Read Along With TV’s Nellie Alison Arngrim

Alison Arngrim (Nellie Oleson) and Sarah Uthoff (Sarah Uthoff)
Alison Arngrim (Nellie Oleson) and Sarah Uthoff (Sarah Uthoff)

As part of her continuing efforts to spread peace and good cheer (check out her really positive Facebook video show), actress Alison Arngrim has launched a campaign to read the “Little House” series. Every day (weekdays and weekends) she makes a Facebook live session on her Facebook page reading one of the books in the series. She reads a couple of chapters everyday as many as she feels like. Most days it’s at 1 PM and 1:30 PM. Arngrim leaves prior readings on her page so you can catch up.

Arngrim reads the book and makes comments from her perspective as a modern day Californian. Many of those comments are hilarious, but some of them are warnings that things in the book wouldn’t meet today’s expectations. Every day Arngrim wears another bonnet of a different color. You can buy a signed bonnet from her.

During the sessions chat is available and it’s drawing people from all over the country and some foreign countries. Lots of questions and answers go by during the readings. So check her out. Read more in this article from Forbes magazine.

Sarah S. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many times at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. She is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales fighting to bring the History, Mystery, Magic, and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. How can you help? Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos,   listen to her podcast,    look at her photos, and find her on Facebook ,   Twitter ,   LinkedIn ,   SlideShare,   and Academia.edu . Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and former director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.

Family Circle is Closing Up Shop

Covers of some of the Seven Sisters

Rose Wilder Lane was once one of the stars of magazine culture. Today people don’t really understand the heyday of women’s magazines. They used to be a monthly summary of culture, featuring homemaking tips, children’s issues, health, beauty, fashion, crafts, recipes, and short stories, and foreign travel. They were in short a summing up of women’s everyday culture. Rose wrote articles herself that hit all of these topics.

For most of the 20th century the “seven sisters” of women’s magazines included Ladies’ Home JournalMcCall’sGood HousekeepingBetter Homes and GardensWoman’s Day, Family Circle and Redbook.

McCall’s Magazine

McCall’s Magazine started off in 1870 as a magazine called The Queen. It’s main purpose was to print and sell McCall’s sewing patterns. James McCall died in 1884 and his wife, Laura S., redesigned the magazine, greatly expanded its scope, and hired a female editor. (With a name like Laura, she had to be good.) It was a great sucess for decades leading the way for women’s culture. Thanks to Melissa Southworth for hunting up this article about McCall’s that nailed down her name. Honestly, it said “his wife” in every article in my first swoop hunt and she found it in Ancestry.

Everything is Rosie

Sadly as women began to get those needs to be met online the subscription base began to fall off. Desperate times call for desperate measures and in desperation they dropped the name McCall’s (after 103 years) to change it to a magazine completely dedicated to Rosie O’Donnell in 2000. O’Donnell had followed up a successful run in movies with a VERY popular TV talk show. I think a lot of people liked it because she seemed so much like an everyday person who got to talk to celebrities, did crafts, and developed running gags like her “crush” on Tom Cruise. (She pushed a button every time he was mentioned and it played the quick cut “Tommy can you hear me?”) This was the top of her game, her TV show was a hit and she even had a doll. McCall’s parent company felt she could bring her magic there. Unfortunately the magic had just about run out.

O’Donnell’s run as editor of the magazine was very argumentative. They quickly fought for control and by 2002 O’Donnell was done. The magazine’s final issue came out in December 2002. The lawsuits took awhile longer to settle. She ended her talk show that year too and pulled back to a less public life after a very disruptive final couple of years which began with an attack on Tom Selleck for his position with the NRA when he appeared on the show to promote a movie in 1999.

So the lesson here for those paying attention is that grabbing on to a current celebrity to save a magazine doesn’t work. However, that would be news to the owners of Family Circle.

Family Circle

Another leader in the women’s magazine field, Family Circle, was first published in 1932. It continued publication through the end of December 2019. Family Circle was actually in better shape than McCalls has been as the “sisters” fell and that concentrated subscriptions on the remaining titles. The Meredith company acquired Time, Inc. and has been rearranging its holdings and sold some. Family Circle was viewed as duplicating other titles it owned.

Brothers Can You Spare an Issue?

So Meredith is turning Family Circle over to not just one, but TWO celebrities, The Property Brothers. So the brothers are going to now have a magazine dedicated to them. This version will publish 4 times a years and sounds like it will cover a lot of the same exact territory as Family Circle, but with a celebrity spin. They are calling it Reveal.

While the glamour has faded quite a bit, I can’t give up on magazines. I actually hope that since the decision has been made it works enough to keep it going. HOWEVER, I think Meredith should have taken a closer look at McCall’s and Rosie before they made this switch. Good luck Property Brothers!

Sarah S. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many times at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. She is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales fighting to bring the History, Mystery, Magic, and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. How can you help? Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos,   listen to her podcast,    look at her photos, and find her on Facebook ,   Twitter ,   LinkedIn ,   SlideShare,   and Academia.edu . Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and former director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.

Audible Book Requests

When in doubt, it’s ALWAYS better to go to a library and many – not ALL, not to over promise – have databases of online audiobooks. However, I have a rewards banking  program where I have to make a series of at least $10 purchases in a month so I use one on Audible.

Screen shot from Audible

Audible

Audible is a company that sells you the ability to download audiobooks that you can then download to your various devices through their app.

I enjoy listening to a lot of them and quite a few are the very versions of older books that I listened to back when my local library used to have a lot of audio cassettes and CDs – Le Sigh! In fact, one of my current listens, Fer-de-lance by Rex Stout, wasn’t edited properly and it still periodically is saying “Cassette 4, side 1” or whatever one it is just like they used to do. This is the only one I’ve hit that does that, but I am very much enjoying it.

Other Titles

Audible has quite a few titles and adds more every month. However, they don’t have everything and there are lots of titles they don’t have. They have an option to correct that.

If you’re interested in a particular author or title, email them at content-requests@audible.com.

I’d suggest that we might suggest some more Laura Ingalls Wilder titles (click the link for a complete list of what they already have). Some of these are foreign language, others are just articles, or extremely short grabs. However, there are a lot of good books here, too.

Let’s reach out and ask for more Laura books!

Sarah S. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many times at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. She is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales fighting to bring the History, Mystery, Magic, and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. How can you help? Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos,   listen to her podcast,    look at her photos, and find her on Facebook ,   Twitter ,   LinkedIn ,   SlideShare,   and Academia.edu . Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and former director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.

Listen to Thornton Burgess and the Residents of the Green Forest and the Green Meadow

Every year for Read Aloud Day I read something that is out copyright protection. The last couple of years I’ve been reading from Thornton Burgess books.

Who Was Thornton Burgess?

Burgess was a naturalist who wrote a column for children about wildlife. His stories were about humanized wild animals. They wear clothes and talk, but otherwise act as the real animals do. His stories were set in the Green Meadows and the Green Forest. Since they were originally written in a column each chapter begins with a recap and ends on a cliff hanger which makes them excellent for reading a chapter aloud. Also, they are perfect early reader (around 2nd grade) books.

Read Aloud Selections

Today the Thornton Burgess Green Briar Nature Center & Jam Kitchen continues his work helping children discover the joy of nature. Personally I learned to love his books on the recommendation of Iowa City Public Library’s long term (40 years) children’s librarian, Hazel Westgate. I’ve done other things in honor of World Read Aloud Day including how they celebrated Easter in Gene Stratton-Porter‘s near biographical Laddie: A True Blue Story, a part of Millbank the only novel mentioned in the “Little House” books, the Great Auk section of “Pa’s Big Green Animal Book,”and one-room school readers.

Listen to the Bedtime Stories

Lately I’ve done several episodes on reading Thornton’s adventures of the little folks of the Green Meadows and the Green Forest.

The Adventures of Grandfather Frog the first 30 minutes

Old Mother West Wind is actually a collection of short stories so it doesn’t do the chapter recap and tease the next chapter. In 2019 I was working on testing microphones and I read the stories in roughly 10 minute chunks.

Mother West Wind’s Children Part 1

Mother West Wind’s Children Part 2

Mother West Wind’s Children Part 3

Mother West Wind’s Children Part 4

On World Read Aloud Day 2020 I picked back up Mother West Wind’s Children and read two more stories. Next year I may pick something else or I may return to this, but for now enjoy a 30 minute version.

Mother West Wind’s Children Part 5

Sarah S. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many times at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. She is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales fighting to bring the History, Mystery, Magic, and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. How can you help? Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos,   listen to her podcast,    look at her photos, and find her on Facebook ,   Twitter ,   LinkedIn ,   SlideShare,   and Academia.edu . Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and former director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.

L.M. Montgomery Links

L.M. Montgomery is the brilliant Canadian author behind books like the Anne of Green Gables series and The Blue Castle. I find Montgomery to be a true Kindred Spirit.

L.M. Montgomery Shelf

The Shining Scroll – This scholarly publication began in 1992 and is the main source of Montgomery research.

Benjamin Lefebvre – Is one of the leading Montgomery scholars. His website gives great descriptions of outcoming books.

Destination Green Gables – A short blog from 2014-2015 However, it’s got a great gathering of photos from the Anne of Green Gables Museum. Find her main blog in Polish.

L.M. Montgomery Online – A website devoted to the life, the work, and the legacy of Canada’s most enduringly popular author. “Whether you are an academic, a student, or a life-long reader of Montgomery’s work, I hope this resource will prove useful to you.”

UPDATED: January 30, 2020

Sarah S. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many times at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. She is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales fighting to bring the History, Mystery, Magic, and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. How can you help? Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos,  listen to her podcast,   look at her photos, and find her on Facebook ,  Twitter ,  LinkedIn ,   SlideShare,   and Academia.edu . Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and former director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.

Looking for Anne in PEI

I had this video pop up in my feed. It’s dated 2020 because of when the video was put together. The photos were taken between 2015-2019.

I wanted to share out this view of Prince Edward Island. PEI is well-known by readers of Anne of Green Gables, Emily of New Moon, and other books by L.M. Montgomery. The video is made from a series of still photos of the Montgomery sites, big and little, in PEI. The same channel has a longer video from 2015, but it’s also just still photos set to music.

This video came through this feed and I don’t know anything about the channel. I have since found out it was done by Bernadeta Milewski. I’ve since found out about her since I first published this. Find her on Twitter under Bernadeta Milewski @@Bernadeta555 on Twitter.

The video does have a nice collection of photos of a tour around Prince Edward Island I assume by the person whose channel it is. The song is from the Sullivan productions and has a song credit, but I’m not sure it was used by legitimate permission or not.

The photos are from a variety of the Montgomery sites around Prince Edward Island. The ones included I’ve listed below:

  • Green Gables Heritage Place
  • Anne’s Bedroom
  • Lover’s Lane
  • Haunted Woods
  • Avonlea Place
  • Cavendish United Church
  • Green Gables Post Office
  • L.M Montgomery Cavendish Homestead
  • PEI National Park
  • Lucy Maud Montgomery Birthplace
  • New London Range Rear Lighthouse
  • Cape Tryon Light
  • Ingleside
  • Anne of Green Gables Park Corner
  • The Lake of Shining Waters
  • New Moon
  • Bideford Parsonage Museum
  • Lower Bedeque Schoolhouse

UPDATED: January 30, 2020

The video’s creator reached out to me on Twitter and I added her information and her Twitter handle. She caught a couple of mistakes on my list. I think it’s correct now. If anyone notices any problems let me know. She also does the Destination Green Gables blog I have on my L.M. Montgomery Links page.

Sarah S. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many times at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. She is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales fighting to bring the History, Mystery, Magic, and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. How can you help? Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos,  listen to her podcast,   look at her photos, and find her on Facebook ,  Twitter ,  LinkedIn ,   SlideShare,   and Academia.edu . Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and former director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.

 

New Years Trivia Game

The answer to each question begins with “NEW.” The answers are below. I took it from (except for replacing number 1) the January 1964 issue of the Johnson County (Iowa) Farm Bureau Women’s Newsletter.

Foot prints from Plum Creek Card

What’s the word or phrase that starts with new?

1. Type of fig cookie

2. A boy who sells papers

3. The large U.S. City

4. Recent tidings

5. Post at foot of stairway

6. A gossip

7. One who has recently arrived

8. Second half of the Bible

9. A large shaggy breed of dog

10. Collective name given to a group of States

11. The greatest natural philosopher

12. A city in western Pennsylvania (clue: think coals to )

13. FDR Adminitration

14. The Western Hemisphere

15. A state of southeastern Australia

16. A province of Canada

17. A state in southwestern U.S.

18. A city of Louisiana

19. Bulletin issued by an organization

20. A city and naval base in Virginia

ANSWERS:

1. Fig Newton
2. Newsboy
3. New York
4. News
5. Newel
6. News-monger
7. Newcomer
8. New Testament
9. Newfoundland
10. New England
11. Newton (Sir Issac)
12. New Castle
13. New Deal
14. New World
15. New South Wales
16. New Brunswick
17. New Mexico
18. New Orleans
19. Newsletter
20. Newport News