I’m not back. But the Chickens are.

Well hello all.  It’s me.  Karen.   From The Art of Doing Stuff.  You may remember me.

Regular posts will be returning in a week or so.  What with me being gone and Charles in Charge being cancelled, I was worried you were getting bored.  So I have some entertainment for you.

I’m not back, but the chickens are.

You may notice the large box with the chicken in it just to the right.  You can come back here any day until my return and click on the box to watch video of the chickens live.


Lest you think watching chickens isn’t as entertaining as my regular posts, I would like to point out that chickens eat food off each others faces.

The camera will be up from 9 a.m. until 9 p.m. E.S.T.  Maybe.  Probably.  Give or take a few hours.  Shit, I don’t know.  Quit bugging me.

Enjoy and see you soon.


  1. Ritz says:

    Hello Karen,
    Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to accept all of these warm and fuzzy emanations.
    See you soon.

  2. Maggie V says:

    Dear Karen

    Have walked in your shoes so I get it but the sun will shine again on you that I know for sure. Chin up take heart . You may not forget but you will get by all of this in time as for the chickies I am looking after my 3 Grand kids for the summer all under 6 so chicks video will have to wait.

  3. Lesley Williamson says:

    Take care of yourself and take your time. Will be here waiting patiently, and watching the chickens, whenever you’re ready. Hugs.

  4. Nicole Kemer says:

    I can’t hold it in any longer…You say “his name was…”

    um, *was* ???????

    you won’t be blogging from cellblock B, I hope!

    Possibly the worst advice you’ll get but I’ll say it anyways because I don’t have a filter or don’t care to acknowledge the filter I do have:
    Drink. throw things. then drink some more. It’s probably not healthy but very therapeutic!

  5. Patti says:

    I like you! :D

  6. Ann Marie says:

    Love that you are back again…….

  7. Betsy says:

    Thanks Karen- Take all the time you need….the chickens will keep us company :)

  8. Pat says:

    I know we have all missed you and worried about you. As a friend said to me during my time of being in the same place you are, “You may not believe me and it does not seem like it is possible but things will get better, slowly but surely.” When I stopped replaying all those old scenes in my head and stopped asking “why”?, I started to heal. You just gotta go through all that stuff before you see the sunshine in your life.

  9. Jody says:

    Karen, I am so glad you are getting back on the horse–so to speak–and beginning to post your blog again. One step toward your new normal. I have been thinking of you often.

  10. Caroline from Texas says:

    Glad you’re “almost” back! You’ve been missed, my dear!

  11. Jacqui says:

    Good to see you again. We will all be right here waiting for you when you are ready. Big hug

  12. Elizabeth says:

    I knew you’d stay true to your motto! Sounds like you are figuring it out just fine. Glad to see you’re ‘back’.

  13. ruth says:

    So happy to see you!

  14. Manisha says:

    Thanks a lot, Karen. I’m going to have that stupid “Charlies in Charge” song in my head all day because of you. Despite that I’m glad you surfaced for a bit.

  15. mia pratt says:

    There is nothing that stops the pain, or the tears, or the incessant questioning about one’s self and every little thing you did or didn’t do just right…and the visions of one’s “ugly self”, that face in the mirror during moments of anger or indifference that pollute even the best relationships.

    But there is one thing that is constant in you, and that is the immense power of your own creativity, that sailboat of fire that can take the cruelest pain from the hollows of your heart and set it free upon the wind. In pain it is often reduced to a flickering candle by cruel doubt and the echoes of the past. But the moment you breathe in the remembrance of that powerful creative force within you, that candle bursts into a flame, and the flame into a bonfire!

    Take what is swirling around like a tornado in your soul, and set it free. Build something in the rain, throw a giant canvas on the basement floor and heave paint at it – and as the power of your anger and your pain courses through you, your creativity will tame it, one day at a time, until wisdom and acceptance and the remembrance of who you are returns – who YOU are, alone in birth and alone in death. And with that remembrance, one day at a time, will come peace.

    You are a powerful warrior, and you know this. You are wounded, but not defeated. And remember, too, that peace is simply the absence of negative thought. Tame your mind a moment here, a moment there, with visions of the creative you, the beautiful you, the loving you – the empowered you. And one moment at a time, like laying a cobblestone road, you will build the road back to happiness again.

    It is the road women have walked since time began, the road that long line of amazing women ancestors that streams out behind you for eons all walked – the walk of loss, and of finding your way home again. They are at your back, you carry the seed of all of their hopes and desires, and the essence of all of their power – and so, you are not walking this painful walk alone. Remember them, look for them – restore their remembrance and their presence in your life – and in that remembrance, you will find your whole self again.

    Your life can be destroyed, but the essence of who you are in that long line of powerful women, cannot. Shift your eyes off of the man who is gone, and onto the women who still live on within you. In the details of their lives, the dreams staring back at you from their eyes in photos of lives long ended, you will find yourself again. And it will be a brand new self, whole and liberated, more powerful and happy and free than you ever imagined possible. I promise.

    You don’t have to post this, I understand<:}

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Mia – Oh hell, I don’t blame myself or anything I did or didn’t do for one miniscule second. So don’t you worry about that. I can take care of myself. Him? Well that’s another story, LOL. :)

      • Jcrn says:

        Wise words, Karen.

        One of the hardest lessons I’ve learned- and seen other friends learn- was not not to take blame for the loss of a relationship. At least, not always.

        Sometimes people just change – but in a way that blindsides you. I’ve been there, felt battered, and then found that my “one true love” wasn’t that at all.

        Unlike you, I did obsess over the “whys”” and felt like I’d “failed” . But, years later, he contacted me and apologized for being confused and uncertain back then . He stressed that it wasn’t about me. He regretted the pain he’d caused. By that time, I knew that it really wasn’t about me. But it felt good to know he felt regret.

        If someone with a crystal ball told me I’d end up in a 27 year- and counting -very fulfilling relationship only a short while after the guy I’d thought was my forever love left, , I think it might have helped immensely, especially when I was wracked with pain and doubt so intense that it was impossible to eat or sleep.m

        Sometimes it really true – – but very painful before realizing it – that it isn’t about you but more about the other person going through a search for..,,something. Who knows what…or why?

        I note this because I do think women ( in general, maybe not you) tend to think they can “fix” things. We take responsibility, when in reality even those we think we know can change, feel a loss of identity, and go on a different path – without really knowing why.

        This is always the risk in loving someone.for me, still worth it. And I’m hoping for you as all. In your own time.,

  16. Kat says:

    Ditto to what everyone else has already said!

  17. J9 says:

    Take care of yourself, Karen! We’ll still be here.

  18. Janet says:

    Hurry up and get well! Life is too short and your blogs are just too funny to be shutdown for long. We are having our State Fair next weekend and I get to judge chickens which I know nothing about except from your blog. Thank god the chicken cam is up! I will be watching. 0:

  19. Lynn says:

    You are loved!!

  20. Sandra says:

    Even though I’m a mother of two boys, sometimes I have to remind my two girls that boys have chicken brains and are therefore predisposed to doing dumb things. I often feel bad about saying such things about the chickens. Hah! both topics covered!

  21. toekneetoni says:

    Missing your wonderful words & wit. Hoping for you, cheering for you … patiently.

  22. Mickey says:

    Miss you. Just take one day at a time. We’ll all be here for you when you come back.

  23. Mary says:

    I have missed your snarky attitude and humorous posts. Hope you are doing ok and can’t wait for you to be back. <3

  24. Tigersmom says:

    Good to hear/read you again.
    I’m going to do some more clicking on your ads to help you buy extra chicken feed cause I’m betting the girls aren’t doin’ this for free. ; )

  25. Debbie says:

    Karen-You positively touch many lives through your blog – I hope it makes you feel good to know that so many of us are sending supportive thoughts your way. Hang in there.

  26. Feral Turtle says:

    Charles In Charge??? WTH. Well at least we have the chickens. We miss you Chickie!

  27. Sandy says:

    You have been missed! Take care of yourself.

  28. SuzyM says:

    From one chick to another

    miss you, think of you often, wish you all the best, hope you are okay and that your happy face, wit and joie de vivre will soon resurface….

  29. Langela says:

    It’s about time those chickens helped you. They needed to do something to earn their keep. They should have had their own site, “The Art of Doing Diddly Scratch”. :) Glad to “see” you.

    • Kris says:

      Karen – so sorry to hear your news – been there and it really is no fun, no fun at all. Be extra good to yourself and find people who will constantly tell you how wonderful you are.

      But this post “the art of doing diddly scratch” made me laugh out loud – you too, I hope.

  30. Sally Berbert says:

    Thank God. Been bored silly.

  31. Deb says:

    Thank God…..”The Art of Doing Stuff” is back in my inbox! My days can now be complete, again. I missed you!

  32. Gina S. says:

    Ahhh….chickens….heirloom tomato sammys….and the return of Karen….life is good….

  33. Lori says:

    Oh how it made me smile to see The Art of Doing Stuff in my inbox this morning. Good to hear from you….but take your time. Hugs!

  34. Meg says:

    The return of an old friend–incredibly good news. Take care of yourself.

  35. Susan M. says:

    Welcome Back… you have been missed.

  36. Mary Kay says:

    Hi Karen – <3 to you!!

  37. Suanne says:

    You don’t have to post this. It’s just for you. Just some observations I’ve had in my life. I have been where you are. It hurts like hell. Believe it or not, it WILL get better. Time will heal. You are cared about by many people. It hurts us all to know the pain you’re going through. Lean on your true friends and your family for awhile…that’s what they’re there for. Try to put that wonderful smile back on your face. We miss you.

  38. karol says:

    I’m pulling for you, Karen. Lots of things I could say, sappy quotes and all that stuff, but I won’t. If I have learned one thing from your blog, it’s that you are a survivor. Bless you.

  39. Su says:

    godspeed…. been there.. sucks

  40. Ian Warrington says:

    Hi Karen
    Glad to see that you’re ok, be well.

  41. Laura Bee says:

    Get OUT of my brain! I had this idea too, but did not want to BUG you. All that & a mind reader.

  42. Lynn says:

    Good to see you at least surfacing, Karen! All the best to you.

  43. The Advicist says:

    Hope you’re slowly feel better. Take care (and I love the chicken cam!)

  44. Rondina says:

    Well, maybe it’s the middle of the night and that’s why I can’t find the chickens. I hope you are back to your regular self and posting about your interesting life soon. In the mean time, I hope to watch the chickens. In fact, what a great thing to do while I work. I’ll just set up the laptop next the the “main” computer and watch them while I procrastinate.

    That being said, we miss the chicken-coop woman down here in Texas and wish for your speedy return.

  45. Jay says:

    Look after yourself, Karen. And hello again to the chooks

  46. Cynthia says:

    good… for… you… it’s that simple.
    Feel weak, feel strong, feel it all. You have always demonstrated your humanity with your hardworking blog and now it’s time for you to take good care of yourself.
    Well, it’s time ALSO to let dear friends and family help you take good care of yourself.
    I will watch your chickens and look forward to seeing the missing one(s) try to come home to roost.

  47. Dagmar says:

    Wow since you’re not back Karen, may I congratulate your chickens on their innate ability to have the same wit and writing style that sounds identical to yours. May I for one say, you have done an incredible job, teaching and raising your feather babies. Incredible.

  48. KiwiKat says:

    Hello Chickies – hope you are looking after your Mummy (mommy?) and she knows that we are all sending her our best. Take care and make sure you are just eating food off of each others faces, not each others faces. Because that would be weird. And kind of gross.

  49. Anne C says:


    (^_^) (^_^) (^_^) (^_^) (^_^) (^_^) (^_^) (^_^) (^_^) (^_^) (^_^) (^_^) (^_^) (^_^)…

    (^_^) !!! (^_^).


  50. Cathy says:

    My friend and art teacher just moved to a country house with a pond, 2hole outhouse, outbuilding for classes and a great chicken coop. I am turning her on to yours.
    Only some of us are bugging you. The rest are stalkers.

    • Kat says:

      Cathy my gram had a 2 hole out house and one of the seats was covered with this scratchy fur but boy oh boy on those winter visits to Huntsville Ontario you appreciated the scratchy fur covered one in the middle of the night and mornings! Thanks for the comment that reminded me of those days!

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