My Backyard in Style at Home.
I can show it to you now.

Yesterday was a very sad day indeed. While I was checking out at the grocery store I noticed that the new issue of Style at Home was out. Which meant the old issue of Style at Home was off the shelves.

The old issue you see featured my backyard in it. With the magazine off the shelves it was going to make grabbing it and thrusting it into strangers faces screaming THAT’S MY BACKYARD IN THERE!!! THAT’S MY BACKYARD IN THERE!! way more difficult. Unless I carry a spare around in my purse I guess.

The good news is, since the magazine is off the shelves, it is now online! So I can now direct you to the Style at Home website where you can see all of the pictures and read the entire article.

I shall tease you with a couple of the shots they featured.



To see all of the pictures and read the story I wrote to go along with it, click on the Style at Home website.

You will not see my chicken coop in the pictures because Style at Home actually took the pictures for this article 3 years ago! Well before the chicks were even the sweat on a Rooster’s nose. But if you’re wondering where the coop is, in relation to the article, it’s located where I am standing in the very last picture.

Enjoy. I’m also happy to tell you, I have a few more articles written and lined up for both Canadian and American magazines. I will let you know when they’re on shelves. You know. So you can thrust them in stranger’s faces.


  1. Hope says:

    My husband ordered Style at Home for me as a surprise….I bring copies home from the library to inspire us in our renovations of our old house. The FIRST issue I got was the one with your garden in it! We were BOTH thrilled since I read your blog out loud to him occasionally for his edification and enlightenment. Yay for you! And for writing the piece too for the $$$ reward too!

  2. Marti says:

    So I clicked. And the first thing I got… was a pop-up ad, blocking your entire article. Do these people not get the importance of the article about YOUR backyard? Including YOU and all your hard work?

    I nearly choked on my over-salted fire broth. (Which I did end up tossing out. So thanks for making me do it, btw. It’ll take days before I sweat off the cup I forced down before you got to me.)

    Congrats on the article. Looking forward to more.

    • Marti says:

      Btw, what do you do with the fish in the winter? Do they “hunker down”? Or do you panfry and start over every spring?

    • Toronto Boy says:

      You need to turn your pop up blocker on. To do this in Internet Explorer, click on “tools” at the top of your browser. It will then present you with a sublist: click on “Internet Options”. A pop up window will appear with a series of tabs. Click on the “privacy” tab. There will a section titled “turn on pop-up blocker”. Click the square box beside it to turn it on. Next, at the bottom of the pop up window, click “Apply” for the change to take effect. Finally, click “okay” to close the pop up window. Recently there have been several security issues. I’ve noticed that a number of blogs which use the “pop up ads” are actually tansmitting malware viruses. Turning on the pop up window will help not only to allivate the issue of pop up ads but the transmission of viruses on your computer. Cheers!

      • cheryl seals says:

        HEY TORONTO BOY, THKS for telling us less commputer sauvey peeps how to turn off the pop up blocker we are forever in your debt.! Karen the backyard looks awesome girl way to go !! cheryl

  3. Raymonde says:

    I’m in love with the pond and waterfall!!!!!! Does your cat try to catch the fish?

  4. Kat says:

    I will have you know that I read your article while it was still on the shelves. No I didn’t stand in some store reading it and put the magazine back on the shelf when I was done. But close though, I work in a convenient store and I sat down to read it after the boss left. I spotted it right away and couldn’t wait till the boss left to read it. Great job Karen!

  5. Kim says:

    You have MORE articles lined up?!!! OMG, you’re a bona fide WRITER!!! ๐Ÿ™‚ Congrats!!! (Shove that in your mama’s face. Very politely, nicely and lovingly of course! She’s your mama!)

  6. cred says:

    loved it! The photos are beautiful.

    Have you ever mentioned where you got the loungers on your patio? I love their contemporary style.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Cred – Thx! I actually got the lounge chairs at Canadian Tire! I’m not sure if they carry them anymore. ` karen!

  7. Candice says:

    I would never get anything accomplished if my yard looked like that…I would just loll away the day in one of those lounge chairs. Gorgeous!

  8. marilyn says:

    great job karen!

  9. Maureen Locke says:

    You are such a gal of many talents. I am so jealous. I’m the handyperson in our household but no way would I ever tackle something as major as the jobs you tackle. I’m in awe.
    So, I’m confused of the layout of this lovely oasis. If the chicken coop is about where you’re standing in the pic, do you still have the pond? And that relaxing oasis?? Any chance for some new pics? I’m just being nosey is all. ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. RosieW says:

    Karen, this is one of the very best ever DIY renovations I’ve ever seen. It brought to mind a poem I barely recalled, but found by Googling “they said it couldn’t be done” and found this:

    It so personifies what you do!

    Rosie, in Sugar Hill, GA

    • Karen says:

      Thanks RosieW – Yes, “I did it”. But I’m pretty sure I’d never “did it” again. ๐Ÿ™‚ ~ karen

      • RosieW says:

        I’ve said for years and years that I’m blessed with being such an optimist and admit freely that the massive projects I’ve done were harder than I thought they’d be, but who cares…….cuz I DID IT.

        My onceuponahusband would say “You can’t do that!” Those words spurred me onto bigger and better things.


  11. Laura Bee says:

    It looks so nice. Low maintenance too. I think I need to rip out the deck & lay some stone down. That would be easier than staining it again, right?
    I love the round chair in black – did you paint it?

  12. Kim says:

    OMG how I COVET your neat little parcel of organized beauty.

    Yes. A goat would be lovely in there.

  13. Maryanne says:

    What a BEAUTIFUL, peaceful looking place to escape from the busy, crazy world!

  14. Kinda been in awe of you for a long time! It was funny when I picked up my very own copy of the magazine and was thrusting it in my Hubby’s face showing him the article… he kinda didn’t care… I know right? He cared once I explained, she’s a blogger, I follow her. I’m a brand new blogger (I guess) and you have given me a tool to show Hubs when he thinks the projects are cray… ๐Ÿ˜‰ Hun, maybe this one will be in a magazine!

    Thanks for that!

    PS: congrats, you are awesome and should have your own magazine!!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks for thrusting Laurie! And good luck with your blog. They’re a lot of work, but ridiculously fun as well. ~ karen!

  15. CP says:

    So beautiful and inspiring. Love the lounge chairs – been searching for. ev. er. to find something just like that… clean straight lines. They are perfection. Please tell us where you found them. I nearly broke down and settled on the Ikea version this weekend. Save me from myself…

    • Karen says:

      Hi CP – The chairs were $99 each from But I don’t think they carry them anymore. ๐Ÿ™ ~ karen

  16. Alex says:

    I love that fence. Well I mean I love the entire yard but the fence and how it compliments the space and especially the privacy it gives. We live in the ‘burbs and every day we wake up and go is it time to get a new fence yet so we don’t have to look through to our neighbours yard. Rather them looking into ours.

  17. Terry says:


    Would you do an article on building the pond. I would love to hear about that. I am sure there are others who would like that as well. Beautiful job on the yard.

  18. ruth says:

    I get Style at Home on my tablet so I get to look at the article whenever I feel like it! I work at a garden centre so I can also call it up as an example of a great small space with lots of plants in it!

  19. Theresa says:

    OMG, your backyard is amazing! I would love to have a backyard like that. The contrast of the beautiful greenery with the black modern furniture is stunning. You rock, Karen!

  20. Natalie says:

    Beautiful photos! Congratulations! ๐Ÿ™‚

  21. Sandy says:

    So beautiful and peaceful!! Love the fish pond.

  22. Jeannie B says:

    Your little oasis is beautiful Karen. Has anyone ever fallen into the pond? And have the neighbourhood raccoons been attracted to it? They love to fish in ponds at night. I always wanted a pond. Bought the pump and the tubing but that’s a far as it went.

  23. Barbie says:

    Very impressive! Although I have watched the progress as you blogged about your backyard renovation I am very happy to see that this made “Style at Home”!! Congratulations! Everything looks so inviting and relaxing! I would thrust it in strangers faces too ….in fact HAVE…when my wreaths were in certain catalogs….something really rewarding about seeing your work recognized! VERY happy for you!

  24. gloria says:

    I completely understand the “thrusting in strangers’ faces” thing. I too, suffered from this psychotic behavior when I was lucky enough to have an article published in a magazine. I used to casually stand in a check-out line or in the media section of my local library (all the better, because I might see someone I knew) and thumb through the issue with my story. And just as casually, I might put it back on the shelf, open to the appropriate page. I’d like to think most writers are just as shameless. Congrats on a great article.

  25. Ritz says:

    It looks like a green paradise!

  26. Karen, I’d seen this on your blog, but CONGRATS on the article.
    Love your hair in the first photo! Glam digger!
    It looks like so much work, which I know it was, but what a wonderful oasis now. I think I’d never come inside if mine looked half as good as this! I’m looking to get raised beds to save me bending to weed, would you recommend that pressure treated wood? I love wood, but afraid it will rot…

    • Karen says:

      Hi mimi – Pressure treated is great, but a lot of people wouldn’t want to use it around vegetable beds because of the toxins from the treatment leaching into the soil. Not sure how much proof/evidence there is of this but I know the chemicals to treat it aren’t so very great. ~ karen!

  27. Nancy Blue Moon says:

    It amazes me that the projects that you do and have never done before..They always end up looking like professionals did it..I remember that I first saw your yard when I found your blog..when you showed everyone your big glowing orbs..the glass ones that

  28. Maria says:

    You know the picture of you that says Ask Karen and people keep asking how you get those abs? NOW I know how you got those abs. One shovel of dirt at a time. Great job on the yard.

  29. maude says:

    You’ve done a great job with your backyard and congrats to you for getting into a magazine; thats very cool:)

  30. Lori says:

    Awesome job, Karen!!!!!! Love your back yard! So peaceful looking. maybe some day when I have a back yard, that I can do with as I please , I’ll have a yard like yours!

  31. lemur_lass says:

    I second the tutorial on the pond construction. How do you winter-fy it?

    I love your backyard so much, especially with mixing the contemporary style with the older style home, which is what I am trying to do.

    Out of curiosity, what are your free standing planters constructed from? Where did you find them?

    Inquiring minds want to know!!!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Lemur_lass – All of my planters are metal. I can’t really remember where I found all of them but the really large ones were from a discount store and the random smaller square ones were probably from a garden centre. ~ karen!

  32. Leslie says:

    So beautiful! And inspiring.

  33. Cindy says:

    The planters look amazing! How did you do it? What materials and steps did you take to make it? I’m trying to redo my backyard and do the same style planters as yours!

  34. Steven says:

    …thrust them in strangerโ€™s faces… Will do! ๐Ÿ™‚ Amazing pictures and an amazing garden, wow! I just might be a bit jealous now. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  35. Holly says:

    Your blog inspires me. I look forward to it everyday.

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Holly! :)Trust me, I appreciate each and every reader. Especially the ones who read every single day! ~ karen

  36. Lori says:

    I saw this and the next day I found 2 globes at a sale for .50 ea. thanks for the idea!

  37. julia says:

    I find myself on your page because my backyard looks like crap. Frustrated I am searching around the web for hints and diy ideas. I like how you describe the starting point for you and then that wonderful relaxing finished backyard. That is the part I am looking to be at. Thanks for the postings.

  38. Looking forward to seeing how you do all this. I’ll be hanging on your ever nail, so full instructions would be welcome as I’m spatially challenged. This means I can’t imagine what a picture on a wall will look like until it’s up there.

    Just wondering if you’ll be building an inexpensive, easy to erect, sturdy-but-attractive garden trellis to grow squash vines on? Just sayin’

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