Saturday, December 29, 2012

Michael Miller Pink Giraffe Love Fuzzy Wuzzy Blanket with Minkee

Oh, I am already in love with the Michael Miller Pink Giraffe Love fabric my sister picked out.  We bought up the last two bolts we could find on etsy a few weeks ago. Yesterday, my sister Theresa picked out some hot pink minkee fabric to put as the backing on the blanket for the baby girl she is expecting. We took all there was on the bolt so I could make a blanket that would be useful for several years, not just for a baby. It is a nice lap blanket size. 

I had a blanket my mom made for me as a child that I called my "fuzzy wuzzy". I slept with it all the way through college and a couple of years into my first job before I bought a larger fleece blanket.  I think this blanket I made for my niece will have the same appeal. It is so fuzzy and soft to the touch.

Princess room decorations in the making

My sister and I went shopping yesterday for fabric to create items to decorate my niece's room.  My niece is expected to arrive in April 2013.

One item I am going to create is a Princess Canopy Turret and I want to make some fabric origami butterflies to decorate the outside.  There is a great tutorial at this blog but the page won't let me pin it to pinterest. I can't wait to create the Princess Canopy Turret, curtains, blanket, burp cloths, and sheets.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

New Dress, Vintage Simplicity Pattern 7383

I designed this dress to have a bit higher neckline.  I really like how it turned out. It is based on this pattern I bought almost a year ago: Simplicity 7383

This is how it turned out for me. My only upgrade next time will be the neck binding. What they had was much to tiny to act as a facing, but not quite wide enough to be used like bias tape, even though it was cut on the bias. I have some turquoise and brown material which I will be making into a dress like this next.

How to use Flickr photos as Buttons

After reading this blog post by Print Smitten that had a collection of free social media buttons in different colors, I wanted to know how to add them to my page. I had worked with the html before and I knew a little bit, but there were some vital links missing.  Finally I found Sew Many Way's blog post that gave a great step by step of how to edit the html of a page to include the buttons but she used photobucket, which is an account I don't have.

I wanted to use flickr to make this on my blog.

Here is how to get the img src link from flickr to use in Sew Many Way's instructions for step 2 and 3.

Upload your photo to flickr.

Click on Share, then go to Grab the HTML/BBCode and copy and paste the code that is there.

Copy and paste that code into a word processing document. Select the text from the img src portion of the code.

You are now ready to work on Step 5 of Sew Many Way's blog post.  You could make your life easier by copying the code on my page to enter into step 5. Right click my blog, choose "View Page Source", search for pinterest, then copy the lines associated with the content you want (lines 961 to 969 in the example below.

You can copy that code into your word processor, make the appropriate changes to the urls that apply for your content, then copy and paste it like steps 7 and 8 discuss.

Good luck! Hopefully your blog will look better and better as you add new items of interest to it.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas decorations from my Christmas ornament swap

These are the ornaments I received for Craft Goodies ornament exchange. Which one is yours? Do you have a blog I can link to?

Ornament 1: Snowman on a Lid from DeAnn Appelhans

Ornament 2: Crocheted Stocking from Amy at
Ornament 3: Burlap covered Ball

Ornament 4: Manger in Scrabble Tiles

Ornament 5: Button covered Ball

Ornament 6: Gingerbread House
Ornament 7: Bottle Top "Let It Snow" ornament

Ornament 8: A glass snowman that fell from my hands and shattered into a million pieces :( from Rhiannon Padgett at

Trade-a-holics Christmas Secret Santa Exchange Gift

So this year I participated with a group of ladies on etsy who all like to swap and trade the things they make. I made a set of potholders for this years secret Santa swap. It was my first attempt at quilting and it went well.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Christmas Ornament Exchange

Over the last couple of weeks I have had fun creating some unique Christmas ornaments for an exchange with

Ornament 1: Green metallic creative twist paper with Christmas colored lace
Ornament 2: Pink Batik with lace
Ornament 3: Orange cotton with lace
Ornament 4: Pink and Orange cotton with lace

Ornament 5: Blue floral cotton yo-yos with white topped pins
Ornament 6: Purple cotton with lace
Ornament 7: Burgundy batik with burgundy lace

Ornament 8: Green metallic creative twist paper with Christmas colored lace

Ornament 9: Green metallic creative twist paper with white lace and purple buttons

Ornament 10: Pastel purple, green, and blue yoyos with pearl topped pins

Looking forward to new ornaments from the 10 women who have my name in the Christmas ornament exchange.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Peanut Butter Pretzel Treats

I saw several posts on pinterest where people had used Hershey kisses or hugs and melted them between pretzels for a treat.  My husband loves peanut butter cups so I wanted to try melting them between pretzels.

Peanut Butter Pretzel Treats.

Pretzel snaps (I used Snyders of Hanover brand)
peanut butter cups

First I lined up pretzel snaps on a cookie sheet, then put a peanut butter cup on top of each pretzel upside down like the picture below.

 Preheat an oven to 250 degrees F. Then put the cookie tray with the pretzels and peanut butter cups in the oven for 3 minutes until they melt like the picture below.
 When you take the cookie sheet out, push a pretzel snap on top of each melted peanut butter cup so your treat looks like the picture below.
 Here is a close up of your treat. Allow them to cool for about an hour then use a plastic spatula to remove them from the cookie sheet and put them in a covered container.

Crochet hook holder

My mom had these crazy scrap squares that had been gifted to her by an elderly lady that couldn't take all of her quilting treasures with her. They worked perfect for creating a crochet hook holder.  I used 3 crazy scrap squares, two back to back and one folded over to be divided into pockets for each individual crochet hook, and one larger space for her small scissors.  I think it turned out cute.

 Crochet hook holder all open and expanded.
 Closeup of the individual pockets of the crochet hook holder
 Crochet hook holded with top portion folded over hooks
Crochet hook folded and tied with rick rack

Sausage Pillowcase

I followed the tutorial found at Passion et Couture to make a pillowcase without any visible seams. The tutorial is great.  I skipped the accent fabric and made the pillowcase in about 30 minutes.  Great for some gifts for Christmas!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Instagram now has web access!

I am so excited that now you can view the pictures I take with Instagram on the web even with out a smart phone!  Exciting.  Check out my profile at

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Handmade circle skirt and peasant shirt

Today is a Sadie Hawkins Hoe Down for the high school students at Battle Creek Academy.  I made a handmade circle skirt using the tutorial found at Circle Skirt Tutorial .  I made the peasant shirt by cutting apart an old shirt and adding a bit longer sleeves and neck line. I really like the new outfit I made.  I think it fits for fall events well!

Now off to the hoe down as a chaperone!

I have linked up this project with

Little Dress for Mia Amore

Last weekend I made this cute little dress for a little girl's baby shower. Check it out at

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Is it time for more than one Twitter account?

I was reading this article today "When One Twitter Account Is Not Enough" as I have been considering the mix of tweets I have on twitter.  I blog about sewing, crocheting, other arts and crafts, and food here on Carla's Inspirations. I reflect on my teaching on my blog Dig Belyea.  I include links and blog articles of interest to students at my school at Dig Counseling. All of these blogs are connected with the same email address on blogspot. Would it be more appropriate to keep my crafting separate from my teaching which would be still separate from guidance counseling links of interest to students and parents at my school?  Does the combination of these topics cause concern with my followers at twitter? Right now I have all three of those areas combined on my twitter account @carlasinspirati

Ideas? thoughts? What have you done as an tweeter with multiple interests that may not have an overlap?

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Coconut Quinoa Pilaf

"Our absolute favorite quick meal is Coconut Quinoa Pilaf. It can be thrown together with only a few minutes prep and 30 minutes stove-top time.

2 cups quinoa
1 can coconut milk (nature's value brand is BPA free)
2 cups water
1 bunch green onions, sliced (I omit this if it's not in the fridge and it's still yummy)
1 medium red bell pepper, diced small (have some diced ahead of time in the freezer)
3 to 4 cloves garlic, crushed
3/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 to 1 teaspoon crushed red chili flakes (we do a heaping tsp and it's still not overly spicy)
1/2 cup chopped cilantro (we don't care for cilantro, so I omitted this)

1.  Rinse the dry 
quinoa in a fine mesh strainer under warm water.

2.  Place rinsed 
quinoa into a medium saucepan with the coconut milk, water, green onions, red pepper, garlic, sea salt, and chili flakes.  Cover and bring to a boil, then turn heat to a low simmer and cook for about 20 minutes.

3.  Remove pot from heat and let pilaf cool in pot for about 10 minutes.  Then add chopped cilantro and gently fluff with a fork.  Serve hot.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Reflections on how to create social media buttons

I totally want to create some social media buttons to match with my website.  This looks like a great tutorial.  I need to follow this and see if this works.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

American Sewing Guild Meeting Stash Swap

I am looking forward to the stash swap tonight.  I need to measure the fabric I want to submit for swapping tonight. Looking for some yardage to make some little girl dresses.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Different tech tools for #flipclass

Other great ideas from #flipclass discussion tonight on twitter.  More reflections to come.

Excellent summary by Mrs. Kirch

Using Cell Phones in a Math Classroom

This wiki has some ideas on how other teachers are using cell phones in their classes as well as some policies that schools are using to help students become better digital citizens. I was taken to this wiki by a comment on an article about 5 reasons to allow students to use cell phones in schools

#flipcon12 archives: From Innovation to Implementation

I need to watch this video From Innovation to Implementation because I want my students to learn how to FAIL - First Attempt In Learning.

Guidelines for Success in Mrs. Belyea's Class for #flipclass

I was reading this blog about #flipcon12.  I am still trying to work through what I want students to really be able to do.  So far this is my list of priorities.
  1. Relationships/Connections
  2. Communication/Conversations
  3. Perseverance
  4. Collaboration
  5. Creative Media
  6. Reflections
I need to watch "A Flipped Approach to Assessment" soon.

Goal Setting for Self-Pacing

I was reading Flipping the Elementary Classroom and came up on a comment that gave me an epiphany. Students need to learn how to goal set for themselves in order to self-pace and make progress through a flipped classroom (or any classroom really).  As I look at this fall, part of my relationship building will be looking over the self-pacing that a student sets up for themselves.  Helping them see how they can complete all the things they need to do and learn as much as they can to prepare themselves for the future they want is what I think is key to helping my students be lifelong learners.

Thanks to Gooru - Finding the Virtual Math Lab

I was reading on 35 sources of curated educational videos about Gooru which has curated videos that are 2,600 standards-aligned and personalized study guides.  On Gooru, I found a link to this virtual math lab which has explanations and tutorials for most of the lower level college math classes but could be used by a high school student to brush up on math learning.  Go to WTAMU virtual math lab to give it a try.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Redefine Learning Spaces

Today I was reading Redesigning Learning In a Flipped Classroom

Important things to remember: All students learn in different ways - celebrate those ways of learning and help those same students push themselves outside of their comfort zone to learn in new ways to maximize their understanding.

A flipped classroom requires a shift in my teacher thinking - students can learn anywhere and any time and their time with me may not always be directly be related to math, chemistry, or careers.

Chaos that others may see is what is engaged learning for my students. I want to do what is best for my students at all times and in whatever form that may be.

Quote: "Students are engaged in their learning. They are coaching one another through hard questions. Groups form spontaneously, based on self-identified needs. There is freedom to be wrong, free from a fear of failure or negative consequence. Since the class is student time, the “noise” is really hypothesis, creation, and critique in their purest forms. Also bear in mind, this change does not happen overnight. This movement requires a shift that has to occur in both the student’s, as well as the teacher’s, perception of school and the learning process. This requires a healthy investment of time and energy."

As I think about this quote, how can I make this happen?

I want to meet my students learning needs for all students. Using videos, textbook readings, interactive online tools, and other Web 2.0 options I can provide the resources to my students to be successful.

Flipping a classroom is a philosophy, not a procedure.

John Tague's comment was compelling "one of the guiding principles of my class: forward progress by every student every day. The other is: no one gets held back or left behind."

Flipped Class Musings

I have been enjoying watching videos, reading blogs, and writing about my thoughts concerning flipping my classroom.  Delia from  hit it on the head: Lightbulb : Higher order activities at school with me, lower order activities at home using Bloom's taxonomy.  I want my students to think deeply in class where I am there to help them and to do the lower order things at home where they will need less if any help from me.

Friday, April 27, 2012

The Log Cabin 6 month anniversary Giveaway!

If you are looking for some cute material to round out your stash or some cute crocheted items or embellishments, head over to the Log Cabin giveaway at

Enjoy checking out another blog!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Paying It Forward: Surprise Gifts for Blog Followers

When I was checking my google reader this morning and reading what everyone has been up to, I found Lazy Daisy Crochet doing something really fun! She is playing a game of sorts, that she found on  Oodles 4 Noodles, by crocheting surprise gifts for her followers. I love to create surprise gifts and thought this would be so fun, so here at Carla's Inspirations, I am going to play too! Here are the rules if you want to play:

1.  I will send a surprise gift to the first three commenters on this post. The gift will be handmade by me.  It will be sent sometime in the next 365 days. It will be a surprise.  We all love getting surprises in the mail, right?

2. To sign up and receive a gift, you must play along, too. Pay it Forward on your blog, by promising to make a surprise for the first three people who comment on the post. 

3. You must have a blog (that is updated, as I will blog stalk you to find the right gift for you). Include your blog address in your comment. 

4. After commenting here, you must repost this or something similar to your blog in 48 hours.  If not, I will chose the next person who comments…It's that simple!! :)

I am looking forward to playing this fun game with my fellow bloggers and making something special and handmade just for them.  

Oh and check out  Lazy Daisy Crochet, Create Bella Create and Oodles 4 Noodles  , and send them some love!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

An Easter Dress

I made the cutest little handkerchief hem dress for a friend's daughter for Easter time. I can't wait to see the little girl wear it. It is definitely a twirly quality dress.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Curtains and Valances

I have finished a special order project for a customer and took a picture of the items hanging from my windows. The valances are very tightly arranged on the window rod. I am so pleased with the curtains and valances. Can't wait to see them hanging in my customer's home.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

What should I crochet from this yarn?

I received the best package from The Sheep and I in the mail today - 4 skeins of yarn! The black and red skeins are destined to be potholders for a newly married couple. The last 2 skeins are beautiful hand-painted wool in an array of yellow, blue, purple, and pink. It reminds me of pansies - my favorite flower. What should I make with these hand painted wool skeins?

Monday, March 12, 2012

Granny Hexagon Doll Clothes

After having seen an awesome link on pinterest about a granny hexagon shrug, I set about making a granny hexagon shrug for a doll for a little girl's birthday that is coming up. This visual how to of the original maker helped a lot as well as this youtube video to figure out the magic circle center. The doll size granny hexagon shrug turned out cute with 6 rounds of granny stitches! I am totally going to further explore making the child size and adult size of this shrug because it is pretty simple to complete.