Sunday, December 31, 2006

No surgeries in 2007!!!

That is #1 on my New Year's Resolutions. I realize, of course, that I have no real control over this, but a girl can dream.
Here's the rest.

Start designing knitwear for the masses, including multiple sizes.
Not buy more yarn until my stash is officially busted. (This will be the hardest to keep)
Stop drinking so damn many sodas.
Try smiling a little more so people won't think I'm going to eat their babies.
Start (and stay in) a playgroup. (Actually, THIS might be the hardest to keep)
Go off all my meds.

I think these are realistic goals for the coming year. Last year pretty much sucked, starting with the gall bladder surgery the first week, followed by the diagnosis of both high cholesterol and bipolar disorder. Yippee! Then came the grueling 6 month process of moving out of state, leaving behind my friends and family for greener pastures.
Let's hope this year is better. I'm hopeful.

Who knows? Maybe this year we'll see an end to this stupid war. Maybe that's too hopeful.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Post Holiday Wrap-up

This was our first Christmas without our extended family, and it was actually quite fun. Perrin was very excited about Santa bringing presents and tore into them like, well, a kid on Christmas.
Here are a few highlights.
Dancing with Pablo (from Grandpa and Nana)

Feeding his furby (from Grandma and Papa)

And a quickie shot of the relieved parents at the end of the day

I hope everyone had as wonderful and relaxing holiday as we had. Love to all.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Total Tubey Transformation

Tubey has bit the dust. I finished it 5 months ago (or so) and have never worn it. The fit is all wrong, and despite a half-assed attempt at frogging and redoing most of the body, it still looks craptacular on me. So, I will be turning my poor tubey into this gorgeous cardigan. That's right, Helen. I'm going to seam!!!! Wish me luck. I may give myself a brain aneurysm sewing this up, but if it turns out as lovely as the picture, I'll be wrapping myself in cashmere goodness for the rest of the winter.

In other news, the plague is still swimming around in my boys' bodies. Perrin had a little two day bug, and John has strep throat following a week of the flu. Girlies, if you thought it was tough dealing with a sick hubby, try nursing TWO boys back to health. Whining, whining, and more whining. But I love 'em; I even baked them oatmeal raising cookies. Now who rocks?

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

It's a good life if you don't weaken

Here's an adorable pic of my kiddo modeling his new mama-made sweater. Just yer basic raglan (which I'm sort of the queen of now) with a couple of small cables down the front. This took me about 6 days to knit up, and he kinda hates it. Oh well. He let me put it on him long enough to take this picture. I used the yarn left over from Brian's DNA sweater. I am now deconstructing tubey up to the boobs and knitting it in stockinette for the rest of the body. Allover ribbing just isn't flattering on anyone with tummy rolls. I'm also adding some increases to give it a little bit of flair at the bottom. May do a hem at bottom or just let it roll up.

Oh, and in case it wasn't totally obvious that my hubby and I are uber-liberals, here's the shirt I bought him for his birthday.

Monday, December 11, 2006

A not purple FO and a very somber Christmas

My latest sweater. I heart it so much, I could live in it.
Yarn: 4 skeins Cascade 220 some green heather
Pattern: regular raglan with cable from "Cables Untangled" (can't remember author)
I did no ribbing on the neckline, cuz that drives me bonkers, and I did an extra long ribbing on the sleeves. I actually may go back and add another inch to the sleeves tonight.

Oh, and check out this spirited holiday pic. We were doing a little Christmas photo shoot for the fam, and whilst waiting for John to tinker with the self-timer thingy on the camera, he accidentally caught this shot of me and Perrin looking ever so thrilled. Said in a monotone, Ben Stein voice, "Merry Christmas, everybody."

Tuesday, December 05, 2006


Ah, the 5 day suckfest that has been the flu. It started the day it snowed, so I haven't been outside to bask in its freezing splendor. The only cure for the flu seems to be zombie-esque lounging in bed and watching the entire 5th season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I was so sick in fact, that I was too weak and shaky to knit, so not much progress on my beautiful sweater. I will probably have pics in a day or so of the gorgeous cable panel. Off to mope in my virus. Stay well.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Random silliness and the now unterrible twos

We have now entered a realm of bliss where time-outs actually work and the kiddo has become a total delight. Perrin is now madly in love with his father, and the two of them spend hours every evening running around playing together. It warms my cockles to see them become so close. John is a terrific dad; the kind that wrestles in the floor and comforts his son when he's upset. I'm so happy I could burst.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

It's my birthday. Shake my booty.

I could get all sentimental and philosophical about the significance of this birthday, but I won't. I will simply say that today I am 29, and it's weird and wonderful and whatever. I had some deep dish cheese pizza and am now devouring some Ben and Jerry's. It's a good thing. But I've made a pact with the universe that I shall not age another year.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Thanks a million

Thanksgiving is my all-time favorite holiday. What other day lets you gorge until you can no longer function, nap unabashedly with your pants unbuttoned, and hang out with cool families like mine? Did I mention the complete lack of religious awkwardness or mandatory gift-giving? Thanksgiving ROCKS!
I also like to reflect on the past year and make a mental note of the things for which I am very, very thankful. Like to hear it? Here it goes.

First and foremost, for my boys. Some days I'd rather shave my legs with a chainsaw than breathe in the fumes of the testosterone, but most I am swimming in bliss
Green tea fraps from Starbucks. Yeah, they're worth the $4 and pretentious punks I have to encounter to buy these
Cashmere yarn. Need I say more on this one?
My size 8 Addi Turbos. The yarn flies off these babies with no snags and no tears. I heart me some addis.
Downers Grove, Illinois. It's my Stars Hollow, my pie in the sky, my secret garden. I have never felt more at home than I do here. And I never thought I could say that about a suburb.
Crestor. Seems silly to thank a little pill, but without it, I may not have lived to see this day.
Monday night chats with my girls. Mom, Jen, Aunt Debbie, and Grandma. I am surrounded by a wealth of strong, warm, brave, and loving women who have shaped who I am and who I aim to become.

The universe has blessed me beyond all reason. I am not special. I am part of you and you are part of me. I am thankful for one more year to realize the joys of this life.

Monday, November 20, 2006


Christmas gifts are almost completed. I have another hat for my stepbrother, and a couple of bracelets for my sisters.

Kitty hat for Ashley

Mary Jane slippers for Jessica

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Zen, parenting, and learning from my mistakes

"The Buddha is sometimes called, "One who has Sovereignty over Himself or Herself." Events carry us away, and we lose ourselves. We walk with grace and dignity, like an emperor, like a lion. Every step is life." Thich Nhat Hanh

Before Perrin was born, I bought a book written by a Zen Buddhist and his wife. It was called "Everyday Blessings," and it was all about mindful parenting. Mindfulness means moment-to-moment, non-judgmental awareness. I remember underlining many passages and making notes in the margins, and I was certain I would parent with zen master-like tranquility and compassion. I would have limitless empathy and sympathy for my child and do what was right for him, society be damned. And then I actually became a parent in a society that places an unfair label on only children, and somewhere between his 2nd birthday and now, I somehow lost sight of what was really important. I started thinking that I had to do whatever it took to make sure that Perrin defied all those stereotypes of being selfish and spoiled so that he would be looked upon as the astounding exception to a ridiculous rule. I started to pay more attention to the other mothers who were staring at me like I was a terrible mom when Perrin was throwing a huge fit in the store than to the real reason behind the screams. My embarrassment at being thought of as a bad parent overwhelmed me, and I haven't been showing my son the empathy he very much needs from me. To see that his emotional outbursts are his way of trying to express something he can't convey with words, and that it is not because he is trying to be defiant out of anger, but out of frustration. I must make it my mission to see the world through the eyes of my son and not through the eyes of the perfect mother through which I would like the world to see me.
"The times they need our acceptance and our love the most are, inevitably, those times when it is hardest for us to give." Myla and Jon Kabat-Zinn, "Everyday Blessings"

We live to survive our paradoxes

So, here it is. Brian's Christmas sweater. I'm so in crazy love with this sweater that he'll be lucky to actually receive this gem. It's maddeningly comfortable, and the cable turned out a helluva lot better than I imagined for my first crack at 'em. The reason I look so pissed in the pic is b/c Perrin was thwacking at the camera with a broom. Don't ask.
In other news, John comes home tonight from the latest trip to Austin. If I had to do this single parent gig every day I'd be institutionalized. I miss him so.
Ooh Ooh and here's the other thing. In April, I will be taking my class to become a doula. I'm so excited about it I could wet myself. I didn't discover my true calling until I was 28 yrs old, and now that I know what I'm supposed to do on this earth (for a living I mean) I can't wait to get started. Being a mother is delightful, and I truly believe that it is the greatest gift I've ever been given, but once Perrin is in school, I'll be bored to tears. Oh, what will I do without the daily pummelings I receive from my sweet little monkey?

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Five years and we still like each other

Five years ago at this very moment, I was walking down the aisle toward the man of my dreams. He was crying, and I was trying very hard not to swoon. I was excited and terrified and every other emotion rolled up in a big froofy white dress. Five years, and I still consider myself the luckiest woman on the planet to be married to such a wonderful human being. He's my lobster.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Brian's DNA sweater

This is the sweater I'm knitting for my sister's fiance for Christmas. The pattern is just a top-down raglan to his measurements, with the double helix cable pattern thrown in the mix. He's a science guy, so he should dig it. He's a pure delight of a person too. My sister is quite the smitten kitten.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

How Halloween works as a parent

Step 1
Get kid to gut pumpkin so you don't have to touch the gooey grossness

Step 2
Dress kid in costume and hope he doesn't get bored with it in twelve minutes...and don't show him the candy you're giving to OTHER kids or you get this face

Step 3
Get cute neighbor kid (in this case, Isa) to stand next to your kid and pose for obligatory pre-candy shot

Step 4
Run behind kid and at every house he hits, remind him to say "trick or treat" and "thank you" when the goods are given.

Step 5
Let kid eat one piece of candy, send kid to bed, and then raid his stash for the chocolate. After all, 2 yr olds don't really need that much sugar, do they?

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Weekly Cartoon #4

Boyfriend curse. Fact or Fiction. Could it be in their DNA to not appreciate the art of handmade gifts, much like their inability to pick up their socks and replace the toilet paper? This mysterious phenomenon needs further investigation.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Yup. Another purple shirt

Pattern is basically the Rusted Root with eyelet lace instead of leafy lace down the side. I removed the puffs on the sleeves, and added a crochet edge to the sleeves and the bottom of the shirt.
Yarn is Cotton Classic that Ana sent me.
I am so in love with the top-down raglan pattern; I was able to finish this in 9 days b/c it's so stinkin' easy. I may never do another seamed sweater again.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

The best part of every day

When the sun goes down, and the curtains are drawn, it is time for FLASHLIGHT RAVE!!!! John, Perrin, and I turn off all the lights in the house, crank up the tunes on the radio, and shake our booties while running around with flashlights. I'm sure it looks like Watergate going on over here every night, but it is what I look forward to every day. All the troubles of the day are washed away by our silly ravin'. Right before bedtime, we climb under the covers of our bed and chase each other's light beams until Perrin giggles himself into a stupor.
My boys are my biggest joy. Even though there are times when it may seem overwhelming, and I feel utterly inept, these times of pure happiness strip away all the moments that made my head want to explode and make it easy to look forward to the adventures of the next day.

Monday, October 23, 2006

I just remembered this is a knitting blog

Prepare yourself for massive purging of TMI, which as many of you know is my specialty. But if I pour it all out here, you're all spared having to listen to my bitching in real life. You're welcome.
I have been knitting....quite a lot actually. The chunky green sweater was done in a week (check out the flickr for the pic), I'm almost done with Christmas knitting (minus Brian's hopefully awesome sweater), and I'm more than halfway done with a cute little lacey raglan for myself. Right now, knitting is the only thing keeping me from crying my eyes out.
This has been a very tough week for us here at Casa de la Wright. Perrin has officially become the schoolyard bully, and I can't for the life of me figure out what's going on with him. Is it normal 2 yr old behavior or am I the world's worst mom? It's nearly impossible to find another mom who will admit that her kid is ever anything but perfection, so it's difficult to gauge what "normal" is. Although normal for any offspring of mine is definitely subject to interpretation. My one major insecurity is always worrying that everything I do as a parent is screwing the kid up. I pretty much rock at everything else :) My own mom was so extraordinary that it's almost impossible to live up to those standards.
In other news, I am socializing. Helen and I have started our own little knitting group, and it's a very much needed opportunity to get out of the house minus toddler and talk to a grownup. I dig her. I realize that after I hang out with a new person, I go home and replay the entire dialogue in my head and critique myself on whether or not I was inappropriate. A habit I formed back in the day when I totally offended every person I encountered. I find myself trying so hard to keep conversation safe and small-talky that I don't really show my true personality. I'm now understanding that holding back a little bit might actually be a societal norm I didn't pick up. Maybe we're supposed to save our truest selves, the part of us that can be dark or just a little too weird for public, to the people we know will accept us in all our forms. And that keeping these social experiences light and fun doesn't mean we're being fake. I'm learning that telling someone my entire life story isn't necessary for them to know who I am or to decide if they want to be my friend. I'm still learning, still developing these social skills that I never really acquired growing up.
So......I will have knitting pics up soon. No cartoon this week just cuz I didn't feel like drawing one. Try not to cry yourself to sleep in disappointment. I must go do laundry. Good day.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Happy birthday to my one and only

Today is my husband's 28th birthday. He is my hero. My one true love. Most people spend their entire adult lives trying to find that one person who sets them on fire and makes them feel safe and loved. I was lucky enough to find that person when I was 21. John is an extraordinary person. Kind and selfless. He carries himself with the confidence and dignity of a man twice his age, yet he can tell the dirtiest jokes that would have a 13 yr old blowing soda out of his nose. The night that John and I revealed our feelings for each other, my best friend told me that he would take care of me for the rest of my life. I truly believe that he would leap in front of a bullet for me and our son. I believe that he would run to the far end of the earth to make us happy. So, today I honor the love of my life. The man who makes me tingle still and folds me into his big arms every night to keep me warm. I love you, babe.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

The first snowfall

Not even Halloween, and we've seen our first Chicago snow. Perrin thought it was the coolest thing in the universe and just had to go play in it. It snowed furiously (or in my southern opinion) for over an hour, but by the afternoon the sun had melted it away, leaving only these pics as proof to my TX clan that it ever existed. I've been reassured that this is yet another freakish weather event, much like the heat wave just a couple of months ago.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Ana Rocks!!!!

Last week, I ordered some gorgeous stitch markers from my friend, Ana. Today, I check the mail and lookeeeeee!!!
Not only did she send me the markers I ordered in a lovely wooden box, but she so generously and awesomely sent me some extras and some yummy yarn. Ana is the bee's knees.

Thanks Ana. I love it all.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Weekly Cartoon #3

My kid sister, unintentionally promoting a band she despises all in the name of comfiness and boyfriend loyalty.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Some Chicagoing pics

Me and my darling boys from the skydeck of the Sears Tower.

Me and Jason laughing hysterically at the bronzed Bob Newhart at the Navy Pier. It was his idea. Aren't we cool?

Perrin not quite understanding the concept of the telescopes.

My absolute favorite painting at the Art Institute. The Eventuality of Destiny by Giorgio de Chirico. I was practically hypnotized by this painting, even though the gallery also contained several Monets and Picassos that I had never seen before in real life.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Tattoo vs. Yarn

The never-ending saga of two over-the-top obsessions (borderline addictions) that are constantly threatening to steal all my money. I have 9 tattoos and have been debating getting a new one - a half sleeve of a phoenix flying out of the fire on my upper left arm. A stunning work of art it would be. A $400 or $500 work of art. The process of getting tattooed is a major high for me and the finished product makes me insanely giddy.
And then there's yarn. I have a weakness for cashmere. And it's sweater weather. The combo is enough to make my heart race with excitement.
So, let's face it. Part of being a red-blooded American is mind-numbing, crippling debt, so I'm fulfilling my patriotic duty by racking up the digits on my credit card.
Well, we'll see which addiction wins the battle.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Chicagoing, Christmas knitting, and basement flooding

Oh, so much has been going on in the last several days. Our best friend for like a million years came up from Austin to visit us this last weekend. We took him to oodles of touristy places like Sears Tower, Shedd Aquarium, Art Institute, Field Museum, and the Navy Pier. He loved it, but he did admit it was a bit chilly for his liking (it was in the 50s and WINDY!) We gorged on Chicago-style pizza and italian beef sandwiches and hung out at the Irish Pub in downtown Downers Grove. Pics will have to wait b/c of the next craptacular event....the rainstorm from hell.
Last night, from 9:30 to 6:30 this morning we were without power b/c of a killer rainstorm. Due to the power outage, the pumps in our basement that prevent it from flooding were not working. This morning we found our basement in 6 inches of water. John's childhood mementoes were destroyed in this flood. Apparently, the layout of our (rented) property is such that when it floods, the water is siphoned into the basement INTENTIONALLY and then pumped back out into what we have now learned is our neighbor's basement. When the electricity goes out, so does the pump. Shittiness all around I tell ya. Our landlord came by this morning and helped John get the rest of the water out and installed some fans to dry it out. Anyhoo, b/c the power was wonky, John's computer is off, which means I can't access our album's website for photos.
In other news, I've been working on Christmas knitting and developing my own pattern for a top designed to wear over a longer sleeved shirt. I'm making it with this adorable lilac paper yarn that an old SNB bud gave me a year ago. We'll see how it goes. I have finished a pair of socks that will have an owner this Xmas; I just don't want to reveal who that person is b/c she reads this blog.
I also wanted to say a big Thank You to those who have been amused by the cartoon. I have so much fun drawing them up, and I'm glad I'm not the only one who gets a giggle out of my warped sense of humor. I've decided to do them twice a week - one knitting and one non-knitting for my sister who loves my drawing but doesn't knit. Jen, hope you dig 'em cuz they're all for you, babe.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Rusted Root pics

Here she is - my new favorite shirt in the whole world. And a pic of me and the kiddo hanging out in our new front yard.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

New feature: Knitting Cartoon

Combining my love for sketching, snarkiness, and extreme knitting, I've decided to start a weekly cartoon here on the blog. Every Sunday night I will post a new cartoon all about the life of the obsessed knitter. Hope you dig. Click on the pic for full-size.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Blogs and the art of wasting time

I've become obsessed with knitting blogs. I could spend hours upon hours reading about a perfect stranger's battle with lace and only slightly feel as if my life is being slowly drained away. It's harmless voyeurism into the lives of fellow knitters. Since I'm far too lazy to actually figure out how to put buttons on the sidebar or even do the links properly, I'm going to just put a few here for anyone who comes to my blog. These are my absolute fave bloggers.

P.S. I finished Rusted Root on Thursday, but the weather has again become cloudy and rainy, so pics will wait for sun. Let me just brag a little and say this is the most adorable thing I've ever made by far. Almost flawless as well.

Enjoy the blogs

And this one, although not a knitting blog, is written by a knitter.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Let me just take a minute to say

how incredibly smokin' hot I think this guy is.

He had a cameo on "Friends" in the episode where Rachel goes to London to stop Ross's wedding (yeah, I'm one of THOSE people) and thought he was adorable. Flash forward to one of the best shows on television, "House," and my bitchy English boy fantasy reawakens. We'll pretend that on the show, he doesn't have to speak with that ridiculous American accent (which, if I had never seen him on anything else, might fool me). Let us all bask in the yummy goodness that is Hugh Laurie.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Mama and the toddler

We have our differences. He enjoys jumping in mud puddles and licking worms. I do not. I enjoy being clean and um, not licking worms. Some days we are the best of friends, giggling over the things that make toddlers giggle and just generally digging each other's company. Some days it seems that his entire purpose is to try to get me to tear out my hair, and I, in turn seem to aim only to ruin his fun. There is definitely a delicate balance between the stay-at-home mom and her child that I've not quite mastered but am figuring out as I go. Perrin and I spend all day every day together; that kind of arrangement is sure to drive anybody stone-cold bonkers. And like with any relationship, it's easy to lose sight of how to get along. It's easy to slip into a place where it's hard to relate to one another, so we stop trying to see the world through the other's eyes. I know it's hard to be 2 yrs old and want so desperately to have some control over your world but be unable to share that with the one person who is always there to tell you what to do. Sure it's a pain in the ass to clean the kiddo up after he's wallowed around in mud, but the excitement on his face is worth it. This world is a daily adventure for him, and it's often so easy to forget that things that I've seen a million times are still new to him. He's not yet desensitized to anything; maybe I'm jealous of that in my adult cynicism. Wouldn't it be great if we could hold onto that part of ourselves that never feels rushed or organized? Why is it so hard for me to remember and so easy to want to hurry him up when he's watching ants for ten minutes? Being a mom gives us a second chance to see the world as a child does, and I think it's more of a challenge for some of us than others to slow down. For a toddler, there's always time for everything. Maybe that's the attitude we should all have.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Rusted Root Progress

I'm making great progress on Rusted Root by the lovely ladies at Zephyrstyle. This is my first attempt at lace, and despite the crappy photo quality, I'm actually doing it -gasp!- correctly. It took several hours of practicing the section over and over on scrap yarn, but I was determined to get it right. In my quest to be more feminine and less punk, this was the first pattern that really got me excited. Puffy sleeves and cute lace - could it be more darling? (See past posts for pic.)
I'm knitting it with the Lorna's Laces Dove cotton/wool blend I nabbed at the Knitty party at Loopy. It's not my favorite yarn to knit with only b/c it's a little hard on my overly sensitive hands, but it's beautiful. Oh, and if you've noticed a similarity between all the things I knit for myself, yeah, I like purple.

Monday, September 11, 2006

My dad is James Bond

This kills me. My dad totally looks like Daniel Craig, the dude that is playing the new James Bond. This cracks me up, b/c at my wedding, my dad kept joking about how he looked like James Bond in his tux.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Tubey completion

She is done! 16 days of knitting every single second I could, and I've finished it. We had our unpleasant moments, like the time I had to frog the join between the shrug and the body twice b/c it didn't look quite right, but all in all a very fun knit. I didn't even mind the eternal mindless 3X1 ribbing.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Why didn't anybody tell me?

I'm rapidly approaching my 29th birthday, and a few things have become alarmingly clear to me. I am not 21. I should not dress like I am 21. This means that I should probably be bypassing Hot Topic and Forever 21 when I go to the mall. This means that I should probably stop trying to squeeze myself into clothes designed for teenagers and covered in tiny skulls.

Why hasn't anybody taken me aside and said, "Girlfriend! (cuz when I imagine this conversation, it's always with some over-the-top expression from every 90's chick flick) You are too old to be dressing like one of the Olsen twins. Punky Brewster called and she wants her wardrobe back."
Seriously. Looking in my closet, I'm growing increasingly aware that I could top every issue of Glamour's "Don't" lists.
I leave you with this little gem that in the words of the great Tommy Lee has been "sauteed in wrong sauce."

So, if you have been seen in public with me wearing atrocities such as these, I apologize. And ask that in the future, if you are to ever again be seen in public with me, PLEASE do not let me wear crap like this. Thank you and good day.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

A Toddler Adventure

My new friend, Olga, and I took our kiddos to the Brookfield Zoo this week. Despite the rainy weather, we had an absolute blast. The amazing part of being in Illinois is that you can take your kid to the zoo in the summer and not witness animals barely breathing b/c of the intense heat. Notice in the pics that the kids are wearing jackets. Yup. Jackets. In August. This was a first for me as well. Growing up in Texas, a kid rarely gets to watch animals walk around and play at the zoo. They're always sleeping or cooling off inside. I was as giddy as the kids were to see a tiger playing with a ball in his pool and baby gorillas playfully beating the crap out of each other.

Here's Olga's daughter, Ellie, and my kiddo, Perrin.

And here's one of me and Perrin

I definitely HEART Illinois in the summertime