Top 11 of 2011

29 December 2011

My oh my - am I ever enjoying the holidays!!!  So much so, I'm barely thinking about school (although I have started to work on my next writing workshop unit - sorry, it's long so overdue).  I've also been enjoying catching up on a little blog reading ... still so thankful for the wonderful ideas shared out there.  In my blog land travels, I stumbled across this fantastic linky party - and because I love holiday parties, I'm linking up to Hadar and Kristin's 11 in 11.   Here goes ...

11.  Favourite Movie You Watched:
I can barely remember what I watched yesterday (although I'm sure it had something to do with Dora or Strawberry Shortcake), but I recently watched two great movies that I had been wanting to see - I put off watching them because I'm a good girl, and must read the books before I watch the movies (even if I end up disappointed in the end).
This week I watched Water For Elephants and The Help.  I did find I enjoyed the book Water For Elephants more than the movie, but I thoroughly enjoyed both the book and the movie for The Help.

10.  Favourite TV Series:
I have to admit it - I'm a total Gleek (much to my husband's chagrin).  LOVE it, and yes, I totally sing along.  I also love The Big Bang Theory and Raising Hope - of course, with hockey season on, my husband has taken over the TV, and I'm watching my shows from the PVR.

9.  Favourite Restaurant:
I love great Italian food, and we have a wonderful little Italian restaurant in town that I don't get to visit nearly enough.  If you asked my kids, they'd say their favourite restaurant is Boston Pizza or Wacky Wings, so that's where we usually end up going.

8.  Favourite New Thing I've Tried:
Hmmmm ... well, my new iPad, definitely ... and setting up my ereader under the ELMO for read alouds ... and blogging ... and Pinterest ... it's been a year of technology for me.  I've also really excited about the foldable math journals I started with my students this year - it's the first time we've all been really excited doing math journals.

7.  Favourite Gift I Received:
I'm going to have to say my remote car starter - it's not installed yet, but I can't wait.  I'm looking forward to getting into a toasty warm van even when it's 30 below outside (yes, I said 30 below - I'm in Northern Ontario, remember?).  I think it will soon become a favourite of my husband's too, when I don't send him out to start my van when it's 30 below outside.  ;)

6.  Favourite Thing I Pinned:
Oh my - I have over 1200 pins, and LOVE all of them.  I think one of my early favourites were the crate stools I ended up making for the classroom.  My students LOVE them, and I have the coolest portfolio storage in the whole school!  Oh wait - I also LOVED the melted crayon art ... and the rolo cookies ... and the cheddar ranch bread ... and the foldable ideas ... YIKES!  It's just too hard to choose.

5.  Favourite Blog Post:
I really enjoyed the week of pinterest-inspired crafts I did this summer.  SO.MUCH.FUN!!!  I also really like the response I get from my Math Journal Sundays and Friday Art Features.  My students really love that I showcase their work, and get so excited to see whose work I chose for the posts.  My personal favourite has to be "The Perfect Gift" and "The Perfect Gift - Part 2" - (my last two posts) - Elizabeth is still proudly carrying her book around.

4.  Favourite Accomplishment:
Well, blogging would definitely be on this list.  I didn't think I'd have the time, and I didn't think I'd have the computer expertise, but I'm managing both and have learned so much through this process.  I was also so proud to be asked to join Teaching Blog Addicts (definitely a happy dance moment for me).  I was also so very excited to completely surpass the TeachersPayTeachers goals I set for myself.  Oh - and I'm not sure if many of you remember this, but way back last spring I confessed that I had never read a Harry Potter book - your responses convinced me to give them a try, and I'm happy to announce I bought the set for my oldest daughter, we read a chapter every night, and we are now half way through the third book ... and I am hooked!  

3.  Favourite Picture:
Again - so many to choose from ... I would love to get a DSLR camera this year, so I can keep taking more pictures.  My sister took our family portraits this fall and she did a fabulous job - my absolute favourite would have to be this one:

2.  Favourite Memory:
Well, it's only from a few days ago, but I'll always remember giving Elizabeth the copy of the book I made for her - her reaction was priceless!  I also loved the family trip we took this summer and our visits to the science museums.  Our annual summer trips to Pebble Beach are also a favourite - the kids have such a blast!  (OK - this is one of my favourite pics, too).

1.  Goals for 2012:
Well, the big one is a healthier me.  I've got to lose a bit (a lot) of weight in order to keep my back healthy (I DO NOT want to go off work with another back issue this year).  My goal for my classroom is to limit my classroom "piles".  I WILL clean off my desk and reshelve all books and supplies once a week.  And my goal for my family is to continue to make and share wonderful memories - planning a trip to Disneyland once school is out this summer.  

I hope all of you have a fabulous and rewarding New Year.  Best wishes to all!


  1. Thanks, Jen ... and CONGRATULATIONS!!! Can't believe you're finding the time to comment on blogs - you're amazing!

  2. Yep, that's my favorite picture, too. It's been fun getting to know you this year! If I get extra copies of my Crayons to College poster that's supposed to be coming out in January, there's one with your name on it!!!


  3. Jen
    Your blog is one of my faves to read! I always remember you are from Canada when I see the extra letter u in some words. :) Thanks for sharing all that you do on your blog. I am hoping to share more ideas on my teaching blog in 2012. Have a Happy New Year!

  4. Those crate cushion things are so cool. I totally need to try them.

  5. Thanks so much for linking up!!
    Rolo cookies?? Seriously!? I have to look those up IMMEDIATELY!!!
    And that family picture is amazing. Oh my word. Breath taking!!
    A Teeny Tiny Teacher

  6. Hi! I absolutely love your blog and I am finally commenting!! I totally agree with loving Water for Elephants (book) but not loving the movie nearly as much! Both the movie and book of The Help were fabulous!


  7. Hello, I really enjoy reading your blog and getting wonderful ideas. I have to try the crate cushion!

  8. Hi Jen!

    I am having a few (a LOT of) technical difficulties with my "11 in '11" post. If you can find it, come and read the little bitty shout-out about you!

    It's so amazing to me that I feel like we have met (worked together even!) because I know some of these pictures and stories...

    To me, the BloggyBuddies are the best part of blogging--oh, and those ROLO COOKIES! Yummmm!

    Happy Day, Jen!

    Finding JOY in 6th Grade

  9. Your picture belongs in a travel magazine! I love your blog and wonder how I have missed it in all of my blog stalking! I am happy to be your newest follower and would love for you to come by and visit my blog!

    Heather's Heart

  10. I am sooo going to try the crate cushions! I'm so glad to have linked up with you...such great ideas!

    Fun in Room 4B

  11. You have such wonderful blogs!!! Been a follower for awhile and hope you'll visit my blog and maybe read my Kindergarten book?

  12. Opps, I forgot to say what I'm reading now: The Legends of Tsalagee by Phil Truman, a friend of my husbands and myself - very humorous adventure about Big Foot. I read Water for Elephants and The Help but haven't seen the movies. I loved the trilogy of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo but did not think the English dubbed movie did it justice. I love Peggy Webb's books about Elvis as a reincarnated hound dog - hilarous. Put challenges on your blog for everyone to read at least one book a month just for themselves. We know teachers, moms can blog - but are their kids seeing them reading books?