Monday, October 10, 2016

Not the Chef

Today is my husband's birthday. I am super lucky that he is an amazing and talented man.  I am even more lucky that he is a Classically Trained Executive Chef, because..let it be known.. I can't (well.. maybe more of don't) cook. Now, I can microwave really well.. and drive thru I have down! I also enjoy watching him work in the kitchen and I get to stir items occasionally.
Chef William and Chef Gonzo at their last catering gig. Check out his Facebook page for more information
With it being the beginning of the year, and my first Girl Scout meeting happened last week.. there are a couple of treats that I am totally capable of making!

Last year I became the leader for Troop 1810 and oh my goodness.. I just LOVE those girls! But our first meeting last year, I realized that there was no one to bring snacks.  When talking to my mom, she reminded me that Nuglet (my troop leader Nancy) used to make the best snacks ever! Remember how I said I don't cook.. well this was right up my alley! Graham crackers with chocolate icing! I have now made this first meeting tradition of having graham crackers with chocolate icing.  The girls seem to enjoy it (and no real cooking involved)

Each girl got one graham cracker and a half of spoon of chocolate to make their own graham cracker cookie

But, there is an item that I LOVE TO COOK/BAKE.  Cakies! Cakies are that treat that we used to make at my house for family events, Christmas, Girl Scouts or anytime that we needed to bring a snack.  Super easy to make and so very yummy.

Throw back to my sister and I helping clean the bowl after we had made a batch of cakies

Favorite thing about cakies- they are easy to make (don't worry.. I am going to share the recipe!) Not only are they easy, but they are so yummy as well. I love that I can make these treats as a thank you to staff and leave them in the lounge or take them with me to meetings.

Put these out at the beginning of the year for staff

I said I would share the recipe!
1 egg
½ cup of brown sugar
1 stick of butter (softened)
½ cup of oil
2 cups of oats
1 box of cake mix
¼ cup of water as needed
-Preheat oven to 375
-grease an 8x12 glass casserole dish
-mix egg, brown sugar, butter, oil
-add 1 cup of oats and ½ of cake box mix
-mix together
-add 1 cup of oats and ½ of cake box mix
-mix well add water if needed
-spread mixture in casserole dish
-bake for 20-25 minutes
-let cool

Side note: When I was younger.. I even made macaroni and cheese that the dog (that ate EVERYTHING) wouldn't even eat.. my cooking skills have grown a little since then :)

Next up on the agenda- EdCampDallas.. and I have been blogging about Library Land over at Bee in the Bookends AND.. did you see my awesome new blog design? My friend Carrie (aka Heck Awesome) did an AMAZING job redesigning this blog and my Bee in the Bookends! I mean seriously- go check her out @HeckAwesome and her website.  I am in LOVE with it!

Sunday, April 24, 2016

A Different Kind of Mother- National Infertility Week 2016

Mother's Day is quickly approaching, but this week (April 24th-30th, 2016) is National Infertility Awareness Week 2016 
I have posted about our journey in several places: Here-2014 and Here-2015

This quote sums up so greatly how this year has been.  I began this year finishing up my #summerofcreating you can find that blog here I was in my great little backyard pool and was contemplating all that I had done that summer, my life where it is, and what I want my next adventure to look like. I realized all the things I have and I also thought about how I could get the things I want.  I have a wonderful husband who is on this crazy wild ride with me and we are always up for an adventure!

Small disclaimer: I know that everyone is on their own journey.  Although I will get sad during Mother's Day, I am extremely happy for all the families and parents I know.  I am lucky to be surrounded about amazing families and parents.

Well, the title of this blog is a Different Kind of Mother:
I realize that I am not actually a "mother" to any of these great things, NOR do I want to replace their wonderful mothers! This is only a list of how I am hopefully making a small difference in lives that I am able to surround myself with.
-I am a different kind of Mother to 2 great puppies
-I am a different kind of Mother to all of the Destination ImagiNation teams I manage
-I am a different kind of Mother to the now freshman that I was a nanny for
-I am a different kind of Mother to the different students I have had a chance to work with
-I am a different kind of Mother to the Daisy Troop that I now lead

I am a different kind of Mother.  The Hashtag for NIAW is #startasking and for me I started asking myself how I am changing others lives.  That is what being a mother is.. right? A mother is one who shows love, affection, strength and so much more. You don't have to be biological.  I hope that I am able to make a difference in the lives that I come in contact with.  I am okay being a Different kind of Mother and pretty proud of that as well. I am still on an infertility journey.  I am back on birth control pills to help with my PCOS.  This summer I had the realization and calmness to know that I am not going to be a biological mother.  I am at peace with this, but there are times that I still get sad (I am human) But, I look back at that first quote and see all that I have.  I am able to get what I want in a different form.  I will continue to #startasking how I can be a different kind of Mother.

Today was my first meeting as Daisy troop leader..and how lucky am I to have such a great group of girls! I brought one of my favorite snacks that my troop leader used to make. Graham crackers with chocolate frosting. I think they went over well. Thank you to all the families that have allowed me in their lives..and I can't wait to start this new adventure! #happyheart #girlscouts #gs1810#memories #nuglet #blessed

What a fantastic Monday! Ended it on our first outing as a Girl Scout troop. Yes.. my bear has 9 hearts...representing each girl in my troop. The name.. Warm Lace.. which is the first letter of each of the girls name. Blessed doesn't even begin to describe my love for this troop and their families!#gsnetx #gs1810 #girlscouts

To those that might be on their own infertility journey, I wish you luck.. I wish you peace.. and I wish you LOTS of love!  It is a tough journey, but then so is life.  Good luck on whatever journey you might be on.

#librarianintraining #TxLA16

WOW! My brain is so full.  I always learn ideas from different conferences and connections made to conferences, but #TxLA16 was AMAZING! I drove down Tuesday morning (after all of the terrible rain! The conference was in Houston and the weather on Monday was unbelievable, my heart and thoughts are still with that community)  I did have a chance to swing by Navasota ISD and get a tour of Webb Elementary from my friend Todd (if you don't follow @techninjatodd you need to!) I got into Houston and checked in and got ready for some great sessions.  BEST part of the whole week.. I got to spend some super valuable time with Skye!  I got to pick her brain the WHOLE week.
Here are a few of my notes: (now.. this is a picture heavy blog.. but who doesn't love pictures!)
If you don't want to check out all the pictures, here are my favorite takeaways (but, I learned SO much) Be sure to check out #txla16

-Ramp up Bluebonnet reading with a Bluebonnet Bash
-Have Battle of the Books
-Shelfie pictures of favorite books with Genres
-Be involved in Planning
-EVERYTHING from Mellissa Sanchez's session!
-Hosts contest throughout the year

I was able to connect with so many people, but I was SO excited to finally meet Matthew Winner. His kickball session was HILARIOUS!  I have just started this journey to becoming a librarian, but I felt so at home with all of this librarians.  I am excited to use my technology background and infuse that into a library.  I know that I have so much to learn and so much that I want to do. I also know that a blog can not even cover how awesome this week was and all that I learned.

This woman right here inspires me daily.  When I grow up, I want to be just like Skye!

Max got to watch the Wild Rumpus

Meeting Matthew Winner!

My selfie with the AWESOME panel

Saturday, March 12, 2016

DI, Masters, New Puppy OH MY!

Resolutions and goals are meant to be broken.. right?

I am spending my last 2 days of spring break with big goals.. that is.. I am on the last 3 movies of Harry Potter, I finished a book, AND I am almost to zero inbox in ALL OF MY EMAILS! With that being said.. I had to file some email bankruptcy.. I filed the things I knew I needed.. and I trashed the rest.  I apologize now if I have not responded to one of your emails and I hope you understand.

So what has the busy bee been up to?  In February my friend told me about an adoption weekend going on. So we headed to the pound... just to look.  We had to put down our first duck Wolfgang (beautiful collie) about 2 years ago at the same time we went to look at the pound.  Walked in and we found Jax! Jax is a 2 year old Australian Shepherd..and we couldn't be happier having this new addition to the family.

Destination ImagiNation competition was February 27th.  This year we took 6 teams (4 competitive and 2 rising stars).  One of the big things about Destination ImagiNation is the crazy hats.  This year I decided that we needed to make our own crowns!  Check out these beauties myself and our other team managers are wearing.  They are made with lace that has been put in fabric stiffener.  We then painted them and added them to a headband.  Super easy.. AND so much more comfortable than some of the hats that I have worn in the past.

We had 2 teams place this year. Our Nerdy Birdy Trio + 1 placed 3rd and our P.E.E.P.S. placed 5th.  SUPER PROUD of how all the teams did (and SUPER THANKFUL for all the volunteers and parents that made the day run smoothly!)
Only the BEST Destination ImagiNation Team Managers #teamelliottDI #neverlearnedtosayno

I am still going strong with my masters classes and have already learned so much more about being a librarian really entails (and loving every minute of it!) I love that I am able to stay busy and try new things.  

Friday, January 1, 2016

Happy New Year from a BUSY Bee

Many people watched the ball drop and started making their New Year Resolutions.  I have not made resolutions in awhile.. as they last me all of January if I am lucky.  What I have started doing the first of the year is creating a vision board.  My husband and I usually create a goal board before school starts (as this is how my years run)

Vision board 2016

I have lots of dreams this year.  My biggest dream is to get to Disney World in August!  But I really want to be more present in what I am doing.  I also have discovered that I am one that stays busy (I mean.. I already knew this.. but I am just putting it out there).  I LOVE being busy (much to the disdain of my husband sometimes.. I mean he loves me.. but I do stay busy!)

So, am I changing my schedule.. NOPE! I am even starting another Masters in a few weeks (which I am oh so very excited about!) I am going to be busy with a purpose.  In passing conversation people will often ask me (as I do the same to them) how you are you doing.  I usually answer with.. there are not enough hours in the day.  But there are enough hours.  We all have the same amount of hours.  I am going to change my answer.  I am going to be able to give specific answers to what I am working on or what I am currently into.  I have plenty of hours in the day to do the things that I want to do.  

My vision for this year- to be busy.. but be happy about what I am busy with.. and to be a champion for myself and for those around me. I want to read more.. I am going to journal every day.. and I am going to be more present when I am with the company of my friends.  I am going to enjoy life and continue to do those activities that make me busy... but also make my heart happy.

I look forward to an exciting 2016 with lots of new adventures and many more dreams.

Cheers to a New Year with the BUSY Bee!

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Think Out Be Light

5 days.. 5 more school days until I have a break!
This month I have checked several things off my list...
-completing my application to TWU for Masters of Library Science
-decorating/participating in the Irving Holiday Parade
-Leader/daughter social for the Irving Girl Scouts

BUT.. yesterday afternoon.. I was able to check off the Think Out Be Light Event.
I participated in this event last year, and jumped at the opportunity to participate again.
This weekend made me sit back and remember that no matter how busy my schedule.. no matter what I am doing..that I can be a part of something so much bigger.

Think out Be Light was put on by Elisia Magazine and featured models that had various abilities. I mean.. how can you not love this!?!  All of these beautiful models are from the Notre Dame School

I packed up my Jamberry items and headed to UNT Dallas so I could be one of the vendors.  This time, however, not only was I a vendor... I got to do all the nails for the models!  I had so much fun pampering these girls.  I purchased one of the new Jamberry Celebration boxes which had enough wraps for all the girls to have 2 accent nails... and they all walked away with a party favor.  Now, don't worry, once they had their accent nails done they got to choose which lacquer they wanted to finish up their manicure.

This isn't a Jamberry blog though (well it kind of If it wasn't for Jamberry I wouldn't have ever met Feleceia Benton.. and her amazing friends such as Arian Nicole and the rest of the crew.

This is the season where we often forget how important it is to be good to our neighbors.  To make a difference in someones life. Now, don't think that you have to do something outrageous.. but do you know how far a smile goes?  Have you told the local police officer that you appreciate them?  Have you taken a moment of your day to hold the door open or give a compliment?

The Think out Be Light event was that reminder that every person that you come in contact with is beautiful inside and out.. and deserves every opportunity to succeed and be important.  

I didn't get pictures of this wonderful evening because I was too busy clapping and cheering for these models as they strutted their stuff down the runway.  I also walked away with such a happy heart.

I love being able to support local events, communities and organizations.  I currently have a fundraiser open for The Notre Dame School (where part of the proceeds go to the Notre Dame School)   If you are interested in placing an order this party closes on December 22nd, 2015.

Are you thinking out and being light to those around you?

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

The Beginning

Let me tell you.. my #noexcusesNovember has been SO good for my head!
I mean it started out a Build-A-Bear with the BEST troop ever!

First outing as a Girl Scout troop. Yes.. my bear has 9 hearts...representing each girl in my troop. The name.. Warm Lace.. which is the first letter of each of the girls name. Blessed doesn't even begin to describe my love for this troop and their families! 

Each month I have been setting myself professional goals.. and I still have LOTS of ways to grow, but one of my goals this month was to open my Makerspace.  I have been watching the Twitter feed about all of these amazing Makerspaces.. and I have been reading all of these amazing blogs about their Makerspace.. and I look at mine it is SO different.

I wanted my Makerspace to be book based (by the way.. I am almost done applying for my next masters.. LIBRARIAN!) The big first idea I had was to get every classroom and grade level through the makerspace each six weeks. I was also going to divide kids so it was smaller groups. Then reality set in.. and I realized that those are super lofty goals.  So, I started with 1st Grade... but still book based.  With Thanksgiving and other holidays coming up, I wanted to start with a book that was going to be more about being good community members and see where it went from there.

So, we started with the book Boxes for Katje by Candace Fleming.  This is a FANTASTIC book!
Things we talked about:
-Looking and comparing on maps where the two main characters were from
-What might be in the boxes?
-What does Katje do?
-How did Rosie help Katje?
and so much more.

We then had the discussion on how Rosie helped Katje's community by providing things that they might not have (they were amazed that they didn't have meat or sugar.. or chocolate!)  We then talked about how we could help our community.
Our discussion went to
-Does everyone have money to buy food, and talked about canned food drives
-Not everyone gets presents
-How we can help the environment
-Donating clothes to those that don't have money to buy more

The first graders were so involved in how they might be able to make the community better.  With the season I believe they were more passionate about not everyone having toys for birthdays or other holidays.  So.. our first graders will be having a Toy Drive.

I introduced them to the fact that this is an awesome idea.. but they are going to be makers (and I wasn't going to help them.. they were going to figure it out themselves.. which they all got SUPER excited about!) so how are we going to tell our community about the Toy Drive, what do we need to do next?
Things they brainstormed about:
-phone calls home
-notes in our Thursday folders
-making decorated boxes for people to put their toys in
-making announcements
-making posters
Who knows.. I could totally have some students come in and say you know what.. I want to make my own toy or something even bigger and better.

I made this quick little video (I only see these kiddos for 30 minutes this week and next week) for teachers to show their students.  The next time they come in.. they are going to be MAKING!

When they come back.. I can't wait to see what they come up with.  So, I know that it is not like the regular makerspaces.. but who knows what is going to come out of this to help our community.  Even better a group of first graders read a book, made a connection and now want to make a difference. I will be posting the good, the bad, and the ugly (and preparing for my next grade level too!)