what to look for in outdoor gear for kids.


We are a very outdoor family, it’s just in our blood. Part of it is that Victor and I both grew up loving the outdoors, and the other part is that our kids just can’t be contained, they love to be outside as much as we do. P had her own climbing harness before she could walk and we took her camping when she was only a few months old. We are outside all year long doing whatever is in season: skiing, biking, camping, mountain climbing, you name it.

I discovered early on however, that there is a serious lack of appropriate outdoor equipment for little kids. A perfect example is when P started mountain climbing {at the tender age of one} and I couldn’t find shoes small enough for her. I ended up using water shoes {the ones with the rubber grippy soles} which worked fine, but I was frustrated that no one made shoes that small. The next hurdle came when we wanted to go camping but there weren’t sleeping bags small enough for her. I searched high and low to no avail, until my in-laws came to the rescue and sent us small sleeping bags all the >> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

Basic Baby Hat – Pattern and Tutorial

When I started knitting my first hat, I couldn’t stop. As I saw the head taking shape I was amazed that my hands could actually do that. This is a very basic and simple pattern for a small hat. I usually have one on my needles and am building a good stash of them so I have something on hand to give out to my friends that are having babies. They are always well received.

I will add a printable PDF of the pattern by the end of the week. I will also add a similar pattern for an adult size as well. Please email me with any questions you may have while knitting this hat. lori (dot) vanwagoner (at) gmail (dot) com


SIZE
Instructions are written for 0 – 6 months depending on the size of your kid’s noggin

KNITTED MEASUREMENTS
Head circumference 16 ½ “ – 18” (finished measurements vary depending on yarns stretchiness)

MATERIALS
1 50g ball (approx 135 yards – you will use just over ½ of this ball) cotton or wool yarn that knits to standard DK tension.
One pair size US 4 double point needles
One pair size US 4 16” circular needles
11 … >> find out more...

Lori

Supermarket flower upgrades

I absolutely love fresh flowers in my home. Love.  Just one simple vase full can make a positive and dramatic impact.  They are a luxury I rarely afford myself, and that my darling B used to indulge. (Sweetie, hint hint). As part of my New Year’s Resolutions, I recently grabbed a bunch of hot-pink alstroemeria at the supermarket and I’ve been so happy with them!  Particularly for the gloom of winter blues, fresh flowers are the perfect tonic. And with a few strategies, even the $6 bunches from your local grocery store can be stunning. Check out this how-to from Real Simple.  So, go ahead. Spend $6 on yourself for some flowers this month. 

A few other pointers:
  • Always cut your stems to suit your vase so that the blossoms take center stage, not the stems. 
  • Most bang for your buck: Alstroemeria (choose the most vivid color available) and carnations are cheap, so you can double your splurge for a big arrangement. Bonus: they are long lasting.
  • For something unique, combine a greenery bunch with a berry bunch. Very charming, I promise. 
>> find out more...

Kimberly

...by day, making a home where the buffalo roam. By night, pretty much the same thing, punctuated by the occasional fantasies of sunny beaches, italian movies and sparkling lemonade.

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founder & editors.

Founder & Editor: Allison


I’m Allison Czarnecki the founder and editor who started all this Petit Elefant business. I’m married to Michal {a very Polish immigrant} and I have two beautiful children, my daughter P {age 9} and my son C {age 4}. I stay at home with my two kids in Utah while I run Petit Elefant, in addition to a bit of freelance writing in my spare time {not much of that around here}. 99.9% of the time I love being a mom, and the rest of the time I fake it.
I’m a complete mixture of spa girl & granola girl; I’m equally happy getting a pedicure & camping in the mountains. I absolutely adore all things clean, simple, homemade, & Martha Stewart even though I’m a long way off from being her protogé.

This site is meant to help you-the modern parent-navigate the world of parenting through product recommendations, recipes, book reviews, craft ideas, play tips, tutorials, & giveaways. The best tips & tricks of parenting I know have either been gained from years of hard work in the trenches or from friends who paved the way before me. Petit Elefant is here to share >> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

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daily blog reads.

I have several blogs in my Netvibes reader, too many to share really, but even when I’m pressed for time there are a few that can’t be missed.

Confessions of a Pioneer Woman {she’s so real, and I love her for it}
Design Mom {not only does she inspiring me {FIVE kids!!} she has amazing ideas}
This Week For Dinner {most of my weekly menus come from her site}
The Bloggess {we share a similar {twisted} sense of humor and I’m never sorry for reading}

What are the rest of you reading? What are your never-miss blog stops? Please share, I love finding new blogs!

>> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

Baby Legwarmers – Pattern and Tutorial

Let’s get knitting. First we’ll start out with the easiest project – the legwarmers. Basically, we’re knitting a rectangle and then sewing up the back to make a tube. Easy peasy. I will add a printable PDF of the pattern within the next few days. If you’d like to see the pictures a little larger, please visit my flickr account.

SIZE
Instructions are written for 6 months (fit from below ankle to above knee) – 2 years (fit from below ankle to below knee).

KNITTED MEASUREMENTS
9” from top to bottom.

MATERIALS
1 50g ball (approx 135 yards – you will use less than ½ of this ball) cotton or wool yarn that knits to standard DK tension.
One pair size US 5 needles
One pair size US 4 needles
Yarn needle

PROJECT LENGTH
Approx 3-5 hours depending on your knitting speed

KNITTING INSTRUCTIONS
Using size 4 needles, cast on 34 stitches with contrasting color (CC)

Rows 1 – 8 K1, p1*; rep from * to end
(Notes: You do not need to use double point needles -dpns- on this project. I prefer them because it is a small project and I like the feel of the shorter
>> find out more...

Lori

how to: start knitting.

Now that the holidays are over and life is slowing down, it is time to sit and relax and learn something new. First let me introduce myself. I’m Lori Van Wagoner. I’ve been asked to share a few basic knitting techniques and patterns with you Petit Elefant readers and I am very excited to do so. I’ve been knitting for about four years. I am by no means an expert, but I know enough to teach you the basics and provide some patterns for quick projects that will knock the socks off your friends and family.

If you have never knit before, here are a list of links to videos that will help you get started. There are thousands of online knitting tutorials available. If you need more instruction just browse YouTube for awhile.

Casting on (getting the yarn on your needles):
Long-tail Cast on Demo 1
Long-tail Cast on Method Demo 2
Long-tail Cast on Method Demo 3

The Basic Knit Stitch:
Knit Stitch Demo 1
Knit Stitch Demo 2

The Purl Stitch:
Purling Demo

Binding Off (Getting your stitches off of the needles):
Binding Off Demo

All Four Steps in One:
Basic Knitting Demo

Because I am … >> find out more...

Lori

Calendars

As I prepared to organize my life today, I realized in a panic I don’t have a 2009 calendar. Nothing, save post-it-notes, on which to record all the myriad obligations, appointments, special dates, and menu plans for the coming weeks, months and year.  So I did a little window shopping for a pretty new calendar. 

>> find out more...

Kimberly

...by day, making a home where the buffalo roam. By night, pretty much the same thing, punctuated by the occasional fantasies of sunny beaches, italian movies and sparkling lemonade.

happy new year!


Happy New Year everyone! Hope your celebrations last night left you satisfied, happy, entertained, and safely home in bed. Here’s to a wonderful, new, and exciting 2009!

{fantastic image found here}.

>> find out more...

Michal

This is Michal's profile description. This is were Michal tells you how awesome and wonderful he is. He's just one cool cat.

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