some time at the park

January 29, 2015

I know, I know. It's sort of douchey to be posting photos of kids in light coats with no hats in January, when so much of the East Coast is covered in snow. Here in Omaha, we've had a few days with near-record highs, and so we've been taking full advantage.

We've been trying our hardest to go out and about as much as possible the last few days, because our temps are supposed to drop dramatically this weekend. So of course we went to the park.

Lou got to go on the slides for the first time, and clearly she was not impressed. She did, however, squeal and giggle the entire time she was on the swings, especially when Owen would shout "WHEE!!!" at the top of his lungs in an effort to make her giggle even harder.

And yes, I know he's over 3. And we're working on pumping our legs.

While he may still prefer to be pushed on the swings, Owen is a huge fan of climbing all the things on the slides, giving me minor heart attacks at every turn. He befriended a boy a year older than him, and that boy's dad and I chatted about the fear we parents have.

I watch him climb and jump, and part of me thinks this next time will be the one where he falls and breaks something. But I let him go, standing farther and farther away until I'm nowhere near him, and he makes it up just fine every time. Because of course he does. Because that's what he's built for right now, to climb and jump and give me minor heart attacks. And then he stands at the top, looks for me, and shouts, "I DID IT  MAMA! DID YOU SEE?!"

And my heart melts, and I shout back, "I DID SEE! YOU DID IT!! I'M SO PROUD OF YOU!" Because I did see, and I am so proud. I've never been prouder of him, of us, of this life we live.

the first box for Syrian refugees

January 28, 2015

A few weeks ago I shared about the Salaam Cultural Museum, and how they are collecting items to send to Syrian refugees. My plan was to knit up bunches of hats and send them over, a box at a time. And then I got all busy making other hats, and didn't get a single hat into the box I'd set up.

Then last week, I decided it was time to do some clearing out; specifically, clearing out the stash of baby hats I'd been holding onto from when I made and sold baby hats on Etsy. It's been long enough now, it's time to let those hats go to some babies who can use them.

This photo contains 47 baby hats (and one pair of newborn baby pants) that I boxed up and sent. While these aren't newly made hats, they are handmade, and are donations, so I counted them towards my 10k goal. It definitely felt good to get them out of the house and on their way to some babies who will need them.

The next box I fill (and there will be more!) will contain hats of all sizes, shapes, and colors. But this box was just newborn sized hats. It makes me so sad that there's babies being born every day in refugee camps, so far from the homes of their families, with so little to help keep them safe and warm. These hats won't change the state of life for the babies, but it might give a bit of much needed warmth, and that's at least something.

I've already started adding Tiny Hearts Hats to the second box, and may need to re-think my "always ship priority mail because it's easier" approach this year; things could get expensive!

Flat Knit Hats For Babies And Kids

January 27, 2015

One of the questions I find I'm asked most often in the comments of my free patterns is how to make my hats knit flat instead of in the round. I haven't written any of my hat patterns with instructions for knitting flat because I am fully in love with my circular needles, but because so many knitters knit flat, I've got it on my list to re-write some of my patterns with instructions for both ways of knitting.

Because that's not probably going to happen any time soon, I'm going to share some flat knit patterns that should fit the bill while you wait! First up, flat knit hats for babies and kids.

Top Left: Aviatrix, by Justine Turner. (free Ravelry download) I've made bundles of these in the past, although I haven't made one in what feels like years. Might have to get back to it, as Lou is in the "rip all hats off my head" stage. It truly is one of the best baby hats I've ever used or gifted!

Top Right: Cool Wool, by Ekaterina Blanchard. (purchase through Ravelry) This pattern comes with instructions for both the cowl and the hat, with sizes to fit toddlers, children, teens and adults.

Bottom Left: Split Brim Toddler Hat, by Stranded Knitter. (free Ravelry download) I love that this hat is made using super bulky yarn; I can see it whipping off my needles, both for the toddlers in my life, and for charity donation! With just one size, it seems like this hat will actually fit a wide variety of kiddos, stretching from 17" to 20".

Bottom Right: Pilot Cap, by Theresa Belville. (for purchase pattern) This pattern features four sizes, from newborn through child, and is meant to give complete coverage for cold winter days. I've got this pattern saved in Ravelry and on my computer, but I'll admit I haven't knit it yet. 

Visit my Flat Knit Hats board on Pinterest for even more inspiration!


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