I liked the inclusion of Almanzo's boyhood story. I always found it fascinating how during his childhood, his family seemed quite prosperous, in comparison to Laura's and how in her childhood there were many hardships.
Also in comparing the books to the show, I know a lot of liberties were taken there, Eliza Jane in the books could be sometimes nasty (remember making Carrie rock the classroom bench), but in the show, she was for the most part rather nice. On the other hand, in the books what you see of Mrs. Oleson, she was nice, like when she gave Laura some books to read at Nellie's party, whereas in the show, well, you know. Then again, I'm not sure if Mrs. Oleson in the books was like Nellie, for that character was comprised of three different girls Laura knew growing up.