Deep in the Heart of Texas Blog Hop

Welcome to the "Deep in the Heart of Texas" blog hop!  Over 40 Texas teacher bloggers have joined together to share what we love about our state as well as ideas and freebies that we love.  You will also have the opportunity to enter to win TpT products and TpT gift certificates by entering using the rafflecopters included in each post.  Down at the bottom, you will see all of the blogs participating in the hop.  Just click and you will be taken to their posts.  We hope you love what you find.  Happy Valentine's Day!

Howdy! I am Mom2punkerdoo, but my friends all call me Kim.  I am a 40-something wife, mother, native Californian turned Texan, wannabe photographer, occasional scrapbooker, teacher turned homeschool parent, Facebook addict, Disney fan, pet lover, TPT seller and an aspiring runner who loves to throw a good party! Almost 8 years ago we made our way to McKinney, Texas and we haven't looked back!  

I will start by saying that the friends I have found since moving to Texas have made living here a true blessing above and beyond all the other things I love about McKinney, Texas,  It was truly hard to pick just a few things to share with y'all, but I managed to narrow it down to two for now.

#1 Singer/Songwriter Night at Cadillac Pizza Pub 

There is a lot to love about downtown McKinney, but Tuesday nights at Cadillac Pizza Pub is definitely a highlight.  The food and drinks are great.  I am a fan of  the Tony's Ranch House Salad and my boys love sharing a Smoky Pie, but what we really love is the live music.  We are partial to the singer/songwriter that performs on the first Tuesday of the month, Zane Williams.

If you are a fan of Texas country music or just good music that tells a great story then you really need to listen to Zane.  We found him a few years ago on a Tuesday night playing at Cadillac and fell in love with his music.  We were homeschooling back then so going out on Tuesday nights was doable and his show is family friendly, as are almost all of his songs.  As a matter of fact, many of his songs contain messages, values and morals I want my son to listen to...can't say that about a lot of today's artists. Needless to say we have been huge fans every since.  

So if you are making plans for a trip to downtown McKinney I highly recommend a stop by Cadillac Pizza Pub and if you can make on the first Tuesday of the month you will be in for a real treat.  Just be sure to get there early as it fills up fast!

#2 Our Trails
McKinney Texas Trails Mom2punkerdoo

A few years ago McKinney started expanding their trails throughout town.  About that same time I started putting more time and effort back into running.  The timing was perfect.  You can now find me here at least once a week. I often meet with my running partners in one the school parking lots nearby and we do our long runs on these trails, away from cars and noise surrounded by a bit of nature. There is a small creek we cross over a few times, we loop around near a new city dog park , and we have occasionally seen an armadillo or two. You will find runners, walkers, and bikers on these trails and they are plenty wide enough for all of us.  If you find yourself in McKinney and it's not July or August you might want to make your way to Bonnie Wenk Park and from their you can check out our fabulous trails for yourself. 

McKinney Texas Trails Mom2punkerdoo

Much like picking one thing I love about my town was hard, this also took some time to narrow down. It being Valentine's Day and all I decided to go with my favorite book about love, The Veleveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams.  Can you believe I never recall having read this book as a child?  I do recall the first time I read it though. My now husband gave it to me as a gift when we were dating many year ago. Pretty sweet for a college boy isn't it?  

the velveteen rabbit mom2punkerdoo
This is the version my now husband gave me many years ago.

A few years later, when I landed my first teaching job The Velveteen Rabbit happened to be one of the 3rd grade literature units I need to teach.  Luckily, I had the two very best teaching partners on the planet. They shared ideas, plans, projects, and most important of all what remains my all time favorite culminating activity ever....The Velveteen Rabbit Tea Party (click to read more).

Needless to say I fell in love with the book, the message is shares, and the fun I have had making it come to life.  Did you know you can get this book for FREE?  It is in the public domain as it was written 1922.  This makes it perfect for using in the classroom without having to purchase a lot of books.  You can find it online several places, but this link also includes the original illustrations too!

Freebie Time! This is one of the first freebies I made for TPT, but I updated it this month to share the new and improved version with you today!

Editing Writing freebie mom2punkerdoo

It includes simple editing and revising checklists to help your students self and peer edit their writing. These checklists remind students to check for proper punctuation, use of adjectives, word variation and staying on topic. There are two different styles of checklists included.

With the update I  added a 6 point writing rubric and time order/transitional words reference chart for your growing writers! 

Editing Writing Freebie Mom2punkerdoo
Click to Download!

I hope you enjoyed reading about my hometown and some of the things I love!  Now keep scrolling to get to the giveaways!

Check it out y'all!  Lots of great giveaways with the hop around Texas! Be sure to enter and then hop on over to read more about what we love about our hometowns in Texas. Who knows, you might find yourself inspired to plan a trip through the Lone Star State!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
a Rafflecopter giveaway
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a Rafflecopter giveaway
Click on the buttons below to visit some other awesome Texas bloggers!


  1. Glad to be part of the blog hop with you! Happy Valentine's Day! Julie

    Green Apple Lessons

  2. We have lots of trails around where we live too and they are great, especially with a baby. Thanks for participating in the hop!

    Literacy Spark

  3. Thank you for sharing pictures from your neat city. Sandy

  4. The Cadillac Pizza Pub sounds like a great place! We'll have to try it out next time we go that way.
    Love Teaching Kids