Picture Post

15 Apr

As promised, here are several pictures of the classroom… I had so much fun decorating it with my mom. And of course, it is pretty in pink.

                                                                                           Desk view 🙂 

Side view of desk

 This table is a life saver. Anytime a student is absent I file their work into the folders you see on the right of the table.  After pulling their work, the students have to sign the notebook in the middle of the table so that I know who has picked up their work.  From there, the students become responsible for the missing work.  If they have questions then they simply just ask! It works wonderfully.

Advisory Bulletin Board/Books

Writing Domain

Welcome Wall! 

Classroom Utensils~glue, colored pencils, scissors, rules,  high lighters

Homework Boards!

You can’t really tell from this picture, but this bulletin board is covered in black sequins material.  On this board I post anything that is  happening in school, policies, sports schedules and of course, the lunch menu.

Hope you enjoyed the tour!

Anddd, it’s happened again…

9 Apr

It’s been a while but it’s finally happening again:

I signed up for a race.

Nothing serious this time, just a cute little 5K on Mother’s Day.  And I signed my mom up too.  I figure what better way to start off a Mother’s Day celebration than to run together!?

Meanwhile, I have been on the hunt for new running shoes.  Even prior to taking the plunge and getting back on some kind of running regime, I was in the market to replace my year-old, beat up Brooks Adrenaline.  I LOVEDDD those shoes so I was certainly in no rush to replace them because after all, I did run my first half marathon in them.  But I finally came to the realization that if I want my ankles/shins to stop being sore, it’s time to replace my old loves.

And so I did.


I had a Cinderella moment when putting these on for the first time. They are that magical.  If you don’t own a pair of Brooks, then I suggest you run sprint to your nearest sneaker store and purchase a pair.  These shoes were priced at $89.99 but I had a coupon for $20 off a $100 purchase.  I bought 6 pairs of running socks and laces (and the shoes, obviously) for a total of $82 after my coupon was applied.

My last pair of Brooks cost me $100 and they lasted 11 months, 1 half marathon and 600+ miles of distance running.  That was easily the best $100 I’ve ever spent on shoes and I am expecting nothing less than that for this pair.

I’ve since converted Corey to being a Brooks runner and I certainly hope to influence more people to make the switch. So what do you think? What kind of shoes do you like to wear for running/working out?

Exciting News!

6 Apr

I suppose leaving you in suspense for three weeks is long enough.  You know me and my blogging habits… they are as random as the spring weather. Or a box of chocolates… you just never know what you’re gonna get.

Whatever, I will just get on with it.

I got a job!

Well… kind of!? I got a long-term substitute position!  In my content area!   Through the end of the school year! Even better yet, there is a possible full-time opening for the fall!

What’s more important, and perhaps the best part, is that I have literally been a teacher-in-training since I was able to speakSeriously.  Being the oldest (and bossiest) child in the batch, I always hosted hours upon hours of “class” in my basement.  Teddy bears and brothers all lined up, I had activities planned out and homework slated for every night of the week.  At one point I even convinced my dad to attach a small chalkboard to the basement wall where I would have my brothers practice writing cursive and I would stand waving the eraser at them, telling them, “practice makes perfect, boys!”

Once my brothers got older (and bigger) I had to teach to my Barbie dolls who were not nearly as interactive, despite my overactive imagination. But I still had a blast.  I loved to teach, it was just in my blood–quite literally I suppose; both parents being teachers and all. I think I was one of the few five-year olds who counted down until the first day of school, anxiously awaiting all of the cool new things I’d be learning.  From a young age I would watch my teachers… I always knew I wanted to be the teacher one day.

So when this opportunity to be a long-term sub came along, I could hardly sleep.  From the minute I got the key to the classroom I was already brainstorming all of the things I wanted to accomplish in the final few weeks of the school year.  And of course, being the girly girl I am, I did spend quite a bit of time decorating the room too (I’ll post pictures in a separate post soon). Without the help of my mom the classroom would not have come out as awesome as it did. It is not only functional but now it is a place that I love to be and I think the students do too.  It is inviting and sets the tone for learning.

The past few weeks have been nothing short of awesome.  I feel like I am living out my life-long dream. Except instead of brothers and Barbies, I have real students.  Which by the way, the students are great.  I love Junior High students.  They are goofy, they are free-spirited and they are honest.  What a wonderful combination. I’ve said it before and I will say it again–Junior High kids are the perfect in-between.  They have the ability to have complex thoughts and understand difficult material but they are still just silly, fun-loving kids. I absolutely could not be having a better time.

I do realize what an opportunity this is too. Because this long-term substitute position is just that– an opportunity. I think that is why most days I have to pinch myself upon walking into the classroom.  In an economy full of lay offs, I have been blessed with a chance to be a part of something bigger and better than myself–a child’s education. I get to go into a job everyday that I love and believe in, whole heartedly,  And that? That rocks.

Paired with just flat-out loving what I am doing, I have also been welcomed with open arms by the other teachers and staff members.  Everyone has been more than willing to answer any and all of my questions such as, “Why did the copy machine just shut off? Uh oh… um, is this thing broken?” or “What do we do for a Tornado Drill?” Thank goodness for helpful people.  On either side of the classroom I have teachers with years of experience  who always know what to do.  Life is so much better when there are supportive people around you, ya know!?

I literally couldn’t complain if I tried.  I am (albeit temporarily)a part of a great school district, surrounded by a supportive and helpful staff, and I get to interact with good kids daily.  Talk about exciting news!

A Word From Your Long Lost Blogger

16 Mar

I always hate when weeks go by and I don’t get at least one post up.

I also always get annoyed when people tell you how busy they are, so I will shy away from elaborating on the obvious I’m so busy blubber and just say this:

I’ve been busy. Working two jobs–subbing and mall job. Helping coach my alma mater’s softball team. Trying not to gain weight/workout/stay on SparkPeople. Stay up-to-date on all of my TV shows. Attempting to have some sort of life~but essentially failing to manage that. Blah. Blah. Blah (eye roll). Therefore, HotPinkNailPolish has been neglected. :/

Regardless. I am here now.  And I would like to say that despite putting HPNP on the back burner, I love everything about being busy again.  It feels good.

  • Substitute Teacher

I started subbing at the end of February at the same high school where my mother is a teacher. It has been an absolute blast.  First of all, it is kind of fun because the kids are all thrown for a loop when I’ve been introducing myself.  The introduction convo usually goes something like this:

Me:  Hi, my name is Miss C.  As you can see, I am not your regular teach–

((three hands are raised))

Me: Yes?

Student:  Are you Mrs. C’s daughter? You know she works here? You look exactly the same. Only a little different.

Me:  Yes and yes (smiling, laughing to myself and thinkin… oh, to be in Junior High)

I don’t know what it is exactly, but there is just something about being at school that I love.  I think a lot of it comes from knowing that I get to be a part of something bigger than myself.  Even through just being a sub I know that I’m a small part of a large team of adults who are helping young, naive, impressionable students grow to become strong, knowledgable, productive adults.  And that? That is awesome.

Another one of my favorite things about substituting is just being in all of the different classrooms.  For those of you who do not have a background in education, a large part of being a successful teacher is building a routine, a rapport, and having systems as well as expectations for each of your students. So being a sub gives me an opportunity to see a slice of the routines, systems and expectations that the absent teacher has in place. There are so many interesting things going on in classrooms anymore.  And by being a sub I get to see a glimpse of all the creativity veteran teachers are utilizing which in turn is helping me continue to develop as an educator too.

  •  Softball

As many of you know, I love love love softball.  And usually around this time of year I’ve been bitten by the softball bug.  I’ve retired from my NCAA gig and honestly, I don’t think my arm could endure many more innings anyway.  So now, in an effort to get my softball fix, I (help) coach. I’ve been working a lot more at my mall job lately (I’m in dire need of a new car–more on that another time) so I have not been able to be at as many practices as I’d like but when I do get to be a part of practice it is always awesome.  Looks like we are going to have a pretty good team and I’m so excited to see what this season brings.

  • SparkPeople

As much as I’d like to tell you I’ve lost more weight since we’ve last convened on the blogosphere, I haven’t.  I have been stuck at the same weight since my last post.  Such is life.  I’ve been plugging along, entering my calories and exercising but I have to admit I am not as hardcore with my measuring and I think that is exactly why I have been stuck.  My goal is to kick it up a notch and get serious about measuring. Let’s hope that kicks my body back into weight loss mode and I can shed a few more lbs.

  • Staying Up-To-Date

I am obsessed with ABC Family’s Pretty Little Liars. Like, crazy, do-not-talk-to-me-between-8PM-and-9PM OBSESSED. I will admit that the average viewing age is probably 15 years old, but I don’t care.  The show is based upon a series of novels which I read a few summers ago while lounging in a hammock.  Once I heard that ABC Family signed the show onto their network two summers ago, I was thrilled.  The show airs on Monday’s at 8PM and it makes even the most annoying Monday worthwhile.  My mom is also in love with this show, so it gives us some girl time together too which makes it that much better.

Side bar: To my fellow PLL watchers, any guesses on who A is??? Can’t wait for Monday to find out!

  • Having a Life

As far as a social life is concerned… ehm, not so much. Corey and I went out to eat and said approximately 3 words the whole time because we were both half asleep/cranky/irritable/in-real-world-shock. So we got our bill and came home to lay on the couch.

Anddddd you’re officially caught up on all things Danielle.

Hopefully I’ll have another post up soon… I do have some exciting news to share… until next time 😉

Important Announcement

21 Feb

I have an announcement!

Three years from this May Corey will officially be a doctor!!! He was accepted into Youngstown State’s Graduate Program for Physical Therapy!

Naturally, we needed to celebrate this exciting news with food because that is how we operate.  So I bought a cookie cake.  Sadly, the bakery at Giant Eagle was not open when I went therefore I was left to my own devices to decorate the cake…

 Cake decorating is clearly a specialty of mine.

Corey and I spent the evening talking about future plans over one beautifully decorated giant cookie.  It seems as though things are coming together.

Congratulations, Corey!!! I am so proud of you!

A Mid-Week Shopping Excursion

15 Feb

I went shopping today.

And because I feel so wonderfully about the items I purchased, I’ve decided they need to be posted on the blog world for all to see.  But before you look through my purchases, you should know how cheap I am. I don’t think I’ve ever purchased something full price, as far as clothing is concerned.  I am on every email list, coupon site and I love to shop the sale rack.  In fact, I think of shopping the deals as somewhat of a game and that is probably why I have two dressers and a closet full of clothes.

Anyway, here are my purchases. Feel free to oh and ah over them 😉

Found this dress on sale. It easily converts from daytime/school-appropriate wear to out and about 20-something wear. In case you missed it, I like to complain about the difficulty of buying clothing that is both teacherish and young.  This dress achieves both professional and young AND can be dressed up with heals and jewelry or dressed down with gladiator sandals or wedges. Perfect fit.

Speaking of jewelry…

I am in love with fun jewelry. And I am even more in love with the fact that I got both of these rings for a total of $10 which saved me a total of $4. Plus, I can sport these with jeans, dress pants, dresses or skirts provided the outfit and the ring make sense together. Success.

What I am really dying to tell the internet about is this bomber jacket I found…

I will admit that the $14 off the original price was attractive.  And I have been dying to find a faux-leather jacket that isn’t shiny enough for me to check my makeup in.  BUT I am also a fan of ABC Family’s Pretty Little Liars and when Aria wears her (probably-not-faux) leather jacket, I always feel a twinge of jealousy.  So long, jealousy!

Andddd my final mid-week shopping excursion purchase was spawned from being the recipient of a gift card.  I’ve been a fan of boat shoes for a while but I’ve never taken the plunge to purchase a “real” pair simply because I am cheap.  So when I found these lil’ loves on sale I knew I had to have them.

They had several color options.  I decided to roll with the metallic ones because the metallic made them look more fun than the plain brown ones. Plus the hot pink shoes would have been difficult to get a lot of use out of.  These look excellent with my khaki’s or can be worn with jeans. Added bonus: they are actually comfortable.

I saved a total of $57.95 from shopping the sales.  And if you include my $30 gift card, then I saved $87.95 today.

Nothing like a lil’ post birthday shopping spree!!!

Ever So Lovely

12 Feb

On Friday I volunteered to work the Ever So Lovely Pageant at HC High School. <details on what the Pageant is to follow…>

One of my mother’s friends had a daughter participating in the pageant and because my mom and I were backstage helping facilitate the show, we got to spend a lot of time with Natalie.  Natalie is 13 years old and has autism.  And she was hands down the highlight of my night.  She is a beautiful person inside and out, full of spunk and laughter.  There is something so refreshing about being in the presence of a young lady who is not afraid to laugh, smile and just flat-out be herself.  On stage, Natalie did an excellent job singing a beautiful rendition of Faith Hill’s Fireflies while being country clad in adorable cowgirl boots and a fab bejeweled cowgirl hat.

Anyways, her mother is a fellow blogger and after reading her post on the Ever So Lovely Pageant I did not even dare to attempt summarizing the night.  Her words are flawless and beautifully detail the show, so here is the link. Go on now, read it.

Ever So Lovely