Monday, January 25, 2010

Sump Pumps and Confidence!

Time intensive activities seem to appeal to me. I've just finished a family history project that I started back in 2002, when I first handed out questionaires to all my living relatives. Now, it is just about time to take my 168 pages of photos and bios to the printer! This has been extremely intensive and fascinating experience,  I thoroughly enjoy throwing myself into a big project .

Yesterday, I declared myself finished! Then when the mail arrived, I got one last envelope of pictures that I had requested months ago!  AARGH. Today I inserted them into my manuscript and again declared myself done.

The weather in WI was going to be warmer, so I selected a beautiful new pair of striped wool socks to wear today. They felt so good to put on. The colors are bright and cheery which I needed because it was rainy with fog. I spent all day rechecking my manuscript. The last step has scared me the most. I had to find a way to convert my manuscript to a .pdf file. I've been asking everyone I know about pdf's. My 2 grown sons are my computer experts, but I hate to bother them all the time. Finally I downloaded an Open Office program, and then opened a test file to convert. It didn''t work. When I tried to open the new document, I just got funny symbols, no family history. Rats! I guess the new striped socks aren't helping me today.

OK. Today I started out energized because of my project completion. I've had partial success with the pdf thing.  I hate it when tech issues get challenging. Then a light bulb goes on, and I realize I need to open the new file using Adobe Reader!  Bingo, my family history opens in front of me. This is a huge success. I now know how to do this new thing.

Because my husband is out of town, I was going to treat myself to dinner at Chipotle's. As I'm getting ready to leave, I realize that the sump pump isn't turning off, and it sounds funny.

It's raining out, the well around the pump is filling up and it is 6:30 in the evening, what should I do?  I fiddled with the pump and pipe, and realized that it was no longer fixed solid in it's housing. Oh rats! I'm hungry, and want to go to dinner, but don't want to risk a flood in my basement and studio.

I called my handy carpenter, he asked me a lot of questions, and he decided he should come over and take a look. He arrives in about 20 minutes. My pump was 17 years old, It had fallen apart in the water so he installed a new one. We're good for at least another 10 years. Celebrate! And now I can go to dinner.

When things are going well, life is easy and stressless. When problems arise we HAVE TO PROBLEM  SOLVE. During these periods I get anxious and stew about the troubles at hand. If I can solve the issues in some way, I gain new confidence in myself. Struggling through computer issues is extremely uncomfortable foreign territory to me. But I worked it out! Wow this is big for me. And......I have a shiney new sump pump in my basement.

I have spent little time at my sewing machine this past month or two. When my family history book goes to the printer this week; I'll be ready to dive into a new project. I'm ready for a different challenge now. One that involves quilting.


Saturday, January 16, 2010

Invitation to a Quilt Exhibit

Hello everyone,

Yesterday I was interviewed by a reporter from The Kenosha News about a soon to open exhibit of quilts called Fiberistic Journeys. The show will open on Jan 24 and continue until March 21, 2010. I can guarantee you that it will be worth your time for it includes the work of: Robbi Joy Eklow, Rachel Wetzler, Denise Havlan, Beth P. Gilbert, Annette M. Hendricks and myself.

The reporter and I walked through most of the exhibit and he was impressed. He kept saying "Wow!" For me it is more than that, it is visually quite exciting. It was a very gray day, and looking at all the work lifted my spirits. The quilts for the most part are large, very colorful, many have won prizes or found in books, and can just blow you away! Candace Hoffman, Anderson curator, says "This is an exhibit not to be missed."

The exhibit can be found at the Anderson Art Center, 121 Sixty-Sixth Street, Kenosha, WI 53143, 262-653-0481. Open 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm Tuesday to Sunday. The opening reception is open to the public on Jan 24 from 1:30-4:00. Please join us. Over the years this art center has been very supportive of quilting arts, so we need to support them too. It formerly was the Anderson Mansion that is located on the shore of Lake Michigan, a beautiful location, even in the winter months. You can see the photo of the exterior of the outside of the former home.

Many of you are familiar with Robbi Joy Eklow's quilts and postings on the internet. Her second book was published in 2009.

Rachel Wetzler is a prize winning quilter extroidinaire! Her pictorial quilts are a treat for your senses.

Denise Havlan was a painter before becoming a quilter. The surface of her work is fused, appliqued, painted and embroidered. Her work is either figurative or embroidered landscapes.

Beth P. Gilbert is a retired nurse turned quilt artist. She and her husband usually take one or two international trips each year. Either her travels or her garden inspire her fused and appliqued quilts.

Annette M. Hendricks is also a painter turned quilt artist. She appears in many of her quilts. Her faces are painted, the subjects are fused, appli-pieced and beautifully quilted.

And of course there are my quilts as well. you can see all of them on my website.

Read what the Racine Journal Times said about the exhibit at
Read Scene and Heard article on quilts. Please help us spread the word about this exhibit. See you there.

Ann Fahl