punkinhead

hand knitted baby hats…for warm heads & warm hearts

Time ….or lack thereof.

Sometimes there’s just not enough time – and it’s that kind of day.  I had to work yesterday, so today I thought I’d take the morning off of church and get my To Do list done.  Then a lightning strike that could have awoken the dead knocked out the power.  Off to church I go, Power comes back on.
So now I’m here trying to get all my stuff done – in my haste, here’s a quick link to my latest creation – total credit goes to Heidi May of Thevelvetacorn.com for the pattern and the inspiration.   Thpullover-2ey are so stinkin’ cute!
pullover-1

And because of that whole ‘not enough time to do what we want to do’ issue – I only  have room to take a couple more orders before Christmas.  Comment below with questions or place your order ASAP at etsy.   https://www.etsy.com/listing/469636582/aura-pullover-child-cowl-neck-sleeveless?ref=shop_home_active_1

As always, thanks for reading.

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Don’t be a Downer

2016 has been one of the hardest years EVER for our family.   I know everyone has bad times, but this one seems to be unique and all falling within the last 8 months.  Full of calamaties, over and over, a little brain surgery here, car accidents there, young friends’ untimely passings, ruined vacations, illnesses, medical bills, etc.

And every time I think things are going to look up….

My friends have watched our struggle.  They’re an awesome group of people I’ve come to love and count on for their support.  I, however, feel I’m doing them a disservice lately –  because I’m catching myself being a Debbie Downer.   It’s true!  I AM the classic character from “Saturday Night Live” portrayed by Rachel Dratch.

http://www.nbc.com/saturday-night-live/video/debbie-downer/n11825

Whu whu whuuuu…. Like Debbie, I don’t ever seem to have any good news.  When friends ask How are You – what do I say?  Lie and say “Fine”?  Be truthful and say, “2016 sucks and I don’t think I can handle one more thing?”  I am at a loss.

And if I do share anything, frankly, I depress myself.  I can only imagine how they feel.

But I know my friends will listen.  And want to help.  And bring me treats and hugs.  Still, though – I haven’t been the best company.

I’m trying to change.  I’m trying to find the joyful things in life.   This past holiday weekend, our little family decided to try to find something fun to do every day.  We had to get out of the house, laugh, forget about any troubles.  We took the dog to the park and watched her crazy, lopsided run.  We discovered new parks.  We ate dinner on the rooftop.  We threw around the football.

Because wallowing isn’t a choice.  We have to be grateful for what is good in our lives, and that – to be pessimistic (optimistic?) – things could always be worse.  We have had a lot of blessings the last few months – and we are healthy, and alive, and for that we must be thankful.

This is one of my new favorite songs.  I keep singing the line, “Don’t be a Downer”.

I love this performance.

Finding the little things in life that you enjoy and make you smile.  That’s how we get through it all.

Don’t be a downer.

I’m trying.  I really am.

 

 

 

 

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Wisdom from a Hotel that’s both Exotic and Marigold

If you know me, you know I Heart Dame Judi Dench.  I first fell in love with her in “As Time Goes By” a phenomenal Britcom from the 90’s.   It’s funny and droll – full of that British humor I love.  It used to be my favorite thing to watch every Saturday night on PBS.   Yes, Saturday night.   In our house, every Saturday night was a Disney or Barbie movie, followed by excellent Britcoms after the kid went to bed.  Such is the life of a parent.

But, to my point, Dame Judi Dench is also in one of my favorite movies, “The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel”   (And, of course, its equally awesome sequel “The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel”.)  One of my favorite lines from BEMH is “Everything will be okay in the end, and if it’s not okay, it’s not the end.”   I recently had to take this advice to heart when I considered a job change.   It caused me anxiety, to be sure, but I just knew everything would work out.

And it did.  I was hooked up with a new job the very same day I left the old.   I am thrilled with my new position, love my new team (not that I didn’t love my other team members) and in many ways this is a much better fit for me.  And I never had any doubt it would all work out.

“God never closes one door without opening another”.   “Worry is a lack of faith.”   “Everything will be okay in the end, and if it’s not okay, it’s not the end.”    I believed them all.  And they werturbane all true.

Now I have more time with my daughter.  More time to knit.  I’m much happier.

And it’s not the end.  It’s a new beginning.

Oh, and here’s a new hat.   I suppose I shouldn’t forget that.

Click Store or here: https://www.etsy.com/listing/252172058/hand-knit-baby-girl-hat-knit-turban-hand.

Thanks for reading.

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New hats with a new model!

I don’t have much to say, except that I am blessed to be able to work with such beautiful babies.  And that this beautiful baby is now part of my friend family.   He scared us out of our wits by trying to – and eventually – visiting us 2 months early, but he has grown like crazy and we love seeing his double chin and chunky thighs develop.   Quite a change from that little 3 lb baby that arrived in January.   He’s doing great and we are all so lucky to have him here!   And now I get to use him as a model at the studio and we are going to have so much fun!   He doesn’t know what he’s in for, but he loves his Aunt Kathi.  And I love him, too.   What a doll.

hat2 - Copy hat1 Hat3 hat4 hat6

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Love seeing my hats in ‘action’!

Really, there isn’t any more gratifying feeling than making something for someone and they absolutely Love It!   This adorable baby is wearing a hat for her 1st birthday portraits and her mom gushed all over it.  Quite a good feeling, I have to say.

You can see more images at my facebook site:  http://www.facebook.com/punkinheadhats.

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When it’s time to change, you’ve got to rearrange {Hand knit baby hats/punkinhead}

Well, I”m sure you all knew immediately what fine, lyrical, timeless masterpiece that line above came from.  What?  You didn’t spend every afternoon of your childhood watching “The Brady Bunch”?   3 times on 3 different stations (yay for syndication!)?   Now, don’t you feel sad?  This is from the “Dough Re Mi” episode.   One of the best!  What am I saying, they were all the best to my 8 year old mind.   I know I drove my mother crazy watching that show over and over.  I understand now, after listening to all the Disney sitcoms (and their infernal laugh tracks) when my daughter was younger.  Note:  Get a tv room/den with French doors so you can protect your ears from the idiocy.

Anyway –  to my point, it has been a Time for Change in our household.

First, we finally succumbed to the begging of our teenager, and got a dog.   Our first dog.   And not just any dog, but a rescue dog that has turned out to be the neediest dog in the history of the World.  Sophie is a sweet thing, yes she is, but she loves you, and loves you, and loves you until you just want her out of your face.   So, that has been a big adjustment – for all of us.  And, sadly, the dog has attached herself to my husband, so now my daughter still wants a dog of her own.  Uh…no….knit baby boy hat blue/green

Secondly – I’ve made a slight career change and have started a 2nd job.   I never thought I’d become one of those people that actually had to keep a calendar, telling me where to be, when, but I have.   I am still at the studio, of course, but I can do a lot of my management, and online posting, etc., out of the office.  So, for 2 days a week I work on a friend’s real estate team as a Office Coordinator.  It has been a Whole New World for me (ok – now we can cue “Aladdin” and get that song stuck in our heads) but I love it – and I love the change.   I’ve been at the studio for (cough) 24 years and it was time for something new,  something to break the routine.  So here I am learning the world of real estate 2 days at a time.

Lastly – and this is HUGE – I used to spend my Friday nights cuddling with my little girl, watching a Princess or Barbie movie.  It was sweet, special times.   This Friday night I watched her back out of the driveway for a short driving lesson before going to a high school football game to hang out with her friends (Mom’s attendance not required, nor desired.)   How has this happened?   It was just yesterday she was wearing hats this size.  Now she’s already taken the ACT and the word ‘college’ is getting thrown about.   I’m not liking this, not liking this at all.

So, as you can imagine – these changes have brought around a lot more in our household.  We haven’t left the house as a family for more than a couple of hours – unless we’ve taken the dog to day care.  Yes, Day Care for the dog – Crazy idea when I first heard of it, Genius idea now that I have a dog.   My husband does even more of the laundry and grocery shopping, now that I’m working 10 hours some days.   My daughter is driving Me around.  And knitting, sadly, has been put aside.   So, here is a little boy hat I made months ago, that I just found and realized I never posted.

Happily, now that fall is upon us, and the evenings are getting darker, sooner, I’ve picked up the needles again.   I delved right in to a big project, and my wrists are still recovering.  I may need to slow it down again, but I’m hoping not.  I’m inspired to get some things done!

Of course, this hat, and others, are available in my etsy shop:  https://www.etsy.com/shop/punkinhead1.  And, just in case you don’t know the tune, you can watch “Time to change”  here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DyooALwfxO8   I’m going to consider it my Public Service Announcement for the day.  Enjoy.

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Lessons learned from Dory {hand knitted baby hats}

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“Starr”

We all love Dory from “Finding Nemo”, right?   The great Ellen Degeneres never fails to make us laugh – even in animated form.   Thinking of her speaking Whale – and doing it myself – never fails to crack me up.   I think it’s one of the funniest things ever.

So what did Dory teach me?  Besides how to speak Whale?  I use her line “Just keep swimming” a lot, especially at the studio, where life can just get overwhelmingly hectic.   And when things are just too much to handle – I ‘just keep swimming’ and somehow I’ll get through it all.

Well, that’s what I was thinking of the aqua colored hat right here.   This is actually the 3rd hat I made- in a row – trying to get the shape and size just right.  I try to come up with all of my own patterns, so it’s often trial and error before I get it right.   And when I finally got it – woo hoo!  I had to put down the needles for a couple of days to let my elbow and wrist recover.   I loved the idea of huge poms on the sides – I think it will be so cute for everyday – as well as professional portraits.   I’ve name it “Starr” – after my older sister – I don’t know why I picked this particular hat for the name.  It just makes me happy, and made me think of her.

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“Autumn” – new

Now….speaking of ‘swimming’ – I decided to remake the “Autumn” design to the left.  I wasn’t happy with the way the roll brim turned out on the original – and well…I just wanted to change it up.  So here is a new Autumn.   This yarn is the thickest I’ve ever seen – and I had to special order the needles for it.  So, this is a one of a kind (size: 0-3 months) – and will be available in other sizes by custom order, but it may take a couple of weeks.   I love the way the texture of the ribbing looks now.   It just felt right to redo it.  Kind of like Dory knew it felt right to go through the trench when Marlin wants to go around.

Sometimes you just need to go with your gut.

https://www.etsy.com/listing/94398367/hand-knit-baby-girl-hat-knit-newborn-0-3?

https://www.etsy.com/listing/162677127/hand-knit-baby-hat-with-pom-poms-knit?ref=listing-shop-header-2

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Can you miss what you never had? {hand knitted baby hats}

One of my greatest sadnesses is life is that I never met two of my older siblings.   David and Starr.   Both were born and passed long before I was even thought of – but I’ve often wondered what my life would have been like if I had those two as a guiding force.   I was lucky enough to have an older sister, though, and I’m so thankful.   I have 5 siblings in total – so I wasn’t lacking for sisters or brothers, but I still miss David and Starr.   Even though I never knew life with them.   I wonder what they would be like, funny like my older sister or artsy like my younger?   Would he be tall like my uncle and have my Grandpa’s great jaw line?  Or would she be petite like my mom and laugh just like her, too?

I wonder.
One of my favorite movies of all time is “Secrets and Lies”.  It’s a British film (I’m a huge fan of British cinema and tv – I long to be Dame Maggie Smith someday).  In this great work (well, I tDSC01229hink it’s great), an infertile couple is having a conversation about someone never knowing their father, and the wife says “You can’t miss what you never had”, but as soon as she says it, she realizes, as her husband does, that yes, you can.  They miss what they never had.  And I do, too.

So, to that point, one of my most popular hats is the one shown to the right – with a pom pom added.  I’ve sold more of these than any other (without the pom) but I now have a photo of it with a pom for added variety.  I’ve also done it in the gnome style, below.   On etsy – and previously on here somewhere, it’s listed as the “Seaside”.   I wasn’t feeling particularly imaginative that day (it’s the name of the yarn color!)   But now I think it should be named “David” in honor of the coolest older brother anyone could ever have had, as I’m sure he would have been.

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Tis the Season for Baby Showers! Hand Knitted baby hats – organic cotton

Ahhh….the longest winter ever finally seems to be over!   The  snow 2 weeks ago is becoming a distant memory, and we are finally able to enjoy spring.  Really enjoy a Real Spring – with mid 70’s and sun and breeze.   I was afraid we would go from being too cold to too hot, wchiphich has happened so many times before.

But, it’s been gorgeous out – time to plant our vegetables, split our perennials, and relish in the sunshine that has eluded us all winter.

It’s also time for baby showers!   People have babies all year round, but why does it seem like there are so many more showers in the summer months?   Perhaps because it’s so nice to have them outside, travel is easy, people are on vacation.   I don’t know – but it’s so exciting to see those growing bellies knowing that soon a little one will be joining our crazy, mixed up world.   Full of hope and promise and new life.

Ruby, pink with white flower

Ruby, pink with white flower

Life has been incredibly busy for me – the end of the school year always is, so I’m reposting a few of my favorite hats.   All are available at my store: http://www.etsy.com/shop/punkinhead1 or use the Store link at the right.   Most hats available are for newborns to 3 months, but custom sizing is always available.   The Chip and Ruby shown are from 100% organic cotton.   The Bobby, shown, is from a super soft acrylic – and is actually modeled by the baby whose mother received it as a gift at her shower!

And as always, any questions, just ask.  I’m here.   Busy, but here!

Happy Spring!222592_10151042068056157_1078814403_n

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Why so cranky?

Have you ever noticed some people are just so cranky?  And have you wondered why?

I was telling a friend today about a very cranky lady at work who just yelled and yelled at me the other day.   For something out of my control.  And when I called her back, to tell her that it would be resolved, to her benefit even, she gave me the silent treatment.  I was killing her with kindness and she was still rude.

And then today we go to process her charge card and it was declined.  My co-worker calls her and is almost apologetic that this has happened, though we are not in the wrong.  The woman does say she’s sorry and gives us a different card number, which is also declined.   Then she sounds annoyed when we have to call her again, though we’d be much happier if we didn’t have to.  Does she think we’re enjoying this?   And guess what – the situation is still not resolved because she hasn’t returned our call.

Which begs the question of why some people are like that.  And what is it that makes them so cranky?  Is there something in their lives they are dealing with that is making them so awful?  Or are they just like that?

Probably a little bit of both.

When my mother-in-law was dying, we were in the middle of a big painting project.   My husband was out of town, and I had to get another gallon of paint from the home improvement store.   Well, they did the wrong formula, which, of course, I didn’t discover until I was at home and started to put it on the walls.   So, on my return trip to the store, I have to admit, I was a bit cranky.   And I’m never cranky to store employees.   Never.  I am usually thanking them for my purchase.  I think a lot of us who work retail are nicer than average.   We know.  We just know what their job is like.

So this outburst was unlike me.  And after I calmed down, I apologized to the clerks, I explained the situation, and I began to cry.  In the middle of the paint department.  No, not one of my finer moments.   Then the dear older clerk came around the counter and gave me a big hug.   Which, of course, caused me to cry even more.   Right next to the paint chips.   Lovely.

My point is …..there was definite stress in my life that was making me so cranky.   This client has had 2 different credit/debit cards declined for the relatively small amount of $25.   There’s gotta be some stress there, don’t you think?

And isn’t it funny that I’d like to think so?  Is it wrong to wish she has something going on to make her so cranky?  Maybe it’s a little wish that she can’t be like that all the time.  Can she?

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