never returned them to their proper bin. (grrrrr) My motto is a misplaced book is a “lost” book. Even with endless modeling some kids are just a “hot mess” and have no understanding of the words organized, tidy, neat, etc.

While, enjoying a summer evening, I ran across this picture on pinterest from Julie of Light a Fire Blog. Let’s just say, the light bulb went off!!!


I knew immediately this was something I had to add to my classroom for the 2013-2014 school year!!! I already use student number sticks, but wanted to create something that could be stored in the library and that students could easily grab when searching for a book.

Making Student Numbered Sticks

Step One: Gather Supplies

supplies for library numbers

Step Two: Print Out Numbers (I created a few different packs and plan to create a few more. I did make one pack simply using different black and white backgrounds and the glitter paper and placed if for free in my TPT store. (See the picture below to snag it up!!)


Step Three: Trim up your paper. I opted to cut these out using a circular hole punch (2.5” in diameter) Oh My Goodness I love these punches!!! Just can’t get enough!! I think I may have a shape punch addiction. I snagged this baby using a Michaels 40% off coupon!!! Wooo Hooo I love Michael’s. Did you know they have a teacher discount?? Simply show them your school id at the checkout!!!

 lib 3

Step Four: Punch Punch Punch

lib 2

Step Five: Laminate!!! I opted to cut and then laminate and cut again. You could probably save yourself a step and laminate the sheets first then cut.

lib 4

Step Six: Glue your numbers onto sticks. I had these XL popsicle sticks in a bin so I decided to use them.

lib 5

Step Seven: Place in a container!! I am going to use a labeled coffee can to store my sticks in the library. (This isn’t the can, but gives you a rough idea.)






In my TPT Shop for $1.00







Always, Melissa

Monday, July 15, 2013

Happy Birthday to You

How do you celebrate birthdays in your classroom? Do you go all out or do you keep them tame and mild. I love to celebrate birthdays and try my best to make the day special for my kiddos. Last year, I created my polka dot birthday d├ęcor packet because I couldn’t find anything that matched my theme. I added some additional things for my kiddos and thought I need to update my packet and share them with you too!! {Click Picture Below to head over to “Operation Cupcake: my old blog post}


Some updates I made to the packet include

Rectangular Pencil Flags (by popular request) My original packet had cupcake shaped toppers but many wanted something easy to cut. ( I love to cut and you can often find me in front of the t.v. with scissors in hand watching my favorite t.v. shows)

pencil flag

My Polka Dotted Birthday Bag Tags

Add these adorable tags to your birthday goodies for your kiddos. My birthday bags included a jumbo cupcake shape eraser, glo-stick bracelets, and a cupcake paint yourself sun-catcher. We have a “strict” no sweets rule so I knew I had to make my birthday goodie bags extra special and sweet.


Cupcake Gift Booklet

These booklets were a huge hit with my kiddos all year. I actually got this idea from another teacher (Thanks JC)in my building who gives out a certificate for “free” drinks to her kiddos on their birthday. I always loved the idea, but thought I would add a few more coupons to “sweeten” the pot. The cupcake booklet included a few coupons for them to utilize immediately or throughout the year. In the packet I included several coupons, but I randomly selected 5-6 coupons per cupcake. These cost nadda and the kiddos “loved” them. Once the first kiddo gets their cupcake booklet, the others will begin counting down the days until their birthday.


I also added birthday badges a.k.a stickers and birthday balloons to the updated packet.

Head on over to my TPT shop and snag it up or if you are one of the lucky ones who already purchased just go re-download the newest version.


Always, Melissa


P.S. Tell me how you make your kiddos feel special on their birthday!!

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