As we read Anne of Green Gables for book club, we of course had to have an Anne of Green Gables tea. We drank actual tea but also needed to make raspberry cordial and definitely raspberry cordial not wine.
“But you can ask Diana to come over and spend the afternoon with you and have tea here.” “Oh, Marilla!” Anne clasped her hands. “How perfectly lovely!…Oh, Marilla, can I use the rosebud spray tea set?” “No, indeed! The rosebud tea set!…You’ll put down the old brown tea set. But you can open the little yellow crock of cherry preserves. It’s time it was being used anyhow—I believe it’s beginning to work. And you can cut some fruit cake and have some of the cookies and snaps.”
“I can just imagine myself sitting down at the head of the table and pouring out the tea,” said Anne, shutting her eyes ecstatically. “And asking Diana if she takes sugar! I know she doesn’t but of course I’ll ask her just as if I didn’t know. And then pressing her to take another piece of fruit cake and another helping of preserves. Oh, Marilla, it’s a wonderful sensation just to think of it. Can I take her into the spare room to lay off her hat when she comes? And then into the parlor to sit?”
“No. The sitting room will do for you and your company. But there’s a bottle half full of raspberry cordial that was left over from the church social the other night. It’s on the second shelf of the sitting-room closet and you and Diana can have it if you like, and a cooky to eat with it along in the afternoon…”
Anne of Green Gables (Anne of Green Gables #1) by L. M. Montgomery
I know I have already written a post on my love of Anne of Green Gables, but after my book club had reread Anne of Green Gables i wanted to write a post on why I recommend it as a Non-Austen Read for Austen Readers. I just realized we read the book about two years ago and I never got around to posting (you know me, I have 100s of drafts of posts I need to complete.)
I was looking for said draft when I discovered two older Anne of Green Gables drafts. I decided let’s clean house and combine all three.
Older owners of Green Gables, Matthew and Marilla Cutbert, have decided that in order to continue running their farm they need extra help. They decide to adopt an orphan boy, sending the message through the daughter of a friend. When Matthew goes to the station to pick him up, it turns out there was a serious miscommunication and they have a girl waiting.
Matthew takes her home, where Marilla is upset and determined to send her back. When she meets the woman who will take Anne instead, and sees how horrible she is, Marilla decides she will do her best to raise her.
Anne has had a hard life, her parents dying at a young age in poverty, then being shipped from family to family; mostly being used as a free baby-sitter than treated as a member of the family. She has spent a lot of her time alone or with children much younger than her, and has created habits that some, at that time, find strange. She has an extensive imagination, creates imaginary playmates, and when she does get with people just talks and talks and talks.
Marilla has no idea how to raise children, let alone this girl; so at first she tries to stop this behavior, but eventually it grows on her. Anne gets into all kinds of troubles, making mistakes as she transition from unwanted, uneducated, accident prone girl; to a confident, loved, intelligent, and wonderful woman.
I recommend this book for Austen fans as Anne Shirley is very similar to Fanny Price, Marianne Dashwood, Catherine Morland, and a little of Mr. Darcy. Like Fanny, Anne didn’t grow up as a member of the household in a regular way, often both girls were treated as higher than a servant but not a “real daughter”; that is until Fanny’s aunt and uncle see how much she means to them and is a part of their family; along with Anne finally finding a home in Green Gables.
Like Marianne and Catherine, Anne is a huge fan of reading and a romantic with an overactive imagination. She, like Marianne and Catherine, often has these romantic impulses get in the way of her common sense. Anne does many things, but her most “romantic impulse” is pretending to be The Lady of Shallot and almost drowning in a boat. Marianne also participated in many romantic notions and Catherine’s overactive imagination caused her to suspect Mr. Tilney’s father, General Tilney, of killing Mrs Tilney.
I know a lot of people compare Anne to Elizabeth because both have their pride wounded when they receive an insult about their appearance but to me I think Anne is more similar to Mr. Darcy as both’s temper would be described as:
A lot of people use the interaction between Anne and Gilbert, (him cracking a joke calling her carrots and she smacking him over the head with her slate and from that moment on thinking of him as an enemy)-to compare Anne and Elizabeth Bennet; and while I can see why they would do so I think you could use that same interaction to compare Anne to Marianne. Anne dreams of a romantic hero who is tall, dark, and handsome; Gilbert fits the bill but while it is obvious to us Anne can’t see it as all she has is her wounded pride. Marianne is just as prideful, choosing to dislike Colonel Brandon because Mrs. Jennings wanted to pair them up; and she is insulted that Mrs. Jennings would dare think to do such a thing for Marianne with someone so “old”. Even though Colonel Brandon fits Marianne’s idea of what a man should be, she can’t see past her own wounded pride.
One of my original posts was to share my view on a Bookriot article which compared Jane Austen characters to L. M Montgomery’s, as I disagree with the author. In the article it compared Gilbert to Mr. Knightley, but I don’t see Gilbert and Mr. Knightley being the most similar characters as Gilbert never tried to “help” improve Anne because no one else cared about her moral state. Unlike Emma, Anne had many adults ( Miss Stacy, Mrs. Lynda, Marilla, the pastor’s wife, Matthew, the Barrys, etc) who cared about encourahing her but also helping her grow into a fully developed person; so Anne’s love interest wouldn’t be one who would take on that role. Instead to me, Gilbert is more similar to a Jane Austen character that loves the girl and accepts her, and enjoys her silly qualities and romantic notions. I think a better comparison of Gilbert can be made to Mr. Darcy, (in the way he keeps loving her and tries his best to improve his character and hoping she will see it); but I would say Gilbert is much closer to Mr. Tilney or Colonel Brandon. Both Mr. Tilney and Gilbert have joking sides and are willing to be imaginative but not quite as much as Anne or Catherine. Both, while having these vibrant personalities also choose professions were they have to be a bit more serious; Gilbert with becoming a doctor and Tilney a minister. Both men encourage imagination to a point, realizing there has to be a cap such as Gilbert telling Anne that her boat ride as Eleanor wasn’t the best thought out plan; and Tilney warning Catherine to be wary of letting her thoughts run away with her as they could have serious consequences. Both men never try and change the woman they love but embrace her romantic side.
Gilbert and Colonel Brandon both have had great tragedies in their lives that caused their dreams to not come to fruition. Both are older than the women they fall for, but also encourage them and don’t want to crush their fantastical and imaginative sides; instead loving that about them.
Agree? Disagree? Let me know below.
Either way I strongly recommend this book and the other novels in the Anne of Green Gables series for Jane Austen fans.
There are Jane Austen’s works and numerous variations, but while those adapts are fun, sometimes you don’t always want to read the same story. You want Austen-like works, but something different. But what can you read instead?
That’s why I started this series. I will be reviewing books that have the things we love about the Austen novels, but are not another retelling.
Miss Abbott and the Doctor by Maripaz Villar
I started reading this comic in October of 2020 and always planned on writing a post on it but just never got around to it (that tends to happen a lot, unfortunately). Well no time better than the present, right?
The WEBTOON Miss Abbot and the Doctor is a lined only (not filled in) WEBTOON that is set in a pseudo-Victorian Era. The comic actually begins in the middle as the author/cartoonist originally only planned a few episodes on Deviant Art before fleshing it out and moving over to WEBTOON. But don’t worry, any questions regarding the back stories or what lead them to that point in the story, are all filled in as the main characters get closer and talk more about their past and what lead them here.
The story follows the adventures of Miss Cati Abbott and Dr. Andreas Marino. Cati’s parents went off to the Amazon in search of a society that spurned the influence of technology. They, and most of their group, ended up passing away with Cati being taken in and raised by a tribe there.
One day, widow and anthropologist, Kira Aquila-Salazar, was on an expedition to find and learn more about the Shuar people, but ended up falling ill. Cati found her, helped her, and the two become very good friends. Kira becomes Cati’s mentor and brings her home with her to learn more about their society.
Dr. Andreas Marino was raised in the city and after he finished his studies and was beginning to practice medicine, his grandfather decided to retire and asked him to take over his practice. Dr. Marino moves to the small town and clashes with several characters, mostly Miss Abbott, as he has strict ideas about behavior, character, and how a gentleman and lady should be.
At first he only had one friend, Sebastian Nero, who is his opposite as he has a very open nature and immediately makes friends with anyone he meets.
At first Dr. Marino and Miss Abbott do not get along as they have such contrasting personalities, but over time both balance each other as Cati opens up Dr. Marino to more adventure and less constraint and Dr. Marino helps Cati reign in her imagination and be a bit more levelheaded.
So why do I recommend this for Jane Austen fans? First of all, Cati reminds me a lot of a mix of Anne Shirley from Anne of Green Gables, Elizabeth Bennet from Pride and Prejudice, Marianne Dashwood from Sense and Sensibility, and Catherine Morland from Northanger Abbey. Cati is smart, witty, and send off a great barb, strong, athletic and knows how to take care of herself and others. She is also a bit naive, can be judgmental, and has an overactive imagination that does tend to cause her to either get carried away or try and do something without thinking it through.
She learns from both her mentor Kira, friend Rebecca, and eventual love interest Dr. Marino; to not get rid of the things that make her special but to temper her imagination and to think things through more.
Dr. Marino reminds me of Mr. Darcy with a mix of Gilbert Blythe. When he first comes to the town he has some preconceived notions about the townspeople, having grown up in the city, and isn’t as warm or open to people as he could be.
Over time those walls are broken down, primarily with his relationship with Miss Abbott as she points out his faults, he tries to correct them, and he learns to let go and go along with some of her fun and eccentric ideas.
I believe that the author loves Jane Austen too, particularly after reading this little scene.
When I first read this series, almost all were free episodes until after the wedding (above image). However, now only the first 18 episodes are free with the rest being a daily pass; one free a day unless you would like to pay three coins an episode. It can be a little hard trying to wait every day to read the next episode, but if you are willing to wait it out I don’t think you will be disappointed.
You can read the series by going to the WEBTOON app or going to the WEBTOON website.
So I had to take a break from finishing my review of Modesto Jane Con, as we had Valentine’s Day posts and some other things, but now I am ready to finish reviewing Modesto Jane Con.
So if you have been following me on social media, you know I have been super excited about Modesto Jane Con. The past eight years I have seen pictures from different Jane Cons and festivals and wished I could go-but they were not possible for me to attend as it always came down to a problem of time, money, work, etc. Instead I had to be content with seeing pictures on social media.
But then Modesto Jane Con was created!
From January 10th-12th there were all kinds of workshops, activities, movies, an opera, and even a fashion show!
Your $30 ticket allowed you to attend the workshops (BOTH DAYS) and see one showing of Mansfield Park Opera (your choice of Saturday or Sunday).
That was it, I was going! And I convinced my book club + my sister to join me. I scrounged around for a costume (I’ll post on that later) and made sure to bring a notebook to take copious notes on the workshop and opera to-of course post on them later (as I am now).
So after Dressing the Regency Lady, we had about an hour and fifteen mins before the Mansfield Park Opera pre-show talk by Hillari DeSchane. We checked out a few things and had lunch, and then headed to the Opera.
The building was really cool as it was a classic theater showing old, foreign, & independent films that also hosts concerts & events. It has a snack bar that serves popcorn, wine, soft drinks, and espresso. I really wanted tea, but it didn’t serve any. Oh, well…
So quick review of the book, for those of you who might not have read it. Mansfield Park is the story of Fanny Price, a sweet kind girl-niece to the Bertram family, who was sent to stay with the Bertrams. Instead of being treated as family, she is seen as “lesser” because of the “bad blood” inherited from her father who her mother “married down” to.
She is particularly mistreated by her evil aunt, Mrs. Norris, and two cousins; all of which take pride in bossing her around and being as cruel as can be. Fanny is the essence of sweetness, taking this injustice in stride and trying to remain optimistic in a bad situation.
The life of the Bertrams are interrupted when a Mr. Henry Crawford and Miss Mary Crawford come to visit their half-sister Mrs. Grant. Mary is set on winning the eldest Bertram, but finds her interest captured by the younger brother, Edmund,-even though he is intent on being a minister and Mary finds religion hypocritical. Fanny has loved Edmund since she was young, but he has never thought of her in such a way and he is now completely captivated by Mary. Henry Crawford’s sole interest is to upset the apple cart by going after the Bertram sisters for sport, having no intent of being serious or facing any consequences. Will the Bertrams and Fanny survive this?
That is not good,
The Mansfield Park Opera was a part of the Story into Song Literacy Initiative and worked with a lot of literacy advocacy organizations, (such as the Becoming Jane Austen Book Club, Modesto Library, Modesto Friends of the Library, and more) and half of the cast are making their solo professional debuts. Pretty amazing!
HillariDeSchane is a JASNA life member and a board member of Opera Modesto. Her pre-show opera talks have become audience favorites. DeSchane’s first Regency pet cozy: A Christmas Tail: A Regency Holiday Mystery received a Certificate of Merit from the Cat Writers Association hillarideschane.com
So the program gave a copy of the full talk, but I’m not going to write it word for word. I’ll just write my notes and paraphrase a bit.
So taking a book as long and complex as Mansfield Park and cutting it down to a two-hour opera is no easy feat. Mansfield Park is a “tapestry of human emotion and psychology.” (Deschane).
In the opera they strip the book down to the central theme and a small number of characters. The story is told as a chamber opera, more intimate-like a theater in the round. The opera itself is group centered, with no arias or being solo based.
The opera also focus on the theme of “The Fall of Man” and the “Expulsion from Eden.” Mansfield Park is Eden, a paradise, and each character is tempted by their own personal snakes, with many falling victim to their pleasures and “biting the apple”.
As seen with the recent TV show Sandition, there are many who think Austen needs to be sexier and steamier but truth is-they just need to remake Mansfield Park as it has it all: gambling, drinking, seduction, adultery-just full of thse vices without modern additions.
We really see the focus of this motiff in Scene 5: Chapter Five. In the Wilderness. Here they explore Mr. Rushworth’s home in Sotherton, where they walk a “serpentine path”. Henry offers to explore with Maria Bertram while her fiance is gone, tempting her with the two being alone together, even singing “how tempting those pathways that lie hidden-how much sweeter are the joys we are forbidden.” Edmund is given the choice to wait with Fanny while she rests from the walk, or to go off with Mary alone-and he walks off with Mary forgetting all about Fanny on her own.
The ending was changed to be more happily ever after for all, (in the novel people have to face the consequences of their actions), but I didn’t mind too much.
So the ten characters we have are:
Fanny Price (Alexandra Jernic)
Edmund Bertram (Andrew Pardini)
Mary Crawford (Angela Yam)- Professional Opera debut
Henry Crawford (Emmanuel Mercado)
Maria Bertram (Darby Schmidt)-Professional Opera debut
Julia Bertram (Brylan Finley)- Professional Opera debut
Mr. Rushworth (Luca Mitchell)- Professional Opera debut
Aunt Norris (Alison Collins)
Lady Bertram (Anakira Gabriella-Graça)
Sir Thomas Bertram (Brad Reed)- Professional Opera debut
From The Modesto Bee. Left to Right: Lady Bertram, Sir Thomas Bertram, Fanny Price, Henry Crawford, Mary Crawford, and Edmund Bertram.
There is no Tom, although he is mentioned, and sadly no William Price who I love. Oh, well.
So the opera was AMAZING! As I mentioned in an earlier post the group of us who came varied in our knowledge of Mansfield Park. One book club member had never read or seen a film version of Mansfield Park (or any Jane Austen beside The Darcy Monologues), one book club member had seen the 2007 film version, my sister had seen the 2007 version and the 1999 version years ago, and I had read the book and seen the 1999 film, 2007 film, & the 1983 miniseries. However, all were able to follow the storyline and completely comprehend and bcome fully involved in the story.
We all loved the music and found everyone to be entertaining, talented, amazing, and that they completely captured the characters they were portraying.
Fanny was perfect! She had an amazing voice; along with perfect facial expressions. I’m not a big opera fan (as in I don’t watch them all the time), and this was my first time attending one, but one thing I have noticed when I’ve seen the films or clips of Operas is that they don’t always focus on the acting-more on the singing. Alexandra Jernic was spot on. The way she looked at Edward when singing, as if they were the only ones in the room. The incredible sorrow when seeing Edward and Mary together and knowing his preference for Mary over Fanny. Or the ball scene when all are happy and excited for what the night will bring, but Fanny who all this is supposed to be for her, but she is sad and alone as her love is excited to dance with another.
Mrs. Norris was just as perfect. You hated her as immediately-every time she sang and the way she acted toward Fanny, I don’t know if there has been a better one.
Mr. Rushworth was wonderful. He was kind caring, goofy, hilarious. It amazed me that he was only 18 when he was so talented.
Another thing I really enjoyed about the performance is that each character had their own distinctive music, tone, and speed. For instance Mr. Rushworth’s was fast and quick, just like how his character spoke in the book and sang-while Henry’s music was slower, softer, more seductive.
We also loved seeing the costumes and how they looked on the performers, as in an earlier workshop we saw the swatches. We also kept an eye out for Kristine Doiel’s favorite dress of the production, the gray number that Mary Crawford wears in Scene 5: Chapter Five. In the Wilderness. It was originally worn by Anne de Bourgh in the Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley. I tried to get a good picture, but this was all I got:
But the one who stole the show for me was Angela Yam, Mary Crawford.
Every time she entered the stage all my attention went to her. She had an amazing voice and was equally amazing in her acting. One of the best scenes was when she and Edward first see each other, the way she doesn’t sing anything other than hello, but her whole body language is changed. The rest of the scene continues in the way she acts and looks. It was fantastic. That continued throughout the whole Opera as she was able to convey sooo much in her tone, a look, a motion. I was surprised this was her debut as she just blew me away. I stopped taking notes as I just wanted to enjoy her performance.
We had to leave after the opera and head home, but we did all the way humming, singing, and talking about how much we enjoyed it.
It was a wonderful experience and I am so happy to have been able to watch it. If I could have, I would have stayed the next day and watched it again.
Day 9) I is for Island: Choose a book that takes place on an Island
Anne of Green Gables (Anne of Green Gables #1) by L. M. Montgomery
I’m not quite sure when I first read this book. I just recall that one day my mom gave me her copy and told me she thought I should read it as she was pretty sure I would like it.
I wasn’t sure if I would like it, but I decided to try it out. I started to read it and just couldn’t stop.
I just loved the character of Anne as it was like looking into a soul gazing mirror. We might not look a lot alike on the outside: she has red hair, I have brown; she is tall, I’m short; she has grey eyes, I have green; she’s from Edwardian Canada, and I’m an American girl of the 21st century. But the soul of our characters are exactly the same.
Anne has an overactive imagination, gets into all kinds of “scrapes” from not thinking it through, gets lost in imagining, has a fiery temper, wants to excel in school, has rivalry with another student, has to work hard for a scholarship to school, comes from an agricultural community; but through this all grows up to be a level-headed, still dreamy, young woman.
I’ve read this book so many times, and went on to read the whole series. I liked the first three the best, but I just couldn’t enough of the story.
I also loved the character Gilbert Blythe.
I wish he was real because I would marry him in a heartbeat.
You all know how much I love the Austen men; Mr. Darcy, Mr. Tilney, Captain Wentworth, Mr. Knightley, Colonel Brandon, and such; but all of them, besides Captain Wentworth, come from money. My family is more like Gilbert’s; grew up in agricultural community, they couldn’t send me to college so I had to work and pay for it myself, just like Gilbert had to do. There is a better understanding and similarity in how we were raised that would form a better connection with him over any of the others.
Gilbert also knows how to work with Anne. When to give into her daydreams and imaginings,
and also when to help her come back into reality. Us imaginationaholics need that or else we will spend too much time in our heads.
One of my relationship goals is to find a boyfriend or husband who will be willing to dress up as Anne and Gilbert. I don’t know if that will ever be possible and if I do manage to find such a guy, I’m not sure anyone will even know who we are.
So I knew of course that my true literary self was Anne, but when I was a teenager one of my friends said to me one day.
“Hey Moreland, you remind me a lot of this character in a book I love. Have you ever read Anne of Green Gables? Because you are just like her.”
Boom! Proof that we are one and the same.
So the story is that two siblings, Matthew and Marilla Cutbert, past their prime, have decided that in order to continue running their farm, Green Gables, they need extra help. They decide to adopt an orphan boy, sending the message through the daughter of a friend. When Matthew goes to the station to pick him up, it turns out there was a serious miscommunication and they have a girl waiting.
Matthew takes her home, where Marilla is upset and determined to send her back. When she meets the woman who will take Anne instead, and sees how horrible she is, Marilla decides she will do her best to raise her.
Anne has had a hard life, her parents dying at a young age in poverty, then being shipped from family to family; mostly being used as a free baby-sitter than treated as a member of the family. She has spent a lot of her time alone or with children much younger than her, and has created habits that some, at that time, find strange. She has an extensive imagination, creates imaginary playmates, and when gets with people just talks and talks and talks.
I remember when I was in Wyoming, I was alone for a whole month, so then when I started hanging wit people that happiness of being with people made me run at the mouth.
Marilla has no idea how to raise children, let alone girls, let alone this girl; so at first she tries to stop this behavior, but eventually it grows on her. Anne gets into all kinds of troubles, making mistakes as she transition from unwanted, uneducated, accident prone girl; to a confident, loved, intelligent, and wonderful woman.
So I’m going to do this review a little different. I’m going to list through everything I liked, enjoyed, or stood out to me in the novel; instead of a page by page review.
A) Her Imagination
Her imagination is amzing. Not only does she dream of average things like games but creates all these back stories and tales for things she sees, people she meets, etc. And that it is so something I have done and still do. That’s the problem with having an overactive imagination, you can never turn it off. But the best thing of it is that the world is never boring.
I love the stories and descriptions she gives.
“It was pretty interesting to imagine things about them- to imagine that perhaps the girl who sat next to you was really the daughter of a belted earl, who had been stolen away from her parents in her infancy by a cruel nurse who died before she could confess.”
B) Appearances Can Be Deceiving
Anne was born with red hair and people have told her it was a pity, said it ugly, etc. Because she feels so ugly she believes that she is worthless and that she will never find someone to love her.
How funny when this book has had 50 million copies printed and been translated into 20 languages.
I think a LOT of us love her.
But her insecurities based on her past history and what she sees in the mirror blind her to the amazing soul she has, like Dashti in The Book of a Thousand Days. If only she could see how wonderful she really is.
C) Naming and Renaming
Anne loves to name things. She names everything from plants, to trees, to objects, etc.
“What is the name of that geranium on the windowsill, please?’
‘That’s the apple-scented geranium.’
‘Oh, I don’t mean that sort of a name. I mean just a name you gave it yourself?…Oh, I like things to have handles even if they are only geraniums. It makes them seem more like people.”
I do that too. I’ve named all my electronics, for instance my printer is Eramus; to everyday objects I use a lot-like my kettle which is Geoffrey. It is fun and better than saying it.
And if Anne doesn’t like something, she changes the name.
“When I don’t like the name of a place or a person I always imagine a new one and always think of them so.”
I do that all the time. Remember Metropolis? Freder Frederson was a dumb name to me, so he became Alan instead.
D) Matthew Has Never Stood Up to Marilla Before, This Being the Only Exception
Matthew is nice, so nice he never asserts himself, argues, or tries to get his way over another. Marilla wants to send Anne back to the orphanage, but Matthew speaks up. For the first time in his life, he has been contrary to Marilla.
“[Marilla] What good would she be to us?’
‘We might be some good to her.’ said Matthew suddenly and unexpectedly.”
Even though seeing the cruel woman who was going to take her made Marilla change her mind about getting rid of Anne; I believe that Matthew’s insistence helped give her a push in that direction as well.
E) Anne’s Optimism
Anne has been through so much in life. With people not wanting her, others using her; unhappiness and cynicism is something you would expect her to have, to be a prime part of her life. But does she? NO. She is completely optimistic, hopeful, and consistently sunny even in the grayest of situations. We should all try to strive to be a lot more like her. She makes the best of every situation and enjoys life.
F) I Speak Fluently in Book Quotes
Anne loves to read, although she hasn’t been able to do it as much as she would have liked. But she is constantly quoting from whatever she has read, having such things pop up randomly in conversations.
“Well that is another hope gone. My life is a perfect graveyard of buired hopes. That’s a sentence I read in a book once, and I say itover to comfort myself whenever I’m disappointed in anything.”
Now you might recall I’ve mentioned before that I like to speak in movie quotes, I do the same things with books I’ve read. Most people don’t know what I’m talking about, but it is still fun.
G) Compares Herself to Books/Book Heroines
What can I say? I do this constantly. I think I’ve done it a thousand times in the past, and am currently doing it right now.
I just can’t help it!
H) Bosom Friends
Finding a best friend is hard. But being without one is worse.
We all wish we can have a bosom friend, but not all are luckily enough to find one. And if we do find opne, it is hard to keep them.
But as Anne says, they are the most important and we need to honor them and try to keep those bonds strong!
And what a good friend Anne is, I hope I’m half as good a friend as she is.
“And I can give Diana half of them, can’t I? The other half will taste twice as sweet to me if I give some to her. It’s delightful to think I have something to give her.”
I) Gilbert Blythe
I have always had a thing for guys who were
And I realize, as I read this long before Pride & Prejudice, Gilbert Blythe is probably the reason why.
“[Gilbert Blythe] was a tall boy, with curly brown hair, roguish hazel eyes, and a mouth that twisted into a teasing smile.”
J) Anne Shirley’s Temper
How many of you have a temper? I know I do. When I was younger I didn’t control it very well and would blow up. Especially if it was something that really hurt me.
So Anne is the same way. Gilbert wants her attention, but Anne isn’t here, but in her imagination. So Gilbert does the only thing he can think of: he gets her attention by calling her carrots.
Anne becomes so enraged she smacks her slate over his head.
This was the scene in the book that made my friend think of me. She said that she could see me doing this…and this is the truth. I have done this more times than I care to admit to guys who acted like jerks to me when I was younger. Happily I use my words now, but this was definitely me.
K) Holding a Grudge
I used to hold grudges all the time and I still do a bit, but try not to. After Gilbert hurt her Anne resolves never to forgive him and starts up a rivalry in that she must beat him in everything.
L) Making Mistakes
Anne makes a ton of mistakes, but with every one she always turns them into a positive. And I try to do that all the time. I mean it is inevitable, we are going to mess up as we aren’t perfect. But there is always one thing to hold on to:
M) Matthew Goes Shopping, the Dad Mistake
One of the best parts of the book is when Matthew goes shopping for Anne’s dress. He gets so flustered that he ends up buying a rake and twenty pounds of sugar.
Eventually he gets the neighbor to make her the right dress. Such a dad thing to do; try to get his daughter a dress and fails.
One time when I was at school, my dress’ zipper broke so they called my parents, and my dad came right over. Except he didn’t bring one dress; he didn’t know what to do so he brought every dress in the closet.
N) Let’s Act Out a Story
Anne and her friends act out the story of the poem The Lady of Shalott by Alfred Lloyd Tennyson. They get a boat and put Anne in it, sending her down the river. She loses the oars and the boat springs a leak. Eventually she is stuck in the river.
And about to drown, but who should save her?
I love this part. First, how sweet that he saves her life.
And secondly, I have never had this happen but I have tried to act stories out and had them fail.
O) Gilbert and Anne
After Gilbert saves Anne he tries to talk to her and get her forgiveness, and it is just the sweetest scene ever.
“I’m awfully sorry I made fun of your hair that time. I didn’t mean to vex you and I only meant it for a joke…I think your hair is awfully pretty now-honest I do. Let’s be friends.”
He’s crazy about her. If only she could see…
P) I Will Never Forgive You
Gilbert cutely asks for Anne’s forgiveness, bur Anne says no. She is holding onto the grudge and continues to do it for a long time. I have to admit that I was the same way. Me and Anne we have Mr. Darcy temperaments.
Q) Romance Sucks
So Anne decides that romance is over. After almost drowning, she’s done.
But Matthew warns her that not all romance isn’t bad.
“Don’t give up all your romance, Anne,’ he whispered, shyly, ‘a little of it is a good thing-not too much of course-but keep a little of it, Anne, keep a little of it.”
R) Anne starts softening
Anne starts softening about Gilbert,even though she doesn’t realize it.
“Gilbert looks awfully determined. I suppose he’s making up his mind, here and now, to win the medal. What a splendid chin he has!“
She looks at him, watching him a lot. She see’s him out with Ruby Gillis, and doesn’t like it.
She has tons of girlfriends, but thinks it would be nice to have a guy as a friend. And Gilbert is so smart, they could spend a lot of time together talking about all kinds of stuff. Watch her Gilbert, soon you will have your in. Just wait a bit longer.
S) Gilbert Gives Up His School for Anne
After Matthew dies, Anne decides to stall her scholarship to help Marilla with Green Gables as Matthew is gone and Marilla’s eyesight is horrible. Gilbert gets the Avonlea school, while Anne will have to travel out to White Sands. However, Gilbert goes to the board and has them switch schools so that Anne can stay there with Marilla.
The whole point of him not going to continue his education was because he needed to earn money to pay for it. So now he switches schools and will have to pay board, eating into the funds he has been trying to save.
And even though nothing turns out quite like she hopes, she’s lost those she cared for, built new friendships, teaching instead of being schooled; Anne can still find joy in life.
“God’s in his heaven, all’s right with the world…”
Just love it. If you haven’t read it, read it. If you have read it, read it again!
Today’s Christmas Carol is Good King Wenceslas. Good King Wenceslas is based on the historical Saint Wenceslaus I. The carol is telling the story about Wenceslaus and his page going out in the cold to deliver alms for the poor.
The song was written in 1853, with the lyrics by John Mason Neale and the music borrowed from the 13th century carol Tempus adest floridum.
I chose the version by Bing Crosby, as you all know how much I love him!