Chilly April

Yesterday morning Surfer Ty flew back to Hawaii and I returned to my desk even as snow fell outside my window. The snow didn’t stick but the slushy rain and snow and cold made me want to be anywhere but sitting at my desk for nine hours. I did take a couple catnaps yesterday, though, and those helped but it’s going to be a long month until I see Ty again.

I know he’ll return end of April for the baby’s birth, and I know he needs to be in Hawaii–it’s Spring Break after all and one of the busiest times of the year–but the bigger I get the more I want his company. He was such good company this time, too, and so sweet. Even though I’m enormous he’s quite proud of my ‘bump’, and pleased that it’s his son growing in there. When I tell him I feel horribly unattractive he says that I’m still ‘one hot Mama’ and beautiful. And when he’s here, I do feel beautiful because he’s so protective of me. Ty doesn’t let me lift anything or do too much. It felt good letting him be the man, too. I’m competent as a single mom, but I do love the moments when I don’t have to manage everything on my own.

Now it’s Thursday and I’ve already been writing this morning. I lit a couple mango scented candles on my desk to help woo me to the keyboard as the cold front remains and its another wet and gray day. I’m hoping to complete another chapter by tonight. The writing is slow but steady and I like what I’m seeing and am intrigued as the characters grow.

This is the kind of writing I like to do. I love it when I’m hooked into my story and thinking about it all the time, playing the next scene out in my mind, testing the different ways it’ll work, or not work. I like considering different alternatives to the scene and again weighing each to see how it’ll enrich the story, or add another layer of tension or emotional complexity. Sometimes simple is best. Sometimes a chapter needs a twist.

Of course I wish I had more time. Because I’m writing slow I need the time and we’re down to 29 days before Mac is scheduled to appear and book is due before Mac so pressure’s beginning to hum.

I’ve given up reading until the book is done–a terrible sacrifice on my part as I love reading probably more than any other activity–and all social activities as well. But not reading fiction doesn’t mean I can’t read the paper, or articles on the internet. In fact, yesterday morning I was delighted when I found two great stories that support future novel ideas perfectly. One was a MSN Money article on the web, and the other was a story in yesterday’s morning paper’s sports section.  Both articles help flesh out and cement two different story proposals for the next couple books I want to write. I always get new ideas when writing hard. I don’t know why but it’s a benefit of writing, and how creativity begets creativity.

To help warm up this chilly gray day, I’m giving away a pink and white Tully’s mug, a bag of Tully’s coffee, a signed copy of Mrs. Perfect, some wonderful pink bubbles for an indulgent bath, and tons of JP reader goodies. Bring me up to speed on your family, your day, your upcoming weekend in a comment and you’re entered. The contest ends Friday night midnight PST and I’ll post the winner’s name Saturday morning.

Now I’m back to working on Shey’s book but I can’t wait to hear what you all have to say!


  1. My boys had a lot of fun yesterday pranking their Dad for April Fools Day — well, quite honestly so did I! They are young enough that simple pranks still fill them with delight! We filled Daddy’s underwear, socks, shoes and coat pockets with confetti…luckily he’s a good sport, and even cleaned up the mess himself!!!

    Glad to hear you’re enjoying this stage of your book. I am anxiously waiting for Easy on the Eyes to come out this summer!

  2. Hi Jane, Glad to hear that you are doing well and writing…even though you are missing Ty.

    We had a stressful morning here today with my little girl going to the dentist for her first filling. There were tears before we left, but she was so brave once we got there! I treated her to a book of her choice at Chapters, which she chose a Baby Mouse book (her favourite). I looked for a copy of Odd Mom Out, but they still don’t have one..augh!

    This weekend she’s attending a Brownie’s Camp (another first for her). I see more tears, but this time they’ll be mine 😉

  3. I spent lunch reading NCIS fan fic.

    I’m not normally a fan fic person – but – ya know… I REALLY want McGee and Abby to rehook up. So the fan fic satisfy that desire.

    This weekend – hopefully – I’ll get my green house up.

  4. Son is working on his rain forest biome for class and reading books that are far beyond his 3rd grade level at an amazing rate. Her highness is busy looking cute in her pink helmet and cleets for T-ball. Thankfully they are both healthy this week. Allergies have been getting the best of them and inhalers have been used in abundance lately. Can’t wait for the pollen levels to drop off!

    I’m busy making jewelry when the house is quiet and everyone is in bed. It’s when I get to wind down from the day. Hubby is crazy busy at work, and I’m along for the ride. We haven’t killed each other yet, so that’s a good sign!

    Glad to hear Mac is still doing great, and having seen you in all your pregnant glory with Jake, you are beautiful. Hang in there and write, write, write!

  5. Hi Jane,
    I am getting ready to have the family over for Easter so there was a bunch of stuff to buy today. It is a beautiful day here in Pennsylvania, it really felt like a spring day. Good luck with your book.

  6. Hi Jane,

    I am looking forward to a three day weekend with my husband. For years I have been on this work schedule where I work 9 hours a day and get everyone other friday off. Just a month ago my husband’s job just gave him that schedule also. I was not sure if I wanted my husband to have the same day off as me.
    I am used to doing my own thing on my day off and I thought he would “cramp” my style. But, believe it or not I am so loving having him with me. We go out to breakfast, go to the movies early and anything else I want to do. Just think, I almost missed out on having a good time. Anyway, I hope you have a good weekend.

  7. My long delayed promotion became official yesterday and I’ve been dancing on that high ever since. It’s especially satisfying in light of the economic situation. My friends surprised me with a little ice-cream party at Friendly’s after our choir rehearsal last night, which was lovely, and my department gave me a beautiful congratulatory bouquet of flowers to brighten my office.

    Today is beautiful here in the Garden State as two days of rain have given way to a glowing sun, warm wind, and balmy 65 degrees, successfully revitalizing my spirits. I’ve just come in from eating a sandwich on the patio of my building. It was late enough in the day that it was nearly deserted and peacefully quiet.

    And now I’m looking ahead to a 4-day weekend as my sister arrives from Arizona at the crack of oh-my-God-it’s-early tomorrow morning. She’ll be visiting for 2+ weeks. It’ll be nice to have help with home and mother things and to enjoy her company for awhile. It’ll be cramped in my little apartment with all 3 of us, but we’ll make it work. Either that or kill one another. I’m never really sure just how that’s gonna work out.

    Keep taking care of yourself and Baby Mac!

  8. Jane,
    I will be enjoying a beautiful weekend at home. There should be sunshine all weekend. That makes me so happy. Kids are on spring break next week. They are so excited. I would like a spring break, too.

    Hope you have a great weekend.

  9. Hi Jane!

    I’m trying to stay in the chair! To finish a manuscript. It’s requested and I’m sooo hoping it’s The One. I’ve written only 2 new pages today. Ugh! Hearing about you lighting candles, makes me want to do the same in hopes it’ll get the fire and juices going again. But of course that small fire on the kitchen bar always makes me skiddish.

    Take care and stay busy. Ty will be back before you know it.


  10. My daughter came home from Florida yesterday… she had spent three months down there at horse shows with her horse. She worked as a groom and stable hand and our coach brought the horse up to speed so hopefully they will be jumping at national levels this summer. She left December 30 and it is the longest I have ever been separated from any of my kids. She is 20 and I have to get used to them having their own lives, but I’m NOT READY!!!

    This weekend I am quilting — it’s supposed to rain most of the next 3-5 days. I don’t mind because I am heartily sick of the snow and the rain will help take card of that. I will enjoy the company of my two youngest daughters, visit with my neigbour and quilting buddy and bake some fabulous chocolate chocolate chip cookies.

  11. It was a nice day at work . . . steady flow of work without being overly busy and stressful. And there was time for me to learn something new. The only drawback today was the women’s restroom went out of commission and had to walk all the way down to the main office to use the bathroom. Which also wasn’t so bad because it was a sunny 65 degrees here in northern Ohio today.

  12. I’m working during the day (like always), but the great thing is that I’m actually getting to write! So far 11k words this week. I’m so happy and I love how it feels when you writing regularly and are dialed in to the project. I’m loving where my characters are going and seeing so many possiblities. In other news, we’re expecting 12 to 16 inches of snow here in Denver on Saturday. So guess what my son and I are doing?? Staying home! I’ll write, he’ll play his Wii for awhile and then we’ll take breaks and play games (he loves chess and is becoming quite good). Then we’ll write/play Wii some more and then break to watch a movie. It’s all good!

  13. I’m lounging on the couch after a five hour nap. Just had a tooth implant, and am frankly enjoying the drugs. So, I’m checking all my favourite blogs and getting caught up.

    Jane, I rarely post, so I wanted to wish you all the best for Mac and I appreciated your sharing so many details.


  14. Jane,

    Have had a pretty terrible week so far. First my son had the croup and then my daughter got Strep and then my son came home vomitting and my grandfather passed on Tuesday. Spent the day at the funeral today and am so exhausted. My house is a mess and I just want to head to bed. Soon…I will head there soon.
    So glad you enjoyed your time with Ty. Every woman should feel protected and beautiful…especially when pregnant!!

  15. Today I went and spent the day with my sister and we went out to lunch and it was a very nice day.

    All last week my husband was laid off at his work and he just about drove me crazy laying around the house. He was sick part of the week with the same think I had the week before, but you would have thought he was about to die. They are always much worse then your are when they are sick!

  16. This morning at 7 a.m. I got off of work and came home to sleep. After 6 hrs. or so I got up and hit the blogs and e-mail.
    Dh is in and out of the house busy taking out staples from a floor that he removed the carpet in a housing complex.
    Tomorrow I go for a recall Mammography and an Ultrasound and am nervous being I even dreamt about losing a breast whilst I slept this morning.
    How nice to have had Ty home for a while; take care.

  17. Today was a great day. My nephew turned 7 today. He stayed home from school and we fixed his favorite meal for dinner.

  18. Hi Jane,

    Where to begin, our chickens have finally started laying eggs this past week. We got about a dozen so far. Today, I’ve done some house work and been on the computer the majority of the day blogging and getting caught up on emails. My better half has been working on my truck trying to get the motor in and running. That’s it for today.

    Have a great day.

  19. I’m taking advantage of a few days off before returning to work full time after being part time for 2 years! Taking long hike tomorrow morning with a friend- and then indulging in a facial in the afternoon…I feel so decadent…enjoy your weekend and writing!

  20. My daughter is coming home for the weekend – hurray! I’m doing a career fair at my son’s school during the day, and when I get home from that she’ll be here. We will have a fun, family weekend. They are the best! Debbie

  21. Beautiful weather today; took off the afternoon and had a very long lunch with a dear friend at a Thai restaurant – excellent food, enjoyable carefree company! Tomorrow I’m having dinner with old HS classmates to celebrate a birthday.

    Glad to hear you, Mac and the boys are doing well.

  22. Hi Jane, so just one more month? I bet you will be glad when your baby arrives later this month.

    Enjoyed your post today and hearing what you have been up to.

    So this weekend my hubby and I are heading to Ashevlle, NC. Our first wedding anniversary is tomorrow and we are both looking forward to getting away to the mountains and just relaxing.

    Take care and you have a good Friday and weekend!

  23. Good to hear from you, Jane; and good to hear you’re making steady progress on Shey’s story. Sounds like a visit from Ty was just the shot in the arm you needed; and perhaps some peeps (o:).

    This weekend kicks of spring break for my kids. We do have some fun days planned but I still have work to juggle and that’s OK. Let’s see: Sea World, an Angel’s baseball game, a couple of playdates and a trip to the local science museum.

    Last night was the mother/daughter tea at our school (for 5th grade girls). We had a good time despite the subject matter (body changes)–how funny we throw a party to celebrate this oh-so lovely right of passage! The girls took it in stride with our great speaker and even had questions for her.

    As I put her to bed last night, I could hardly swallow the fact that my baby girl could be starting “that” in the next year or so. They grow too fast; bittersweet I say.

    Have a lovely weekend, Jane. Stay warm and cozy inside. Keep cranking out Shey’s story, loving your big boys, and growing baby Mac!

    Take good care,
    Shannon in Tustin

  24. Hi Jane,

    Well we have a busy weekend in store for all of us. On top of that they are calling for rain all weekend, which is good because we really need it. There’s a BMX show I promised my son I’d take him to, work Saturday then a friends Shindig. And finally Palm Sunday at church and lunch afterward. So just a little busy this weekend. Take care and hope you have a great weekend also.


  25. Jane,
    So good to hear your writing is going so well. I wish so much I had that skill to be a writer but I don’t. Sorry Ty had to head back to Hawaii. I’m sure you’re wishing you could be there too. This weather is so awful that I just close my eyes and dream about the beautiful waikiki beach. Just lounging in a chair, taking a dip in the ocean as I get too warm, watching all the people. Ahhhh. Oh back to reality. If it’s going to be another rainy weekend, think I’ll just hunker in and watch movies and read some. Have a good weekend.

  26. My week has just been so-so.

    Okay, I lied. This week has stunk! Sales in my store have been pitiful, isn’t it funny how much work affects your personal life? If things aren’t going well at work I tend to find myself pretty down in the dumps! Ahh, well! I’m staying positive and know we will have a fabulous weekend and make up all that ground we have lost in the past few days!

    I’m glad the writing is steady for you! I cannot wait to read another JP book! 🙂

    Hope the weather looks up in the Northwest! I know many of us are anxiously awaiting some of that summer weather!!

  27. Wow, Mac will be here before you know it! Exciting times.
    This weekend we are having an anniversary dinner for my brother and his wife, who have been married for 35 years. We decided to do a Hawaiian feast. So I’ve been enjoying the planning of it all… now the hard work starts… the actual cooking. But it will be a fun weekend.

  28. Ah, my friend, I wish I could tell you I have an interesting weekend planned. Instead, I’m pushing through the last day of school before break, working Saturday a.m., and participating in the MS Walk on Sunday morning. Beyond that? Relaxing with my guy.
    Hugs to you and Baby Mac. May’s a good month 🙂

  29. Wow, that is exciting that baby Mac will be here so soon!

    Not much exciting news here. I am working on Sat. and relaxing on Sun! 🙂 I want so badly to take my girls to the Zoo, but the weather has been so cold and rainy here in Portland also. You would think I would be use to it by now, since I’ve lived here my whole life. I’m sadened my vegetable garden I planted last weekend has already been destroyed by numerous rain and hail storms. What was I thinking planting it in March? Oh well.

  30. Hi Jane,

    I just returned home from visiting my two granddaughters in Katy, TX. What joy they bring to my heart. Ages 3 and 5 they are full of energy. The older one loves movement and taking ballet classes while the younger sings everywhere she goes. They are such happy children.

    May your child be blessed with happiness.


  31. Ooh, it’s getting close. I wish Ty could have stayed with you. But he will be back in time.

    I wish I had exciting plans for the weekend. My daughter and I might hit the library, we have a netflix for the family.

  32. love the photo(s) of you and ty on facebook!

    typically we take the weekend as it comes- would love to get the house finished with all the painting and unpacking. its been over a month since we moved in! :O)

  33. Wednesday morning I started my day saying “only 2 more days til the weekend” then stopped short when I realized that we (my 2 girls and I) need to be at their cheer gym at 6:30 AM Saturday morning as they have a competition in Toms River NJ that day.
    It’s been a week filled with practices sandwiched between all our other regular activities – work for me, Hebrew school, piano lessons and a NYSSMA performance for my 8 year old, the mommy taxi service – all topped off by the fact that my 5 year old had surgery on both his feet last Thursday and has both feet casted (one green, one blue I might add), is walking like it never happened and has to be reminded not to run – but those darn casts have added about 10 pounds to his weight and getting in & out of the car is just not fun.
    So good luck to my girls tomorrow – go NY Cheer! – and to me for surviving the day, and can I say I am so looking forward to Sunday?!

  34. Hi Jane… not doing much this weekend but working, and being grateful I still have a job, since we all took mandatory time cuts to keep any of us from a layoff. I am losing about $200 a month. Ow. Not sure how that’s going to go, but it’s better than losing it all. So yes, I could sure use a good relaxing bubble bath & some goodies, because nothing is really “good” right now.

  35. Looking forward to a nice, quiet evening with hubby. Making his favorite–fajitas and we hope to rent the Harlan Coben movie “Tell No One.” Maybe we’ll have friends over tomorrow. The usual stuff, but it’s all good!

  36. Morning Jane, glad you had a great visit with your Ty, it’s nice to be pampered and taken care of! The time apart will go fast.
    This weekend I plan on resting, and reading and more resting and reading! Having a flare up of my “medical condition” 🙁 after a long work week.
    Getting ready for my son’s “30th” birthday, how did it go so fast???? Seems like I was just 30 (19 yrs ago!,I have been remembering back from when he was born, and little carrying his stack of books to read next to me! Time goes fast!
    Hoping to have alittle cool weather here, so I can have a nice fire and some candles going, not that I don’t enjoy our 80 degree sunshine!
    Take care and “Happy Writing”!

  37. Hi Jane. My family is sad this week. My aunt died and we have to go to visitation and the funeral this weekend.

  38. TGIF Jane 🙂

    We had lots of bad weather yesterday evening here in North AL. My fiance came to drive me home from work last nite and we wound up driving into the outskirts of a tornado on the interstate! It was scary for a few minutes.

    One of my friends is hosting a gold buying party at her house this evening, so I am looking forward to getting off of work and going to that.

    Looking forward to some time off of work on Sunday too.

    Hope everyone has a fun weekend!

  39. That is so great to be pampered and to hear about your writing progress. You are to be admired and spoiled. I hope to enjoy this warmer and sunny weather which I appreciate.

  40. Good to hear you are getting so close to the arrival of your precious baby! How exciting! I remember just how slow the last 2 months seemed to go, it was rough!

    This weekend I will be visiting my Grandkids and taking them to see the Easter Bunny! We’ll see if we can get them close or if they’ll be freaked out! 🙂 Then on Sunday I am going to enjoy being pampered and indulge in a massage! My work is extremely physical and I am so achy right now. Other than that, just cleaning house and running errands.
    Have a good weekend Jane! I’m looking forward to your new book!

  41. Hi Jane! I’m so excited for you and Surfer Ty! I miss my kids being little ones! Two out of the three of mine are taller than me and way too big for me to have cuddle on my lap! ;-(

    This was our spring break week and everyone has been sick. Now, it’s my turn and I’m feeling kind of icky! There’s a girls’ nite scheduled for tonight but I’m wondering if I will make it.

    My husband’s been remodeling on our main bathroom and hopefully it will be done this weekend! I’m keeping my fingers crossed!

  42. Hi Jane,
    I just finished reading your book Flirting with Forty (the one I picked up from you last weekend at the Seattle Women’s Show!) at about 2 am this morning and I can not believe how it just spoke to me. Your characters thoughts about the fears of being a single mom and about losing yourself as a person rang soo true to me. AND I am such a big overthinker too!! The downside is that I am still stuck in my marriage, an I don’t have a degree or job to fall on if I left.

    But on the good side, I’ve had a GREAT week. I finally feel OK with myself, and I feel that no matter what happens, I will be OK. I also am working on enjoying being in the MOMENT, enjoying both the bad an the good, instead of avoiding both feelings altogether.

    Ironically my husband and I are going out tonite to celebrate 13 years ago when he asked me out on our first date. it is both sad and happy for me, but I am going to enjoy tonite, even tho it feels bitter sweet to me.

  43. Hi Jane!

    This whole communicating-with-celebrities thing is new to me, and a little surreal, but I’m so excited to participate! 🙂

    We spent last weekend celebrating two birthdays, and I still have one more before Easter, plus three parties to deal with. This time of year makes my head hurt.

    To top it all off, I have a nasty cold, so what I want to do is curl up in my pajamas and sleep the sick away. What I will be doing, however, is keeping warm indoors, sending out party invitations, tracking RSVPs, sewing Easter dresses and watching General Conference on television, as opposed to going to church on Sunday.

    All in my pajamas, naturally. 🙂

    Good luck with your writing! And your pregnancy! (Congratulations!)

  44. So love your Mommy blogs. As much as I have loved your modern lit books, you are my favorite of your heroines. 🙂

  45. Hi Jane,

    So happy to hear you have been writing. Although July seems a long way off, it really isn’t and I am looking so forward to your next book.

    As for my weekend plans…I am heading out the door momentarily to take my kids to the elementary school talent show. I do think I enjoy this as much as they do! Later tonight or most likely tomorrow, it’s going to be the DVD release of ‘Austrailia’. My husband’s been working too hard this week and is looking for the relaxing distraction of some down time. Rains expected in the next day or two so it’s sounding like a perfect weekend to rest and relax.

    Hope you and your 4 boys are doing well.

    Happy Spring!


  46. Hi Jane,
    I’ve just had one of those days when nothing works out right. I guess I’ll just look forward to my weekend and hope some of the two and a half feet of snow melts!

  47. I am so excited because my niece and her family are visiting for spring break and we haven’t seen them since last year! She has 3 “big boys” and a daughter 5 and a son 3 from her husband now, who is from India that she had late, like your Mac. They are a wonderful “blended” family and it will be super to see them again. We will have about 18 over on Sunday for their visit. I don’t have grandchildren so they are very dear to me. Cleaning and cooking tomorrow and lots of fun on Sunday! Jane, the sun came out this afternoon so things are looking up!

  48. We’ve got cold and rainy New England weather tonite. Settling in with pizza and a movie and seeing what tomorrow brings!

  49. Well yesterday while you were writing I was sitting in the Endodontist chair having a root canal performed. We (me and hubby) better time getting to the endodontist so I called ahead and found out that there had been an earlier cancelation due to the massive amout of rain and storms we have been having. So I went in an hour and half early. I wound up having the entire root canal in one sitting and sitting I did. From start to finish about 3 hours. they said since I was doing so welll they decided to due the entire root canal in one visit instead of two.

    Today I have spent my afternoon getting insurance I also went to the tag office to change the title over on a used Honda CRV we bought my 18 year old daughter to drive to college.

    Grocery shopping,stopping by the pet food store for dog food and trying to find a way home because the main road to my house is out due to flooding of the river a couple of miles from my house finished up my day for me.

    I am tired and my mouth is very sore the root canal has finally caught up with me.

    I can’t wait to hear more about the arrival of the baby and see some pictures of him when he is born.

  50. Jane,
    Ty has got it right…and I can’t imagine how much he misses “the hot mama” and his little miracle preparing to emerge!
    And, Mac, is he turned “right” side…down?

  51. I love reading your blog 🙂

    I helped out at my childrens’ school today. They had a Health Fair which was a lot of fun. They had a healthy BQ and a lot of fun activities with prizes for everyone.

    No plans this weekend but I have all next week off of work (yeah), so I can spend sping break with my kids 🙂

  52. Hi, Jane! I’m just going to try and relax this weekend. Maybe I can dig into my TBR pile and get some reading done! Enjoy your weekend!

  53. Good morning everyone!

    I’m back to announce the winner of the contest prize, and #21 Marelou, you’re that winner!

    Please send me a private email ASAP, Marelou, with your mail address and I’ll get the prize out to you first thing Monday morning.

    Thank you everyone for talking and sharing! I read every comment as it came in and you all did a great job keeping me company at my desk.


  54. I just love reading all about your days, Jane – you are so filled with fun and positivity. You may not feel it at times, but I am sure you are a very motivated girl who never gives up 🙂
    Last weekend was spent scrapbooking with 12 other girls. I finished an album which was 5 pictures taken for every day in December which is my most fave month of all. I just have the journalling to do now, so that is what I will be working on at some time today. I am also going to take in the movie The Women with Meg Ryan today with a girlfriend, so looking forward to that too.
    Take care, Jane, and make sure you get up from your desk and take little walks, so you don’t get stiff from not moving xox

  55. You have such an incredible life. And you are so strong. Strong and also soft hearted. Thanks for sharing! Love reading your blog!

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