Everett's mama has discussed Christmas traditions before, and liked the idea of the annual Christmas hat. She first considered knit socks, but remembered that the only teenagers rocking a pair of homemade socks in high school were the eccentric cool kids with high self-esteem. Not knowing the personality of little E led her back to the safer hat option.
With the mama-to-be short on time and energy, I went ahead and made this year's hat for Everett this past weekend during a trip to the Grand Canyon via the Grand Canyon Railway. My mom set the whole trip up, and give a lot of credit to the folks at the GCR for all the details they have worked out in planning trips through them.
We did the full package -- with all meals included, hotel stay for 2 nights in Williams, Arizona, and a bus tour at the Grand Canyon after taking the 2 1/2 or so hour train trip over to the park. Everybody was so super nice -- the cutest thing was having all the staff from the GCR restaurant come out in the morning when we left and in the evening when we came home to wave at the train. They even held up signs in the a.m. that they hoped everybody would have a great day.
I hadn't seen the Grand Canyon since I was a wee one. Such an awe-inspiring view! Looking at its vastness pushes out all the little niggling thoughts about to dos and should have dones that plague the minds of women in particular, and one can just sit there an soak in all the beauty. Hank was equally inspired -- for a much shorter period of time, though. Then he started asking questions about what would happen if he fell in, and if he could roll up in a ball and make it to the bottom without getting hurt, etc. Thankfully the bus tour stops were short, and we could haul him away from the edge before he decided to practice some maneuver he saw in Oscar's Oasis or something.
If you do go on the GCR, I would recommend going first class on the train (excellent service, plus snacks!) and the bus tour (with or without lunch included) is pretty good option at the park, as you only have about 3 hours there before you need to be back on the train. Otherwise you need to wait at the shuttle stops to get to your intended destination, and there is the potential for getting stranded too far away to get back in time. You'll feel like you are a Septuagenarian on the bus based on your fellow travellers, but nice to not have to think about transportation and just focus on that lovely view. The meals at the hotel are -- ok. Definitely a lot more fun eating options in Williams all within walking distance that you could try out instead. Williams is the quintessential Route 66 town that is still flourishing due to the train tourist traffic. There are other hotels, too, so if the GCR hotel doesn't fit in your budget, there are other options. GCR is also a railroad that does a Polar Express themed route November through early January. Really fun for the kids, but note that this route does not go to the Grand Canyon.
Anyway, this was my first Ravelry pattern -- the Aviatrix. I thought it would take me all weekend, and would be a good train activity. Didn't account for how l o n g of a drive it was from Long Beach to Williams, so ended up finishing it up on the way there. Maybe there will be time to make some socks, too, after all. Can't wait to meet baby Everett!
Favorite of the day: Cute classroom
Working on: Birthday prep