Bonjour, Coeurs! That’s the closest I could get. No, I’m not doing a French theme or anything, I just wanted to do something different to catch your attention in the greeting. 😉 So now that I have it, it’s FRIDAY! And welcome to yet another Fatherly Moment for #FlashbackFriday. If you read last Friday’s post, then you may or may not have caught a hint as to what duo is being highlighted today. Does anyone remember? Think “knuckle ball”…

DeWitt Graves and Caleb Dunbar! A beautiful example of how a blended family with rough beginnings can have spectacular results. And as an added bonus, DeWitt is introduced in the same episode we meet Billy Hamilton. “Why should we care?” you’re saying. Well, Billy Hamilton is played by actor Andrew Walker, and he plays lots of good guys too. Tomorrow he stars with Jack Wagner (Bill) and Josie Bissett (AJ) in Wedding March 4; that’s nice timing, isn’t it?

So, back to Dewitt. He really is such a good man; anyone can see that the first time he’s onscreen. It’s also pretty obvious that he’s made for Mary when he steps in to help pick up the cans she drops, then pays for her groceries. But there’s still Caleb to deal with. It’s rough being a man coming into a ready-made family, especially when the late father was such a hero. But DeWitt doesn’t give up! He’s smart enough to understand that he’s not just marrying the woman. Like any man trying to get in good with a young boy, he finds common interests with Caleb, then makes himself invaluable by teaching new skills in those domains. Good thing DeWitt’s good at them! He knows his way around baseball, and teaches Caleb the knuckle ball. A sure-fire way to strike out a batter? Every boy’s dream! And even though Caleb refuses, I think he was secretly impressed that Dewitt made his own lures.

Even though DeWitt scores big points, Caleb is quick to get frustrated with him at every turn, not to mention gets downright rude. But how humble was DeWitt to apologize to Caleb for “playing a pretend father” when he hadn’t really done anything wrong; and then he completely opens up about his past with his father taking off so Caleb understands why he wants to be his friend so much. Finally, the ice is broken, and Caleb allows himself to begin a friendship with him.

I love the way things come full circle at their wedding in Season 2? Do you remember what Caleb said right after Mary and DeWitt kissed? “I have a new dad!” All their hearts are mended, and they can be a family; a true happy ending. And with that, we’ve reached the ending of today’s blog. I do apologize it came so late; another crazy day. 🙂 Enjoy Wedding March 4 tomorrow, and I’ll see you Monday!

It’s Friyay! YAY! And not only is it Friday, it’s 2 days until Father’s Day. I’m not going to say what the kids and I are giving Will in case he decides to be nosy in the name of “checking on the blog”. Any excuse, right, ladies? You know what I’m talking about!

For today’s #FlashbackFriday, and in honor of Niall Matter’s new #JuneWeddings movie Love at First Dance premiering tomorrow, can you guess what Fatherly Moment we’ll be talking about today? If you’re thinking DeWitt Graves and Caleb Dunbar, you would be…DEAD WRONG! We’re talking about Shane and Phillip Cantrell.

I don’t know any fan of the show that doesn’t think Phillip is the most adorable kid ever! (Okay, besides the ones in their own family!) But isn’t he precious? I’ll never forget his little face when he looked up at Elizabeth and said, “ But what if we can’t live without you?!”, or his awful fear of having her taken away from him after she got married. He’s just so endearing. Too bad his father is such a tough nut to crack in the beginning.

At first, Shane and Phillip have a typical single father and son relationship, especially for back then. Shane isn’t indifferent to his son, but his existence is a little painful since his wife was lost in childbirth. And his attitude about work is not exactly rare. Many fathers are workaholics today. In those days, it was more about survival, always trying to stay ahead of the next disaster. He doesn’t remember how much quality time means to a child. I love how Phillip gently reminds Shane of what his priorities should be when he remarks, “I don’t mind this tent.” Shane is so focused on making more money, on providing for his son; but then realizes how much more content Phillip would be just with more of him around. It was so sweet that Shane made it to the carnival just in time to see his son win the 3-legged race. He even showed the enthusiasm he should by whistling for him. Then they go get the candy apples Phillip wanted so much.

I really like that the relationship didn’t get fixed with that one instance. And Elizabeth is a heroine in bringing them together even more. Men back then weren’t exactly famous for being emotional, which is why Jack is such a gem! And Shane’s personality is very no-nonsense to boot. Then losing his wife in childbirth on top of that emotional block is a recipe for cuddle disaster! The worst part is Shane didn’t even realize he was shutting Phillip out, pushing him away. Of course, staying out of their business is out of the question for Elizabeth. She gives it straight to Shane that he needs to hug his boy, and often. I find it very moving that she tells him details about Phillip that he should be telling her: his favorite book, how he drinks all his milk before his sandwich, and that he pronounces it “sangwich”.

The result? Did you see the smile on Shane’s face when he hugged Phillip inside the school? Not only did he look happy, he looked relieved; as if he was exhausted from holding back all that affection. He even comes to the point when he jokes with his son, even confides in him; as demonstrated when Phillip blurts out that his father kissed Nurse Faith. Now that’s what a father/son pair should look like!

Have a wonderful weekend, Hearties! Do something nice for your husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle, friend…whoever might be a father figure in your life. And all of you very secure men brave enough to read a blog about what’s considered a girly series, Happy Father’s Day!

Hello, hello all of you wonderful people! (I was going to say “ladies”, but I have seen a man or two on here before. 🙂 Well, it’s the end of another week; I hope everyone survived. Are you enjoying #JuneWeddings so far? I’m going to go out on a limb here and predict that we’re all pretty ecstatic for “The Perfect Bride: Wedding Bells” to air on Saturday? I know I’m greatly anticipating watching Pascale Hutton and Kavan Smith in action together again; and I’m very curious to see their characters as an established couple, not just a budding one. Exciting times!

And speaking of which, that brings me to my Fatherly Moment for the week! Can any of you guess, given my previous words, and the premiere this weekend? If you guessed Lee and Cody, you’re correct! Those have got to be some of the most endearing moments in Season 5…that don’t involve Jack and Elizabeth, of course. But moments involving children are in a class by themselves, aren’t they?

I think one of the best parts about their interactions is Lee is funny and playful with Cody without being patronizing. Let’s face it, he really could have been when Cody was mimicking his every grunt and gesture. Instead, he teaches Cody all about ledgers, and how to sign checks. And he does it on his level, with “a little levity”, as Abigail would say. He explains credits and debits, and in his hilarious way: “Credit, money in; debit, money out. Money in: good, money out: bad”. He’s also secure enough to admit: “Yeah, you’re right, it’s pretty boring.”

I think Lee recognizes how much Cody misses Jack, and the times they spent together. And Abigail and Elizabeth come right out and say how much Cody needs a man in his life to spend some time with him. He sure does that, all right! He invites Cody to eat lunch with him, and probably pays for it too! He even uses the VERY grownup phrase, “Let’s do lunch!”, right? 😉  But I think everyone’s favorite is when Lee shows up at their door to play catch with Cody. He handles it so well too. Instead of acknowledging out loud that he’s making a kid’s day, he makes Cody feel like he needs his help for the sawmill’s baseball game. What a guy!

I believe this is good for Lee too. You can see how flattered he is by the attention when he drops Cody off at school, (in plaid pants!). His smile is so big as he says, “Oh that’s nice,” and puts his arm around the boy. But I think it’s more than that. There’s a hole in his life, even if he didn’t realize it. And Lee’s had a soft spot for Cody for a while. After all, he brought him that autographed baseball after his honeymoon, (not a time when a man in thinking about some random kid from town!), and he gave Cody his late brother’s copy of “Tom Sawyer”. I think we can all agree that that was Lee’s best dramatic character moment as he emotionally recalled the similarities between Cody and Patrick, and it brought out those fatherly feelings. He’ll make a great father one day.

I promised you a surprise, didn’t I? Well, in honor of this fatherly moment, I’ll share a fatherly moment of my husband’s. His littlest son, Jack, turned 2 months on Sunday. I was going to do a special post then, but it seemed appropriate to share now. He’s such a great daddy, especially letting his son be dressed like this when he doesn’t really like the show. But, if he had to choose, his favorite character is…Lee. Fitting, isn’t it? 😀 Happy Friday, all! Enjoy Perfect Bride 2!  

 

Hellooooooooo, Hearties! And Happy HAPPY Friday! It’s especially happy since it’s a 3-day weekend! What are your plans?  We’re planning on a laid back and relaxing weekend, but that will definitely include my first day back at church, and a visit to my father’s grave…and putting away sky-high piles of laundry that got severely backed up while I had to stay down.

So, today is our final day of our royalty theme. I kind of struggled with this one. I knew I wanted to finish out the week with another royal post, but it had to be from the show because it’s #FlashbackFriday. I had already talked about Jack calling Elizabeth “William Thatcher’s princess”, and the whole Thatcher family being “practically Hamilton royalty”. No need to beat a dead horse. And then it hit me! What did Adam Miller, the lone survivor of the mine disaster, call his daughters? “Princess”. Bingo!

Did any of your fathers call you that? My  dad didn’t actually call me “Princess”, but he always told me I LOOKED like a princess when I would get all dressed up. There was this one time when I was about 10, my mom and I were part of a tour group exploring the ruins of Mexico. The family were were traveling with brought a friend of theirs, a sweet older man from their church. He told me the first day that he wouldn’t be able to remember my name, “…so how about I call you ‘Princess’?” It was the sweetest thing, and obviously, I’ve never forgotten it. I hope you all, regardless of whether or not you got called the actual title, remember that YOU are a princess. I quote the movie “A Little Princess”, “All women are princesses; it is our right.” So you think on that when you’re feeling down.

  I want to start with all the times Jolene, the oldest daughter, acted like a princess. She and her sister, Morgan Rose, had to deal with a lot in this episode; and Jolene had to be the brave older sister. She did this in fine fashion when Adam and Laurel were arguing about the prosthetic leg. She just sat next to her sister, and stroked her hair so she wouldn’t be more afraid than she already was. Since I was an actress, I have to mention when Jolene showed off her inner princess by performing in the  Founder’s Day play, even though her daddy was still missing. She broke when he came in the room, but hey! She’s 9! And I can’t say I wouldn’t have done the same in a similar situation.

My favorite time, though, was at the very beginning  when Adam came home. When he stepped out of the stagecoach with that peg leg, there’s a long list of ways a young girl could react. And what did she do? She ran to her pa with total love and acceptance. That’s a real princess!

Just for fun, let’s talk about the princes in this episode. Jack sure was a prince when he painted that incredible backdrop, right? But I think he was kingly when he spoke to Adam about returning home. He held himself with such dignity, talking about his painful past with his father, and making Adam realize how much his family needed him.

Okay, let’s be honest! Those parts are sweet and tender, but everyone’s favorite part is Jack’s “Prince Harry-like” prank when he “hid the stick of dynamite” by painting that likeness of them kissing on the backdrop. I don’t know what reaction is my favorite: when he knows Abigail has busted him, when he hurries to cover his paint supplies, his false shock, or his relief at not being discovered. To send you into the weekend, here is a hilarious fan-made video illustrating the humor and irony of that very scene.

 

All clips: Crown Media

Creator: Megan Maxwell

 

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!