Betty MacDonald fan club fans,
as we already know it's International Women's Day today.
I'm going to praise a very famous lady.
It's unique Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle.
Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle's Farm (1954) is my favourite book in Betty MacDonald's comic series about the expert child-curative Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle.
The series begins with Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle and continues with Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle's Magic and Hello, Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle.
None of the books can be considered novels, but episodic problems with children and their exasperated parents in Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle's neighbourhood, and the always winning solution provided by Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle.
Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle's Farm (illustrated by Maurice Sendak) has Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle move from her "upside-down house" to a farm, bought with her husband's pirate treasure found at the end of the last book.
Unlike that book, Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle uses no magic for her cures; the farm itself does the most good: fresh air, animals, and responsibility are what children seem to really need.
In 1996 Betty MacDonald's Family had been interviewed by Betty MacDonald fan club founder - author Wolfgang Hampel.
Especially Betty MacDonald's youngest sister Alison Bard Burnett had a perfect memory and told very funny stories about the original Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle Stories.
Alison Bard Burnett and her family has been mentioned in Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle's Magic.
Betty MacDonald fan club newsletter March will be available with many more info on 70th anniversary of The Egg and I, new fascinating info on Dorita Hess and a Betty MacDonald quiz.We are looking for signed or dedicated first editions in great condition with dust jackets by Betty MacDonald and Mary Bard Jensen for our fans.
Betty MacDonald Memorial Award Winner Wolfgang Hampel and Betty MacDonald fan club research team are working on an updated Betty MacDonald biography and new Betty MacDonald documentary.
Dearest new Betty MacDonald fan club fans you'll receive a very important message by Betty MacDonald fan club event team.
This message includes a very nice Betty MacDonald fan club surprise and many info on our current Betty MacDonald fan club projects.
Betty MacDonald fan club honor member Mr. Tigerli and our 'Italian Betty MacDonald' - Betty MacDonald fan club honor member author and artist Letizia Mancino belong to the most popular Betty MacDonald fan club teams in our history.
Their many devoted fans are waiting for a new Mr. Tigerli adventure.
Letizia Mancino's magical Betty MacDonald Gallery is a special gift for our Betty MacDonald fan club fans.
Don't miss Brad Craft's ' I've been lifted ', please.
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Wolfgang Hampel - Wikipedia ( English )
Wolfgang Hampel - Wikipedia ( English ) - The Egg and I
Wolfgang Hampel - Wikipedia ( German )
Wolfgang Hampel - Monica Sone - Wikipedia ( English )
Wolfgang Hampel - Ma and Pa Kettle - Wikipedia ( English )
Wolfgang Hampel - Ma and Pa Kettle - Wikipedia ( French )
Wolfgang Hampel in Florida State University
Betty MacDonald fan club founder Wolfgang Hampel
Betty MacDonald fan club interviews on CD/DVD
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Betty MacDonald fan club items - comments
Betty MacDonald fan club - The Stove and I
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Betty MacDonald fan club organizer Linde Lund
Childhood Memories: Betty MacDonald
Looking back on the books now, the town that Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle lived in was probably not a very endearing place, given that it was full of kids who each had one continuing fault. Granted, things have to be put on a spectrum; Melody Foxglove’s penchant for excessive crying, or Nicholas Semicolon’s bullying could both probably be considered more annoying than Harbin Quandrangle’s constant daydreaming, or Lee and Mimi Wharton’s persisting boredom. In fact, I still have my doubts whether or not Harbin’s or the Wharton siblings’ afflictions qualify as real faults warranting some sort of cure. I suppose also, as a child then myself, I should have been a little bit offended by her attempts to right many of the bad habits I had at the time, but I think most of that was masked by the fact that I was so happy to read a series of short stories bound into a chaptered book, Maybe even on some unconscious level, I always behaved better after reading.
In fact, some of the cures that Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle comes up with are thoroughly entertaining. To cure Fetlock Harroway of his compulsive lying, Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle’s collection of friendly farm animals assure him that there isn’t really a reason for Fetlock to lie and that he is a wonderful boy just the way he is. ‘The Radish Cure’ introduces us to Patsy Waters, who dislikes bathing. As such, Patsy’s mother Mrs. Waters is advised by Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle to leave Patsy alone for long enough that radishes can be planted on her to prove a point. I’ve always wondered about why MacDonald chose radishes as the vegetable to plant on Patsy—is it because they can be harvested quickly?
However, there is also a darker side to Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle’s various cures, so to speak. To cure Allen of taking super tiny bites in ‘The Slow-Eater-Tiny-Bite-Taker Cure,’ Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle presents his mother with a set of specially-made dishes made to serve smaller and smaller portions until Allen runs out of energy and loses the ability to function. Upon revisiting that particular story, I find myself slightly concerned that Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle is in a sense advocating starving Allen – even if only for a short amount of time. When Allen’s mother voices this concern, Mrs. Piggle Wiggle appears to be not very bothered, as if she’s absolutely sure that her remedy will work. The fact that it might not doesn’t seem to have registered. However, in the vein of Roald Dahl, who I still view as one of the most successful children’s storyteller of all time, no children’s tale is complete without a retrospective nugget or two to worry (or perhaps even intrigue) the parents.
In short, despite some slightly alarming realisations that have since become obvious to me as an adult reader, the Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle series is a charming gem for children, which quite accurately encapsulates growing up in idyllic 1950s America. This bit is particularly dear to me as someone who has grown up in a small-town environment. Acting both as a fun advice column and maybe additionally as slightly tongue-in-cheek cautionary tales for the young reader, the Mrs Piggle-Wiggle series is overall a gentle, motherly breeze from the past, and well worth a look.