Seams and dreamsLaugh if you like, I can handle it, it's a long season!
Would you take free business lessons? I do!Seriously, I'm enrolled in a school that I call life. I'm busy, just like you. But I take those minutes in between and put them to work for me. It's not as easy as it looks. Those who have attended my classes--like Face Your Fears, Superhero Strategies for Unleashing Your Inner Awesome or even Recipes for Teaching a Great Class would tell you, it's not as hard as you fear and sometimes it's getting past that fear and embracing our humanity that is the biggest hurdle we face. Yes, I did go to school. I finished high school, college and even took a graduate level class in metrics just for fun. Laugh if you like, metrics are fun, and we can prove it. If you have no metrics, you can't prove that they aren't fun! Oh, my the PUNs must stop. Before I headed off to teach at two big sewing/quilting venues in 2016, I stopped by my favorite car shop, Rising Sun Motors. Why, cause when I am making choices, I like referrals, that's part of why I want a verified blue checkmark to have that extra oomph that I am me. So I thought, and yes, again, I invite you to laugh if you like... But I really thought that asking for referrals was a good idea. I was WRONG!!! seriously, I did not study business and only took 3 psychology classes, but I did take an awesome amount of engineering, science, math and philosophy/theology/ethics. So what does all that mean.
Catch free range referralsReferrals that naturally occur in nature are far better that any you can grow in captivity. This is a whole books worth of stories, but for tonight--let's focus on the people. No matter what you do, it's a people business.
Thanks to Mike Warshauer of Rising Sun Motors for the title of this post-it's about the people.Listen with your own ears (sorry the audio is not yet transcribed)
Make it Work
Make Your Mark
Make It FUN
Make It Your Own!
FiguresI see numbers first, then realize the word also means beings, persons; after a while I think, oh yeah, sometimes women are dehumanized just into shape--so figure could also be that. I do love that it took me a while to think of that one. It might be like fighting windmills, but I see great power that stems from innocence and hope. See what I did, I said STEM.
Science Technology Engineering MathLove that it's a verb and a noun. Stem, branch--growth, living plants... Today, as I sit watching the my morning show, the light of the day illuminating behind the trees and my neighbors house; I sip my cup of coffee and plan my day. Thinking of the math classes I've taken in my life. I can't say I loved all my classes, one math class short of a math minor, but oh how I love numbers! Seriously, part of my baseball fascination is twisted in the numbers, math and metrics. Tonight, along with others working in my field, I'm attending an early screening of Hidden Figures. Why? Because the opportunity presented itself and I want to stand and be counted with those who honor these Hidden Figures in history. STEM not STEAM Yes, I left Art out on purpose. Engineering and Math are so connected to Art, that ART is hidden inside. Are you saying, it's not fair? That is true, it's not fair. Life is not fair. Life is life. I think that we should work to make life good and more equitable, because
With great privilege comes great responsibility.I won't ask Spiderman to forgive me for replacing Power with Privilege, because in asking for that forgiveness, I'm saying I don't have Permission to create this saying. Permission is a funny topic, be polite, stay in line, keep your voice down--these all have a place, I don't advocate anarchy or chaos. I do advocate learning, growing, going beyond. Yes, and now I've gone beyond my morning time to write, sew or otherwise create. Be You and Be Awesome--and look for the awesome in the everyday, right under your nose.
Hey Viv, I think I'm going to call you Vee-Eye-Vee as your superhero name, it kinda goes well with AtoZ and V-I-V, yeah, you know me!ok, that nickname was short lived, unless I spell it out VeeEyeVee, which defeats the purpose of nickname-ology. This is the last hurrah, next few days will be busy! Can we do a virtual meeting here on the Blog? I popped in a different font for you. Feel free to not answer questions you don't want to, or answer in your own way. I gotta run now!
Vivien- Here we go!I had a great coffee in TimesSquare, barista recipe by Ammy at St.Arbucks You don't drink coffee, or do you?
Vivien-no coffee for me!Just got back late last night from Lion King on Broadway, what a great adventure, such great choreography,costuming, music. When did you start contra dancing? what was the story? Where you just a young lioness at the time?
Vivien-My parents are professional dancers and got into contra dancing through that route. When my sister and I were very young, they would bring us to the dances. When I was in high school in Chicago, I started going with my mom and fell in love with it. Now I'm on the board of the Baltimore dance and I dance at least once, if not multiple times a weekCan't wait for you to meet MsV! Please link to MsV page and tell me something interesting you learned about Valarie Poitier from less than 15 minutes research.
Ms. V is a fiber artist living in Massachusetts. She teaches art quilt workshops and quilt business workshops, namely "Promote Your Work without Apologizing" which teaches people how to speak about their work and present themselves successfully.[AtoZ6pm, yes that is true--but she is more--listen to me reciting her words https://anchor.fm/w/A42149] I'm a pretty positive person who protects my soul from negative thoughts and energy. Yesterday, I said to MsV as I started to say something negative and prefaced it with "well, I shouldn't say this..." OMG, I love her, she stopped me with a sweet joyful voice and said "then don't say it!" I love that I am surrounded by such positive and powerful women like MsV and that I can take that suggestion, that lesson and make it into a touchstone, a reminder to stay on my positive joyful path. I'm passing along lessons, but wow, I don't have all the answers, but I know that the right answers will be available to me if I am listening! [AtoZ 6pm--Oh and most of all, passing along lessons is like the circle of life. It's not that I have the answers and am passing them, it's that we as humans can be part of the circle of life. The things we do, how we interact, those are the really big deal things. ] Okay, here is my question. What do you think of that story and the last few months of working together?
Vivien-I think there's something to be said for actively listening and also reflecting -- that some things might not have the most obvious meaning to them but still impact your life. I think the we are both learning from each other and we should keep listening.[AtoZ 6pm--active listening is good, as is reflecting, I was getting ready to let negative thoughts and words flow from my mouth, which is ironic because you can't fight negative with negative--I an humbled that I was reminded of that, and that we help each other out--we humans. I think that working together is like dancing--but these are enough deep thoughts for one post!] I leave for International Quilt Market and Festival in Houston this week. What are your thoughts and questions about traveling to Houston? It's going to be warm. It's going to be exciting. We should have morning tags ups this week.
Vivien-what are morning tags?[AtoZ6pm--morning tag ups--the 5minute planning session--we can do it virtually too using our action item tracking software--today it was nice to use this post as fun way to let others see behind the curtain.] I think you have a copy of my RollerCoasters and QuiltShows article from International Quilt Scene 2015. Give it a re-read before you pack for good tips tucked into my humor--see Laugh and Learn is definitely my style. I gave you edit write to my FB page, would you check that it works?
Vivien-it does!Would you create individual Facebook Events on my FFATOZ FB page for my 7 classes/lecture that require signing up for at Houston?
10/31 Can You Cacti?
11/1 Superhero Strategies
11/2 Face Your Fears
11/3 Playing with Plarn
11/5 Words Are Not EnoughAlso would you make a single page list by date of where you and I are going to be in Houston?
Vivien-running out of time today but will do tomorrow!(don't share that publicly but since I'm making my interaction with you public, I figured I'd make the request here)
Vivien-If I drop of a bag of extra swag to bring to Quilt Festival with you on Wednesday or Thursday morning, can you bring it?
Vivien- Sure!Don't worry, I know you like cold weather, I'm working on booking us some teaching gigs in New England! Viv, Please feel free to add some links, words, photos to this post and make it live today--I know I will show my name, but I'm outta here--it's 9:30am, and I'm getting in late to work and will check back late tonight! I'll check my messages at lunch incase you have questions! Viv, you rock! -AtoZ
The Life of a Studio Assistant - What It's Like to Be the Studio Assistant at Fun from A to Z
[Viv, leave the text this way, I added in with square brackets and deleted with strikethroughs-why not be transparent, or at least translucent in how I work? Thanks for being you and for being awesome-AtoZ]Amalia
FYI, I will be giving away free info and knowledge at Open Studios and Meet the Teachers. I love to share. If your budget allows, AND you get in before the class sells out, I invite you to join in the fun and answer the question.
Can you cacti?
Yes you can!
Ah! Live your brightest life.Right now my piece Y Knot is in the wash—I like to wash my quilts before binding them so that I get the nice puffy bloom of the wash. PS—I also used two layers of wool batting so I'm confident that something good is happening. So while that's doing it's thing, I have a few minutes to write you a little story. Maybe I will tell my story as a conversation with a saint, an everyday hero, and a kind, kind person who I hope is smiling from heaven and aware of the power of the needle to mend and be a positive force in the world.
Dear YtoA,Yvonne Porcella—dear sweet artist, woman, mother, nurse, finisher of projects. A few weeks ago I met a second person who finished all her projects. I had to give her a prize and someday will write that story. I have so many stories. I know I won't be able to complete them all. But I smile at the thought of your yellow shoes, and the story you told me. I'm most inspired by your humanity, your reality, your spirit that connected fiber, art, and people. Maybe I have it written somewhere, maybe I even have a voice recording somewhere, but for now I have a few minutes and my computer. In 2014, at the SAQA conference, you had no reason to talk to me. I was just an associate that you had never met. Although I sewed my entire life I wasn't really in the quilt world at large. I was in a local guild, and I was a local rep for my SAQA region. Maybe I'm glad that my busy life didn't allow me time to be aware of who everyone was and the influence they had made in the quilting/sewing world. YP? Why Not? That was your line from your lecture at Quilt Festival in Houston in 2014. You wore pants with question marks painted all over them. You were you and you were awesome. I hope that being genuine, kind and real takes off like wild fire, like a spark of love, burning hearts, sacred and true. You rocked the quilt world. I liked you because you were real. You kindly accepted my geeky acronyms and how I had fun with numbers. First time I saw you, I commented on your shoes that were audacious, practical, and fun. Soon you were sharing your story of how wearing unique shoes made for great conversations that occurred in places that you might see someones shoes to your right or left, as you were... well, let's say you were "resting" or "un-hydrating" to quote Leroy Jethro Gibbs from NCIS. YP? Why NOT? we all do. Those where your words, and they make me smile. As a nurse, you understood the importance of a functioning body. As an everyday hero you connected with people in such a real manner when you joked about pee. Your photos in the hospital while you were getting your "reds" were always a treat for me. Seeing the world through your eyes and seeing how even in a hospital you were creating art. The photos you took were most certainly art. I loved seeing the photo of you and your son. He and I have Facebook chatted and someday will meet in real life. I tip my hat and kick up my shoes in your honor. And when I saw that a friend was making a "shoe" quilt for your show, I thought, Why Not! I'd love to machine quilt it. Collaborating with other artists is part of living my brightest life. Last year, I felt a need—the desire—to have a community; and with the digital world, we are not limited, so I started sewFUNfriends. It's a Facebook group—open and inclusive, free and friendly. I was honored to invite people who I was already friends with on Facebook. So of course, I sent an invite to you as well. I was stepping out of my comfort zone. I didn't know that as an admin inviting someone to a Facebook group was basically adding them. In our world, we are so connected, but we are also alone. I think when invited to something, we are on alert and wondering what people are trying to get from us—our money, our time, our influence, our endorsement, our spirit? In fact I'm going to post the conversation we had on Facebook. I didn't want to post this before, because I thought some people might view it as my using your influence, I don't know why I didn't trust my gut more and be myself without worrying how it would be viewed. I hope to honor you and those who have come before me in this simple yet audacious task of sewing and being human. I even think that mending and sewing has a power to connect the world in a way that is needed. Oh I know, I'm one of the big dreamers. At the SAQA conference this year, I even asked the student panel a question. What can we as Studio Art Quilt Associates do to help you as emerging artists? Well, I have my dreams, and I'm making my seams—putting together something that although simple, might be a good first step that I am taking as myself and that maybe other Associates will take as well. Thanks for listening! Your friend, AtoZ
Hello friend (since we are Facebook friends), My intent is to add joy, to treat all people with respect, and to be a positive force in the quilting / sewing world. I’ve been blabbing (I mean blogging) since 2011, sewing since childhood, designing patterns since 2009. I work full-time in engineering. I just got a second dog three weeks ago. Life is great but busy. In order to let you see what this group is, you should have access to view all that has been posted. Sometimes it helps to see what something is before deciding if you like it. The group is a closed group, so the posts are only seen by members.
Where did this come from? Well my Mission Permission Slip social experiment and associated stories around it led to this new Facebook group that is about sewing, light and fun, and we are friends (or at least friendly). My intent is to have a group that is not limited only to quilting because there is so much relevance with other types of sewing. I’ve also experienced firsthand the positive influence a community of stitcher / quilters can have. I invited you to sewFUNfriends. As a moderator, my “invites” show up as “adds”. Please feel welcome to join, unfollow (you won’t see posts), or leave. If you choose to go now, you are welcome to come back later. Life is very busy, so we can’t be in every group, but do check us out and see if this might be fun for you.
Thanks let me think about it. It is a very busy time of the year for me. Getting ready for a museum exhibit in January.
Thanks for your gracious response. Quilts in museums is fantastic news. Much to give thanks for in our joyful/sewful lives.
Yvonne, you were the only one who responded with a request to think about it, my plan is to remove persons if they don't want to join within a couple weeks—this is the message I'm putting out there. Please do what works for you. I want members to be there by choice, so members who have not joined sewFUNfriends group after two weeks, will be respectfully removing. If you decide to join later, just go to the group and request to be included. Thanks! AtoZ http://funfromatoz.com/2015/12/02/something-new-something-fun-sewfunfriends/
Chat Conversation End
Seen Dec 3