3/15/13

How to Drive Yourself Crazy Without Even Trying

Okay, so I know I've been saying I was going to sew for, like, three days now.  But Day Three has come and gone without so much as two stitches of sewing.  I actually did sew one stitch.  I'll get to that in a minute.

First, I want to say that I saw my orthopedist today, who said what I thought he would say:  surgery probably won't help my knee.  However, he did say that weight loss "can't do anything but help."  I thanked him for that vote of confidence.  He gave me a prescription for physical therapy, but I don't know if I will go.  I'm hard pressed to think how that's going to help either.  My knee has a degenerative process going.  My thinking is that I'm going to need to learn to live with it until I can't live with it any more.  By that I mean until I'm ready for a knee replacement...which I am not.  For now, I'll just whine about it from time to time and use it as an excuse not to exercise when I need one.

So that appointment took waaaaaaaaay longer than I thought it would.  I was advised that I needed to check in at 9:45 a.m. for my 10:00 a.m. appointment.  By 11:15 a.m., I was still cooling my jets waiting to see the doctor.  I think he came in around 11:25 a.m.  This annoys me to no end, but I'm sure you ALL have stories about being admonished not to keep the doctor waiting, and then waiting a damned fine piece yourself.

Once I got out of there I went to a quilt shop I've been meaning to visit, but I'll have to tell you about it in a separate post.  It was a good one, so I'm excited to tell you about it.  For now, I have to tell you how I drove myself crazy today--aside from waiting in the doctor's office forEVER.

So here goes:  Last night, this dropped into my email inbox:


Now, I should never be shown things like this because it gets me thinking too much.  I have a Bernina 440QE which I love in every way except one.  The harp space is quite small and it makes free motion quilting anything larger than a lap quilt very difficult...for me, at least.  I know there are those who use their domestic sewing machines to quilt absolutely humongous quilts, but I haven't found the patience to do it on my machine.  

So, once again, this ad drops into my email inbox, and I get to thinking about it.  Then I read the reviews for the Bernina 750QE, which has a full three inches more harp space, and I think, nah!  And then I think, heck yeah!  And then I think, nah, Mike would never go for it.  And then I think lots of things.  And then I dream about it.  And then I decide to approach Mike about it.  And guess what?  No begging!  So, without getting too carried away, I got carried away and bought one this afternoon.


I've spent the whole afternoon getting it set up and sewing exactly one stitch.  Then, it was getting late in the day, and so I decided to wait until tomorrow to spend more time with the instruction book.  And, fortunately, it comes with four classes so I can learn to use it.  The first class is on Sunday morning.  Since I'm making dinner for the kids on Sunday, that pushes my stress level a little higher, but I decided I would rather get through the class sooner than later.  And the 2nd class is meeting Monday evening, so by Monday evening, I should have a much better handle on it.

An advantage/disadvantage of the machine is that the bobbin holds 80% more thread than my current bobbins AND there is a sensor that causes the machine to stop sewing when the bobbin runs out of thread.  I like that feature a LOT.  Here's the disadvantage...I have about twenty of these smaller bobbins that will be of no use to me now.  I'm planning to sell my Bernina 440QE, and so I guess the bobbins will go to whoever buys it.  I have a basic Janome already and I can't afford to have the Bernina 440 just sitting around if I'm going to shell out the bucks for this new machine.  But here are the two bobbins side by side.


That also means I won't be able to use my Bobbin Buddy storage system any more either, but I'm not complaining.  Just observing.


So once I had the machine set up, I sneaked a peek into the instruction book.  This is what I saw first:


Yikes!  And right away, I managed to make this red light come on.  I still don't know what it means, but in practice, it means the machine won't budge.


So I sort of flipped through the instruction book, paying special attention to the trouble-shooting pages, and couldn't figure out what was going on.  So I did what any computer nerd would do (because, let's face it, today's sewing machines are simply computers with needles), and I turned off the machine.  And then it was back to green again.  And then I sewed one stitch.  Wahoo!

And then I decided I'd had enough excitement for one day.  Besides, I was still in love with the new machine.  I knew if I pressed my luck, I would be in tears very soon.

And that's how I drove myself crazy without even trying.  A new sewing machine is a blessing and a curse.  A blessing for obvious reasons.  A curse because now I have to figure out a complicated piece of machinery...one with a computer...and a needle.  What could possibly go wrong?

And if you have any interest at all in my 440QE, it comes with the optional machine embroidery module, the plexiglass extension table, the Bernina stitch regulator, an extra bobbin case, and twenty or so metal bobbins!  I'll be listing it on Craig's List sometime next week, but email me for more info.

30 comments from clever and witty friends:

Cheryl's Teapots2Quilting said...

Now you know why I do most of my sewing with vintage machines. Computers and I just don't get along well. I can handle my pretty low tech Janome 4800QC. I'd be afraid to even plug your machine in. Have fun with it.

WoolenSails said...

Congratulations on the new machine!
I saw where they have larger bobbins now, nice feature for quilting too. Mine stops when it runs to the end so I know I have another few inches I can go before it is completely out, nice feature to have. Mine has lots of sensor lights and it can drive you nuts, especially if it gets lint in the bobbin, stops the machine and won't sew, lol.

Debbie

Norma said...

Congratulations on your new computer, I mean sewing machine. Just remember, if all fails, reboot, reboot, reboot! And then you get the "Danger! Stop Now" message, then the blue screen of death, and the tech says something about motherboards and hard drives, and...well, anyway, congrats on your new computer, I mean sewing machine!

Sherry said...

Ohhh how wonderful, I'm excited for you!

Ray and Jeanne said...

Congrats on that new machine! I got a Bernina 550 last fall. The bells and whistles can drive you nuts at first! What I know about your red light green light is this: when everything is not set to go, the light is red and you can not sew. For example, if you have the stitch regulator ready and the feed dogs are not down, the light is red. Or if you are ready to just sew a straight stitch, the light is not green until the pressure foot is down. Good Luck - the learning curve isn't bad! ~Jeanne

StasaLynn said...

oooooo nice machine! I love my Janome and it is still relatively new - but your Bernina is so nice! You will have lots and lots of fun with it. Cannot wait to see what you make!

Kelly Vetch said...

Enjoyed reading this post! Enjoy the machine once you get to sew with it anyway. Lol

SewBlinkey.blogspot.com said...

I am sure sorry about your knee. Aren't doctors just a pain! Wish we could charge them! But I am so happy for your new machine. I have the 780 and love the larger bobbin. Enjoy your machine.

quiltzyx said...

I hate waiting when the Dr. is late too. Ergh. I was told a zillion years ago that I have condromalacia (sp?) - disintegrating cartilege in my knees. But I have found that PT does help. When I do my knee exercises, I usually have less pain with my knees.

Congrats on your new Bernina!!! What a lovely St. Paddy's day gift!

Sarah said...

Ooh so exciting! Lucky girl. Actually I've been wondering about a new machine. Now that I'm working again I have some money available for such indulgence. Problem is, I don't sew as much if I'm working!

Barbara @ Nähtante Quilts said...

Oh, wonderful, congrats on your new sewing machine! I have a Pfaff Quilter's Expression 4.0, which is as computerized and the Bernina, and it doesn't cause me any trouble.
Would love to try a Bernina...
Have fun! :-)

Lyndsey said...

Oh you are one lucky lady. You'll soon get your head round it and be whizzing along in no time and think of the FMQ you will now be able to manage on larger quilt items.

Kate said...

Congrats on the new machine. There are a lot of pros and cons for the newer machines. The computers are both blessing and curse. There is definitely a learning curve with the new machine.

treadlemusic said...

I know that joints/spines are way better off when the muscles surrounding them are doing the "work" intended for them, rather than relying on the joints w/o support.
Congrats on the new "sewing computer" (Bernina term!?!). It won't be long and it'll be "old hat" to you!! You can do it and love it!!! Great things in your future!!!! Hugs, Doreen

Dana Gaffney said...

Congratulations! I'm not sure if I could wait to use it, but that red light would scare me too. I love the bobbin news, bigger is much better, my "princess" machine stops sewing and screams when the bobbin runs out, but my primary machine just merrily keeps sewing until I notice the thread just following along. Enjoy!

Dirt Road Quilter said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dirt Road Quilter said...

Having to wait for the doctor when I have an appointment never fails, but I know they have things come up so I always take something to read and something to hand stitch.
I had the opportunity to stitch on one of those fancy Berninas the other day and I felt as if I were flying the space shuttle. LOL. If there is a bell or whistle, you can bet I'll make it go off. You're going to have so much fun with it! Don't forget to come up for air!

Snoodles said...

LOL I'm trying to lose weight, right? So I walk/run/do aerobics, etc. Knees hurt. But knees would hurt less if weighed less, so walk, run, etc. Sheesh! What to do! Where is the magic pill to drop twenty pounds so I can exercise without excruciating pain??? :)
Congrats on your awesome machine...if this were videocommenting, you would see I'm green. Heehee!

Diane Wild said...

I'm convinced that the best remedy for medical/stress issues is a new sewing machine. You'll forget about your knee problems in no time. Wow, finally a remedy for bobbin runout. Roger always wondered why a sewing machine couldn't be invented that allowed an entire spool of thread to be inserted in the bobbin case. Looks like Bernina is getting close to a solution. Maybe Mike & Matthew could work on that? Congrats!

Anne said...

I am terribly sorry about your knee problems. My husband suffers from pain and movement difficulties from his bad knee.

Yay for you getting a new machine! I will be watching a Webinar presentation about the newest line of Bernina machines Tuesday morning.

My local dealer sells Bernina, Brother, and baby lock machines. Because this dealer is quite successful, big-name quilters and embroidery experts frequently visit good old Benton, Arkansas to lead hands-on demonstrations and/or seminars. However, these folks represent the Brother/baby lock company, so I'm always sewing on those machines instead of the Berninas. I own a Bernina 630E and a B215, which I won at a quilt show.

I can't wait to read about your experiences with your new machine. I bet you will love it!

Quilting Babcia said...

Wow! Congratulations on your new machine! Hope you're getting lots of sewing time today. That empty bobbin warning feature is a great feature. My Janome warns me by creating a mess of stitches just before the bobbin thread ends - wonder what engineering dropout thought that one up.

Brown Family said...

Congratulations! You will love your new machine. On of the hardest things to get use to is the presser foot! When you step on the foot pedal, the presser foot goes down! It will take time to stop reaching behind the machine to put the foot down or raise it. The machine has a security system that will give you the warnings. For instance, if you put on a straight stitch throat plate and tell the security system, the machine will not let you do any stitches other than straight! You can tell it if you have a double or triple needle in and It will not let you sew with the wrong throat plate of foot!

I could go on for hours! I have the 830 which has two or three more inches in the throat or harp space!

Does the 750 have embroidery? What all did you get with it!

I am so excited for you!

Nan

Rachel said...

WOW! Happy day for you!! Congrats!! I can't wait to hear how it goes!! FYI, on my BabyLock the red light of death means the foot is up...LOL...You shoulda seen me stress over that one! I HATE waiting for a doc. If you aren't going to see me for 45 mins, make my appointment 45 mins later!

Junebug613 said...

Congratulations! How very exciting! I have two very simple machines, with no computery stuff at all, so I'd be studying for months before I could use one of those!

PJ said...

Congrats on your new machine. I hope you will love it more and more as you use it. The 7 Series are a Honey!

Take care of that knee. My DH went to PH for a month and it helped him get rid of the pain. Go do it.

Lynne said...

Oooo, how exciting!

Denise :) said...

Well, hot-dog-diggity!! Look at you, going all upscale on the machine! Congrats -- it looks marvelous! And I can see already (I am scrolling backwards) that your first class went well!!! :)

Teresa in Music City said...

Oh my! Congratulations on your new addition to the family!!! You are going to be running rings around the rest of us with that gorgeous machine making everything so easy & elegant. Well, once you learn how to NOT trigger the red button LOL!!! Whoohoo!!!

Casandra said...

Hello, I'm a new follower and very interested in buying 750 as well. Are you pleased with it so far? I'm not even sure I have room for it. Can't figure out the dimensions of the full machine through info online. If you have a chance, would you mind measuring yours and let me know? Thanks!

Casandra

Nita said...

Just read your post about that pretty new case you bought, and then had to think what kind of machine you bought (because I am pre-shopping for a sewing machine) and now am wondering how the new machine is doing? I am wondering about such a computerized machine. Are you still loving it?