It's coming

play hard ... play hooky


Baby Top Hat - Free Crochet Pattern

Halloween. It's one of my favorite holidays. Not in a dark way, but in an I'm-so-excited-it's-Fall-and-the-holidays-are-about-to-start sort of way. Also, candy.

This year I've been getting some really fun costume requests from my friends. I'm up for a challenge and for making something new so I can't help but say yes.

One of my friends just had a baby and they're doing a Thomas the Train family costume theme. The baby gets to be Sir Toppem Hat, so naturally she needed his namesake accessory. That's where I came in.

I made it up as I went and decided to write it down for you. This is an easily adaptable pattern. Feel free to play with it, make it bigger, smaller, shorter, taller, add a hat band, a flower, or a button... whatever! Just make it yours. Upload it to my Ravelry page so we can all see. And be sure to give it heart so you can find it later.

Yes, that's a lot of single crocheting... but look how cute!

Click the "PRINT FRIENDLY" button at the top of the page to download and print the full pattern. Here's some quick info for you:


  • Worsted weight yarn (10 ply/8 wpi): 1.8 - 2.5 oz
  • US G-6 / 4.00 mm crochet hook

  • Newborn - 12” around
  • Bigger babies - up to 18” around (9-12 months)

play hard ... play hooky


How my neighbor saved my PSL on National Coffee Day (and a sale)

Pumpkin Spice Latte
balancing you on my bike
please don't make me crash

If you don't like good stories with happy endings, you can scroll to the bottom for the sale. But if you need a laugh, hopefully this will deliver...

It's National Coffee Day. A fact I didn't know until after this morning's struggle to imbibe in the delicious brown liquid.

Believe it or not, I've never had a PSL. Until this weekend. I decided it was high time I jumped on the pumpkin-everything bandwagon and see what the hype was about.

And it was gooooood. I even hear Starbucks is using real pumpkin this year (kind of a scary thought that they hadn't been all along, but I'm overlooking that).

This morning, I got a craving for another one. You see how this could become a problem. So I deferred my morning caffeine fix until after taking my son to school when I could make a Starbucks run. 

I got all my kids (including my next door neighbor's daughter) out the door and on our bikes. We ride to school every day, so why should today be any different? That's the moment my story took a turn, but I wouldn't realize it for another 30 minutes or so.

We had a fun ride to school and played before the bell. I put my girls back in the bike trailer and rode to Safeway. As I stepped up to the Starbucks counter it slowly dawned on me that my sole means of getting home is bike. My BIKE. There are no cupholders on my bike.

Sure, at this point I could have admitted defeat and ridden back home empty handed. But I'm no quitter. You should also know that I'm not exactly an expert cyclist. Riding the half-mile back to my house with one hand on my handlebars and one hand grasping my PSL was a pretty daunting idea.

Ultimately, my need for coffee overrode any sense of impending personal injury from a crash, including hot coffee burns on my hand. I walked out of the store with my baby on my hip and my latte in my hand.

As I was buckling my girls back into the trailer, my neighbor (another one, he lives a few doors down) walked past, said "Good morning" and asked how we were.

Normally I wouldn't have mentioned my turbulent inner struggle, but it was pretty obvious that I was battling to balance everything. Here's how the conversation went:

"Oh hey Ryan, nice morning, huh? I'm just trying to figure out how to get my coffee back home in one piece. I probably should've skipped it this morning."

"Oh, that's NEVER the answer" (he gets me). "Here, take this. It's a little rough on the bumps, but it'll do the job."

He then went to his bike (can you tell we loves bikes in this town?), took off a metal ring that was innocuously attached to his handlebars, and clamped it down on mine. Perfection!!! My coffee has a place all its own.

He was right. It was a little rough on the bumps, but we all made it home. No crash. No burns. Just fall-flavored awesomeness. I gotta get me one of those metal things.

See how that works? When you choose coffee over almost-certain bodily harm, good things happen. Because... coffee.

Speaking of... let's celebrate National Coffee Day with more ways to keep the caffeine flowing. For the rest of the day only, all my Coffee Cozy patterns are only $0.99 in my Ravelry shop. (In fact, the one pictured in the middle is FREE)

play hard ... play hooky