Sunday, January 20

Back to Normal, Giveaway Heads Up and a Cool Product Review

Hi All!
Well, we've been working on getting back to "normal" since my daughter's illness/hospital stay.

Ya know...normal...meaning dealing with stuff like this:
Me-thinks perhaps a bit of excessive blogging (stalking & posting) contributed to letting go?

This happened just prior to my daughter's illness and we just recently got it dealt with...good to know that a spare tire really does work! 

AND - that the Mister and I can change a tire! Trickiest part was figuring out how to get the jack out of its storage compartment!

I highly prefer stalking and posting to the maintenance stuff of life, but I must admit I do feel a lot more productive once "normal" is dealt with! 

I'm on the quest for balance. Sigh.

Shameless Plug #1:
Are you thinking about your shout outs for the February Shout Out Linky? Here's the January one if you'd like more information. February will be posted by February 1st and we'd LOVE to have you!

My Ramp Up to 400 follower giveaway is going to be FAB! Erin Condren, Dreamlike Magic, Ashley Hughes, Susan Moran, Linda Kamp and more! 

Keep your eyes peeled! 

Well...not really.

Product Review
The sweet folks at Barker Creek (Tessa, especially) have EVERY reason to be annoyed with me...

I was to review two of their Draw-Write-Now products in early DECEMBER and I didn't.

My intentions were GREAT. My execution was not.

Better late than never?

So - Tessa sent me two of the books to review and I must say, my students really enjoyed them both.

Even the it's not Thanksgiving any more book! (Sorry to be late!)

There were several great things about these products and I'm so glad I get to keep the titles!

Draw-Write-Now is a series of eight books intended to provide factual information, show how to draw and demonstrate handwriting.

We really loved the visual Table of Contents:
My class went straight for the penguins and polar bear! The kayak was a hit, too!

The format is consistent throughout the book. There is a page containing a beautiful illustration and some factual information followed by a page that shows how to draw the main element of the illustration.

Here are a few pages:

My first graders worked with a partner to read and draw and were able to handle these texts well!

At the end of each informational page there is an inferential question that leads to nice discussion. The two questions above:
Air Migration: How do birds know where to go?
Wolf: Why are the northern wolves white?

I really enjoyed these books and will use them in my Illustration Station. I may just have to use them to brush up on my own illustrating, too!

The combination of informing and illustrating was just right for my kiddos!

Go check them out right here...

Thanks so much for a fun and educational product, Barker Creek!


  1. Glad things have gone back to "normal" for your family! That laundry room appearance definitely is a normal occurrence for me!

    Your 400 follower giveaway seems absolutely fantastic! I cannot wait! Those prizes are going to make someone a very lucky person!

    The Draw-Write-Now books look great! I need one of them to practice my drawing! I can't even draw an arctic loon!


  2. Those Draw-Write-NOW books look amazingggg! I think my kids would love those!

    Happy long weekend, Lisa!


    T.G.I.F. (Thank God it's First Grade!)

  3. 1. Glad your family is getting back to normal :)
    2. I know how a flat tire feels. My old car got one at school while my husband was 45 minutes away. My principal's husband ended up changing it for me. Since it was on the front, we had to change two tires :)
    3. I cannot wait to see what you are up to for your giveaway. You definitely come up with some cool stuff and if the people listed are on board, it's going to be amazing!
    4. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the books! They are great and my kids would love them. I will definitely be looking into getting them for my classroom :)

  4. I would take snuggling and blogstalking any day over laundry. Although... I am blessed, the hubby is a little (lot) OCD and does all the laundry for his four girls! :) Like... as soon as it comes off, it's back and ready to be put away.
    I'm super excited about your giveaway! Congrats!!! You're A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!!!!!


  5. So happy your daughter is feeling better and that normalcy is setting back in (hopefully). :)
    Love those books and am excited for your giveaway!

    Learning With Mrs. Leeby

  6. So glad you guys are getting back to normal (with all the annoyances that go along with, i.e. laundry and flat tires)! :)
    Justin- Writing Pad Dad
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  7. Yay! I love Draw-Write-Now books and have used them for years! I started using them with my Kinders as a writing center many moons ago and they loved them! I still use them on occasion with my second graders with some of our social studies topics.

    I'm in the same boat as you with the laundry! It has to wait though because I swear I'm not going back to school until I get at least a few days ahead on planning!

    Congrats on your upcoming 400 follower giveaway!

  8. So glad everything is getting back to normal!
    Very happy to hear that!
    Enjoy the rest of your weekend!
    Ms. Marciniak's First Grade Critter Cafe


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