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July 10, 2013

Me?? I've Won an Award?! Really?

Almost a year ago is when my life as a teacher changed.  I was feeling discouraged and was ready to give it all up.  Searching for something more to "just being a substitute teacher", an online friend suggested I join Teachers Pay Teachers.  (Thanks Tammy!)  In early September of last year, I took the plunge and put my resources out there, for the whole wide world to see (and judge, perhaps).  I never thought that other teachers, my peers, would be interested in what I created.  

By January, I noticed an interest and became more motivated.  That's when I started my blog. I knew that I'd love blogging (I used to have a personal family blog when we lived in Alberta, for all our friends and family out of province), but again, I never thought that other teachers, and others in the education field, would be interested in what I had to say. I've even been approached by Pearsons Education Inc for permission to publish one of my illustrations (more on that later)! Again, I'm blown away at everyone's interest, feedback and support!  

This morning, I got an unexpected message from Stacey at A Ray of Kindergarten Sunshine to find out that she nominated my blog for the Liebster Award!  I am so incredibly honored!  To be recognized for what I do is pretty great, but to be recognized by my peers is just plain AMAZING!

So, what is the Liebster Award, you ask?  "Liebster" is a German word that means dearest, lovely, beloved and welcome.  What a great word!  To accept the nomination, I must:

  1. Link back to the blog that nominated me.
  2. Nominate 5-11 blogs with fewer than 200 followers.
  3. Answer the questions posted for you by your nominator.
  4. Share 11 random facts about yourself.
  5. Create 11 questions for your nominees.
  6. Contact your nominees and let them know you nominated them.
Here are the questions that Stacey posted for me to answer:

1.  How long have you been teaching?

I've been teaching for almost 6 years now.  I'm currently a substitute teacher, waiting for a position.  There are way too many of us and not enough teaching positions in Ontario, but I kind of knew that when I decided to teach.  My turn should come soon....I hope!  I just applied for 3 positions and am waiting to hear if I get an interview.  Fingers crossed!

2.  Did you always want to be a teacher?  If not, what did you want to do?

From my very first day in Kindergarten, at 5 years old, I knew that I wanted to be a teacher.  I remember having that light bulb moment.  Growing up, my favourite game was playing school.  We even had real school desks and blackboards to play with in our basement!

3.  What is your favourite thing about teaching?

The feeling that I am making a difference in someone's life.  I love knowing that some students will tell me things about themselves that they can't tell anyone.  They put their whole trust in me.  It's a huge responsibility, but it makes me feel complete.

4.  How long have you been blogging for?

I started my blog in January of this year.  

5.  If you could travel anywhere in the world, no expense spared, where would you go?
I'm very much a home body and we don't travel very much.  In fact, I've never been out of Canada.  My first goal is to travel and see my own country.  Then, I'd love to go to DisneyLand...I've promised my daughter that we'd go "someday" since she was 2 years old.  It's time to make good on that promise...

6.  Do you have a favourite techie tool or any techie advice?  If yes, what is it?

My iPhone!!! Seriously!!! What did I ever do without it?!

7.  What is your favourite dessert?

Cheesecake!!! With chocolate syrup!!  My mouth waters just thinking about it!

8.  What is your favourite movie of all time?

I love a lot of movies and can watch them repeatedly, but the one that I seem to watch more than others is How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days. I love Matthew McConaughey in almost all of his movies, but the chemistry between him and Kate Hudson is just awesome in that movie.

9.  What is your favourite holiday?

Christmas is my favourite holiday, but I don't go overboard and start listening to Christmas music in November (like a lot of people I know).  In my book, December is for Christmas, that's it.

10.  Are you a dog person or a cat person?

I grew up with cats as pets and always thought I was a cat person.  We now have two Chesapeake Bay Retrievers (and a cat) and I can't imagine our lives without them.  I'd say I'm a bit of both.  

11.  What was your favourite toy or doll from childhood?

When I was 6 years old, I loved the Care Bears and I begged my parents every day to get me the pink one for Christmas.  They saved it for the last present on Christmas morning and I remember sobbing because I was so happy.  I kept it, along with my baby doll that I got when I was 2 years old, and passed them on to my daughter.  She has taken great care of them and recently, when we were cleaning out her toys to see what we could donate, she said that she was keeping those two to pass on to her kids someday. 

11 Random Facts About me:
  1. If I wasn't a teacher, I'd be a rockstar.  Seriously.  I'm a great singer...In my car, in the shower..(insert sarcasm here). I am fascinated with the rockstar life and love reading their autobiographies.  I live vicariously through their stories because I'm just way too reserved and self-conscious to ever sing or dance in public.
  2. I'm an artist.  There, I said it (out loud). I hate "bragging" about myself and calling anyone an "artist" seems like such a big deal to me! I love to draw and paint and I'm very creative.  I excelled in art in high school and left my hometown at 17 to study Graphic Design in college.  It was a difficult time in my life (my mother passed away around that time) and I wasn't able to complete the program.  
  3. I had my daughter at 21 years old.  It's because I wanted to give her a better life that I went back to school to get my Bachelor's Degree.  It took me a while, but I got there.
  4. I am addicted to sugar.  I eat waaaaaaayyyyy too much candy and chocolate.  I love dessert.  I go out of my way to get it too.  
  5. My husband and I met at a bar.  We were both highly intoxicated, but hit it off right away.  It's been almost 10 years now.  We got married in 2006 and had a son that same year.
  6. My first language is French.  (Ok...maybe this one isn't so random...you probably know this if you read my blog).  I didn't speak a word of English until I was about 8 years old, and even then, it was only the very basic "yes", "no", "thank you".  I watched French television shows as a child and read French books.  I'm extremely proud of my francophone heritage!
  7. I always said that I would never marry someone who didn't speak French.  I know...kind of narrow minded...but my culture, heritage and language were that important to me.  When I met Colin, my priorities changed.  He doesn't speak it, but since I speak French to my kids ALL the time, he now understands about 90% of it.
  8. I love planning for school and writing report cards.  Yep!  I'm one of those teachers!
  9. When I see my students accomplish something great, I get choked up and tear up.  Christmas concerts are always a sob fest for me.
  10. My kids spend way too much time on iPods and iPhones.
  11. I am very reserved (Colin says I'm anti-social) and don't know my neighbours.  I keep to myself, and I like it that way.  It doesn't mean that I wouldn't help out a neighbour in need, but I don't go out of my way to introduce myself when they first move in. I speak to them if we cross paths, and wave when I see them, but that's the extent of it. I've had way too many bad experiences with really bad neighbours and don't like it when people know too much of my personal business.
These are the 11 questions for my nominees:
  1. How long have you been teaching?
  2. Why do you teach?
  3. If you weren't a teacher, what would you be?
  4. What are your favourite hobbies?
  5. What's the last book you read?
  6. What was your favourite book as a child?
  7. Who is your favourite band, singer and why?
  8. Do you believe in soul mates?
  9. Do you believe in love at first sight?
  10. Who (or what) inspires you?
  11. Who was your favourite teacher when you were in school and why?
And, finally, here are the blogs that I nominate!

Learning Ahoy!
Teaching FSL
Meatballs in the Middle
Art Lesson Launchpad
Creating Art with Kids
Teaching Through Turbulence

Go check them out! Hope you love their blogs as much as I do! If you're one of the nominees, please leave a URL to your post about the Liebster Award as a comment! I'd love to read your answers to my questions!! :)


  1. Wow you are fast! I loved reading about you and "getting to know you" through your post. Whenever you do make the trek to Disneyland you will have to let me know! I live only a mile away! And if you don't have Cheesecake Factory there...well, you'll have to squeeze that in on your trip. As a cheesecake lover you would be kicking yourself not to go there!

    1. Cheesecake Factory?!?! OMG!!! I'll have to check that out for sure! ;)

  2. Good luck on the job situation! I know how stressful that is! I love that you speak French. I actually got married in France {I do realize you are Canadian and not French though} but I could have used your help when I was getting my hair and make up done for the wedding..so clearly that confirms that I don't speak a word of French {my Irish hubby does.} I am jealous because all I want is to speak another language...any language! Oh and I met my husband in a bar...or rather a "pub"... too!I. We were just in Montreal last year and that was my first time in the French speaking part of Canada...loved it so I get why you want to see your country first.
    I am the one who nominated Stacey so I had to hop over and check your blog out and I am so glad I did!

    Crayons and Whimsy

    1. I love that I speak two languages. If I had the patience, I'd learn more languages as well. My daughter speaks French, English and Spanish and I think it's amazing. :) There are French people all over Canada, not just Quebec...although not a lot of people (including Canadians) seem to know that. I'm from Northern Ontario and there's a HUGE French population where I am. People are always surprised to hear that I'm not from Quebec. :P

      Thanks for stopping by!!

  3. I finally got my post done! Whew! Thank you for nominating me. Here is the link. http://www.learningahoy.com/2013/07/liebster-award-learn-more-about-captain.html

    I also always thought I was a cat person, but I now know I am definitely a dog person.



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