Tiny Hats

My Sunday project was these little hats.  They were somewhat fast to hook up and I love that I only used yarn I already had from previous projects.  They came out seriously cute.  In fact so cute, that I've been trying to come up with more little people to gift new color variations!

This shell stitch baby hat is a gift for Matt's cousin's new little girl.  It looks so tiny to me, but it is a 3-6 month size and I wouldn't doubt if it's way too big for a two-week-old.

I couldn't send the baby a hat and nothing for her big sister, right?  So this hat is also on its way.

Of course my girls had to test it out first.  I hope she likes it half as much as these turkeys did!

Weekend Highlights

This weekend the kids headed out with Matt to watch a little basketball.  We've been trying to expose them to women's sports whenever possible and they had a blast at this game (free t-shirts and mini basketballs certainly helped).  Of course, EJ had the play-by-play on what the cheerleaders dance routine and what they wore.  The girl loves a fancy outfit!

While they were at the game, I was checking out a bridal show with some lovely (and super fun) ladies.  We saw some fun fashions, tasted lots of yummy cake, and I scored this awesome foam bride and groom set.  The girls think I got them as a gift for them, but I kind of dig them myself!

It was a movie weekend too.  Have you played the Redbox trivia game?  The questions are pretty darn easy and if you answer 5 correctly, you get 50 cents off your next rental.  This weekend I watched: 50/50, The Ides of March, Moneyball and Midnight in Paris.  Clearly, I have taken advantage of this discount.  I recommend all of the movies too.

Speaking of movies, I added the answers to Friday's Movie Playlist post in the comments.  If you haven't checked it out, please head over and give it a shot.

Matt got all our hardware installed in the kitchen.  I can't even begin tell you how truly happy this makes me.  It is just so much easier to use our kitchen.  And...we are so close to done with the kitchen now.  We need to rehang our main light fixture and figure out the flooring and then we are DONE!

Matt was busy working...I was busy shopping!  I had a coupon that was only good for Sunday, so I headed out and bought yarn for two upcoming gift projects.  I also used some yarn from my stash to create another present, but I'll share more on that tomorrow.

And the best gift project of the weekend, was a hat for Matt!  He patiently helped me by trying on the men's hats for our hat project and really liked them.  So this past week, I made one just for him.  He wore it all weekend and I'm pretty sure he wasn't just patronizing me.

Movie Playlist

Do you hear a song and think immediately of a certain movie?  I'm not talking about theme songs, just those that always make you think of the movie they played a part in.  This mix is filled with my "movie songs" (and therefore is certainly dated), but I'd love to hear which songs make you think of movies!

Movie Song Mix
American Girl Tom Petty
Bittersweet Symphony The Verve
Kids In America Kim Wilde
People Are Strange The Doors
Son of a Preacher Man Dusty Springfield
Fight The Power Public Enemy
Time After Time Cyndi Lauper
Everyday Buddy Holly
In Your Eyes Peter Gabriel
Mess Around Ray Charles
My Sharona The Knack
If You Leave O.M.D
Stuck In The Middle With You Stealers Wheels

Have you guessed which movies these songs make me think of?  I'll leave the answers in the comments sometime this weekend.

Origami Heart Bookmarks

There are heart projects all over the blog-world these days, but I can't say that I've been feeling ambitious enough to try them out.  However, this heart bookmark tutorial caught my eye.  Jack & I tried our hands at creating origami yodas just last week (inspired by reading this book) and I figured if I could do that, I could definitely manage these beauties.  I snuck the one shown above into Jack's book when he wasn't looking and that inspired him to try his hand at it too.

 {sorry about the yellow pics...it was dark outside!}

It is a really nice tutorial and easy enough for both of us!  One tip if you are using one-sided paper...start with the pretty side down and your heart will end up colorful!

Work-in-Progress Wednesday 18

I started Livie's shrug for the wedding this weekend.  It's actually a cardigan and I've never made one before, so I thought I may have some trouble.  But it was going pretty well and I took this pic of Liv on Sunday.  In hindsight, I can already see the trouble in this photo, but I didn't realize it then.  See, I still had 3 more rows around the outsides and it's already well over her shoulder.  Ooops!  In full disclosure, I am using a different yarn than is recommended (as I wanted to use the same yarn I used for EJ's shrug) and I was working the 3-4 year old sizing on the pattern.

I didn't get a photo of her wearing it, but this is the point I was at when I needed to add the sleeves.  Based on the photo in the pattern I thought this part was part of the sleeves.  Again, in hindsight, this part is supposed to fit the kid's body only and the sleeves are completely separate.  As you can imagine, the last four rows went down half of Liv's arm.  Not going to work!

And so the work above became this...

And now it is this...

I started over with the same yarn, one size smaller hook, and the smaller-sized pattern (I will either do the 12-24 mo or the 2-3 year depending on how it fits Liv...so far they have been the same pattern).  I have also decided not to work on it late in the evening (as I did the first time), so that I can regularly have Liv try it on to make sure I'm still on track!

Joining up with Yarn Along at Small Things & WIP Wednesday at Tami's Amis.

Ask A Silly Question...

Perhaps a question like...what is that thing? (By the way, it's a dragon the Livie made for Chinese New Year at her school)  Or it could be many questions, like for the kids' yearly questionnaire, which we completed last week.  For the most part, I feel I could answer the questionnaires before they do (Newlywed Game style) and get most of our answers to match.  But often they surprise me, or at least make me laugh, with their answers and it has been fun to go back and look at their past answers too.

I found one set of questions super interesting this year though.  We always ask them to tell something they love about each person in their family.
About Me -
Jack - she always has crafts for us to do
EJ - she has fun stuff for us to do
Liv - we go everywhere...like the swimming pool...we just go everywhere

About Matt -
Jack - he plays games with us
EJ - he plays with us a lot
Liv - he makes all kinds of stuff with me, like we cook pancakes

Clearly we have pretty defined roles with the big kids and honestly, it is what I'd expect them to say.  However, after looking at Olivia's responses, I found it curious how different their experiences with us are and I think I know why that is.  When Liv was born, Jack was in half-day kindergarten and EJ was two.  I stuck towards home with my new baby, where I could have some control of the situation, and so we made lots of crafts to fill our days.  As Liv has grown, she's been the one who runs errands with me and gets to do the fun outings, while the big kids are in school (or morning summer school).  Again, the big kids are doing projects with me during naptime or in the evenings at home.  I know it's just the way it goes, but I find it very interesting how I'm the same mom, but seen two very different ways.

So yesterday, while Livie was making that dragon, Jack & EJ & I headed to the museum (they had the day off of school).  It was an extremely quick trip, but they had a great time visiting the dinosaurs and the butterflies. And I had a great time making a memory with them "going somewhere" ... finally!

Santa Doesn't Tune Guitars

Since Christmas, Jack has picked up his guitar to play it a little and it has been out of tune.  Painful to listen to out of tune actually.  So during Sunday naptime, we went to the internet for a little help.

With the help of this site, I got his guitar sounding much better.  I can't say it's completely in tune, but it's the best I can do (I haven't tuned an instrument in probably 15 years or so) and it sounded a lot better.

Then we found this chord helper and spent the afternoon playing around trying to match the finger patterns and sounds.  Who knew that you could do so much with a guitar and a mouse?

We've got to get this kid into guitar lessons though.  He is loving playing around with the guitar, but I know how much more he would love it if he actually got the chance to learn a song or something!  He's also pressuring us to let him join the orchestra at school.  I figure if we're going to head into music lessons, we should start with an instrument we already own right?

The Hat Project

As a Christmas gift from the kids to their Grandmothers, Godparents, teachers and VIPeeps, we collaborated on a hat project.  The gift portion was the photo tag (shown above) attached to a kid-made winter hat ornament (click the link to see the tutorial from Goodknits).
{I didn't get a photo of any of their finished ornaments, so the pic on the right is from the Goodknits tutorial}

The mom-made portion of the gift was to crochet hats to donate to our area homeless shelter.  I decided to make a number of sizes and patterns to make it more fun (and to fit more people too).

First up is the Ribbed Wrapped Cap For Kids.  I really liked this pattern and it was an easy one to do in front of the tv or while other things were going on.  The hat is pretty thick, so I think it will be nice and warm.  I made one a little bigger than the pattern to fit my own head, so three kid-size and one mom-sized in this pattern.

Another pattern I tried out was the Men's Ribbed Hat.  This one is the warmest hat by far and Matt really wants one of his own (it's that cozy).  The folded brim makes it super adjustable for any head size and it seems to have a good stretch too.  The pattern is a little monotonous, but it was a great one to work on while I listened to my first audiobook.  The blue blob on the right is in progress here, but eventually became a finished hat.

The Easy Peasy Woman's Winter Hat is a great basic hat pattern, but it can be kind of hole-y when worn.  I feel like it's more of a fashion hat than a keep someone warm outside in sub-zero temperatures hat.  It was a simple pattern though, so I made one woman's sized hat and then three kid-sized hats (using EJ as a sizing guide).

With my last few skeins of yarn, I wanted to try some new patterns.  The top two hats are from the Basic Guy Hat Pattern.  The top left is similar to the Ribbed Wrapped Cap but in a much larger size.  The top right is simple in that it is mostly just single crochet.  Both patterns made very thick and warm hats.  The bottom hat is the Crocheted Ribbed Hat.  Again it is similar to the Ribbed Wrapped Cap but with a very different brim.  It was fun to try each of these patterns to mix it up a bit.

In the end, fifteen crocheted hats are heading to the shelter next week (along with a crocheted scarf and several store-bought hats and gloves).  This was a really fun project to do together (the kids worked on their hat ornaments while I crocheted) and it was fun to do a gift this year where we donated something we made (in the past we've done a monetary donation as part of the kids' gifts).  Clearly, I need to collaborate with my kids more often!

Work-in-Progress Wednesday 17

My brother is getting married in a few months and the kids are getting to play special roles on the big day.  I found really cute dresses for the girls, but they are both sleeveless.  I don't think that is going to work, especially given our late Winter this year, in early April.  So, I figured that instead of trying to find them sweaters, I would make them instead.  This is the start of EJ's shrug (I made it as written in the pattern and it's a perfect fit).  It still needs edging and more sleeves, bit this is the basic shape.  I did it in cotton (which just happened to be on sale) and the cost for the entire shrug will be under $2!  It's a quick pattern too, so next week I'll move on to Liv's wedding sweater

Joining up with Yarn Along at Small Things & WIP Wednesday at Tami's Amis.

Quick Change

 {before photo (red) courtesy of accessory addiction}

I bought this vintage gumball machine over a year ago, but finally did the quick change I had planned for it just last week.  A little disassembling, some spray paint, and a little soap & water gave quite the transformation.  I'm loving the fresh new look in our dining room and the pop of turquoise.


As expected, the snow hit at the end of last week and so this weekend we went sledding.  It is not my favorite thing in the world (I hate being cold), but we all had a good time.  We left exhausted after lots of sledding, hill climbing, snow mold playing and snow angel making.  Thank goodness for slippers and lots of hot chocolate!

Spring Green

Two more friend birthdays...two more scarves/cowls.  Apparently it's my signature gift (yes, that is me trying to make it sound better)?  There are just so many great patterns out there and I can't resist them!  In fact, I haven't hooked the same pattern twice.

So, last month I showed my two different (but very similar) skeins of green yarn and today I thought I'd show you what became of them.  EJ is modeling the Queen Anne's Lace Scarf above and below is the finished Cardiff Cowl.

I didn't get a chance to have one of my models try it out, so was thrilled when Karri posted this pic for me to steal...hee, hee.  I think it looks great on her...especially with the navy stripes.

I'm thinking I need to make myself a cowl (or start selling them given that I can't seem to stop making them).  I am still building my list of cowls I love, but haven't made yet...1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6...

Seasons Change

I have not been doing so great with Livie off at school most mornings.  The house is too quiet, I have no one to talk to when running errands...it's kind of lonely.  Yes, I know most of you just called me insane...out loud!  I get that and I know that things will change before I know it.  However, I realize now that even though I never, ever, ever planned to be a stay-at-home mom, clearly I was meant to be one.  I've never been home alone (I've dreamed of it, but it doesn't usually happen) and I miss my goofy girl.

Luckily for me, the weather has been awesome the last couple weeks, so whenever the kitchen work crews have not been here to keep me company, I've been trying to get outside for a walk.  I am also really lucky to live in a city with an amazing park system.  I mean, I live in a city (not a huge one, but not small either) and yet I get to take walks with these kinds of views!  What is also very cool is that these paths are super accessible to the city.  There are busy streets right behind where I was standing to take both of these pics, but if you plug in your headphones and focus on the pretty stuff, you can easily forget where you are.

As you read this, we are supposed to be getting a bunch of snow.  I am not happy about saying goodbye to these warm days (or as my friend dubbed it...January Spring), but real Spring will be here soon, right?

P.S.  I tried to make a little joke with my post title there, but all it did was make me sing this the entire time I was writing...ugh!