Happy Friday, all! To quote Shane McInerny from Signed Sealed Delivered, “It’s a red-letter day!” I am without kids for 24+ hours “for the first time in forever”, to quote another movie. 😉 Even though it might result in me falling asleep at 8:00 pm, it’s still thrilling. My dear in-laws took my children for the night, so it’s my first free night in a long time. I’m excited!

Before I get to the topic of today’s Flashback Friday, I have a small favor to ask of you, my dear readers. You’ve been so supportive of my little blog, and of so many of my endeavors. Well, I have another endeavor I’m trying to get off the ground, and I’m calling on the Heartie army. Some of you may remember that fun parody music video I posted a while back. If you haven’t already heard, I entered that video in Jen Lilley’s talent contest Voices That Give, (at the prodding of friends). I made it past the first two rounds, but now I’m in danger of elimination. There are two days left in the round. I’m in 6th place in my group, and I have to move to 1st to advance. Can you help me? Please? The first vote is completely free, then you can purchase votes for $1 per vote, if you choose to. Then if you can share it with all your friends and family, and encourage them to use their free vote, I would greatly appreciate it! I went into this half-heartedly, but now I’m a little emotionally invested, I admit. Here’s the link. Thanks in advance!


https://orbiiit.com/entry/4860

NOW! Moving into tonight’s theme. If you remember Wednesday’s post, I told you there was going to be a change today. I know several of you were expecting the final installment of Rosie and Elizabeth’s friendship today, but there is a reason. It’s all summed up in a line Clara tearfully mutters to Jesse right before this shot is taken:

 

Eva Bourne on Twitter: "#Hearties ❤️what did you think of the ... Photo credit: Eva’s Twitter


“It’s my anniversary.” Yep! Tomorrow will make 12 years since these two crazy kids tied the knot.



So, since I’m feeling a bit nostalgic, I thought it would be nice to take a closer look at the #TeamClasse wedding.

Pin on When Calls the Heart Photo credit: pinterest.com

First of all, I will admit, I thought at first that Clara was not being very smart about “taking a break” with Jesse, even though I wasn’t exactly crazy about Mr. Flynn at the time, not with THAT hair. 😉 I thought, “Get over it! Don’t throw this away!” But I stopped myself, and I thought back to when Clara was helping Elizabeth through her grief, and declared that she felt cheated because she lost her husband only days after being married. I think how nostalgic I get every year, and I wonder how heartbreaking memory lane would be if my husband wasn’t here; not to mention if our lives together had barely started.

 

So then, I totally grasped Clara hesitance right before her wedding. Grief hits you in the oddest moments, then there’s the fear that history will repeat itself, and the thought of losing ANOTHER spouse is unbearable; unbearable enough to make a bride-to-be retreat into a shell. That’s what made Clara’s moment at the start of the aisle all the more powerful! All that history, all that emotion, all that doubt, all that hope comes bursting forward in with the declaration of one word: “Absolutely!” Clara has put all that sadness behind her, and is looking toward a glorious future with the second love of her life. If nothing else the look of love and awe upon seeing her in her dress for the first time is enough to drive any woman down the aisle and into his arms. I can’t wait to see Mr. and Mrs. Flynn celebrate THEIR anniversary.

 

Pin on • When Calls the Heart •    Pin on • When Calls the Heart • Photo credit: pinterest.com

And this is where I leave you. I hope you have a marvelous weekend, filled with that same kind of hope that fills Hope Valley. Take care of yourselves. Love to you all! This is Hooked Heartie, signing off. May your heart let your hope blossom!

Welcome to Wonder Wednesday, wonderful women! Wow! Say THAT three times fast! 😊 Well, we have arrived at mid-week again. How were the last seven days for you? Have matters of all categories and concerns settled down in your area yet? I hope so, or I hope they do soon. Well, regardless of your current circumstances, take a break with me, and revisit some favorite moments with me.

Speaking of which, that brings me to my topic of today; the second audience pick of Wednesday. This one is brought to you by Caroline Richardson. Not only did she participate in my Twitter question, but she’s also a friend of mine, and my co-host for When Calls the Heart recaps on the Hallmarkies Podcast. So, she knows what the audience wants, and she knows how my WCTH brain works. 😉 Thank you, Caroline!

Oh, right! The actual topic! That might be something important to reveal about now, huh? 😀 Well, Caroline’s pick, (one of them at least,) was to divulge my favorite episode from each season. I admit, this was pretty easy for most of the seasons, but the last two…(wince) those were trickier. It was actually pretty difficult. So, come along with me on a journey through time, through many different situations, and with several different characters. Now the question is, can you guess my picks before I disclose them, and do you agree with me? I’m warning you now: because of who I am, this post is most likely to be filled with romance and romantic scenes. So, if that’s not why you watch WCTH, (cough, cough!) you should probably quit reading now before your eyes roll all the way to the back of your head. (But seriously, do any of you NOT like the show for the romance? I didn’t think so.)

SEASON 1:
First up! There were SO many good episodes in this season! The triumphs, the heartache, the snark! 😉 But alas, there can only be one top pick. I will say that I almost picked the finale; the first kiss is a moment to be celebrated with gusto! And Elizabeth’s emotion at the children’s love for her, and the love she has developed for them, all of it is truly moving. I went with another choice…although you might find it just as typical. Episode 9: Change of Heart. This is…(trumpet fanfare) the big date! Stereotypical? Maybe, but it took my breath away! Everything was planned down to the tiniest detail, and the lighting was perfect to boot! He even danced with her! Be still, my beating heart! When Jack said, “I feel that my efforts tonight may pale in comparison,” I guffawed at the absurdity! Who could top everything he so thoughtfully carried out??? And let’s not forget how all our hearts skipped several beats when Jack declared, “Please consider this an act of courtship,” and KISSED HER HAND! Drop the Mountie hat!

SEASON 2:
Full disclosure: this one IS stereotypical! Season 2 was not my favorite. I was very glad I could binge watch it, because I found it pretty tough to get through. I call this season “a necessary evil”. I understand the necessity for it, I really do. But I cringe a lot while watching. So, my favorite episode for this season is Episode 10: With All My Heart. Can you think of anything more heart-pounding than that Indiana Jones rescue, rolling her away? Maybe him lifting her like she weighed “no more than a dried leaf” (Sense and Sensibility). Sigh! Then, after that show of bravery, Jack can barely gather the courage to examine Elizabeth’s knee without his hands shaking. 😉 “It’s the other knee” has become a very common phrase in my home. But of course, the best part is the declaration of “I love you, Elizabeth Thatcher,” followed by that beautifully passionate kiss. This is why Season 2 was needed. That pronouncement would not have meant nearly as much without the experiences the two of them had to go through to get to that point.

SEASON 3:
This season is truly one of my favorites, at least when Jack is in the picture. I liked seeing our favorite couple in a settled, loving relationship without jealousy or misunderstanding barring the way. I was just upset that they didn’t say “I love you” more, especially when Jack rode off to a dangerous rescue mission. All that being said, you can understand my difficulty in choosing one episode. I like so many parts of all the episodes: watching Lee and Rosemary fall in love, meeting Edith and witnessing her reunion with Roy, seeing Jack’s mother for the first time, feeling Rosemary’s inner turmoil as she gives up her dream wedding…the list goes on and on. But I’m going to have to go with Episode 3: A Time to Speak. I just LOVE the campout! We meet several kids who become regulars, and it’s nice to see Elizabeth and Jack having a little casual fun after so many intense and serious exchanges. Put aside what we know about how the show turns out for a minute, and who doesn’t love hearing Jack talk about their future together, and seeing the first kiss of the season in such a romantic setting??? Moving away from romance, I really like Frank being redeemed. It’s what Hope Valley’s all about.

SEASON 4:
Do you even need to ask? I screamed so loud and jumped so high when Jack dropped to one knee that I woke my newborn son, and momentarily hurt my recovering body. Don’t worry, I recovered. But I don’t know how that proposal could have been better! Obviously, a LOT of thought and planning went into it, it was a surprise, Jack used nostalgic inside references in their relationship, it happened in front of the school he built for her, and there were CANDLES AND ROSE PETALS!!! What woman alive wouldn’t want the man she loves to propose to her in such a loving way?! The other thing I love, and this is just a personal opinion, is the way they say “I love you.” First of all, it had been FOREVER since they’d said it outright, and it was about time. The other thing is neither one said, “I love you, too.” I’ve always felt that sounds like an afterthought, a copycat sentiment. I know it’s not meant that way in most programs and movies, it’s just how I hear it. So, I really like that they just declared their love for each other, no afterthought present. By the way, that’s Episode 7: My Heart Will Go On, in case you’re wondering.

SEASON 5:
Once again, need you ask? Episode 6: My Heart is Yours. The wedding ALL the way! ‘Nuff said.

SEASON 6:
Okay, here’s the other part when it gets hard! Because now we’re contending with two men where Elizabeth is concerned, and because it became more of an ensemble show, all the characters become a bit more well-rounded. Therefore, IT’S HARD TO PICK!!! For now, at least, my favorite episode in this season is Episode 9: A Call From the Past. This episode had a ton of suspense in it, more than we’d seen for a while. We also get a chance to see Nathan really be a Mountie, and Lucas pounce like a tiger when Elizabeth is threatened. And I’m not going to lie, that hand brush in the library with Nathan and Elizabeth was a little steamy. But something I REALLY like is Nathan and Lucas have a very long and meaningful conversation, and develop a kind of mutual respect for each other, since their feelings for Elizabeth haven’t fully developed yet.

SEASON 7:
Episode 6: An Unexpected Gift. This might change tomorrow, but for now, I’ll stick with it. This episode is just bonkers…in a good way. I was pretty certain that neither man gave her the original bouquet, but it was hysterical seeing them compete with no need. On top of that, who can resist protective Bill trying to play investigator again, and figure out who’s paying Elizabeth so much attention. And that scene with the two of them in the café…laughed my head off at their sad attempt to talk in code. But the best parts were: 1) the fact that Rosemary gave her dear friend a bouquet of flowers because she was having a down day. So sweet! 2) It made me giggle (and I was tickled!) that both men stepped up to the plate, and took the initiative to give her flowers themselves.

Well, that’s it for now. Now you’ll have to tell me what YOU’RE favorite episodes are. I’ll see you on Friday. WARNING! I got a little inspired, so we’re taking a break from the Friendship series. See you then! This is Hooked Heartie, signing off. May your heart let your hope blossom!



Happy Friday, all! I hope your week is turning out the way you want it. This was the last week of school for some of you, I know, so maybe that will help. It’s funny. When Kristoffer Polaha was kind enough to bring me on as a guest on his weekly Instagram LIVE video, Polaha Chatauqua, he asked me if having the kids done with school would make things easier or harder. I said, “That’s a really good question.” I didn’t have an answer at the time, but now I think I do. It’s a different kind of harder. My girls did have something to do with school work, it’s true, but I had to stay right beside them to read assignments to the kindergartener, and make sure the 3rd grader actually DID the work. So, even though I have to be a little more creative, we don’t have deadlines, and I don’t have to keep the boys away from the girls as long. 😉 But, involving all 4 children more often makes for more arguing, so I guess you give a little, take a little.

So moving on to this week’s #FlashbackFriday, the third part of the incredibly odd, but incredibly strong friendship between Elizabeth and Rosemary. We started at Bumpy Beginnings, passed through Reluctant Respect, and now we’ve arrived at:

Part 3: Feisty Friends
Admittedly, this is a tiny step up from Reluctant Respect. There’s still teeth-gritting, and “dealing” with Rosemary’s antics, but this time, there are genuine feelings of care behind those forced smiles. Take the Mountie Christmas Ball, for example. Elizabeth is less than enthusiastic to borrow a gown from Rosemary, but she’s still comfortable enough to accept. (The fact that Elizabeth is BORROWING a dress instead of buying or ordering one shows what a Hope Valley woman she’s become.) Rosemary is more than happy to play fairy godmother, but she shares a little too much information dealing with alterations, remember? Then Rosemary tries to push herself onto the Christmas festivities, but Elizabeth “handles her” by assigning her menial tasks like stringing popcorn. Elizabeth knows she can challenge Rosemary because Rosemary doesn’t want to be outdone. They push each other’s buttons, but they wouldn’t hurt each other for the world. And despite the slightly rough journey, it sure has a beautiful ending result!

Another instance when Rosemary’s overbearance is done completely out of love, when you want to shake her and hug her at the same time…it’s Jack and Elizabeth’s wedding. Oh, Rosemary! We love you for being so passionate about wanting to make this long-awaited celebration sensational, but wouldn’t it be a good idea to listen to the bride and groom? But, I will say, that passion and drive came in very handy when tragedy struck, and Hope Valley pulled together to create another wedding, almost from scratch. Who was in the middle of the group giving orders, albeit gently, and even took apart her own wedding dress to save Elizabeth’s gown? Maybe Rosemary is “a little much”, but in this case, it’s a good thing. It got the job done.

Okay, last one. This is where I really gleaned the “feisty” from. If you recall, a certain, VERY determined woman who couldn’t wait for proper lessons in…transportation nearly caused a very damaging mishap. And when said woman refuses to take responsibility for her actions, she flies into a fury, announces she’s staying with Elizabeth, then proceeds to beat up her hostess’s pillows. Then Elizabeth takes the kids gloves off and for only the 2nd time up to that point that I remember, she tells it like it is. Elizabeth finally gets it off her chest that Rosemary “can be a giant pain in the…side.” I bet that felt good. The way Elizabeth rolled her eyes as it came out, you know she’s been holding it in for a long, LONG time. But Rosemary needed to hear how good she’s got it; she needs the reminder of what a wonderful husband Lee is to her. And Elizabeth is glad to oblige! I really think this is a turning point in their relationship. Elizabeth boldly states what Rosemary needs to hear, and Rosemary actually listens. Now, THAT’S friendship!

Well, everyone, it’s been real! In the spirit of friendship, especially after reading this, let’s all remember what true friendship looks like, and how we should be treating one another. Take care, everyone! Love to you all! This is Hooked Heartie, signing off. May your heart let your hope blossom!

When Calls the Heart': The Show's Costume Designer Dishes on How ... Photo credit: Showbiz Cheatsheet 

Happy Hump Day, Heartie People! How’s your week going so far? You hanging in there? Who’s still in school? First of all, thank you to all of you who responded and contributed to my tweets and posts about topics you want to see discussed! I’ve got ideas for weeks now, and it’s always so helpful knowing what the audience wants to read, instead of just blah blah blahing my way through a post that nobody’s interested in. So here we go! First audience-picked theme of #WonderWednesday is on the move! Please keep your hands and head inside the stagecoach at all times.

The first topic is……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. “What WCTH Has Meant to Me”, requested by Jess @Greenbay531. Not only is this topic really inspiring; it also meant a lot to me because Jess is one of the organizers of the Tuesday night tweetfests #WeAreHopeValley. She was so warm and welcoming, and so happy I could make it the one time I could. So I’m happy to share! But, oh gosh! Where do I begin???

I guess, to quote one of my favorite musicals, “Let’s start at the very beginning, a very good place to start.” The inception of my Heartie fandom IS in the Hooked Heartie FAQ’s, at least in part, but it’s more fun to tell it here! I found When Calls the Heart when I was pregnant with child #3, my 1st boy. Oh, the insomnia was BAD. I spent many nights with Netflix on, just trying to find something boring to put on the TV to help me fall asleep. When that failed…AGAIN, and I finished another show, I saw WCTH on the suggestions. I had seen promotions for Season 3 on Hallmarks, but I’d told my husband I didn’t want to sink myself into another show, and I didn’t want to start a show in the middle; that never bodes well. So when I saw it on Netflix, and the sandman was NOT visiting me, I decided, “Why not?” So I tried an episode, and that led to another, and another, and I couldn’t stop! I was enthralled, or rather, “hooked”. For the first time in my life, I binged a series so I could get caught up. And I’ve been a fan ever since.


 

That’s how it started. Now, what does it MEAN to me? So much! There have been so many wonderful effects that I have gleaned from watching this show! One of them is what you’re reading right now. The blog was actually my husband’s idea. I had never even FOLLOWED a blog before, and he wanted me to RUN one. I thought he was crazy! But he reminded me that rule #1 of owning a blog is to be passionate about the subject. Well, I had that covered! 😉 Then, having a blog led me to interviews with the stars, (like Madison Smith, Laura Bertram, and Milo Shandel to name a few,) it’s how I met Paul Greene(!), and it’s how I got involved with the Hallmarkies Podcast. And there have been doors opened by the hundreds for me by getting in with that crowd; only one being that I’ve gotten to know the wonderful ladies there, and several of us have become quite close. Oh, and as a little aside to this one, I opened a Twitter account because of the show. I’ll just leave that there. 😀

 

             

Getting a little bit more personal, I’ve made so many new friends through the show. There is someone in particular I never would have met. Her name is Sarah, Sarah Nitsch. You know her, we write stories together that I’ve posted here…among other things. Behind the scenes, she’s one of the best friends I’ve got! She was the first person I told I was pregnant with child #4, even before I confirmed it to my husband, (don’t worry, he pretty much already knew.) Behind every brilliant post here, you can find her influence or one of her ideas somewhere down the line We support each other through walks of life, we send each other Christmas and birthday presents, we laugh together, we cry together, and oh yeah, we’re WRITING A NOVEL TOGETHER. We started out by writing WCTH fan fiction stories, and now we’re involved in several projects that we have every intention of seeing through to the end.

Sarah proudly wearing a ‘beguiling’ piece of jewelry that both surprised and delighted her on her birthday


Which brings me to my next point. This show has inspired my creativity, really gotten my creative juices flowing. Because of this show, I started writing, and I started taking more chances, and started being bolder, and started believing in myself. Never in my LIFE would I have thought I would become an author! I remember the first time I posted something I had written on the Hearties Facebook page, and got a HUGE response. I wasn’t even really trying. I was so shocked, so I decided to really try, and see what happened. My mind came alive; I hadn’t felt that inspired in a long time. But I was nervous to show my husband. He doesn’t like the show, so I thought he’d just laugh if he read my work. When I finally let him have a look, I cringed and braced for impact. He read through it, put it down, and said, “I think you should write a novel.” He went out and bought me several spiral notebooks, and encouraged me to keep on writing.

Finally, this is just my kind of show! From the very first episode, I felt a connection to the characters, and I loved the feeling each episode left me with. My dear friend, Amy, (one of MANY friends I introduced the show to,) explained it so eloquently: “Every time I finish an episode, I just feel *content sigh*.” But it’s true. It’s heartfelt and compelling; there’s just enough suspense to keep you going, but none of the language, or sexual and violent smut that’s so rampant out there. And it’s SO ROMANTIC! As a hopeless romantic myself, I was such a sucker for the entire Jack and Elizabeth. I lapped it up, and literally, (yes, literally) screamed when he finally proposed. I was so invested that my friends knew to throw me a WCTH baby shower, and I even named my child after him, (partially, because it’s his only his nickname,) Sarah sent me a WCTH maternity shirt, and a knitted Mountie costume for him. I was pretty devastated when Jack died; sometimes I cried like I had lost a family member. But I’ve remembered that it is only a TV show, and life does go on. I have been very pleased with the way the show has thrived despite its losses.

       

In short, When Calls the Heart means a WHOLE LOT to me. It’s a wonderful show that I love to watch, it has inspired me to do so many things, and I have met some wonderful people. It gives me something to look forward to, something to talk about with friends, and even a way to start up conversations, and make new friends. So now it’s your turn. The comments don’t work her on the blog, but comment wherever you saw this posted. What does WCTH mean to YOU! And thanks, Jess, for the contribution. This is Hooked Heartie, signing off. May your heart let your hope blossom!

  Photo edit by: Randi Elkins

Hello, my friends! Here we are again at Flashback Friday. I sincerely hope this finds you all well; it’s been a trying couple of weeks. There’s so much turbulence out in the world right now, and some of you haven’t even finished up the school year yet. I imagine you may be feeling very overwhelmed. So, take this time to sit down, lay your head back, close your eyes, take a breath, and escape on another trip to Hope Valley. Take a break from all the tension, and continue on this journey with me where we explore another aspect of the relationship that is the friendship of Elizabeth and Rosemary. This second stage is the one I find the most humorous. They’re not enemies, and they’re not one another’s competition. Elizabeth isn’t calling Rosemary names like a destructive comet anymore, and Rosemary isn’t sabotaging Elizabeth’s romance with Jack anymore. But they’re not quit confidantes yet. There’s still a certain amount of…dealing going on between these women.

Part 2: Reluctant Respect
This level, I think, has the most aspects to it, besides our currents one. It’s the stage that takes the longest to get through; and in some cases, can be even more grueling than those “Bumpy Beginnings”. Here, they’re kind of thrown together; yes, they are friends, but there’s still a certain amount of “dealing” going on. The first time I personally felt the relationship take a REAL turn, instead of merely dodging a bullet, was in the mercantile when Rosemary is trying to decide her path. Never would she EVER believe that a school teacher could give a famous actress such sound advice as to follow her heart, but she reluctantly admits that the educator taught her a lesson. But attitude wise, that’s pretty mild.

Take, for example, the writing of the wedding place cards. This scene is just a BIT more emotionally charged. Rosemary was getting on Elizabeth’s last nerve. By the way Elizabeth gruffed, “How about THIS one?” who knows how many labels she had written already?! And Elizabeth was just not living up to Rosemary’s standard of calligraphy. They still like each other…just not right now.

Elizabeth looked positively mortified when she found out the Coulters were moving right next door to her. All that boisterousness she had managed to endure, and now, it’s about to become part of her daily, and nightly, life. I don’t know which is worse: the handwriting exam, or the “paper thin walls” Rosemary feels the need to tear open so often; and so often, it’s when Elizabeth and Jack are having a moment. Yeah, I would have locked her my door too! I don’t know why she never did.

There are a million other examples, I know, but that would make for a pretty long blog. Let’s end with when Rosemary becomes a true Hope Valley woman through deeds, not just words. And she’s definitely reluctant! But I think Elizabeth, and everyone else for that matter, gains a deeper respect for this flamboyant woman who has dropped herself in their midst. You know what I’m talking about; when the almost-Mrs. Coulter gives up her first-class wedding to aid her fellow townspeople and the refugees by the river in First Aid treatment and nourishment. Not only did she act unselfishly for the sake of all those involved, she found out for herself that she had it in her, that she could act in someone else’s best interest, and not just her own. With that revelation, Rosemary becomes a true Hope Valley woman, and is therefore able to be on more friendly terms with all of them. But we’ll talk about that next Friday. 😊 This is Hooked Heartie, signing off. May your heart let your hope blossom!


Interview: Pascale Hutton | Where calls the heart, Heart clothes ... Photo credit: pinterest.com