Monday, June 17, 2013

is it over already?!

As the school year winds to a close it comes, again, that time where we need to brace our selves for the summer (yikes!) and thank the teachers who kept our kids out of our hair and educated the poo out of them for the last ten months.

Since I used to get "thanks for the great school year" prezzies people often ask me what it is a teacher really wants.  I always wanted Sharpies, but I have a small addiction to them which might not be wholly normal.  I have shared some of my previous teacher gifts with you before like how to mess up easy homemade hand scrub or the "thanks a latte" idea I blatantly stole-- er, um, borrowed from somewhere. *Cough, cough* Pintercrack.  We also used the glass etching stuff from Paul Bunyan's birthday project to make a jar for his teacher's last year at the end of the year, but I think I might not have posted about that ... well if I didn't just trust me, we did it and it was cute.

Anyway, as the school year winds down I find myself wanting to plan out the end of the year gifts better than I normally do.  This is two fold, one I would rather not be gasping for air while trying to figure out how to wheedle it into one week's budget because I forgot.  Two, Meatball is in 5th grade, meaning next year he moves on to middle school and will not longer be at the school we know and love and have been at since kindergarten.  While I am focusing on not sobbing about my baby growing up and me feeling wildly old, I am rather focusing on how we need to recognize more people than normal as a result.

A quick Pintercrack search yielded lots of cutesy things and this little gem: teachers love supplies as a gift.

Perhaps I was an exceptionally selfish teacher, but I would not have said that exactly.   Don't get me wrong, I wept with gratitude for every kleenex box, set of pencils and jug of hand sanitizer I was ever given.  But don't call it a "gift" for me, umkay?  It prevents me from spending my own money, as I would have had to, it is kind, it is generous, but it really isn't a gift for me.  It is a way to support me and my classroom and I am unspeakably grateful for it, but it isn't the same as a gift for me.  Make sense?

It depends entirely on what you are wanting your gift to be, no teacher will begrudge a gift that is for them versus the gift that is for their classroom.  However, since I donate supplies all year and do a big donation at the beginning of the year as a "gift" to the teacher who is setting up a classroom, I do not want to do this at the end of the year when they are busy packing their classroom up for the summer in the middle of everything else.  As the year opens it is an awesome idea to give your child's teacher a bunch of supplies they may need.  Awesome.  Giving it to them as summer is this --> <-- close?  Not as cool, in my opinion.  Teachers are just as eager, if not a billion times more so, for summer as their students.  They deserve a special, spoil-themselves type thank you that they can do whatever they want with, not 30 pencils to sharpen in anticipation of next school year.

I also don't want to laden them with useless crap.  So this is my solution this year.  Sheesh, that was a long round about way to get to the point ...

I shopped around for the cups, but found by far the best deal at Lakeside (I picked the blue ones).  At roughly $2.50 each this was a steal.

All the cups have the following inside:
  • Some Bazooka bubble gum ($4.99 for a ridiculous bucket of it that I had to swat Paul Bunyan off of several times until I was done stuffing cups)
  • Some lemonade, tea, and coffee packet thingies that I totally wanted to keep for myself.
  • Some of the cups, for the teachers that have been with Meatball all six years of elementary, also have a $5 gift card to Starbucks.  Remember, Starbucks cards are teacher currency like cigarettes are to prisoners.
  • His main teachers had a $20 Visa gift card, so they could spend it on whatever the heck they wanted be it dinner out, a pedicure, margarita, or some rocking school supplies.
  • As it happens, every teacher that Meatball has had from kinder on up is still at this school.  So he also went around and gave all of them one of these bookmarks from tatertots & jello.  Current teachers also had one in the cup so he thanked everyone for being part of his story!  Isn't that  *sniffle* so cute?
  • On the back of each was a personalized note to the teacher thanking them for teaching him back in whatever grade he had been in their class.
  • I nabbed the idea for the cute little tags here via Pintercrack and made my own so they say "thanks a latte for the tea-riffic ade you've given me!" since there is coffee, tea and lemonade stuff in each cup.

cut out the tags and book marks,
I used a paper cutter so I could go a lot faster
cut the tags so that they can slip on the straw
like a flag
like that!
Meatball wrote messages on the backs
of some of his bookmarks.
This one was especially touching.
My plethora of cups before ...
now you fill the cups, slap on the lids and
BAM you are done!
 All told, when I add everything up and divide it out each gift cost me roughly $10ish max which is pretty good in my opinion.  I was scared it would be worse anyway so comparatively it feels better.

And with that ... now I have to accept that it is very nearly summer.  That, my friends, is entirely another post in itself!

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