Well, here we are at the end of another week! And tomorrow is December 1st! Advent calendars start, decorating gets finished up, baking increases, shopping gets busier…if we thought things went into full force on November 23rd, then this is going to warp speed! For my last November post for being grateful, I am so grateful for this season. To quote a lyric from my favorite singer, Josh Groban: “And even though this world needs so much more, there’s so much to be thankful for!” It’s so fitting that Thanksgiving and Christmas are close to each other, in North America at least. We remember to be grateful, then we’re reminded to spread goodwill to all. Fitting, isn’t it.

Well, it’s time to say goodbye to Martin Cummins Week. But we can’t do that without a #FlashbackFriday moment for Henry Gowen. When I asked for votes on which moment to feature, the consensus seemed to be the trial and the surrounding events. I thought about doing a highlight on an evil moment, but I didn’t think you die hard Henry fans would ever forgive me!

You know one thing I found interesting about this series of events is Bill’s attitude. He himself said to Abigail, “It’s my job to see the bad in people.” But when he hears of the judge’s reputation, he becomes very solemn, and tells Abigail the news with a very concerned face. But when the judge is extremely lenient, (even you screaming fan girls HAVE to admit Henry got off super easy!), Bill goes back to the same old Bill: “That man has more lives than a litter of cats!”

But seriously, he DOES! Was it Bill or Jack who said that Gowen always has a way of “landing on his feet”? I know it wouldn’t make for very good television to have Henry sitting in a cell for Season 5 and 6, but I really did want to see justice served…just a little. Yes, I do still believe in redemption, and I’m glad Henry isn’t behind bars. I just think Henry could help make up for his mistakes with a bit more of a severe sentence, even with a way to get out of it later. But oh well. He seems to have learned his lesson.

He BETTER have, with Abigail constantly sticking her neck out for him! But I think the trial was a good way for her to defend him, because she speaks both sides. She admits he’d made mistakes, and the situation looks bad because she seemed beholden. But she also gets the chance to say he deserves a second chance because there IS still good in him. (Now I sound like Luke Skywalker!) And in true Abigail fashion, she finds the humanity in the judge.

The very telling moment comes when Abigail visits Henry in jail. She asks why he stole town funds, which as the current mayor, I think she has every right to know. We see a glimpse into Henry’s past as the son of a share cropper. And we see more of the human in HIM when he admits his astonishment that Abigail “still seems to believe in him”…after everything he’s done. In the past, her efforts have fallen on deaf ears and blind eyes, but the culmination of her Good Samaritan kindness is finally rubbing off on him. He’s come a long way from the caged animalthat threatened, “I’m going to ruin you.” Now let’s hope he holds true to his promise to the judge to not make a fool of him.

Well, Hearties, I have some wrapping to do! My husband’s birthday is Sunday, and the anniversary of him proposing is tomorrow! We also get to be in our town’s Christmas parade tomorrow. Lots to do! So I better go, but I want to share something first. The pictures is a Kami Clements original. (HA HA!) I participated in a WCTH virtual camp this past summer hosted by Lee’s Plaid Pants. The challenge was to do an artistic representation of some kind depicting Gowen in Season 1, then Season 5. If nothing else, you can have a good laugh! I hope you all have an amazing start to December. Remember next week starts my new schedule, so I’ll see you all on Wednesday. And dear Mr. Cummins, if you read this, we all hope you had an amazing birthday week! This is Hooked Heartie, signing off! May your heart let your hope blossom!

 

      

Happy birthday to my sister-in-law! Wait, what? She’s not even a Heartie! But it really is her birthday too, so happy birthday, Shannon! Love you! And now…Happy Birthday Martin Cummins! It’s your special day, and I’ve got something special to celebrate it!

To quote the musical Les Miserables: “I am agog! I am aghast! Is Martin in love at last?” Wait, what? Okay, the last part is an add-in, but I still AM aghast! I didn’t think this was possible! I found a film…that’s Christmas-themed…with Martin in it…where he plays a GOOD guy…where that good guy is the love interest!!! Did we even think this was an option in this universe? 😀 Well it’s undeniable if you were watching Countdown to Christmas four years ago, less than a year after the WCTH series premiere. The film is called The Christmas Shepherd, and the character at the heart of the plot is Buddy, a German shepherd. Get it? Well, it’s very heartwarming, and we get a very rare opportunity to see Mr. Cummins in a new light.

One great thing about this movie is it starts out with good news. So many times, even in Hallmark movies, we get an early start on the bad news to jumpstart the plot; not a bad thing, but a breath of fresh air can be nice. Teri Polo plays Sally, a children’s book author and illustrator, and the film starts with her getting a book deal that will feature Buddy. We soon discover the shadow cast on the scene: Sally is a widow. No, she’s not a war widow; although I almost think that would have been easier because she would have been better prepared. Her husband survived 3 tours in Afghanistan “without getting a scratch”, then died of a heart attack while he was jogging. Tragic, isn’t it? Her son is a military man, away on a tour of his own. (If you’re one of the #POstables, then you’d recognize him as Danny, the young painter from the TV series. (But guess what! His name is Jack! A military and Hallmark man with the “J” name. We’ve never heard that before!) Sally has her sister to lean on, and they’re very close, but Buddy is her main support system. He’s a connection to her husband; he found Buddy and brought him home. Then a severe thunderstorm hits, scares the dog, and he runs off through a whole in the weather-torn fence.

Enter Martin as Mark Green: also a military man (the reserves), owner of a coffee shop where business is slow, father of one 13-year-old girl, and a widower of 2 years; not to mention a smoothie maker extraordinaire! The process includes a “smoothie dance” during the concoction of each beverage. His sister Greta, (who PLAYED Greta in WCTH Season 5,) owns a mobile animal adoption agency, and she happens upon the shelter that has Buddy. Her classic line is when Buddy and Mark spark a connection, so he asks Greta to bring Buddy along. She says there is “no room at the inn! There is no room in that van!” Cut to a shot of her getting in the driver seat, Mark smiling from the passenger side, Buddy panting in the middle. 😀

This is where I have a little trouble. When Buddy is found, he’s wearing a beautiful collar with his name on it. Granted, there’s no tag with Sally address, but the dog obviously belongs to someone. When Sally finally tracks him down via Greta, she regretfully tells her Buddy has been adopted. And Mark is really hesitant to let Sally even drive over to SEE Buddy. That doesn’t seem right to me; after all, Buddy is HER dog. But regardless, he does bring them together. They kind of share him: Sally receives companionship and inspiration for her story, and Mark and his daughter, Emma receive his soothing comfort. Buddy even attracts a bunch of shopping mall Santas into the coffee shop, then more and more people follow.

Pretty soon, they stop using Buddy as an excuse to see each other; Emma picks up on that really quickly! When Mark mentions to her that Sally is dropping by, she remarks, “Dad, you just saw her yesterday. Why is she coming over?” Sneaky little devil!

When they finally go on an official date, it’s full of fun banter. They’re outside, so there’s Christmas atmosphere everywhere. They pick up coffee, and Mark says, “This coffee’s good for a kiosk. You can taste the smokiness.” When he’s met with a blank look from Sally, she admits to not being a coffee connoisseur, and they share a laugh. When they’re both stammering, (which Martin does REALLY well in this movie) with awkwardness, they both agree dating should be banned, and laugh again. But the best part is when Sally points out ice skating, and Martin insists, “You wouldn’t catch me dead out there. Not this guy.” Her eyes go sly, and she practically croons, “Really?” Cut to her holding him up as they’re wobbling all over the rink. Next time Sally sees Mark, he’s limping terribly from using muscles he didn’t know he had. When she inquires, he playfully groans, “You did this to me. You’re a terrible person!”

Best part of his character: Mark doesn’t let Sally slip away. True to many of Teri Polo’s characters I’ve seen, (on Hallmark at least,) she gets scared, and tries to back away. He asks her to stay in their guest room so they can talk things out, and she won’t get caught in the snowstorm. She leaves. 🙁 Luckily her car has other ideas, and breaks down. She’s closer to Mark than home, so she has no choice but to call him for help. He comes immediately, without hesitation, and insists on taking her “home”. That’s when we get the kiss in the swirling snow, which is a pretty sweet sight. It just threw me for a loop seeing “Henry Gowen” kissing a woman. He managed to look sweet most of the time, but I will admit to my husband walking in and announcing, “Yeah, he still looks evil.” And his “Gowen voice” made a few appearances. But he did great. And I know plenty of Martin fans who would swoon at the sight of him kissing someone. Right, ladies? 😉

Well, once again, HAPPY BIRTHDAY MARTIN! I hope you had a great day because even though I’m not a Gowen fan, I’m still a Cummins fan. 🙂 Take care everyone! We’ll see you back here on Friday for the Gowen edition of #FlashbackFriday. This is Hooked Heartie, signing off! May your heart let your hope blossom!

Photo: Crown Media
Edit: Mary Schmidt

          

           

Even though Thanksgiving has passed, I’d like to finish out November naming blessings I have. Today, I’m grateful for people who have the thankless jobs: the police officers, the fire fighters, the garbage collectors, all those who don’t get their fair share of praise. Them, and the people brave enough to portray villains on a beloved TV series! HA HA!!!!

Alright all you Henry Gowen fans! This is YOUR week! HAPPY MARTIN CUMMINS WEEK TO YOU!!! I’ll come right out and admit that I’m not the biggest Henry fan, even though I have a great respect for Martin as an actor. In fact, I’d go as far as to say that me not liking Henry shows how good of an actor he is. Right? Right?…Okay, moving on! 🙂

Martin’s birthday is November 28, 1969, so he will turn 49 this Wednesday. Wow, the year before the big 5-0! I wonder what his plans are! Well, we definitely know a very time-consuming project that will tie him up professionally: filming Season 7 of When Calls the Heart! Because, of course, that’s going to happen, right Hearties?! Right!

He was born in North Delta, British Columbia, Canada. Don’t quote me on this, but I’m pretty sure he lives in Vancouver now. Like I said, don’t quote me on that because I could be wrong.

Martin was previously married to Brandy Ledford, whom you might recognize as Doyle from Kevin Sorbo’s series Andromeda. They were divorced in 2004. On July 12, 2013, Martin married Christine Wallace. With the two marriages, he has 4 children, 2 of which are beautiful twin girls. You may have seen a picture of Daniel Lissing holding one on each arm in the past; I understand he thought they were pretty adorable!

There’s actually a really hilarious story about children that I heard Martin tell from the Hearties Family Reunion #4. (No, I wasn’t there, but I did see a video. Ulli Jespersen, yours was my most recent point of reference, so thank you!) Martin talked about the fact that he always gets picked to be the scary guy/bad guy/killer. He said, “For whatever reason went I get on screen, it’s like, {hit table} [scary voice]: ‘That’s enough!’…So yeah, I don’t play a lot of good guys. And what’s up with that? I have 4 kids, and they are my LIFE!” And Kavan, bless his heart, he didn’t miss a beat! He busted out with, “But you HAD 9 kids!” SO FUNNY! But it’s true, he does make a really good bad guy!

So we know what he does professionally, but did you know he’s been a director as well? He’s directed 5 projects, including 1 episode of The Outer Limits, and 3 episodes of Poltergeist: The Legacy. And speaking of his professional work, have you ever heard him talk in an interview? His voice is COMPLETELY different from Gowen’s! He slips into a character/screen voice whenever he plays him. It definitely makes him feel more menacing! But hearing a light-hearted, easy-going voice coming out of that mouth…totally threw me for a loop the first time. I finally got used to it.

I haven’t heard him say what his favorite season is, but I have heard him say that he really likes the way his character is evolving. He also likes the way the writers have “caught on” to the chemistry between Lori and himself that they subtly play so we as the audience never know what’s going to happen next with them.

Last thing I’ll share is something I learned from the Season 5 bonus features. Martin got asked: “Who was your first celebrity crush?” He let out a huge guffaw, and laughed, “Jessica Tandy…I love the old ladies…what’s up with that?!”

Well, Hearties, that wraps up Day 1 of Martin Cummins Week. Martin isn’t on Twitter, and I’m not on Instagram, so if any of you who DO have it want to tell him to check out the posts this week, I would not mind a bit!

 

And a special thank you to Jennifer Stieger who took this picture of Martin at HFR#4 with Leah Hardwick and Tonya Guess on either side. Thanks, ladies! This is Hooked Heartie, signing off! May your hope let your heart blossom!

 

              

Good morning, Hearties! Are all of you in the USA, (or celebrating elsewhere,) ready for tomorrow? I’ve got cleaning and baking to do myself; gotta be prepared to watch the Macy’s parade without interruption, right? 😉

 

In the spirit of the anniversary milestone we reached yesterday, I thought I would share a memory post instead of a brand-new one. I am so grateful for the past, and the lessons we can learn from it.

This one also didn’t get very many visits last year, and heaven knows this film deserves it. So here is one of my first #WonderWednesday Christmas movie reviews: Home for Christmas Day!

 

 

Here you are on another fun-filled #WonderWednesday. Okay honestly, this might spur some tears because of the subject. We’ll be discussing my personal nomination for best Hallmark Movies and Mysteries film of 2017. The jury is still out on Hallmark Channel; I think we all know what it will be! And the nomination goes to: Home for Christmas Day. While the connection is, admittedly, a bit sketchy, (only one WCTH actor, and that’s Antony Konechny, who played Douglas Burke,) the story just spoke to me. It called to me, “Write about me, Kami! You must!” While we’re on the topic of Konechny, can we talk typecasting?!! A soldier leaving for war, and then reported dead? Where have we heard THAT before! But I gotta say, he is top-notch at playing “country boy turned soldier sporting a killer smile all the way”. And I love his name; I have a brother named Tyler.

Speaking of names, are there any 18-year-olds today named Betsy? I certainly haven’t met any; it strikes me as an older name. But there’s nothing “old” about that adorable actress who played her. She was perfect the whole way through! She played the outspoken and determined teenager to a T. I especially think she was great at the whole “high school girl freak out” thing. Those scenes were so sincere, it brought back lots of memories for me; I don’t know about you. since I’m talking about being perfect for a role, who else thinks it’s Catherine Bell’s destiny to play military roles? First, she’s a Marine in JAG, (which I loved!), then she’s an Army wife in DING DING! Army Wives. Now she’s played an Army widow. She definitely knows how to play the military! And fun fact for you: that picture of Catherine Bell holding a baby girl and laughing is her and her real daughter years ago during those long-lost JAG days.

Now, let’s talk relationships. They did a super job establishing them. The writers and actors alike could have rushed through them, and cut to the chase of him shipping out. But they took the time to really make you love the characters so you took the journey with them. For example, Jane and Jackson being old friends and so comfortable with each other was so obvious; particularly when he came into the house she was showing, and started waving the muffin aroma toward the client in true Cliff Huxtable fashion. The other perfect “friend moment” was when it looked like Jackson was leaning in for a kiss. Then he bent right past her lips to her ear, and mischievously whispers, “It sounds like the solenoid switch.”

A detail that makes movie and TV relationships really feel real, other than history, is the touching. I’m not talking about kissing, although if you’ve read this blog before, you know I’m always in for a good smooch! But kisses are an obvious choice for romantic connection. The little things they do in this movie like Tyler rubbing his hand up and down Betsy’s arm, and Jackson putting his hand to Jane’s head when he hugs and comforts her…Sigh! It’s just so sweet, and makes it so genuine

Okay, time for moments. This is chalk full of them! I’ll give you the highlights, i.e. my favorites. First one is when Tyler races to the rink, completely panicked that he’d missed Betsy while trying to get someone to cover his duty for him. It’s fun to see a guy you’re totally crushing on completely out of breath because of you. And the lighted path they walked on was so magical!

Moment #2: Jane apologizing to Tyler. She had enough guts not only to go to the base, but to not take no for an answer until she talked to him. Having had her own experience with the Army, she knows better than to leave unfinished business undone.

Moment #3: when they announce Tyler is dead at the concert. It’s timed perfectly, and breaks your heart into a million pieces. The performer in me says Betsy shouldn’t have left the stage when she has a solo, then I think, HELLO! HER BOYFRIEND WAS JUST ANNOUNCED DEAD! Who’s to say I wouldn’t have walked away. One other good thing about this is you can’t say it’s petty drama or a silly misunderstanding keeping the couple apart. It’s a very real situation. I’m big on that, in case you hadn’t noticed.

Moment #4: Jane’s “aha” moment that she’s been doing it all wrong. She’s so humble about it, and begs Jackson to forgive her, then tells Betsy what love really means.

Final moment: of course it’s the reunion. I thought my heart was going to thump out of my chest! Her shock, his quip about interrupting, his explanation, her finally getting the motivation to move, and that beautifully desperate hug that reunites them. PASS ME THE TISSUES!

 

Well, there you have it! My first memory post! Happy Thanksgiving to ALL of you, even if you’re not celebrating it this time of year! I will see you Monday for our Martin Cummins Week! This is Hooked Heartie, signing off! May your heart let your hope blossom!

 

Happy Anniversary, Hooked Heartie blog! It was one year ago today that I took a total leap in the dark, and started something I had no idea how to do! And several of you actually READ what I had to say! GASP! And so many of you have stuck with me as I’ve struggled, and tried to figure things out. Heck, I’m STILL figuring things out, and you’re still here! And you’re Hearties, and Postables, family, and friends and even cast and crew from both shows! I’ve even been granted an interview by some very special in the not-too-distant future that shall remain nameless for the time being. But trust me when I say, the prospect is very exciting! YAHOO! So today, I’m grateful for friends…in all shapes and forms! Long-time friends, new friends, older friends, younger friends, friends far and near, friends who are family, friends who are like family, friends I don’t know well, and friends I have yet to meet. I love you all, and if you’re reading this, you are definitely in my group of friends! And I love you all!

Now, let’s celebrate! I’ve got some fun things, as well as a big announcement 😀 Part 1: Something New. I want to expand the Hooked Heartie Guild! If you’re unfamiliar with that term, it’s the group you are a part of once you register on the page. But since it’s the anniversary, and you’re here reading this, you can have a special look at the Hooked Heartie Guild Oath and Handshake.

THE OATH

As an official member of the Hooked Hearties Guild, I vow I will:
Bake like Abigail,
Advise like Rosemary.
Play charades like Lee,
Enforce like Bill,
Stare like Henry,
Play like Cody,
Cuddle like Brownie,
Teach like Elizabeth,
AND
Love like Jack!
HONOR WHEN CALLS THE HEART!

THE HANDSHAKE

1. Shake hands

2. Hold hands as if arm wrestling

3. Hook fingers around each other

4. Make a heart with opposing thumbs and forefingers

Now we’ll know each other wherever we go. And no, the oath does not need to be memorized; I don’t even know it by heart. Now for Part 2: Something Old(ish). In honor of this wonderful series we’ve all come to know and love, let’s take a walk down memory lane. Here are my picks for the funniest and most memorable lines in each season. I would love for all of you to comment some of your picks!
S1: -Your presence could sidetrack an army! -Jack
-You’re the one, you’re the only one! -Jack

S2: -It’s the other knee. -Elizabeth
-I love you, Elizabeth Thatcher! -Jack

S3: -Ma, you can’t cook either. -Jack
-Waking up next to the one you love every morning. -Jack

S4: -Fairest Katie, I deeply apologize for being an utter GOOSE! –“Murphy” with Rosemary’s voice
-Take a walk with me. -Jack’s written word, read by Elizabeth

S5: -What is that smell? It’s a root cellar; don’t ask! -Lee and Bill
-From chalk dust to eternity, I’m yours! -Elizabeth

Did you pick the same ones? Do you have other choices? Well, whatever the case, I hope those brought smiles to your beautiful faces. And if you need reminders about where any of them happened, I’d be happy to oblige!

Okay, Part 3: Announcements. First of all, my dear friend Sarah and I have started writing our book! That being said, we need time to actually write those words. 😀 As a result, I will be reducing posts from 3 times a week to 2 times a week. During the season, we’ll have #MondayMusings to talk about the new episodes, and #WonderWednesday to discuss other projects/events of cast and crew, or to be introduced to new Hearties. In the off-season, we’ll still have #WonderWednesday, then I’ll also post on Fridays for either #FlashbackFriday or #FanFictionFriday. I might even post sections of the book every once in a while. We could certainly use feedback!

The exception to this new arrangement will be special occasions, such as highlighting cast and crew for their birthdays, for example. And that brings me to the final announcement: next week will be Martin Cummins week. It’s his birthday! So all you Gowen fans, which Gowen moment would you like me to discuss for #FlashbackFriday? And I might have a thing or two up my sleeve. 😉

Well, everybody, thank YOU for making this anniversary possible! I didn’t buy or make myself a new dress the way Wilma Lawson did for her anniversary, and I didn’t take a ride in a fancy new car, but I can’t think of a better way to spend it than writing and hearing from you! This is Hooked Heartie, signing off! May your heart let your hope blossom!