Thursday, February 1, 2018

TV Show Review: 'Murder She Baked'

Murder she baked

At the end of a long day, Mr. Handsome and I enjoy cuddling up on the couch and watching a wholesome, entertaining TV show or movie. We're always on the lookout for new recommendations.

A couple years ago, I told you about the TV series Monk. You're going to laugh when I tell you that we watched the first episode the evening of Mr. Handsome's first day at his first job (just one day after flying in from our honeymoon), and we watched the last episode two years later (almost to the day), the evening before his last day at that job. It was a fitting way to close that chapter of our lives.

Back in early December, I was trying to come up with Christmas gifts for Mr. Handsome's two youngest siblings, Mae and Lena, who are teenagers. (My husband is the oldest of seven, and it makes me so proud to see what a great role model, leader, and encourager he is for his two brothers and four sisters.)

Mae and Lena love the Hallmark series When Calls The Heart, as do we, so I decided to let them try out a new Hallmark series, Murder, She Baked. Based on a New York Times bestselling book series by Joanne Fluke, it takes place in the quaint town of Eden Lake, Minnesota. The main character, Hannah Swensen, owns a bakery, but she also becomes involved in solving murders when one takes place outside her shop.

I purchased the first two Murder, She Baked DVDs, and Mr. Handsome and I watched them before giving them to the girls, just to make sure they were appropriate. Not only were they appropriate, but they were also entertaining and lighthearted. We recommend them for teenagers and adults, as most younger children would not understand the plot.

Be sure to watch A Chocolate Chip Cookie Mystery first--that's the pilot episode.


66 comments:

  1. Anonymous2/01/2018

    At some point, teenagers have to have people stop screening things for them, and have to learn how to handle the fact that not everything in the world is "appropriate."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Right on schedule with your negative comment. LOL. :) I really am flattered that you follow my blog so closely that you comment on every post immediately after I put it up. (As someone who is trained in the craft of writing, I am able to recognize that all of your comments have the same "voice.") But I do have to ask, why invest the time reading a blog that you don't enjoy?

      Hope you have a wonderful evening. :)
      Ellie

      Delete
    2. Anonymous2/01/2018

      Good for you Ellie. I have a sister in law who did not have things screened or really monitored and she is about to turn 18 and has went through more things then she should have in her lifetime. So I think it's wonderful that you and Mr. Handsome take the time out to make sure things are appropriate . It shows how much you love them. I am a big reader so I am going to look into the books and maybe the dvds to. Thank you for sharing and for all you do!

      Delete
    3. Anonymous2/01/2018

      You're pretty slick, Ellie! 😊 Sorry you have to put up with annoying comments from those who hide behind “Anonymous!” You do a great job with all of your blogs! -Grace

      Delete
    4. Anonymous2/01/2018

      I have recognised this "voice" here and on your other blogs and one other one as well. I studied English and Psychology at university and my career involved a lot of writing. Many times, this "voice" creates its own false invalid belief and then goes on to agree with themself! Maybe this "voice" could lend itself to more constructive actions. Eileen

      Delete
    5. Anon who thinks teens shouldn't have their movies screened,when our girls were teens we screened all movies before we let them watch if there was a concern. Our daughters are grateful for us doing that. And at my age I will check a movie or tv show through Common Sense Media to see if appropriate for me to watch.

      Delete
    6. Anonymous2/01/2018

      You tell her Ellie!

      Delete
    7. Anonymous2/01/2018

      Maybe the Lord leads the comment writer. We are not supposed to quench the work of the Holy Spirit. And let us not think of ourselves as more weorthy, better, or more self righteous than others who read this blog. We are all in need of the grace, mercy and love of God. The Lord might be drawing this person to know HIM. If we do not respond to the Holy Spirit our chance to respond may be gone, we are not to assume that we will have another time to follow the leading of the Lord. Encourage all readers to follow and seek and find the Lord and don't sarcastically encourage them to turn away to the darkness. God bless you and Mr Hansome and thank you very much for writing your homey blog so faithfully! It really is interesting to check for each new post you put up!
      I think because it is about the heart and home and love, which Jesus is Lord of, that we people like it so much.

      Delete
    8. Anonymous2/01/2018

      John 3:14-16
      Love One Another
      …14We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love our brothers. The one who does not love remains in death. 15Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that eternal life does not reside in a murderer. 16By this we know what love is: Jesus laid down His life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers.…
      ....you tell her about Jesus Ellie!

      Delete
    9. Anonymous2/01/2018

      Some images get into childrens heads and stick, letting children be exposed to everything and they have to deal with it all means they are getting too much information! The apostle Paul said, “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable — if anything is excellent or praiseworthy — think about such things and the God of peace will be with you” (Philippians 4:8)

      Delete
    10. Anonymous2/01/2018

      The comment was not necessarily negative.....it was sort of true was it not? Your support to the girls may help them some of the times they don't have a lot of support and have to make discerning choices. What perspective does one take on this comment?

      Delete
    11. Anonymous2/01/2018

      1When I came to you, brothers, I did not come with eloquence or wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. 2For I decided to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified. 3I came to you in weakness and fear, and with much trembling.…1 Corinthians 2:1-3

      Delete
    12. Anonymous2/02/2018

      What about woe to the person who offends one of these little ones?

      Delete
    13. Anonymous2/04/2018

      2/02/18, not saying screening is bad, however teens aren't "little ones"

      Delete
    14. Anonymous2/15/2018

      Whoa, that was very mean girls of you. (Mean Girls is also a movie. You should watch that one.) You could have turned the other cheek as they say instead of being so snarky.

      Delete
  2. Shela G2/01/2018

    Ellie my husband and I watched the whole Monk series after reading your review. We enjoyed it so much!! We are also fans of the Murder She Baked movies. I would recommend Garage Sale Mysteries also from Hallmark and wholesome.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Garage Sale Mysteries is definitively worth watching!

      Delete
    2. Anonymous2/01/2018

      I like that series too! Lots of fun. Eileen

      Delete
    3. I'm glad to hear you enjoyed Monk, Shela!

      I've also heard of Garage Sale Mystery but haven't seen it. Do you ladies watch live, or do you watch online?

      Ellie

      Delete
  3. Anonymous2/01/2018

    I really enjoy this series myself! Hope Mr. H's sisters enjoyed their gift. My husband and I watched the Monk series as well. Eileen

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They did! The whole family enjoyed watching it. I'm glad you enjoyed Monk, Eileen!

      Ellie

      Delete
  4. This sounds like a movie series that my daughter would like.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Julianna2/01/2018

    I LOVE the Hallmark channel. I watch the new Christmas specials each year. I'll definitely look into this one. Thanks for sharing :)

    ReplyDelete
  6. I saw this movie and I love it! Most of Hallmark movies I enjoy. We don't have cable but we have Netflix and was able to watch When Calls the Heart for the first time. I binge watched all four seasons they had put up. It took about three weeks. I can't wait for the next season Netflix adds.
    And I agree, screening a movie beforehand is very wise thing to do. Ads may look innocent until you actually watch the show, you end up covering your own eyes!🤤

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous2/01/2018

      We have had that happen a few times. We get ready for a cozy night in after reading reviews about a movie or seeing a few trailers only to realise it isnt what it seems when we watch it. Very deceiving! Eileen

      Delete
    2. Anonymous2/02/2018

      I love When Calls the Heart series! I watched Heartland on Netflix. It was really good.

      Delete
  7. I enjoy watch the Murder she Baked movies. I'm reading the books by Joanna Fluke that the movie is by.

    I love Alison Sweeney she was on my soap opera.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm curious how the books compare to the movies, Beth? Are they just as good?

      Ellie

      Delete
  8. Anonymous2/01/2018

    I just watched that the other day. It was a peach cobbler one. I thought it was interesting how they filmed the fast paced conversations between the characters, a little different and interesting angle on the groups, not such a direct focus on each speaker talking at a time as usual. (I would not readily recommend murder shows to young teenagers though). I felt a bit guilty for getting back into the "murder" video genre - which is endless. The Bible says if we regard iniquity in our hearts the Lord will not hear us. I used to soak up true crime shows and fiction crime shows all day and night, for years. I don't know that that was a right thing to do and I would not want to begin that behaviour again. I am challenged to read the Bible everyday. If we all put as much time into Bible reading as we all do other entertainments we all might know it's content better. But you homeschoolers likely do not lack knowledge or the discipline of reading it. Yesterday I read most of the readings to catch up for January and start Feb 1 caught up, in my ( supposed to read everyday) 365 days Bible, to read the Bible in a year (old, new, psalm, proverb a day). I read all afternoon and evening three days per hour and stopped for an order in pizza at 5:30 pm. I felt better about myself by the time I was caught up. Really I have to read the good book more.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Anonymous2/01/2018

    My hubby and I love to watch the Hallmark channel. Thanks for sharing...Jane

    ReplyDelete
  10. Anonymous2/01/2018

    What about all the kissing on Hallmark movies?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous2/02/2018

      What's wrong with the kissing?

      Delete
  11. Check out the aurora teagarden series of movies on hallmark. It is a mystery show with Candace Cameron bure

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I saw that one on Amazon, as well. I'll have to check it out. Thanks!

      Ellie

      Delete
  12. I highly recommend the parental guidance on IMDB when screening movies, I always check it out before letting my kids watch a film. The details are precise, with different categories (bad language, smoking, drinking, violence and intimacy). Also, Ellie, there is nothing more satisfying for someone who likes to 'troll' (as above) than to see their post online and know that it has affected you in some way. Don't feed the trolls, don't give them the satisfaction ♥

    ReplyDelete
  13. Anonymous2/02/2018

    Can I ask a serious question about the whole "appropriate" controversy?
    I'm not here to cause trouble, I often read this blog because I find it interesting, even if I don't share all of the same views.
    I'm just wondering why is it an issue that things like movies or books should be appropriate. What I mean is: life is complicated and often we are presented with situations that we didn't think we would have to face. If I see something immoral or wrong in a movie (let's say people doing drugs, or lading a very promiscuous lifestyle) it doesn't mean that I would do it, or that I approve. It might, though, make for a good story, maybe entertaining, or maybe even for a teachable moment.
    I think that being exposed to difficult and complex matters, even at a young age, is actually a good thing, it helps you to have a more realistic and compassionate view of life.
    What do you guys think?
    Ellie, if you think that this message could stir up some not so nice people, feel free not to publish it, but I really am curious.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous2/02/2018

      Exactly, OP, exactly. Does the evening news get screened first? Or do you use it as a jumping off point for important conversations with your children?

      Delete
    2. I think, with my own kids, I would be more open to having conversations about things we see in media. I would be more inclined to screen something I was givibg as a gift. I wouldn't want to give something with questionable content that caused my gift to be a headache for another family. Same reason I don't give kids loud, flashy toys or glitter.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous2/02/2018

      I think many people screen things because they want to follow the command of hating evil. If I really HATE golf, I’m not going to watch movies for hours and hours on golf. If I really hate murder/adultery/thieving/dishonesty and other undesirable qualities, I’m not going to watch movies with those qualities, whether or not they’re glorified or scandalized.

      Another way to think of it. Would you dress up as Dylann Roof for Halloween? Probably not. To me, even pretending to do evil is unnecessary and whether or not it’s meant to, I think it glorifies evil.

      Delete
    4. Anonymous2/02/2018

      How do you properly screen a gift? What you think is OK, another parent might not want for their kids. Disney, Harry Potter, etc.

      Delete
    5. There is that. I was assuming she'd know her in-laws standards pretty well.

      Delete
  14. Ellie, have you seen the movie October Sky and the TV show Stranger Things? October Sky is about a high school boy who wants to be a NASA engineer but his family is unsupportive and Stranger Things is a show set in the 80s about a boy who goes missing, possibly due to supernatural forces.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous2/03/2018

      I LOVE October Sky! It’s one of my all time favorite movies. My grandmother grew up in the area where it takes place, which is what drew me to the film in the first place, but I love it entirely on it’s own merits. It’s a true story, and is based on the book Rocket Boys, by Homer Hickam, who is the main character in the film.
      Ellie, I bet you and Mr Handsome would really enjoy it.

      Delete
    2. My mother's family is also from West Virginia, it hit close to home for her.

      Delete
    3. I haven't seen October Sky, but I just looked it up, and it looks good. I'll add it to my list. I've heard about Stranger Things but haven't seen that either.

      Ellie

      Delete
    4. Anonymous2/07/2018

      I love Stranger Things! It's available on vidangel if you want to watch without language.

      Delete
  15. Caroline2/02/2018

    Ellie, have you watched the Great British Baking Show? It airs on PBS but is also available on Netflix. It's a reality competition show, but the contestants are all so kind to one another and there are some very talented bakers! It's a wonderful show.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Caroline,

      We watched the first episode of The Great British Baking Show yesterday evening. It was really good. Thanks for the suggestion! I agree that the contestants are very kind and encouraging to each other. I can't imagine how stressful it would be to have to bake something and make it look good in such a short amount of time!

      Ellie

      Delete
  16. Alicia Mae2/02/2018

    I'm a big fan of Monk and was so excited when you posted about it earlier! I will definitely have to check out this show.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Anonymous2/02/2018

    I love these movies and books! 📚

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. How do the books compare to the movies?

      Ellie

      Delete
  18. Anonymous2/02/2018

    Hallmark's entire Mysteries are all very good and worth watching.
    Joan,Marion and Marilyn

    ReplyDelete
  19. Anonymous2/03/2018

    This has nothing to do with this movie. I was 9 years old and I watch Friday the 13th movie. My parents didn't care.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I am a senior citizen now, But, I can still remember my teenage years. I think that pre-screening the video was a good idea. This is only an opinion .But, I remember being very curious.It seems like I wanted to mimic many of the 'grown-up' behaviour that I watched on TV.Films usually made things seem exciting and I'm from a small town with not much for young people to do. I was brought up in Church and I loved The Lord and my parents too. But, youth is a strange time. Too young for some things and too old for others. Very Confusing! So, why would anyone let a young person, step into traffic. If they could help it. They are like tender plants. Protect them from wind,disease, pests, etc. Shouldn't we at least, do the same for our children?There is plenty of time to introduce them to the hazards of life. When they have a stronger sense of self and how to protect themselves from the diseases, pests and TROLLS of the world. Many that creep in with the expressed intent to cause problems(much like a weed) Especially when they disguise themselves as something fun,entertaining and even friendly.Children need time to grow and learn in an environment that is as safe as we can possibly make it. Until they can discern what is best for them and their future. They don't know how to see around corners or through thinly veiled facades. Thankfully ,Ellie has that ability......

    ReplyDelete
  21. Anonymous2/04/2018

    The Aurora Teagarden movies on Hallmark are great 2!

    ReplyDelete
  22. Jessica2/04/2018

    I really like the Murder, She Baked movies also. Most of Hallmark's mystery series are enjoyable.

    ReplyDelete
  23. We love Monk! Check out Sue Thomas: F.B.Eye

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous2/05/2018

      I love Sue Thomas F.B.Eye!

      Delete
    2. My in-laws have a Sue Thomas DVD, and I've seen a couple episode. They were good, but there are still lots we haven't seen. We'll have to go back to those soon!

      Ellie

      Delete
  24. Anonymous2/06/2018

    Ellie have you seen This is Us? It has some language and mature content, so I wouldn't recommend for anyone under the age of at least 16, but it's a great show, very well written, and focuses on real life issues.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous2/07/2018

      Yeah, it's a great show, it's all about family and going through tough times together.

      Delete
    2. I haven't heard of This is Us. Will have to look into it. Thanks!

      Ellie

      Delete
    3. Anonymous2/07/2018

      So I am not the type of person to cry during movies or tv shows, but this is us has had me bawling many episodes. It just hits really close to home on so many subjects.

      Delete
  25. Anonymous2/10/2018

    I love the Murder She Baked movies! Have you heard of Signed, Sealed, Delivered? I recently saw one of those. Its on the same channel as Murder She Baked (and amazon as well I think) and created by Martha Williamson (Touched By An Angel). It is a great and moral tv and movie series. I believe there is a new one coming out this weekend.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Anonymous2/15/2018

    I enjoy Psych (watch reruns) and Leverage (also reruns), but both great shows. Good for all ages. If you have Netflix I recommend 13 Reasons Why. Only for older teens and adults. The book is great too. Very meaningful.

    ReplyDelete