How’d you get here?

Hi. My name’s Karen. I came to The Art of Doing Stuff because I wanted a creative outlet where no one would tell me what I could or couldn’t say.

That’s how *I* got to The Art of Doing Stuff.

I’m always curious about how you got here. I know most of you probably won’t remember how you got here. It’s not like it was a life changing moment for you like the birth of your child or the delivery of your first washer and dryer.

But I’m sure some of you remember how you happened upon The Art of Doing Stuff. Whether it was from one of my DIYs on Design*Sponge, or a Google search for how to cure a yeast infection.

You might be curious about why I’m curious about how you got here. Well for two reasons actually. The first being, I’m just plain curious. It’s my nature. Sometimes it works for me sometimes it’s an embarrassment to those around me. If I’m in a restaurant and I like their dishes I have no problem lifting the plate over my head to see if it’s marked on the bottom or tracking down the owner to ask them. I ask questions, peek in people’s windows and never stop wondering about stuff. You don’t wanna be anywhere near me when there’s a room full of men with kilts on.

But the second reason I’d like to know how you got here is because it might help me in building up the readership of The Art of Doing Stuff.


You might be able to let me in on information I had no idea about. Like maybe I have a bigger Youtube following than I thought. Or maybe most of you reading this came here from Pinterest.

As a blogger, I have some idea of how people get to my site through things like Google Analytics, which is a site that analyzes all of your website data including how people came to your site, how long they stayed and how many pages they viewed. Don’t worry. I have no idea who the people are, just general information like the city the views came from. And whether you’re wearing your underwear inside out.

So if you remember, let me know how you came to this site AND … why’d you come back?   Do you like learning stuff?  Or is it the writing (kay, not the writing of this particular post which is verging on the dullest post I’ve ever slammed out).

This isn’t an Oh, Karen!  You’re so GREAT post.  Because you know I am, I know I am and everyone I tell knows I am.  What this is, is figuring out how to make the site better for you and for me.  Karen.  The Great One.  Wayne Gretzky stole that from me by the way and we’re still in litigation over it.  I’ve promised to knit his daughter a baggy head to toe Icelandic sweater if he promises to drop the lawsuit.

Have a good weekend!


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  1. Dani says:

    I was looking at another person’s blog and they recommended checking you out…Unfortunately, I don’t remember that blogger & I’m sure I no longer “follow” them. You’re fun & interesting…always something different.

    re: Pinterest — I haven’t joined because I’m afraid I’ll never get off the computer — because I’ll be “collecting” pins FOREVER. 🙂

  2. dana says:

    I remember exactly how I got here. Our dryer crapped out. Hubby mentioned it could be a fuse because there were no symptoms before it crapped out. No squeaking, etc, burning smell. Nothing. I started searching online and that’s how I found your blog. The first one I read came up when I searched for dryer fuse issues. It was the one where you replaced a fuse for cents and found some cents behind the dryer. While hubs slaved away fixing the dryer I read your blog posts. By the way, it wasn’t a fuse. It was the ball thingy that holds the drum on had worn down. And I have been a reader ever since.

  3. Jen says:

    I came in via Pinterest. That’s how I stumble upon a lot of the blogs I read.

    I know it was one of the how to make… something. I draw the blank there. I think it was yogurt.

    However, I keep coming back because I like the way you write, explain things, and so on. I like learning, (hence my getting an MBA), and I like DYI, I like decor. (I work selling lighting, so I love looking at design.)

  4. Jean says:

    Saw an article online about when you redid your house. Checked out your blog and I was hooked.

  5. ruth says:

    if I can remember I’ll let you know. All I remember is I checked out your blog and spent the whole Christmas season reading the previous posts. And it’s at least three or four years ago. Might have been a reference from The Nester blog.

  6. Mel says:

    I think I found you on Pinterest while researching outdoor lighting and your outdoor globes popped up. I came back because you’re so freakin’ hilarious (even though my sense of humour has taken a dramatic decline since reaching my 38th week of pregnancy…).

  7. ruth says:

    Oh I stay because you hilarious and you do stuff I like.

  8. Dana says:

    It was the coop. I really, really want to build a coop. The kids keep trying to bring home the chicks that they hatch in their classrooms. Unfortunately, the bears really want chickens too, so the plan has to include very sturdy electric fencing, and you haven’t written a post on that yet. You’re most welcome to try it out here, in my yard, with the bears.
    I keep coming back because you keep posting things I like to read, or didn’t know I needed to know until the next week, when we needed to patch the drywall, for example.
    I also think you’d fit right in with the bookclub, if you’re ever near Vancouver, stop by.

  9. Kaaren says:

    I found you via Design Sponge. I have stayed because I love your sense of humor–and I have learned some cool stuff!

  10. Lynne says:

    I think, if my crappy memory serves me, I found you after watching you on Steven and Chris and probably googled you. Maybe. Possibly. Let’s just say I did. And I’m glad I did. So there.

  11. Louise says:

    I got here after Betty mentioned your blog at a quilt class and I’ve been following your blog ever since. It’s interesting, often funny, and I enjoy reading it.

  12. Ann says:

    Yes, it was the infamous yeast infection frozen yogurt you tube or Google, I can’t remember. I stay because you crack me up and your posts sounds like my friends and I talking. I almost peed myself after the pedicure post and my heart hurt when the Fella bailed. Yeah, you know it, but it needs to be stated again…you rock!

  13. Teresa J says:

    I saw your article in the magazine, either Style at Home or Chatelaine, can’t quite remember. about redoing your backyard by yourself. Thought you were either crazy or had guts, now I know you are both! 🙂 As a divorced by choice mom and homeowner I salute you!

  14. Laura Watt says:

    Corrine McDermott introduced us on twitter, and she was right, we needed to meet! I met her at “so you have a new baby and are now totally isolated from the world” group.

  15. Erin says:

    I was pursuing Pinterest and found a pin from your blog showing how to save tomato seeds. I read a couple more posts and appreciated your humor and the variety of interesting topics.

  16. Ella says:

    Pinterest image of the coop! Then I saw your home makeover buttons on your site. The visuals hooked me; and then your writing–funny and informative! I also just like to do stuff and have similar interests. After I saw the coop and the home makeover, I read 2 years of your blog entries over the course of a couple of weeks. I now read you every day!

  17. victoria says:

    My friend told me about your blog because we both like diy stuff. Love the diy!!!!! ♥

  18. Katie says:

    I started reading years ago. It was either from Nester about how you re-did your house OOOOR I feel like it could’ve been one of your dollar store craft posts (which I think you should bring back btw). But it’s been so long. You helped me brainstorm how to make a bird x-mas tree topper in 2010… your willingness to do things like that for little ol me is what makes me stick around.

  19. Roses Kruvand says:

    I don’t know how I stumbled in here but I stayed because you’re so funny.

  20. Odette says:

    I got here because of a friend who followed you. She couldn’t stop talking about you and your site.. “Oh Odette, you’ve got to read her….” I got curious and so I went. I ended up reading your blogs because it was very enjoyable and there’s always new to learn. I’ve also learned to make ‘homemade’ yogurt from you and I’ve been making it ever since. Thank you!

  21. Susie Heller says:

    This is Susie who hates to cook.
    I started reading your blog before the chickens, after the legs on the log, before the back yard was redone. When you had the old light globes with Christmas lights inside in the flower beds or maybe with the do it yourself fire pit, which is still waiting for me to finish gluing it together. I love to make/re purpose things and quirky humor and was soon hooked on this crazy Canadian who even had folks send in pictures of mail boxes! I read all the cooking things just for the laughs even knowing I will never have or want a garden or love cooking. I do, live in the country and want to have chickens. I cried when your little one died!
    I think I Googled making things and you popped up or maybe saw your home in the Canadian Living magazine.

    My son went to University in Canada, married a wonderful girl from Nova Scotia and never returned. (We live in Washington State in a minute town, Winthrop) I send them and my two adorable grand kids a lot of US stuff so they will remember they are also US citizens. Anyway Maybe I saw your article with the cool Ikea Light and fur on chair magazine article while visiting Vancouver and subscribed. I have loved every article, except when the Fella left…damn him…. and continue to read your blog each day. Best to you. I like you better than Centsational Girl even though you credited her with helping you. I am sure she is wonderful, but not as funny. I need fun and laughter as much as water. Susie

  22. Jamie Lynn says:

    nope, I don’t remember exactly how I got here. However, oddly enough, I remember that when I did get here, I was immediately sucked into the vortex that is Karen and I read a good 8 months worth of posts, one after another. And I remember that I commented on one post, somewhere about halfway through, and no I don’t remember which one either, but I do know that I mentioned in that comment how I got here. So, technically you could go back through all your old posts and find out. 😉 I’ve been a subscriber for about a year now so you can start there. Good luck. Report back and let me know where I came from. 🙂

    PS – I’m glad I did get here, however the hell I did. I freaking love you.

    • Karen says:

      Jamie Lynn – October 3rd, 2012 “Also, i just happened upon your blog tonight, about 5 hours ago (do i remember where i came in from? not anymore!), and have been going through your posts ever since, starting back in mid-2010… (glad i found a link to a recent post which led me to this one!) you’re HILARIOUS and i am definitely your newest, giggling follower! you rock!!!” 😉 ~ karen

      • Jamie Lynn says:

        Ok then! You are too much Karen! 🙂 So I guess I don’t remember where I came from. Now *I’m* curious!! Damn!!

        • Liz says:

          This sounds like me… I don’t know when and where, but when it happened, I couldn’t stop clicking and reading and laughing and learning! I called my sister immediately to tell her that I found her new favorite blog. I’ve recommended you to many friends since 🙂

  23. Christina B. says:

    Not very helpful but I found out about you from my mom, not sure where she found you and your site. I stay because you are funny, smart, a great teacher, and just plain awesome!! I always enjoy your posts and usually learn something new and interesting! Plus I live in somewhat the same general area as you so I recognize a lot of places you mention which is cool!

  24. Sherry says:

    The light globes on Pinterest got me here and I love the way you write. And the variety of topics. And the “can do” attitude. And reading your posts is a lot like a good conversation with a friend. Go girl!

  25. Pat says:

    Saw the article about your house re-do in Style at Home awhile back, when you bought that couch/sofa that started your whole house change and decided to check you out. Ended up reading all your category posts. It’s been nothing but fun and free info. since then. I often share your blog verbally with a friend cuz she doesn’t like to read blogs. She refers to you as my “blog friend”!

  26. Ramona says:

    It’s Lynne Knowltons fault. Somehow, someway, her blog brought me to you. I stay because you talked me in to chickens, I’m also remodeling a kitchen, love the gardening stuff and your unbelievable creativity. You are me, only funnier!!! And I love your oh-so-random Oscar statues! Don’t know why those stick with me, but they do. I love that you post so often! I wish Lynne did, but she’s got stuff right now. STUFF. (Thank you, Lynne, for the better than Baily’s recipe! I enjoyed it all winter, and even found special bottles for it for next winter. Yes. Bottles, with an ‘s’. I will need multiples.) It’s just L-O-V-E Karen… That’s why I stay…

  27. Valerie says:

    Because I live rurally and there is not the availability of tradesmen or handy type persons available, I end up doing the oddest of jobs around this home; everything from painting ceilings with rollers attached to broom handles, refinishing logs with grinders, repairing appliances, making jams and jellies etc. Once about three years ago I accessed your site when I was embarking on a repair adventure. I think it had to do with a washing machine or a dryer, I don’t remember exactly. After visiting your site regularly for a month or more I was so impressed by the ease and humour with which you explained a variety of issues that I decided to subscribe. You reach a wide array of individuals because your life and times reflect and are replete with a wide array of interests. And always you appoint everything with a genuine human touch.

  28. Pam says:

    Well, it’s been a couple of years so I don’t recall exactly, but I’m pretty sure I saw your blog in an article titled something like ‘Great blogs everyone should read’ and it had like 20 blogs. I checked out almost all of them and got addicted to yours and two others. I’ve recommended your blog to many friends and I’m going to keep scanning the comments to see if one of them gives me a shout out. 😉

    • Bobbi says:

      Pam…what are the other two ?

      • Pam says:

        Bobbi- One is called The Everywhereist which is kind of a travel blog by a woman who has a lovely narrative style, an adorable husband and an addiction to cupcakes. And this interesting, funny blog called By Ken Burns. He is a television writer and radio host and spent years writing for MASH, Cheers and other shows. Check ’em out!

  29. Laura says:

    I wanted to make Anijitos and googled to find a recipe… I found uncle shifty’s recipe and couldnt get over how funny the post was and how well it was written. I clicked around your site and fell in love with your house makeover, and your backyard makeover. I keep coming back because your posts are hilarious, useful and genuine. I read every day (night) and always look forward to it. I always read the comments too — I like that you actually respond to them — and I really feel that your site is a place for intelligent, interesting people to converge. As someone said yesterday, Thanks for being one of the best parts of the internet, as someone said yesterday.

  30. Anna says:

    I googled or searched pinterest for how to grow garlic and found your post on how to plant it. Somehow from there I got to your post on scapes, and after seeing you wearing them on your head I knew I was a reader for life. Over the next two weeks I think I read every single post on your blog.

    I come back every day because I love your humor and I love learning how to DIY things around the house.

  31. Sakina says:

    We recently renovated our house, and I must have found your blog on pinterest. I’m a new reader of your blog…only started reading it about 2 months ago. I get your emails at about 6am each morning in Johannesburg, South Africa. And I start my day smiling whilst reading off my phone in one hand, and mug of coffee in the other! Thank you.

  32. Deb says:

    Oh, the light globes waaaay long ago, I think from Design Sponge. That was pure genius. I even used the idea at home and still use them. The second thing that sticks in my rattly brain is the video on how to open a wine bottle with a shoe and a tree. I’ve been hooked since those two posts. Worse than crack, I tell ya, but not nearly as health hazardous.

  33. Therese says:

    I Googled ‘Contemporary Chicken Coop’ and you came up first. I loved what you’d done, and your attitude to doing things yourself. That was 4 years ago and I’ve been a follower ever since. I love your writing, how your posts can make me snort, and how much your readers love you. Your daily posts make me feel as if I’ve chatted to a hilarious friend for a few minutes each day.

    • Dana says:

      Same here about the same time, too! I had just done a tour of urban chicken coops and was looking for a great coop design. Voila, Karen! Been an avid reader since.

  34. Lin says:

    I’m a handy kind of grrl and I believe I found you by way of one of your DIY projects. Don’t ask which one cuz it was a long, long time ago and my memory is only good for one ‘long time ago’. I’ve stayed because of your off the wall, sidewise slant to the world wisdom and humour. Also for your sometimes great and unique DIY’s…so there ya have it.

  35. Margaret K. says:

    How I found you: the light globes or the dollar store mirror plant holders on Pinterest when I was looking for projects to do with my grandkids. Read back through all your articles and been reading ever since.
    You have a superb feel for the right balance of humor, seriousness, and length, as well as the variety of subjects in which I have at least some interest. Some blogs I have wandered through go on and on and on instead of getting to the point. And while I am OK with a bit of – umm – somewhat risqué language, I don’t care for blogs that have cuss words in every sentence. Sorry to go on so long, but you did want feedback on what keeps us here, as well as what brought us here.
    I am a gardener, and cook, and DIYer, but no chickens. Although I enjoy reading about your chickies. Hope to be reading your posts for a long, long time.

  36. Agnes says:

    I don’t remember how I found you, but my earliest memory was of the tampon popcicles…you were so charming I couldn’t stay away. I look forward to reading your posts everyday- and when I know my day is too busy to read them without being rushed, I save them up and binge read all in one evening 🙂

  37. Kristin S. says:

    I’m pretty sure I came from Studio G. They have a resources page, and I was bored. I came back because your writing makes me laugh. I don’t find it too condescending, referential, or cutesy, and that’s rare. You also had some DIYs that didn’t seem ridiculously expensive or facile.

  38. Allison says:

    I didn’t know how to fold a fitted sheet … so I Googled something like video folded fitted sheet. I saw your second version of how to fold a fitted sheet but it didn’t take on the first try and proved a bit harder than I liked. So I dropped it. But the next week when I folded my sheets and I was in better spirits so I Googled it again but got pissed when I didn’t immediately find the antler lady (you) I had found before. It took a bit of digging again and when I found you I bookmarked your blog and studied that video until I got it. I think of your blog every week now when I fold my sheets and wonder what other things you are up to. I now have your blog in my facebook feed but sometimes I find your blog when I’m randomly Googling things I want to do. (self leveling cement, gardening, etc) Lately though I’ve been searching your blog for things I’m currently working on to see if you’ve written anything about it. <3

  39. Kim from Milwaukee says:

    I’m trying to remember the first post of yours I read….I think it was your pond reno on Design Sponge and I was enthralled by your energy to take on such a huge project, and inspired by your DIY spirit. I was really hooked by the ‘falling down the stairs’ post…your sense of humour reminds me a lot of my Mom who passed on when she was 49 and was also Canadian..newfie actually. You have her gumption, and I think she would have been a chum of yours.

    Reading your blog pushes me to be courageous and complete the projects I dream of…ok, start the projects and hopefully finish them! And it’s crazy but every post is something want to do…I nearly died when you got chickens, living in the city…exactly what I dream of doing.

    I wish I was your neighbor….maybe I could borrow your saw?

  40. Robin C. says:

    Hi Karen,
    I got to you via another blog – maybe Censational Girl, but I can’t remember for sure – just very glad I found your blog!

  41. Sabrina says:

    I’m fairly certain one of your recipes was posted on Foodgawker or a DIY was on Craftgawker. I went through a phase where I was on there every day looking up new recipes, a few bloggers I would read through, but most I didn’t. Yours, I did. All of them. And I’ve been back at lady 3x weekly since.

  42. kelly says:

    I think I followed you back here after you left a comment on another blog.

  43. Veronica says:

    I think it was a couple of years ago on The Nester. I keep reading because of your sense of fun and the fact that you are not afraid to tackle any project.

  44. Rosey says:

    I think I found you from another blog showing off your new look for your home. I remember your big portrait in your dining room and liked her. And you made me laugh and so I subscribed. I love a good laugh. I started following you while living in Kansas City and now I live in Idaho. I’m trying my hand at gardening and love making my house a home. Your posts are great–I learn something while I chuckle. It’s a win-win. 😉

  45. Bridget P. says:

    I found you through the bloggies, or some other award you were nominated for. I was looking through all the nominees and ended up staying because I liked your voice (I like the snark!) and because you were talking about things I wasn’t finding anywhere else.

  46. Colleen says:

    I think it was random blog hopping, but I remember the dollar store craft ideas… And loving the fact that I’d stumbled upon a blogger from Canada. I subscribe through a feed reader, and have now for, a couple years? Maybe more…

  47. Nicole says:

    I read an article about you in the Hamilton Spectator that mentioned your blog and I decided to check it out. I don’t remember what the article was about or what posts I read at the time that got me hooked. I’m interested in all of your subject matter from DIY to chickens and find your writing very entertaining. I think it’s just a bonus that I’m local and already shopped at some if your sources. I eagerly check out new sources that you reference and know that I’m in the same gardening zone but would probably have kept coming back if you were across the continent.

  48. Vicki says:

    I think my sister sent me a link to your site, but I can’t remember what the post was about. I was hooked by definitely the first paragraph, and subsequently started reading old posts after old posts, and have followed ever since. LOVE your wit. Quick and sharp – cracks me up every time. Your style is unlike any other DIY blogs out there I’ve read. I do read a handful of other blogs too, and they can be interesting, fun and informative, but they’re all pretty “safe”. You know when you laugh so hard that no sound comes out but only tears? Like the laughing equivalent to a dry-heave, only enjoyable and you want it to happen again. It’s just fabulous.

  49. Edith says:

    I’m pretty sure it was through The Nester. I love that you’re so curious and independent and stubborn and brave. A capable no-nonsense survivor, with a good sense of humor. Much like me 🙂 You would have been a great frontier woman.

  50. judy says:

    It might have been your Herculean remake of your entire yard-yard doesn’t convey the monumental effort put forth that resulted in something so stunning I couldn’t believe that a woman who looked about the size of a 13 year old girl could have accomplished given her entire life! Anyone who was that accomplished and incredibly witty would have my undivided attention 4ever! Also your blog titles are very good-intriguing ,irreverent and sometimes racy-that always draws in readers-kinda like The Enquirer but with way more class.

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