Monday, February 28, 2011

Movie Monday :: Sunday's At Tiffany's

What a lovely, romantic movie. I caught it on Lifetime, but had never heard about it. I looked it up online and it has mixed reviews...people (like me) who hadn't read James Patterson's book loved it, people who had were disappointed the story had changed.

Following the plotlines or not, it was an interesting twist on falling again for your first love. In this case, as Jane is stressing out over trying to plan her wedding, she sees her imaginary friend from childhood, all grown up. After thinking she might be imagining him again, she embraces his comforting presence and manages to plan her wedding - until they kiss.

When her fiance is away, they recconnect and Jane quickly realizes what she feels for th man she's planning to marry isn't love, but what she feels for Michael is.

But Michael believes he'll be taken away again on her birthday, just as he was when she was a child. So they end things again. But then...there is the happy ending that I simply adore. (sigh)

Loved it!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

I think I will...I think I will...

I love when life happens in positive ways...but I'm hoping for a boring couple of weeks so I can wrap up the missing parts of Driven to Distraction :)

  • Write scenes for Driven - pictures, mirror, family vacation, Trent's mom, sex museum...
  • Workout 5 times
  • Schedule glass blowing and pole dancing classes. (ya heard me...I'll do it eventually!)

Friday, February 25, 2011

And then it snowed

Ah, I had such lofty goals for the week. And then it snowed.

I love a good snow day, keeping cozy in the house in my pajamas, sipping cocoa and keeping my lap warm with my laptop. But my kids were up earlier then they get dragged out of bed for school. And Hubba Bubba had stored away their snow things in the name of efficiency.

So after much bitching, I scaled the 16-foot ladder and brought them down. And then we all went out to play. Turns out, BabyGirl likes snow a whole lot more in her own backyard!

So...lots of last week's to-do's will be repeated next week. I did manage ::

  • Shampoo the carpets (living & Desitin smeared Grace's room)

  • Workout ( snowed! if you count spending hours on the carpet...3 times)

  • Watch a movie for next week's movie on Monday (Confessions of a Shopaholic)

  • Got tickets for the Usher concert

  • Play in the snow with the kids

  • Kristina McMorris's launch party!

  • Toes polished (recycled with a glittery top coat of New Years barefoot in barcelona on my fingers

  • Wrote the Crazy Horse scene and the he's in love scene without saying he's in love. Because that would have been too easy, though much faster to write!

Up next week...more writing!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Workout Wednesday :: Bootcamp

When my workout partner and I first signed up at the gym, we decided we would try all the group exercise classes once. Just to see what they were like...and because I have ADD and changing things up keeps me engaged.

We both thought we would have to crawl out of bootcamp, expecting a drill seargent and thousands of push-ups. Instead we have an adorable instructor with an amazing body that makes you want to do the ridiculous things she suggests.

Like get into a plank position and inch your way across the room. Or in my case...over 8 inches before you collapse. Or do a wall sit while alternating bicep curls with hammer curls. For 2 minutes. Guess how long it took me to stand up? Hey, I kept up with the arm work. Whatevs.

The 3-day/week class is different each time (step & tone on Mondays, cardio & tone on Wednesdays, and stations on Friday). I love when we do things in short bursts because it gives me less time to hate it and complain about it. I can throw a medicine ball, do squats with a ketel ball, push a punching bag, do crunches, bridges, lunges...anything for a minute.

There's not enough stretching at the end for me, and I have to modify a lot of it because of the wrist that's pinned together and the plantar faciaitis, but I make it work.

And really need a shower after.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Movie Monday :: The Bounty Hunter

I think I missed the part that explained why they broke up in the first place...which matters in romance novels, but didn't seem to bother me in a movie.

Following the break up and divores, her career clossoms, his tanks. The former cop takes up as a bounty hunter to help pay off his gambling debts, and gets his perfect job - bringing in his ex wife!

Except she's in some trouble of her own.

I kinda wish they would have hooked up at the Cupid Inn...but I think that has to do with my crush on Gerard Butler. I have faith that Jennifer Aniston probably tried to talk the director into it as well...alas... it's still fun :)

Sunday, February 20, 2011

This Week in Jenna Land...

  • Send a chapter of Driven to CP
  • Make sure I am up to date with my crits for CP
  • Write a chapter of Driven
  • Paint my toenails a decent color (Grace's neon green choice was only fun the first week)
  • Workout 5 times
  • Watch a movie for next week's movie on Monday (any suggestions?)
  • Decide if I'm going to a concert...a real one. I saw Sir Mix-A-Lot when I was 12 (do NOT tell my mom) and Waylong Jennings on the lawn at Britt...and that's it. Am I prepared to get tweened out at Katy Perry or Usher?
  • Schedule glass blowing and pole dancing classes. (ya heard me)
  • Kristina McMorris's launch party!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Private Scandal Excerpt

Samhain selected an excerpt for Private Scandal ...and I like it ;)

Copyright © 2011 Jenna Bayley-Burke

All rights reserved — a Samhain Publishing, Ltd. publication

“Where have you been?” The deep voice rocked her back on her heels and the slamming of a car door sent adrenaline rushing through her veins. She grabbed for the can of pepper spray on her keys as her brain slowly registered the hulking figure walking towards her.

She had half a mind to spritz him with the pepper spray anyway. “Damn it, Brandon. You scared me.”

“I shouldn’t have. I’ve been watching you for two blocks. If you’re going to live in a place like this, you need to be aware of your surroundings.” He crossed his arms over his chest, his shirt bunching around his shoulders with the movement.

“You shouldn’t jump out in front of women, or you might find yourself on the wrong end of a can of mace. There, we’re even. One piece of advice for another.” She stepped off the curb, hoping to get across the street and up the stairs before Brandon caught up with her.

His fingers wrapped around her arm, keeping her from fleeing. “I saw Ava.”

Megan froze. The problem with sleeping with the enemy was that they knew exactly where you were vulnerable. She needed to know that her sisters were all right. She hadn’t spoken with either of them since they were thrown out of the hotel and Briana decided to visit the cat-loving aunt they hadn’t seen in twenty years.

They used to talk almost every hour, and now the only sound between them was silence. She needed to hear their voices, but she’d settle for knowing one of them was okay.

She turned to face Brandon, cocking her head to the side and trying to appear haughty for all she was worth, which wasn’t much anymore. “And?”

“She said you had quite the fight, you know, about me. It seems that to her, you were all about defending my honor. And yet when I see you, you can’t be bothered to even step on my toes. What’s that about, Meg?”

“I didn’t have all the facts. It turned out you are every bit as cold and ruthless as my sister thought.”

“Come on now, Meg. Cold isn’t something I’ve ever been around you.”

“You don’t feel the chill?” She stared into his dark eyes, wishing she’d realized that what she’d read as concern for all those years hadn’t been anything close.

He met her gaze and held it, doing the most convincing acting job of appearing hurt. As if she could do him any damage. Nothing another big deal and Gemma Ryan couldn’t soothe, anyway. She shook off his arm and took a step back.

“What else did Ava say?”

“You want to know, get in the car.” He used the remote to unlock the doors on his Escalade.

“I’m not going anywhere with you.”

“I’m not discussing your sister in the middle of the street. So either you get in the car and let me take you to lunch like the civilized woman you used to be, or we go upstairs to what you call an apartment and talk through what is going on. Your choice.” He opened the passenger door of the SUV and stood beside it.

If he needed to tell her something about Ava in private, it couldn’t be good. Her gut twisted with fear and the memory of the last time she’d seen her older sister. They’d fought horribly about where to go and what to do. Ava had always let men use her, sleeping with guys who didn’t deserve her time, let alone her body. And she’d thought that was the solution again, find a boyfriend who’d let them move in until everything was sorted out. It was sad, more so because Megan had left the hotel with the intention of asking Brandon for help, and found his lips occupied by a tramp he’d always described as a friend.

She shook her head, refusing to wallow in her own mistakes. If Ava was in trouble, she needed to know about it. Better to find out the details in public. Whenever Brandon was too close, she tended to forget about what she’d seen in that hallway.

Not wanting to give Brandon the satisfaction of hearing her agree to his demands, she merely climbed into the passenger seat and buckled herself in while he closed the door. The smell of his aftershave swirled around her, but she refused to let it remind her of what used to be. He was Gemma’s now. Maybe she ought to find a way to let the tramp know just who’d picked out this particular scent for him.

She stared out the window as Brandon got in and started the SUV. She’d always been careful to keep things private, to maintain a clandestine air about their relationship. It was supposed to keep things exciting, keep him from getting bored and moving on. Her father had once said the surest way to get a man to leave was to ask him to stay, so she never gave herself the option. She’d always been the one to leave, showing up unexpectedly to keep him off-balance.

When Brandon started hinting about making their relationship more public, Megan had been purposely aloof. He’d said he wanted a ring on her finger, but he never bought one. He’d claimed he wanted to be able to take her out, but he never invited her. It had given her a hope that she knew better than to have.

Men like him, men like her father, didn’t love anything but the thrill of the chase—whether they were chasing women or money. She’d thought she could outplay him, but he moved faster than the scenery outside the car window. She closed her eyes and prayed Ava hadn’t been burned the same way.

“Are you asleep?”

Megan blinked at the sound of Brandon’s voice, unsure if she had drifted off. “Of course not.”

Yet somehow the car had stopped at an Italian chain restaurant they often had delivered. As she blinked to awareness, she realized this would be the first time they went to a restaurant together. Sure, they’d shared a meal alongside dozens of their common friends at parties, but whenever they were alone, they were always ensconced in his penthouse. It was right across from her father’s, so no one ever questioned her coming and goings from the hotel. She’d thought she was being so smart, but in the end she’d learned the hard way what a fool she’d been.

Glancing over at him was a mistake. The look in his warm brown eyes could easily be mistaken for kindness, she could simply ignore that it must be pity. Guilt might be niggling at his conscience and she wondered if Gemma Ryan knew him well enough to notice.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Self-sufficient Me

What a crazy week! Hubba Bubba was enjoying the sunshine of Colorado wind farms while the kids and I celebrated Valentine's Day. BabyGirl and I got each other tulips, and I gifted myself a salt lamp I've been wanting for a while. The boys gorged on their party candy... and I went dancing with my girlfriends...ya know, at the gym.

Work got pushed aside with the lack of a co-parent...and the science project that ate my life! TallBoy has been steadily working on it, but all of the sudden he panicked about putting it together and making it look right and getting enough points Talk about a lot of work!

I'm so glad that this week ::

  • TallBoy's science project got turned in
  • SmallBoy got to have a much desired playdate
  • I managed to get in enough writing time to finish a chapter
  • I gave a presentation at a PEO Sisterhood meeting, which meant a lot to me since they gave me a partail scholarship for college
  • worked out 6 times
  • had a breakfast morning & shopping date with my best girls
  • my neice started crawling
  • made my favorite apple brie bread braid. Yum.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Workout Wednesday :: Pilates

I thought Pilates was something you did at a studio with strange contraptions that looked like torture devices. Then I saw a pilates video and thought it was soething you did with bands and hoops.
Then I took a pilates class.
Oh. My. Ouch.
My favorite pilates class at the gym focuses on core strength, but also on the back and hamstrings. Our instructor has three basic workouts - abs, back, butt - and you can sure tell which one you did the next day!
My favorite part of class is the stretching at the end. I love to stretch, but some of the positions we get into to stretch the smaller muscles pilates engages are hilarious. I've named one, the ho pose. Because honestly, it's a pose porn aficianados would be familiar with. Every time the instructor says to get into 'low frog' I hear 'ho dog'. It is just plain wrong.
And yet it's one of the things I like. I can laugh my way through the workout. This weeks class started with a reminder to lift the pelvic floor as often as you think about it...and then one woman said to do it or you'd wind up with a prolapsed uterus. Which is not a funny situation, I am sure, but I'll be darned if it didn't make me immediately kegel, and then giggle at my reaction. Go a kegel and giggle.
It's not easy!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Movie Monday :: When In Rome

This was clever - a type-A New Yorker rushes to Italy for her die-hard romantic sister's wedding....and at a pity party jumps into a fountain and 'frees' a few of the coins, tossed in as a wish for love.

Magic and mayhem ensues as the men who make the wishes think they are in love with her...all the while the guy she's falling for has to dance around them, and her own worries that she took his wish as well.

Cute, clever, funny...perfect date movie.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Weekly Intentions

Write a chapter in Driven
Work out 5 times
Eat well
Romance presentation @ PEO Sisterhood meeting
Pizza, popcorn & movie night with the boys!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Friday Accomplishments

I know how embracing gratitude can change your life...I've live it in the past two years and have been bless in ways I couldn't dare imagine when I started. After prayers with the kids each night we give thanks for three things we're grateful for, which can be the entertaining highlight of my day. (I'm thankful for chicken nuggets, lemon cake and the Wii. Oh, and money so I can pay you back. - Small Boy, he totally gets it)

So, I want to start celebrating my weekly accomplishments, hoping that will start a positive trend.

I'm so glad I ::

have a best friend who went to dental school

chose rest over workouts

found a yummy soup at Costco

finally returned the chapters I was supposed to critique ages ago

Not much...but I had an extra special reaction to last week's root canal and crown placement. Because I'm just special like that. I'm ready for my mouth to get back to normal.

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

The Pink Heart Society: What Are You Reading Thursday :: The Scandal Serie...

The Pink Heart Society: What Are You Reading Thursday :: The Scandal Serie...: "Pink Heart Society editor Jenna Bayley-Burke is hooked! After attending a book launch party like a total fan girl, she devoured one book...a..."

Workout Wednesday :: Cardio Jam

Twice a week I get dressed up to go out drinking and dancing with my girlfriends. Since we're the post-thirty mommy set, this means workout clothes, water, and Cardio Jam. The class is our gym's hip-hop version of Zumba. The class is easily divided into the five girls who can dance and the forty of us who don't go out dancing anymore for a reason!

It's the most fun you can have exercising, even my neighbor's twelve-year-old will go with us on occasion, and she is usually much too cool for us. I like dancing around, and listening to club-worthy music. The workout is probably similar to an hour of Just Dance 2, but the social aspect make it much more fun.

Monday, February 07, 2011

Movie Monday :: The Break-up Artist

Britney wants to make break-ups kinder, and so starts a break-up service. She's successful, until she is swept off her feet buy one of the men she's hired to break-up with. As she falls for him, her business starts to decline, thanks to a new break-up service in town. And then she finds out the man she's fallen for is her rival and only dating her for information.

More determined than ever that she can't believe in love and needing to save her business, she takes a job helping on her her sisters dumpees become the perfect man for her. And she succeeds...only she winds up falling for him, and he for her.

Sunday, February 06, 2011

The Pink Heart Society: Male on Monday :: Feeling Lucky

The Pink Heart Society: Male on Monday :: Feeling Lucky: "Like most Monday mornings, Pink Heart Society editor Jenna Bayley-Burke isn't feeling too it's time for a pick-me up. Let's get ..."

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Workout Wednesday :: Water Aerobics

If you have a naughty mind, and a friend who's mind is dirtier than careful in water aerobics. We've taken two, a deep water class with a bouancy belt that was like 8th grade gym class in the water. It went buy quickly, but wasn't a very good workout. However, my friend did get lucky, or maybe the old man swimming past her as she touched his butt got lucky. Heck, it probably made his day!

Shallow water aerobics was a better workout, making use of pool noodles. Now...The big black noodles are the hardest and give you the best workout.

No joke, the instructor said that.

The white noodles are good too, a little gentler.

I cannot make this schizz up.

Now put the noodle between your legs and ride it like a rocking horse.

You see what I mean?!?

I may go back just for the comedy!

Tuesday, February 01, 2011