Christmas Homecoming

Amanda (Julie Benz), a widowed army wife, is facing her second Christmas alone and still can’t bring herself to decorate for the season during which she lost her husband. Now she’s on the verge of losing her job at the local history museum too, unless her brilliant fundraising plan can save the day – and honestly what are the chances of that happening, and with such a tight deadline?

Good thing she’s recently taken on a tenant, Master Sergeant Jim Mullins (Michael Shanks), who’ll be staying just long enough to heal his broken leg. For reasons unknown to us, Jim is a very big fan of Christmas and the first thing he does is string up lights around his shabby little apartment, after which he immediately begins wildly overstepping. Perhaps he’s unused to idle hands, but he starts playing Mr. Fix It around the house without Amanda’s permission or knowledge, even tinkering with a vintage motorcycle he knows belonged to Amanda’s dead husband, which should have rendered it not only off-limits and sacrosanct. This is the same woman, after all, who still can’t delete her late husband’s last voice mail or throw out even his ugliest bowling shirt.

Slowly but surely, the two begin to heal together – and yes, to even the playing field, Jim does have something more to heal than just his dumb leg. With broken hearts on the mend, love is perhaps not as impossible as it once seemed, but widows are a tough nut to crack. It is much harder to move on from a love that never ran its course, and it’s hard to be compared to a sainted man who died a hero. And yet Jim decides to make things even harder on them by re-enlisting. Sure the retention bonus allows for a grand gesture, but do you think Amanda wants to risk her heart in Afghanistan again?

Hallmark is no stranger to depictions of Christmas for the military family but this year have specifically partnered with the United Service Organizations (USO), the nation’s leading organization to serve the men and women in the U.S. military and their families. This partnership aims to raise awareness about the needs of the military community, honouring the service and sacrifice of the Armed Forces, bringing cheer to military families and encouraging the American public to express gratitude for our men and women in uniform.

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