Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Two Little Girls

I came across this picture of my mother, taken in the early Twenties.  The fancy basket makes me think she could be dressed for a May Day celebration or perhaps she's going to be the flower girl in a wedding. 

There are quite a few pictures of her in similar get ups -- the high socks, the short frock, and the exuberant bow. It must have been a fairly common look at that time.

The Oz books were of that time and Dorothy wears a similar outfit.

I grew up reading the Oz books --  borrowing them from friends, the school library, and finally, getting my own -- which I still have.  Ozma of Oz is  probably my favorite of them all -- the sea voyage, Billina the talking hen (with her wonderful common sense,) the trees that grow lunch pails, and the exquisite (though not very nice) Princess Langwidere (languid dear) with her wardrobe of exchangeable heads.

The books are, in my opinion, far better than the famous movie which has always seemed just plain silly to me. (Except for the Witch and her Flying Monkeys!)

Time for some re-reads!

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24 comments:

estaminet said...

Thanks for the reminder of books that I loved so dearly! (And yes, the lunch pail trees...so, so charming. Didn't they each have a hard-boiled egg and a twist of paper with salt?) I haven't read them in years. Time to hit the Leicester Library again!

Joan said...

Books from childhood are like old friends. I love the pic of your Mother. The Japanese irises are gorgeous . I plan to plant some around my wee pool.

Martin H. said...

Would you believe, this is one that passed me by. Speckly Woo loves the film, but maybe I'll introduce her to the book.

By the way, 'The Book Thief' is now on my Kindle.

Star said...

I have never seen those books before Vicki. I didn't know of their existence. I have similar pics of my mother when she was a little girl. I must admit, I love that look. It's so feminine, isn't it.

GrandmaK said...

I have a picture of my dad in knee pants and it was taken about the same time. Daddy said he didn't get his 1st pair of "long pants" until he was about 8 or 9. Really a wonderful post. The rereads are so grand! The weather is perfect for these times! to hot to do much else! have a grand day! Cathy

June said...

I never even knew there was more to "Oz" than "The Wizard of..."!
My favorites were the Honey Bunch stories . . . my mother's collection from her own childhood.

Sam @ My Carolina Kitchen said...

What an adorable picture of your mother. Thanks for reminding us to re-read some of our favorites.
Sam

Brian Miller said...

you know, i knew of them but have not read the other books...maybe i will look for those this summer...

Barbara Rogers said...

Great to be reminded of Oz books. I just found the one remaining of my mother's and took a couple of pictures...of the cover and the frontpiece dedicated to "the children of our soldiers, Americans and Allies" from 1919 when it was published.

Vicki Lane said...

Yes, estaminet, and the leaves of the tree were paper napkins.

Speckly Woo is probably the right age -- these may be the sort of books that one needs to meet as a child. I'd be interested to know how today's children might respond to these almost century old books.

I think that most of the books are available as ebooks free from The Gutenberg Project -- I don't remember if they include the illustrations (which are really delightful.)

Mama-Bug said...

Those Oz books were wonderful when I was a kid; definitely need to read them again. I love the photo of your mom!

Darla said...

Delightful photo! And I loved your segue from that into the Oz books...which I've never read, but am now intrigued and may just have to! :-)

FOLKWAYS NOTEBOOK said...

Vicki -- What a sweet photo of your mother. I have a photo of a family member in much the same style of dress. Twas the fashion I'd say. -- barbara

Bouncin' Barb said...

What a priceless photo of your Mom. She was probably just a couple years older than my Mom who was born in 1925, but I have pics of her dressed similarly. I remember one of her having a huge bow in her hair on the side. That was a frill during the depression. Love the pic. Thanks!

NCmountainwoman said...

Great idea! I read them the summer before eighth grade which was quite a number of years ago. I've been doing quite a bit of re-reading this summer..."Jane Eyre," "A Tree Grows in Brooklyn," "Gone with the Wind," and now "Look Homeward, Angel." So comforting to read books you have loved.

JJM said...

That is definitely a sweet picture of your mother, Vicki. How lucky you are to have it!

GrandmaK said...: Daddy said he didn't get his 1st pair of "long pants" until he was about 8 or 9.

Of course, even earlier, there was another big transition for boys: when they graduated from skirts to pants at about the age of five. A lot of the very young children you see wearing dresses in 19th century photographs (and even later) are actually boys. For one thing, it was so much easier to deal with diapers that way ... How times change! --Mario

Susan M. Bell said...

I've never read the Oz books. I will try to remedy that this year and read at least the first one of the series. I used to love the movie, and yes, the witch with her flying monkeys was always my favorite part. :)

JJM said...

P.s. -- I agree the the 1939 Wizard of Oz is a silly film, although great fun in its own right. The 1985 Return to Oz comes much closer to the feel of the original books, and it's quite a bit darker than the Judy Garland version.

The 1985 film combines the second and third Oz books, making some changes along the way. It omits Tip altogether but features Billina, Jack Pumpkinhead, and the Gump. The wardrobe of interchangeable heads is here owned by Mombi rather than Langwidere. Even with the changes, though, I think it's worth watching. The Will Vinton claymation is wonderful.

JJM said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
jennyfreckles said...

I don't know those books. Sounds like I missed out! I love the photo of your mum with that HUGE bow atop her head! I used to wear bows too in the 1950s, but not that big.

Deanna said...

I've uncovered pictures of my mom in the same type get up. I am embarrassed to admit that I didn't know there were Oz books. I always thought it began and ended with the Wizard. Now I know. And now I will check it out!

Kath said...

Among my most treasured possessions are the OZ books as well as the Raggedy Ann and ANdy books from my parents' childhoods. The illustrations were as least as imagination firing as the text.
whole heartedly agree that the Oz books are far better than the wonderful classic movie.

Anonymous said...

Vicki, I enjoy all your posts. Thanks for your nice comment to Tipper on her sight and about Mary Lou. Mary Lou played in the Wizard of oz in 2003. You could tell she put her all in the play and was selected to carry the peacock feathure at the Peacock theatre in Hayesville, North Carolina.

Short Poems said...

What a beautiful picture of your mother. You have such a nice blog here, love it :)
Mother Poems