Mad Lib Illustrations

I had a substitute a week or so ago, and while I was gone I had my students do mad lib illustrations.  I got the idea from Organized Chaos.  So my fifth graders would randomly pull from three different cups–one for subjects, one for actions, and one for places.  Then they would make a sentence out of the 3 words/phrases and illustrate it.  When I got back the following Monday, I laughed out loud at what I had waiting for me.  The kids said they enjoyed it too.  The word cups are now apart of my “free draw” station where kids can go if they finish early. Here are some of my faves.

An octopus baking a cake in the North Pole.

An octopus baking a cake in the North Pole. (This kid is a fantastic artist)

Santa Claus playing checkers in the forest.

Santa Claus playing checkers in the forest.

Penguins sneezing in outer space.

Penguins sneezing in outer space.

A shark eating spaghetti at Six Flags.

A shark eating spaghetti at Six Flags.

Mrs. Maxwell eating at Chili's.

Mrs. Maxwell eating at Chili’s.

I have a nice, artsy dress on, no?

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Thanksgiving festivities were fun and full!

Playing games at Ryan's Grandma's

Playing games at Ryan’s Grandma’s

Fajita dinner at my folks'

Fajita dinner at my folks’–with Will & Bailey and their sweet daughter.

Passing around Princess Nell

Passing around Princess Nell

So many wonderful things and people and food. We are so very blessed.

And we are about to head out and get a Christmas tree!

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Every day’s a good day when you paint.

This past week I started painting with Kinder-3rd, which of course is always very exciting for them.

A very blurry picture of some 1st graders painting

A very blurry picture of some 1st graders painting


When we paint, we like to watch this Bob Ross remix which the kids absolutely love. We watch it as least twice every class. I think I’ve shared it on here before.

One first grader said, “This song really helps me focus!.” And a second grader,”This is a thing of joy!.” Another second grader, “Why does he keep saying ‘Ibalee’?.” (as in “I believe”).

In closing, happy birthday to my wonderful Daddy!

Taken when I was 17, at the Spanish Steps in Rome.

Scotland Rundown

Back at Heathrow airport, waiting for a plane that will take us back to Dallas. It was such a good trip, we had a great time, but it will also be nice to be home. It’s good to have balances in life like that–it’s nice to leave and nice to get back.

Another good balance we had in our trip was the city to countryside ratio. Our first couple nights were spent in Glasgow. We had a fun time being shown around by Will and Bailey.

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Then Ryan and I took a train to the beautiful and enchanting Isle of Skye and explored around there a couple of days.

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Then back to Glasgow for one more night with Will and Bailey, plus some amazing Indian food.

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That above picture is on the Subway. Ryan is hidden behind his massive backpack.

It was a really fun trip and a great visit with Will and Bailey. Soon I’ll put up tons more pictures in a Facebook album, so get excited.

Pretty soon it’s back to the real world… But that world is good as well.

Art is Smart

I feel like all I really talk about on here recently is art, but that’s my life currently. And art is pretty cool so that’s ok.

Ryan and I are amateur art collectors, and we have some recent acquistions. The first is this lovely giclee art print by artist Joe Sorren (one of Ryan’s favorite artists, mentioned also in this post). It is the first print of just 50 made of this artwork, so that is pretty special.

When She Was Camera

Here it is in context, on our gray wall.

Here it is in context, on our gray wall.

The other art I just hung up are original paintings done by none other than Ryan’s own brother. The top one he gave to me for Christmas, and the bottom he gave to Ryan for his birthday. Ryan and I love having original works of art–in case you are thinking of giving us a present any time soon. So here the watercolor paintings now hang in our study.

Had to include BU sock monkey and the blanket I knitted this past summer.

Had to include BU sock monkey and the blanket I knitted this past summer.


And here they are up close. These are terrible photographs from my iPhone, but at least you can get a closer look. There is such rich, surreal, interesting, and perplexing details in these paintings.
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You’ll just have to see them in person (if we know you, that is, and invite you).

And here is some more art! I was so fearful of teaching clay to my elementary students, but now it is my favorite. My second graders made some clay fish after reading …

Such a cute book!


Here are some of their pout-pout fish.
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And here are some glazed.
They have such personality!  I love them.

They have such personality! I love them.


I got the idea for the lesson from Art With Mr. E.

And then here is a self-portrait I drew last Sunday in pen.
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I usually draw in pencil, and I was pretty scared of the whole not-erasing-thing. But it was a good challenge! I need to draw more in pen.