Tuesday, December 29, 2015

The One With Another Fab Year and an NCTE Recap! #sol15

Every Tuesday, I participate in the Slice of Life challenge at Two Writing Teachers. If you want to participate, you can link up at their Slice of Life Story Post on Tuesdays or you can just head on over there to check out other people's stories. For more information on what a Slice of Life post is about, you can go here

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I'm so woefully behind in everything on this blog but I like the better-late-than-never philosophy and best-laid-plans and all that so I'm going to write my NCTE recap post with my 2015 end-of-year post. 

I can't believe 2015 is over! I looked back through all my pictures and posts from 2015 and it was definitely a fun-filled year. I went to a blizzardy ALA in January/February, we went to Disney World, we did our summer park challenge, I went to and presented at Nerdcamp MI, I left the district I had worked in for my entire career (13 years) and I started at a new district (closer to home AND where my own kids go to school), I went on an rejuvenating yoga retreat, I finished the first draft of another YA novel, and I went to and presented at NCTE in Minnesota. It was an awesome year! Here's more about the awesomeness of NCTE.

I was so excited to present with a colleague from my previous district. Deb is an amazing science teacher, she was even teacher of the year in Illinois. Love it! So I picked Deb up on Thursday morning and we drove up to Minneapolis. Those six hours flew by as we caught up and talked about teaching and teaching and teaching. I'm always learning from Deb and amazed by her passion for teaching.

We went straight to Wild Rumpus. I visited last year when we took a trip to Minnesota and I fell in love. It's an adorable independent bookstore with so much charm you just want to bottle it up and stick it in your purse and sneak little peaks at it all day long.
Me and Deb in front of Wild Rumpus
Thursday night we found a cute little co-op for dinner. They had awesome vegan options but the conversation made my night. It was great to catch up with Alyson and Ruth. 
Deb, Aly, me, Ruth
Last year, Brian was off getting married and I so missed him at NCTE. It was good to have him back! Shout out to my Maquizga! (Go Teachers Write!)
Brian and me
 Of course, I always have to get a pick with my almost-neighbor Gary Anderson. Somehow we see more of each other at conferences miles and miles away than we do when we live only a few towns away the rest of the year.
Gary and me
Friday morning, I presented with this great group of ladies! It was an honor to share the stage with them and to hear each of them speak about how passion fuels their work. I could have listened to them all talk all day. Our presentation was called Passion Driven Research.
Laura Purdie Salas, LeUyen Pham, Kate Messner, Me, Laurel Snyder, Deb Perryman
I caught up with a few other amazing Nerdy Book Club friends! Love seeing these great people in real life and sharing memories with them. It's truly like family. 
Suzanne, me, Melissa
Jilian and me
Me and Teresa
Cynthia and me
Franki and me
Colby and me (I'm still #teamrabbit, btw.)
Me, Brian, John, Laura, Melissa, Suzanne, Lynda
I was able to meet and/or catch up with some of my favorite authors and illustrators too!
Me and Sonia Manzano

Me and Alex London
Jenni Holm and Me
Lynda Mullaly Hunt and Me
And the highlight of my entire NCTE was getting to spend time with this lovely lady. I've known Danielle since before I even started Teach Mentor Texts. She has always been so supportive of me then and now. We met IRL when ALA was in Chicago earlier this year and then I got to see her again at NCTE. It was like a super-mega-bonus. Hooray for NCTE!
Danielle and Me
Looking back at 2015 makes my heart feel full. It was such a great year despite being a year of change. I'm so looking forward to all the fun we'll have in 2016!

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