Monday, November 24, 2014

PRODUCT SPOTLIGHT | NOVEMBER EMPTIES


It always seems that I run out of everything all at the same time and end up with a ton of empties! I thought this would be a perfect time to share some of my favorite, everyday, beauty and hair products!

1. Tresemme Extra Firm Control Hairspray--literally couldn't live without this stuff. I have tried TONS of different hairsprays from drugstore to high end and nothing compares to my tried and true Tresemme!

2. Tresemme Thermal Creations Heat Tamer--I have been using this product on my hair for years and LOVE it. When I went this week to repurchase it they were out so I picked up the strengthening formula and I have to say I think it's a new favorite : )

3. Benefit They're Real Mascara--This is my holy grail mascara. It's a little on the pricy side but it works so well that I don't mind spending the money!

4. Batiste Dry Shampoo--I typically use the formula for dark hair but that is a little harder to find so sometimes when I'm desperate I will use this instead. It works just as well and all I have to do is run a hair dryer over it for a few seconds to make the white disappear. If you're in the market for a new dry shampoo definitely check this one out--only about $8/can!

5. Neutrogena Naturals Daily Moisturizer--I have total combination skin. I have very dry skin but my t-zone gets extremely oily. Because of this I have to be extra careful with face products. This moisturizer is the best I have found for my type of skin! It is so refreshing and keeps my face moisturized all day without leaving it feeling greasy.  

Friday, November 21, 2014

Five on Friday

Tied with a bow.

Happy Friday, friends! I'm still hanging out waiting for this baby to make his grand debut : ) Today is my last day of work before Thanksgiving break and maternity leave. I will miss my kiddos a lot but having time off during the holidays and into the new year is just what this new mama is going to need. 

I haven't participated in Five on Friday in a while so I thought it would be fun to link up!

1. I pulled out all the Christmas decorations this week. With Bennett coming any day now I really wanted to get it all done. I was instantly overwhelmed and put 90% of it back up and decided we are going to have a very simple Christmas this year. Life will be crazy enough with a newborn, amiright?

2. and that made me just realize Bennett doesn't have a stocking..guess I should get on that!

3. I have started reflecting on my goals for 2014 and anticipating my goal planning for 2015 and I am so excited. Last year I went through Lara Casey's Goal Setting Series and it was the perfect way to start the new year. 

4. My girl Nicole has FINALLY opened her blog back up and I am beyond excited! She is starting out with an amazing giveaway that truly gives back and supports an amazing cause. Check out her post here to see what it's all about! 



5. I still can't believe I am about to have a baby............... : )

Hopefully the next time you hear from me I will be a MOM!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE | FOR HER

The holiday season is quickly approaching and with me having a baby any day now I have tried to get as much shopping done as early as possible! Online shopping has been my best friend lately and I have picked up some great gifts so far. I thought I'd put together a few gift guides to help with your holiday purchases. First up is a guide for the girls in your life. Whether you're looking to spend $10 or over $100 there is something here for everyone!

Diptyque candle || who wouldn't want to receive a luxurious candle?! 
Chanel Chance || one of my all time faves that most of the girls in your life will love
Anthropologie initial mug || a classic for any coffee loving girl
Ugg slippers || these would be perfect to wear around the house this winter
Rifle Paper Co. iPhone case || for the tech loving girl in your life
Hope in a Jar night || this moisturizer repairs skin over night for a beautiful, well rested appearance
Naked 2 Basics || a perfect addition to any makeup rotation

Monday, November 17, 2014

WHAT'S IN MY HOSPITAL BAG

Since labor is probably in my extreme near future I figured this weekend was a good time to (finally) get my hospital bag packed. I guess the mix of exhaustion I was experiencing this past week and the fact that we live a mile from the hospital made me feel not very urgent when it came to packing a bag! But I figured while I had the time this weekend I might as well : )

Since I am a first time mom I obviously had no idea what I needed to pack, so naturally I hit up Pinterest for the answer. I found a ton of great blog posts that were really helpful here, here, and here. I also posted our diaper bag on Instagram a while back asking for what to put in the baby's bag and got a ton of suggestions for what to pack for me too and that was extremely helpful!

Like I said, we live extremely close to the hospital so if there is anything else we need I know my parents can get it to us quickly : ) Here is what I came up with (for now..)

yoga pants | vera bradley duffel | button up pj's | fluffy socks | slippers | cotton underwear | robe | chapstick | phone charger | going home outfit 

Friday, November 14, 2014

Still I will Trust in You...


As I near the end of this pregnancy journey I can't help but being immensely joyful in this season. I can't even begin to explain the emotions I have felt over the last nine months. To say pregnancy is the hardest thing I have ever had to do is a complete understatement. To give myself fully to another has been the most challenging, yet rewarding, experience of my life. Being pregnant has taught me so much about myself and so much about God. Throughout every difficult moment I chose to trust in Jesus. My prayer became still I will trust in You...

I spent the first twenty-five weeks of pregnancy sick. I had no energy, I couldn't eat, I couldn't sleep. I had to rely on God so much in those weeks just to get me through the day. I found myself so defeated in those moments, yet His reassuring word kept pressing on my heart and I found myself constantly praying, still I will trust in You...

We made the decision after Christmas to go off birth control and we were pregnant the first week of March. Pregnancy came easy to us. We never thought it would be like that. I have feared my whole life that getting pregnant would be difficult for me. God chose to use this as a complete blessing and surprise in our lives. He has used this difficult pregnancy to teach me complete and utter dependence on Him and to trust Him in all my days.

As the days of becoming a new mommy set in and I am plagued with exhaustion, my prayer will continue to be still I will trust in You. I have seen the full goodness of the Lord over this pregnancy and I will continue to trust His plan for my life in every season, difficult or not.

p.s. a little baby update--as of Wednesday I am 2cm dilated and 75% effaced. My midwife says she doesn't anticipate me making it to my due date..so we wait : ) 

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

FROM THE CLASSROOM || MATH & READER'S WORKSHOP

One of the biggest pieces of advice I would give to new teachers is USE THE WORKSHOP MODEL!! It literally saves me so much time each week it's not even funny. Not only do my kiddos get small group and one-on-one attention from me throughout the week, but they also get the opportunity to work independently, with partners, and with small groups of students. It provides the kids with some independence and allows me to get in some small group time with everyone so I can differentiate where needed. Also, not to mention I don't have to write plans for every day. I just come up with my four centers for the week, organize the work, and the kids pick it up each day when it's time for centers. Works beautifully.

I thought I'd share some pictures and explain how I use the workshop model for Math and Reading in my classroom.

At the back of my classroom I have a giant bulletin board that stretches across the whole back wall. This is where I keep our rotation boards and materials for each station. This is probably my favorite spot in my room!


The boards are pretty self explanatory, but basically the students know their groups and look at the board to see what their group is supposed to be doing during each rotation.

Close up of each side // math workshopreader's workshop

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Here is an overview of our Math Workshop board. Above the bulletin board I have four posters that show the four multiplication properties. Next to the rotation board I keep a weekly list of what we are working on during the nine weeks. This helps me stay on task throughout the nine weeks and helps the students know what's coming up--great accountability for everyone! To the right of that is our multiplication fact tracker sheet. The kiddos take multiplication tests once every few weeks and if they get a 100 they get a sticker by that number. Below that is a list of my different Math groups. Underneath everything is what is in each station for the week. I stapled sheet protectors to the bulletin board and change out the paper every week. Our four centers are Math Facts, At your Seat, Teacher Time, and Hands on. In the green baskets on the desks I keep everything needed for centers. I also stapled our Science and Social Studies schedule for the 9 weeks on this board.


In between the two bulletin boards I keep the drawers where students turn in their work. Each drawer is labeled with a different subject. This has been a LIFE SAVER for me. I have a student who gets everything out of the drawers in the afternoon and I can easily grade everything from the day.

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Next is our Reader's Workshop and jobs bulletin board. Below the rotation board I have what is in each station for the week just like math. We have a Reader's Response center, Enjoy a Book, At your Seat, and Discuss the Text. Each week Enjoy a Book and At your Seat stay the same and the other two centers rotate depending on if were doing Science or Social Studies that week. Since I integrate Science and Social Studies into my literacy block this is a great way for students to practice their Science or Social Studies content through literacy strategies. I also have a list of our reading groups and a schedule for our Writer's Workshop. I will do another post on how I do Writer's Workshop soon : ) The blue baskets on the desks hold everything the students need for Reader's Workshop during the week. 


To the right of our Reader's workshop board is our jobs board! Each Monday during our morning meeting we change jobs. I have each student's name written on a Popsicle stick. I choose a stick, call their name, and they choose their job for the week. My kiddos this year are ROCKSTARS when it comes to their jobs. They take them very seriously ; ) I also keep our Eagle Bucks here. Students earn Eagle Bucks around the school for showing good behavior. When we get to 50 as a class they earn a surprise (lunch with the teacher, Popsicles, Free Friday, etc.)

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I hope this was helpful to my teachers friends and I can't wait to share more of my classroom soon! Let me know what kind of things you'd like to see or hear more about : )

Monday, November 10, 2014

HOSPITALITY



Over the last two weeks I have been going through the She Reads Truth Hospitality study and WOW such an amazing study! Hosting has always been a passion of mine. Any excuse to open my home to others is something that I really enjoy. I am always the first to offer to host and look forward to the weeks that small group is at our house. I just really enjoy creating a space that people want to be in. Adam and I both take a lot of pride in the way our home looks and feels and love opening our doors to others.

With that said, I think a lot of times I can get a little too caught up in making sure my home is "pinterest perfect" and fail to remember the real meaning of hospitality. This study helped open my eyes to the fact that hospitality is a lot less about the specifics and a lot more about the people. If people come into my home and think it looks pretty but they don't feel loved then what is the point? I want people to come into my home and feel free to open up my cabinets and get a cup and pour themselves a drink, I want people to plop down on my couch without fear of messing up my pillows, I want people to leave my home feeling like they left a comfortable space.

Jesus speaks of hospitality all throughout the bible. Not in the sense of how to set the perfect table or creating a great playlist, but rather how to open your home to others--especially those who are the least of these--and allowing them to see Him through our servitude.

With the holiday season approaching there will be many opportunities to practice the kind of hospitality that Jesus intended and I pray I can continually keep my heart set on Him when opening my home to others.

Saturday, November 8, 2014

SEPHORA VIB SALE || MY PICKS

The Sephora VIB 20% off sale is currently going on through Monday! I made an order online yesterday and thought I'd share my picks. This is a great time to stock up on everyday essentials as well as try out those products that have been on your radar for a while. I did both and can't wait to get my shipment!


Makeup For Ever Mat Velvet+ || This is my holy grail foundation! I have been using this consistently for the last 3-4 years and have not found anything better for my combination skin.

Benefit They're Real || This mascara is magical. Again, this is my go-to, everyday, mascara. I always look forward to Santa coming because he puts one in my stocking every year ; )

Anastasia Brow Wiz || This is a new product for me. I have been using the Benefit Instant Brow Pencil for about a month now and while I love the color, I hate having to sharpen it every.single.time. I use it. I'm hoping this pencil won't give me as much trouble!

Dior Creme De Rose Lip Balm || This is one of those products I have always wanted to try but could never bring myself to pay $20+ for lip balm. I almost forgot about it until the last minute and stuck it in my cart : )

Urban Decay Naked 2 Basics || I religiously use the Naked 2 and 3 pallets and my basic colors are pretty much gone in both so I thought it would be a good time to try out this basics pallet!

To receive the discount you must be a Sephora VIB or VIB Rouge member, then use code GIFTVIB.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

WELCOME || CLASSIC CITY CREATIVE

I could not be more excited to share this new space! Over the last few weeks I have really had a desire to shake things up and change everything about my blog. I never felt a connection with Life with the Leakeys and had honestly lost my desire to write. I knew I needed a change and needed to step out of my comfort zone a bit. I am so thankful for such a talented friend like Victoria who executed my vision beautifully!


I am so excited to introduce you to Classic City Creative! Here's a little of what you can expect in the future...

-home decor posts (house tour, decorating tips, & more)
-style + beauty posts (monthly favorites & product reviews)
-life posts (monthly goals, current bible studies, classroom happenings etc.)
-lots and lots of baby posts (monthly updates on Bennett, baby product must haves, & life as new parents!)

These are the things that make up my life and I am so excited to share them in this space. I am really looking forward to this new beginning and hope you will continue to follow along. xO

Make sure to update your blog feed to reflect our new URL (you can unfollow and re-follow to make it easier), subscribe by e-mail in the sidebar, or follow on Bloglovin by clicking here.

p.s. there's a little baby update below ; )

BENNETT || 36 WEEKS



We are officially in the home stretch, my friends! I am so excited and SO ready to meet my little man. I had a doctor's appointment this week so I thought I would do a quick update...

How far along: 36 weeks

Baby size: Bennett weighs just over 5 lbs and should be about 18 inches long.

Baby's progress: Bennett is officially head down and "engaged." I am SO happy that he moved from being transverse and that the doctor's didn't have to help him ; )

Weight gain: I literally can't even talk about it... 30 lbs and I want to die.

Stretch marks: Nope, but I've heard they can come in full force after delivery so I'll continue lathering on my lotion!

Sleep: Some nights are better than others. Now that he is so low I am having to go to the bathroom more and more in the middle of the night. 

Gender: Still a boy!

Movement: I still feel him moving a lot but I can tell he is starting to run out of run. I am feeling more jabs and punches than flipping and moving. 

Best moment this week: Finally finishing all my thank you cards!!

Looking forward to: My best friends are throwing me a shower this weekend!

Food cravings: Still chewing a lot of ice, but not really craving any foods. 

Weirdest food I ate this week: Nothing out of the ordinary. 

Anything make your queasy or sick: Nope

Labor signs: As of my appointment yesterday I am 1cm dilated, 50% effaced, and he is -2 engaged. While this seems exciting, it could also mean nothing. Basically my midwife said I could give birth next week...or next month. so there's that. I'm hoping it means Bennett will be making his arrival sooner rather than later! We will have a better idea next week when we check my progress again. 

What I miss: Doing things the normal way. Everything is hard these days. It's hard to shower, hard to walk, hard to sit, hard to eat..everything is really freaking hard. 

Symptoms: I can definitely tell a change in the way I am carrying him. He has dropped so much in the last 2 weeks and I feel like I'm walking with a bowling ball between my legs..it's lovely. I've also started having random, very mild, contractions. They aren't anything to get excited over but they are something! I've also had a ton of pressure on my pelvis bone which is not comfortable at all.

Things that suck: Waiting and not knowing when I will get to meet my son!

Things that don't suck: Knowing I will meet my son sometime in the next 4 weeks..AHH!!!! Best feeling ever : )