Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Work Is Never Done

We hosted the Donor Sneak Peek event at the Museum on Friday night. I think it was a great success...we had over 80 people in attendance, which is a lot for our limited space. On Saturday, we had the special presentation (two speakers) at the courthouse in the District Courtroom. That event was also a great success, with over 180 people attending. Big thanks to IKEA, who donated all the food and refreshments for both special events. Also, thanks to DiVine Wine who donated wine for the Friday night event.

For our part, there's still much to be done. We're registering for the upcoming TAM conference in Galveston (one of my favorite places). Finishing some last minute additions to the exhibit. Installing the new flat screen TV. And, of course, starting to plan for the next exhibit, which opens in March (quilts from our collection). We also are starting volunteer training tomorrow afternoon. And as I write this, Mickie is out giving her first presentation using the new Swedish Immigration Trunk, developed in conjunction with the exhibit. Yea!

Thursday, January 24, 2008

What a difference a day makes...

Or, more accurately, what a difference a few days make. It's wonderful how far we've come with the exhibit. I know, I know...we don't have any photographs or labels up yet, but we've got them printed and mounted. (Thanks to Celina's fine, fine work.) So, really, it's just a matter of time. We're staying late tonight to try to mount the rest of the artifacts. Mickie or Chris will pick up the photos and vinyl lettering from the printers' later today, and we'll get that all up tonight. Which is probably for the best since the sneak peek is tomorrow night. We're closing the museum all afternoon tomorrow to ensure that we've got everything in place before the big unveiling.

We hosted our volunteer appreciation breakfast on Tuesday morning. It was nice to see everyone in a relaxed atmosphere instead of zooming past them on the way to my office or to the printer. We had pastries, fruit, juice, and coffee. Mickie handed out goodie bags and presented each of the volunteers with certificates of appreciation.

So, all that's left this week is the exhibit, finishing the hands-on area and the traveling trunk, preparing for the sneak peek and the exhibit opening (and lecture at the courthouse), and the live remote from the exhibit on Sunday morning. Luckily for me, Mickie and Chris will be here on Sunday morning to do that-- at 6:30 am.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Quiet Sunday

Yep, I'm here on a Sunday. I'm hoping that in the next few quiet hours I'll be able to finish up most of the exhibit labels. We're moving right along...getting artifacts, enlarging/printing photographs, and finishing up the painting.

Tomorrow I'm picking up the reproduction clothing from the donor. I had an appointment to do that on Friday afternoon, but with Austin traffic and the rain, I would have been about an hour late for the meeting even though I left the Museum an hour and 15 minutes before our scheduled meeting time. I should know better than to ever plan something on a Friday night in Austin! Lesson learned...we're meeting tomorrow morning.

Tuesday morning is the volunteer breakfast. Mickie has ordered some food, and she's also planned fun "entertainment." I think most of the volunteers will be able to attend, which is great. We're all looking forward to the breakfast and visiting with everyone.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Focus, focus, focus

Right now, most of our attention is focused on the exhibit, which opens on January 25 with a donor sneak peek event. The official opening is on January 26 with an opening and special presentations at the courthouse. Construction and painting of the exhibit area is all but finished. Mickie and I went shopping for some more supplies and artifacts yesterday. Today, I'll probably buy a tool chest and wooden bench I spotted yesterday at an antique store. So, now I just have to finish writing labels (and print and mount them), choose the photographs to get enlarged, and order vinyl lettering. Most everything else, I can print in-house.

But, the Swedish Texans aren't really all that we've been focusing on...Celina (the super intern/volunteer!) is coming in today to install the small exhibits at the courthouse, and Mickie's got Hands-On History. The presenter (Jan F.) and volunteers (Hopewell Jr. Historians) will be here to help. Tuesday morning we're hosting our first Volunteer Appreciation Breakfast of the year. AND, on Wednesday, our new administrative assistant (Candace) starts.

It's going to be a next seven days!

Saturday, January 12, 2008


Construction on the Swedish-Texans exhibit area is in full swing. They gang came by on Thursday and Friday. They'll be back for an all-day run on Tuesday to finish up--and paint. On Tuesday, we're also flipping the Admin/Volunteer office and the Gift Shop. It's important to get all these changes done now, so we're settled in before the big exhibit opening (January 25 is the donor sneak peek). On Wednesday, we're interviewing two people for the Admin position. Hopefully, we won't be without that crucial position too long. It's such an important job!

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

I Love Books

In my typical how-hard-can-it-be fashion, I decided that we (the Museum) should start a book club. It began with something very simple. One morning on the way to give walking tours of the downtown square to second graders, I passed a board member (Cheryl) on the sidewalk. She said, "The Museum should start a book club." My thinking was this 1) it's not in our budget, so there's no funds, and 2) that's just one more thing to add on to my ever-growing list of things to do. So, for a few months, that was it. Then, I got an email from the adult services librarian (Richard) at the Georgetown Public Library saying something like, "Hey, we should try to do some joint programming."

Ah-ha! Museum + Library= Book Club. I've never been to a book club, much less ever started one. So, we got our little planning group together (Linda, Cheryl, Mickie, Richard, and I). Last night was our very first meeting. We'd had good publicity in the local paper, and we'd put the event on our website. I was thinking that Mickie's goal of 40 to 50 people would turn out to be more like 10-15. Boy, I was surprised! We had a total of 39 people, with more interested who couldn't make the first meeting. The group is so big that we can't meet at the Museum; we'll have to meet at the Library from here on out. Woo-hoo! (For those interested, our first selection is Goodbye to a River by John Graves.)

On a more sad note, Jeanne has put in her resignation and her last day at the Museum is Thursday. We'll certainly miss her, and I know the volunteers will be very sad to see her leave.

Construction SHOULD start on the exhibit area was supposed to start last week...then today. Crazy weather has been holding us up. So, in preparation I've asked Celina to come back and help with exhibit planning and work. We've got to set up an exhibit at the courthouse, too. I think everyone's very, very excited about the upcoming Swedish Texans exhibit...I know that I've got a lot of work left to do before it all comes together!