I live in Ottawa, Canada with my children Keagan (15) and Keira (13) and Morkie named Bailey. I am an expert in messy bedroom organization, dispute resolution, and activity juggling.
I love singing in the shower, dancing anywhere, sharing bear hugs with my children, kayaking at sunset, photographing landscapes, wearing sparkly things, driving and talking fast, exploring the world’s mountains and oceans, running half-marathons, playing guitar by the campfire, and enjoying good food, good wine, and good friends…preferably together!
random facts about me


  1. I love the smell of campfires and matches...must have been a pyromaniac in a former life. I also love the smell of newly-cut grass and freshly-baked bread.

  2. I always have a song playing in my head, and know the lyrics and melody to a crazy number of songs. My parents said I memorized and could sing an entire Irish Rovers record (yes, record, I'm old) when I was two. Interestingly, my son also has a tremendous memory for songs and seems to know any tune that comes on the radio. He’s my mini-me.

  3. I was raised in a conservative Catholic home but now consider myself to be a spiritual liberal. Makes for interesting dinner conversation.

  4. I have been married twice. My first husband, Blair, died of cancer when I was 22. My second husband, James, and I parted ways when I was 35. People often look at me funny and ask “How old are you?” when they discover I have been married twice already.

  5. I had an amicable divorce. My ex and I consciously chose to make our transition from one home to two as easy as possible on our kids (then 2 and 4). A decade later, we continue to celebrate holidays and birthdays as a family and work together as a parenting team.

  6. I've enjoyed my time as a single woman! I admit I didn’t at first, but I came to love the many benefits of single life: having the bed to myself, fun outings and spa days with my girlfriends, peaceful cottage vacations alone, buying myself the presents and flowers I want, even taking myself on dates!

  7. My family life is even better than before. My kids listen to and respect me. They help out without being asked. They are polite and thoughtful and kind-hearted. They are happy, independent, and fun-loving. I truly love spending time with them…including road trips and vacations!

  8. Having children makes you understand fear like never before...fear they'll get hurt, fear they'll go missing, fear you'll die before you see them get married, fear you'll make so many mistakes they'll spend years in therapy.

  9. Having children also makes you understand love like never before. I love the way my kids smile, dance, giggle, hug me, blow kisses, say thank you, act silly together, run, and try new things with abandon.

  10. I drove from Sedona to Vegas with a broken wrist! Yes, I broke my wrist go-kart racing (one of many adventures I’ve had as a single woman), right before a planned solo trip to Sedona, Arizona and Las Vegas, Nevada. I did not know how I would manage my bags with one hand on my own, let alone whether the rental company would still let me drive a car with only one hand (my non-dominant one at that). But I chose to trust in the Universe and in my own ability to figure things out. And sure enough, the trip was terrific and kind people offered to help exactly when I needed it!

  11. I have an obsession with Lululemon yoga wear. (I guess that makes me more of a Sporty Spice than a Posh Spice.) I also have an obsession with stationery, white boards, sticky notes, and boxes. (I like to organize things!)

  12. I have lived in New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Quebec, and Ontario. I have visited St. Lucia, Hawaii, Dominican Republic, Mexico, Jamaica, Cuba, Antigua, Grand Cayman, PEI, Alberta, British Columbia, Boston, North Carolina, San Francisco, Las Vegas, and Sedona. My favorite destinations to date are Hawaii, Sedona, and Banff. Places I want to go: Australia, New Zealand, Figi, Costa Rica, Europe, India, Africa.

  13. I am a nature nut. I love camping, hiking, running, biking, swimming...doing anything outside, really. Nature fills me up, relaxes me, makes me feel more like myself, and reminds me of what's important in life.

  14. The only material things I really want are a cottage on a lake and a kayak. I dream of sitting on my deck, overlooking a misty lake at dawn, listening to the loons while writing my latest book. Later in the day, I go kayaking and swimming with my partner and kids.

  15. I'm an artist at heart. I love writing, photography, music, and scrapbooking. I play guitar and piano. As a child, I wanted to be a dancer or a singer, or to author a book.

  16. My son once told me, “Mommy, I don’t just like to help. I need to help.” I can relate. I, too, really need to help people and make a difference in the world. My daughter is a mega-helper too.

  17. My first car was a 1988 5-litre, 8-cylinder Ford Mustang (inherited from Blair). The first time I drove it, I spun off the road and nearly hit a telephone pole. (I was used to driving my Dad’s Toyota Corolla and wasn't expecting the Mustang's tremendous horse power.)

  18. Speaking of horses, I've always loved animals, especially horses. When I was young, I read Black Beauty and the entire Black Stallion series. I dreamed of being an equestrian and asked Mom and Dad every Christmas for a horse.

  19. I'm extremely sensitive to people's emotions and to the energy in a room. I'm also very intuitive and often know that things are going to happen before they do. But thankfully, I don't see dead people (and never want to!).

  20. For some reason, when I go near lightbulbs or electronics, they often short-circuit. I've blown countless street lamps, three computers, my camcorder (twice), my fridge (twice), a bank machine, and my cell phone (more times than I can count).

  21. My parents used to call me "question box" when I was young because I would constantly ask "why" when they said anything. Little wonder I ended up studying journalism and becoming a writer.

  22. I love to read, but prefer non-fiction. I usually have several books and magazines on the go at any one time.

  23. I was neurotic about my studies when I was younger. When it was bedtime, I would hide a flashlight in my bed so I could continue doing homework once the lights were out. I also carried a heavy French-English dictionary back and forth to school every day. I got great grades and scholarships, but paid too great a price in terms of stress and lack of social life. I'm now much more insistent on work-life balance.

  24. In journalism and politics, it's all about who you know. I have a degree in journalism and worked for the federal government, yet I can't remember people's names for the life of me. Or dates. And I suck at geography. Guess that's why I don't work for The Globe & Mail.

  25. I've inherited my mother's pack-rat gene, at least when it comes to food. I don’t like running out of essential ingredients and staple goods, so I always keep extra on hand. If you looked in my basement, you'd think I was preparing for a nuclear war. I have three six-foot-high Ikea shelves filled with grains, rice, pasta, canned goods, juice, and so on. My friends have always said they'd know where to come if there was a natural disaster and they needed food.

fun facts about Karen