News for the Week of 1/29/14





IT'S TIME TO ORDER YOUR AUCTION TICKETS!


Auction Tickets Now Available!  The HSA Annual Auction is next Saturday - February 8th! Ticket orders and payments are due NLT this Friday, 1/31/14.  Visit the auction's website for a preview of the evening's events and delicious menu, by clicking here.  The auction committee does recommend paying for your tickets by check to avoid credit card fees.  To do this, you may send your ticket request into school.  Click here for an order form like the one appearing to the left.

The Auction Committee invites you to join in the fun of this year's Olympic theme and feature a photo of your child demonstrating their "Olympian" skills.  Click here for more information.



Family Pizza Lunch is scheduled for Friday, 1/31/14.  Everyone is welcome and invited to come and eat lunch with their favorite SMS student(s).  Student pizza lunches were ordered via the regular hot lunch menu.  The order period for guest lunches has now closed but you are welcome to join us with a brown bag lunch.



The lunch schedule for Family Pizza Lunch is as follows:

Prekindergarten, Kindergarten and Grades 1 & 2:  11-11:35am
Grades 3-5:  11:40am-12:15pm
Grades 6-8:  12:20-12:50pm


Upcoming School Masses - 
 February 7th at 9am
Ash Wednesday, March 5th at 12:15 - We will worship with our Parish family as the holy season of Lent begins.
April 4th at 9am
May 16th at 9am




Retelling the story of Rosa Parks - Learning came to life when First Grade  acted out the story of Rosa Parks. They did a fabulous job of retelling the events that happened in history so long ago. Kindergarten, 2nd, 3rd and 6th grade friends enjoyed the performance. 


St. Mary's School Playground Fundraiser "Dining for Dollars" - As you know, this year's HSA auction proceeds will be used for a new playground.  There is now another way to help raise funds for this important project.  The Avon location of Bertucci's is hosting 2 "Dining for Dollars" benefit nights.  Patrons presenting the "Dining for Dollar" coupon on Wednesday, January 29th and February 5th from 11am - 10pm will have 15% of their purchase donated to the St. Mary's School Playground Fund.  This coupon may be used on both Dine In and Carry Out purchases but is only valid at the Avon location - 380 West Main St (Route 44).  Click here for a "Dining for Dollars" flyer that contains 4 coupons. Enough for your family to enjoy two delicious dinners and also 2 to share with friends to help us have a fabulous new playground!


Head lice are an unpleasant reality that can affect students of all ages and genders.  All schools have established procedures for helping families manage an infestation of head lice.  Click here to learn about our school's procedures.  Our procedures are the same as those used by the Simsbury Public School system.   Click here for a helpful fact sheet about head lice and management of an infestation.



Athletic News - It's time to think about Jump Rope Club!  Click here for more information.


Hot Lunch Volunteers Needed!  We are still in need of lunch volunteers.  Click here for the Sign Up Genius.



Home & School Association News

In keeping with our mission this year to keep the Simsbury food bank stocked this year, please consider donating instant coffee -regular or decaf, hot chocolate, tea, regular coffee, decaf coffee, canned fruit, low sugar canned fruit and individually wrapped or toilet paper in a 4 pack.
HSA is currently forming a nominating committee to find candidates for our outgoing treasurer and president. Please consider joining the committee and have a say in your representation.

The HSA budget report from 1-26-14 is now available for review on the Parents Only secure page of our school website.  Click here to access the login screen.

Christine Kornacki shared insights into the illustration process
Last Friday, SMS Alumna and professional illustrator, Christine Kornacki, met with our students in grades 3-8 to chat about her most recent project, The Sparkle Egg.  To enjoy the presentation she shared with our students, click here.

Today (1/29) students in Prekindergarten - grade 2 met with local author, Fern Michonski. 
Fern Michonski provided an engaging presentation.
Both of these visits were part of our Catholic Schools' Month celebration.

As we finish our celebration of Catholic Schools' Month, don't forget that this week is Teacher Appreciation Week!  Don’t forget to tell your teachers how much you appreciate all they do for you!




Box Tops for Education:  The next Box Tops collection will end on Friday, February 7th.  Please send all Box Tops to your child’s classroom collection box.  Happy clipping!





CHOICE Program News - Family CHOICE participation statements were sent home with youngest or only students on Monday, 1/27/14.  If you have not already done so,  please check the back packs. This statement reflects CHOICE earnings through December 31st. As indicated on your Family Enrollment Agreement, participation in CHOICE is a mandatory part of your tuition obligation.  Families have until 4/31/14 to raise the required amount of money via CHOICE or to complete the obligation via an "opt-out" payment.  If you have questions about your CHOICE obligation, please contact Tammy Budnick at the school office or via tbudnick@stmarysimsbury.eduk12.net.

News for the Week of 1/22/14





We are excited to celebrate Catholic Schools Week from January 26th - February 1st. St. Mary’s School is an amazing gift to our children, our families and our community. At St. Mary’s School, our children grow and learn their faith daily. St. Mary’s School provides educational excellence, helping students succeed through challenging classes, creative and innovative instruction and modern technology.

An exciting addition to our Catholic Schools Week celebration is outreach to our surrounding parishes. On Sunday, January 26th, St. Mary’s School will be highlighted at six local parishes. We will be at the following parish masses:

Immaculate Conception in New Hartford - 11:30 AM Mass

St. Ann in Avon – 9:30 AM Mass

St. Bernards in Tarriffville -10:45 AM Mass

St. Catherine’s in Simsbury -11:00 AM Mass

St. Mary’s in Simsbury – 9:30 AM Mass

St. Therese in Granby – 10:30 AM Mass

We are asking all of families to help with this outreach. If you are a parishioner at one of these parishes, please try to attend that Mass. We would like students to wear their uniforms to that Mass so parishioners can recognize St. Mary’s students. Please answer any questions people may have about St. Mary’s and encourage any interested families to attend the Open House on Tuesday, January 28th at 6:30. We will also have flyers, pencils and note pads to hand out at Mass.



 Open House for Prospective Families - Tuesday, 1-28-14 at 6:30pm in the Parish Center.  Please encourage anyone that you know that might be interested in our school to come to this friendly, informative Open House.  Please ask that they RSVP to the school office - it helps us plan if we know how many guests we are expecting.





It’s time to start thinking about warmer weather. Save the date for the St. Mary’s School Fairway to Heaven golf outing on Thursday, May 22, 2014 at Hopmeadow Country Club. We are planning a great day so start getting your foursome together! Look for more information to register to play or sign up for a sponsorship opportunity in the coming weeks!



Author & Illustrator Visits -

Author, Fern Michonski

 





 The HSA is pleased to announce two special visits in celebration of Catholic Schools' Month.  Author, Fern Michonski will visit with students in PreKindergarten through grade 2 on Wednesday, 1/29.  Please note that this is a change to the program's original date.

Illustrator, Christine Kornacki





Christine Kornacki, SMS Aluma and Illustrator, will be at
St Mary’s School on Friday, January 24th to share apresentation about the illustration process of her new book The Sparkle Egg with grades 3 through 8.

St Mary’s Church will be hosting a book signing for Ms. Kornacki

on Sunday, March 9th, just in time for Easter!





 
 
 
 







Family Pizza Lunch is scheduled for Friday, 1/31/14.  Everyone is welcome and invited to come and eat lunch with their favorite SMS student(s).  Student pizza lunches were ordered via the regular hot lunch menu.  The order period for guest lunches has now closed but you are welcome to join us with a brown bag lunch.

The lunch schedule for Family Pizza Lunch is as follows:

Prekindergarten, Kindergarten and Grades 1 & 2:  11-11:35am
Grades 3-5:  11:40am-12:15pm
Grades 6-8:  12:20-12:50pm


Upcoming School Masses - 
 February 7th at 9am
Ash Wednesday, March 5th at 12:15 - We will worship with our Parish family as the holy season of Lent begins.
April 4th at 9am
May 16th at 9am



 
Home & School Association News

The next H.S.A. meeting is scheduled for Thursday, 1/23/14.  Click here for an agenda.






Auction Tickets Now Available!  It's less than a month to our HSA Annual Auction.  Visit the auction's website for a preview of the evening's events and delicious menu, by clicking here.  The auction committee does recommend paying for your tickets by check to avoid credit card fees.  To do this, you may send your ticket request into school.  Click here for an order form like the one appearing to the left.

The Auction Committee invites you to join in the fun of this year's Olympic theme and feature a photo of your child demonstrating their "Olympian" skills.  Click here for more information.






Box Tops for Education- The next Box Tops collection will end on Friday, February 7th.  Please send all Box Tops to your child’s classroom collection box.  Happy clipping!


Alumni News - Congratulations to Alex Carter, Class of '09!  Alex has been named to the Dean's List at the University of Scranton for the fall semester.  Click here to read more about Alex and other alumni with notable accomplishments.  To share alumni news, please email dhatch@stmarysimsbury.eduk12.net.




What's the buzz in grade 4? 

The relationship between producers and consumers and a chance to look at a bald faced hornets' nest up close!

Tuesday, 1/21/14 - 12:45pm Early Closing

 
 
Due to expected winter weather - Tuesday, 1/21/14
School will be dismissed early at 12:45pm. 
 
No PreK Enrichment or Aftercare.
 
 
Calendar Update - The author visit with Fern Michonski that was scheduled for Wednesday, 1/22/14, for students in Prekindergarten through Grade 2, has been postponed at Mrs. Michonski's request.  The visit is now scheduled for Wednesday, 1/29/14, from 9:20-10am in the Parish Center.

A Magical Travel Moment in New England

Sometimes the end of the day can feel like just the beginning. After a long, fun day in the York Beach, Maine, summer sun, the crowds lessen, the sky and ocean take on dramatic colors, the imposing rocky coast appears to relax a little, and the thick, humid air starts to refreshingly thin out. Add a touch of Mother Nature's Maine Division patent on salt sea air and a soft summer breeze, and you'll never want to leave. It's truly a magical travel moment in New England!

Having to leave soon after experiencing New England travel nirvana is particularly frustrating when on a day trip. Enjoying the moment, however, and reveling in this one-of-a-kind feeling that the Maine coast provides is always the road map to embark on for the memories will last forever.

You can log onto our York Beach, Maine feature article to learn more about this special coastal New England travel destination.

Short Sands Beach, York Beach, Maine (photo by Eric)0


Editor's note: This Magical Travel Moment in New England blog post is inspired by Maggie Kerrigan, author of The (almost) Blank Journal. Her book is a tremendous tool to help potentiate one's own innate creativity. I encourage you to read it!

New England Travel Resolution for 2014

My sister-in-law Maggie Kerrigan recently wrote a fantastic book entitled The (almost) Blank Journal to inspire clarity and creativity for daily writing. Meant for both the creative mind and highly structured thinker, Maggie's book features "prompts (motivational words and thoughts) for writing and drawing..." It's really a simple but brilliant concept. Plus, Maggie knows what she is talking about, given her quest for creativity as a significantly talented artist.

I own several web sites and blogs, but this one, the Weekly New England Travel and Vacation Gazette, has hit a creative road block several times in its existence without clear direction -- that is, until I opened Maggie's Christmas gift in the mail. As often as possible, I am going to try my hand at daily writing on this blog -- motivated and guided by Maggie's journal.

Today, I focus on Resolutions with the topic being New England Travel in 2014. Since we are on a tight family budget, cheap day trip destinations will be prioritized on the New England travel agenda for 2014. These destinations will need to be close to home and have something unique and interesting to offer.

One such inspirational place is Onset, Mass., a Victorian seaside neighborhood in Wareham, Mass. We visited last summer, but nowhere near enough. With cheap parking, a beautiful sandy free beach located on the bay, stunning Victorian residential architecture, a walkable downtown with little mom and pop shops and cheap eats restaurants like Marc Anthony's and Stash's (with seafood and water views), I know Onset will serve for us as a lower-cost alternative to Cape Cod and coastal southern Maine. I can hardly wait until summer!

A view from the Onset town common
The beach looks mighty inviting!
A welcoming, walkable downtown
What are some of your 2014 New England travel New Years resolutions? Please comment below, we'd love to hear your ideas!

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