Sunday, August 5, 2018

Classroom Organization

Happy Sunday friends!

I hope you all had a wonderful week! What were y'all up to? I would love to hear about anything you did this past week.

My school started preplanning on Friday. I am so excited about this new school year! My mom is also in the education field. She's been teaching for about 31 years! I love helping her in her classroom. Recently, I have helped with the organization of her closet and bookshelf. I have five main tips when it comes to classroom organization to help anyone. These can apply to the classroom or to the home.



1. Take everything out of the space you are organizing. When I started organizing the closet, I took everything out so I could clean the space afterward. This might feel daunting, but it will really help you set up a functional, organized space.

2. Group similar items as you are taking everything out. This starts the organization process immediately and gives you an idea of how much space you need for certain things like Christmas supplies, math teaching tools, etc.


3. Use bins you already have. As you take things out and start grouping items, you'll find you'll create empty containers. I used any containers I could find to sort markers, pencils, colored pencils, and expos into different bins.


4. Create sections in the space that are designated for the same subjects or category of objects. I put all the math and science related items on the right side of the closest and keep coloring supplies on the left side.


5. To keep everything organized throughout the entire school year, always put an item back in its home. This is such a simple step that can change your level of organization. You could also assign this job to different students. I have seen that students really enjoy having jobs. It helps them to know they have a purpose and place in the classroom community.



I hope these tips were fun and inspiring to read through! Have a great week everyone!


With a smile,
              Abbey

Sunday, July 22, 2018

Simple Closet Organization

Happy Sunday, friends!

I hope your Sunday is going well! I have about two weeks until school starts, so I have been working on getting some things done. It is such a nice feeling to not have to worry about grad school right now. During my spare time, I organized and simplified my closet. I did several things to simplify it. {There is a little teacup of encouragement at the end of this post!} 

Here is the closet before!







I got rid of all plastic hangers from stores and wire hangers from the cleaners. I had so many plastic hangers. I was inspired by working at a boutique to get nicer hangers. I picked up some felt and plastic ones from Target. They have a great selection, and I believe they are in the $7-$10 dollar range. 


I put away all my winter clothes and shoes. I sorted through all these clothes first and decided what I truly liked and wanted to keep. I put my winter clothes into a large blue container, and I put my winter shoes in a basket. I placed both bins on the top shelf in my closet. 



I found this blue bin just in our basement and wiped it out with these Lysol wipes which smell very nice! I learned from Emily Ley to always see what kind of organization bins you might already have before you go out and buy new ones. I also have always stored my rainboots on the top shelf, and in the blue hat box are tissue paper, gift bags, etc. 




I removed a chest that was in my closet. You can see it there on the left side of the photo. The handles had fallen off, and it took up a good portion of space. I had clothes in there, but I found other areas around my room and closet to store them. This photo is after I took out all my winter clothes, but I still needed to create some more space.


I found this simple three-drawer storage tower in our basement. I was trying to save money, so I took another trip to the basement and found the storage tower. I washed it outside and lined the drawers with cute wrapping paper. 


I took another trip down to the basement and found these cute little storage bins to store various things in. I store contacts, skin care products, clothes, etc. in the little storage bins.

 



Here is the closet afterward! Overall, it really helped me to 1) go through my summer and winter clothes and decide what I enjoy wearing. 2) Think about clothes that would work for my new job as a paraprofessional. 3) Store winter clothes, scarves, and shoes in bins. 4) Frequently place clothing and other items back where they belong. Most items have a specific place that I keep them. If I put them back each time I use them, my closet will stay tidy!





I hope you enjoyed this post. What do you enjoy getting done in the summer? 

Also, a little teacup of encouragement for your day!

I heard a very encouraging message today from Pastor Neil. It was about God's love for us. He preached from 1 John 4:7-21.  One of my favorite verses from that passage is 1 John 4:18-19.


Love never brings fear, for fear is always related to punishment. But love’s perfection drives the fear of punishment far from our hearts. Whoever walks constantly afraid of punishment has not reached love’s perfection. Our love for others is our grateful response to the love God first

demonstrated to us. {The Passion Translation}

 Pastor Neil talked about meeting God like taking the biggest exam of our lives. I would most likely feel nervous, ashamed, and unprepared knowing or wondering if God will accept me into his kingdom. However, the amazing news, the news of the Gospel, is that Jesus died for you and me! Now when we stand before God presently and forevermore we wear the righteousness of Christ. We are God's beloved son or daughter in whom he is well pleased! {Matthew 3:17} It is like Jesus took the test for us and made a 100, and now the 100 is on our report card. We did not earn it. We could not deserve it, yet Jesus lived the perfect life for us and died for us so we could be cleansed of all our mistakes, guilt, and shame. The verdict is Romans 8:1, "So now the case is closed. There remains no accusing voice of condemnation against those who are joined in life-union with Jesus, the Anointed One." 
{The Passion Translation} I need to be reminded of that daily. I need to preach the Gospel to myself daily. I just love it! 


I will put a link up to the sermon as soon as they put in on the website




With a smile, 

                Abbey






Monday, July 9, 2018

Prepping For a New School Year as a Paraprofessional

Prepping For a New School Year as a Paraprofessional



Hi friends!

It has been such a long time since I have posted here. I hope you are all doing well! Blogging is always in the back of my mind, and now that it is summer time I have some more time to blog. Last year, I was a substitute teacher. It was my first year in the education field, and I enjoyed the experience. I started my Master's in Early Childhood Education in May which is a two-year program. I will be a special education paraprofessional this coming school year while I work on my Master's. I am very excited about this upcoming year, so I am doing a few things to make me feel prepared.

First, I have some reading materials.

Methods for Effective Teaching is a textbook that I was assigned in grad school. I am planning on taking some time to read over it more thoroughly. It covers some many various topics in teaching!



I found the rest of my reading materials on Teachers Pay Teachers. They are filled with training tips specifically for paraprofessionals. I inserted them all in a binder for easy reference and organization.


The Paraprofessional Training on Instructing Students is just a few pages long, but it has some great tips on the role of a paraprofessional in various teaching environments. All of these resources are designed to help the classroom teacher train their paraprofessionals. I figured I could download them myself just to be armed with more knowledge. 


The Staff Training Manual is almost 80 pages! It is full of great resources. I cannot wait to dive into it! 


The Paraprofessional Training Manual for a Special Education Classroom is about 30 pages. Again, it is filled with great strategies for paraprofessionals to implement in the classroom.

Second, I am working on making a list of back to school clothes. So far I want to purchase:
~ comfy maxi dresses
~ comfy heels
~ nice dress pants

Third, I am planning on making sure my requirements for my grad school program will be met during the school year. I need to check with my school about observing another grade level. My grad school program requires for us to have a certain number of observation hours in each grade level.

Fourth, I am creating a schedule for workouts and study time while having a full-time job. This is just a rough draft. I might change it depending on my energy levels!



I hope you are all having a memorable summer! What are you up to this summer?
Here's a little encouragement for your day from Eleanor Brownn!


With a smile,
         Abbey 



Monday, March 26, 2018

Spring Cleaning Part 1: Bathroom Organization




Hello everyone! Welcome back to Sweet Tea with Abbey! I hope this little corner of the internet makes you smile, makes you feel encouraged, and makes you feel welcomed and loved!

I am so happy to have you here today. It has been a pretty chill Monday. This weekend was really busy, so I relaxed today and got a little school work done.

Since we are right in the middle of spring, I thought it would be fun to start a spring cleaning series. The area I tackled last week was my bathroom. It stays pretty tidy, but things needed to be cleaned and reorganized. I will share with you some steps you can take to quickly organize your bathroom.

Stay tuned for more spring cleaning posts!!


First things first . . . we all love a good before picture. This was after I cleaned out my drawers and cabinets.



My drawers had gotten dirty from makeup and hair, so I vacuumed them out and wiped them out with a Clorox wipe.



Then I measured my drawers and cabinets and cut wrapping paper that would fit inside the bottom of the drawers and cabinets.


This is how it turned out! My mom did this in her bathroom drawers, and I wanted to try it too! This way you can protect your cabinets from stains, and it makes for easier cleanup. Also, pretty wrapping paper just brightens everything up. My one tip here is to make sure you use the exact measurements you measured to cut out your wrapping paper. You will want the wrapping paper to fit as closely as possible so you can cover the entire bottom of the drawer. This makes it look neat and clean. 


I used tape on the bottom to help the wrapping paper lie flat. 


Here I measured the bottom of the cabinet. Then I pressed the wrapping paper as far as I could in the back. Then I got my pen and outlined where I would need to cut inserts. My other cabinet didn't turn out as neat, but I did that side first. 


Here is the other side. You can kind of see how my measurements were off in the back. I use command hooks to hang my hair tools inside my cabinet doors. 


Here is the other side of the cabinet. Again, I use command hooks to hang my hair tools. I use an old mug to organized my hair brushes. I use a white caddy (from TJ Maxx) to organize skincare, and I use a blue caddy to organize extra products (from my basement).  


Here are my drawers after I put my products back in. The left drawer contains my makeup products and glasses. The right drawer contains hair ties, bobby pins, hair clips, and eyeshadow. I just used old snack containers to put my hair ties, bobby pins, and other hair clips in. 


In this drawer, I store my Clarisonic and other electronics. I used an old Crystal Light container with scrapbook paper on the inside to hold my contacts.  


This is the washcloth drawer. 


Finally, this is the outside! I hope you enjoyed this organizational series. I love to organize, and I enjoy sharing tips & ideas with y'all! Hope you have a blessed & beautiful week! 

Here is a bible verse that I've been loving lately: 

Psalm 34:4-6

I prayed to the Lord, and he answered me.
    He freed me from all my fears.
Those who look to him for help will be radiant with joy;
    no shadow of shame will darken their faces.
In my desperation, I prayed, and the Lord listened;
    he saved me from all my troubles.

With a smile, 

                Abbey 



Monday, March 19, 2018

Disney Princess Half-Marathon: My Experience + Tips





Disney Princess Half-Marathon: My Experience + Tips

3/19/2018

Hey friends!

I wanted to share with you today my experience with the Disney Princess Half-Marathon. It was one of the best experiences of my life, and I am so excited to share with you how we went about everything and provide you with any tips I can. This was our first half-marathon and our first Disney race. Going into the half-marathon, my mama and I both ran a 15k so that we could provide an official time to Disney {through Active.com}. By giving Disney a time, we were placed in corrals D and E {although we started together in D}.  With that said here's the first tip . . .



1. Participate in a qualifying race. I think the lowest distance your qualifying race could be was a 10k. We each found a 15k and submitted those race times to Disney early on. This helped so much because we started running around 5:50 am. The race started at 5:30 am, but some farther back corrals didn't start till 6:30 am. Starting earlier when it is dark makes the entire race easier because you are not in the heat as long.

2. Train but give yourself grace. I mostly run on a treadmill, and the longest distance I ever went leading up to the half-marathon was the 15k I ran as my qualifying race. The 15k was a trail run. After that, I did 5 miles once, but I mainly ran 3 to 4 miles 2 to 3 times a week. I was a little worried that I wasn't going to do well if I didn't do a lot of long distance runs, but I think as long as you're staying active you will be just fine! :)



3. Have fun and dress up! There were sometimes leading up to the race that I thought, "Ahhhh I won't get a costume. What's the point?" Well, friends, the Lord has blessed us with this life, and I am learning you gotta hug every moment with a big bear hug and let that moment bless you with a happy memory forever. So get a costume! It can be super cheap! I just got a pink Sparkle Skirt from Amazon for $26! I had some old Minnie Mouse ears, and I wore the shirt everyone gets for running the race. There will also be tons of cute stuff at the expo Friday evening so you could wait until then! I bought this pink running pouch from the expo, and it was very nice to run with. I packed Advil, band-aids, my cell phone, etc. in it.

4. Make a plan. This race was unlike any other. I recommend reading everything you can on their website like the official digital event guide. From reading the event guide, I learned:
~ we needed to be at Epcot at 4am
~ Parking is free till 7 am
~ Entrance to the Magic Kingdom starts closing at 5:30 am
~ Roads start closing at 11 pm the night before
~ Where exactly to go: follow the directions they give you to Epcot. Your phone will take you the most common way, but I believe those main roads are closed off because they are part of the course.



So this is what our plan looked like:

Friday:

~ drive down and get to Disney World around 3pm. Head to the Expo at the ESPN Wide World of Sports. We probably spent an hour here picking up our bibs and looking around at everything. {Random tip: go ahead and print and sign your waivers so that you won't have to do it there.}
~ eat dinner and call it a night



Saturday:

~ day in the Magic Kingdom!
~ head back fairly early to rest up for the race on Sunday
~ lay out everything the night before {outfit, race bag, breakfast (Luna bar), bib}



Sunday:

~ wake up at . . . . wait for it . . . 3:20 am and leave by 3:50 am. Do light makeup.
~ we had about a 20 min drive {normally 30 minutes, but the only traffic we encountered was once we got into Disney}. We got there around 4:10 am and we had plenty of time to wait in the longest lines ever for the porta-potties. {They had like over 200 porta-potties. It was insane!}
~ around 4:40 am we started walking to our corrals. It was a pretty long walk, so plan enough time for that.
~ we waited in our corral for awhile, but it was really fun! We got to see everyone's costume. Talk to some people. Watch the live talk show.
~ 5:50 am and corral D finally started running!! Get ready for LOTS of fireworks!





Note: My boyfriend came along with us. We did not buy the Cheer Squad package, and he was totally fine! The Cheer Squad package is a service for your spectators, but you really don't need it. Your spectators will be able to ride the monorail for free so they can try to find you at different mile markers. Sign up your friends and family for the tracking system through text messaging, and it will alert them when you hit the 5k, 10k, 15k, 20k mark and finally when you're done! He also went into the Polynesian and bought some food. He enjoyed just traveling through Disney World!

5. Final tip: Around mile 10 my knees started to ache. I haven't experienced this running before. I would recommend trying running compression socks and either wearing Asics or Brooks. I haven't tried running compression socks, but I think they would have helped my knees.

That was a lot of info! I hope you really enjoyed this!! Let me know in the comments if you have ANY questions or you can email me at sweetteawithabbey@gmail.com!

Have a magical week!