Friday, December 30, 2011

Christmas at the House of Chaos

Hello! I hope you are all enjoying a restful week, and gearing up to ring in the new year!

We had a wonderful Christmas with our family. We attended Christmas Eve Mass, and set a new record arriving 2 hours before Mass started to ensure that we'd have seats. If you're Catholic, you know what I mean. Lots of Chreasters were in attendance, and rather than being annoyed at not having seats, we try to be grateful that they are there to celebrate with us :)

It was such a special service, and I was filled with the joy, hope and spirit of Christ. At least until I made into the parking lot and was nearly mowed over. I'm not judging, but if you're there every week, you know there is a traffic flow system in place that ensures everyone filters out in a friendly and orderly fashion. Okay. I'm totally judging. See why I have to go to Mass every Sunday?? Forgive me.

 After Christmas Eve Mass, I hosted a casual dinner. Here's a shot of the table.

Call the blog police. I used paper napkins. Oh the horror!!

Here's the "kids' table." Although, only one kid sat there. The rest of them hijacked the adult table, so my father, husband and I rounded out the foursome.

I served Barefoot Contessa's Lasagna. I LOVE this recipe! It's delicious, and I could make it ahead of time. I popped it in the oven before we left for church, and it was good to go when we got home.

My kids narrowly escaped the "naughty" list, and were excited to see that Santa had indeed come and delivered presents for Christmas morning. He also left a nutcracker for each of them.

My mother hosted Christmas dinner with a much more elaborate menu, a prettier tablescape and cloth napkins. I forgot to take pictures until dinner and several glasses of wine had been consumed. Don't worry... I won't make you look at blurry photos of dirty plates.

Now don't hate me for this bit of advice. However, if you choose to write an annual Christmas letter and send it to a family of sarcastic smart a**es, be forewarned that your letter may be read aloud (in an unintended manner) as after-dinner entertainment. (I'm checking the Confession times as I type this.)

I showed you most of my Christmas decor herehere, and here. You're probably so over Christmas decorations, but I'm going to show you a couple anyway, because I'm annoying thoughtful like that. There were a couple of areas that needed a little Christmas right that very minute. And, these literally took a minute to throw together.

Apothecary jar, Epsom salt, greenery, ornaments, ribbon. Done.

Bowl, ornaments, greenery. Could it be any simpler? I think not.

And that, my friends, concludes Christmas 2011 at the House of Chaos. I'll be back soon to recap my first year of blogging and let you in on my New Year's resolutions.

Thanks so much for stopping by!!


  1. Hello Carolyn

    I chuckled at your comment on the parking lot and mass at Christmas - being of the same faith, I know what you mean.

    Your home and dinner looked delicious.

    Wishing you a very happy New Year and I am excited to welcome 2012. I just know it is going to be the best year ever

    Helen xxx

  2. Everything was beautiful. We had the same lasagna at my daughter's.

  3. This looks lovely and sounds so yummy! Your Christmas decorations are gorgeous! Happy New Year!

  4. Wait!!! You took FOUR little boys to church two hrs early???? Oh, my! You must have threatened them within an inch of their lives! I know what you mean about sooooome people sharing their Christmas letters with a bit of snarky joy. I actually have an ongoing competition with my friend from L.A. She has been winning due to a certain family of overacheivers. Either that or they lie!
    Linda @ A Toile Tale

  5. Chreasters? That's nice...

  6. Carolyn, everything is so warm and elegant, what a pretty kids table too! Christmas sounds perfect, and wishing you a happy and healthy New Year!

  7. Your Christmas Eve tables looked lovely, Carolyn. You have such a large dining room!
    I just presented Sweet Chaos with the Blog on Fire Award. See my Dec 31st post for the details.
    Have a very Happy New Year!
    ~ Wendi ~

  8. You're not the only one that uses paper napkins. I use them myself! I had to laugh at the Christmas letter comment. My husband and I used to receive one every year from one of his relatives and we used to pretend to drop everything we're doing when it came in the mail and excitedly read it. We (of course) were making fun of it because it was nothing more than a "brag letter". We knew about some of the negative things going on in their life, but they would paint the picture of "life is bliss". Ha! I don't send those letters out. I write a personal note in one and that's it. Glad you had a good Christmas. We had lasagna too on Christmas Eve!

  9. What a wonderful review of your Christmas season. Love the Mass story...God loves THEM, too...that's what I keep telling myself!

    Wishing you a very Happy, Healthy New Year- xo Diana

  10. I made lasagna for our Christmas dinner for the same reason. It was done the day before and I just had to heat it up, make a salad and bread and we were GOOD TO GO!!!! Happy New Year! Your Tables both looked beautiful! Would love to see blurry pics of dirty plates:):) XO, Pinky

  11. What do you mean you read my Christmas letter out loud for entertainment??? :~P

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  13. LOLing... I grew up Catholic and we went to mass each week, but come the holidays ( any holiday but mostly Easter and Christmas) my dad would comment about all the " Creaster Bunnies" at mass and grumble, of course I would hear ~ Easter bunnies~ be very excited and keep looking around for them!!

    Glad it was a wonderful holiday.. paper napkins and all!


  14. Sounds like the perfect Christmas!
    Happy New Year to you and my best wishes for an awesome 2012. Thanks for all your sweet comments and support xo

  15. Your house looked simply magical. Great job decorating!