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Archive for the ‘Inspirations’ Category

My favorite things: movies

Watching movies is something I enjoy doing to relax! Recently, I set up a special room in my home where I can watch movies using my laptop and an LCD projector. I don’t own a TV, so I just show the movies on a blank wall. Such fun!

Here are some of my favorites:

  • Something’s Gotta Give with Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton is my number one favorite movie of all time and is one of the few movies I own! The house in this movie is the star in my book!
  • Julie & Julia with Meryl Streep is another favorite. (I liked it much better than the book.) Since I love to cook, I especially enjoyed this movie. I own a red Le Creuset Dutch oven just like in the movie and its my favorite thing to cook in.
  • It’s Complicated with Meryl Streep, Steve Martin, and Alec Baldwin cracks me up. Again, the house is pretty incredible. You’re probably sensing some patterns by now.
  • Letters to Juliet with Amanda Seyfried and Vanessa Redgrave is a new favorite movie. Such a sweet love story!
  • Annie Hall with Diane Keaton. I do enjoy Woody Allen movies.
  • Recently I borrowed Bridesmaids from my neighbor. What a hoot!
  • It’s a Wonderful Life with Jimmy Stewart is a movie I’ll be watching in the next few weeks. Love it even when it’s not the Christmas season!
  • The Bishop’s Wife with Cary Grant (1947) is another wonderful old flick.
  • Casablanca with Humphrey Bogart… doesn’t get much better than this!

What are some of your favorite movies? Always looking for good ones to rent!

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Why I Write

Today is the third annual National Day on Writing. People all over the country share the reasons why they write on Twitter, Facebook, and blogs. Here is my contribution and I would love to hear from you: why do you write?
 
Why I Write
 
I was born a writer. From the time I was in kindergarten, I remember making cards, writing stories, creating poetry, and composing letters for family and friends. I write everyday and still am making cards, writing books and poems, and writing letters for those I love.
 
I write to express myself. Writing things down helps me organize my thoughts and communicate them to others. If I had a choice, I’d often prefer writing over talking. Writing brings clarity.
 
I write to remember. Many days I record my thoughts and ideas in special notebooks. I’ve been doing this for over 25 years. This written history helps me reflect over the many seasons of my life. Writing often brings order and helps me solve problems.
 
On this National Day of Writing, I hope you take time to write by yourself and with your students. Create, express yourself, remember, enjoy!

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Two favorite reading spots

Two of my blog readers sent in photos of their favorite reading spots after I shared mine in a recent post.

The first one is from Peggy from Colorado, whose husband built the flagstone patio all by himself!

The second one is from Gayle from Ohio, whose reading “cottage” is a converted three-season porch with a fireplace and bookshelves. In the picture are her Kindle, loaded with Literacy Work Stations and many other professional development books, and a copy of Spaces & Places and Math Work Stations.

Happy reading, everyone!

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Last week I shared a couple of pictures from my childhood that showed my siblings, my dad, and my children enjoying books together.  A few days later I received this great photo from Nancy Barth of a quilt that she and her family made for her mom’s birthday. It shows several generations of siblings, nieces, nephews, and grandparents, all reading together. Isn’t this just lovely?

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I am blessed. I come from a family where reading is valued. When I was a child, my brother and sister and I would pile into bed at night, and Dad would read to us or tell us stories. I remember his stories the best. He’d make them up using characters we’d create. This tradition continued on to the next generation. Bedtime stories were a big part of my children’s heritage, as well.

Some of my most treasured photos are those picturing family members reading. I’ll bet you have some, too. If you’d like, send us a picture of your family reading. Email it to d.diller@live.com.

Guess which one is Debbie? Not the one with the truck! Yep, The one with the book with my little brother, Doug, and little sister, Sandy. Don't you love the 1950's bangs???

Guess which one is Debbie? Not the one with the truck! Yep, The one with the book with my little brother, Doug, and little sister, Sandy. Don't you love the 1950's bangs???

Dad

Vintage 1980's- My dad reading in his "chair" to two of his grandchildren...My son, Jon (on left) and nephew, Jeffrey (on right)

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Where do you like to read? I have a quiet little reading nook tucked in above the staircase in my home. Take a look at it:

Deb's-reading-nook

It’s pretty cozy, right? So send me a picture of where you like to read – or where you happen to do most of your reading. Is it in your living room? Or in your car while you are waiting for your kids to get out of soccer practice? Is it at school? I’d love to see your pictures – if you happen to be reading one of my books in the photo, even better! I am going to pick the most creative photo and you will receive a signed copy of one of my books! So start snapping away! My e-mail address is d.diller@live.com

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What are some of your favorite back to school tips? We’d love to have you post them to share with others and get some chatter going.

I surveyed the girls that work at Debbie Diller & Associates to bring you a few of our favorites:

From Christe Cantu: In the K-2 classroom, I like to take quick pictures of the kids as they come in on the first day of school. That way, we’re ready to sort the names in the pocket chart in order to get the Names Station up and running as quickly as possible. Plus the pictures can go home later in the year as keepsakes of the first day.

In the first day go-home packet, I also ask parents to write a letter telling me something special about their child. I received some really touching letters and learned things about my students I might have never known. It’s wonderful to see children through the eyes of their parents!

From Gretchen Childs: One thing I did in my kindergarten class was that as soon as I received my class list, I sent a postcard to each student saying “Welcome to kindergarten and I can’t wait to meet you!”

From Pam Pierce: I used to take my kids on a scavenger hunt around the school to get them familiar with the office, library, cafeteria, nurse’s office, gym, etc… I had little clues at each location and we would solve the clue and then go to the next spot. It was fun!!

From Debbie Diller: On the first day of school, I’d write a letter to my 3rd graders introducing myself to them. I’d include things about my family and what we liked to do, as well as what kinds of books I liked to read. Then I asked students to write a letter back to me. What a quick, easy assessment this was! I got to know my kids and quickly learned quite a bit about their reading, writing, spelling, and even handwriting! I still have some of their letters. These were special keepsakes.

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