Walkin' in a Winter Wonderland in So. Cal!

Hello! Happy New Year ! For those of you who have been following me, let me re-introduce myself. I am "Jessica from TK and TASSELS" and I may have been a bit overambitious when I started this blog. I naively thought that I would post two to three times per week. Um...yeah...so that didn't happen. I am not going to give you a laundry list of excuses except to say that I am a teacher and then there is this thing called LIFE ...and that is all the "excuses" that my teacher friends need to have to understand right!?

But to those of you who are NEW to my blog...WELCOME! I am "Jessica from TK and TASSELS" and unless you are looking at my last blog post ( ahem..back in September) I'll just pretend that I'm actually a regular blogger . I do post regularly. I post REGULARLY when I am on any type of break from school that is. :)

Thank you to my So. Cal. Blogger Friends for jump starting the New Year with a fun blog hop and getting slacking bloggers like myself back on track with this post!

How was your Christmas? Did you feel like it snuck up ridiculously fast this year? I don't think I've ever been this "behind" on Christmas this year. Lucky for me, my family isn't that big and they are really laid back when it comes to gift giving and getting together. But, I wanted to do more than I actually got around to doing before Christmas! I mean, we didn't even have time for our traditional Disneyland trip, which we NEVER MISS! But, I feel that with each year, I'm realizing more and more that Christmas and life in general is about the PEOPLE and not about the "to do" lists or the presents or even where you go. It sounds so cliche I know, but Christmas is about the birth of Jesus and celebrating it with loved ones. And that can be done at home with your family (and friends) with no gifts at all or just simple / modest ones.That is what I teach my TK students and I really tried to live that out this holiday season. Having said that,I did get a WONDERFUL gift this Christmas...

The most exciting thing that happened this vacation was convincing my hubby to agree to fostering a sweet two year old rescue Maltese. I have never had a dog as a pet and I've been dying to have one for years, but never could have one due to living arrangements (apartments) and such before. When I found out that you could foster a dog ( where have I been?), that seemed non-committal enough to my husband so he agreed to it. But, who am I kidding, if I can't even keep my little blog going during school, how am I going to take care of a dog? Much less a dog that has abandonment issues and is extremely needy? As many of you have seen on my Instagram, my sweet Sadie cries every time I literally step foot outside of the room that she is in. We are currently crate training her so that she gets her potty routine back on track. She was potty trained when she came to us , but with the new environment and business of the holidays and people coming over, she got off track with her routine and regressed in her potty behavior. Thankfully, we are back on track with that now! The issue now is that she is super attached to her mommy ( me) and I am super attached to her! I can't believe that I'm saying this, but THE HUBBY WAS RIGHT! He knew that I wouldn't be able to "give her away" to new adoptive parents once I started bonding with her. Maybe this fostering idea wasn't so great.
I feel so bad you guys. I love her so much already! Sure, when she was crying and keeping me up at night and I was sleeping downstairs on the couch next to her crate that wasn't fun. I mean, humans should sleep in their human beds upstairs right? I don't want to spoil her and create bad habits, but she is just like a baby and is starved for attention and snuggles bless her heart! I can't say that I mind giving them to her either. I have actually LOVED snuggling her little warm body on these cold Winter days lately, but I want her to learn how to be OK when she is alone.When she cries it seriously breaks my heart. :(

Look at this face!
My mommy got me this new raincoat for our walks. Don't I look adorable?

But,when she runs around the house acting like a psycho dog when I come home because she was seriously have a panic attack while I was gone and is SO EXCITED that I came back I feel guilty! I've tried giving her natural "pet anxiety" drops, used a "Thundershirt" on her, and really tried to make her crate a happy and safe place for her to be in.
 I know she needs more companionship than I can give her once I go back to school. Sweet pup has issues but it isn't her fault. And I feel like I'm letting her down if I give her away...like I'll just be adding to her "abandonment issues." I feel like she is mine already, but I have to do the right thing and let her go to another home if that new home can provide more human companionship during the day and/or has other doggy siblings for her to play with. I know the right thing to do is to give her back, but it's killing me. I already told the foster coordinator lady once that we were going to adopt her, but then I feel guilty thinking of her being alone at home for so long during the day while we are at work. I know that she would adjust and get better with time, but I don't have the luxury of that. If possible adoptive parents are interested in her, I have to let them meet her and give her (and them) that opportunity. That's what foster pet parents agree too. What would you do?

I don't meant to make this a sad post. Thanks for "listening" you guys. I feel better just writing it all out here. I know that I can count on my blogging community to be supportive, positive, and encouraging! That is a major reason why I started blogging in the first place..because really who doesn't need to be surrounded by inspiring,positive, and kind people in their life? Everyone does! I've really started to only fill my life and spend my energy on individuals that want the best for me and uplift me as both a teacher and a person. And I hope to do the same as a friend! That is my goal and focus going into 2015!

Because you are so sweet to read my post all the way to this point...I have a Winter freebie for all of you to use when you go back to the classroom! I know the first thing that my class asks me and I ask them is, "What did you do on your vacation?" I usually make it the first writing journal prompt of the New Year. Now, you can use these cute snowman notes to give to your students! Just put their name in the blank space, add a short line about what you did on your vacation, and add your name at the end for personalized and festive notes that make your students feel special. Print them out on cardstock and leave them on your kid's desks first thing the Monday back from break. Watch for their smiles! Or have your principal come "deliver" them sometime to your class in the morning.
My kids get so excited when they get "mail" from me.

 Winter Snowman Notes Freebie!

And because everyone loves to win something....follow the directions below to win a giftcard to TARGET and/or Teachers Pay Teachers! How awesome is that?  Good luck! 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Finally, since this IS a "Winter in So.Cal" post, I have to share with you a pic of where I live in Orange County; all decked out this holiday season! Any locals recognize this view?  I am so blessed to live here!

Me and my love enjoying the season!

               Now head on over to the fabulous Palma of
"KFUNdamentals" here...


                      Cheers friends! May 2015 be your most fulfilled year yet! I wish you all the best!
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  1. Big hugs to you Jess. I can definitely relate. We rescued a cat once and she was so skittish. She would only let me hold her and hid the rest of the time. She peed everywhere and was just a nervous wreck. We tried everything the vet told us to do, but it just wasn't working. Do what's best for you and don't feel guilty. Sometimes it's not always a good fit, and that's ok!

  2. Happy New Year! I have always wanted to foster a pet, I love your candid rendition of it! We didn't make it to DLand this Christmas either… I have a feeling that we will be playing hooky sometime in the near future though!

    Fancy Free in Fourth

  3. More power to you! What a sweet pup, but sometimes they have more complex needs than we'll ever understand!

  4. Happy New Year! Thank you for sharing your story with us and your adorable freebie. -Jaime

  5. Happy New Year, Jessica! That is so precious that you are fostering that little Sadie! Thank you for the cute and useful freebie!

  6. LoVe that cute Sadie!
    Palma (KFUNdamentals)

  7. I just got a puppy for Christmas. I am totally worried about what will happen when I go back to work. Luckily, I work about 8 minutes from where I live so I can come home during lunch and check on her. Best of luck with deciding. I hope you are having a happy new year. Enjoy the time you do have with Sadie. ~Laura

  8. Aww Jessica, my heart breaks for you with the puppy situation! I have a Havanese, which is a cousin breed of the Maltese. We got him as a puppy and crate trained him. We do feel bad leaving him alone during the day. But he doesn't have panic attacks. I can't even imagine!
    I'm sure the foster coordinator would understand that you want what is best for the dog!
    Best to you in 2015!
    A Teachable Teacher

  9. Thank you for being such a great doggy mommy. I have three that are the loves of my life and cannot imagine what a difficult decision you must make. Best of luck to you.

    2 Smart Wenches

  10. Oh Jessica! That doggy is to-die-for adorable! Keep her! I have two dogs, and they're alone all day until I come home. I feel guilt for leaving them, but then again, I know when I'm gone they sleep all day long, so there's really nothing to feel bad about. They're excited when I get home and it's all snuggle buggles for the rest of the night. Dog are the greatest thing God ever invented--don't deny yourself that love, or deny that cute little dog of your love. Sounds like you're both already bonded...
    Teaching Powered by Caffeine

  11. Cutest dog EVER! Sorry you had to give him up. Glad you could join us in the hop. I only get around to blogging once a month as it's a more reasonable goal for me, then twice a month like I wanted to. In November I had an internet mishap so my blog post I worked so hard on never posted. At least I have the draft for next year Lol. TeacherMsH

  12. Your puppy is seriously too cute! I love the rain coat. I could not do fostering I know, I would be too attached. My doggies sleep all day when I am gone, literally, and they are so excited when we get home. Good luck with what ever you decide. Blessings to you for 2015!

    Luv My Kinders