Saturday, December 26, 2009

Bootcamp with Jess - The End...or is it?

My six-week-self-inflicted-torture-at-a-bargain-price BootcampwithJess has ended.

What, you may ask, are the end results?

Let me share—

1. Tonnage lost--.0045 (a.k.a. 9 lbs)

2. Millimeters lost – 152.4 (6 inches)

3. Times I wet my pants—0 (actually, it Depends)

4. # of pushups for infractions—200 (plus or minus 120)

5. # of actual instructors impaled, blown up, shot, run over, beaten, or disposed of by me during the 6-week period—0

6. # of incidents mentioned in #5 imagined by me during the 6-week period (I plead the 5th, on the grounds it definitely would incriminate me)

7. Number of Diet Cokes I consumed in the first 3 weeks—0

8. Number of Diet Cokes I consumed in the last 3 weeks—more than 10, less than 100

9. Number of man-pushups I can do without stopping—40

10. Insanity factor (on a scale of 1 to 10) of those who sign up for an initial 6-week journey to Helk-and-back and pay for the privilege—9.781564298

Insanity factor (on a scale of 1 to 10) of those who re-sign up for it, knowing what they are getting into—11.29837492

All—or most—kidding aside: It was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done.

I am officially insane. I inked up for the next six weeks. I loved it. And hated it. I must have more…

Here’s to my friend, Amy Jo, who has bravely consented to join with me during the next journey to HELK—you can do it!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Dear Diary...

Dear Diary,

This week at bootcampwithjess has been a big blur. I still have a pulse and am not in traction so that is good.

Today I went to the 6 a.m. session. Dear Diary—you know I am allergic to early mornings, but I missed the Tuesday workout to drive to Elk Snout and needed to make it up.

I met a new friend. Her name is Endorphin. She only stopped by for a few minutes, but she is mighty persuasive. She told me I should sign up for the next session and start going at 6 a.m. every day.

My friend Diet Coke is kind of ticked off at me for considering it.

There is a raging battle ensuing—I just know it.

Pre-battle scene:

Endorphin thinks I can do better

Diet Coke thinks I am fine the way I am

I’m not sure who’s right. Maybe my older sister is on target, and I am STUCK ON STUPID!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Back at BootcampwithJess

I’m baaack!

After being gone to not-so-sunny California for a week, I re-entered the world of bootcampwithjess.

There is a new exercise I did tonight. You hold a 20-lb weight ball above your head, and with all the force you can muster, you slam it into the mat on the floor and see how high it bounces. 20 times.

Instructor R incited the rage within when he yelled, “Take out your frustrations. Throw it down hard, Ferran!”

I used my imagination. I imagined that 20-lb ball was something that really frustrated me. Here are three things that I imagined that ball to be…and boy, did my energy unleash!

Oh yeah! My new favorite exercise.

A few highlights from my trip:

1) On the rental shuttle I noticed that my socks were brown and my pants and shoes were black. It was dark when I got dressed. Changed my socks in the parking lot.

2) I got lost trying to drive out of the rental car parking lot. I went round and round. When I realized the dude in the turban watching me was the attendant at the exit, I finally found my way out. He said, “I saw you go by. I knew you’d be back.” At least my socks matched.

3) Needed my security blanket having to stretch so far out of my comfort zone—paid $3 for a 20 oz bottle of Diet Coke and loved every burning ounce of it.

4) Found out quickly where they put the auditors—in an abandoned outbuilding with no heat and no bathroom. Good thing I only drank one Diet Coke.

5) My friendly host CFO acted as my driver for an evening and following morning. Another auditor scare tactic—Mario Andretti meets Lady GaGa. She raced down the freeway applying her makeup. Not. Kidding. Here is the actual photo from the scene. (You can’t see the car, because she is driving THAT fast!)

6) I forgave “Mario GaGa” because: a) I didn’t actually die, and b) She found my iPod Shuffle that I lost and is sending it back to me.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Halfway Through...

Halfway through – I’m kinda, sorta, maybe, perhaps liking it a wee bit. It’s harder for me to blog about something I like…

A couple of notes on numbers


Taken three times throughout the six-week process. One of my measurements was quite shocking—yet not.

My calf measured 15 inches. That’s not a calf, that’s a COW!

This could explain why boots don’t fit me well. I pulled on my black leather suede boots—suede stretches a little—and could not zip them all the way. There wasn’t enough hide to hide the expanse. One of my calves is almost as big as Scarlett O’Hara’s waist.

What I need are COWboots—not cowboy boots. Boots for women who have calves that qualify for first prize in the state fair and could be sold by the pound. Let me know if you see any.


Tonnage lost so far: .0025

That’s a hard number to wrap your mind around, here is a visual:

5 lbs lost. It doesn’t sound like a lot until you visualize packing this butter around. (Oh man, I just visualized it thoroughly mixed into cookie dough with chocolate chips, and I had to wrestle myself to pry that butter from my grasping fingers as they also groped for sugar and flour—It was hard, I noticed I’m stronger than I used to be)

I did get a prize tonight!

In case you can’t read it, it says “Boot Camp With Jess Survivor.” I was pretty excited as they only give them to people who actually survive HADES week. At least, I think they only give them to the survivors. Nobody has admitted where the bodies are actually buried…

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Day 14 - Happy Thanksgiving

This morning I dragged my carcass out of bed, put the turkey in the roaster oven, and hauled myself over to BootcampwithJess.

On. Thanksgiving.

I was quite excited to see Instructor C would be teaching the class. She is a lovely blonde woman—almost angelic looking. Here is her picture:

She taught a true circuit class, which was quite refreshing—at first.

Then I caught a glimpse of her true personality—the woman is a machine. I now believe the “C” in Instructor C stands for “Cyborg”

Here is the glimpse I caught of her true character:

I, too, was shocked!

However, it was a great workout—I actually felt the ENDORPHIN rush. I’m glad I went.

It seems that Cyborgs have a purpose, other than terminating people.


Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Day 13 - HELP is always lurking...

Day 13 – Words cannot adequately describe the workout.

If exercise balls are cut in half, they should deflate like normal balls do.

I got a better look at this one tonight—several times. I have named it.

The HELP Ball - Help Exterminate Living Persons
Sounds innocent, HELPful even…Just what they want you to think.

Bicep curls are tough. Bicep curls on the HELP ball are tougher. I am afraid of what’s next.

Squats burn. Squats on the HELP ball make you wobble, spasm, flail, as your Instructor barks, “Lower Ferran!” “Don’t lean forward Ferran!” “Stick your [butt] out Ferran!” Finally, he steps away, shakes his head, and says, “I don’t know what to tell you Ferran.”

How about – “That looks really hard on your spasming lower back, Ferran, as I just made you do 20 reverse sit-up thingies. Sit over there and enjoy a nice, cold Diet Coke.” Near-death experiences can make you think crazy thoughts, okay?

I had to say, “Instructor R, I need to stop.” Humiliating, but necessary and life-preserving.

Next circuit though, I did much—or a little—better.

Sometimes commanding you to do more helps you push through it. Tonight, it was the shaking of the head, which I interpreted as, “You are beyond any help I can give you.” To which I thought, “Oh no you di’int say that to ME. I’ll prove I can do it.” And I did. Right after I admitted I needed to stop.

Two good lessons. Me and the HELP ball—I’m afraid our relationship will never be one of friendship.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Day 12 BootcampwithJess - A tribute to Dr. Seuss

Butts & Guts - Those were the targets of tonight’s torture.

I will illustrate the Exercise That Must Not Be Named—

To suitably describe it, I have ripped off the cadence from the immortal Dr. Seuss’s Cat In The Hat:

“Look at me, look at me, look at me now!
Insanity’s easy, you just have to know how
I can lift up these weights as I stand on the ball,
I might break a hip if I happen to fall.
My jelly thighs shake as I rock back and forth
My butt has gone South and my brain has gone North
That’s what Ferran said, as she fell on her head
Certain that this time, she would wake up dead.”

R.I.P. – tomorrow comes mighty early

Monday, November 23, 2009

Day Eleven - (un)Justly Accused

My sister-in-law (who is an exercise freak—you know you are, M) has more than broadly hinted that I may actually like this punishment known as BootcampwithJess. It borderlines on accusation even.

I checked a couple of facts:

FACT: I asked my instructor to give me a list of exercises I can work on while I am out of town next week—in a hotel without a workout room.

FACT: I actually checked the hotel amenities to see if they had a workout room.

FACT: I pushed myself on Friday to do pushups after my 55-minute elliptical workout.

FACT: Tonight I saw a signup sheet for a THANKSGIVING DAY workout—and I hurried and signed up because there was only one spot left.

FACT: Something is seriously wrong with me.

I need my head examined. A copy of the brain scan:

This clearly indicates that the lack of Diet Coke over the last two weeks has resulted in a severe shortage of chemicals to my brain and I am suffering from serious mental incapacity. Yes, you guessed it:


Intervention is needed! Anyone…anyone? Hurry, before it’s too late!

On the other hand, I have lost 3 lbs. since I started…

Friday, November 20, 2009

Day Ten - AWOL

Day 10 = AWOL (absent with out leave)

To be more exact: Day 10 = AWL (absent with leave)

I asked Instructor R last night if I could bypass the beating in the park at 0600 this morning, due to a client meeting I had this morning that I needed time to prep for.

He made me do 10 pushups.

Just kidding. He actually exhibited humanoid characteristics and said it was no problem—just make sure I did 45-60 minutes of cardio on my own.

“Don’t cheat yourself, Ferran. Push yourself hard,” were his parting words.

I don’t cheat. I fabricate sometimes, for literary or humorous purposes, but I don’t cheat.

The day started to wane and I realized I hadn’t worked out yet. At 8:45, my husband started watching a show that showed fat, hair, and blood being cleaned from dead deer hides to make Fine Corinthian Leather. Nauseated, I realized it was time to hop on my elliptical cross-trainer.

55 minutes and 555 calories later--although sweatier than a pig in a sauna, I didn’t feel half bad. I took a self-portrait so I could have evidence of the sweat.

(Sure makes my usual drawings look better, doesn't it?)

I looked entirely too happy, so I made myself do 10 pushups.

Ahhh, pain—that’s more like it.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Day Nine - BootcampwithJess

I was so exhausted and drained after work today that I seriously wondered if I could make it through tonight’s bootcampwithjess session.

I called my daughter for encouragement and told her:

1) I’m exhausted and have no energy

2) My chest is congested

3) I have consumed four quarts of water and only one pint has passed through (Where is it going—my brain?)

4) I am suffering constant "occasional bouts of irregularity" (i.e. constipation. I know—TMI. I just want you to know that I was feeling pretty bad—physically)

5) My feet are swollen, threatening to burst forth from my cute little Payless flats with the criss-cross strap

My daughter said:

“Go and workout anyway. Maybe you will pass out and they’ll call the paramedics and you’ll wake up in the hospital.”

…or maybe I could just wake up dead…

I went.

I was the only trainee tonight. Yep. The only victim. Maybe the others were already in the hospital.

The instructor asked me if I was okay working out alone. Silly me, I thought maybe he was going to leave me to direct my own workout, and I was already planning on rolling out a mat and taking a nap. Lulled by my own water-logged thoughts, I said yes.

Started out the warm up on the treadmill, stretched, back on the treadmill again at a higher speed, and something amazing happened. (Sit down for this one, Em.) I actually started to feel BETTER once I started working out. What was happening to me?

It lasted through the first 15 minutes.

As the recipient of Instructor R’s full attention, he gave me twice the workout at the same price. We—meaning me—worked on legs and abs.

I knew I had legs. I use them all the time. But I had only read about abdominal muscles, never believing that I might possess some of them myself. The pain now tells me they are there, somewhere beneath the soft muffin top I fondly refer to as my “keg” (as opposed to a six-pack).

The most tortuous exercise of all—I’ll call it “Just Kill Me Now”—was something I thought only Chuck Norris could do. Instructions:

1) Stand on a step

2) Insert arms (all the way to your armpits) through two black slings hanging by carribeaners from a high pole

3) Bend elbows, grasp carribeaners with hands

4) Remove feet from step

5) Pull legs (or knees) up to your waist level whilst dangling like Jabba the Hut

6) Repeat 20 times

If I could have laughed I would have. Here is the diagram for your viewing pleasure:

If the paramedics don't come soon, maybe the coroner will.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Day Eight - BootcampwithJess

This hurts me to say it, but I almost liked BootcampwithJess tonight. Almost.

1) No infractionary push-ups (yeah, I know it’s not a real word, but it is very descriptive).

2) I remembered my shirt and all other clothing bits and tents.

3) The instructor took my measurements today (needed the big measuring tape) but that cut about five minutes off my treadmill time which provided me with much-needed oxygen.

4) The instructor asked me if I was staying away from the 4 forbidden foods…

a. Pasta
b. Bread
c. Dairy
d. Soda

…and I could answer YES! (except for 1.75 of Grandma Litster’s homemade rolls on Sunday—I’m not a machine). No pushups for my confession, rather a “Good job, Ferran. Keep it up and the pounds will start dropping.”

A compliment! Combined with the other positive points enumerated above, it was almost good. Almost.

A picture of me tonight:

I know—I’m looking livelier, although my nose still seems to be missing…

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Day Seven Bootcampwith Jess

I had to work at a client’s today and was very uptight about making it to HELK (a.k.a bootcampwithjess) on time. It would normally take 30 minutes to drive there, but I allowed 45 minutes because…

For every minute you’re late, you do 10 pushups. Big. Surprise.

Guess what?

If you guessed late—you were wrong. I got there at 4:55, ran inside to the bathroom to put on my workout clothes at the speed of light—or at least within 3 minutes.

Pants - present
Sports bra – present
Sport shorts – present
Socks – present
Shoes – present
Shirt – absent. Conspicuously absent.

Dilemma: Do I workout in my business/work blouse that is sort of silky blue?

Or Do I workout in just my sports bra?

I had to decide fast. I checked to mirror to see just how bad I looked with only the sports bra as my top. Eeeeeeeewwwww! Bleeccchhhh! Jes’ plain nasty!


I put my business top back on. As I tried to not stand out in my non-workout clothes, I spied a couple of t-shirts on display. I asked Instructor Richins (who is NOT an Inspector) if they would sell me one. Ten bucks later, I am properly clothed and standing at attention at 5:00 sharp.

It’s a spiffy camo shirt that says “I survived boot camp w/Jess. P.T. with a purpose!”

Now several things about that shirt are debatable, such as the “I survived” part.

The good thing is – nobody sicked up at having to look at the doughy white midsection of a middle-aged HAGgish woman.

I like the shirt.

I like the fact that I did ZERO pushups for infractions.

I don’t like the actual torture by workout thing—it hurts

But I sure saved money…

Monday, November 16, 2009

Day Six - BootcampwithJess

This is for my daughter’s 13-year old friend who told her “Your mom SWEARS on her blog!” (and Brielle, you know who you are  )

“Dam” is not a swear word

“Dumb bass” is not a swear word

“Hell” is a place (where I’ve been for six days now!) and even if you consider it a swear word, I used it while quoting someone else who may have used it as a swear word, so therefore it does not count as a swear word.

“Rationalization” is what I just did in the preceding paragraph – but that’s how I roll!

Day 6 – my arms are like cooked noodles (BIG noodles; maybe dumplings)—limp and white.

We worked out arms tonight and now I am typing with my toes. There will be no drawings to illustrate the fun tonight (I’m not that good with my toes).

I did not have the 30-pound vest!

I did have to do 10 pushups for “eyeballing” the instructor.

I had to do that Dead Cockroach thing again. It was HELK! (that word was for the two Bri’s—Brielle & Brianna)

I survived the ordeal, then walked outside, slipped and fell on the ice and caused a small tremor to rock the Salt Lake Valley.

No Diet Coke for 8 days (Diet Coke is not a swear word either, Brielle)

The cover of my latest book

I just got the proof for the cover of my latest book, Life's Alphabet Soup: When your children make you eat your words

I like it a lot! Here is your sneak preview:

It's scheduled for release in February 2010 which will put it in stores right around March/April--Just in time for Mother's Day gifting! Start your list now!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Day Five - BootcampwithJess

Today was Cinco de Hades presented by the letter S


I had to get up at the butt-crack of dawn which, by itself, was enough to ruin my day.

We met at a park, and for once I was thankful for the 30-pound vest. For about a minute. As long as it took us to stop marching and start “shuffling”—another word for jogging. While we jogged, we sang/chanted in cadence (in my case I gasped in cadence). It became evident that I was slowing down my column and was told to drop back—so I did.

Of course when they say “drop back” they mean “stagger and gasp at the back of the column while an instructor pokes your back and tells you to keep running.” Two problems with that:

1) If I could keep running, I wouldn’t have dropped back in the first place

2) He didn’t have a cattle prod—which may have helped

That leap of faith thing I mentioned yesterday? Well, we did something like it today, only modified.

1) We leaped, both feet at the same time

2) We dropped to the ground

3) We did a pushup

4) We stood up and did it again

5) Uphill

Diagram for those of you who like visual aids:

(note: we did not fall off actual cliffs—it is a representation of the dashing of our hopes as we reached the pinnacle and heard the order to do it again)

Stadium steps – or stair laps as you might want to call them. As I passed one instructor, I managed to choke out “I think I’m going to die.” She told me to raise my arms above my head (a sign of surrender, perhaps?)

I brought up the rear of most events, but I guess it wasn’t really a race—I mean there were no prizes or anything. Well I did get one prize. As the laggard of the “run down the hill and then climb up it on your hands and feet” drill, I noticed that those lucky ones who raced to finish first got to drop into the—you guessed it—Dead Cockroach position until everyone finished.

I’m not saying I was slow on purpose, but there was a little satisfaction in seeing the row of Dead Cockroaches and I only had to join them for about five seconds.

One last diagram:

Somehow I survived. And I did no pushups for infractions.

I whined. I hurt. I cried. I went without Diet Coke. I feel pretty good, in spite of the pain.

I took a self-portrait on the way home, just to make sure I was still fogging a mirror:

Don't be alarmed--the brown stuff on my face is camoflauge paint courtesy of Instructor Thomas. It is not the dreaded "Diet Coke Withdrawals that manifests as a Poo-like substance on your face"


Thursday, November 12, 2009

Day Four - BootcampwithJess

Today we celebrate the letter E – The fourth letter in HADES week.

END—will it ever END?

This day was complicated by the storm front moving in and aggravating my fibromyalgia pain—My life is aggravated by my adult son moving home and continually knocking on my door as I’m trying to get some much needed sleep.

What tortures awaited me today?

The pattern has warped – My instructor did NOT perform 30 pushups for me.

I had to do 30 pushups. Three infractions – called him “Inspector” twice instead of “Instructor” and forgot to say his name entirely after speaking to him once.

If I had called him what I was thinking of calling him, I probably would have had to do 300 pushups.

New torture: Leap of Faith

A diagram:

Kind of like leap frog, hence the green massive thighs. I had to do this across the room and back. Both feet off the floor at the same time. Note the 30 lb vest. My instructor has a blue cast because his arm is broken. He said it was from a car accident (mwahhhhhh, let him THINK it was an accident). The plague of flies issuing forth from his mouth is a figment of my imagination.

Do not think that I got out of the Dead Cockroach torment tonight. NO! It was worse than ever. How? I was forced to lie in that position, twitching with searing pain, while Lady GaGa blared loudly from the stereo. I. Am. Not. A. Fan.

The longest 5 minutes of my life!

Happy to say, I am still Diet Coke free. I will prevail, if the fires of Hades don’t consume my frail, flabby body first.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Day Three - BootcampwithJess

Today was brought to us by the letter D (third letter of HADES)

As in – DAM (what the one fish said to the other when they swam into the wall)
            DUMB BASS (what the dam said about the fish who ran into it)

Not really relevant, but I felt like swearing and pseudo-swearing is as close as I could get.

We worked on legs and shoulders tonight. For as big as my thighs are, you would think there were some massive quadriceps hiding in there. Apparently not, because they don’t work properly.

I was instructed to put one foot on the bench, hold the weight ball, and lift the foot remaining on the floor up to the weight ball to tap my knee on the weight ball. And REPEAT 20 TIMES. A diagram of the situation:

You don’t see the weight ball because I had no strength left and could not even do ONE rep. The instructor took the weight ball from me and told me to do 20 reps without it. When he saw my struggle to get my flaccid limb off the ground, a shred of mercy must have escaped his hardened soul – he reduced it to 15. I made it—barely.

Do you recall the Dead Cockroach from yesterday???

I do. Because I had to do it again for the third night in a row, and tonight I discovered that there are two very distinct nerve control centers in my body. The upper and the lower. From the waist up, I was a normal Dead Cockroach—not moving. From the waist down, I was twitching like my SIL given a bad nerve block—not at all normal for a Dead Cockroach. I could not control it. Another diagram:

 So if you see me laying in a gutter somewhere, twitching, these are your directions:

1) If I am face up, it means I’m stuck in the Dead Cockroach position and can’t get up. Please be a Good Samaritan and help me out.

2) If I am face down, it means I still haven’t had a Diet Coke, and you should roll me over and provide me with a 20 oz bottle immediately. Pour it down my throat if I seem unresponsive.

P.S. On a brighter note, I only had to do 10 pushups tonight. I'm seeing a pattern Monday 90; Tuesday 50; Wednesday 10. Tomorrow, I expect my instructor will do 30 push ups for me!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Day Two - BootcampwithJess

Today was “A” day (2nd day of HADES week)


Yes, it is confirmed. I went back voluntarily—muscles screaming at me all the way.

I would like to introduce you to my least favorite exercise. It is my least favorite because of 1) Its name – Dead Cockroach and 2) The deceptive way it feels like a relief for the first 30 seconds and then you wish you were a dead cockroach as the next few minutes drag on and your legs curl up involuntarily and a scream threatens to rip from your throat.

Here is an actual picture of me doing the Dead Cockroach exercise (note how my poor legs are curling, involuntarily):

(Actually, I look quite thin in this picture, so I think BootcampwithJess is already working!)
Push ups today for breaking the rules:     50

Number of injured limbs my instructor has:    1

Number of injured limbs I wish he had:     4

Number of times I jumped to touch the top of the door jamb while wearing a 30-lb vest:   35

How heavy a 30-lb vest feels after jumping 35 times while wearing it:      100 lbs.

Diet Cokes I’ve consumed:     0

Number of firearms I purchased in the past 24 hours (curse that waiting period!):     0

Monday, November 9, 2009

Day One - BootcampwithJess

I am still alive!

That’s the good news.

I loved my first night of bootcampwithjess!

That’s the lie.

They call this “Hell Week” for a reason. I’m going to refer to it as “Hades Week” because Hades has five letters—one for each day of the week. Let’s start with “H”

As in, Why in the “H” did I sign up for this?

After turning in the diary of my past three days’ intake—food and liquid—the conversation went something like this (it was quite one-sided):

Instructor (reading list): Cheese. Ten pushups.

Although surprised that cheese was bad, I dropped and gave him ten (real pushups). Got back on my feet.

Instructor: 2 Diet Cokes. Twenty pushups.

I dropped and gave him twenty. Wobbled getting back on my feet.

Instructor: Chips. Ten pushups.

They were veggie chips! 33% less fat than regular potato chips. I dropped and gave him five real pushups then asked if I could finish with knee pushups. He said yes. Staggered to my feet.

Instructor: 2 more Diet Cokes. Twenty more. Count them.

I assumed the position (knee pushups), arms rebelled & threatened to collapse. Ignored my arms, gave twenty more. Crawled to my feet. Failed to respond correctly.

Instructor: Wrong response. Ten more.

I went back on my knees. Gave silent thanks for the knee pads. Willed the arms to stop shaking. Did ten more pushups. Almost fell over when I stood up.

Instructor: Ice cream. Ten more.

Back down, cursed Ben & Jerry’s and their mothers. Arms buckled. Caught myself. Did ten more pushups. Somehow made it to my feet. Room tilted.

Instructor: Pizza. Ten more.

Isn’t pizza healthy? It has the four basic food groups. Fall down to my knees, jelly arms somehow make it through ten more. I pray he doesn’t count each slice of pizza.

My prayers were answered. He tells me to stand at attention. I manage to sway at attention.

Instructor: 70% of this program is proper nutrition. For the next six weeks you will not drink soda…

It registers in my brain--NO DIET COKE!

Instructor: No bread.


Instructor: No dairy.


Instructor: No pasta.


I know you are probably thinking—this woman is addicted to Diet Coke. That is not true, I’ve quit drinking it hundreds of times.

Okay, I am addicted to it. Not just the caffeine—it’s the burn, baby.

But which is worse—90 pushups or no Diet Coke? Only an addict would ask that question.

I only hope that the Coca-Cola Company does not go out of business, having just lost my patronage for at least six weeks.

Thus we have the first fifteen minutes of my first night of bootcampwithjess.

I’ll be back tomorrow.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

I will survive!

If I can last through three hours of church (Primary childrens' program)--trying to herd five rowdy eight-year old boys who hate to sing, plus two Lois Lanes and the world's most polite eight-year old who gets headaches from all the noise--I can survive BootcampwithJess.

Bring. It. On.

(these may be my final words--just saying)

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Bootcamp with Jess - the Prequel

FACT: I have fibromyalgia.

FACT: I don’t get an endorphin rush from working out.

FACT: The only time I run is when there is free Diet Coke to be had, or I’m taking a cleanse.

FACT: If you piled my subcutaneous fat into a big blob, you would have—me!

FACT: I love a good bargain.

FACT: My judgment has become increasingly iffy as I age.

RESULT: At a chamber of commerce dinner last Thursday I got caught up in the enthusiasm of the silent auction and became the proud owner of 6-weeks of BootcampwithJess at a substantial savings to yours truly—PT Ferran (PT stands for Physical Trainee).

This is how it begins, directly from their website:

“It all starts with your first week of bootcamp called "Hell Week". During this week, you will wear a 30 pound vest (representing the extra fat many overweight individuals are carrying around with them).”

FACT: I already have a more than fair representation of “the extra fat many overweight individuals are carrying around with them.” So can’t I be exempt from the 30-lb vest? (I know, the answer is “ten pushups” which is the punishment for any infraction of the rules, of which there are many.)

While initially thrilled with my bargain purchase, the elation changed to alarm when my EFSIL (exercise freak sister-in-law) and AENN (another exercise nut neighbor) both said, “You’ll hate it. It will be the hardest thing you’ve ever done.”

My oldest daughter added to my fear when she said, “Mom, I’ll pray for you.”

One of the required items you must have is kneepads. I asked my sister-in-law “Why would I need kneepads?” She had no idea. My daughter suggested, “Because you’ll be on your knees begging for mercy so much.”

I’ll find out on Monday, from 5-6 pm what the knee pads are for. Stay tuned. If I live through “Hell Week” you can enjoy the journey vicariously. If I die, you’ll know the cause of death.

Props to me for either: 1) Starting a path down the road to fitness; or 2) Signing my own death warrant at a bargain price.

To be continued Monday night…if my fingers and arms still work.

Friday, October 23, 2009

5 People I Would Love to be Trapped in an Elevator With--NOT!

My SIL played a game on her blog “5 People I would love to be trapped in an elevator with. You can read her list here:

She invited all to play the game. Her husband's choice is especially clever. I just had to comment:

I don't play that game. I play the game "Who would you NOT like to be stuck in the elevator with?"

1) Manuel Uribe (google that one if you need to)

2) Anyone eating ranch dressing

3) Anyone with pickle-breath

4) Anyone who stood between you & me and a diet coke

5) Me, on a cleanse (stuck elevators and boats are discouraged under this scenario)

FYI--tonight, after the conference let out, in a crowded elevator we stopped on a floor and 3 punk-looking tattoo-covered specimen stepped on. One said, "It stinks in here." All was silent so I spoke up from the back, "Excuse me" in an embarrassed tone. He quickly apologized and said he didn't mean me. I didn't really fluff, I just wanted to say "excuse me" in a crowded elevator when someone commented that it stunk.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Random things that motivated me recently...

After sitting in a continuing education class for 8 hours with a bunch of accountants (hey, it could be least they weren't actuaries), my brain is as numb as my derrierre.

I finally got internet access again by CHANGING rooms. Marriott New Orleans your beds are amazingly comfortable, but your internet connection is worse than the Abbey Inn in St. George. And that is bad!!!

I checked my email and Behold! There was an inspiring one in my Gmail account:

Subject: Choosing Charity

Get to work!!!

That's it. The entire email. Sent by a caring person telling me to get busy and work on my third novel in the Faith, Hope & Charity trilogy. Who sent it? I did. I guess I care about myself, I just forget sometimes.

Lunch was served: A gristle-y (or grisly, depending on how you feel about it) hunk of meat hanging off a short-oval bone. I asked anyone if they knew what it was. No one did. I'll call it "roast beast." They waited for me to try it. 8 strangers, who clearly don't know about my food issues. I scraped off the various veggie-pieces-in-a-strangely-spiced-sauce and took a bite. Eewwww. Iced tea for a drink. Eewwww. Caesar salad. Eewwww. A custard-looking dessert thingy in a teeny-tiny tart crust. Semi-eewwww.

Mixed nuts and Slim Jims for dinner again tonight!

New Orleans is SO wasted on me.

The new PR lady at my publisher--I'll call her PLAMP (it's an acronym, people) sent me an inspirational email that, combined with my own email to myself, made me feel like writing. She forced me to join Twitter. Not really, she just said she would never talk to me again if I didn't. Not really. She wrote that she would not help me anymore. Really. She also wrote:

"NOTHING takes the place of personal interaction with your audience. NOTHING!

Your audience is out there and it is your job to find out where they congregate, introduce yourself, and give them a reason to care.

So audience: I'm looking for where you congregate! This is your notice.

I need to get some accounting-type work done tonight, but the only inspiring emails I get about that are from the AICPA on my birthday telling me I might die and I should increase my life insurance.

My sister-in-law also motivates me. She made me watch "The Biggest Loser" (hmmmmm) and when the trainer dude on there challenged me to exercise during the commercial I did 10 pushups. The man kind of push ups, not the girly kind. I repeated it through two successive commercial breaks. That's 30 push-ups. That's a pretty good work-out for a week, I'd say.

When I was packing for this trip, I packed my workout clothes, because the Marriott has a work-out room. Actually, I packed them because I had extra room in my suitcase and thought I'd delude myself momentarily into thinking I would actually work out after sitting for 8 hours numbing my brain and buttocks. I took the stuff back out and put it in the closet where it belongs. I figured if I felt REALLY strongly like I wanted to work out, I could always do 30 more pushups. Hey, it is a new week.

Wow, I guess I may be a Big Loser after all.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Happy Birthday! Have you considered increasing your life insurance?

I am officially a pioneer. Since September 24th (my birthday) I have been LIVING the days of ’47 and will do so for another 361 days (unless I expire prior to the big 4 Dozen!)

I spent my happy birthday working my brains out in Elko, NV.

One thing you don’t want to see, first thing in the morning, on your birthday:

(this is from an actual email I received ON my birthday from the AICPA)

“You only have a few more days to increase your CPA Life coverage, issued by The ... Insurance Company of America, for the October 1, 2009 Plan Entrance Date! Act now and make sure your family has the financial protection they need to help maintain their lifestyle in case you die...

...Increase your term life coverage now...

...Remember, if you were to die, your CPA Life Plan benefit can help pay for expenses such as…”

On. My. Birthday.

Why didn’t they just send an executioner? Nothing says “Happy Birthday” quite like “Hey, you might die.” Hallmark, they ain’t.

What delightful birthday greetings have you received?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

If your thoughts had a voice...

I waited in line behind a multi-earringed, amply-tatooed, young dad at the grocery store yesterday. Yes, it sounds judgmental and, yes, I was being that way. He had his little boy with him, who I guessed was about three or four. As the checker was slower than my son doing the dishes, and I’m nosier than your next-door neighbor, I listened in on the conversation. It went something like:

Dad (in kind gentle voice) “No, put that back.”

(child grabs at the ball)

Dad (still using nice tone) “No, we can’t buy it.”

(child hikes himself up on counter)

Dad (carefully tugging him off the counter) “It’s time to go.”

(child reluctantly following Dad, asking one more time)

Dad (kindly, but firmly taking his son’s hand) “Remember, we have soda pop at home?”

(child tries to get away mumbling unintelligibly) “I want blah blah blah”

Dad (still patient) “We have soda pop at home, from your party yesterday, remember?”

I was so impressed. This man exhibited more patience to his child than most mothers I’ve seen, including me. They moved slowly enough that I could hear this entire exchange and I was thinking this dad deserved some kind of Good Example award. Then the child spoke once more, clearly and loudly: “Dumbass.”

Hmmmmm. You don’t always hear what you expect.

At work today, I overheard an employee talking about the horse psychic she had seen and talked to. She was very happy about the news that the horse she wanted, wanted her too.

Horse psychics. Once again, I heard something I did not expect.

Hmmmmm. Since horses and donkeys (asses) are members of the same family, and both are technically “dumb,” I’m thinking that this horse psychic could have a whole new clientele if she hung out in grocery stores and listened in on people’s conversations like I do.

Of course, she would probably already know what they were thinking. Another upside is that people are more interested in their futures than horses are anyway, so there would be a bigger demand. Not to mention they might actually pay.


According to Wikipedia, “The wild ancestor of the donkey is the African Wild Ass.”

According to me, I may have just sighted the “Albertson Dumb Ass.”

Sunday, August 30, 2009

YOYOs...a brief history

When my husband is in charge of dinner (which he does willingly) he often asks, “What should we have for dinner?” If I knew that, then half the battle would be over. When I can’t provide any suggestions, he declares a YOYO night for dinner—translated as You’re On Your Own.

We—meaning everyone but him—yoyo with PB&J sandwiches or ramen. After we finish, he wanders into the kitchen and grills a steak for himself. Hmmm.

While we shopped together recently, as I loaded up on hamburger, he saw London broil steak on sale and piled a couple of megapacks into our cart.

When we got home, I asked him if I should separate them into separate packages—he said “Yes.” I knew it. I presented the seven packs of steak to my daughter and said, “Here are the steaks for Dad to eat when he makes us yoyo.”

Yoyos originated as a weapon for hunters—a rock on a string didn’t have to be retrieved (you didn’t have to climb down from the tree to retrieve your rock/weapon if you missed the rabbit, you just pulled the string up and chucked it at the next unsuspecting bunny).

My husband has modified the yoyo for his own hunting pleasures. Steak.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Evidence that the world DOES revolve around me

I have long suspected that I am the center of the universe—at least in my slightly skewed sense of reality.

Today I found some proof:

FACT: When I left for work today…

• The 12-year old was on the computer
• The 15-year old was at a friend’s house
• The 18-year old was lying on the couch watching TV
• The 21-year old was working on his car

When I came home from work today…

• The 12-year old was on the computer
• The 15-year old was at a friend’s house
• The 18-year old was in my recliner watching TV
• The 21-year old was working on his car

Apparently, time stood still while I was gone.

You may be alert enough to discern that the 18-year old was not in the EXACT place as when I left, but you should note: the almost imperceptible shift was within three feet of the original location and the gravitation was to MY chair, thus proving my point that it is all about me.

Need more proof?

FACT: When I left for work today…

• I had just started a load of laundry

When I came home from work today…

• My husband was finishing a load of laundry

Coincidence? I think not.

Sunday, August 9, 2009


Tuesday, August 11

7:00 – 10:00 p.m.

Barnes & Noble Authorpalooza
University Crossings Plaza
330 East 1300 South
Orem, UT

Meet over 30 local authors, including:

*Laura Bingham
*Jillayne Clements
*James Dashner
*Terri Ferran
*Jessica Day George
*Mette Ivie Harrison
*Michael O'Reilly
*J. Scott Savage
*Emily Wing Smith
**and more!**

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Can You Hear Me Now?

There are certain dangers associated with cell phones,

On the way to Florida a few months ago, my teenage daughter went to use the airplane facilities, and as she hit the flush button, she realized that clunk she’d heard a few seconds earlier wasn’t the passing of the crayons she’d eaten in first grade, but was actually her cell phone. It had fallen from her back pocket into the toilet and had been sucked into the bright blue world of chemical sanitation with the touch of a finger.

I had a near miss myself, the other night. In my sprint to the throne room (literal translation—potty emergency), I didn’t recall that my phone was in my back pocket until I heard the thud as it hit the ground. Better a thud than a splash, I say. Being a mature adult (literal translation—I forget things really quickly) by the time I finished, I forgot the phone had fallen and walked away.

The next day, when I went to get my phone from the charger, the cord was there but the phone was MIA. I couldn’t even call it to find it, because having spent 5 ½ hours on it the day before with a client, it was dead—the phone, not the client.

Fortunately for me, I drink a gallon of water a day (plus a wee bit of Diet Coke) so I am a Frequent Flyer on the Porcelain Express. Lo and behold, behind the toilet, next to a hair ball the size of Rhode Island, lay the phone, oblivious to the unsanitary conditions in which it dwelt.

Sometimes you’re better off dead—if you’re a cell phone in a back pocket.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Terri, Terri, quite contrary, how does your garden grow?

I wanted a garden this year. Not just a few tomato plants fighting the morning glory at the side of the house where all the snakes vacation—but a real garden.

My husband complied. Armed with scrap wood, his trusty drill and a 14-year old son with ADHD, he built a bevy of beautiful garden boxes. If three can be considered a bevy. The box-buildin’ is a totally different story, however.

I go out to check my seedlings on a semi-regular basis. We have some of the usual problems—like the soak-hoses splitting, causing a flood, and washing away half of the dirt and many, many sproutless seeds. Oh, and forgetting to water it for several days at a time—luckily June was a rainy month this year.

But lo and behold! Things are growing! The tomatoes are doing great and so are the other crops-to-be such as peppers (three kinds—which I hate) and the cantaloupe and the watermelon. Only one of the cucumber plants survived, sniff.

I eagerly watched the sprouts—the cauliflower is pathetic with only two plants from the whole package of seeds. But the broccoli! I AM A BROCCOLI-GROWING WONDER! I watched the blossoms and eagerly anticipated the fresh fruit—I mean vegetables. Whatever—I’m excited!

It has been a few days since I checked on my precious leafy stalks. Was I ever surprised by what I found. LOOK AT THE BOUNTEOUS BROCCOLI! It’s a proliferous cruciferous, indeed.

Now look at broccoli stripped of its lush leaves:

Yep. I figured out the broccoli were really radishes. I took a taste of one. Like a middle-aged hag weeding in July and discovering her beloved broccoli were radishes—they were hot, tough, and bitter.

I’ve been wondering where the radishes were planted. What other surprises will I reap, since I can't remember or recognize what I've sown...

Thursday, July 2, 2009


My three-year old granddaughter has a new catchphrase. She learned it from her mother, who refrains from swearing (most of the time). When something surprises her, shocks her, or she just can’t figure it out, she exclaims loudly, “WHAT THE…?”

Her two-year old friend is a little more daring. When he heard the aforementioned “WHAT THE…?” he restated it in a more complete form, “WHAT THE HECK?”

They thought it was so funny they practically blew their macaroni and cheese out through their little noses.

Which you may think is not possible.

I assure you it is.

When my youngest daughter was about one year old, she was happily stuffing her little face with spaghetti. She loved the stuff and made a huge mess.

The next morning as the whole family was sitting around the breakfast table, breakfasting, she lets out a mighty sneeze. We looked to make sure she’s okay and there was a spaghetti noodle hanging out of her nostril. We were not eating spaghetti for breakfast.


If spaghetti can travel mouth to nasal cavity to nostril, so can macaroni—they’re from the same family of pasta products.

Which brings me to the picture at the top of this blog: My son invented the perfect nose-guard for wayward pasta (and he doesn’t even know it). Turn those extra surgical gloves into a practical use and conversation-starting fashion accessory. Don’t have any extra surgical gloves lying around? Don’t worry, the dentist has a whole box of them. At least mine did.

Yes, I know…we have to watch him at all times. My son, not the dentist.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Diggin' for Gold!

A is for Alivia
B is for Belle
C is for Cute
D is for Dig
E is for Eeeew
F is for Finger
G is for Gold

It’s so much cuter when it is your grandchild instead of your child!

Friday, June 19, 2009

When your Bubble is Burst

When I was nine or ten years old, a delicious innovation in bubble gum was introduced—Bubble Yum. It was a child’s chewing sensation. Thick, soft rectangular chunks of sugar-laden heaven—it had only five pieces to a pack, but it was so worth it.

Having lived a life of occasional Wrigley’s chewing gum (that wouldn’t create blowable bubbles), and Dubble Bubble (often hard enough to crack a tooth or jaw), the miracle of Bubble Yum was greeted with gusto by my mouth.

There was one downside—the yummy, gummy glob lost its flavor far too soon.

I spent my Saturdays flopped on my bed, reading every book I could get my hands on, and this particular Saturday was even better than usual because my sister and I each had our very own pack of Bubble Yum.

My gum quickly lost its flavor, but no matter—I spit it out and popped in a new piece and continued my reading marathon. The second piece followed the first, and the third piece found its way into my mouth. Life was good.

My bubble was burst, so to speak, when my older sister came in and took her gum down from her shelf. She slowly opened it, unwrapped the first plump piece, and popped it into her mouth. She stared at me as she savored the sensation of the soft sugary morsel. “How many pieces do you have left?” she asked her seemingly innocent question.

I counted the two remaining pieces in my package. “I’m on my third.”

Her gloating nature revealed itself. “I’m only on my first.” She smiled like the gloater she was, put her pack of gum back on the shelf and left the room.

I tried to ignore her, but couldn’t. I had always been a piggy when it came to sweets. In those days, a quarter could buy a bagful of candy. When we were fortunate enough to each get a quarter, we would spend it all on candy. Mine would be gobbled up in one day, but my sister could make hers last for a week—and she always made sure I knew it.

I tried to make my third piece last—I really did—but it was beyond my capacity. Soon piece number four was in my mouth. Perhaps thirty minutes had passed and my mind left the plot of the book and fixated on my final piece of Bubble Yum. I craved it. I wanted it. I seized it. I chewed it.

I concentrated again on my book, enjoying the texture, taste, and elasticity of my fifth and final piece of Bubble Yum. Truly my life was complete at that moment.

The moment came to an end a few minutes later when my sister wandered in and grabbed her gum. She took her second piece, popped it in her mouth and smugly said. “I’m on my second piece. How many do you have left?”
As she gloated at me again, it didn’t occur to me to lie. I felt a little embarrassed and annoyed as I confessed, “This is my last piece.” She smirked at me, put her pack of gum on the shelf, and left the room.

After she left I reflected on how mean she was to gloat at me about her miserly ways, and I burned to find a way to get even with her. Now I never considered myself to be a thief, but when my final chunk of gum lost its flavor, I was drawn to her pack, just setting there on the shelf. She needed to be taught a lesson.

I put down my book, climbed on her bed, and took her gum down from the shelf. I unwrapped her third chunk of gum, removed it from the wrapper, then took my ABC gum out of my mouth, formed it into a nice rectangle, placed it into the wrapper, wrapped it up, and carefully put it back in the pack. I put the pack back on the shelf, and stretched out on my own bed, book in hand, nose in book. I savored the gum and my revenge.

I didn’t have long to wait. She came in a little while later, gave me a condescending smile as she retrieved her gum. “Is yours all gone?” she asked. I didn’t answer, keeping my nose buried in the book so I wouldn’t give myself away.

I stole a peek at her as she unwrapped her gum. She was still looking at me, not the gum. I stifled a giggle. She popped it in her mouth as she stared at me. I was shaking with laughter. She looked confused as she chomped on the gum. She realized something was wrong. As the texture and taste registered in her brain she shrieked, “Eeewww! You already chewed this!”

I couldn’t hold back. I rolled on the bed with laughter. She spit out the gum, leapt on me and beat the snot out of me. Such is life in the revenge lane—sweet, but quick to lose its savor.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Look out below!

I’ve spent the past few days in Rawlins, Wyoming…work, not pleasure, in case you thought it might be a vacation hotspot.

I was eating a breadstick at lunch and felt a hard crunch—my temporary crown cracked and half stayed glued on, and the other half tumbled around in my mouth. I’ve heard of spitting teeth, but spitting crowns?

Since I only had half a crown, I was limited as to what I could eat for dinner. Since I was in Rawlins, and it is a pretty small place, the choices of where to go were limited. My limits had limits.

Should I go to the Hoot n Howl or the drive-through liquor store? I ended up at the City Market, wandering through the aisles, looking for something to eat. My thoughts meandered along with me: Chocolate milk looks good…Good n Plenty will work if I only chew on one side…side of beef—roast beef, I have a microwave in my hotel room…room for that package of snickerdoodles just waiting for me to grab…grab a fork, roast beef is messy if eaten with my fingers straight from the package…package of plastic forks has way too many for my needs…need only one fork and I don’t want to walk all the way back…back of the store has a deli with individual sporks folded neatly in two parts…part of me wants to give up and eat trail mix for dinner one more time, I still have half a bag…bag the whining, buy the food, hurry and eat so I can go to bed.

Tired and hungry, I climbed out of the car and breathed the fresh air—clean from the afternoon thunder storm. I heard the cry of a seagull and relished the moment of being one with nature…


Nature had become one with me in the form of a bird pooping on my head.

Maybe the cry of the seagull was a warning, “Look out below!”
More likely it was one smart aleck gull gloating at another, “I bet I can crap on that woman’s head from fifty feet!” He won the bet.

Next time I’ll stay inside and eat the trail mix…again.

Turns out I was pooped in more ways than one.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

one foot, two foot, I got a new foot!

One day I woke up to find I had grown a foot overnight. Two of my feet were gargantuan and the third dangled uselessly from a flabby calf. A barrage of thoughts flooded my mind. What mystery was afoot? Did my feet make me look fat? Where could I score an extra shoe? Do three feet make a yard? Would I be charged extra for pedicures now?

Not wanting to get off on the wrong foot, I lay abed and pondered my situation. How would I handle life as a tri-pod? How would I know if I really was putting my best foot forward? Would my two huge, puffy, outside feet actually explode?

I wanted to put my foot down and take action, but realized that I would trip over my own feet if I tried to take a stand.

Like a pregnant woman with border-line toxemia whose photo-happy mother had shoved her aging foot in between my own swollen extremities, I labored to rid myself of the image of being a three-foot woman for the rest of my life.

I needed a nap, so I obliged myself.

Fortunately, when I awoke, I was no longer a fifteen-toed freak of nature. If it wasn’t for the highly-realistic photographic evidence, I would think I made the whole thing up.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Jaxson the Sugarbaby

I just have to tell you about my newest "grandbaby." His name is Jaxson and he is a sugar baby. As a school assignment, my 6th-grader had to make and take care of a "baby" for several days. The "baby" was made out of 5 lb bag of sugar. Thanks to the creative genius of her friend's mother, Jaxson is one of the cutest sugar babies I've ever seen!

I had the privilege of babysitting this sweet little baby, and he was such a little sweetheart--good as gold!

BUT......You have to watch sugar babies AT ALL TIMES!!!
They look sweet, but they are mischief makers!

While he was supposed to be taking a nap, I caught Jaxson doing a few things...

He went swimming, without a life jacket!

(think sugar + water!)

He somehow got outside and caught in a microburst--it spun him about!

Then...I caught him chillin' with some friends!

When I told him to lie down and take a nap, he cried "Gran! I've made a big mess!"

Eeeeew! Disgusting!

He really "messed up" when he started giggling while I changed him, so I followed the trail...the little stinker had played a trick on me!

It was quite a day! Now I don't have the heart to tell him why I stopped calling him "Sweetie" and have started calling him "Cookie."

We've learned from Jaxson that each must fill the measure of his creation--and we'll love him no matter what shape he takes!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

What is more fun than Googling yourself?

Doing a search on your name at the Library of Congress and seeing yourself THREE times! Fan-freakin'-tastic!

and...because there is NO number following the "-" after the date 1962...I'm pretty sure I'm not dead yet! Good news all around!

If you can stand to scroll down, you can see the contents of "Life's Alphabet Soup: A Crock of Wit from A to Z".....well, from A to Z.

What a lovely day it is today :-)
[ 1 ]
Ferran, Terri, 1962-
Finding faith / Terri Ferran.

ACCESS:Jefferson or Adams Bldg General or Area Studies Reading Rms
CALL NUMBER:PS3606.E734 F56 2007

[ 2 ]
Ferran, Terri, 1962-
Having hope / Terri Ferran.

[ 3 ]
Ferran, Terri, 1962-
Life's alphabet soup : a crock of wit from A to Z / Terri Ferran.


DATABASE: Library of Congress Online Catalog
YOU SEARCHED: Author/Creator Browse = Ferran, Terri, 1962-
SEARCH RESULTS: Displaying 3 of 3.

Life's alphabet soup : a crock of wit from A to Z / Terri Ferran.
LC Control No.:
LCCN Permalink:
Type of Material:
Book (Print, Microform, Electronic, etc.)
Ham and hay
Ice cream
Lake powell
Vacuum cleaner salesman
Yoyo dinners
Motherhood --Humor.
Mothers --Humor.
Family life --Humor.
LC Classification:
Library of Congress Holdings Information Not Available.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Things you DON'T usually hear in church!

Spoiler Alert! If you haven’t read Finding Faith, you may not want to read on, unless you like to have your reading experiences ruined.

Things you don’t usually hear at church:

While I was walking down the hallway in church, a neighbor and friend (?) yelled out to me, “Murderer!”

He is not a quiet, timid guy. Let’s call him “John”. When John speaks, neighborhood children jump. Dogs crawl whimpering under the nearest porch. Sometimes it’s vice versa.

I sidled up to the library counter. (Evil, knowing grin) “What did you hear?”

“You killed [name of beloved character in my first novel]!”

I shrugged, “Yeah, I did.”

I’m not even sorry.

His wife told me later, that he was even more surprised that I didn’t even flinch when he yelled out “Murderer!”

A couple of days later I received a lovely email from a reader in Iowa. She confessed to her daughter finding her in the bathtub, sobbing, when she read the part where [name of beloved character in my first novel] died.

Very gratifying.

Even more gratifying is picturing my neighbor, sitting in his tub (clothed, of course—what did YOU think?), sobbing his heart out, reading about the untimely demise of [name of beloved character in my first novel].

Not that crying over something like that is unmanly. I just think that crying about it, sitting in your bathtub, is an “in touch with your feminine side” kind of thing to do, especially for someone as big and manly as “John”!

It almost makes me want to knock off another fictional character.

Monday, April 20, 2009

What's wrong with this picture?

It happened on one of those zippity-doo-dah-days...

Wait, it happened at a chamber of commerce luncheon honoring some of our excellent educators (and I am not being facetious)

In case you cannot read the quote "TEACHER APPRECIATION"


Anything wrong with this picture? What happened to spell check? Wait, frosting doesn't come with spell check, and you can't text it either.

It happened here in our valley. I'm sure the teachers were so proud.

But don't worry, it isn't our tax dollars hard at work; it's our local Sam's Club's dollars.

At least the cake tasted good, even if it wasn't in good taste.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Ladies' Night Book signing

Join Us For Ladies Night!
Join us for Ladies Night at Provident Book!Saturday, April 4, 2009

6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Meet and mingle with LDS authors:

Stacy Anderson
Michele Ashman Bell
Julie Bellon
Janet Burningham
Terri Ferran
Kristen Landon
Tristi Pinkston
and more!
Door prizes given away every 15 minutes, all night long!

661 W State, Ste APleasant Grove, UT

Monday, March 30, 2009

Comments and actions that mean a LOT!

I had a great time at Seagull Book last Saturday--made some new friends and sold some books. The staff at the West Jordan Seagull are Wonderful! Thanks so much to "M", my sista-from-another-mista who always supports me, even when she's just run a race (in which she beat her personal best--Go Melissa!) My M-I-L also shows up faithfully, even when I forget to invite her for steak & guacamole.

I want to share two reader comments I received last week:

"Sister Ferran, Thank you for writing such awesome books! I LOVE THEM AS MUCH AS I LOVE TWILIGHT..." (okay--I added the screaming caps!) Thanks, Kiana. It's one of the best compliments I've ever received because it came from an avid teen reader who loves the Twilight series. (I personally like Ms. Meyer's The Host better).


"Terri, I loved your book, Having Hope. But when you write the next book, can you be in a happier place?" Candice, I'm just saying--That IS my happier place!I loved her comment because it was from a lady near my own age, and, let's face it--the books are designed to make you cry (a little), and laugh (a little more), and leave you feeling just a little bit better than when you started.

It's all this bean-counting that's sucking my creative juices out into the charred remains of Accounting b-b-q.


Sunday, March 22, 2009

Upcoming Booksigning

I'll be at Seagull Bookstore in West Jordan (1625 W 90th So) on Saturday, March 28th from noon - 2:00 pm for a signing. Please stop in to say "Hi" and pick up Having Hope, the sequel to Finding Faith.

There will be other authors signing as well that day (although I don't have a list of which ones, specifically)--but take it from me:

Authors are fun people to talk to! We are so fun, we often talk to ourselves. Sometimes we make up people to talk to, which works extremely well when you're writing a book (as long as it's fiction), but not so great when you are sitting at a table, in a bookstore, by yourself...

So treat yourself to a browse in the bookstore this Saturday. I'm sure there is a book there that is just calling out to you "Read me, read me!" And, you just might see a not-quite-right author talking to herself!

P.S. There will be chocolate :-)

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Viva la vida!

84 degrees, golden rays of sun permeating your skin, turquoise Mer Caribe rolling in warm sparkling waves over your feet, long, cold pull of Coca-cola Light, wafting coconut aroma of Australian Gold sunscreen.....


28 degrees, snowing, 100+ fender-benders in one day, scraping windshields, slaving over a hot computer......

You be the judge!

Hasta luego, mis amigos y amigas!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Deep thoughts to ponder...

If you ever thought you couldn't liken the scriptures to yourself, please consider the following:

Job 5:6

"Can that which is unsavoury be eaten without salt? or is there any taste in the white of an egg?"

If that isn't applicable to my daily life, I don't know what is. I mean, have you ever eaten just an egg white? Especially without salt?

Which brings me to the next question. Did Job have high blood pressure so he had to restrict his sodium intake? or high cholesterol, that he had to limit the egg yolks?

I'm thinking that food played a more serious role in Job's life than I first thought. He was going through some mighty harsh times and yet his wits were about him enough to know that some of us really relate to things better when they are phrased in terms of food.

Or bathrooms.

Consider the age-old question--Does a bear [potty] in the woods? (G-rating added)

My answer is--Not if there's a flush toilet around.

Anything else would be just too hard to bear--or bare.

At any rate, it's the reason I prefer camping at an ocean-front, five-star resort in Cancun.

No bears, an abundance of salt, and hold the eggs entirely.

Did I mention cabana boys bearing diet Coke?

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Having Hope is here!

My new book is finally out and it looks great!

Having Hope continues the story of Kit Matthews and takes her to Romania where she has to make some tough choices.

There is absolutely nothing like holding a brand new book in your hands, breathing in the aroma of ink and paper, and anticipating the journey you're about to travel. I love reading and I love writing.

The book will be on the bookstore shelves in 2-4 weeks. Meanwhile, you can order an autographed copy directly from my website

In this moment, Steve Martin (the actor), comes to my mind:

1) From the movie, The Jerk - "The new phone books are here, the new phone books are here! I am somebody!" and:

2) Fromthe movie, Mixed Nuts - "In every pothole there is hope. You have to drop the "o" "t" and "l" and move the "p" over, but in every pothole there is hope!"

I am also a Steve Martin fan!

Happy reading!

Saturday, January 31, 2009

25 things about me

My MIL Susan said I need to update my blog.
I have been running short on time, this January has been brutal on the work front. January is almost over (just a few hours more) so I need to blog.
I took the time to respond to the tag "25 Things About Me" on Facebook.

I liked what I wrote and want to share:

1. I didn't have "notes" under tabs in my profile page, I had to add it, which confused the instructions a little bit for me. (Note to self: Go grab a Diet Coke)

2. I have SIX children and they are ALL wonderful except for FIVE of them!

3. Just kidding on #2. Today at least TWO are wonderful.

4. I love the burn of Diet Coke as it eats through the throat mucous and protective lining of my stomach that protects it from eating itself, but it is all good because the Diet Coke also eats the stomach acid.

5. I graduated with my BS in Accounting in December--cum laude

6. If I graduated just in BS, it would have been summa cum laude

7. My siblings and I are named: Gary, Sherry, Carrie, Terri, Barry, & Jerry. Our mom's name was Mary. Sherry married Harry.

8. I mistakenly exited through the emergency exit in a university library once and got chased by an angry librarian who was convinced I'd stolen something.

9. It would be silly to steal from a library when I have my own library card.

10. I owe approximately $5.65 in library fines.

11. The fines are because I let my children use my library card and they lost the books.

12. I lost a library book once and had to pay for it. I was sure the library lady had made a mistake and paid the fine under protest. Then I found it six months later in the side of my suitcase that I'd taken to Cancun.

13. I love Cancun!

14. I love books!

15. I love Diet Coke, books and Cancun--especially when they co-exist in my world at the very same moment. When a cabana boy is present to fetch said Diet Coke--let's just say it's a little piece of heaven on earth.

16. I am a CPA. My human-like troll side is in control now because I have to work as a CPA doing audits and I really want my creative brain to take over, but clients really frown on audit reports that state "We have found the management to be greedy task-masters that oppress the common people and are cheapskates who pay for their trips to the SuperBowl with company money and claim the little sticker on their Mercedes that says "I brake for underlings" makes it a company write-off but otherwise the financial statements seem to be materially free of misstatements..."

17. I love to write

18. I love getting paid to write

19. I love making people laugh--even if it is AT me.

20. I have two darling granddaughters (which are the reward for me being a parent all those years)

21. I have fibromyalgia. I keep it in a little compartment that I carry with me always. Unfortunately it keeps escaping and wreaking havoc throughout my body. Owwww, it hurts.

22. I do not like pets. My children have signed a "no pets" contract. (I would make exception for cabana boys from Cancun bearing Diet Coke--as pets, that is)

23. I am married to my husband (and he, to me)

24. My book "Having Hope" is being released in February, and my book "Alphabet Soup: A Crock of Wit from A to Z" is being released in August.

25. My Diet Coke is gone--time to sign off!

Friday, January 9, 2009

Of Mice and Teeth

I've had a request to add photos to yesterday's blog. I was just going to edit the blog, yet I thought this might be a little more fun for me. But first, a word from our sponsor, Dr. Bill:

(blog owner's note: Dr. Bill does not officially sponsor my blog, nor even read it. As a matter of fact, when I told him I was blogging about the tooth episode, his response was "Why?" followed with "Who's going to read it?" Don't worry, he doesn't know how to text either. So why would I consider Dr. Bill my sponsor? Simply put--he has placed numerous crowns in my head, the latest of which has given me the superpower of which I cannot speak too openly)

So Dr. Bill here is a little ad I wrote for you that may help you break into the gangsta market:

If you want a grill,
Call Dr. Bill
If your need is bling,
Give him a ring!

(In an actual ad I would list his number, but I don't really have his permission. Not that he would ever know, because he doesn't read blogs. But when the gansta population suddenly started calling him and clogging his phone lines, he could be concerned).

Now the photos from yesterdays blog:

My new smile!

The door where the mice disappeared (ok, it isn' the actual door, which is brown and at my church, not my house--but in an effort to make it more realistic, I DID put chocolate in the closet before I took the picture).

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