Two of my favorite 'chick flicks' to sit and watch with my sister are Anne of Green Gables and Anne of Avonlea. We will curl up on the couch, have our popcorn ready, and enjoy this time together. I have a lot of memories involving these movies, and I hope to add many more as time goes on!
While watching this with her, I have come to realize that there are things that we can learn from Anne Shirley. This little orphan girl gets a chance to be loved, and grows up with good friends. She gets a chance to live her dreams, instead of watching eight kids forever. It's through her story that we can learn about our own lives.
1. You don't have to be family to love each other.
Anne Shirley moves to Prince Edward Island to live with a family, only to realize that they didn't want her. They had sent for a boy and ended up with a little redheaded girl. Despite the doubt the Cuthberts had, they couldn't send Anne away. Matthew was the first to truly love his little girl, but Marilla eventually did as well.
The love that these three had for each other shows us that you can be family and love each other without being blood relatives. This is shown to us throughout the whole movie. Following her life, we see that it isn't easy, but neither is being a sister to my little sister. I'm sure anyone with younger siblings can agree!
2. Imagination is a good thing.
From the opening scene, until that kiss in Anne of Avonlea, imagination is a key factor in how Anne tackles problems. She used her imagination while sitting lonely in an orphanage. She used the drama of her own imagination to make her life seem more exciting.
Anne Shirley: Don't you ever imagine things differently from what they are?
Marilla Cuthbert: No.
Anne Shirley: Oh Marilla, how much you miss.
Her overly dramatic self annoyed everyone who she came in contact with, especially Marilla. This was until this drama and imagination lead to her writing about her life in Avonlea. She taught us that imagination isn't a bad thing. Imagination makes life exciting. It brings brightness to a dull rainy day. It is what told us as children that the floor was made of lava.
3. Kindred spirits come in many shapes and sizes.
Diana Barry was Anne's 'bosom friend'. They became friends as soon as they learned about each other. Diana came from a wealthy family, and Anne was the orphan. Two opposites, but kindred spirits all the same.
Watching their friendship grow has taught me to never give up on being friends with someone. You can like completely different things and still find that there are so many things you still have in common. Anne found many kindred spirits along her way, and they helped her achieve things she never thought possible.
4. Never give up on your dreams.
As an orphan, Anne had many dreams that she wanted to come true. She almost gave up hope on so many, calling them her 'graveyard of hopes'.
My life is a perfect graveyard of buried hopes. That's a sentence I read once and I say it over to comfort myself in these times that try the soul.
One of her hopes was having a family to call her own, and another was to have her book about Avonlea published. Both of these dreams came true. What I learned by watching her go through feeling alone at the beginning of the movie, was that you should never lose hope. Dreams can come true, they just sometimes need a little patience.
5. Sometimes, true love sits right under your nose.
Gilbert Blythe waited a long time for Anne to figure out that she really did indeed love him. She loathed him to an extreme, but he never gave up hoping that she'd one day learn to overlook the 'Carrots' scene. His patience was rewarded, even though she thought it was too late.
Anne Shirley: Aren't you worried? I'm liable to break another slate over your head.
Gilbert Blythe: I'm more worried I might break one over yours, carrots.
Just like what happened to Anne and Gil, sometimes love hides in plain sight. You'll be waiting for the 'mysterious romantic' when the person by your side ends up being the one you were looking for all along.
I love these movies so much, and I love how there is something we can learn from them.