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Gobbling and Grateful--Thankful Thoughts






Greetings Friends!

As the time to gather together for Thanksgiving draws near, I wanted to share what I am most grateful for.   Friday, Nov. 13, 2016  marks by third anniversary as a blogger and "teacherpreneur," so consider this "refurbished" post an early celebration!


November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!



November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!


November and December are always reflective months for me, with two holidays and another birthday looming.  It is the time of year when I truly marvel at all of the people, experiences, privileges, and pleasures I count as blessings in my life.

As always, thank you for allowing me to share them with you.....along with a bajillion favorite pictures and quotes....and graphics that sparkle from Laine, my creative muse, over at 
A Little Peace of Africa!   This blog and my little TpT shop are truly more of a creative refuge vs. "places of business," for me, and I hope that you will continue to feel welcome and find
inspiration here when you stop in!


November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!





This will be my family's 16th Christmas without my mother, and our third without my father.  Our time together in Bonita Beach without them is still bittersweet, but we carry on the traditions they taught us, share laughter through our tears, and draw strength and comfort from each other.


November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!



November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!


It has been a year full of both growth and challenges for  my children, and I continue to swell with pride at the fine young adults they've grown up to be.  Being their biggest fan will forever be my greatest work.


November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!





The Summer of 2016 was not the most sunshine-filled one for this Tankini Girl Trio I am proud to be a member of.  But despite more rainy days in June and July than we would've liked, I spent plenty of relaxing afternoons at poolside with my friends Jayne and Susie.  Lounging, snacking, sipping adult beverages, and being silly is sometimes the best kind of "self-care."


November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!


A mutual love of all-things theater, Christmas, or Basset Hound-related, along with guilt-free Friday night dinners of chips and dip, make me very grateful for my friend Brandi.  Sarcasm and a sharp sense of humor keep our conversations brutally honest, real, and wickedly funny.  She has a strong spirit and sense of loyalty that lifts so many people up.


November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!





My Ohio-Indiana blogger buddies were the first to welcome me into their ranks and make me feel "worthy."  They continue to be my biggest advice-givers and cheerleaders. Though time and distance limit our visits to a few times a year, they are always with me in spirit and mindset--during my teaching day, my creating time, and my blogging time. My friend Em from Curious Firsties deserves a special shout out for being my roomie and co-presenter at the Mazza Summer Institute this summer. Together we celebrated the joy that picture books and their creators bring to children and shared our love of Tanny McGregor's work in our Reading Ninja workshop.  I can't wait to see her next weekend at the Fall Conference where we will get to meet illustrators David Wiesner and Dan Santat!  EEK! If you are interested in our July presentation materials, you can find them {HERE}.


November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!


My trip to 2015 Vegas trip to the TpT conference was another adventure I could never had navigated successfully or enjoyed thoroughly without the kindness and friendship of Carla and Sandy, two more of my favorite blogger buddies.  This photo captures their spirit and just makes me smile!  Be sure to visit their blogs, Comprehension Connection and Sweet Integrations for wonderful resources and ideas!


November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!


This summer I had the privilege of attending a week-long leadership conference sponsored by the Ohio Education Association that made me step out of my comfort zone and take a hard look at what I could do to help the membership in my teacher's union become more collaborative.  Spending time my friend and local president Dan Greenberg and teachers from all over the country helped me gain new knowledge and a fresh perspective on the importance of solidarity and organized effort in affecting change.


November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!



My list of people that I am most thankful for would not be complete without including one who believes in my blog and the importance of finding my voice, gives me a good swift kick in the behind when I need it, and often shares wisdom that just simply puts things into a more positive perspective. This forever friend has helped me find the "Zen" in my "Jen" throughout the last seven years and constantly reminds me of the wisdom in this quote,  and for that I will be forever grateful.


November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!






I recently read a Facebook post that stated "the best part of this teaching gig is my students."  These two notes....one hand-written by a current student and one scribed by my aide for a child who moved away last year.....are displayed above my desk for days when I need encouragement.


November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!



November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!


Those who know me best understand that these two hounds truly rescued me when my nest was empty and my divorce was new.  Brutus sadly waddled over the Rainbow Bridge over a year ago, and Rosie followed in late August of this year.  I tell people that I literally was the "Anne Sullivan to their Helen Keller."  They were both a bit blind, deaf, and slightly ornery, but were great company for the five years we had together.  I miss being their "Bassett Hound Mama" each and every day.





November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!



November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!






November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!



In the words of John Denver....

Music paints pictures and often tells stories.
All of it magic.
All of it true.
All of the stories,
 all of the pictures
all of the magic,
the music is
you......

Having shared my love of music with my children since they were young, it is very gratifying to see them embrace it and pursue it with passion.  This summer they treated me to a James Taylor concert at Wrigley Field, where we sang along to every song together!  After the show was over, the gentleman in front of us turned around and said to me, "You have raised your children musically well!"  It made me smile!   May they continue to sing and dance their way through life, and share their gifts with others.


November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!






These words, uttered by one of my favorite students last week, just sums up the powerful magic and gratification found in sharing books with children....

"Mrs. Reynolds....
I just love listening to you read.
I always have!
Since the beginning!"



November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!







Being a valued member of a community of like-minded and helpful educators who continually share quality ideas, resources, and advice is my biggest and best "take-away" from blogging.  When I started back in November 2013, my knowledge was primitive.  My circle of support was limited. My confidence was low.  Over time, I have been fortunate to contribute to four collaborative blogs and am now a member of numerous Facebook groups that are my daily "go-to" places for advice and inspiration.  And thanks to the best technology wizard and blog designer a gal could ask for, my work continues to get better and brighter!  Visit Laine's website to see more samples of her work!


November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!



Last, but certainly not least, I am thankful for YOU....my readers and TpT store followers.  The knowledge that the ideas and resources I share make you able to "work smarter not harder" lifts me up when I need it most.  Your feedback and comments are often bright lights after long school days. Your kind words re-ignite my creative fire.


To show my appreciation, I've put all of my thematic November resources on sale today through Tuesday, November 8th!  Check them out {HERE}!


November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!


Click {HERE} to check out these resources in my TpT store as well!


November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!



November is a time to let thankful thoughts remind you of all that is grateful and good both in your personal and teaching life!


I hope that your list of things that you are thankful for is as long as mine!  Gratitude gives us all a reason to persevere through even the most difficult of days.  The surprises of life and the "little things" keep us going.  An e-mail from Jodi at Teachers Pay Teachers last Thursday after a LONG day of Parent-Teacher conferences did just that.  Her message shared that this blog post I'd submitted would be featured on the TpT blog!  I about fell out of my chair in excitement! It explains my absolute favorite part of the day in Room #2.  Enjoy!





As always, continue to share your story, hold a song in your heart, and teach your children well....

Peace Out,






































Jennifer Reynolds
14 Comments
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14 comments:

  1. Jennifer- You are one of the most positive people that I know! I love reading your posts, because you always make me smile!! Thank you for a fun and meaningful linky. I am thankful to "know" you!!
    Laura

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    1. Thank YOU, my friend! I am thankful to know you as well! Stay colorful, creative, and take care of yourself and your lovely family this holiday season!

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  2. What a lovely post! I really enjoyed seeing a "Little Piece of Jennifer". I will be linking up. ;-)
    Carla

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for joining in my celebration, Carla! Know that the example you set and the help you've given me in my blogger/seller journey is so very appreciated and admired!

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  3. I saw my picture! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. May your holiday be full of all good things as well, Sandy!

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  4. I saw my picture! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Congratulations on your blog-anniversary! I agree with, Lauren! You are so positive, can I borrow some from you? :] <3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sending positive vibes and warmest wishes your way, my friend! Know that I admire your talent and creativity so much, and am so blessed to know you!

      Delete
  6. I absolutely love you! The impact that you have had on my family, the friendship that you give, and the support that you provide to me...I am so thankful! I love following your journey and enjoy the times when I get to be a little part of it.

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    Replies
    1. Time is precious and it is so crucial to dedicate it wisely, Em! Your post captures the importance of urgency of that wisdom! Thanks so much for linking up! Love you and your magical family right back!

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  7. Jennifer I haven't had time read a single blog post in many, many weeks. It's truly perfect that I decided I needed to take the time to read yours tonight. I LOVE it. Your gratitude is heart warming and I feel like a know you a little better now. Wishing you the happiest of Thanksgivings! Thanks for sharing!

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    Replies
    1. It made my heart so happy to know that my post touched yours, Kim! Keeping it real and honest is important in our work and our lives! Sending warmest wishes your way this holiday!

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  8. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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