Welcome to Nurtured Potential!
I am Allison Blair, and I’m so honored you are here. I am a teacher at heart who can never pass up an opportunity to share information with someone – from my first grade students to the person in line behind me at Target. 🙂
Luckily, that teaching compulsion comes in handy — I am a first grade teacher of over 15 years, a parent coach and a teaching/parenting blogger and (most importantly!) a mom of two little ones.
I have especially strong passions for:
- early literacy learning and classroom and home libraries
- creating a love of learning and reading in children
- behavior management
- building classroom communities and family closeness
- working with children and families dealing with ADHD in their daily lives
- child development and parent education
- purposeful teacher and parent word choice when interacting with children
The Perfect Words…
Along with being an educator, I have a degree in Rhetoric and Media Studies – my alma mater’s fancy name for communications and public relations. I love combining my background in communications and my love for using the right words in any situation to enhance my teaching and my work with parents and children, including my own children at home.
I have seen time and time again that even a slight tweak in the way you say something to a child can make a HUGE difference in their response, their mindset, their self-esteem, their compliance and their behavior. I love finding the perfect phrasing in all kinds of situations to help children grow and embrace learning!
The most important thing is my life is my family, including our two young sons — Ry-guy, who is almost two, and G-man, our eight-year-old. They are the lights of my life and little human beings that I truly admire and love.
There is absolutely no one “perfect” way to parent and every mom has different styles. As for myself, I’ve never been a mom that packs our days with trips to museums, outings to parks and all kinds of exciting adventures (although I always admire the moms who do!). While we love to travel and even took G-man to Scotland and Iceland when he was 22 months, on an ordinary day, I’m more of an at-home, low-key parent.
My parenting style is what I’d call “calm fun”. I am huge fan of silly time with my kids, but I know that we can be silly without getting out of control… This creates moments of connection and laughter without heading into a behavioral downward spiral.
While we don’t spend our days out on the town, I enjoy doing things like playing legos and doing puzzles with my kids. I am very attune with my kids’ emotional needs and am a snuggly mom. While I may not dole out high-energy dance parties and elaborate multi-day art projects, I am the first one my kids come to if they need comfort, love or support.
Soothes my soul…
After a crazy hectic day in the classroom or at home, one thing that can always soothe me is organizing something… Ahh, the bliss! From organizing a concept I’m teaching my students, to organizing the linen closet, my classroom’s construction paper, or my son’s sock drawer, when I’m organizing I’m in my “flow”.
After a bit of me-time and with a newly functional organized space, all is right with my world again. It makes me feel like at least one little part of the world is under control… and organizing is certainly my favorite diversion during report card season. 🙂 (Anyone with me here?!?)
My other half
My husband, Tim, is a cheerfully optimistic and playful guy who loves art, sports and connecting with children – and is an amazing Dad, in my humble opinion.
He is an animator and character designer who knows how to have serious fun and draw some awesome stuff. Ever seen an esurance commercial with the animated spy-girl with pink hair, flown Virgin America Airlines a few years ago and watched their animated, in-flight safety video, or have a child who watched Sheriff Callie’s Wild West on Disney Junior? All projects that Tim animated or created the characters for!
Tim is known for his ability to create “cute” in his character designs and is bringing that to our blog, freebies, Teacher’s Pay Teachers products and clip art.
He is passionate about teaching people that they CAN draw, and I’m a testament to his success in imparting simple ways to approach drawing with doable, step-by-step strategies — and without freaking out! 😉
Tim and I are always eager to grow, have fun and try something new together — and we do our best to impart that joyful growth mindset in our children. We’ve done everything from taking gymnastics classes with friends at age 30 and playing co-ed adult soccer together, to designing our own holiday cards and figuring out how to create a blog and online business.
Both of us enjoy seeing the potential in things and doing DIY of all sorts -from my pottery, photography and pinterest crafting, to Tim’s animating, drawing and painting to our joint love of throwing elaborate birthday parties, creating amazing halloween costumes, using power tools and tackling home renovations.
We also love finding little ways to de-stress and add fun to our daily work and family life – Such as doing our family “horfy-dorfy” dance together, writing silly names on the bags of food in our freezer and finding small ways to bring awe and joy into our lives and the lives of others.
West Coast Love
We both grew up in Oregon and loved the year-round lush green scenery, traffic reports that actually report all slow traffic spots, our alma mater (Willamette University!) where we met while living across the hall from each other in the dorms freshman year, and, of course, our friends and family.
And, while we miss Oregon, we have also come to love the San Francisco Bay Area — where we have lived since 2000. We adore the hot, sunny weather in our part of The Bay, love the culture that comes with a big city like SF and are glad we are still so close to the beach… which is always a happy place for all 4 of us!
For over 10 years, I’ve been navigating autoimmune disease. I’m a researcher at heart and never settle for “somewhat acceptable.” Thus, I’ve pulled from western medicine, eastern medicine, functional medicine and other approaches to find the best ways for me to manage chronic illness and massive fatigue without horrible side effects that further ruin my body — always with hope and faith that there is improvement, remission and/or a cure right around any upcoming corner.
Many people who know me well consider my will-power to be a strength. The cornerstone of managing autoimmune disease and food sensitivities over the past 5 years has been a drastic elimination diet of everything I react to, but that is absolutely worth it when the trade-off is not having to be in pain and/or take medications with horrible side effects. I have stuck to it like glue and am so proud of my efforts and the resulting outcomes for my health!
It must be noted, though, that my will-power does not transfer to my ability to get to bed on time. As a night owl, I lose that will power battle most days of the week. 😯
You’re the best!
I’m so glad you’ve taken the time to get to know me and my family… And I’d love to get to know you! I’d be honored if you send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and share a bit about yourself. Are you here for inspiration in teaching or parenting – or both? What are you passionate about? What would make your life richer, more joyful and more easeful? What do you need right now?
I am truly so glad you are here and can’t wait to get to know you better!
PS – Send me a quick email and introduce yourself! What is most on your mind these days? 1 sentence or 20, I’d be honored to hear from you at email@example.com!