Saturday, April 5, 2014

It's a Blog Hoppin' Give-Away! (Spring Blogger Meet-Up Style)

You probably already know about our recent Spring Teacher Blogger Meet-Up at the French Lick Resort in Indiana. {Can you say EPIC?!!}  54 passionate teachers gathering on their own time and own dime to share ideas, tips, tricks and favorite teacher "tools."   Talk about re-energizing!  Folks, it was A.MAZ.ING!   So amazing, that many of us who attended wanted to share some of the awesome things we took away from the event with YOU... PRIZES INCLUDED!  Yes-siree!  YOU are invited to "hop along" through our blogs to pick up little nuggets of inspiration and tips... and register to win a TON of incredible prizes from many, many of our devoted sponsors!  So, come on!  Join us for this...

As the coordinator of this event, I have the pleasure of starting this blog hop off!  {Be sure to hop ALL the way through... as you will DEFINITELY want to find out who/what is at the END of our little hop!}

As part of our event, attendees each brought a favorite "teacher tool" with them for a fun "gift exchange" activity!  (Shout out to Amanda Pauley from Mrs. Pauley's Kindergarten for writing the awesome "left/right" teacher-themed passing game!) After swapping gifts, each teacher had the opportunity to share his/her gift and hear from the "giver" why the given item qualified as his/her FAV.  {What was hilarious about this tool swap was how many of us gave the SAME things!}  There are definitely some "trends" in favorite teacher tools!   Keep "hopping" to see what they are!  You will want to "getchasome" of these awesome goodies!

Look-y at what I got!  

Thanks to my dear friend Amy (, who flew all the way from Texas to attend this event, I went home with this awesome set of reusable dry erase pockets and markers! Woo Hoo! Amy uses these regularly as a way to save on making copies. (She has a monthly limit on classroom copies!)

LOVE. THESE!  I already have them filled with printables, sitting ready for my kinder-kiddos' literacy centers for next week!  If you don't have these... GETCHASOME!  They can be found HERE.  (They come in different sizes too!  #Lots-O-Options)

Now, the next topic I am supposed to blog about is the "give-away" prizes I won. However, since I was the coordinator, I didn't technically "win" any prizes....
because I got to be the "giver!" 

  YES... It was my Oprah moment, my friends.   
Picture me... standing at the front of a captive audience shouting,
"Gifts for you.. and you... and you... and you!   TRUE. STORY.   

I gave away over $10,000 of awesome prizes which were donated from our incredible, incredible sponsors!  I could go on for days and days about how wonderful all of these companies are... and how much they TRULY want to support educators, but I am going to let some of our attendees brag on them in the posts you see in our hop!  Let me just say... as you hop through our posts, you will be able to enter to win many, many of these give-away prizes yourself!   Yep! Just pretend you are at our meet-up.  Grab your awesome Vera Bradley bag and fill it with Scentos, Jamberry, School Girl Style, Creative Teaching Press, Crayola, Boogie Boards, TPT and SDE gift certificates...and much, much more!  You may be "going home" with all of this and MORE! #lovemesomerafflecopter

Take a peek at just a FEW of the items we will be giving away....


Next up, THREE special discoveries that I took away from the weekend.
So here they are.... 

#1  Friends!  All I have to say is... 



Socializing..... Dinner with Besties.... Private Trolley Rides... Chatting...  Late Night Pom-Pom Making....
Midnight "Jam-i-cures"... and on and on!

---Only 91 days 'til Vegas.... 'Nuff said!---

#2  There are still wonderful, committed teachers out there... and companies too!
We all know the reality of being surrounded by less than supportive colleagues, parents and/or administrators.   Life as a teacher and the "daily grind" that comes with it can bring ya' down.  It just can.   Hours and hours (and hours!) of work at home at night and on weekends because we just don't have enough prep time.  We all know the negatives. The reality is that they are numerous and overwhelming A LOT of the time! 

There are LOTS and LOTS of positives too.   
LOTS of encouragement, LOTS of commitment, LOTS of creativity, LOTS of sacrifice, and LOTS of love!  And if you are ever feeling down... and needing a little of that "positive" in your "teaching life"... well it can be found right here.... through blogging.


And again.. I have to give a HUGE shout out to the companies who truly are dedicated to supporting teachers who care!  A GIANT thank you to....



 ...and of course the AMAZING French Lick Resort & Casino!  
A "must see" vacation destination!
{Picture 54 teachers stretched out in a huge circle on that floor beneath that dome, sharing ideas and inspiration.  Yep.  It happened!}

#3 Getcha' some fabulous apps!
Content is key... but visual appeal is the next essential when it comes to blogging and posting on social media.   During our "Teacher Tips & Tricks Session" many quality apps were shared which can be used to spice up your post-able presentations!   One of my FAVs is called "A Beautiful Mess."  It can occasionally be downloaded for free on the app store...but may require a whopping 99 cent investment.  {Best.Dollar.Ever.Spent.} Folks, this easy-peasy app will add color and personality to any of your photos!   Here are just a couple of examples...

(This pic is of the beautiful flowers that a few of the meet-up attendees sent me after the event!  Sweet, sweet Allison and Abbie!)

Do YOU want to be the grand prize 
winner of the 
Spring Teacher Blogger Meet-Up Blog Hop 
(Hundreds of $$$ of Goodies!!!)

Then keep HOPPIN'!
When you get to the end of this hop...
you will find this epic RAFFLECOPTER give-away!

Next on the hop...
Mrs. Pauley's Kindergarten

{Click on Amanda's button, above, to hop to her site!}


  1. This is wonderful!! I too am an Indiana blogger… how can I get in on the next meet up? Thanks!

    Shayla of Second Grade Sprouts

  2. Anyone who wants to join in our next meet-up can just follow me on Facebook! We always share details there! Or just follow the blog! :)

  3. Thank you so much for organizing this! I had so much fun!

  4. Thanks for hosting this amazing weekend! I needed the get-away more than I realized. Gotta love teacher friends!!!

    Teaching in Blue Jeans

  5. Holly what an amazing weekend you planned for us! It was so much fun. Can't wait to see who wins the BIG PRIZE!!!

    Mrs. Pauley’s Kindergarten

  6. Thanks for organizing the meet-up Holly!! :)

  7. You are just fabulous and I am so BLESSED to have you in mah life!! LOVE!

  8. I will say it again because it is the truth. You did an ABSOLUTELY AMAZING job at planning this event!!! I had no idea what to expect since this was my first meet-up. You exceeded my expectations!!! I am so happy to have met you and hopefully will see you again soon!
    Teaching Ever After

  9. It was like a Pom Pom sweatshop in that room. And I still think my blood pressure goes up when I hear JamBerry! This was an amazing, inspiring weekend!!! You rock!