I took your advice.
NOW look what’s happened.

My kitchen, which has been in the process of being renovated since around the same time toast was invented, is getting nearer completion. But still isn’t complete.

If someone had told me 10 months ago when I started this that I’d still have an unfinished kitchen in February of 2014, I would have shot them in the eye. Because clearly that person would have had some sort of inoperable brain tumour that was clouding their thinking. Poor soul. Bang, bang.

It’s been a longgggg year full of endless unpleasant surprises. The neverending kitchen renovation, the fella ran away, I had to take on a lot of extra jobs to make more money and at one point during my renovation I had to pee in a bucket. Plus a cutworm killed all my corn on the cob plants.

I’m over everything and feeling good, but I really haven’t felt nice and calm and relaxed for almost a year.

So I thought I should just forget the kitchen, forget the mess, forget all the responsibilities I think I have and do something FUN for myself. My sister with the pink tool belt suggested taking badminton with her and I’m considering that. My sister that only watches movies with dead people in them suggested I move to Italy to blog. Um …

Then a couple of weeks ago a few of my readers suggested I might benefit from a spa day. Just take some time off and go visit a spa.

Now, I’m not really a spa kind of girl because I’m so hyper. I can’t stand the thought of sitting and relaxing and getting my nails done. But maybe that’s the problem. Maybe I’m nuts. Maybe going to a spa is EXACTLY what I need because it’s exactly what I think I don’t need. You can’t trust someone who doesn’t know how to relax to make a decision about how to relax. We’ll always pick the wrong thing.

If given the choice between a massage and digging their own swimming pool the unrelaxer will go with the swimming pool every time. Anything that involves a jackhammer will always win.

Knowing I can’t be trusted with my own judgement, I decided to go with the judgement of you the readers and check myself into a spa. And then I changed my mind. I’m really just not a spa girl.

However, the basic premise of your advice I did take. I just need to sit down and relax for a minute.

In front of the Buddha.

In Thailand.


Don’t worry. Betty’s paying.

Pink toolbelt girl skipped badminton for it …

And the other decided she could skip a few Jimmy Stewart movies for a while.

Betty, both my sisters and I am in Thailand for two weeks. It took 24 hours to fly here.

I’ll be posting sporadically over the next 2 weeks (see above paragraph on how I can’t be trusted with making the right decision when it comes to relaxing) about our adventures in Thailand.

Also if you don’t follow me on Twitter, Facebook and especially Instagram sign up now. I’ll be Instagramming parts of the trip. You can see pictures of what we’re all doing and comment on it too!

Now if you’ll excuse me I see a massage table with my name on it.


  1. Kate says:

    How fabulous! My sister and s-i-ls and I have done this with my mom a few times. Nothing as exotic as Thailand, but a weekend getaway here and there to reconnect with each other and recharge ourselves. I always come back happier and saner. Eat lots of wonderful food and enjoy yourself! We’ll see you when you get back!

  2. Shauna says:

    WOW! How awesome for you! This is the second time in two days I’ve audibly gasped. The first time was last night when I watched the first episode of the second season of House of Cards. Have a great and relaxing time:)

  3. Maryanne says:

    You look MARVELOUS!

    • toekneetoni says:

      I agree with Maryanne, even in just that back shot you look fantastic! Congrats to you and the girls for making more memories together. I’ve said it before, but I have to say it again … I LOVE BETTY!!!

  4. Debbie says:

    Wow, I think this is your best post yet as you are giving to yourself. Wait – this isn’t another Joanie and Chachi cruise fake to the left, is it? If not, please have a wonderful time. My dad lived in Thailand for many years. Um, let’s not get into that. I wish I could be an elf and have your kitchen finished for you when you get back.

    Enjoy the trip and your sisters!

  5. Carey says:

    Yay, that’s great! But I have to admit, I’m a little concerned for you. What if this trip changes everything, and you’re not the same unrelaxer we’ve come to know and love? Haha, well, what’s done is done, there’s not turning back now. Might as well enjoy, relax, and remember to breathe. OM! xo

  6. Leslie says:

    Wow!!! Well done!!!!! I’m so proud of you. And Betty! And the other sisters!

  7. Jenny B says:

    My husband and I took our kids to Thailand two years ago, and it was the best trip of our lives. It has since become my favorite country to visit on earth. The combination of Buddhism and spirit worship (like nowhere else on earth), the people, the temples, the food, the beach! Just whatever you do do NOT drink the water or brush your teeth with it! My husband thought since we were staying at a “nice” hotel the no water drinking didn’t apply – uh, no, that’s why they provide bottles of water everyday to brush your teeth! Have a great life changing trip, hope the political situation there is stable enough to not screw up your trip, and soak it all in. My teenage daughter ended up going to a week long elephant conservation camp while we were there and helping with the elephants – so cool. If you’re near Chiang Mai highly recommend visiting one!

  8. Sally says:

    Holy crap!! That’s a long way to go to relax. I know many people who have traveled to Thailand and they all say it is a life-changing experience. I hope it will be as up-lifting for you as it has been for them. Really. You’ll come back a new woman. Not that there was anything wrong with the old one. Not that you’re old.

    Never mind….just have fun.

  9. Alicia Herron says:

    GOOD FOR YOU! Eat all the thai food you can. I’ve had family visit and LOSE weight eating like a champs! You deserve this!

  10. Sarah says:

    Have fun and safe travels! :)

  11. Renee A says:

    Shhh…. Now that Karen is out of the Western Hemisphere…. Please consider nominating the site for the Homey Award (best Home projects and DIY blog) on Apartment Therapy. This is how I first found The Art…, and more nominations means more traffic for Karen. Plus, it is just a darn great blog!

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