Saturday, April 28, 2012


The lilacs from my tree are fragrant and appreciated this year.

Jess and David, Easter Sunday, 
in front of the "not yet blooming" lilac tree

View from the back yard . . .
 a different view, from the deck

Incentive . . . 

What moves you?  Or rather, what moves you to . . . well . . . move?

I need something to give me the incentive to move, whether it is getting out for a walk, cleaning my house, writing a post, or correcting papers.

Usually, the incentive is, real or imagined, urgency.  I can get an incredible amount of clutter picked up in ten minutes if someone calls and says "Hey, we're in the neighborhood, just checking to see if you're home!" After 20+ years of marriage, David automatically pitches in and grabs the vacuum for the relentless black dog hair that covers every surface, seemingly within moments of being vacuumed!

Lately my incentive to get myself out of the house for a walk has been my upcoming trip to Europe, and knowing I want to be able to walk long distances to enjoy all the sights.  I'm still fighting some pain, but I'm up to a consistent 1.15 miles, with slight up and downhill sections.  Next week, I push it out to 1.5, I'm hoping.  Nikki isn't the best walking partner, as she pulls me.  So, we walk with me holding a morsel of dog treat in my hand that is next to her, and I am saying constantly, "Stay close, Nik, stay close."  It works, most of the time.  We both need the exercise!

And, because the end of the year is nearing at breakneck speed, it's super hard to get enthusiastic about correcting papers and recording scores . . . I'm exhausted before I even get started! I ask myself almost daily, "Why oh why do I assign so much work?" I can count on a good 2-4 hours each weekend of catch up, not counting what I do nightly. I know teachers who "recycle" papers; I just can't.  I have to write all over them, in my attempt to guide and encourage and correct! Some students read and appreciate my efforts, and I do it for them!

I have a million post topics racing around in my brain, but finding the time to force myself to sit and write, and edit, and revise, and find photos, and mess with inserting them, and now, trying to figure out the new blogger . . . I find myself reading other blogs instead of writing my own! (But, today, I'm going to post, come you know what!)

Last weekend, my incentive to get out of the house was twofold, gorgeous sunshine and Kailyn being home for a visit. It wasn't too tough to push myself out the door!

First stop was "Real Deals" in Battle Ground.  I bought the blue birdbath above to put in my old cement one, as the cement no longer holds water.  It's been patched a dozen times, has been in the same spot for over 20 years, and grown rather mossy over time.  (I happen to love it to death.  My uncle had a cement works and made it about 40 years ago, and I inherited it, and cherish it, despite it's lack of water holding capacity!) It also leans, but it quite heavy and no one has taken the time to straighten it up.  I have been looking for a small birdbath for the poor birds that is esthetically more pleasing than my ratty Tupperware bowl I've been using for the past few years!  (I won't bother with a picture of that one!)

I was thrilled to find this sweet blue one, although I thought it would fill up the old birdbath more completely. Kailyn had to gather a few rocks in order to balance the sweet new birdbath.

We headed further north for Woodland, and opening day at Hulda Klager's Lilac Gardens.  We forgot to take pictures while we were there, but here is a photo of the lilac I was searching for to replace one Jess and I bought that died a couple years ago.  It's called "Sensation" and is a hybrid. 

This is what it is supposed to look like . . .

This is the one I purchased . . . hopefully, I'll catch it when it's fully bloomed. Right now, it's about four feet tall, the same height as the lilac tree in the back yard was, when I purchased it about 20 years ago.  We also bought a couple of "babies" in 4" pots.  Those I'll probably keep in pots for a few years, just in case we decide to move, so I can take them with me! (I actually kept the one in the backyard in a ten gallon pot for several years before planting it.  I knew where I wanted it, but needed to wait for the $$ to build our addition and the deck first!)

Tooling on down the road, we arrive at the Tulip Festival. 
Gorgeous tulips as far as the eye could see . . .

And, especially gorgeous close up, with Kailyn in the midst!

Kailyn took lots of photos, 
and we will be ordering many bulbs to plant this fall!

Oh, but back to incentive . . .

Today, my incentive is not too exciting.  I have misplaced my hearing aid remote, and I can't seem to manage to figure out how to change the volume, only the program, with the buttons on the aids.  It's been very frustrating at work, to the point where I didn't wear them all week.  The kids are too loud when I have them on!!  I could just call the place I got them, but I'm pretty stubborn, and I know that remote has to be SOMEWHERE in this house!  (I've already searched the car, which is where I found it last time I lost it!)

My other motivation is to find my camera bag, with my extra battery pack.  It too has disappeared.  My current battery is on the charger, and I can't take any photos until either it's charged, or I find the  bag!  Sheesh!  I put my camera in my purse without the bag last weekend (less bulk) and I don't remember where I put the darn bag!! It should be in the car, but it isn't as I already searched it for the remote and didn't come across the bag.  Sigh.

The problem I'm finding as I age (not so gracefully) is that I will do something so random, (not to mention illogical) and not remember what I did, or where I was when I did it.  I don't fret (yet) that I am fully involved in dementia, as I still know my name, the year and who is president (the test they gave my mom when her alzheimer's was discovered).  I think I am just enmeshed in a case of sensory and data overload.  There is simply too much stuff in my brain rolodex and it takes forever to run through it! (And, I forget what I'm looking for enroute!)

(I really am still on the topic of incentive, in case you're wondering, dear readers!)

The sun is shining right now, and it takes every ounce of my being to force myself to stay inside and find my lost objects.  The house needs a good cleaning as well, since I didn't do a lick last weekend when Kailyn was home.  There is laundry to finish, dishes to put away, and dratted dog hair to vacuum.  

I'm not certain how long my incentive to move will last, but it's time to take advantage of the flickering of "want to" and publish for now.

BTW ~ my upper GI came out well, no news about the biopsies, which is a good sign.  My doctor said things looked good, and that next time I get the two for one special, and upper GI and a colonoscopy!  Wow!  I can hardly wait for that day to come!

We brought two bouquets of tulips home with us last Saturday . . . they don't look like this anymore, but my lilacs are still lovely, and there is more to be had.


  1. What motivates me to move is not having anything better to do. You are working, Sandi, and I'm not. My main goal in life these days is staying fit and healthy, and I've got a great partner who is right now chopping up and steaming our week's veggies. I read, write, play, and wouldn't have much time left over if I still had a job like you do!

    P.S. Give yourself a break. You are doing just great, in my opinion. Didn't you just recently get a NEW KNEE? :-)

  2. I am not easily motivated these days I am ashamed to say. ;-)
    Great news about the upper GI. I had an endoscopy on Wednesday afternoon and I am also awaiting biopsy results.

  3. What wonderful photos of springtime! Lilacs are some of my favorite blooms. I love the way they fill the house with scent. Mine in Denver is just starting to bloom. (I'll probably be away...) Hot where I am here in AZ. Hope you find all your lost items, Sandi. Lucinda was lost for awhile t his AM but we finally found her being naughty!

  4. You are very busy! No wonder you feel tired.
    Love the new birdbath and all the pics.
    Hope you're having a good weekend and got all your paperwork done early. ;)

  5. I know where you are at, we have all been there - all over the place, and thinking we are getting nowhere. Be comforted in knowing this is how life is. Sometimes we are in charge, and sometimes life is in charge and we don't know where to run to first. Calm down, take note of what you need to do, don't listen to the noise, keep focus on the dream, on the plan, on what is needed, on what you want to happen. They are really all the same thing. You do your work well, so just keep doing that, you have made plans before, and this will work out (you have help in this so let them help), and most of all think of a lot of this as the small stuff and you know the mantra, "don't sweat the small stuff".

    I say this being a person who sweats every teeny, tiny bot of the small stuff, but I really know better.

  6. I hear ya...I went through some real long days of not having any incentive either. I remember when I was teaching, by the end of the year I was just plain worn out. Remember, you started the year just barely post surgery. I think you should pat yourself on the back for making it through. I'm sure you will have plenty of incentive once school is out.

    Love the blue bird bath! Love the spring flowers.

  7. This post is well-written; you had me til the end. I know what you mean about black dog hair, as I had a black Lab back in the 1970s. No dogs or cats in the house right now, and I don't think we'll ever have them. Too much of a hassle. But, I babysit my 2 yr old grandson, and that is plenty! Lol. God bless you!

  8. What beautiful photos and lovely flowers. My sole lilac tree devoted all its blooming time to growing, so I did not get a thing. I did buy a new one, and haven't decided where to plant it. So I will re-pot it over and over until it finds a permanent home. Such fragrance!

  9. I love all the flowers. Mine aren't sure what to do with all the rain, snow, frost, not the best year for my flower beds.

    Just a few more weeks of grading and then off to Europe!

  10. What a busy post! Seems you are motivated well enough to keep pushing ahead. Lilacs here are not out till mid may.

  11. Dear Sandi, . . . incentive is so important for many of us. Knowing that which will get us moving is essential if we truly want to feel that we've accomplished something at the end of the day. And I'm one of those people who need to feel a sense of accomplishment.

    Today, I wanted to visit all the blogs I read and leave a comment. But in the midst of trying to do that, my computer started acting up and I spent 3 1/2 hours trying to discover on Goggle how to fix things. Couldn't make it work. So I have a 15-minute appointment with one of the "Geniuses" at the Apple Store on the Country Club Plaza for Thursday. I surely hope she/he can help me get mail.

    Sandi, I want to thank you for visiting and commenting on my blog while I took April off. You always relate what I write to your own life and I so appreciate that because it makes blogging seems like a conversation between all of us.


  12. That's funny about the housework. I also move fast when I know someone is coming - I just wish company came more often, then maybe my house would stay cleaner. I love lilac bushes! I recently planted a couple, one of them bloomed real pretty, it is a dark purple. Your 'aged' birdbath is real neat, I love the moss growing on it.


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