About Me

Hi! I am so glad you stopped by for a chat. Grab a cup of coffee or tea while I tell you a bit about myself.

morning coffee1a


I often refer to myself as Tu-Na when commenting on blogs. However, my real name is Karen.

I am a mom to 5 grown children (4 boys and 1 girl) and a grandmother to 4 kiddos (3 boys and 1 girl). I am most often asked about my blog name, Tu-Na, so I wrote my first post titled Tu-Na? to tell the story of how it began.

I live on a hobby farm in North Dakota until the weather turns cold


ND snow 1a

(but before it begins to look like this)


Nd snow 2a

(or this. We’ve seen many winters with lots of snow.)


and then my husband, of 42 years, and I head south to Arizona to soak up the sun rays until the weather turns warmer up north.

AZ 1a

Here is Chihuly’s Scarlet and Yellow Icicle at the 2014 Chihuly in the Garden Exhibit in Phoenix, Arizona. Now that’s my kind of icicle!


Our grandson calls our North Dakota house our “Apple House” and our Arizona House our “Orange House” because of the fruit trees found in our yards.

I learned to sew from my mother and through 4-H and made my first quilt at age 16. Read my second post  My First Quilt, to find  out what happened to it. I continue to sew, quilt, and add fabric to my stash. I’ve taught my daughter to sew and she is now a 4th generation quilter.


I worked on some Quilty Fun! I stumbled upon Lori’s blog, Bee in my Bonnet, two years ago. It was my first exposure to quilting blogs. Thanks Lori!


I was a stay-at-home mom until my youngest started school and then I re-entered the workforce as a parenting instructor and a child development specialist. After earning my Master’s degree in Early Childhood Education at the age of 54 and working a few more years, I decided I only ever really wanted to do the things I love the most so I retired.

baby dolls2a

My baby dolls from work were giving me a “thumbs up” when I retired early. I had a great job working and playing with children ages birth to 3. Now I can work and play with fabric.

This blog documents my journey as I do those things I enjoy: quilt, travel, and eat.

Thanks for stopping by and please come again to check on my quilting, traveling, and eating adventures and misadventures. I appreciate your comments on my posts. I try to respond to each comment either by email or here on the blog.

Contact me at: kthurn@bektel.com



24 thoughts on “About Me

  1. Alice Tauke

    Karen, this is so impressive! You, indeed, have a wonderful talent. I will pass this along to my daughter and friends who are also quilters. I’ll be looking forward to seeing you at your orange house in Arizona.


  2. Sharon

    Thanks for stopping at Old Alley and leaving so many nice comments. I hope you are on schedule and are having a great time. Sharon


    1. LuAnn

      Old Alley is one of my favorite quilt shops, too! Everyone is always helpful and very friendly. Love the bowling alley history of the shop, too.


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  9. Sandra Schwall Caulder

    I just found your site (for the first time). You are doing what I want to do. I retired (Uhmm, my program lost it’s state funding) back in 2008. At the time I was OK with it because I was getting burned out of the “desk job” routine. My son was getting married that summer and I quickly had visions of grand-babies on my mind. I finally got a granddaughter in 2015. She is the light of my life and I watch her 2 days a week for her parents. She calls me Gammie and she calls Grandpa, Poppy. For many years I have wanted to just sit in my craft room and sew. Sew anything….clothes, doll clothes, quilts, toys, purses…you name it, I have a patterns for it. BUT, arthritis made it difficult and I ended up having both my knees replaced. My fingers are stiff most mornings, and one of my hips hurt but I am ready to take the “bull by the horns” and get back to doing what I love. I hope to someday open an Etsy shop and share what I make with others. I will be follow your blog….it is nice to meet you Karen. My name is Sandra.


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