Names have been changed to protect the innocent...and my husband...and me...but not the dog. His name is Dexter.

Friday, October 31, 2008


The Princi, as someone in our ward referred to them.
Sleeping Gleauty
Snow White
Can we go Trick or Treating yet?!?!?!
With our new Trick or Treat bags that you just made for us, Mom?!?!

Halloween is in full swing here at the Chaos House! We hope you're having a good one too. By the way, this is officially my 100th post! Can you believe I've been babbling on for 100 posts now?! And can you believe that you're still reading?!?!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

A Near Ticket Experience

I figured that it's been a while since I shared something stupid that I've done, so I'd like to take this opportunity to, once again, share with the internet world my spectacular talent of doing stupid things. It's not that they haven't been happening lately, I just haven't shared! ;o)

Last week I had one of those days where each of my errands were on opposite ends of the valley. It's not such a big deal, just some time spent in the van. In traffic. An unusual amount of traffic given that it was late morning. As a matter of fact, the traffic in all lanes, except the carpool lane, was almost at a stand still. My goal was to get into the carpool lane seeing as I almost always travel with a carpool these days. The problem? It was a double line that you're not supposed to cross for quite a ways. So I waited. And waited some more. And then I got to talking to myself about the whole situation. I said, "Self, you're just taking up extra space making this whole traffic jam that much more jammier. You might as well just skip over that pretty double lane and get out of other drivers' way. Everyone else is doing it!". I give myself a lot of peer pressure.

Anyway, as I looked around there actually were quite a few other drivers crossing over that dreaded double line and were doing just fine. I debated with myself for a few minutes before taking the plunge. There weren't any cars coming so I decided to hurry and pull into the carpool lane. Shortly after that, a BMW SUV that was quite a bit in front of me decided to do the same thing. And then, right after he/she pulled into the carpool lane, a Highway Patrolman decided to do the exact same thing! But with lights! So it was the SUV, the patrolman and me in a happy little line. It was very exciting.

I was slightly panicked, to say the least. It was pretty close. And, technically, that Highway Patrolman could have waived me over as I passed. So I made sure that I was looking straight forward as I passed them just in case. Don't want to be caught taking my eyes off the road. That would be irresponsible! Let's just keep our fingers crossed that there will be no unpleasant surprises in our mailbox in the next few weeks.

So, lesson learned. Don't cross the double lines. Ever. Just not worth it. Ya never know who's ahead of you. I hope we have all learned from my stupidity. You're welcome.

Monday, October 27, 2008

All Things Good Store-Autumn Giveaway!

The quarterly Bloggy Giveaway Carnival is here again my friends. And I'm nothing if not a joiner! So, in honor of this fine tradition, I'm hosting a giveaway from my mom's store, All Things Good. Two lucky winners will receive a $25 credit at her store. And I'm asking so little in return. All you have to do is head on over and check out all the fabulous stuff and leave a comment telling me what you're going to order even if you don't win the gift card because the store is just that fabulous! I'll randomly pick a winner this weekend and post it on my blog. If you're lucky, I'll also email you to let you know that you've won! ;o)


Friday, October 24, 2008

Friday Favorites-Late Night Edition

Well, actually, instead of a favorite I'm going to post the Lucky 7 I was tagged for in honor of the whole "getting to know you" thing. That's always a favorite. ;o) Here goes.....

7 Things I Can Do: *I'm not necessarily good at these things, but I enjoy them*
  • Can....ha ha
  • Sew, a bit
  • Whistle through my nose since I've broken it so many times
  • Plan....I'm a totally anal planner of things
  • Read, read, read....and then read some more
  • Get out just about any kind of stain
  • Writing.....obviously
7 Things I Cannot Do:
  • Teach! Especially at church. When my SIL called last week to ask me to substitute for Lolly's primary class I about had a heart attack. I made CG come with me for the first half, until he had to teach. And did I mention that there are only 2 kids in her class, including her?! Yep, I'm a pansy. I'm doing it again next week so hopefully I can be less of a baby about it then. *fingers crossed*
  • Ice Skate. Or any kind of skating actually.
  • Whistle through my mouth
  • Leave the dentists office without donating $$$ to his "Summer Home Fund"
  • Leave the toilet seat lid while flushing....nasty. I'm even training Lolly to close it before flushing too. It's a germ thing.
  • Walk by a license plate without reading it. And it drives me crazy when they don't make sense because then I waste precious, depleting brain cells trying to figure it out.
  • Wear socks while sleeping
7 Things That Attracted Me to CG:
  • His laugh. Seriously, the best laugh. Ever!
  • His truck. Ha ha! Just kidding. That's just what got the ball rolling, baby.
  • Sense of humor. We've always been able to laugh together, often at each other, and it just makes life more fun.
  • His dedication. He's very dedicated to taking care of his family and works hard to do so.
  • Our balance. If I'm freaked out about something he's usually pretty calm and vice versa.
  • He humors me. Sometimes laughing while humoring me, but humoring me nonetheless!
  • He's super cute and I knew our children would be the cutest kids to ever grace this earth with half his DNA flowing through their veins.
7 Things I Say Most Often:
  • Seriously!?
  • For the love of ALL THAT IS HOLY......!!!!!
  • Leave your sister alone.
  • She gets the red hair from both sides of the family.
  • Yes, she's going to have red hair, too.
  • Dang it!
  • Bless his/her heart......
7 Celebrity Admirations:
  • Aerosmith-I mean, seriously, with a mouth like that, you've got to be successful.
  • Amelia Earhart-I've always wondered what really happened to her.
  • Rosa Parks-How can ya not admire her?!
  • Angelina Jolie-Yes, she's nuttier than a squirrel in the fall, but I think she does a lot of great humanitarian work with her very large income.
  • And that's all I can think of.......
7 Favorite Foods:
  • Avocados
  • Pizza (I lurv Sam's Club Pizza)
  • Smothered Burritos
  • Soda (it's one of my greatest downfalls)
  • Homemade grape juice (the grapes are steaming as I type)
  • Chocolate (another downfall.....)
  • Raw veggies, especially when I'm pregnant
7 People to Tag:
  • Suzie
  • Ferny
  • Marsha
  • Hairyshoefairy (maybe in the second trimester?)
  • Jilly
  • De-merry (miss you!)
  • CG.....way to go CG!!!!! This will be his first post ever so stay tuned!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Catching Up

It seems like the Fairies of Anti-Simplification are out to get me. I'm still trudging along with the Dare To Simplify but I'm wondering if maybe I'm not doing it right because I'm not having the instantaneous results that I was hoping for. What? They're not instantaneous? That explains some of it. ;o) Probably not all of it though.

Last week the assignment was to not multitask during meals, which has been interesting. I did find that not doing something was a bit easier than doing something different, although I did miss the meal multitask more than I thought possible. I was pretty much able to stick to the challenge for the most part, but I found that, for myself, not doing something else during the meal was one thing. Tuning into what was going on at the table and actively participating was a totally different story. For me it didn't work to just not multitask during breakfast and lunch, I had to make an effort to tune into the goings on at the table and not let my mind wander off into random places like it so easily does. I've realized not multitasking during meals is good, but making more of an effort to interact with my kids during meals is even better. And harder.

This week's goal is fabulous because hopefully I'll get a few new quick and easy recipes to make at the end of the day when the day has been long. So, I'm hoping to compile a few pantry friendly recipes to share with everyone participating and getting some more to add to that list. I'm going to copy Daring Young Mom and post the list in my kitchen because I also find that when I'm desperate for an easy meal, all I can think of is McDonald's. I'm very happy about this because it's right up my recipe swap alley, which isn't happening this week because my jaw still hurts like a mother and I'm focusing all my recipe thought power on my list. I'll post my list here as soon as I've got one. Until then........

Happy Halloween Everyone!
Yes, that is the outfit that Lolly is wearing today.
We've got holiday spirit, even if it's the wrong holiday.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Dental Spa

I got to go to the dentist yesterday and have some work done. Yay. I didn't know how extensive the work was going to be until they made sure that I had a pain medication prescription when we were leaving. This had me a little worried in my hazy state since they don't usually do that and I'm usually just fine the next day. Not so this time around. This time stitches were involved. I'm not sure how or why, but it's not pleasant. Hurts like a mother, actually.

So, once again I find myself on another spa day, but this time I'm a thousand dollars poorer. I think it's time for an intervention of some sort. Next time, I'm totally going for a spa that offers the traditional mani/pedi and not the drilly/stitchy. Probably costs less too.

OK, my whining is over. Happy Friday Everyone!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Recipe Swap Wednesday-Apple Sauce Spice Cake

In all honesty, when this cake is done it just looks like an average, possibly not that good, spice cake. But let me tell you people, it is super yummy. I got it off of a can of Western Family apple sauce and we've really liked it. Now, all I need to do is find a yummy caramel sauce topping for it and then it would be perfect!

Apple Sauce Spice Cake
3 1/2 cups flour
3 tsp. baking soda
3 tsp. cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 tsp. salt
2 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup butter
2 eggs
3 cups applesauce
1 cup pecans, chopped & toasted (I don't add this...too many nut allergies in the world)
1/4 cup powdered sugar

Grease and flour a tube pan. I used a bundt pan back when my sister still lived in my basement and I borrowed hers. I haven't made this recipe since they moved out. ;o)
Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
Combine flour, salt, baking soda and spices.
In a separate bowl beat butter and brown sugar until fluffy. Add eggs and mix for two minutes.
Add applesauce and mix thoroughly. Mix in flour mixture. Fold in pecans.
Pour into pan and bake for 90 minutes or until done. Turn out of pan and cool completely.
Dust with powdered sugar and serve.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Audio Detox Report with a Side of Irony

Last week I wrote about the Dare to Simplify going on over at Daring Young Mom's blog and my intentions to participate in it. Amazingly I was actually able to stick with it. Go Me!

The very first challenge was to listen to only classical music or no music at all during the week. The results are probably not all that surprising, despite that last week just happened to be our local classical stations telethon....or maybe it was a radio-a-thon. A bit frustrating since I couldn't find more than one of my classical CD's. Anyway, I noticed that things were a bit calmer around the house and that my very exhurberant children were actually a bit calmer with the music on than they were, say, rockin out to of my personal faves. The thing that was a pleasant surprise throughout the week was that as each day passed I found that I was more able to process the chaos going on in my head. I was able to think more clearly through what needed to be done and prioritize better. Slowly, my swirling thoughts are becoming a bit less swirly and a lot more useful. I'm also finding that I don't miss all the other music or background noise as much as I thought I would. I have decided that this is something that I would like to continue doing, although probably not quite as strictly as I was last week. Classical music is good for brain development and we all seem to still be in the developmental stage.

Now, for this next weeks challenge. Here it is in DYM's exact words:

Dare to Simplify Week 2 – Multitasking at Meal Times
I am a hopeless multi-tasker. It’s truly sick how many things I try to do at once. I never finish books, tasks or thoughts half the time because I’m trying to do 10 other things at once. It seems a little broad, complicated and unrealistic to set a goal to stop all multitasking this week. So what I’d like to start with is avoiding multi-tasking during mealtimes and this includes all meal times. Can you sit through 3 meals a day with your family without doing something else? I’m fine at dinner but at breakfast I sit the kids down with their food and run around doing 10 other things while they and I eat. Lunch isn’t much better.

Meals are a good time to relax, unwind and get closer with my family but I tend to think I’m too “busy” to actually do it. One week, 21 meals, sitting, eating, and talking like a civilized person who’s more interested in my family than in being productive. I’m gonna give it a try.

Here is where the irony comes in. You may be wondering what I was doing while I read this, or maybe not because why would you. But! I was eating breakfast with my girls when I just happened to read this weeks challenge. Yes, it's true. I'm a serious meal time multi-tasker. It's pretty bad people. Talk about a challenge hitting close to home. It's especially bad at breakfast and lunch because there isn't quite as much conversational potential, if you know what I mean. But I'm going to go for it anyway and hope for the best. I'll report about my success or , ahem, failure next week. Wish me luck!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Friday Favorite-Canning

After accidentally taking the last two weeks off of Friday Favorites, I thought I'd go all domestic on this favorite. Although, in my defense, one of those Fridays CG took the day off so that I could get a good start on my Christmas projects, even though we did spend the morning picking apples and pears at my parents house. And I take my days off very seriously. So seriously that I recently informed CG that he still owes me a morning!

My favorite for this week is something that I grew interested in when I was pregnant with Lolly. One of my cute sisters in law grew up canning and was willing to show me the ropes. And she's actually still my go-to girl whenever I have a canning question. I've also found this book to be pretty helpful and totally on my intelligence level!
She invited me out to her house and we made applesauce and grape juice. Yum! This was about 6 weeks before I had Lolly so I don't know how helpful I was, but I learned a lot. Since then I have mostly canned on my own with help from CG, especially if there are bugs involved!

Last week I canned the pears that we picked from my parents tree. I don't have a ton of experience when it comes to canning pears, but I gave it the old college try anyway. Here's some photographic proof that I'm actually the one to can the pears.
Yes, it took me 2 hours to get 4 quarts. ;o)

And then on Saturday afternoon, CG and I made applesauce. Lolly came in and insisted on helping us make the applesauce just at the right time. It's not all that surprising that she wanted to help, but I was amazed at how good of a job she did since she's only 3 years old! Here are a few pictures of our sauce making. The last few years I have really enjoyed canning, but having Lolly help me gave me insight to the fun we will have for many years to come. This is something that I can share with my daughters (and sons if I ever have any!) as they grow and pass on to them this rapidly disappearing tradition.
I don't know what it is about canning that draws me to it. I didn't grow up canning and it's a whole lot easier to just buy it at the store. But I love it. It makes me feel all accomplished and pioneer-y. And I love feeding my family with home canned goods. It just feels right for us. And it's definitely a Fall Favorite!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Recipe Swap Wednesday-Peanut Butter Scotchies

This is one of my Grandma's recipes that she used to always make and I thought I would share since it's pretty uncommon.

Peanut Butter Scotchies
1 cup peanut butter
2 packages butterscotch morsels (you can also mix half butterscotch and half chocolate)
1/4 pound butter or margarine
1 large can chow mein noodles (about 5 cups)
3-4 cups mini marshmallows

Mix noodles and marshmallows together in a large bowl. Melt morsels, peanut butter and butter. Mix well with noodles and marshmallows. Drop by spoonfuls and let cool. Makes 5-6 dozen.

They may look a little funny when you're done, but they are seriously fabulous. I'll give the Mr. Linky another shot just in case anyone is feeling the recipe swap love....

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Lolly School

That's what preschool is called around here. Well, I guess that's not completely accurate seeing as Lolly is not actually Lolly's real name. Thank goodness for internet anonymity for paranoid mothers like me.

Every afternoon during Babs nap (yes, she is napping again, thank goodness) Lolly and I do preschool. It nothing super fancy. We have a letter of the week that we focus on and this month we do Halloween crafts on Fridays....or will be starting this Friday. We usually do a letter tracing sheet and a craft that goes along with our theme with a coloring sheet or two sprinkled in between. Last year my sister in law sent the link to this site, First School, which I have used every week for most of my lessons. It also links to other sites for crafts and other additional tools. It's fabulous and I highly recommend it for any of your kids entertainment or educational needs!

Although I've always known that Lolly is a smarty pants, she just never ceases to amaze me with how smart she is and how quickly she learns. She asks about doing preschool all day long and is so excited when it's finally time. We usually only spend about an hour or so, but that one on one time has been so wonderful for both of us.

Here are a few pictures of some projects that we've done lately in preschool.
Here's where we have started showcasing her work.
And this is our helpful reminder for what day it long as I keep up with it!
And this is my preschool basket where I keep all my preschooly things.
Doesn't it look organized?! It's amazing the kind of tricks that cameras can play.
I have always loved school and it makes me so exceedingly happy to see how much she is enjoying her first little foray into education. I'm excited for her to start real school in a few years, but I'm a little terrified too. I'll just have to get her a back pack big enough that I can sneak into class with her everyday so that I don't miss a moment. And an extra Babs pouch too.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Lady of Perpetual Simplification?

We'll have to see about that one, but I am going to try. As we all know, my blog name is an apt description of me....perpetual chaos. I married a man who also brings a little chaos to any calmness that may be around. And then I gave birth to two darling girls that are chaos personified! Genetics and circumstances are stacked against me, but I'm organized in my head so that gives me great hope!

It's not for a lack of trying on my part. Sadly, I used to refer to myself as the "Church Nazi" on Sunday mornings in my vain attempt each week to get my little family to 9 o'clock church on time. But then I came to the conclusion that we were not a happy family (at least I wasn't!) by the time we got to church so we were better off to be a little late and happy than on time and unhappy. And I've made some progress with bringing a bit of order to my chaos with applying a few nicely placed routines and schedules in my life. The girls have always done well with nap and eating schedules and we now have a bit of a morning routine where we do our chores which Lolly calls our morning choices. (We've been talking about choices a lot lately!) And although all of these things helped, I wouldn't necessarily say that I had simplified my life.

This afternoon while I was reading one of my favorite blogs, Daring Young Mom, she had a very inspiring post about simplifying her life and an actual plan on how to follow through with achieving it. Fortunately it's one of those plans that allows others to join and follow her around like the band geek that I truly am. **As a side note, I was never in band. I played the violin. I guess that makes me an orchestra geek....who is easily sidetracked...** Anyhoo, the first baby step toward simplification is only listening to classical music or none at all. This could put a damper on our Disco Dancing Parties, but it's only for one week so we'll survive. There will be a different small task to work on each week and then I will, hopefully, post about my progress. Who posts could become so zen that just reading my blog will be the emotional equivalent of a yoga session. Or, if I can't keep up with this, as with so many other things, we just won't talk about it anymore, mmkay.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Recipe Swap Wednesday-Homemade Pancakes

For the past few months we have been working with Lolly on potty training. There were a few rough spots, but we did pretty well considering it was our first time doing all this. Lately, we have been working on keeping her pull up dry overnight and I offered Mickey Mouse pancakes for bribery to get that done. It took a few nights, but she's been doing well. And, since I'm so on top of things, the first morning that she kept her pull up dry, I realized that I did not have any pancake mix. So, to the trusty internet I went in search of a simple homemade pancake recipe that I actually had all the ingredients for and this is what I found. We've made it quite a bit lately so it's be thoroughly tested. And I didn't change anything, in case you were wondering.

Homemade Pancakes
1 cup flour
2 tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tbsp. baking powder
1 egg
1 cup milk
2 tbsp. oil

Combine all dry ingredients in bowl and set aside. I sometimes add cinnamon at this point. Mix together egg, milk and oil and add to dry mixture. Then make the pancakes. Preferably in a Mickey Mouse shape. If not, circles will do.....I guess. ;o)

So I'm going to give this another shot that maybe, somebody out there in internet land wants to play along with the recipe swap. Eventually I will give up if no one plays, but not today!

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