Hot Cocoa Curriculum

Good morning! 

Nothing warms you on the inside like a big steamy mug of hot chocolate when it’s BRRRR cold outside. With marshmallows!

It’s that time of year! This week we are doing Hot Chocolate Curriculum. Reading and writing and math and science. The whole curriculum in a mug! 

We’ll count marshmallows, adding and subtracting them from our paper mugs we will each color. We’ll play sight word bingo using marshmallows as our markers. We’ll read books about hot chocolate. We’ll spell words like hot and mug and cup. We’ll take the temperature of hot chocolate in a plastic cup, Styrofoam cup, and ceramic cup seeing which retains heat better. We’ll make hot chocolate with cold water, warm water and hot water and see which dissolves the powder better. And we’ll wear our pajamas and drink hot chocolate and watch Polar Express.  

Why not pull up a comfy seat, pour yourself a cup of steaming hot chocolate, and slowly sip it as you get lost in God’s word today? Just taste and see how good he is! ☕

Taste and see that the Lord is good. Psalm 34:8

Love and laughter,

Sandy

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The Right Stuff

Good morning! 

Last Tuesday night we ordered Mazzios’ delivery for dinner. 

School would be out for the remainder of the week. We would be driving to Dallas the next morning for a few days full of family festivities. With food being the focus. 

So we wanted a quiet, intimate evening spent in that was light with no leftovers for dinner. Delivery? Yes! Wings and a salad to share was called in as our choice. In case you didn’t know, that’s one of Tulsa’s best kept secrets, Mazzios’ wings. They trump their pizza. 

The total was $22.20.

When the doorbell rang and the delivery man handed me our dinner, I reciprocated with his cash. I had several $5.00 bills in my wallet, so I grabbed six of them, handed them to him, and told him “Happy Thanksgiving!”  

Moments later the doorbell rang. The delivery driver stood at the door with a $100 bill in his hand. He said he believed I overpaid. I gave him the wrong amount. I inadvertently had grabbed the $100 bill in my wallet behind my fives. Offering him one hundred dollars as his tip rather than five. 

He was a man of great character. And integrity. He did what was right. Just like Benjamin Franklin, one of our founding fathers, whose face can be found on the bill.

How about you? Has your life exemplified such great character that your face could be dollar bill material?

Let’s all do what is right. And I’m sure you can guess the rest of the story.  I made a call back to Mazzios, and reported their driver. Caught in the act. Caught in the act of doing something good. Doing the right thing. Let’s hope his boss praised him, too, for doing the right thing!

Let’s all take that challenge. Let’s try to catch others doing something right. And when we do, let’s offer them praise! It’s the right thing to do!

To do what is right and just is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice.  Proverbs 21:3

Love and laughter,

Sandy

I Believe 

Good morning! 

It’s December. 18 more school days, so I’m told, until Christmas break. 

This week my lesson plans take the theme of “I believe.” 

We all know this time of year is about believing. But too much focus is placed upon believing in that jolly old fellow in the red suit. For low income families that can make your holidays very bleak. 

How about changing it up a little? Believing instead in that baby in the manger? Or for public schools’ sake, believing in yourself? 

That’s my focus.

Oh sure, the stockings will be hung with care for each student in room 309. And each will be filled regardless of whether they are naughty or nice. 

We kicked off our plan with Macy’s Make A Wish letters to Santa. Instead of petsonal wants, each wrote about something big that they wished for, for our world, outside of themselves.

I want my students to believe in real things. Things they can count on. Not just things they can outgrow or are make believe. Their world already has enough they can’t count on. I want to teach them to believe in themselves. Their goals. Their dreams. That nothibg is impossible. That they can accomplish anything through Christ who strengthens them. To start finding things they are interested in for hobbies and careers. And how to ask for help to reach those goals. With reliable resources. 

Resources in our school. Our community. And our living God. Something bigger than themselves to trust and believe in.

And Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. He will come to room 309. But only if you believe. 

I’ve already dealt with one of my older students telling a younger one that there is no tooth fairy. As I told him, “You don’t believe, you don’t receive.” He suddenly became a believer. 😉

Let’s all believe. Let’s believe in ourselves. And let’s believe in the one, true God. So we can receive. Receive his gift of eternal life. It began this time of year with believing in his son. That’s the best Christmas present around. 

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.                        Philippians 4:13

Love and laughter,

Sandy

Busyness

Good morning! 

This week I have meetings or some sort of training every day of the week! Staff meeting on Monday. Behavior plan training on Tuesday. IEP meeting on Wednesday. DLM testing training on Thursday. Behavior plan meeting on Friday. 

That’s the part I like the least about my job. All the after school work.  That and all the paperwork. It often overwhelms me.  But that’s ok. it’s all worth it. When my kids enter the door. And some says, when they exit it. 😉After all, didn’t I just have the last three days off? 😊  

And once my work week is completed, I plan to finish it off by joining my husband at the first Friday art crawl. No pun intended.  I’ll probably be crawling after my full week of school, and all it’s after school requirements.

If it wasn’t for my smartphone, and all my alarms and calendar, I could never keep up. 

And then there’s Christmas to add to the mix with all its gift buying and festivities to schedule in. 

How about you? Is your calendar overbooked?  Do you rarely have a moment to be still?

Don’t get me wrong, I love my life! Sometimes I’m just so busy, I don’t know if I’m coming or going. That’s when I need to stop. And be still. And remember.

I want my life to be full. Not just my calendar. With the good stuff. The right stuff. Not just “busyness”. I know I have to take care of my “business” which I have little control over, but not my busyness. That I can control.

Let’s all take a moment each day especially before the holidays approach, and be still. And remember. And know He is God. 

We don’t have to do it all. Just the good stuff. The right stuff. The stuff God has put before us in his plan. The rest, the busyness, is sometimes the work of the devil to distract us from what we really should be focusing on each day. 

Here’s to clearing off some of the busyness from our lives. Clearing some space off our calendars each day. To just be still, spend a little time with our Father, and know He is God.

Be still and know that I am God.    Psalm 46:10

Love and laughter,

Sandy

Prayer in the Classroom

Good morning! 

Beginning with the June 25, 1962, United State’s Supreme Court landmark case, 370 U.S. 421, Engel vs Vitale, we no longer have prayer in schools. Separation of church and state. 

Being a new teacher, I abide by it. Out loud that is. 😉

The other day, I have to tell you, I saw the most precious thing go down in room 309. Several of my students were at the computers working. Two of my older boys were sitting next to each other. They were getting ready to each take a Reading Counts test. You read a book and take a test over it on the computer, and then get points for it.  Those points in 25 point increments then turn into beads on a chain for each student in the school.

All of a sudden the one boy folded his hands and loud and clear began to pray! “Dear God, help me take this test. I love you man!” The other one chimed in beside him. I thought I was going to fall out of my chair! Priceless. Out of the mouths of babes!

I live in the bible belt, the city with the world’s largest praying hands made of 39 tons of bronze, so prayer is no stranger to me. But coming from two little boys so impromptu caught me off guard. It was absolutely priceless. 

That’s the kind of peer pressure I want in my classroom!

In spite of some of the challenges we face working in a title 1 school with language deficits, broken homes, and poverty running rampant, somewhere, somehow, somebody did something right.

Here’s to prayer in the classroom, and the naivety of young men that don’t know or understand that it’s been taken away. That’s one lesson where hands on training is mandatory! 

I love you boys! ❤

Pray without ceasing.                              1 Thessalonian’s 5:17

Love and laughter,

Sandy

Hostess With The Mostest

Good morning! 

We recently headed south. Not like the birds for the winter, but rather to the Dallas area for Thanksgiving.

We stayed with my brother and sister in law and nephew in their beautiful home. 

What a treat! 

My sweet sister in law puts the mostest in the phrase “hostess with the mostest”.  

It was like staying at The Ritz, but better! This was waiting for us in the bathroom. Our own personal toiletries. Plus toothbrushes! The Ritz doesn’t even do that! 

She and her sister both definitely have the gift of hospitality. Fabulous entertainers. Both have a way of making others feel welcomed and loved. It’s a gift. A gift I graciously received from them this past Thanksgiving. 

Before you get out pen and paper and start making out those Christmas lists, remember this, it’s better to give than receive. Give the gift of hospitality. 

Let’s all be hospitable to others. Especially at this Christmas time of year when lines are longer and patience are shorter. My parents always taught me to leave the front door open. Invite guests in with a welcoming heart. Anyone who needs a place to go. It’s what we’re called to do.

Thank you Kim! And Paige! ❤❤

Be hospitable to one another without complaint.                                                  1 Peter 4:9

Love and laughter,

Sandy

You ain’t from my town if you haven’t ate this.

Good morning! 

I recently heard this on KLOVE radio. For listeners to call in about.

“You ain’t from my town if you haven’t ate this.”

I’m not so sure about the grammar, but I am sure that we all have our local favorites.

In Tulsa, it’s hands down, Coney I-Lander. 

How about you? What food is your hometown known for?

Speaking of food, I think I consumed more calories yesterday than I normally do in an entire month! I was more stuffed than the turkey!  There were deviled eggs, mashed potatoes and gravy, mac and cheese, three kinds of dressing: traditional with Italian sausage, jalepeno pecan, and cornbread, turkey, corn souffle, sweet potatoes, green beans, cheese puffs, cranberry sauce, and rolls. And then there was pie. Pumpkin, pecan, key lime, cheesecake, and cookies.

I have to say, after yesterday, a coney is sounding pretty good to me today. 

What is it about eating an extremely large meal, a week of vacation or cruise food, and you come home and want local comfort food?

Do you know what else provides us comfort? Jesus. 

After all, it is black Friday. Why not turn to him today? For comfort. He’s the originator of black Friday. I’m not talking about shopping deals here. I’m talking about the day the world went black when he took his last breath.

Let’s all relax today. Eat our leftovers or our comfort food. Shop ’til we drop. But when it’s all said and done, let’s seek Jesus for our true source of comfort.

Comfort, yes, comfort my people! says your God.                                            Isaiah 40:1

Love and laughter,

Sandy