trouble making "an easy peasy hat"
this is my first time on this forum and i am a relatively new knitter. i was knitting scarves up until now and have only just now ventured into the world of hats. i've been working on a hat for my nephew. it's more of an educational experience than anything. first of all, i think two heads could fit into this hat. i thought i had read the pattern correctly, but i guess not. so, that might be my first question. the pattern says, "measure the numbers of stiches per inch and multiply your head measurements in inches by that number". so, i got 4 stiches per inch, and my sister reported that my nephew's head was 22 inches. that would be 88, correct? that's how many stitches i make?
then i moved on to follow the rest of the directions: "knit in the round until hat is 6-7 inches long", "place a stitch marker every 8th stitch", "knit until 2 stitches before marker and k2tog", "continue all the way around for every row". i did fine with all of that, but here comes the second question: "when top of hat is too small to continue decreasing comfortably, you can pull small loops of the cable out in order to keep knitting". what does any of that mean? i'm knitting in the round on circular needles. things are getting difficult and it's gigantic! what did i do wrong? is it a big deal if i didn't use the yarn they suggested and used the needle size that fits the yarn i did use? sorry for the lengthiness of this and the multitude of questions. any helpful suggestions would be much appreciated.