When my children were little, I had “love” nicknames for each of them; my daughter was Apple Dumplin’ and my son was Pumpkin Pie. I am not sure how this came about and because I was a silly mom, I would sometimes “accidentally” mix them up and call one Apple Pie or Pumpkin Dumplin’, only to be corrected. Oh how my son loved to correct me! What’s even funnier is that pumpkin pie is my son’s absolute favorite and my daughter is very fond of apple dumplings. It’s similar to the chicken and egg issue, and I don’t remember if they got their nicknames because of their fondness for that particular dessert or if their fondness developed after they were called their nickname a million times. I probably am still a silly mom, but with a teenager and one who emulates everything his older sister does, my antics are usually met with more eye rolling than giggles. Every so often, I can hit the right amount of silliness with humor and cause both to crack up despite their best attempts to feign that “Mom is not that funny and we are just too cool”.
I had similar issues with making these hats as I do with making my children laugh. At first, I didn’t like the yarn as it was pretty rough, even for the Red Heart brand. I was able to make 8 hats in various sizes to fit the different sized babies in the NICU. Some were made on the newborn round loom and some were made on the scarf loom, using 16 or 18 and sometimes 20 peg. All hats have a brim that is flexible (with 1 row of e-wrap and 1 row of purl for 3 or 4 rows), and then e-wrapped to the top. I have read on Pinterest that you can wash the yarn and put it in the dryer to soften the feel of it. After the hats were made, I put them in a lingerie bag and laundered them with laundry soap and fabric softener. Once they came out, they were softer, leaving me with mixed emotions. On one hand, I was happy the hat did not fall completely apart, which was a legitimate fear for someone who has never washed her creations; and on the other hand, the hat brims has a tendency to roll after being washed even though it is garter stitched. It felt almost like when the kids don’t roll their eyes at my attempts of humor, but don’t really laugh.
I made 8 stems with brown yarn on the Knifty Knitter Spool Loom and crocheted 8 leaves out of green yarn, using this pattern. Once I attached the brown stem and green leaf on the pretty soft red apple, I felt like it was all worth it; I felt Accomplished! It was almost as good as when both kids are laughing with my husband and me; then hours later, we think about it and crack up all over again.
I hope these hats will bring joy and laughter to itty-bitty apple dumplin’s and their families.