Misadventures in Washing Machines

Okay, so remember the kitchen calamity of a few weeks ago when the washing machine burned up its belt? It was the same day I mopped the floor three times trying to clean up the pickle juice. Yes, that day. And maybe you remember that the Resident Repairman fixed the washing machine in a single afternoon. Yes, it was a good thing too because his cape was dirty and needed a good washing.

Well, even though the washing machine has been working, it never stopped making the terrible whine that started all this. A few nights ago, we washed a load of towels, and then I noticed water on the floor of the laundry room. We looked at one another in dread of what was to come. We just hoped everything would hold together until we leave on our trip...although we have hired a student from one of the local colleges to house sit for us while we're gone. (I made a mental note to make a listing of the local laundromats.)

So, anyway, the Resident Repairman was between repair jobs. (Repairman is his new gig since retirement.) We're going to have to wash clothes again eventually, right? And that's not a job I want to get started on if I'm not going to be able to finish it. There was a load of sheets sitting there, and so I said to him, "Are you up for fixing the washing machine today?" And he allowed as how he was. So, I start the machine, and things were going along just fine. When it came to the spin cycle, the Resident Repairman stood by...just in case...and it was spinning okay, and not too noisy, albeit a little slow, when all of a sudden smoke starts coming up from under the hood. Uh-oh. That wasn't a good sign at all. And it was a lot of smoke...enough to set off the smoke alarm. He shut the thing down and then set in for a day of repairing the worn out bearing that is responsible for this debacle. So, I'll skip the messy details (and I do mean "messy") and say that after working on it for hours, he declared, "It's dead, Jim." That's right...our smoking washing machine is toast. (Someone had to say it.)

And all of that to say that we're picking up a new one at Lowe's today...a Maytag top-loader...because you know I can't wait to do the laundry. It reminds me of when we got our first washer and dryer (used). It was a set of those old Frigidaires...copper-colored. The ones that agitated up and down. After three years of laundromats, I was excited to be doing laundry in my own house...so excited, I was practically taking clean clothes out of the closet just so I could use the washing machine. Those days are done...and you can bring in a new washing machine every day...I'll still not want to wash clothes.

So anyway...despite this newest calamity, I did have some time for sewing. I made two more practice stitches of the bee motif:

Since my quilt is called "Bee Loving," I decided the bee's flight path could include a heart or two.

Satisfied that I could quilt the bee, I got to work stabilizing the quilt by stitching in the ditch in all the sashings and borders. I kind of like this idea I learned from Lori Kennedy. It might not be right for every quilt, but it does feel more secure when I start rumpling the quilt up for quilting the individual blocks.

That took most of the day, and then I was ready to quilt the first block. It was nearly time to make dinner, and so I quilted the bee and its flight path, and then started to quilt around the embroidery motif.

Originally, I had in mind to quilt all the blocks the same, but then discarded that idea upon realizing that all the blocks are not the same. The designs for some of them are off center and don't leave a lot of room on one side or the other.

Some have lots of open space.

And some are downright crowded with embroidery.

So each block will be done differently, and I'll decide as I come to them how much or how little to quilt.

That's what I'll be working on today, between washing machine pick-up, and CSA pick-up. Oh yes, and it's time to get ready for the greatest show on earth.

Pets on Quilts 2017

I'm going to try to get my posts written up for that today too.

20 comments from clever and witty friends:

WoolenSails said...

I had a front loader and when it died, I went back to the top loader, not worth the extra cost and didn't see how the front, did any better or having any more room. Now I am waiting for the dryer to go next, so far it is still working, but seems to take too much time to dry. Love the stitchery on that quilt, really fun to match the designs like that.


CJ Smith said...

I feel your pain! To me, Hell on earth is the time spent sitting in a laundromat! I tell people you can take a way my microwave, you can take away my dishwasher, even my clothes dryer, but if you even look at my washing machine your life is going to flash through your eyes! Money well spent.

claudia said...

I always had used washers and dryers (until I moved up here) and I was the repair person du jour. (My dad raised me in the garage, and that history has come in handy) I was pretty lucky, or maybe just good at picking out good used appliances. I never had to do much in the repair department. Fast forward to the machine(s) I have now. UGH! I had to get the stacked washer/dryer. I had problems from the get go, and they could never figure it out. I just watched when the problems would start and avoid repeating what I did. It's just one of the cycles doesn't want to work and it's a cycle I wouldn't use that often anyway.
I love your flying bee motif! It's so cute and appropriate for the quilt!

Renata S said...

Excellent execution of the bee motif. New wash machines take some getting use to. Looking forward to hearing about your road trip.

liniecat said...

An inspired idea to include flight path hearts and delightful little bees!
Least your house sitter won't have the stress of having the old washer throw a wobbly in your absence lol
I have a list of things to be done if your Repairnan gets stuck for work lol

works4me said...

Your bee design is fabulous. Well done. I still can't bring myself to free-motion quilt. Eventually, I will.

I hope they have the washer you want in stock so there is one less thing to worry about when you are away.

Quilting Babcia said...

A new washing machine is exciting. ... for about a day. All depends on how many months you have to drag the laundry to the always-shabby laundromat. I never felt the clothes were really clean after using those machines. Hope you like the new one! Your bee quilting motifs are coming along beautifully.

Shirley Elliott said...

The bee quilt is beautiful and you have quilting the bee's flight path down perfectly!

crazy quilter said...

Sorry about the machine. Mine died a few years ago and since I detest front loaders I had to search a while before I found the top loading machine I wanted. Oh well at least now the new machine will be there when u need her.. Lol I too detest laundry eve if it is a necessary evil. But laundry mats I hate more!! Love your Bee design your quilt will be fabulous!

Kate said...

Sorry you had to endure the demise of the sewing machine. At least you had a resident engineer that could write out the death certificate. It took us 3 weeks and 2 different repair guys to get that verdict. I don't like laundry either, but using a laundromat is worse.

Looks like you got a good start on the quilting. It's going to be very cute when it's all finished.

Dana Gaffney said...

I pick new appliances by what they have in stock that I can just bring home so I can put the whole ordeal behind me.
Love the bees!

piecefulwendy said...

We stayed with a top loader after ours that we had (for 15+ years) died. I think the bee stitch is just so stinking cute! Can't wait to see the finished quilt!

kc said...

Oh my! I've been out of wifi range lately, so I hadn't caught up with your debacles of late, but sorry about your washing machine...I have also experienced the failure/repair, rinse and repeat cycle more than I care to admit. Sometimes a death certificate is a relief!

I ab-sew-lutely LOVE the bee and its heartful flight path. Just perfect for thus, or any garden, quilt! And you certainly nailed it on only 2 tries, quite impressive!

We have just yesterday returned from a month and a half on the road and I can't wait to get sewing again. Go was needing a dashing motif, hope you don't mind if I steal the flight path? Long ago, I decided that since I can't seem to master the typical, non-crossing meander, I might as well embrace the lazy loops. That and straight line is about all I can manage, unless I use a purchased or self-digitized machine embroidery design. I looove your addition on the hearts!!

Gretchen Weaver said...

Do NOT get a high efficiency washer! I can't wait until mine dies. As soon as anything goes wrong, it is out of here. I'm not even going to call a repairman (my husband is not the repairman). I'll be going to Lowes or someplace and the new washer will not be an HI.

allthingzsewn said...

Your bees are adorable, this quilt is really going to be cute. Sorry for your loss, but you have gained a bill. Oh, sorry about that too.

Lynette said...

Barbara, your bees are the knees!!!! So superbly cute. Sorry about the washer. I'm another one who looks to the day of being able to change back to a top-loader. Our front-loading HE is only 6 years old, though, so I'll probably be waiting a while. . .

Dar said...

You crack me up with your "so excited to do wash" remarks, especially when you got your 1st machines at home -- taking clean clothes off beds and closets just to do the wash! Too funny.
But I understand. :) Your bees are looking just bee-u-ti-ful buzzing all around your blocks.

Brown Family said...

You let the smoke out of the washer. That is usually a good sigh that you have toast!

THe bees are looking great!

Cherry said...

Tuesday must have been Dead Washing Machine Day! The repairman was out in the morning, declared it well on the downward slop to Deadsville and by afternoon, the DH & I were at Home Depot, picking out a new one. It's being delivered this afternoon. Unfortunately, I HAVE to do laundry tonight.

quiltzyx said...

Adios old washer, hello new top loader! When I was kitty sitting I considered bringing a load of laundry to Kim's. Then rethought that thought as she has those front loading beasts & I have not been trained on them. Gave up the thought & just did a load when I got home Sunday night. I don't terribly mind going to the laundramat occasionally. At least you can get it all done in one go.

Looking forward to catching up here & seeing more of the fun bees!