Erin Krakow has endeared herself to millions of “When Calls the Heart” fans through the past six seasons of the Hallmark Channel’s most beloved drama. Her character of Elizabeth Thatcher came to Hope Valley when it was known as Coal Valley, determined to give the Northwest Territory community all she had as its first teacher. She had to prove herself through many trials. Almost all of her possessions were stolen en route to her destination, and an accidental fire in the teacher's cottage took everything else, except her resilience.

Elizabeth persevered, through the rugged conditions that were very different from her privileged upbringing. and moved past the frigid reception she received from some residents. Her willingness to help not only her students but, anyone in need in her new home, soon bonded Elizabeth tightly to a circle of friends who stood by her side. Her tender romance with Jack Thornton evolved over time as well, and she was only given a brief time as the bride, Elizabeth Thornton, before enduring the loss of her husband.

Perhaps the most endearing journey of all taken on-screen by Erin Krakow is her portrayal as the widowed working mother who is determined to give her son her very best while still balancing her calling to teach and to be a pivotal part of her community.

Every mom of young children knows the feeling of needing several sets of hands, to go along with eyes in the back of the head. The real boys who portray “When Calls the Heart’s” baby Jack, twins Lincoln and Gunnar Taylor, were like Energizer bunnies during a November 28 interview with Entertainment Tonight. Somehow, the leading lady managed to answer a few questions, and clearly adores her youngest co-stars, who kept her on her toes!

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Practice makes perfect

Millions of “Hearties” see the natural rapport between Erin Krakow and the castmates who portray her students. The effervescent and gifted Krakow often shares birthday greetings and behind-the-scenes fun with the younger co-stars, literally growing up before her eyes and those of “When Calls the Heart” fans.

Erin comes by her skills, with young children very naturally having worked as a nanny while seeking her diverse roles. She has portrayed a teacher before, as well, in 2014’s Hallmark Christmas favorite, “A Cookie Cutter Christmas,” which also, like Elizabeth, involves a character honing her culinary skills.

Krakow was warm as toast with children as Miranda Chester in the “Father Christmas” movie trilogy on Hallmark networks. Nothing is playacting for the star in this sit-down visit (not for long). Lincoln and Gunnar run circles around their on-screen mom, perfectly acting like toddlers.

“I don't know how their real mama does it,” Krakow confesses of keeping up with the constant activity level. She recently related that if she could spend time with any other “When Calls the Heart” cast member besides her grown-up leading men, Chris McNally and Kevin McGarry, she would choose the Taylor twins, a.k.a baby Jack.

She related how the mood on the set is lifted for each and all of the cast because will in all of the “spontaneous, joyful, and loving” energy of the youngest stars-- just before a grown to be put down from her lap.

Erin elaborated on how the little lads had “flip-flopped” with their personalities, with Gunnar becoming the more outgoing sibling for now. The actress is in good hands with both boys, because they stay so “focused and involved” with what their on-set mother is doing.

The interview was set in the Hope Valley library, and Lincoln and Gunnar had a grand time tossing teddy bears, playing with the pretender books, and, of course, trying to climb wherever they could, including over Erin Krakow's shoulders.

Krakow revealed that “movement” will play a big part in Season 7 of “When Calls the Heart.” There will be “first steps, first words…a lot of firsts”

Christmas treats

Erin Krakow conveys an essence of her own spirit and playful nature in all of her romantic roles, and she has a long and much-loved roster from which to choose. The character of Elizabeth Thornton, however, is surprised to have two men seeking her affections and attention. Fans will have to wait until Season 7 debuts in early 2020 to finally discover the meaning of the penetrating gaze which followed Nathan Grant out the door while she danced with Lucas Bouchard.

The wait is certain to be worth it, and Elizabeth's first steps into new love are sure to be thrilling for fans as well as her suitors. This coming season likely will have a few more tutorials in toddler care for the fine gentlemen, too.

The Julliard-trained star demonstrated that she could be quite helpful in making cookies during Hallmark Drama’s “Christmas Cookie Matchup,” and certainly took nicest celebrity honors from her experienced making partner. The only recipe Erin Krakow needs in the premiere of her “Sense, Sensibility & Snowmen” feature on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries this Saturday, November 30, is the one for how to crack a Scrooge of a toy store boss (Luke MacFarlane) by planning a wonderful Christmas bash.

Like her characters, Erin Krakow has a way of winning over everyone around her, even the ones only as tall as her knees.

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