Cyborg Sewing

Have you ever wondered about technology and how much it is involved in our daily lives?  I’m not talking about how it influenced our lives, I’m saying how much it is involved.  I don’t mean using the computer for work, or Facebook-ing, or even our smartphones. I mean every day activities of life. Neither did I until these past few days. Stop rolling  your eyes, I am not going to get all philosophogical, but I did have a moment.

E55AB486-636E-46A5-ABF8-5DA2264CC617Big D. and I took a ride to Lancaster—Ephrata PA to be more exact. My goal was to bring my Bernina 440 QE to be serviced but ended up walking out with an upgrade – 770 QE.  It was a huge leap of an upgrade.

Now mind you, I was happy with my 440 but Ervine from Hinkletown Sewing made me a “offer I couldn’t refuse”.  I said good-by to my 440 (until now I realized I never named her…she was always “440”. How impersonal!  Like a cyborg. Come to think of it, my New Home doesn’t have a name either – only my Featherweight.  Do only featherweights get a name?  I will leave this for another discussion.) and put the newest addition to  my family in the car. I have to admit there were feelings of guilt leaving 440.  Sometimes my attachment to inanimate objects is a little much.

It was on the way home I realized that “770” really IS a cyborg.  It is ALL computerized.  It was then I though how much technology is involved in my life.  My washer, dryer, car (that “low tire pressure” light gives me such anxiety) all computerized.  I don’t know what I would do without navigation – I think I’d forgotten how to read a map. MY COFFEE MAKER!! – EEEGADS! Even my camera doesn’t use film anymore.

Does technology really make life easier or just more convenient? Don’t get me wrong, it’s cool that 770 can cut my thread and raise and lower the presser foot just by pushing a button.  But honestly how hard is it to grab the scissors or raise or lower the lever (oh, by the way, 770 doesn’t have a lever to raise/lower the foot). I just don’t know the answer.

I often think of past quilters/sewers when I use my Featherweight, I think of their creativity and their ingenuity. I am excited to get to know 770 and maybe think of future quilters and creators.




A New Fresh Look

Have you noticed Memo’s new fresh look?  Special thanks to my web designer, Nick, who added some well needed sunshine to the site.  The grey background is gone and so is the 1980’s mint green.  Sometimes all we need is a fresh coat of paint and not a total remodeling.

I am much happier and I can’t wait to share with you all that goes on.

Mythology and Multitasking

Growing up, my mother would say, “If you want something done, ask a busy woman.”   Throughout the years I have often come back to this philosophy especially when I found myself “multitasking”.  I know every woman who is a mom, works -part time or full time and enjoys interests outside of these two elements of her life….multitasks!  You know what I’m talking about…arguing with the insurance company on the phone while making dinner and entertaining the dog all the while thinking about the on-line training modules needed to be completed  before school starts.

So, when I was at the the new exhibit, The Brain at the Franklin Institute, I was astonished, even agased, to learn that multitasking is a myth.  How preposterous.  Big D. just stood by me and shook his head as to say, “Told you so”.  For many years, I would race through 2 or 3 tasks while he completed one.  Hmmmm.IMG_4969    I wonder if this  has any impact on Alzheimer’s Disease.  Strong, competent, and intelligent women of my family – phenomenal multi-taskers, have subcommed to this horrible disease.

I pride myself on making decisions both at home and in the health office based on evidence based research.  I think more research is clearly needed but I think for now I am going to try to focus more on the task at hand and less “multi-tasking”.

Do you multitask?  What do you think about this?   Well, I am going to sew some blocks for my Black Cats and Pumpkins quilt, while I get some laundry done and see what’s in the refrigerator for dinner.


Painting and Cooking

I have spent the past few days painting the trim in my kitchen.  This is no easy one day project.  My kitchen is an open floor plan  and the trim goes on for miles.  Oh, it stops every once in a while for a gargage door, laundry room door, pantry door, window trim and on and on and on…Oh look – we’re in Texas!

Last night Big D. took pity on me and ordered in pizza for dinner.  Pizza dinner was fun with salad and sangria however, I don’t think two night in a row of take out is going to fly.  Preparing a dinner after paining was not sounding like something I wanted to do.  I had some salmon in the refrigerator and Big D. really likes when I make Asian-Fusion Salmon.  It’s great when it’s cold too so I thought it would be perfect.  I’ve had this recipe forever – torn out of a magazine I can’t even remember which one and when. Here is what  you need:

I made this dish even easier using a disposable pan.


In a bowl combine:

4 Tbsp Hoisin sauce
2 Tbsp brown sugar
2 Tbsp soy sauce
2Tbsp rice vinegar
1Tbsp toasted sesame oil
2 tsp grated ginger
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
2 Tbsp corn starch

Here is what you do:

Place 4-6 (8oz) salmon filets in a shallow baking dish/pan coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with kosher salt (not too much remember the soy sauce is salty). Spoon half the mixture over the filets and bake in a preheated 400 degree oven for 10 minutes.  Spoon the rest of the mixture, sprinkle with sliced scallions, and bake for another 10 minutes.

It really is that yummy, it’s fool proof, and it’s easy.  Hint: I did not want to turn on the oven on a 95 degree summer day in NJ. so I fired up the barbecue and lit it heat until it reached 400. Even easier!

Hope you like it.

Measure Twice, Cut Once…

Or cut a bazillion times.

I am making Lori Holt’s black cat pattern –  you can find the pattern as a download from her blog – beeinmybonnet, – and as with Lori’s Vintage Farm blocks, this block has a gazillion pieces.  It also gives you the choice of a 6″ or 12″ block and I chose the 12″ (in the 6″ she wanted me to cut 7/8″ squares…ahh,  no! So 12″ it is!); the block has 5 sections and 26 pieces.   This would have been the perfect project to use my alphabet  pins ( see how I made those in a previous post) but I was cutting 3 at one time. So back to tiny pieces of paper and pins.

Did you notice my horrible habit?? I tend to leave the blade open -Yikes. I get yelled at at the shop all the time (and with good reason)

To be fair, there is only one completed block cut -well that’s not even true – the cat is completely cut, but is missing the background (which by the way has 11 pieces).  I am trying to get as much cut as I can before  ‘Sew What’ at Mouse Creek. It is nearly impossible to concentrate and cut all these pieces with conversations amuck but then again, I was watching Pioneer Woman and had to re-cut several  pieces.  Listening  to her recipe on Chocolate Pecan Treats and cutting is just as bad as cutting at ‘Sew What’s’.

Now that summer is here, and school is out, I hope to finish (and start and finish) some projects.  What are you working on this summer.  Leave a comment and let me know!

Happy Summer Sewing
XO Annemarie