thankfully the decreasing was simple, it was k2tog which i have come know means "knit two together". very simple really. so following my pattern i decreased as required. the DPs seemed ridiculous when dealing with less than 12 stitches but then i finally got to the brown stem. that was pretty easy as well thankfully.
the catch was making those little green leaves, i had no idea how to make the increases they were talking about. thankfully Rachel had the book Stitch 'n Bitch which i borrowed and it had good clear instructions on increasing. still had to do the leaves 3 times before i had one that i liked but with that little wool being used each time i could afford to be picky.
the end result was quite good.
look ma my first hat!