Crazy Good News and a Giveaway

My Grammy-nominated husband, having way too much fun with my dad's karaoke machine.

My Grammy-nominated husband, having way too much fun with my dad’s karaoke machine.

Hello there! So, I’ve been kind of a slacker blogger lately. But this is, in fact, a good sign: It means nobody else in my family has been diagnosed with cancer! Nothing is driving me to the brink of insanity! Nobody is in the hospital! I’m just busy.

But today, I have a couple of most excellent things to report:

First and foremost among them: my dad is doing well. We were up in Maine with my family for Thanksgiving, and he was up and about, in good spirits, and not in any severe pain — completely different from how ill he was right when he was diagnosed.

He took the lead in indoor blanket and card table fort-building for the kids, philosophical discussion for the grown-ups, and karaoke after Thanksgiving dinner for all of us.  (Classic country hits and 80s pop dominated, and I did what I think was a very respectable rendition of the Carpenters’ “Close to you.”)

And all of this was possible because the chemo my dad is getting is working. It’s kicking cancer cell ass. Whether it will continue to work long term remains to be seen. Mantle Cell lymphoma is a doozy. But for now, he’s feeling good, and is content and comfortable. We’ll take it.

Also in the good news department — make that unbelievably great news — Alastair’s latest album was nominated for a GRAMMY (that’s supposed to be all caps, but I’d probably cap it for “holy crap” emphasis even if that weren’t the case).

We knew that it had a decent shot. There’s been a lot of buzz around this album in the kids’ music world, with some heavyweight kids’ music types (yes, there is such a thing) giving it attention. Still, a GRAMMY?! (That time, imagine double caps, for emphasis.)

We spent Friday evening, when we knew it would be announced, trying to act like we weren’t waiting until 11:00 when the complete list of nominations was going to be posted on the website. We watched a movie, then some Daily Show on DVR. We twiddled our thumbs and ate frozen mango chunks (a recent discovery in our household. So good!)

Then, at 11:01 sharp, just as we were about to casually go online,  a friend who’d beaten us to it texted with the good news.

To win or get nominated for a GRAMMY (oh for God’s sake. I’m just going to use lower case from now on) in the children’s category an album actually has to be musically great (not just popular – hence the fact that the Fresh Beat Band has never won one). It can’t just win because it’s for a great cause. So it’s a wonderful honor that the Grammy voters and powers that be think Singing Our Way Through is the former.

But it’s extra awesome because the attention the album will get as a result means more people will buy it, which means we can get it out (for free) to more families facing childhood cancer — which is why it was created in the first place.

Pretty amazing that what began as Alastair and Clio making up songs about monkeys in her hospital room to lift their spirits has become…THIS! (caps intentional.)

On a much more trivial note: It has always been a bucket list dream of mine to attend a major, celebrity-filled awards show. It was one I always put in the “will probably never happen” column, along with owning a pied-à-terre in Manhattan, another one in Paris, and a villa in Tuscany.

But come January 26, to my amazement, Alastair and I will be walking the red carpet (for reals!) in LA while dressed to the nines. The award for children’s music is part of the earlier ceremony, with all the other not-cool-enough-for-television awards. So we probably won’t get to go to the big fancy shmancy show with the likes of Taylor Swift and Jay-Z and Katy Perry. But no matter; I still get to buy a fabulous dress. Maybe we’ll even get a schwag bag!

So. In honor of the album’s nomination, and the holidays, and schwag bags, I’m feeling like giving away some copies of Double Time. Which, I’ve been told, makes a great gift — for expectant parents, for current parents, for parents expecting currants, for people who have struggled with depression, and for people who just like to read memoirs.

To enter, just leave a comment below.  I’ll randomly choose two winners next Sunday, the 15th, and announce them here and on my Facebook page. In the comment form where it asks for an email address, be sure to enter your actual email so I can contact you if you win!

By the way: Special thanks to all of you who donated to / have bought copies of Singing Our Way Through. And for everyone: If you’d like to buy a copy, or if you’re a patient family and would like a free copy, click here.




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48 Responses to “Crazy Good News and a Giveaway”

  1. Tracey C says:

    Congrats all around!! Glad life is giving you guys a bit of a break and even some good news!!

    • David says:

      I really like Asimov.I stetard to read him when I was a teenager (around 16) just by accident. A friend and I stetard to talk about the differences we found in a movie with regards to a book (“The Martian Chronicles” by Ray Bradbury), when we watched on TV a commercial about a new book collection by Orbis (a spaniard editorial company) about SF.We went to the closest newsstand (where the books were available) and we found the second or third book in the collection: “Caves of Steel”.Now that I leave in Canada, when I find one the books that I already own in Spanish, I tend to read them both to see how good the Spanish translation is.Nevertheless, I enjoy Asimov a lot (with the exception of the Bible books…which are still unread).

  2. Lin says:

    So awesome!! Congrats.

  3. Sue Ryan says:

    All I can say is that you so totally deserve a trip to LA (I think they are in LA, they used to alternate between LA and NYC), you deserve a fantastically glamorous dress, some Jimmy Choo style shoes, and a bloody great night out. And I hope it wins a Grammy. Good luck, I wish I were a voter because I’d try to sneak in an extra vote for it!

    • Olgun says:

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  4. Joan says:

    Dear Jane,
    Fantastic news on all fronts! Keeping my fingers crossed for a Grammy win!!

  5. Bridget says:

    Win or no win, I am excited for your grammy trip!!! Alastaire is more than deserving!!!!! :) – Good luck!

  6. Leslie says:

    I am so, so happy for you. :-) Can’t wait for red carpet pictures!!

  7. trista mj says:

    Congratulations and thanks for the giveaway.

    • Damla says:

      Such beautiful pticures!!!!Steph and Ali’s Wedding photos were amazinglyCaptured by you, now who better toCapture their little gorgeous bundle of joy!!He is absolutely beautiful!!!!!!

  8. Sally Kingston says:

    That’s so exciting! Congrats!

  9. Trina Arnett says:

    I am over the moon happy for you!! Glad to hear that your dad is doing well. And, completely crazy about the fact that you will be rockin’ the red carpet. We finally got around to buying a slew of your fab hubby’s music, so we are looking forward to that for the holidays. We bought dupes of the kids’ albums for the grandsons. I’m sure they will love it. Keep on keepin’ on, Jane and Alastair. You guys are amazing!

  10. Liz says:

    Such great news! We’ve been rockin to Cow Says Moock ever since our mutual friends gave it to us when I was pregnant with our first child… Haven’t gotten to hear the new one yet but know it is amazing even without the GRAMMY nom.

  11. April says:

    So happy for you guys! Rooting for you!

  12. Caroline whalen says:

    Awesomely happy post! Yay!

  13. Danielle Alleven says:

    Isn’t life strange? If not for cancer you may not be having this amazing experience. Congratulations to you and your whole family, you totally deserve a fun and light hearted evening with the stars and I will keep my fingers crossed that alistair wins!

  14. Wow Wow Wow! Amazing and wonderful, all of it. So glad to hear about your dad, and your husband deserves that Grammy. What will you wear on the red carpet?

  15. Anne Marie says:

    So glad to hear that your dad is doing better, and so happy to hear Alastair’s news as well!

  16. Donna says:

    Such great news! Since Alastair visited my youngest one’s preschool last week, he has not stopped singing Alastair’s songs. Also, due to some noun confusion on B’s part, he refers to Alastair as “the magician.” I thought you might get a kick out of that.

  17. Chantal Audet says:

    That is wonderful news! I play signing our way through in the car (and will often play it without the kids because a lot of the songs are just good). Good luck and have fun at the award show!

  18. Dana says:

    That is a lot of wonderful news! Congrats on all fronts!

  19. Jessica says:

    Congratulations! That is fabulous news. So glad to hear that your father is responding to treatment as well.

  20. Jill Russell says:

    What great news, on both fronts. I think you guys deserve to put on fancy clothes and have some red carpet treatment!

  21. Kate R. says:

    I am so unbelievably happy for all of you!! The album absolutely deserves to win. Can’t wait to hear about the red carpet :-) Wonderful news about your dad too!

  22. Mary says:

    Congratulations! That’s amazing news on both fronts! Enjoy the red carpet experience – you guys will totally rock it!

  23. SarahB says:

    Yay, that’s fantastic! And I would love a copy of your book, should I be so lucky. :)

  24. Frances says:

    Congratulations. A little sunshine breaking through.

  25. Ellie says:

    Congratulations! I’m a mom of twins and would love the book – I am thankful for blogs as my book about twins findings were few.

  26. Shoshanah says:

    Congrats! I can only imagine how much fun it’ll be just to attend the Grammy’s even without a nomination, so can only imagine how amazing of an experience it will be!

  27. Julie says:

    As I think you already know, we love you and are proud of you, and we think you’re all amazing. Perhaps we should go out for a beer next weekend.

  28. Fantastic news and well deserved ! How are you celebrating? Will the whole family go to L.A.? It was sooo good to read good news . MIMI

  29. Fantastic news and well deserved ! How are you celebrating? Will the whole family go to L.A.? It was sooo good to read good news . MIMI What’s a schwag bag?

  30. April says:

    ps I am so jealous of you getting to walk a red carpet! I have always wanted to do that! It will be like prom for Alastair and you. Get all dolled up and go glam and go all out. It will be wonderful! Plus if he wins you guys are going to want to look good up there!

    I want pictures!!!!

  31. Abbi Perets says:

    I totally get you on the not-blogging-when-life-is-good. Glad your dad is doing well, glad things are looking up all over, super excited for you and the Red Carpet!

  32. Kim Q says:

    So awesome! Congrats to your hubby. :o)

  33. Deb says:

    Congrats to you both – Alastair for the nomination and you for doing something on your bucket list!!!

  34. theresa. says:

    that’s so exciting!!! please post pictures of your red carpet ensemble :)

  35. Amy Lee says:

    A GRAMMY!! That’s so exciting and amazing for your family.

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  36. Sophie says:

    very cool! I’m a Somerville resident and just saw a poster up featuring a bunch of local musicians (including Alastair) singing for an upcoming benefit that I’ll definitely be checking out!

  37. liz says:


  38. Taryn T. says:

    Sounds like some exciting things are happening for you! Would love to win a copy of Double TIme!

  39. Melissa G says:

    Congratulations on ALL the good news!!! Time to celebrate! I always enjoy reading your blog :)

  40. Kerry Donahue says:

    Hi Jane – Congratulations. I’m sure you know by now that you DO get to go to the evening telecast. My husband Mark and I have gone a few times and we’ll be there this year as well (I think Mark mastered one of Alastair’s albums a few years back?). We’ll look for you! Best wishes for a wonderful 2014.

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