Jane Roper

Writer. Blogger. Hater of Olives.

Follow The Yellow Brick Free Stuff!


I’m writing this post while we’re watching The Wizard of Oz, so forgive me if I sit and think some more accidentally insert words if I only had a brain from the movie into what I’m writing.  It’s a perfect movie day, really — a rainy Saturday, Clio on steroids and not feeling well, Elsa recovering from a sleepover, and me with some sort of virus myself because I can’t think. Won’t you take me with you?

Apples! Oh, look!

OK, OK, I’ll stop.

So. These treatment rounds of Clio’s always, strangely, take me by surprise. I mean, they shouldn’t. I guess it’s just that they’re so much easier than they were last year when she was on high-dose steroids and more chemo that I forget how difficult even this year’s lower-key treatment weeks kinda are, for her and for all of us. Poor kid came home last night at 9:00 from her first ever sleepover party because she just wanted to sleep in her own bed. (Fortunately, Alastair and I still got to finish our dinner out! Ha!)

And this week’s treatment actually kicked off in a pretty fun way: On Wednesday, all four of us went to the clinic, where Alastair played music in the waiting room, along with his producer / collaborator / frequent side-guy Anand. (See pic above, and see a quick video, including crazy kooky dancing from Clio, over on my Facebook page.) There wasn’t a big crowd, but the folks who were there enjoyed it.

Last week was also — because it was April vacation — sibling week at the clinic (how cool is that, right?), so they had a special session for siblings, with food and activities, which Elsa enjoyed. Several of the families we’ve gotten to know a bit happened to be at the clinic too, and it was nice to see them and catch up, compare notes.

As one of the many wonderful people I’ve met on this crappy little boat trip once put it, “Cancer is the worst. But you meet the best people.” Amen.

Now. Time to give away some free stuff! If you are interested in any or all of these, please leave a comment in which you  1.) Specify which items you’re interested by number (1, 2, and/or 3)   2.) Use your real email address in the form where it asks for your email, so I can contact you if you win  3.) Write something about the Wizard of Oz — a favorite part, associated memory, etc.  (You don’t actually have to do #3, but wouldn’t it be fun?)

Entries close at midnight on Tuesday, April 29. I’ll contact you to let you know if you’ve won any of these fabulous prizes!

1.  A copy of Labor Day: True Birth Stories by Today’s Best Woman Writers.


I do not by any stretch consider myself one of today’s best woman writers (in fact, I think the subhead is a little silly, but it was the publisher’s choice) BUT I’m really happy to be a part of this fantastic anthology of true birth stories, edited by Anna Solomon and Eleanor Henderson. Other contributors include Julia Glass, Cheryl Strayed, Lan Samantha Chang, Heidi Pitlor and Jennifer Gilmore. It’s a great gift for new or expectant moms, or pretty much anyone.

2.  A pair of tickets to Labor Day — the live storytelling / reading version — at Oberon in Cambridge, MA. Tuesday, May 6 at 7:00 pm. A sure to be fun evening,  featuring  yours truly and several other contributors to Labor Day, telling our birth stories, hosted by WBUR’s Carey Goldberg and kicking off with a standup set by comic Robin Maxfield. (The venue is super cool, too!)   More details here.  



3.  A copy of Julia Fierro’s debut novel, Cutting Teeth.

I had the pleasure of reading an advance copy of this novel about a group of Brooklyn parents and their young children on a weekend beach getaway. It’s at once abookgreat send-up of a certain sort of hyper-conscious, well-to-do urban parent (you know who I’m talking about), and a sincere exploration of the emotional and personal complexities of becoming a parent — and hanging out with other parents. Booklist says, ““Fierro’s first novel captures the complexity of forging new friendships and redefining lives as contemporary parents. Her characters are meticulously drawn, the situations emotionally charged. Readers, especially young parents, won’t be able to look away.”


So, leave your comment and which offer(s) you’re interested if you want to win! And remember: There’s no place like home.



  1. I want #1 Please!!! Maybe even sign it for me!

    Best part of the Wizard of Oz is the ruby slippers because everything is better with sparkle!!!!

  2. I’d like number 3. The best part of The Wizard of Oz is that it inspire Wicked!

  3. I’d love to win #1! Although would be more than happy with #3 as well.

  4. Thank you for the giveaway. I am interested in 1 and 3. I remember how excited I was to watch The Wizard of Oz on TV with my mom back when we had no cable or even VCR.

  5. yay! I’m interested in 1 and 3. Too far for #2.

  6. #3 then #1. I love the Wizard of Oz, and my girls do too. My older daughter went dressed as Dorothy on Halloween last year. She was also in a musical theater production of the Wizard of Oz in kindergarten.

  7. I would love #1 for your story and to share with a friend who’s due in 5 weeks, and #3, definitely.

    My favorite memory of the Wizard of Oz was watching it for the first time with my sister on our huge screen projection TV when I was six. I really, really didn’t want to see the witch under the house, but mean big sister Lisa kept switching the channel back and managed to catch it just as the witch’s feet (enormous, huge, and gigantic on our giant screen) shriveled up under the house. Scarred me for life, as you can see.

  8. I’d like 1 or 3 (we live too far away for 2).

    I recently took my 4 year-old twins to a Wizard of Oz exhibit in Kansas City. They’ve never seen it, and I was describing the movie the night before we went to the exhibit so they’d “get it.” While I was describing it, I began to realize that there are some pretty scary parts of that movie, but I kind of glossed over them. So the boys were pretty unprepared when the first part of the exhibit was a realistic castle with a witch inside who cackled!! This was not the most popular outing I’ve ever taken the guys on. Oh well,maybe they’ll appreciate it in a few years.

  9. I would love #1 or #3. I would look forward to the yearly showing of the Wizard of Oz (pre-cable and VCR) all year. I would refuse to leave the living room when it was on, even during the commercials. Also my Mom was born in 1939 and her older sister was allowed to name her. And my aunt chose Judy after Judy Garland! I always felt like I had an extra special connection to the movie for that reason. And I of course loved all the Oz books!

  10. I would love to win either 1 or 3–I couldn’t swing 2, unfortunately. My favorite thing about the Wizard of Oz is Judy Garland’s voice. Love, love, love to hear her sing.

  11. #3! I cry when I watch Over the rainbow and I liked the book!

  12. I will sign up for one and three (since I wouldn’t be able to get to two).

    When my dad was visiting last month he agreed to fill in answers to questions I’d written out for him in a blank journal (things like: “What was your first date?” “Who was your favorite teacher?” “What do you regret?” etc.) and under “Favorite Movies” he surprised me by including The Wizard of Oz. I honestly never would have guessed and was glad I’d asked.

  13. Would love #1! And the best thing about the Wizard of Oz is the gold standard analogy…

  14. Number #3 sounds like a great summer read! I would love to win that one.

    My favorite story is taking my students to see the real ruby slippers at the National Museum of American History. They are so perfect and shiny in real life! Did you know that the original version of the story had silver slippers, but the movie directors shooting in high-tech color thought red stood out better against the yellow brick road?

  15. I would love #1 or #3 (I’d love #2 as well but live too far away).

    Someday I will think about The Wizard of Oz and not be freaked out by the flying monkeys. Today is not that day.

  16. 1 or 3! I love your writing; thank you for sharing with us. Wizard of Oz: I just love the lion. Always have. Also, the witch totally scared me as a child and thinking of her cackle still creeps me out.

  17. I want number 1 or 2. The second may be hard to depend as it will depend on my 3 month olds schedule for the day and when she goes down for the night. So as much as I’d love to attend the live readings I can read the book at my own pace. I would love to share my own recent birth story with you one day.
    The wizard of oz is a classic! Can’t wait to share it with my daughter one day. I hope she isn’t terrified of the witch’s monkeys like I was growing up. The whole “oh oh, oh we oh,” chant still freaks me out a bit when I watch it. My favorite is Glinda, the good witch. I’ve always loved how she traveled by a bubble. How cool is that?

  18. Wow- cool giveaways! I’d love #1 and #3. My favorite memory of the Wizard of Oz was attending a sing-a-long version at the Regent Theater with 3-year-old Evie (dressed in a Dorothy costume) and my dad (not in costume). All three of us belted out the words to every song!

  19. 1 or 2
    When I was first inpatient at Children’s Hospital Boston in 1996 after being diagnosed with aplastic anemia, my roommate LOVED The Wizard of Oz. I was 4 and an easily frightened child and was terrified of it, so when she wanted to watch it (which was frequently) we’d pull the curtains and put on a Winnie-the-Pooh tape. I am 22 now and I don’t think I’ve ever watched the movie all the way through – need to get to that at some point.

  20. #3 Julia Fierro’s Cutting Teeth

    Jane, after reading your account above, I feel like the Tin Man: I just won my heart. Keep writing heartily and bravely!

  21. I would like#1,3. 2 is too far. I love the part in the movie where it changes to color from black and white.

  22. My favorite memories are of my girls watching the movie over and over and over and acting out all of the parts. I have a video of my little brunette being the wicked witch but I can’t find the link – too bad – it’s hysterical how at 3 she knows all of the witch’s lines. My twins dressing up as Dorothy and Glinda daily just to hang out around the house. At 4, my oldest, not featured here, always said that the Wicked Witch wasn’t bad – she was just misunderstood. She is going to love reading Wicked.
    Here’s a video of my little ones singing/dancing like munchkins. Makes me laugh and maybe it’ll make you laugh too
    As for the giveaway, I’m torn between # 1 and #3 🙂
    Love the video of Clio dancing – kids are so funny dancing/rolling all over the floor. I love it!

  23. I would like #1 and #3 (live a bit too far away for #2).

    I don’t remember when it started, but hearing ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow’ has always made me cry in a good ‘feeling too much’ kind of way. That’s the part of the movie that I most love!

    Love your blog!

  24. #1 and #3! And my kid received a flying monkey stuffed animal as a gift when he was a baby and it is SO CREEPY. ps, who exactly sees a flying monkey stuffed animal and thinks, “Aw, what a cute baby gift!”???? Though, the kid is 4 now and it gets a lot of use now as the villain defeated by his superhero toys…

  25. #3 please! Dorothy’s glittering red slippers are so iconic- and what better icon than red glitter heels?

  26. 1or 3 would be perfect.ruby red slippers just click them!,

  27. I’d love 3 please!!

  28. #2, please! How fun! “Ooh, that smell of sulfur!” 🙂

  29. A copy of Julia Fierro’s debut novel, Cutting Teeth been on my wishlist for a long time!!!

  30. hi! i am a new-ish mom of twins (just turned 1!) — your blog and “double time” have been invaluable companions!

    I would love to win #3 !

    three things pop into my mind when i hear Wizard of Oz:
    1. (mean, but the immediate association is) Mrs. Lovetz, my algebra II teacher.. who had an uncanny resemblance to the wicked witch’s helper monkies.
    2. a nicer thing to say, after Mrs. Lovetz, I think of the big poppy fields they fall asleep in.
    3. and as soon as I check those two mental references, my mind goes to the Wiz, and I get the song, “ease on down the road” in my head.

    those three things. every time.

  31. Its such as you read my mind! You appear to understand so much approximately this, like you wrote the e book in it or something. I believe that you just can do with some p.c. to drive the message house a little bit, but other than that, this is fantastic blog. A fantastic read. I will certainly be back.

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