Ho ho ho, Hearties! We’re officially past Halloween, so I’m repressing my instinct to wait until after Thanksgiving to bring on Christmas content. If I’m going to be a Hallmarkies podcaster, I think that instinct probably needs to get snuffed out. 😉

Okay, if I’m being totally honest this would be more of a Flash Forward Friday because it’s about upcoming Christmas movies. But it was posted last week, so THERE’S the flashback part. 🙂

So, to kick us off on the right foot, here we have Parts 1 and 2 of the Hallmarkies Podcast for previews of Hallmark Christmas movies. Keep in mind that this was recorded before any of them aired, and it’s just for fun, so enjoy it! Make sure you listen to Part 1 for the fun and goofy way we rate our anticipation of these films. YouTube isn’t working for me right now, but check it out for the videos. This is Hooked Heartie, signing off! May your heart let your hope blossom!





Happy Friyay, Hearties! I haven’t used that one in a while, I thought it was about time I did again! Welcome back to hookedheartie.com. It’s been a stretch of time since we’ve had a Friday post, so I figured we were up for that too. And perfect timing, because we have the perfect #FlashbackFriday: Milo Shandel’s favorite Mr. Jenkins moment.

If you’ve been tuning in, then you’ll know I recently had the marvelous experience of visiting with Milo Shandel. But remember, it’s “Meelo ShanDEL”. I can completely relate; if I had a dollar for every time someone has mispronounced or misspelled my name, I would be a very wealthy woman by now!

Anyone want to take a stab at what Milo’s favorite Jenkins moment is? This could either be totally surprising, or make perfect sense. In his own words, Mr. Shandel’s prime moment, as far as he’s concerned, is: “Taking the land.” Why? Well, he has a couple of reasons. Here’s what he said:

“The setting was just so perfect! It was a gorgeous day, and a beautiful field. Then Dan and Erin are galloping up to me on horseback like a couple of storybook heroes. It was amazing!”

From an acting perspective, Milo had this to say: “There’s this one moment when Dan tenses up, and almost reaches for his gun. You could feel the inner struggle of him being angry, but he’s a moral man who never would. It was great to play off of.”

When he talked about Jack reaching for his gun, that was not a detail I remembered. So what did I do? The only logical thing, of course! I went back and watched the scene! Jack is trying to remain calm. He knows Jenkins has him in a bind when the banker mentions the “demand loan”; you can see the defeat in his face. But Jack’s not giving in yet! He questions, “Why would you take it back if I’m paying on time?”

Jenkins has a very patronizing answer, (sorry, Milo!): “We have a business to run, and how we run it is none of your concern.” Jack tilts his head just so, as if to say, “Is that so?” or “Watch me!” Sure enough, his hand goes to the holster, but Elizabeth interjecting her interpretation of the happenings seems to remind Jack not to resort to violence with his wife present. However, his hand does not leave his gun for the rest of the scene, and his voice is as tight as a drum!

My favorite part about Milo’s performance is when Elizabeth explains (angrily under her breath,) the reasons. She’s figured it out! She knows that the bank has a “cash offer for the land, and the bank needs cash. Isn’t that right, Mr. Jenkins?”

Under the scrutiny of that accusatory tone, who wouldn’t feel a little guilty? Milo does this fantastic expression; he looks downright sheepish, even just for a moment; he knows his scheme has been discovered. But he immediately regains composure, and resumes the professional, authoritative air, replying, “It’s all perfectly legal, I assure you.” As if that makes it moral! To quote Milo’s thoughts on the matter, “Naughty, naughty, Mr. Jenkins!” But he does a heck of a performance! Good job, man!

And with that, I bid you a good weekend! If you’re tuning in to Countdown to Christmas before Halloween, something I just can’t bring myself to do, have fun! We’ll see you next week! This is Hooked Heartie, signing off! May your heart let your hope blossom!

Happy Friday, #Hearties! Well, here we are at the end of another week, and at the end of another month! Phew! It’s a strange feeling when a month has passed so quickly, yet the last week or 2 seem to drag on and on. Have you ever felt that? Well, I have a feeling that time is going to start flying REALLY quickly as we do a landslide into the holidays; and I’m including Halloween!

So as the month closes out, so does our spotlight week on Laura Bertram. I still can’t thank her enough for taking time out of her busy mom and acting schedule to give us fans of hers these fun little details about her and her life. She was a true pleasure to get to know.

Now! Her favorite Mary moment on When Calls the Heart! Any guesses? It’s actually not one you would think of: it’s not when Mary met DeWitt, or the dance. It’s not when Caleb brings DeWitt home for pie, the announcement of their engagement, or even the wedding. No, she picked a very little moment that proved to have a lot of depth in it! Here are her words:

“DeWitt fell in the tug of war, and Caleb went off another way. It felt like it was a crossroads for Mary. DeWitt was her future, and Caleb was…not necessarily her past because he’s her future too. But he’s what her life had been. So she had to make the choice, ‘Who do I follow?’ That moment really illustrated her inner turmoil.”

Blink, and you just might miss it, but it’s there! In S1E6, “These Games”, Caleb cheers, “Come on, red!” Mary is obviously perturbed by those words, because she vehemently claps louder, and shouts, “Come on, blue!” Then Caleb runs off. Mary’s head snaps to the side to see him go, but she makes her choice, and stands firm. The point is only enhanced further when Mary runs to DeWitt’s side, asking if he’s hurt after the fall, then reprimanding her son for speaking disrespectfully to him. Right before the scene fades to black, we see the aftermath of that decision. Caleb has walked away. Although it looks like Mary’s following after her son, her course is heading in a slightly different direction; illustrating the very tight rope she is walking. And of course, even if we don’t cognitively grasp all of this while watching, we feel the essence of the tension. That’s thanks to Laura’s amazing talent!

As I said last Friday, good thing we know everything turns out alright in the end.

Photo credit: mydevotionalthoughts  


Well, that’s a wrap, Hearties! Have a fabulous weekend! Don’t forget the When Hope Calls tweet fest tonight at 5:00 PST, as well as the encore presentation of All of My Heart: The Wedding to see the line-up of #FallHarvest movies. Then there’s Ruby Herring Mysteries: Her Last Breath on Sunday. I wonder if I’ll be able to review them; we’ll have to see if a WCTH or WHC member makes an appearance. This is Hooked Heartie, signing off! May your heart let your hope blossom!

It’s Friyay, Hearties! That means another episode of When Hope Calls! I confess, I’ve already watched the episode because I thought I had an event tonight. The event got canceled, but can’t be too careful, right? Let me just say, YOU’LL LOVE IT!

Now, on to #FlashbackFriday! I’ve mentioned that I made a new friend, Lara, when she answered my “cattle call” to watch WCTH from the beginning. Well, as I suspected, she’s “hooked”, of course! And instead of watching it on her own, she wants to witness the unfolding of events with me! So I have a perfectly legitimate excuse to watch the entire series over again, and watch the happenings transpire with fresh eyes.

We recently watched S1E5 “The Dance”, and I was struck anew by the scene when Mary Dunbar asks Elizabeth if she can borrow a dress. First off, it becomes readily apparent just how much this evening with DeWitt means to Mary – she is not the type to ask such a favor on a whim. You can see in her body language when she approaches the row house just how hesitant she is. But her desire to look beautiful and make it a special night wins over her pride.

We see a new kind of hesitation when Elizabeth brings her gowns out of the closet for inspection – Mary is completely overwhelmed! In her little world, nothing this fine has ever existed. She illustrates that shock when she cradles the dress like it’s made of porcelain, and declares, “I’ve never worn anything like this in my whole life!” She probably hasn’t seen anything like it either, judging by her reaction.

Then Elizabeth reluctantly brings up the subject of Caleb’s discomfort, and we get one of (in my opinion,) the most beautiful performances that Laura Bertram gave in her time on the show. The tears in her eyes, the tremor in her voice, it’s all so honest and deeply felt. Nothing surface about it! It brings me to tears every time I watch. Mary is such a quiet, private, reserved person, that the fact that she is opening up at all is mind-blowing. But she is, and she reveals just how amazed she is, (and how emotional she feels,) that any man is attracted to her again since her. She also manages to voice her fear that a chance like this probably won’t come around again, and she needs to secure Caleb’s future; she believes she’d be a fool not to.

But when one is set on a path, it’s hard to hear words of caution…from anyone. And even though Elizabeth is an objective voice in this matter, and has heard Caleb’s side of the story, Mary knows he’s “too young to see the whole picture.” Therefore, she has to convince herself that she’s doing the right thing for all concerned, and Elizabeth’s words of warning get in the way. It would be a pretty hard pill to swallow, borrowing a dress from someone with whom you’d had a disagreement, no matter how gorgeous. So Mary puts on her mask of pride again, and informs Miss Thatcher, “I’ll make one of my own work.” And she did.

Photo credit: Crown Media (from Pinterest.com)  


We all know that everything turns out okay, but the uncertainty both of them portray in this scene is just one of the reasons I love this show. They deal with issues, big and small, and aren’t afraid to express honest emotions dealing with those issues.

Well, time to go, and get ready for the When Hope Calls tweet fest. Have a wonderful weekend, and come back on Monday for the episode review podcast. And be sure to keep coming back, because the surprises aren’t over! Love to you all! This is Hooked Heartie, signing off! May your heart let your hope blossom!

Happy #FlashbackFriday, #Hearties! Are you all ready for another episode of When Hope Calls? Who’s already watched it? I have yet to watch it myself, so no spoilers! But I’ll be here on Monday with the recap and review podcast for you to enjoy!

Before we get to that, though, we have a very important loose end to tie up, don’t we? We need to find out what Carter’s favorite Cody moment is, and finish out his very special birthday week; he’s a teenager now! So, does anyone want to venture a guess as to which moment, out of SO many, that he chose? Well, here is a direct quote from the interview:


What is your favorite Cody moment? Why?
-My favorite Cody moment is when all the kids come in the saloon with Mrs. Thornton and I get up on a chair and start talking about how a promise should be kept about building the railroad and how promises are important and I want the little town of Hope Valley to prosper. It was great to have such an important monologue.



I thought this was a great choice! One of my biggest reasons that I personally like this one is because this was the episode in Season 5 right before #JackIsBack. We were all so antsy for Jack to ride into town the returned hero, that this episode got a little looked over. So it was a great opportunity for me to go back, and take a more objective look at it, and watch it through Cody‘s eyes.

Cody is definitely worked up about the whole railroad business. He even starts a shoving match with his best friend over the matter. Thanks to Elizabeth, it didn’t come to a head with blows, but it might have. He’s very defensive of Abigail and her standing in the town; he has a mother again, and he’s determined to protect his little family to the best of his ability; no matter what.

Elizabeth is very sensitive to the fact that Cody, and all the other children for that matter, have taken this situation to heart. Adults, then AND now, tend to have a “it doesn’t concern them” attitude; that they’re “too young to understand”. In some cases, that’s true, but I’m of the opinion that warning is better than mending. And Elizabeth handles the situation so well: she gathers the children together so they’re not by themselves at home, she does activities to keep them busy, she takes the children to the meeting when they prove just HOW concerned they are, and she asks Mr. Weston to consider the children: not a popular concept in that day.

Then the clincher: Cody stands on the table. Given his earlier emotions, he could have gotten much angrier. But just as his mother taught him to use his words and not his fists, she taught him by example that being calm and composed can have a profound effect on an audience.

Now, let’s be honest: in real life, business negotiations like this probably would not have worked out as favorably as they did in the episode; my husband was very quick to point that out. 😛 A decision like reneging on a contract more than likely would not have been swayed by a speech from a 12-year-old. But who cares? The message Cody conveys is one that SHOULD be used in more business matters: solve things with your word, and your word means everything. I also think it a wonderful turn of events that we find out Mr. Weston was an orphan. He knows, firsthand, what it means to be let down, and alone. He’s probably experienced adults breaking promises to him as well. So to take him back in time to his life experience, and to have him realize how life-altering it is “to have a loving hand to help show you the way”, I think that shoots straight to the heart much more than realism.

And if you watch the faces of the two women in Cody’s life, what do you see? You see a mother overcome with pride, seeing she must have done something right, and loving that boy even more. Then you see a teacher: completely blown away, overwhelmed that a child’s words could be so sure, so strong, so…mature. All those lessons on “doing the right thing” have sunk in.

Carter, you were right. That IS an important monologue, and on so many levels: emotionally, dramatically, morally. Good job! And happy birthday week! Everyone else, have a fabulous weekend! I’ll see you next week! This is Hooked Heartie, signing off! May your heart let your hope blossom!