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Monday, July 5, 2010

VICTORIA--Past Pages


I first met Victoria in the wilderness of my life when I lived for two years with my family on a few acres of undeveloped land in New Mexico in the late 80's. During THAT recession we had suffered a reversal of fortune (as it is so poetically phrased), and had retreated to a piece of ground that we owned, and which felt to me like a godforsaken place.




My husband hated me using that phrase. But I could feel my brain alter and my cells morph beneath the unrelenting desert sun. We were eight miles from a tiny town and "convenience" store, and forty-five miles from the city. My soul swelled up with the soreness that comes from trial, hardship, and isolation. I watched myself change, the way you observe a pregnancy changing you physically, a little at a time, and you know that you will never be the same again.




How wise a choice it was for city people to start over like pioneers I can't say. We lived too far from the highway to afford phone lines. Our nearest neighbor, a stranger, was a quarter mile away. Our large family occupied a single-wide mobile home that I have since joked was like living in a major appliance! We only went without electricity for a week. Without running water for a year. Mary Jane Butters would be so proud of me! (Be sure to look her up if you haven't heard of her.)



While the rest of the family would leave in the early morning, my trailing toddler and I would take care of business at home. Once each day we took the two mile round trip pilgrimage to the post office. Letters were my social life, and there was often one from a good friend or family member. Some form of joy usually arrived in the daily mail. Enter Victoria Magazine!




Like everyone else, I first found the publication on the newsstand. Thereafter, it arrived like manna from heaven. I would squirrel away in a soft corner and savor each phrase of text, pore over each beautiful photograph. I'm sure this is where I developed the habit of reading a magazine from first page to last without EVER peeking ahead until it was finished. When the magazine went away it was like losing an old and true friend.




The wilderness days were long past when Victoria stopped publication. I got on line and acquired every missing issue of my collection. I now carry the resurrected version of Victoria in my vintage shop, and am so happy to have it back! I have rows and stacks of issues around my home. I would no more think of throwing them out than I would a long lost friend.





Thanks so much for stopping by my little corner of the world! Ciao! for now!

Jacqueline

I've joined Kathy at A Delightsome Life for her first
Victoria--A Return to Loveliness blog party! I hope you will too!


18 comments:

MARY PERNULA said...

I to am glad Victoria magazine is back. I have issues as far back as ealy 90's. I will continue to enjoy them for years to come. XO MARY

Doni said...

Jacqueline, I loved your post. You phrased your life at that point so perfectly I had to get a glass of water!!! (just kidding),
But seriously, I was in a similar spot doing the same thing! San Antonio, singlewide mobile home, RATS...yes...rats, and my 2 sons. Fear, loneliness and no hope. But the Victoria Magazines were there...my old ones. The ones I STILL HAVE and pour over like old letters. I also get the new ones now, but they just aren't the same...not quite as wonderful to me. Maybe it was the dry lonely times that made the magazine seems so much better, but like you, I will never give them up. Thanks for the reminder and now I'm on my way over to the party. Hope you have a blessed week!
Doni

Cindy said...

Hi Jaqueline,
Just came across your blog for the first time tonight. Thank you for the lovely images from "Victoria". I remember discovering my first issue years ago and the feeling of wanting to enter the pages and live amongst the beauty! I still cherish my old issues as well. Glad to have found your blog!

Kathy said...

Jacqueline! What a story! So well written. What a blessing how Victoria brought moments of delight for you during that time of your life. I thought in some sense of the movie, "Out of Africa" the affect life had on the heroine of that story. You are the heroine of your story! You transported me, gave me a vision of yourself and your life! I am sure Nancy Lindemeyer, the photographers and the writers would appreciate how they brought joy to your life. I truly appreciate you sharing. Looking forward to next week!
God Bless

awal.ny said...

I am glad you survived your appliance living, not too many could have. I too love Victoria magazine, I discovered it in an antique shop and I kept every volume I could find and I still like to go and look at back issues.

Lavender Cottage said...

Very interesting to hear how Victoria came into your life. I didn't put this in my post but I used to work in a grocery store with a huge magazine section that I stocked and maintained and the day I opened a Victoria magazine, I was hooked.
Reminds us to add some feminine and romantic touches into our lives and homes.
Judith

Donna said...

Hi Jaqueline,
Wow! I am sure that you were much better at "roughing it" than I would've been! While I grew up on a farm and am still a farm girl at heart, I love my conveniences, like running water! I have always loved Victoria magazine, too! I don't receive it now, just Romantic Homes magazine, though I think the older RH was better than the current issues! Have a great day!

Chrissy said...

I agree with you,loved it then love it now,but I must confess Jeanne D'arc is my favorite at the moment,have you seen it? Love this post,all the best Chrissy

Sweet Bee Cottage said...

What a story! Such a simple thing can bring us so much joy.

nannykim said...

Well, I had to smile at your story. You had some tough times. I laughed at how you described living in a mobile home (like living in an appliance). We suffered during that recession also and we had to live with my hubby's family for a while! It changes how you view things, for sure!

Creative Grammie said...

You write of your experience so eloguently! I know exactly what you mean about Victoria magazine. I too would turn everyone off and read this favorite friend of mine from cover to cover, never wanting it to end. I would renew 2 years at a time,then that awful envelope came one day in the mail; talk about devastation! When Victoria returned, I refused to renew,(rebellious big baby), and now buy just the ones I'm most interested in reading.
Enjoy the rest of your week!

Brenda@Cozy Little House said...

Ironically enough, I just picked up the latest issue from the grocery store today. I'm sending in my subscription form. I don't want to miss another issue either. I couldn't believe when they stopped publication. Thank goodness it's back! Such beauty and elegance inside its pretty pages!
Brenda

Bella said...

Hi Jacqueline.. Through adversity comes strength... and strength is always what i hear in your posts! Victoria magazine is the mother light that bound all us crazy bloggers together! I just picked up a big stack of back issues the other day (yes at a garage sale, whaere else?).
Bella

Angie @ Ranch Dressing said...

The story of living in a single wide resonates here too...6 years until we paid off our land and built our home...I couldn't wait to see that ratty old box hauled away off our property...and yes, the mail and my favorite magazine promised better days ahead. Hadn't thought about that in a while.

Cindy said...

Catching up while I am home for a night. Will be missing your posts for a week or so but will be sure to see all I miss when I return. I love the sweet dresses and the entire post.

Angie said...

I loved your post about Victoria Magazine. I found your blog through the party and love it too. I enjoy finding beautiful new blogs. You can check my Victoria party post at http://jsimplylive.blogspot.com/2010/07/victoria-magazine-blog-party-my-first.html Have a great day!

Yellow Rose Arbor said...

I enjoyed reading your post, even though I can't identify with your "wilderness" days, I felt the same about the Victoria magazine! I have many issues of the "old, or first, Victorias!"

I hope to participate in the Victoria reviews when we return from vacation!

Katherine

Nancy said...

Hi Jacqueline, I just came across your blog and have enjoyed "looking" through it's pages....this post is wonderful! I hope Victoria some how comes across this post, what a great story it would make for them to add to one of the issues. God Bless, Nancy

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