Happy Friday, Royal Hearties. We are on the eve of an exciting and groundbreaking event: an American is becoming a British princess! Meghan Markle, who starred in one Hallmark film that I’m aware of (Dater’s Handbook), is tying the knot with England’s very own Prince Harry, and will subsequently receive the title of Duchess of Sussex. How about them Washington apples? 😀

Now, of course we don’t have actual royalty on the show, but we do have “William Thatcher’s princess”. After all, as so many characters point out in Season 2, the Thatcher are “practically Hamilton royalty”. So for today’s #FlashbackFriday,  I thought it would be fun, (after my dearest Sarah inspired me,) to take a look back at all the beautiful weddings that have taken place on this lovely series. That will get us in the mood to watch the royal nuptials tomorrow if you’re inclined to tune in. Besides, June Weddings is coming up in less than a month! We have to start gearing up for that too, now don’t we?!

First up: shy, quiet, and completely endearing Mary Dunbar uniting with patient, kind, and serving DeWitt Graves. Was anyone else disheartened to see them slip down the black hole? They were SO CUTE! Mary called them “simple folk”, but they added such a sweet dynamic. I loved what Lee had to say about DeWitt in particular, “That boy is a goner!” And DeWitt himself saying to that scoundrel impersonating Pastor Hogan: “That’d be the best $5 I ever spent!” when he’s told the fee is just precious.

It was heartening to see Rosemary step in to make their wedding beautiful, especially when we didn’t really like her at this point. But Lee said something else profound when he said, “I guess beautiful people know how to make things beautiful.” It really did look lovely, and Mary deserved to have her special day be lovely.

Then there’s the actual ceremony. Jack, (of course!), was the best man! Sweet that Mary was so nervous, especially since she’d been married before. Is it as nerve-wracking the second time around? Too bad that sweet and beautiful occasion was almost ruined by an imposter. Good thing Frank makes his heroic first appearance to save the day! Can you imagine how those two would have felt to have their marriage not be legitimate? They seemed to take it in stride though. They hardly flinched when Frank took his place before them. Then to top it all off, DeWitt says, “Okay!” when told to kiss his bride, and does so very thoroughly! Perfect for Wedding #1!

Credit Crown Media

 I wasn’t going to include this, but seeing as how Ms. Markle is marrying into the British royal family, we must give a shout-out to Viola. We don’t see her actual wedding, “sadly”. But, she does marry a Brit, and he is part of the British aristocracy; has a title and everything, which is what Viola’s main interest was initially. Seeing as how she has a baby in Season 5, we can only hope that the marriage is going well, and they find themselves well-suited for one another. I bet they are top notch in London society! 

Credit Crown Media

Next! You know which one it is! Lee and Rosemary! I’m going to stick to just the wedding with these two lovebirds, because SPOILER ALERT! I’ll be flashing back to the entire episodes the week that The Perfect Bride: Wedding Bells premieres. Fitting, huh?

I find it ironic how simple their wedding turned out to be after that tangled nightmare of plans. But it was the perfect blend of the classic beauty Rosemary is famous for, and the self-sacrifice she is learning to exercise. The violinist playing “The Wedding March” was an especially elegant touch, an inspiring compliment to the lady herself. Too bad Lee couldn’t show off his lumberjack and carpentry skills by building that gazebo Rosemary wanted. But he reminded us of his talent for wit when he quipped that he could build said gazebo while she made adjustments to her hair

My husband would disagree, (he’s very fond of nicknaming Rosemary “the devil”), but I love that Lee AND Rosemary acknowledge how lucky they are! And knowing what we do now, that Lee admitted he was VERY nervous, I saw it in his breathy exhale before Frank begins. Once again, knowing what we know now, I find it perfectly suitable that Cody was the ring bearer; it sets the tone for Lee to become close to Cody later on. Jack reprised his role as best man VERY well; I guess he was the town’s go-to guy when they needed one. And Elizabeth made a beautiful 1st-time Hope Valley bridesmaid, including when she blushed hopelessly after catching the bouquet.

Credit Crown Media

Which brings me to the crown jewel, if you’ll pardon the pun! Could there be anything more serene than Jack and Elizabeth’s wedding? Just pretend you’re as ignorant to Jack’s death as you were when you watched it! Besides, there was plenty of drama surrounding the event! Hope Valley weddings seem to be incapable of happening quietly! First, an imposter and interrupted ceremony; next, a flood, and the best man almost dying. Then, a shootout and a fire! I loved how Jack was willing to postpone the wedding, or have it outside…whatever she wanted. You can vaguely see him panicking because something terrible has happened to Elizabeth, and he can’t fix it. This just came to me this moment, but Frank is there all three times, and I believe he is a calming and soothing influence all three times.

Now, on to the wedding itself. I know I’ve covered it already, but I promise to not be repetitive. One very interesting thing I’ve heard is there is a lot of speculation that Meghan is going to wear a family heirloom of some sort…and why does that sound familiar now? Elizabeth wore that beautiful circlet that her mother wore at HER wedding. I thought that was such a nice touch! It incorporated her mother when the actress wasn’t able to be there. And that hairstyle was the best that new wig has looked yet! Also, let’s not forget how Elizabeth’s exquisite gown and Jack’s strapping uniform so closely resemble Prince William and Princess Kate’s wedding clothes, Meghan’s soon-to-be in-laws! Do you think the costume designers did it on purpose? The dress at least? It’s something to speculate.

Credit Crown Media

I thought about something that was said on Home and Family when Dan was interviewed after the wedding aired. Maria, one of the regulars who is a “super Heartie”, sat in on the conversation, along with Mark Steines, the host. Maria said she thought the town pulling together was exactly what When Calls the Heart stands for. They all unite as a community to pull off the impossible, around the “heart of the community”: Jack and Elizabeth. I’ve heard in interviews of how much the Queen adores Harry. I’d like to think she’s able to use her heart more often with him than she can in other situations. I’ve also heard of how personable Harry and Meghan are with those they meet. They’ve won the hearts of many. Nevertheless, this being THE most unorthodox royal marriage in the history of Great Britain, I think the family WILL need to pull together. I have a feeling, given how affectionate they are in public, that Harry and Meghan will follow the example of Jack and Elizabeth, and not be able to take their eyes off one another. I do, however, believe that Harry will refrain from pulling Meghan toward him for a kiss. I imagine that wouldn’t be considered dignified on the Buckingham Palace balcony.

Credit Radiotimes.com

Well, dear ones, I must bid you farewell. Remember that in honor of this revolutionary event, Hallmark is running a Royal Movie Marathon, that tells the stories that Meghan is now living! 😀 It starts at 6:30/5:30 central tomorrow morning, and runs all day until the premiere of the new movie “Royally Ever After”. The marathon also includes “Dater’s Handbook”, Meghan Markle’s Hallmark movie. So no matter how you spend the weekend, I hope it’s a wonderful one. In honor of the Brits, CHEERIO!   

Hello, Hearties…and Postables! I get so excited when there’s a movie I can share with both sets of fans. Many of us are crossovers, since we love both series. But for those who aren’t, this is just another amazing opportunity to bring these two amazing shows, and two amazing GROUPS together! We’re all fans of uplifting, wholesome, family-friendly television! And let’s not forget QUALITY! We can never get enough entertainment with those traits!

Sorry I’m late again: another craaazy day with our family getting adjusted to having a new baby in the house. But I’m here now, and I thought that since Mother’s Day just occurred, it would be fun to review a movie that explores a mother/daughter relationship, and ANOTHER mother/daughter relationship where the daughter of one is the mother of the other. Did you follow that? Because it sounded complicated in my head! Anyway we have a great mix of cast and crew members from both series! From WCTH: Jimmy Townsend and Brad Krevoy as executive producers, and Lilah Fitzgerald (Jolene Miller) as Claire’s daughter Lou, (shout out to any of us who are Heartland fans!) A crossover actor in both When Calls the Heart and Signed Sealed Delivered is Paul McGillion (WCTH: fake Pastor Hogan, SSD the series: Henry Barrett, Danny’s (the artist father,) as Coach Reed. The other SSD actors include the man who played Clay the soldier in Truth be Told as Terry the producer. Sorry, I couldn’t find his name! And of course, the much-loved Geoff Gustafson (NORMAN DORMAN!) as Jonah the engineer. It also stars 3 very talented actors that make the movie: Kimberly Williams Paisley, Tom Cavanaugh, and Wendy Malick.

I am, of course, speaking of Darrow and Darrow: In the Key of Murder. It took me a bit to get it, which is sad since I’m a singer, but I did get it eventually. Miles’s sister is a singer accused of murder, so… you get it, right? You were quicker than I was. I blame the postpartum brain!

Anyway, this is the 2nd installment of what I suspect will be a multi-movie series. If you haven’t seen one, or the other, or either, I highly recommend them. They’re on Hallmark Movies and Mysteries. The basic backstory is a widowed lawyer, Claire, has to deal with her very gifted but very awkward daughter’s new school, her critical and domineering mother moving back home, and a smooth-talking DA hitting on her. Now in this film, things are settled down a bit. Claire and Miles are “comfortably” dating, but haven’t kissed yet, at least not on screen. Then Miles’s sister gets in trouble, and it’s up to Claire and Miles to save the day. And they do!

Let’s talk about them! Can I just say how much I LOVE their chemistry? I love it almost as much as I love Jack and Elizabeth’s! But it’s completely different! They have such a dry, humorous banter. They also have incredible timing! It makes their conversations even funnier to listen to, and they’re not afraid to overlap their words, or cut each other off. It makes it all the more natural. One thing they tried to do was go a whole week without “talking shop”, talking about work. They made it 6 hours. In all fairness, his sister Phoebe ASKED for legal help.

Probably their best scene, (if I had to pick,) would be the reason for the title: the grape soda scene. If you haven’t seen it, Miles and Claire are trying to figure out a way to prove his sister’s innocence. It’s late, they’re tired, and thirsty. Claire offers Miles a drink; he declines, until she says all they have is grape soda. He literally throws down his pen, and goes on a rampage monologue about how much he LOVED grape soda as a kid, and still does. Then he has this hysterical eye-popping grunt when he takes the first sip; obviously the beverage has not lost its flavor on his pallet. To top it off, they have “a moment”. They stop talking, and start staring. Then as if he’s asking for more butter, (right, Postables?!), he says, “Now would be a terrible time for a kiss.” They almost do…and he gets up to leave. But he turns around, looks at her sappily, and comes back. She turns in her chair, obviously expecting a smooch, and then he…picks up his grape soda. Can’t forget that! And at the very end, he brings grape soda to celebrate the victory. I really hope they make it a thing, because that’s great stuff! My only hesitation was, Miles said he drank it all the time “as a youth”. Who says that instead of “as a kid”? It was just funny to me!

Time for mothers and daughters. I usually think that sequels are better when it comes to relationships. Everything’s established, the actors are more settled into their characters, and there’s more time to explore when groundwork is already laid. One moment I really like is when Claire and her mother are talking about her taking on a case of her own. Joanna is wearing a bright red top, and Claire is in a pure green top: the colors of Christmas. I don’t know if this was on purpose, but it reminded me a lot of them: completely different, but they just belong together. Even though Claire gets upset at Joanna for eavesdropping on her conversation with Lou about her baseball team, she can’t help but agree when Joanna says, “It saves time.”

But I’ll bet that all the Hearties, like myself, LOVE their conversations involving…wait for it…catching flies with honey!!! I thought it funny that the first thing Claire says to Joanna when she reminds her of the saying, is why would anyone WANT to catch flies? Question everything, that’s how those two tick. Joanna is trying to calm Claire down because Lou’s baseball coach won’t play her. She also says that to ignore the saying would be to ignore Benjamin Franklin himself because he coined the phrase. I wonder if that’s true. Research! Somebody look that up! Oh wait! I am the research department. Claire’s best comeback to her mother the whole movie is, “I give honey one week, no matter what Ben Franklin says.”

Well, Postables, our turn. Our sweet Geoff/Norman! He had a lot of the same mannerisms, facial expressions, and voice patterns that endeared him to us in SSD. Perhaps not so dear in THIS movie huh? Was it as hard for you as it was for me to watch him play a conspirator/murderer? I was glad his character wasn’t a cold-blooded killer, but a scared protector. I don’t know if I could have watched that! But it’s always the quiet ones, isn’t it? So tell me one thing: when they found Jonah in the garage, why didn’t they turn off the car, or open the garage door? That could have ruined Jonah’s plan very quickly huh?

Well, everyone, there’s some much more I could say about this film! But it IS getting late, and I better get some sleep before my darling baby wants to eat again. He’s 6 weeks old now! And if you’re dying of curiosity: I’m still slow and sore from the hernia surgery, but I’m healing a little bit more everyday. Postables, you’re welcome back ANY TIME! Hearties, I’ll try really hard to see you on Friday! Ta ta!

Evening, everybody! Very sorry this is so late. Today was my first day downstairs since the operation. My niece was here to help, but, to a degree, I took care of all 4 kids today. Whoa! It was a little overwhelming, but we made it through. There just wasn’t a whole lot of down time.

Well now you’ve had the update on me, time for our #MeetYouMonday spotlight. She is the admin of the South Texas Hearties group, and she is such a treasure! I had the privilege of meeting this lady, (actually in person!), when the South Texas Hearties had an actual…dare i say it…tea party! And it was lovely. May I present Yvonne Davila!

1. Where are you from? -San Antonio, TX

If you’re living elsewhere, where are you living now? -Living in Bulverde for 12 years

2. Tell us about your family.

-My Dad’s side of the family came to San Antonio in 1731 (1 of original 15 Spanish Canary Islanders who founded the city, set up the 1st city council). Mom was born in Llano, TX & moved here in the early 1940’s. My husband & I were high school sweethearts & have been married for 41 yrs. We have 2 daughters – our oldest works for a railroad and the youngest is a consultant specializing in disaster preparedness & business continuance. My oldest daughter, also a Heartie, has a five year old son that keeps my husband and I busy.

3. What are your hobbies?

-I love Eucharistic Adoration, reading & volunteering. I’m currently a member of our parish’s Womens ACTS retreat team. What are you studying/did you study in school? I am an RN (42 yrs, stopped practicing in January ’18). I am also a legal nurse consultant & fellow for ABQAURP – American Board of Quality Assurance and Utilization Review Board & have my ALHC – associate in life & health claims designation. I needed those when I worked as a homicide/ suicide investigator. I just got my certified tour guide designation in August ’17.

4. How did you find/discover WCTH?

-I loved Hallmark movies & watched the WCTH movie. I liked it…a lot. They mentioned a new series which I thought I’d give a try. I started looking on FB for more fans like me & came across the group.

5. What is your favorite episode? -Wedding, I think although the were so many in season 1, homestead one in season 2, …

Season? -Season 1, hands down.

6. Who is your favorite character? -Elizabeth
Star of the show? -I am torn between Elizabeth, Mountie Jack, widows, children, Rosemary & Lee…

7. Why are you a Heartie?

-I really connected with the heartfelt stories.

Why do you love the show?

-There are lessons for all viewers, examples of community, love, compassion, patience, bravery, kindness, respect & God as a basis in their lives.

8. Anything else you enjoy, or anything you’d like to add?

-I am grateful for the new WCTH friends. I’ve been fortunate enough to meet Daniel Lissing twice & the cast @ HFR3. I met old friends from FB, new friends from our South Texas & Southeast Texas group, the HFR organizers, Brian Bird, Janette Oke, Marisa Serafini & my new friend, Lydia Coste, my reunion roommate from Maryland. I’ve found most Hearties are of the same heart so we were like long lost friends. A true blessing.

Happy Friday, Hearties! Sorry I didn’t post on Wednesday, but I did warn you that the blog would be in and out while I’m recovering. And Wednesday was a take-it-easy day. Quick update on that: I’m getting better little by little. Having a C-section then hernia surgery in a month’s time, and only about 6 inches away from each other, definitely takes a toll. I still have some pain, and I tire VERY easily. But I actually went down the stairs today for the first time since the operation, so there is progress day by day. I’m continually humbled and grateful to all of you who have been thinking and praying for me and my family. That is most welcome, and it IS helping! So thank you!

Now! Let’s move on. I can’t deliver more #FanFictionFriday yet; not enough time has passed, and my brain has been…a little muddled as of late. 😉 So today is a #FlashbackFriday, but a little different. I’m going to teach you a theatrical term amidst all this WCTH talk. I’ve seen many, MANY posts on Heartie Facebook pages bemoaning the fact that we as fans weren’t given advance warning of Dan’s departure. I went through this emotion as well, in between my shock and despair. Why were we not prepared for this very sudden and very DRAMATIC turn of events? I stayed away for a while; it was too painful. But I mustered up the courage, and recently watched a few select episodes from Season 5 again, including: Jack’s return, the wedding, and the “honeymoon”. Knowing what I did, I scrutinized their performances. I smiled when I saw a post just this morning about a Heartie who had done the same. She said that she felt Jack had an inkling of his time running out, and that’s why he rushed to get things moving. And she applauded their performances. I agreed to an extent, but I also found the opposite. I’ll explain 😀

Here’s where the term comes in. I learned it my freshman year of college from my very first theater professor there. Honestly, I don’t know if it’s a real term, or something he made up. It’s called, “playing the end”. He insisted it was something young actors did far too often, and he was always reminding us not to do it. “Playing the end” means acting out a scene with the end of the play in mind. For example: a production of “Titanic”. We all know what happens: the boat sinks, and far too many people drown. But the characters don’t know that at the beginning of the play, and first class especially hasn’t a care in the world. Even after the iceberg hits, the characters don’t know who lives and who dies, and most fight to live. So actors have to be careful to not get sad or give up etc. prematurely. Before every performance of every show, this professor would say, “All of this is happening for the first time, you’ve never heard any of these words before.” It really helped!

This is something I think the cast and crew of WCTH did very well. They knew Jack was going to die, but we didn’t, and they didn’t want to spoil our joy and enjoyment. Be honest! Would you have adored the proposal or the wedding NEARLY as much if you’d known Jack would soon be gone? I know I would not have. I would have been too downtrodden.

I listened to Jack talk about his plans for their home, and to Elizabeth persuading Jack to build a crib for their first baby. The whole scene when Lee gives Jack the boards for the new home, then offering to help him build: none of these beautiful moments would have happened if they had been “playing the end”. Heck, the wedding itself wouldn’t have happened if they’d played the end!

What are some other moments we would have missed had they played the end? Some that come to my mind are:

1. When the two of them whisper “Finally!” at their reception

2. The rose petals on the stairs

3. Elizabeth showing her flexibility and endurance by going on a very impromptu and unglamorous honeymoon

4. Rosemary, Dottie, and Clara keeping Jack from seeing Elizabeth’s dress

5. Jack opening up to Elizabeth about the Northern Territories

Many people have accused the writers and executives of being deceitful. I think their purpose was higher. There were legal reasons they couldn’t say anything, but I’d also like to think that they wanted to keep us delighted for as long as possible when they had to deal with a sad and inevitable situation. We can’t blame the writers for this unavoidable sadness. Maybe that’s seeing the world through rose-colored glasses, or being a Pollyanna. But is that so bad? “Ignorance is bliss,” they say. And we were certainly blissful as we watched all these serene moments.

Have a wonderful night, Hearties, and a fantastic weekend! Maybe go back and relive some of your favorite WCTH moments, if you feel up to it. But whatever you do, feel happy! See you Monday! And yes, I can promise this one! Toot-a-loo!

 

Good morning, Hearties!  Look at me, getting the blog out in the morning, for a change!  I want to just take a moment, and express my heartfelt thanks for all of you who sent prayers and well wishes my way.  So many of you sent kind words on the main fan page that the admins had to turn of the comments.  That’s never happened to me before, and I was feeling the Heartie love.  As you can probably guess, the surgery went off without a hitch.  I’m home, I’m healing, and it shouldn’t be too long before I’m fully recovered.  So to all of you: your prayers have been felt, and I send you my deepest thanks

Now then!  Enough of all that sentimental junk!  Wait a minute, that’s the REASON we watch this show, and have this blog! 😀  For today’s #MeetYouMonday, I want to introduce you to a very special lady.  Once again, I’ve never met her in person, but I still feel like I know her.  We’ve had lots of conversations away from the fan page, and she has a heart of gold!  She’s also very enthusiastic about the fan fiction I’ve published, and she actually thinks I’m funny!  She’s very forbearing! 😉  May I present Sarah Vrieze!

 

  1. Where are you from? If you’re living elsewhere, where are you living now?
  • I’m originally from Menomonie, Wisconsin. I moved to Richfield, Minnesota and grew up there. I now live in Eden Prairie.

 

  1. Tell us about your family.
  • I’m the third of 3 kids. I have an older brother, David, and an older sister, Sue. Everyone lives close by. David in Burnsville, and Sue in Minneapolis. My parents were wonderful singers; they actually met in their college choir. Dad always said, “She chased me until I caught her.”  They were so cute together! They were married for 59 years before my Dad passed away. We had a lot of music in our home; everyone sang while I played the piano. We even had 4 part harmony! Dad and Mom also built a camper and we camped throughout the United States.

 

  1. What are your hobbies? What are you studying/did you study in school?
  • Hobbies! Yikes! Do you have an hour and a half?? Let’s see…I have been stitching since I was 6, and knitting since I was 7, and I love quilting on top of that.  I LOVE SCRAPBOOKING!  I have been a scrapbooker since the age of 4, and I’ve been reminding Kami that she needs to scrapbook pictures of her adorable kids.  I’ve also started documenting my family history.  I’m also a bit of a collector.  I collect sheet music from WWI and WWII that I love to play.  I have my mother to thank for this!  She saw me as a creative person, and got me started early on doing fun things. Thanks, Mom!  I’m hardly ever bored! 

 

  • In the field of school and studies, I kind of a jack of all trades. I didn’t study theatre, but I did do some acting in college.  I studied elementary education, psychology and biology; I had wanted to be a teacher since I was very young. Upon graduation, there were very few teaching jobs, so I received the gift of being able to teach on a Native American reservation in South Dakota. I taught kindergarten, and sometimes subbed for music.  After a time, I felt I should come home, so I started working with medical students at the University of Minnesota. That led to a career as a medical transcriptionist.  But I wasn’t a homebody!  I’ve traveled to 12 different countries.

 

  1. How did you find/discover WCTH?
  • I actually found WCTH when I was channel surfing, of all things! It’s funny; I don’t usually like period dramas, but I thought why not?  I’ll give it a shot. Shockingly, I didn’t like it at first, GASP!  But I came back again, and then…I was lost!  I became totally addicted.

 

  1. What is your favorite episode? Season?
  • My favorite episode would have to be in season 1 when Jack asked Elizabeth out the first time, and said, “Elizabeth, please do consider this an act of courtship.” Don’t tell Kami I told you, but she squealed like a schoolgirl when I told her because that’s one of her favorites too!

 

  1. Who is your favorite character? Star of the show?
  • I took to Jack right away because he reminded me so much of an old flame of mine. He was/will always be my favorite.

 

  1. Why are you a Heartie? Why do you love the show?
  • I’m a Heartie because I love the Hearties community. I live alone, and most of my friends have passed on. (I’m old, in my 60’s). It’s wonderful to have made friends who are like-minded, and are always there for me. I know we’ve had troubles lately, but I will always be a Heartie.  Of COURSE I will keep watching the show…even with Jack gone. I just have to adjust my thinking a bit, and not be such a sourpuss about it!

 

  1. Anything else you enjoy, or anything you’d like to add?
  • I had a bit of a life-changing experience. I developed advanced colon cancer at the age of 55. It then went into my liver, and didn’t look good. I thought God had deserted me, and I lost a lot of hope.  But then, I saw what I did have: I had the best oncologist, wonderful nurses, and people came out of the woodwork to support me. I’ve been free from cancer 11 years now.  The best part is I have reconnected with God; I finally realized He was there for me all the time. I’m just so grateful to be alive! Life is good.