Monday, September 29, 2014

Music Monday: Workout Playlist

It hit me this evening that I really have missed everyone here in blog land!  I've been doing my best to keep up with reading and commenting on YOUR blogs, but I've missed interacting with you here, too!  Luckily, this post came to me rather quickly.

I've been doing well with going to the gym after work.  I manage to get there at least three times a week, which is a HUGE improvement from....well....never.  (Or the one time a week that I stayed after school for an hour for Zumba, which isn't all year long.)  I'll be honest, that I'm pretty much sick of the music I have on my iPod right now (and I have approximately 800+ songs)*.  I did make a specific playlist of upbeat and/or motivating songs to listen to at the gym.

*I am so sick of my music, that when I got an offer from to get a free download of Eat, Pray, Love with a 30-day free trial of Audible, I took the chance.  I was skeptical about listening to a book, but I'm LOVING it!  I started listening on my way to work on Friday, and I was actually sad when I got to work.  That's saying a lot because I hate being in the car.  So the fact that I wanted to keep driving around really says something about this...

I have 78 songs on my Workout playlist.  I won't list them all for you because that would be boring.  I WILL, however, put my playlist on shuffle and share the first 10 songs I get...

1. "Hot Blooded" by Foreigner
2. "Teenage Dream" by Katy Perry
3. "Genie in a Bottle" by Christina Aguilera
4. "Barracuda" by Pat Benetar
5. "The Edge of Glory" by Lady Gaga
6. "Don't Stop Believing" by Journey
7. "Hey Mickey" by Toni Basil
8. "My Life Would Suck Without You" by Kelly Clarkson
9. "Good Girl" by Carrie Underwood
10. "Sweet Like Cola" by Lou Bega

As a bonus, I also have "Eye of the Tiger" by Survivor (from Rocky).  It's strange how I suddenly pick up speed on the elliptical when that comes on...haha

Do you have a workout playlist?  What songs motivates you?  Anything you're really loving that I should download!?

 Also, swap participants, don't forget to send your packages out by Friday, October 3rd!!  I got my shopping done and packages ready to go out over the weekend!!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

So sorry...

This will be brief.

I am here today to let you know that I am still alive.

Yes, yesterday's post about The 3rd Annual Great Pumpkin Swap was scheduled.....before school started.  Did you sign up yet???  What are you waiting for??

I am really struggling to get back into the swing of things with teaching, going to the gym, and life.

Then I got a cold.

Which is another reason why this is brief.  As I write this, it is about T-minus 5 minutes until I go take some NyQuil and go to bed.

I promise that once I get the hang of all of this, I will come back to tend this little blog of mine.

I hope you are all well.

Before I go, I am so sorry for...

...neglecting my little corner of the internet.

...being behind on reading YOUR blogs.  I love all of you, and I'm trying.  I swear.

...this pathetic excuse for a post. ;)

I'm NOT sorry for plugging the swap again....go sign up.  Now! :)

Monday, September 15, 2014

The 3rd Annual Great Pumpkin Swap

Oh friends, we are well on our way to fall, and that means that it's time for The 3rd Annual Great Pumpkin Swap!!

My friend, Kristin from Kristin's kNook, and I are teaming up again this year to host this super fun fall swap!  I LOVE doing swaps.  Thanks to this swap, I've met some great ladies: Casey from Everyday Adventures and Rachel from The Ross Family.  I can't wait to "meet" someone else this year!!

So here's how this will work:

1. Fill out the form to sign up for the swap!  (Sign-ups end at 11:59 PM EST on Saturday, September 20th).
2. By Monday, September 22nd, you will get an e-mail from me with your swap partner.
3. Once you know your partner, please make contact within 48 hours (by Wednesday, September 24th) to get to know a bit more about each other!
4. Spend $15-$20 (plus shipping) to put together a fun package for your partner.
5. Mail your package on or before Friday, October 3rd.
6. Link up with us on Friday, October 17th to share your swap goodies!

Easy!  And SUPER fun!!  I hope you'll join us! :)  Just fill out the form below!
(And you do need to scroll in the form to get to the submit button.)

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Book Review: The Fault in Our Stars

This is officially the last book I was able to read on my summer vacation.  :(  It's tragic.  I still have quite a long list of books I want to read, and I hope that I can do a better job of finding time to read during this school year!

Here's the synopsis from

Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel's story is about to be completely rewritten.

The Fault in Our Stars

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed reading this book. I actually finished it in a couple of days. The Fault in Our Stars brought tears to my eyes. I feel that an author has done his or her job when your emotions flow! I was able to connect with Hazel and follow her on her journey. 

I bought this book with the intention of adding it to my classroom library because I had heard students talk about it in the past. I will NOT be adding it, though, there is content that I do not find appropriate for 6th grade students, and I will leave those decisions up to their parents. 

I did find that Hazel and Augustus are perhaps too smart or wise for their years. They do seem like adult versions of teenagers, quoting difficult material, and being almost philosophic. I'm not saying it's not possible, I'm just saying it's not quite like any teenagers that I've even known! 

I would certainly recommend this book, though, and I would like to see the movie! 

Monday, September 1, 2014

Music Monday: Birthday Edition

Happy Labor Day!!

Tomorrow is my birthday!

A couple weeks ago, I shared the Top 5 hits from the year I started Kindergarten.  Today, I thought it would be fun to celebrate my birthday by sharing the Top 5 hits from the year I was born: 1982.

Ugh.  If you're doing your math, that means that I will be 32 tomorrow.

#5 "Centerfold" by J. Geils Band

#4 "Ebony and Ivory" by Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder

#3 "I Love Rock N' Roll" by Joan Jett and the Blackhearts

#2 "Eye of the Tiger" by Survivor

# "Physical" by Olivia Newton-John

Those are definitely some good songs from 1982! :)

What song was #1 the year YOU were born??

Sunday, August 31, 2014

August Review

I hope you are all enjoying your weekend, and that you get to also enjoy a day off tomorrow!  I can't believe it's the last day of August already.

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Friday, August 29, 2014

Book Review: Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?

Here is the summary from

Mindy Kaling has lived many lives: the obedient child of immigrant professionals, a timid chubster afraid of her own bike, a Ben Affleck–impersonating Off-Broadway performer and playwright, and, finally, a comedy writer and actress prone to starting fights with her friends and coworkers with the sentence “Can I just say one last thing about this, and then I swear I’ll shut up about it?” 
Perhaps you want to know what Mindy thinks makes a great best friend (someone who will fill your prescription in the middle of the night), or what makes a great guy (one who is aware of all elderly people in any room at any time and acts accordingly), or what is the perfect amount of fame (so famous you can never get convicted of murder in a court of law), or how to maintain a trim figure (you will not find that information in these pages). If so, you’ve come to the right book, mostly!
In Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?, Mindy invites readers on a tour of her life and her unscientific observations on romance, friendship, and Hollywood, with several conveniently placed stopping points for you to run errands and make phone calls. Mindy Kaling really is just a Girl Next Door—not so much literally anywhere in the continental United States, but definitely if you live in India or Sri Lanka.

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns)Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? by Mindy Kaling

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I enjoyed this book, but I can't say that I loved it. I did have a few quiet chuckling moments, and I'm glad I read it. I definitely liked Mindy's voice and humor in her writing. I'm thinking I might have given this 4 stars if I knew more about Mindy beforehand and/or watched "The Office".

View all my reviews

I will also note that I bought both this book AND Bossy Pants with the intention to read and sell.  If I had really truly loved either of them, I would probably keep them to read again.  To me, neither of these are books I will reread (though, I would listen to the Bossy Pants audio book).  This one sold on Amazon pretty quickly.  Bossy Pants is still listed if you're interested.

Have you read this book?  What did you think?  

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