We have officially finished with the Little House on the Prairie series....just the other night I read the last page of The First Four Years. How weird will it be to not be reading about what Laura and Mary are doing? I offered to the girls that we could go on to read The Rose Years or the Caroline Years, and we purchased a book about Mary's time at the School for the Blind in Vinton, but for now we are taking a break. The same day we finished I received my newest issue of Oprah magazine in the mail. In it is an article by a woman who read the Little House series to her daughter. She and her daughter live in New York and are feeling the effects of the struggling economy. Laura and Mary were good models (as were the rest of the Ingalls') on how to get by on very little. I admit that when my girls complain I will often ask them if Mary and Laura acted like that? "Did Mary and Laura get to complain about what they had for supper?" "Did you realize that Mary and Laura didn't get dessert every night? An orange was a TREAT!" I am sure my girls are tired of me pointing out to them all the ways that Mary and Laura had things rougher than we do.
While I was reading the last book to them, I picked up Melissa Gilbert's memoir, Prairie Tale. I grew up watching Little House on TV, so Melissa Gilbert has been and will always be Laura to me. My expectations for a celebrity biography weren't very high. Seems I skim many celebrity bios. However, I was quite pleasantly surprised. Gilbert's book was interesting and well written. And as much as I know that there is more to Gilbert than her role as Laura, I really haven't tried to learn more about her. Her life is not the wholesome life Laura had- she has abused drugs and alcohol and has been divorced, but I did find her likeable. I also appreciate the fact that even though her role as Laura may be what many people remember her for, there are many other things Gilbert has done during her career as an actress.
For now we are done with our Little House obsession. We have just a month left of summer vacation and are still trying to decide when to take a trip to Walnut Grove, MN, to visit one Laura's homes. Maybe that will reignite a desire to read more books about the Ingalls.