DECK THE HALLS WITH BALLS OF NUTCRACKERS.

I designed my own Christmas cards this year.

front

Inside

 

Inappropriate?  Yeah. Totally.  Appropriately me?  Yeah.  Totally.  Only 30 people got one of these cards so if you were one of them consider yourself lucky.  Or unlucky. Take your pick.

I also have ridiculously inappropriate Christmas coasters hidden on one of my bookshelves.  I know they’re there and I snicker to myself.  If you come to visit you’ll have to search to find them but they’re there, horrifying the glitter right off of my nutcrackers.  And trust me when I tell you it’s hard to offend anything that has the word “nut” in it.

I’m winding down here in the house of The Art of Doing Stuff.  Like most of you,  I look forward to my yearly vacation from about July onwards.    It’s the one week a year that I truly take off.  I don’t write posts in advance, I don’t publish posts, I don’t check on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram.  Unless I’ve taken an especially good selfie where I look like I’m living a way better life than I actually am.

I truly try to make a point of going pretty low tech during the week between Christmas and New Years.  I listen to music and lay on the couch and binge watch television shows. And no, a television isn’t high tech. A good way to judge whether something you own is high tech or not is to ask yourself if you can buy it at Goodwill for $5.

I’ll eat the bacon wrap appetizers that I hid in the back of my fridge.  The same ones I told my Christmas Eve guests I had run out of when they asked me for more.

I’ll knit.

I’ll draw.

I’ll go to antique markets.

I might clean a bit.

I’ll probably install a little bit of quarter round.

I’ll make a door panel for the freezer in my mudroom.

I’ll refinish all my floors,  build an antique wardrobe out of tree bark I found while chopping my incredibly rare but organic and sustainable Christmas tree, count all of the corners in my house, train my cats to waltz, relabel all my canned goods with Japanese braille, write letters to Kim Jong-Un asking him if he thinks “I got game”, design a line of couches for Ikea, produce a movie based on the huge success story of my “I got game” line of Ikea couches, start a support group for men who are going to have to shave off their beards sooner or later, invent gum and ask my neighbours what exactly do they picture when I say “a herd”.

I think it’s pretty obvious I’m joking about that last one. Everyone knows a herd is over 15 and usually applies to Alpacas.  Who are cute and hardly make any noise at all.

It’s a bit late in the game, (especially for someone who’s world renowned for having game) to be deciding on Christmas Eve dinner but I’m still working on that.  I had narrowed it down to French Onion Soup with a few appetizers but I put a lot of cheese in my French Onion Soup and cheese makes people farty.  My house is small, my family is large.  You do the fart math.

I know we’ll be having my Snowglobe à la modes for dessert because I just went out and spent all my cheese money on wine glasses to serve them in.

I hope you all have a great holiday and that you get at least a few days off from whatever jobs or responsibilities you have. I realize this is more difficult when you have children but only if, like,  you have some sort of parenting code of conduct or something. If you’re a bit loosey goosey about parenting you’ll have an easier time locking them in their rooms for 4-5 days so you can get some rest. If they have a few cans of Boost and an iPad they’ll be fine.

Merry Christmas.

 

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111 Comments

  1. Auntiepatch says:

    Merry Christmas my friend! Thanks for all the laughs……..

  2. Debbie from Illinois says:

    Thanks for a great year filled with bloggy goodness! Merry Christmas right back at ya.

  3. Kathleen says:

    Merry Christmas to you too. I love the cards! Had I sent a card with the catchy phrase, my family would not have been surprised at all! 🙂
    Enjoy your down time. Will wait with bated breath until you are back. (Therapy for the withdrawal symptoms I’m going to get?)

    Catch you again in the new year.

  4. Muff Hackett says:

    Happy Christmas, Karen! May the next week or so be filled with joy, peace and plenty of Christmas cookies. Thanks for the last year – I’m looking forward to the next one together

  5. charlotte tataryn says:

    OK Karen, you’ve had me hook and sinker but a bat in a box? Bats are beautiful flying creatures that eat fruit, and bugs we’re not fond of and this looks way too much like something vampire-ish.
    N E way, merry Christmas and you’ve not lost me but this was just a bit weird and I only discovered it when I SAW the poor thing listed as one of your favorite things. Ewww.
    Mine are snow which is a good thing, sparkly snow – an even better ‘Christmas card-like’ thing and that people are SO much nicer, even if just for a short bit.
    All your other Christmas related stuff, cool and I even sprinkled Epsom salts on a display today compliments of you. Yup, looks enough like sparkly snow to suit me.
    Have a great entrance into the new year; as always I’m looking forward to your new post.
    Charlotte

    • whitequeen96 says:

      I was wondering where in her post she put that (or what kind of drugs you were on), but then I noticed it below today’s post. I wasn’t reading The Art of Doing Stuff back then, so I’m glad you called my attention to it. It almost looks as if the bat is sprayed gold, which makes it really festive! Weird, but interesting . . .

  6. Mark says:

    Thanks for the recipe that I am going to make for Christmas Eve (I just checked the cupboards if I have all the ingredients)… And thanks for the interesting and funny posts. Hope you have a fantastic Christmas.

  7. Jan says:

    You’ve been making me smile for a while now. Funny how at this time of year we can all feel alone, I stumbled onto your post about your fella leaving. Nicely ironic, I guess. My fella of 33 years left, and this will be my 2nd Christmas alone (and I’m spending it painting my bedroom floor LOL!). Don’t really remember much about the first one. I find inspiration to get it back together in many places, but this is one of my favs! Have a wonderful holiday and well deserved time off!

    • whitequeen96 says:

      I feel for you and hope that this Christmas is better than the last. Painting your bedroom floor sounds like a wonderful idea and a great way to start the new year. Think of the feeling of satisfaction you’ll have afterwards! Buy some yummy stuff and put on some great music and have yourself a party!

    • judy says:

      This may land like a semi-dead Mackerel on your half painted floor and its easier to offer than it is to implement but once decades ago I was having a really horrendous time in Life and I thought a bit about how restful it would be to not be..When weirdly the child’s song of Row, Row, Row your boat……came into my mind and I thought…..geeze..now you have gone totally around several bends but when I thought through the words I found a little help. Row your own boat,row it gently down your stream which leaves the past out of sight and more and more remote from ones present Life. Be Merry because Life is but a Dream.

      It suggests in a few pretty phrases that we move through time and space and have our moments of existence and best to make the decision that barring the tragic times of Life when grief is inevitable we ought to tell the brain imp that drums a list of how we failed and why we deserve to be unhappy to shut the F**k up because Happy is a much better state of mind than all others. It helped me- especially the reminder that I’m probably no more flawed than the rest of Humanity and for me it helped…hope it gives someone food for thought and WOW! A new year……..Hope it’s the best and most wonderful for all of you and Karen. You are an impressive group and Karen is a very small person of gargantuan accomplishment.

      • Jan says:

        And a very merry Christmas to ya’ll! Just got through ripping up carpet, etc last night. WOW that stuff is heavy! Had to cut it up in pieces just to get it out the door. Now gonna scrub the floor and probably wait til 26th to make sure it’s completely dry (concrete) before actually painting. Holy Cow sure cluttered up the rest of the house! and the dog thinks it’s GREAT!
        Judy’s tune sure puts a new light on that little ditty, doesn’t it!? A good one! Stereo is always blasting while I work LOL! Rum and eggnog and wrapping paper today. Let’s see what kind of mess I can make of all that LOL!
        Thanks for your kind thoughts. Life goes on, doesn’t it. With or without us. So let’s go with it.

        Warm and cozy days for everyone!

      • Patti says:

        Well said, Judy, well said.

      • j says:

        wow! WOW WOW WOW
        been there.
        row, paddle, sail
        just get going…….it gets better…………honest

  8. Claudia says:

    Merry Christmas, Karen!
    Thanks for all your wonderful inspiring and hilarious posts!
    (…and I’d really like to know what’s written on the coasters, BTW…)

  9. Miss Chris SA says:

    Have a Mgherry Christmas full of laughter and joy! Thank you for all the inspiration and laughter!

  10. Mary W says:

    Appears you really need this week off. I thought I’d check in since it is really late and I just finished wrapping the 2 special presents that were getting Art of Doing Stuff treatment. They turned out so cute. I did the little truck with a tree and tracks in snow. I made a snow angel and made initials in a heart drawn in the snow. I also added some yellow spray behind the trees with footprints going to it. I know someone will say you should have put yellow snow and I will be ahead of the game. Took my balls out of the freezer and frosted on my nutmeg logs. Have you ever gotten balls and logs in one sentence and had it be actually decent? I used rum in the logs and italian sausage in the tiny cheese balls. Have a wonderful week off and indulge when appropriate, necessary or just too fun.

  11. Grammy says:

    Merry Christmas. Happy New Year.

    Rest up. Have fun. We’ll see you on the other side of the holidays.

    Joy to the World. Really — wouldn’t that be great?

  12. Karen says:

    Merry Christmas Karen…..
    You so silly girl……
    After my own heart…..

    I can always count on you for a few giggles when things get hard.

    Hope the New Year brings ALL of us better times. Lord knows we all could use a little help these day’s…..

    Karen ?

  13. Ardith says:

    Merry Christmas, Ms. Merriment, and have a Happy New Year. Cheers, Ardith

  14. TucsonPatty says:

    Can I steal your card sentiment? Merry Christmas asshead, indeed.
    I love the inside: filled with the F word…have a fantabulous , fun- filled , fruitful and frugal vacation, my friend. ; )

  15. Violet says:

    I’m usually trapped in halls with nuts (ie family).
    Merry merry and tanks for them larfs.
    I’m glad I stumbled on you and your own brand of nuttiness, it’s very Australian.
    Xx

  16. Ronda says:

    Merry Christmas Karen, and thanks for the inspriration and hilarity … and best wishes to everyone for a year full of giggles and guffaws!

  17. Elaine says:

    Merry Christmas, Karen, and have an enjoyable break from technology and …. us!

    We’ll all be impatiently waiting for you come the New Year!!

  18. Joanne says:

    You are the best Karen – you know it, and I hope you get to do all the things you want to do while you are not writing posts. I’ll be waiting to hear all about it.

  19. Nancy Blue Moon says:

    Merry Christmas girlfriend…hugs for Cleo and Ernie…Thanks for another year of fun…Alpacas like to spit on people…FA-LA-LA-LA…Read a good book or two…I’ll miss you…

  20. jules says:

    Happy holiday lovely woman. Enjoy much cheese as we celebrate the birth of Cheesus, 🙂

  21. barbee says:

    And a happy New Year! We’ll miss you-but after the holiday hubub, I could use a break from being inspired.

  22. Paula says:

    Merry Christmas, Karen. Enjoy your well deserved holiday and I look forward to spending another year reading your posts. Much happiness and laughter to you and yours.
    Paula

  23. mia pratt says:

    Merry merry merry, merry merry. Uh, Christmas. I almost forgot there. Yes, have the merriest, hopefully fartless Christmas ever, and stuff yourself with bacon, which definitely does not taste like chicken, but is indeed the other white meat<:} You know we love you!!!

  24. Tiffany G says:

    Look how many of us don’t sleep at night! Karen – just know that it’s like a bit of Christmas morning every time I see a new post from you in my email. To be made to laugh & learn how to tackle something cool to do at the same time is truly a gift – and for that I thank you. Enjoy your much needed respite – Merry Christmas!

  25. Catherine says:

    Merry Christmass Karen, hope you and you family have a good one!

  26. Robert says:

    Merry Christmas Karen, and thank you for all the laughs you gave us this year. Also, may I ask how much is your cheese money?

  27. Jenny W says:

    Merry Christmas Karen, and I hope you have an Inspirational & Happy New Year 🙂

  28. Ruth says:

    Enjoy your break, Karen. *waves from JA*’

    My men and I will be hunkering down over here… ’tis the season for rain. Bye-bye drought. 🙂

  29. Tigersmom says:

    Merry Christmas, Karen!

    Thanks for all the free entertainment. Well, it would be free if it didn’t convince me (correctly, of course)that I need a rasp and a ricer and rings and ‘Maybe you touched your genitals’ hand sanitizer and a bunch of other items whose purchase I have yet to regret.

    And for those who like the hand sanitizer I found another hilarious gag gift for the fastidious pooper. They are called ‘Shittens’ and are patent pending disposable mittens. I’m not including a link but they are on Amazon.

  30. Maura says:

    Wishing you a Merry Christmas and health, laughter and tranquility for the New Year!
    Enjoy the break and pamper yourself.
    Thank you for making my Mondays, Wednsdays and Fridays start off with a smile!

  31. MaryJo says:

    Merry Christmas, Karen. You’ve inspired me to think about a technology fast; not sure I’ll do it, but I’m thinking about it anyway…
    See ya next year!
    Hugs

  32. Shana Beirne says:

    Merry Christmas! Edgar and I will be enjoying it together! (My scorpion named after your shelf spider, in case you forgot.) I hope you have a great week off!

  33. Denise says:

    You are truly my favorite find in 2015. You remind me of my sister with the chickens, gardening, and self-sufficiency. Your snarkiness reminds me of me. Welcome to the family! I hope you have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Can’t wait for the email notification in January telling me you survived the holidays and a new blog is available to start my morning off just right!

  34. Cred says:

    Fart math….. Hahahaha!

    Your cards are great! Enjoy your tech vacation and the whole f-word season!

  35. Ev Wilcox says:

    Merry Christmas Karen! Enjoy your fun time!

  36. marilyn says:

    lmao i have some cards like that and some relatives too! Merry Christmas Karen..to you and yours..always a blast to see whats up in the land of doing stuff!

  37. mickey says:

    Merry Christmas, Karen…and also to your family and your many followers.
    mickey

  38. Lucie says:

    Joyeux Noël, you lovely, crazy woman you.

  39. Melissa Leach says:

    Merry Christmas Karen. Enjoy your break, and your favorite f words. Can’t wait for you to hit the ground running in 2016. You never fail to amaze!

  40. Michelle says:

    Merry Christmas!
    Thank you for the year of great ideas and humor.
    Looking forward to year 2.
    Happy New Year!

  41. SuzyMcQ says:

    All the best! Thanks for the info, the highs and the lows and, especially, the laughter. You have added so much to all our lives and deserve the time off.

    Do the coasters say something about tampons and yogurt, perhaps?

  42. Sylvia says:

    Merry merry Karen and to all the folks that take the time to comment. Karen, your blogs are so much fun, but your fans are like the “mode” of your snow globe! See you all next year !

  43. Gingersnappo says:

    Karen, I discovered your blog just a couple of months ago, and BOY OH BOY, am I glad I did! So, like the rest of your rabid fans, I wish you a Merry Christmas and raise a glass to a zany 2016!

  44. jainegayer says:

    Note taken about the cheesy french onion soup. Merry Christmas and thank you for another year of fun posts while I drink my morning coffee.

  45. NinaMargoJune says:

    Sheesh. Denise (above) said everything I wanted to say! But I will add a very sincere Thank You for all the smiles, chortles, chuckles, snorts and guffaws from reading your great blog. Looking forward to the New Year, hoping you find joy and continued brilliance in the halcyon days ahead!

  46. Eileen says:

    Note to self: no drinking coffee while reading Karen’s blog. Results in much cleaning of computer screen and desk from snorting said coffee during laughing fit.
    Thanks for that Karen, and many f-words to you too! Looking forward to more messes in 2016 (I’m not a fast learner).

  47. Marion says:

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Enjoy your down time.

  48. Scott says:

    Have a Festive Christmas!

  49. Jacqui says:

    Merry merry Christmas Karen! I have SO enjoyed your posts this year. Loved your card. How do I get on your mailing list? My favourite ever Christmas card ever was the three wise men standing around the manger looking surprised. The caption read”It’s a girl!” I got that one from my pastor lol

    My family is up to 41 for Christmas morning breakfast this year. So I am off to find my calculator for the fart math! (You cracked me up on that one!)

    Enjoy your break!

  50. West Coast Nan says:

    Like the others I too wish you a Merry Christmas and a lovely break. Looking forward to more hilarity and useful information in 2016. You never fail to deliver…

  51. Lynn says:

    Wishing you a Very Merry Christmas an a Joyful New Year . May all your wishes come true . I know how it is to go tec free , it can be very liberating. We do it every time we go to the family farm , it is like getting fresh new batteries every time an we love it. Family , Fun , Fresh Air, Food, Friends of old all gather an laugh to the point we are falling out or off our chairs . It is what truly makes the Season for us . Merry Christmas one an all , Tis the Season to laugh be merry joyful of all .

  52. Suzanne says:

    Merry Christmas Karen! Joyeux Noël! Un gros merci pour les rires, les sourires et toutes les idées farfelues ou pratiques. Te lire est toujours le moment agréable de ma journée. All the best for the New Year. Read you in January.

  53. Luanne says:

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, Karen! Thanks for doing what you do – you surely do have game!

  54. Snugster says:

    I’m experiencing greens envy. The slender, minimalist wreath featured on your card (along with the sofa table garland, etc.) is the latest SHOUT. Is it dollar store or live?

    Thank you for your cheerful and helpful posts.
    Snugster

  55. Karin says:

    Merry Christmas to you and yours Karen. it’s such a joy to “know” you and be part of this amazing community.

    Merry Christmas to you, constant reader as well.

    See ya’ll back next year.

    Thank god you have an archive, that’ll keep the shivers down til you’re back :0B

  56. Jeannieb says:

    Merry Christmas Karen.
    May all your dreams come true.

  57. cathy says:

    Placing order for one of the sofas you design. Do not let me down.

  58. Safetydog says:

    Love the card! I hope you enjoy a restful, recharging, fulfilling week off. You will be missed by many. (However, my family is tired of hearing about “my Canadian friend, Karen”.) And anyone down South knows that “a herd” is used thus: “A herd you was fixin’ to go fishing.”

    So as to be all-inclusive, and/or not to offend anyone, happy non-specific winter holiday!

  59. Carey says:

    You’re to do list is insane. But even more insane is that I have no doubt you’ll accomplish it all. And I can’t wait to read all about it all year long! Happy Holidays, Karen! xo

  60. Yvonne says:

    Happy Holidays! You have brought light and laughter to my family and want to thank you for everything you do. Have fun with the alpacas, lol.

  61. Jan in Waterdown says:

    I truly hope your family appreciates you as much as we all do! Give yourself a big group hug from all of us, my friend. My appreciation of your generosity of spirit is boundless.
    Cheers from up the road!

  62. Martina says:

    I too have to say thank you for all your zaniness and inspired ideas. I am so glad I stumbled upon your blog (thanks Lee Valley). MerryChristmas to you and yours‼️?

  63. Colleen Banner says:

    Have a wonderful Holiday season Karen. I enjoy reading your posts so much.

  64. Darla says:

    Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!!

  65. Lesley on "The Mountain" says:

    Merriest of Christmases to you and yours! Looking forward to new posts in January! In the meantime, make sure to at least take note of any hilarity that happens without us; we want all the gory details, farts and all, because we live vicariously through you. Happy New Year!

    Lesley

  66. Jody says:

    Enjoy your well deserved rest. Thank you for a fun and enlightening 2015. Looking forward to the shenanigans in 2016.

  67. maggie van sickle says:

    Have a Blessed and Merry Christmas Karen and all the best in the New Year. Let me know how the cat waltzing lessons go and enjoy your family who sound as nuts as ours.

    Cheers
    Maggie

  68. Miriam Mc Nally says:

    Merry Christmas Karen!
    Thank you for all the wonderful posts, the funny ones and the useful ones, esp.the book suggestions. I got 2 copies of Sous Chef for gifts, hope they like them.
    Have a good holiday, low tech is good!

  69. Benjamin says:

    As usual you got me to belly laugh when you said you were teaching your cats to waltz and relabeling your pantry in Japanese braille. Have an extra eggnog and relax through the rest of the year, you’ve earned it. Merry Christmas kiddo. xoxo

  70. Rachel says:

    Thanks for everything you share Karen. I’m so busy trying almost everything you’ve recommended this Christmas. One of the best things I did this year was finding your blog. Have a warm and wonderful Christmas filled with all the blessings you deserve!

  71. Rose says:

    Merry Christmas Canadian! There is something quite special about you. Your zest for living and the joy you bring to everyday life is contagious. Thank you for sharing your gifts with us. God’s blessings on you and yours.

  72. Can't put my name on this comment says:

    This a bit long, but I wanted to let you know how thankful I am to you.
    I remember reading your blog at this time last year….you made me laugh at a very lonely time in my life. My husband was going away all the time and had been for about 6 months. I loved getting a reply from my friend Karen to a comment I left. It made me feel someone was out there. It made me happy. Then on my birthday (jan. 4th), I found out why I was alone so much. My husband was keeping company with someone else. My heart broke in a million pieces.
    I didn’t have the energy to even read your posts. I think I started looking at a few maybe sometime in the Spring. It was hard to smile, I just didn’t have it in me. Sometimes it was even hard to read funny happy posts because it reminded me how sad I was.
    But you inspired me. When your fella left, you kept going, you made us laugh and taught us things. You didn’t stop living. So, maybe I could do that too.
    It’s coming up on a year…I’m slowly coming around.
    Then I read this post and I really laughed out loud, actually laughed! And, that alone has made me very grateful. I think I’m going to be ok.
    So even though I’ve made no comments all year, I’m here, I’m supporting you, and I’m grateful.
    Merry Christmas Karen!
    PS I wish there was a “like” button on each persons comment box. I read all of them and they make me smile. So thank you to all of Karen’s readers…wishing you all A very Merry Unspecific Holiday Season! ?

    • Karen says:

      You, my dear … are going to be better than O.K. Once you remember how to laugh the complete healing comes pretty quickly. The same way “a body in motion stays in motion”, a body in sadness stays in sadness. And therefore …. a body in laughter stays in laughter. You’ve made it as far as I can tell. 😉 ~ karen!

  73. Heather says:

    Merry Christmas, Karen. Enjoy your days off.

  74. Margaret K. says:

    Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, Karen! And to all of your readers. too. May the ones gong through tough times find the new year happier.

  75. Penny says:

    Wishing Karen and her huge ‘family’ of readers and commenters a Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays or Cool Yule according to their preference.
    Thanks for your posts, Karen, always entertaining and frequently useful. My word your bacon wraps are wonderful! See you next year.

  76. Lizzie says:

    Karen! Enjoy your break! Try not to eat too many snowglobes a la mode, they’ll colonize! And I’m not sure it’s the kind your hippie friend keeps telling you will make you regular or your eyeballs shine or give you the ability to repel zombies. At least if you do, make sure they’re all architecturally compatible. You know those mid mods are always talking trash about the victorians… you wouldn’t want them starting shit in your stomach. Wrong organ.

  77. Joslynne says:

    Love the card – my mom would have a fit if she got it! Outside angry, but really giggling inside!!

    To add to all the merry greetings from all…have a wonderful break and looking forward to more great laughs next year!!

    Thanks always!!

  78. Heather J Tebbutt says:

    Hi Karen, I found your blog through the Lee Valley newsletter in Aug. of 2015. We have a store here in London, On., my favourite place to shop… I read your blog and readers comments daily…totally awesome…great ideas…wonderful sense of humour.
    Season’s Greetings & a Happy New Year to you and your family & to everyone around the world who read this blog.

    Thanks
    Heather J.

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Heather! Have a great holiday. (I myself just ate my second bowl of French Onion soup after everyone left and am looking forward to B.E.D., lol) Right back at it tomorrow with the family breakfasts, lunches and dinners. ~ karen!

  79. Laura Bee says:

    A very merry to you Karen! I finally had some inspiration for my BIL’s gift & I am waiting for the glue to set. And I was able to get to my sister’s place today & bake! Now it feels like Christmas. On vacation too until the 4th, I am lucky my new job is closed until then (for the first time ever in their 25+ years!) I put my Etsy shop on vacation mode too. I was about to snap with everything that needed to be done. Tomorrow morning after the presents & pancakes (maybe waffles) I will be able to relax. Sort of.
    Thanks for all the laughs & showing us what can be done if we just put our minds to it.

    • Karen says:

      I’m glad you figured something out for his present Laura! If I were you I’d have French toast. It’s my doughy breakfast food of choice. ~ karen!

  80. Mindy says:

    Merry Christmas from Portland, Oregon. The beard capital of the world.

  81. Amie M says:

    Boost, iPad and a chamber pot.

    Merry Ho Ho!

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