THE PIONEER by FREDERICK McCUBBIN
The first two parts of the painting remind me of Laura Ingalls Wilder, in Little House in the Big Woods. [Although, “The Pioneer is a 1904 painting by the Australian artist Frederick McCubbin. The painting is a triptych; the three panels tell a story of a free selector and his family making a life in the Australian bush. It is widely considered “one of the masterpieces of Australian art.” “]
As a young girl, I loved reading the Laura Ingalls Wilder stories. On my family’s farm, I would escape chores and read in the fields. Reading her stories, transported me back in time to the simple, yet fun, life of a farm girl. I imagined myself crossing the prairie from Wisconsin to South Dakota, having oxen and my sisters for friends. I often pretended my sisters were Mary and Carrie Ingalls. Recently, I discovered a cute blog, modeled after Caroline Ingalls, the mother of Laura Ingalls Wilder. It’s called, Wide Open Spaces, and the author, Emily, put it beautifully, “I read. And as I opened Little House in the Big Woods, I no longer felt lonely or bored or unfortunate to live in the country. I felt blessed. In the pages of the Little house series, I found a friend and a heroine Laura Ingalls Wilder. Her simple life, work ethic, and innocent pleasures transported me from my ranch house to her homestead. I was caught up in all the activities of the Ingallses’ everyday life: Ma making pie, Pa working a harvest, Laura studying for her teaching certificate, everyone drinking lemonade and watching the buggy races on independence day.“
What was your favorite Laura Ingalls Wilder book? If you haven’t read the series, read them and satisfy your inner little girl!