Who Else Loves Hallmark's "All of My Heart" Trilogy?

The All of My Heart trilogy is Hallmark at its best.  Even though these aren't new movies, installments being released in 2015, 2017, and 2018, they air regularly on Hallmark Channel and deserve accolades.

I'm skeptical about sequels, but Hallmark manages to keep the momentum going strong in all three.  They are equally delightful!

Here's a quick recap, in case you haven't tuned in to the replays:

All of My Heart-2015


PLOT:  A caterer and a trader in the finance industry, who each inherit half of a country home, form an unlikely friendship while renovating the house.

Image:  Crown Media, United States LLC

All of My Heart:  Inn Love-2017

PLOT:  As Brian and Jenny prepare for the opening of their bed-and-breakfast, a damaging storm causes Brian to go back to Wall Street to raise funds for the project.

Image:  Crown Media, United States LLC
All of My Heart:  The Wedding-2018

PLOT:  As Jenny and Brian complete the planning of their wedding, a distant relative arrives in town claiming to be the rightful owner of the inn.

Image:  Crown Media, United States LLC

More Realistic Portrayal of Life's Struggles

Too many recent Hallmark films feature characters who are wildly successful in all they do, which isn't a very accurate portrayal of real life.  To succeed, there are often countless failures and struggles along the way.

The trilogy offers hope--work hard enough, and you can achieve your dream.  Success is rarely served on a silver platter.

Jenny (Chabert) is a caterer who works for a very demanding chef.  She takes his verbal abuse and criticism, all while dreaming of owning her own restaurant.  In classy Chabert style, she basically tells him to "stick it" once she learns she has inherited a country home.

Haven't most of us had a crappy boss at some point?  In your mind, you tell your boss of in a million inventive ways, praying for the opportunity to find a better opportunity to escape his or her control.  Being stuck stinks.



Throughout the trilogy, our couple faces these setbacks:
  • The house requires more maintenance than they can afford.
  • Brian (Elliott) is fired.
  • Jenny gains a big distributor for her baked good, but then loses them.  She gets an opportunity for another distributor but is ultimately rejected.
  • A storm ravages their home, and Brian has to freelance on Wall Street again to make extra money.
  • A relative stakes a claim on the inn, and Jenny and Brian have to find a way to pay her $126,000 for her share--money they don't have.
  • The strain of working apart causes Jenny and Brian to have relational issues.
Despite the struggles, our couple still gets a happy-ever-after ending, but the hurdles they encounter resonate with viewers, making vintage Hallmark movies a step above newer releases.

Have You Had to Revise Your Dream?

Although Jenny has always dreamed of owning her own restaurant, she revises her career path once she inherits the country home.  Instead, she opens a bed-and-breakfast and hopes being a professional chef will set her establishment apart from all the others in the area.

She is even open to Brian's suggestion to call her business a B & B & D--bed and breakfast and dinner.  Perpetually positive, Jenny considers the inn her "restaurant with beds."

Are you doing the work you always dreamed of doing, or have you also revised your dream?  Share in the comment section!

Did You Notice the B & B Are Two Different Homes?

If you watch these movies back-to-back, you will probably notice different farmhouses are used, not the same one.

In the first movie, Brian and Jenny can't agree on a color to paint the inn.  Brian wants blue, and Jenny wants yellow.  To compromise, they choose green.



In the second movie, many references are made to the "remodeling," which is supposed to make us not question that the house is COMPLETELY DIFFERENT.

Image:  Crown Media, United States LLC
The movie is filmed in the same location, but the first farmhouse was already reserved for a different production and unavailable.

FUN FACTS

  • The outdoor swing was actually built by the real-life homeowners, Bob and Kathleen
  • The gazebo Hallmark built for the wedding was gifted to Bob and Kathleen after Hallmark finished filming. 


Join Our Facebook Group

Our Facebook group is a fun place to chat with like-minded people who love Hallmark movies, especially ones airing during Winterfest, Love Ever After, Spring Fever, June Weddings, Summer Nights, and Fall Harvest.  We have trivia, quizzes, polls, discussion, Hallmark news, and periodic contests. If you aren't already a member, find us here:

Hallmark Seasons of Love Movies

Available on DVD!

This trilogy is one of Hallmark's best, and all three movies are available through Amazon in one set for a great price--the perfect addition to your Hallmark DVD library!

Hallmark's "In the Key of Love" QUIZ!

Starring:  Laura Osnes and Scott Michael Foster

Released:  2019

Summary:  A photographer finds out that her ex-boyfriend/ex-singing partner plans on attending the wedding that she's working, but they start to remember the good times.



Image:  Crown Media, United States LLC

Do People Plan Such Elaborate Weddings?

Posh weddings are expected from the rich and famous, but do ordinary people travel to islands, buy deluxe packages that include tons of activities for their group, and pay for a photographer to follow them for several days?

If you're planning a wedding any time soon, don't let your wedding party see this movie--it sets the bar way too high!


Weddings Rarely Go Off Without a Hitch

The most hilarious part of this movie is when the florist's refrigerator dies along with most of the flowers for the Colby-Robertson wedding.  Evelyn shares the news to dramatic music, as if she's dropping the bomb that a first-degree relative has unexpectedly kicked the bucket.  Jennifer dissolves into tears and runs away to wallow in her grief.

Come on!  The bridal bouquet survived--the rest are optional.

What unexpected snags did you face at your wedding?

My singer caught a cold and lost her angelic voice.  She managed to croak out one or two songs before she had to stop.  My pianist couldn't read music but always sounded like a professional musician; however, when we watched the DVD after the wedding and listened to the recessional, it sounded like a death march instead of a snappy tune.  Fortunately, it failed to set the tone for our marriage because we are still happy!  Still, our guests told us it was the nicest wedding they had ever attended.

Things happen, no matter how organized you are, and it's okay.  A hiccup in plans doesn't affect the happy-ever-after ending.


Inter-Racial Marriage

Did you know inter-racial marriage has only been legal since 1967?  

How do you feel about Hallmark showcasing an inter-racial marriage?

There's nothing in the Bible that forbids it, so it's not wrong.  Still, I know black and white couples who tell me it continues to be a real struggle.  It often doesn't sit well with either side of the family, and in many geographic areas, it's still highly stigmatized.  There are often cultural barriers to contend with, and bi-racial children face quite the conundrum.

Even though we're all children of God and the same color on the inside, I have to admit watching this wedding made me uncomfortable.  I like it much better when Hallmark pairs couples who look the same, no matter what color or race they choose for the leads and supporting roles.  You know who seemed least interested in the match?  Kyle--the groom!


Is Jennifer a Match-Maker or Not?

It is amusing that Jennifer, Jake's sister and the bride, goes to great extremes to make him and Maggie collide.  Jennifer works behind the scenes to make sure Maggie is the photographer and that neither she nor Jake know they will be seeing each other during the wedding celebration.

Jennifer pairs them up for the dance lesson, gets them to sing the song for the bridal dance, and includes Maggie in the wedding photos and festivities.  Jennifer even gives Jake a pep talk about rekindling his romance with Maggie.  

No sister has gone to so much trouble to bring two people together!

Yes, the moment Jake receives a text from the famous singer for whom he's producing an album, saying she loves his and Maggie's song and wants him to join her immediately to record it and then go on the road for a year, Jennifer strongly urges him to catch the last ferry to the mainland.  Jake wants to tell Maggie, but Jennifer pushes him out the door and promises she'll share the news.

When Jennifer relays this unexpected development to Maggie and sees she's upset, Jennifer tells her "sorry" and then returns to smiling and laughing as she enjoys the rest of her reception.  In other words, "I'm happy, but it sucks to be you, Maggie!"

Thankfully, Jake comes to his senses and returns, no thanks to his failed cupid of  a sister!  He and Maggie reunite personally and professionally.  Just a word of advice though--"Colby & Case" is a totally stupid name for a duo.  

A Look at Hallmark's "Love to the Rescue"

Starring:  Nikki Deloach and Michael Rady

Released:  2019

Summary:  When a free-spirited woman and an organized man meet after their kids insist on adopting the same dog, the single parents co-foster the canine pal.


Image:  Crown Media, United States LLC

Nikki and Michael Are Two of My Favorites, But...

I adore these actors.  They are a perfect Hallmark match, especially in one of my favorite Hallmark Christmas movies of 2019, Two Turtle Doves.   Their performance in this movie is equally amazing, but the story line is very weak. 

Imagine your child and a stranger's child want to adopt the same pet.  Would you agree to co-foster the same the dog?

As great as pet adoption is, people go overboard when it comes to humanizing pets.  Still, I think many would draw the line at dividing a dog's time between two homes, like it's a product of a divorced family.

Wouldn't it be stressful for a dog to keep switching homes?

No parent likes to disappoint their kids, but that's life!  Flip a coin, heads keeps the dog, the end.

Have you ever taken your dog to obedience school?  If dog training involves teaching owners how to breathe and speak to a dog calmly, then our culture is hitting a new low.  If only people would take equal interest in helping their fellow man!  It's easy being good to a dog that doesn't talk back or have a differing opinion.

The dog trainer comments on the flirtation going on between Kate and Eric, which leads to a very embarrassing and awkward scene that isn't believable.  Most of us would just say, "No, we're not a couple" and continue with the session.  The script, however, has Deloach's character flip out, make a scene, and trip over things on her way out the door.    These are the antics of a 13-year old, not a grown woman.


Kate Puts Her Daughter First

One message I love from this movie is that Kate is a single parent, but she vows not to date until her daughter is grown.  Kate's concerned Sophia will become attached to a man who will end up leaving.

It's not necessary to go to such an extreme as a single parent.  After all, once your kids are grown and have lives of their own, where does that leave you?  All alone?  

The difference in this story is that Kate puts her daughter first.  There's nothing wrong with dating if you're divorced with kids, but too many adults put their own needs above their children.  Once you have kids, they become your chief priority. Your dating decisions have a major impact on them.  Worried they will end up alone, some adults push their kids to the side and focus on finding a mate at the sacrifice of providing the love, attention, and stability their kids need.  It's selfish, and it can long-term harm to your kids, if you're not careful.

Kate is willing to take things slowly when it comes to relationship, and this is wise.  She's a good mom.

Sophia and Owen Become BFF's?

Sophia and Owen bond over the dog, try to connect their parents romantically, become best friends, and seem to consider themselves brother and sister.

This is a fairytale.  Not reality.

Can two families blend this easily?  It happens but is undoubtedly rare.  Many kids resent step-siblings.  Brothers and sisters who are joined by blood bicker and feud endlessly, so the quick bonding between Sophia and Owen is hard to imagine.

Speaking of Sophia, why didn't the hair department on set not style her hair to hide those ears?  Poor kid.

Image:  Crown Media, United States LLC

If You Have an Ex, Is He or She Like Liam?

Liam and Kate meet in high school at age 17 and marry young.  He's a photographer, and she's a creative director who makes animated films.  Despite their split, they are on quite amicable terms.

Liam babysits for her while she's on a date--not just his own daughter, but Eric's son!  Wow!  Is that a stretch?  When Kate is afraid to let things become more serious with Eric, Liam is there to counsel and encourage her.  He even brings her back a gift from traveling abroad during his most recent photo shoot.  

If you are divorced, can you picture yourself confiding in your ex about your dating situation?  Can you see your ex still buying you gifts?

A few of you are nodding, "yes," but most just laughed out loud at the thought.  

Hallmark even makes divorce look happy!

Dumbest Animated Short EVER!

There is much ado about Kate's incredible animated short.  Everyone loves her concept, and they all pressure her to transform it into a love story.  Kate is asked to change the end, but she realizes the beginning is what needs tweaked.

After all this hype, Hallmark makes the mistake of actually showing the short during the fictionalized Georgia Animation Festival.

In my head, I'm thinking this is going to be better than a Disney Pixar short, which is usually witty and entertaining.  Instead, we watch two lightening bugs find each other in a very rudimentary production.  Hallmark keeps a tight budget for every movie, but I could have drawn stick people on a pad and flipped the pages to show them using the toilet and it would have been more appealing.

It would have been wiser just to talk about the short and let the audience visualize it instead of disappointing us with something a precocious 8-year-old could have created.

If this is the kind of crap that wins you an award for "Best Short" and paves your way to the Oscars, we all have a shot at fame. 


Another Dead Spouse

Did you know the average life expectancy of Americans is 78.87?

You'd never know it from watching the Hallmark Channel, where spouses kick off in their late 20's and early 30's with alarming regularity.

For every story that involves one of the characters having a child, apparently divorce can't always be the reason, especially if it means being forced to include an ex in the plot.  Hallmark has to kill off spouses before their time, or make the uncle responsible for raising his dead sibling's child.

Favorite Movie Quote

When Eric tries to convince Kate to make her animated short a love story, he tells her that love is the biggest motivator for courage:

The world is a lot less scary when, no matter where you go, you always know where you belong.

People tend to take greater chances for love.  Knowing you belong to someone creates a safety net.  Would you agree?

If you still love this movie despite it's pitfalls, you're in luck.  It's available on DVD.


Join Our Two Facebook Groups

If you love Hallmark movies like we do, even when they deserve the occasional roasting, we have a lot of fun with these movies in our two Facebook groups.  If you aren't already a member, would you join us today?  You can find us in two places covering different movies:

Hallmark Seasons of Love Movies (focuses on non-Christmas Hallmark movies)

Hallmark Christmas Movie Magic (Hallmark Christmas movies only)


#Hallmarkies #HallmarkChannel #LoveToTheRescue

Hallmark's "Bad Date Chronicles"--Do You Have A Bad Date Story?

Starring:  Merritt Patterson and Justin Kelly

Released:  2020

Summary:  When a website blogger posts her own bad date experience with a rival newspaper editor, he decides to compete and publish his own bad date experience.

Image:  Crown Media, United States LLC

Have You Ever Had A Bad Date?

Conner Michaels and Leigh Ryness have plenty of material for their blogs because the bad luck they encounter on their first date hits epic proportions.

First, Conner's co-worker and BFF, Brad, spills coffee on his nice suit right before he leaves for his date.  He doesn't have time to go home and change, so he borrows Brad's extra set of clothes and looks like some punk, grunge rocker.  He's also shows up quite late. Next, the couple waits forever at the bar because their reservation was never made at the restaurant as intended.

Leigh knocks over a candle and sets their table on fire, so Conner throws water on her to extinguish it.  Conner escapes to the restroom to compose himself, but the door handle falls off, leaving him trapped, so Leigh pays the bill and leaves.

Whether you're single or have been married for decades, do any bad experiences stick out in your mind from your dating years?  If so, share them in the comment section at the bottom!  

Shoemall.com
I didn't get married until I was 33, so the extra dating years created a host of bad memories.  Here are a few:

  • There was the time a co-worker fixed me up with a guy who acted charming and tried to sweep me off my feet.  Next thing I know, he's stalking me because no one knew he was bipolar.  That was unnerving.
  • Another co-worker insisted her nephew looked just like Alan Jackson, the country singer.  Blondes aren't really my type, but since Alan Jackson was a handsome guy, I agreed to meet her nephew.  Turns out, he looked wizened and emaciated from too much smoking.  Nothing. Like. Alan. Jackson.
  • When one blind date walked up the sidewalk to my front door, I knew it was going to be a long night.  He acted nervous and jittery, like he just learned women existed, and we spent dinner in awkward silence because I could only keep the conversation going for so long.  Plus, his enormous Adam's apple stole the show.  He hoped for a goodnight kiss at the door, but I quickly darted inside and let Cupid know to discourage him from calling me again.
  • My dad thought he could do a better job picking men for me, so he fixed me up with a fellow law enforcement officer.  Don't get me wrong--I love our police and support our men in blue, but this guy was the stereotypical, arrogant, cocky jerk.  Instead of taking me to dinner in our small town, he drove us 45 minutes away, which meant a lot of awkward silence, since his favorite topic was himself, and he wasn't interesting enough to talk about all evening.
  • I started dating an absolute heartthrob, who seemed quite the romantic at first--until he knew he had me.  Then, the mask came off to show his harsher side.  We went horseback riding on his expansive property, but when our ride was nearly over, he gave my horse a command that sent it charging through the woods to the barn.  I was literally afraid for my life because I could have fallen off and been trampled or had one of the tree limbs I nearly hit gouge out my eye.  I figured the horse knew what it was doing, so I laid my face down on its back and hung on for dear life until it stopped.  
  • A local radio personality took me on a date to a World Series game with tickets he got from the station.  It was a chilly night, and he shivered the entire game.  Real men don't shiver.
I had to kiss a lot of frogs before one turned into a prince.  I am so thankful to be married to a good man because I never want to date again!

Blair

Worst Bosses Ever

Allison Richards and Milo Peters are the respective bosses of Leigh and Conner, and it's in their financial best interests for the successive dates of their employees to go awry.  They assume people don't want to read happy-ending blog posts, so they interfere in the dates to wreack havoc for headlines.

You might not like your boss, but has he or she ever pulled these stunts?

  • Keep calling your cell phone and the restaurant, pretending to be someone else, to interrupt your date.
  • Drop a ton of spice into your meal.
  • Bump your waiter's arm so his water spills all over you.
  • Set your dessert on fire.
  • Secretly unplug the karaoke machine when you're on stage to sabotage your performance.
  • Make your paddle boat sink so you get soaked.

It's a stretch for viewers to think unauthorized people would ever be allowed to get so close to the food or equipment to pull such pranks, but we ignore it because we're so grateful for a different Hallmark plot!

Allison even replaces Leigh's blog post with a completely fabricated account until her conscience finally wins out.

At the heart of Allison's and Milo's actions is greed.  We see it in our media in real life.  Greed makes publishers compromise their "journalistic integrity" and spread lies that often sell better than the truth.

At different times, both Leigh and her BFF, Erin, give Allison a piece of their minds, but the manner in which they do it would get most of us fired!

Opening Old Wounds

Both Leigh and Conner have wounds from past failed relationships.  When their interfering bosses convince each one they've been used for a good story, their past hurts rush back to stab their hearts all over again.

Don't we all have that happen from time to time?  Our hurt might not be the result of a failed relationship.  For us, it might be someone lying or betraying our trust, or an unkind word that lodges in our self-concept and makes us sensitive.

Just when you find yourself willing to overcome these attacks on your value and self-worth by taking a chance or making a fresh start, something always seems to come up to send us reeling back into the hurt.  How can this be prevented?  From a Christian perspective, I can tell you with assurance that when you know God and find your value in Him alone, the approval of others become unimportant.  When you understand that God can take all the crap life sometimes throws your way and turn it into something good, it stings less. 

How Old Are Merritt Patterson and Justin Kelly?

A common remark people make about this movie is that Justin Kelly looks like he's 12.  Maybe he just has the Dick Clark ageless gene because he's actually 27.  Merritt Patterson is 29.

Image:  Crown Media, United States LLC

Join Our Facebook Group!


If you love Hallmark movies and they take you to a happy place, please join our Facebook family!  You can find us here:



#Hallmarkies #HallmarkChannel #LoveEverAfter #BadDateChronicles 

Hallmark's "Love in Store" QUIZ!!

Starring:  Alexandra Breckenridge and Robert Buckley

Released:  2020

Summary:  Rival home shopping hosts with different selling styles are forced together as they compete for a promotion, but they find themselves having on-air chemistry.


Image:  Crown Media, United States LLC

Kids Like Watching Home Shopping Networks?

In this movie, Terrie Carpenter reveals being a TV host on SHC's home shopping show is fulfilling her lifelong dream.  Being a child in a divorced family, she always looked up to Sharon St. Clair, the woman in charge of SHC, because she was a woman who had it all together when Terrie's life was a mess.  Terrie always watched the show with her grandma and dreamed of one day having her own segment on the show.

Do kids like home shopping channels?

I liked watching shows with my granny too as a kid--like Three's Company or The Andy Griffith Show, but I would leave when it was time for her to watch Rockford Files or Matlock.  (Yes, I am dating myself).  Still, had she turned on QVC, I would have bolted like I was shot from a cannon.  

I find it hard to believe a child would find a home shopping channel anything less than the most boring program on Earth. Any kid who is willing to sit around watching something that dull should be assigned chores or sent outside to play.


Your One Wild And Precious Life

The line "your one wild and precious life" is the catchphrase David is known for on-air, and it's repeated throughout the entire movie.

This mantra is a call to action.  It's not so much about accomplishing some enormous feat as it is living life to the fullest, since it's so short.

It was originally penned by Mary Oliver in a poem entitled, The Summer DayI will be honest--I hate most poetry.  On rare occasion, I'll stumble across a good one, but I find most of it meaningless, like someone couldn't think of a novel to write, so they slapped a few lines on paper and called it an accomplished piece.  Whatever.

The Summer Day introduces us to someone who has been strolling through the fields, trying to make sense of life.  The speaker admits to being blessed, but says she doesn't know exactly what a prayer is or who made the world.  Her solution to the brevity of life is to make the most of our time.

A pretty soulless poem.  The author analyzes a grasshopper's actions and draws parallels to her own life to find meaning.  Pretty sad when you turn to a grasshopper for significance. These musings make me feel sorry for her because she clearly does not know God, and without Him, life is pretty meaningless and temporal.
 

Break-Up By Text

Nothing scares away boyfriends faster than a girl talking marriage.

Noah has been dating Terrie for two years and initially says he's still not ready to take the next step?  How much time does a man need?

Have you ever been in Terrie's shoes?  Dating a guy forever with no long-term commitment?  It happens a lot.  Many guys aren't ready to put a woman first.  It seems their priority list includes career, hanging with the guys, working out at the gym.  In other words, their top three favorite people are Me, Myself, and I.   If your man is getting the milk for free, he is even less motivated to buy the cow--not that you're a cow.

After a year, the future of your relationship should start coming into focus.  One of the biggest mistakes women make is hanging onto a relationship that is going nowhere.  Some guys are skilled at stringing you along to keep your hope alive so you stick with them, even though they offer you no promises.

Before you know it, life passes you by.  If you're single, don't let anyone rob you of the best years of your life.  

After Terrie presses Noah about their future, he breaks up with her by text.  That's what she gets for all the time and love she's invested in him--he doesn't even show her the decency or courtesy of dropping the bomb in person.          


In my mid-twenties, before I married my husband, I dated a guy I thought was "The One."  I ignored all the red flashing alarm lights warning me to jump ship.  He often alluded to us getting married, and then one day, after a year of dating and shadow promises, I received a letter in the mail telling me it was over.  A letter in the mail!  I didn't have texting then, or else he would have probably opted for that, just like Noah.  As if that wasn't bad enough, I learned less than two months later, he married the girl he had dated right before me.  Double whammy!  I digress.

When Noah finally realizes he let a good one get away, he tries to win Terrie back by proposing to her while she's on the air selling diamond engagement rings, but it's easy not to feel to sorry for him.  He had his chance.  

They say you sometimes don't know what you had until it's gone.  However, the right guy should know.  If you have to break up with someone to get their attention, or if they only want you back because they are jealous you're with someone else,  it's all about their ego and not about you at all.
 

Escape Room

Did you like the escape room scene in the movie?  It was a welcome deviation from the usual activities couples do together in standard Hallmark plots.

Do you remember how Terrie figured out the puzzles so quickly?

She said, The trick is figuring out what is stopping you and work backwards.

That line served as a great metaphor for David in the movie.

Words Tell, Emotions Sell

Words tell, emotions sell is one way David's selling style differs from Terrie.  She prefers to research each product to educate viewers so they can make informed choices.  David prefers to make selling fun and less informative.

Books have been written on how to tap into people's emotions for selling purposes--words that create urgency, words that make something "exclusive," words that evoke anger or fear, or words that offer reassurance.  Marketers are trained on the right power words to use to get the desired response.

When we want facts, it's easy to Google the boring details. When you're watching something on TV, you enjoy engaging emotionally.  

Join Our Facebook Group!

We love talking about Hallmark movies in our Facebook group!  We share thoughts, fun facts, movie schedules, trivia, polls, and have a few annual contests.  Join our Hallmark Seasons of Love group!