Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween! Free Crochet Pumpkin Hat Pattern

So, today is one of my least favorite holidays. Now, don't get me wrong, I love all the candy and everything, but when I was in the 7th grade, I spent my Halloween getting fitted for a back brace. That kind of threw a shadow over the whole holiday for me, and it didn't help that I was never all that fond of dressing up in the first place.

Elijah takes after me in that respect - he does not like to dress up! I have made him tons of cute hats of his favorite characters, and he always pulls them off before I can even really get them on him. Oh well, I can't really blame him...I'm not a hat person either - love making them, hate wearing them. :)

I have a feeling that his aversion to dressing up will change soon, and I am fully aware that this is probably the last year that I will be able to get away with doing nothing for Halloween. Well, we're not doing nothing exactly. I have a plastic pumpkin for Elijah to paint tonight, and my husband is DJing at our church's Harvest Party. I thought about taking Elijah to the party for about half a second...then I thought about him rushing the stage screaming "Dada! Elijah song! Elijah do! No, Dada! Elijah play!"...and the mass amounts of kids that will be taking over our church, and Elijah not listening or staying close...and I decided "no thanks!".

Shameless plug - here's one of my husband's techno songs that he is playing tonight. Check him out Shintek9 on YouTube.

However, I felt I should do a little something for Halloween here on the blog. So, here is a pattern for a little pumpkin hat that I crocheted up a couple of years ago for a friend, but never wrote the pattern down. The pattern here is sized for 6-18 months. To change size, simply increase or decrease the number of stitches in the MC and the number of rounds you crochet.

Here are six patterns to help you resize this hat if you need to.

  • I hook
  • Green, Orange and Brown Yarn - I used Vicki Howell's Sheep(ish) in Pumpkin(ish) (about a 3/4 skein), Chartreuse(ish) and Espresso (ish) (in very small amounts)
With Orange
Round 1: In magic circle, 12dc, join to first dc (do not pull magic circle closed very tightly, we will be putting the stem in through the top circle first.

Round 2: ch 2 (counts as stitch throughout), dc in same stitch, 2dc in every stitch (24 stitches), join to beginning ch

Round 3: ch 2, dc in same stitch, *dc in next stitch, 2dc in following stitch, repeat from * (36 stitches), join

Round 4: ch 2, dc in same stitch, *dc in next 2 stitches, 2dc in following stitch, repeat from * (48 stitches), join

Round 5-13: ch 2, dc in each stitch (48 stitches), join and change colors. Fasten off and weave in ends.

Leaves: (Make 2)
With Green
I used the "Scalloped Edge Leaf" from Crochet Bouquet, but here is a similar free leaf pattern that would work equally as well - Crochet Fall Leaf from Crochet Jewel.

With Green
Row 1: Ch. 23, 3 dc in 4th ch from hook, 3 dc in each ch across. Fasten off, weave in ends and twist into shape.

Sew the Curly-Q to the underside of one of the leaves. Sew the leaves to the hat.

With Brown
Ch 10

Row 1: sc in 2nd ch from hook, sc across (9 stitches), ch 1, turn.

Row 2-5: sc across, ch 1, turn

Row 6: sl st the top of bottom of the stem together. Fasten off and weave in ends, using one of the ends to tie the top together. Insert step into the hole at the top of the hat, pull the MC closed and sew to secure.
Note: Because this pattern contains a link to a pattern that is not my own, please use this pattern for personal use only. If you use your own leaf pattern, you may sell the finished product.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

I'm back...and I'm tired!

Whew! That was quite the whirlwind of a trip.

I left home at 12:30 PST on Wednesday to catch my 3:30 flight. I slept all of 20 minutes on the flight, and had a huge headache most of the time. The landing was a little rough, and one of the panels that hold the oxygen masks actually fell off when the wheels hit the ground. Scared the crap out of most of us. I arrived at Charles De Gaulle airport at 11am French time (2am PST), went through passport control and met my friend, Gaelle. We went to her apartment, picked up her fiancĂ©, Adrien, and went out to lunch. We had delicious crepes and then went shopping so I could buy a few souvenirs. We made it to Gaelle's parents house around 4pm (7am PST), made a cake out of candy for the wedding, and then I headed to bed at 7 (10am PST).

Day 1 Sleep Count - 20 minutes in 24 hours

The Candy "Cake"

I woke up around 11pm (4pm PST), stayed awake for about an hour, and then fell back asleep until 4am (7pm PST). I watched videos, got on Facebook, and read a book. I finally got out of bed, dressed and went downstairs at 9am (Midnight PST). Around 11am (2am PST), I took a two hour nap. At 1pm (4am), we went to the reception hall to decorate. We worked until 10pm (1pm PST), went home, had dinner, did manicures and finally went to bed around 1am (4pm PST). I slept until 5am (8pm PST), woke up for around 3 hours, and then went back to bed until 12:30pm (3:30 am). Then it was off to the wedding.

Day 2 Sleep Count - 9 hours over an 18 hour period

The Reception Hall and Decorations

The wedding started at the town hall in Massy, where Gaelle and Adrien were married by a representative of the city. Then it moved to the Basilica in Longpont-sur-Orge where they were married by a Catholic Priest. Then after a long time of taking pictures in front of the Basilica (which all the guests stayed for), the party moved to the reception hall near Arpajon. I had no watch or phone at this point, so I really have no idea what time these things happened at. We had the cocktail hour for two hours, and the dinner lasted until around midnight. We would be served a course, and then a game of some kind would be played. The next course, and then a slideshow. The next and another game...and so on and so forth. After dessert was served, the dancing started. The French seem to have a choreographed dance to every song. My favorite part of the night was the Gangnam Style conga line. My brain simply could not compute the French people + the Korean song + the Cuban Conga line, but it was hugely entertaining. Around 2am (5pm PST), people turned their clocks back because it was the end of Daylight Savings in France. I left the reception around 3am (7pm PST - France was now only 8 hours ahead of us). I got back the house, packed and finally fell asleep around 4:30am (8:30pm PST). I woke up at 7:30am (11:30pm PST) to be ready for my 8am (Midnight PST) taxi to the airport.

Day 3 Sleep Count - 3 hours

The area just outside of Paris where I spent my entire trip.
I never once set foot inside the city limits of Paris, but I saw the Eiffel Tower from the freeway.

My flight left France at 11am (3am PST). I slept for about two hours total on the plane, and landed in Seattle just after 1:00pm (9pm in France). The flight was uneventful, we got a great clear view of northern Greenland, and arrived a half hour early. My favorite part was the pilot announcing that we were arriving early and that we should "remember this the next time we're late". It felt like it took forever to get through passport control and customs, and I was finally reunited with my husband and son at 2:00. We spent the rest of the day making a quick visit to a birthday party, grabbing dinner, I took a 20 minute nap to help get me through the rest of the evening, and I ended up going to bed at midnight (8am in France).

Day 4 Sleep Count - 2 hours and 20 minutes in 24 hours.

The Yoda Hat I made for my friend son's Halloween costume.
I had lots of time on my flight to work on it.
So from 9:00am on Wednesday morning until Midnight on Monday morning, I slept a total of 14 hours and 40 minutes over a period of 135 hours. So like I, I'm tired!

I've been trying to recover, but I'm all kinds of messed up time wise. Eventually I will get back on track...and then the time will change on Sunday night...awesome!

I'm happy to be back, but I feel like my to-do list is a mile long...getting caught up on work stuff, house stuff, and general life stuff. I need a vacation after my vacation...but isn't that how it always is? :)

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Getting Ready...France here I come!

When I was 16, I took a two week trip to France with a group of other students and our French teacher. We had lots of fun the first week - visiting Paris, traveling to Rouen, Honfleur, St. Malo and Tours, hanging out, goofing off, and generally making our teacher think we were drunk the entire time. (We weren't, I promise...well, most of us weren't...there was this one instance with one of the guys who forgot the "only one glass of wine with dinner" rule, and we all worked together remarkably well to hide that situation from our teacher.) The second week we were there, we were each placed in a homestay. That is how I came to meet Gaelle, Guillaume, Kristine and Michel - my French family. I enjoyed staying with the immensely, and have since gone back to visit once for a week and once for a day (side trip from London). Gaelle stayed with us for a week and a half right after my husband and I got back from our honeymoon, and we most recently visited her, Guillaume and Gaelle's fiancĂ©, Adrien, down in LA at the end of their Canada/US road trip.

At this time tomorrow, I will be beginning my first solo trip since I have been married to go witness the marriage of Gaelle and Adrien about 20 minutes outside of Paris. I am so looking forward to it!

Before I could go though, I had about a gazillion things to take care of. First, there will be one birthday party while I'm gone, and one that begins almost the minute I will step off the plane when I get home. We are going to try to stop by (mostly to keep me from falling asleep), so I have to have gifts done.

The first gift is for Wyatt, whose 2nd birthday I will miss, but who will probably be at the second birthday party. I went with a simple monster themed gift - monster pajamas, a little monster stuffed toy, and a crocheted beanie hat with horns. I got the horn pattern here.

The second gift is for Darren, who will be celebrating his 1st birthday the day I get back. For his gift, I went with a football theme - football/sport pajamas, a little soft football toy, and a crocheted football helmet hat. I got the pattern for the hat here, but had to do some adjusting to make it a little bigger than 0-6 months. Mostly, I just made the earflap circle bigger, and made more rows, while trying to keep the size ratios the same. I like how it turned out.

 While I'm on the first 10.5 hour flight (ugh), I have plans to make two of my textured infinity scarves - one for Gaelle and one for her mom. I also made them two simple little bracelets with Space Needle charms, and included a couple of recent family pictures in their gifts. I haven't gotten anything for the guys yet, but I'm thinking a little Seahawks something or other - you know, introduce them to American football :)

At this point, other than finish packing all the stuff I will still need to use tomorrow before I leave, I'm just waiting for Gaelle and Adrien's wedding gift (a Waterford "Our First Christmas" ornament) to arrive - fingers crossed on it showing up today!

Now, I'm off to spend the rest of naptime relaxing before my dad shows up to take us all out to dinner for James' birthday (which was 2 weeks ago). Yay for not having to cook!

So, until I return next week - Au revoir!

**UPDATE: Apparently, by relaxing, I meant hurriedly cleaning the house and taking pictures so I can show my French family. And by cleaning, I mean moving things out of sight of the camera lens :) On the plus side, the wedding gift arrived - hurray! Now, I can relax!**

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Free Crochet Hooded Infinity Scarf Pattern

I'm celebrating two things by offering this free pattern.

First, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. In honor of my biological maternal grandmother, Judy, who died of breast cancer in October of 1997, I made this scarf pink. My grandma Judy was a fun lady. I didn't know her very well, as she never lived close - she was either in Nebraska or Alaska - but she often stayed with us on her layovers through SeaTac Airport. She had a great sense of humor, and was always laughing. When she was diagnosed with breast cancer, and lost her hair due to chemotherapy, she hated people pitying her. She wanted people to continue to tease and joke around with her. I fondly remember stories of Judy's antics while on a bowling team - when she would get a strike, she would take off her wig and toss it in the air to celebrate, and when she missed, she would pulled it off and toss it on the ground. I can just imagine the shock the people around her must have felt, and it still makes me smile to think about. That was the kind of woman my grandma was, and this scarf pattern is dedicated to her...although, she would have probably hated that it's pink :)

Second, my little blog here has had over 10,000 views (it's actually closer to 10,500 now), which I find amazing. I never expected to get 1000, let alone 10x that amount. So this scarf pattern is also dedicated to those of you who have stopped by The Sequin Turtle and helped me reach that number.

This scarf is perfect for the weather here in Western Washington. As you may or may not know, it rains quite a bit here. For the most part, it is a weak, misty kind of rain that barely gets you wet. Because of this, Western Washingtonians do not carry umbrellas. In fact, the only times I've ever owned an umbrella were during my trip to Costa Rica, and a cute patterned one to match some equally cute rain boots that were bought for my maternity photo shoot because it ended up being a rainy, yucky day. You can see the pictures here if you're interested. Since we don't use umbrellas here, we are rather attached to hoods - hooded sweatshirts, hooded jackets, and my newest favorite - hooded scarves.

So here is it, my Crochet Hooded Infinity Scarf Pattern. Please excuse the poor picture quality. The scarf is also available for purchase in my etsy shop.

3 skeins bulky weight yarn - I used Charisma in Think Pink from Michael's.
Q hook
yarn needle

Ch 90, join with a sl st to the first ch to create a loop, being careful not to twist the chain, ch 1

Round 1 - In the same stitch as the sl st, 2dc, *skip 2 ch, 1sc and 2dc in the next ch. Repeat from * 28 more times, join with a sl st in the beginning ch, ch 1 (30 clusters)

Round 2 - In the same stitch as the sl st, 2dc, *skip 2 dc, 1sc and 2dc in the next sc. Repeat from * 28 more times, join with a sl st in the beginning ch, ch 1 (30 clusters)

Round 3-12 - Repeat round 2.

Round 13 - Sc in each stitch around (90 stitches), fasten off and weave in ends.

Round 14 - To create the hood, fold the scarf in half lengthwise, attach yarn to the top of the fold and sl st a 7" seam down the beginning chain side. After 7 inches, continue along one side only of the scarf and sc around, working 3 stitches for every cluster, and then sl st back up the hood seam to reinforce it. Fasten off and weave in ends.

To wear, put the hood on first with the scarf hanging down the front of your body, twist the scarf once and put it around your neck a second time. Adjust the scarf to your liking.

Now, if you ever come to Seattle, you can avoid looking like a tourist (the umbrella is a dead giveaway) and just wear your hooded scarf! Your head will stay dry, your neck will stay warm, and you'll look cute...much better than an umbrella, huh?

Friday, October 11, 2013

Crochet Soccer Ball Hat

My friend, Meg, asked if I could figure out how to make a soccer ball hat for her 2 year old son. Sure! I'm always up for a challenge!

Here's what I came up with - it's 6 pentagons, 5 hexagons, and 5 half hexagons sewn together into a soccer ball, with a black double crochet band, ear flaps and braided ties added. I love how it turned out, and I can't wait to see it on Meg's little boy! I'm looking forward to delivering it tomorrow.

I do not plan on listing this hat in my shop, but you can purchase a custom hat gift certificate and order one of your very own if you want.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013


Wow - as of this morning, my little blog here has had over 10,000 views. That's awesome! Thanks for stopping by my little corner of the world wide web! I hope you've enjoyed your visit!

To celebrate, I will be adding a new free pattern later this week, so be sure to come back and check it out!

Sunday, October 6, 2013


First and foremost, my thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of the JBLM soldier who was killed a few miles from my house today. May the Lord comfort you and bring you peace during this time of sorrow and grief.

Today, my husband and I spent most of the day watching football. While watching, I thought a lot about the things I like to see when watching football, and the things I don't like. I was also doing some crocheting, but that's a story for another time...

Here are some of the things I like most in football...
  • I like watching someone sack a quarterback, and then help him back to his feet.
  • I like players who take a knee for the entire time an injured player is on the ground. Bonus points if they are obviously praying.
  • I like touchdown dances...I especially like them when they are done after a defensive line touchdown - you know, the big guy up front somehow gets the ball and runs like mad to reach the end-zone...there is always so much joy in their dances.
And some of the things I dislike most in football...
  • I dislike fans who turn on their teams just because of a loss, especially to the point of burning a quarterback's jersey after a hard fought game. Highly uncalled for.
  • I dislike no-calls and/or bad calls by officials who always seem to be against the Hawks.
  • I dislike how commentators tend to focus on what a team did wrong during a play, rather than what the other team did right during that same play.
If Elijah follows in his dad's footsteps and wants to play football, I hope he learns kindness and respect in spite of competitiveness. I hope he learns to separate his feelings of competitiveness from his feelings about the players on the other team. I hope he learns to support his team through both wins and losses, and most importantly, I hope he learns to love the game and have fun.

As a mom, I'm not particularly looking forward to the day that my kid comes up to me and asks if he can play football. I've seen too many injuries from the sidelines to not be worried, but if and when that day comes, he will have my blessing. Of course, if that day never comes, I will do my own little internal touchdown dance.

The games I cared about today did not turn out the way I would have liked - I'm proud of the way the Hawks played, and it was a great game, but a win would have been awesome. A nice 49er stomping by the Texans would also have been appreciated, but it wasn't meant to be tonight. However, there's always next week...see you soon at the Clink, Titans...don't forget your earplugs :)

Friday, October 4, 2013

Time to get cozy!

Our weather here in Western Washington was all kinds of bi-polar last week...sunny and beautiful one minute, puking rain the next. It was crazy, but some how I managed to avoid being outside during any of the sudden downpours. It truly feels like fall is settling into the area now.

My pastor has a saying when it comes to our weather here: You can get cozy, or you can get depressed. It's pretty true in this area, where it will be dark and grey pretty much until at least April, and sometimes even as late as June. Even though it's mostly wet and yucky here, I love fall. I love the excuse to stay inside, drink hot tea, read stacks of books and snuggle into soft blankets. I love sweaters, and scarves, and boots. I love the rain and the wind. The only things I don't like are all the pumpkin flavored things - ick - and the fact that it gets dark so early.

So, as fall descends around me, my mind turns to my yarn stash and crochet hook. What to make this year? Here are some of the things I'm thinking about making this month.

A soccer ball hat
A breast cancer awareness scarf
A boyish bonnet style hat for my kid who will not wear hats, but LOVES hoods!

And now, while I would love to go get cozy and get started on those projects, I really have to grade this stack of papers sitting next to me.

I'm looking forward to the weekend, and I hope you are, too.