"A mother's happiness is like a beacon, lighting up the future but reflected also on the past in the guise of fond memories."
~~Honore de Balzac

Hi all,

Happy Mother's Day to all the moms, aunts, grandmas, sisters, and friends who share the very best of maternal love with the world! 

In between spending time with my own mom and grandma and furbabies... and "soft releasing" twenty or so mice into the wild because my life is odd like that... I put together the following.  I hope you enjoy!

God bless,

Top Ten Times Andrew Needed a Mom

Okay, okay...  So maybe Andrew didn't *need* a mom in these moments.  After all, he always had God.  But... a physically present, caring, comforting mom woulda been nice, I think!

10.  This isn't so much a single moment as a recurring pattern.  A couple of examples would be "Elijah" and "Made in the U.S.A."  Basically, Monica and Tess are off doing their thing, often together, and Andrew's wandering around in the gloom of night all by his lonesome.  It makes me sad.  So for my own well-being... I wish Andrew had a mom walking with him then.

9.  So, in the grand scheme of things, maybe this wasn't a big deal but... Andrew coulda used a mom during "Only Connect."  Monica was acting like a spoiled brat and Andrew's mom woulda put her in her place for daring to kick dirt onto her baby boy!

8.  Oh my flippity flip...  Andrew needed a mom in "Voice of an Angel" not only to deal with the hecklers I'm sure he had but... Monica.  Again.  What the bloody heck?!  Someone needed to put her in a corner for snapping Andrew's suspenders.  "You need to be nice to your brother, Missy!  What has he ever done to you except be incredibly kind and quietly and calmly deal with your moodiness and fair-weather friendship?  Nothing, Monica.  Nothing.  No coffee for you for a week!"

7.  Andrew didn't really seem to need a mom in "My Dinner with Andrew."  He did just fine as it was.  But a mom fussing over him as he prepared for his date woulda been super cute and funny!

6.  Andrew coulda used a mother in the finale.  Not only could she have kept him company during the first half when he was entirely ignored but she could have comforted him after the big farewell scene.  In Dyelandverse, this role was filled by JenniAnn and her friends but still... a mom woulda been helpful.

5.  It woulda been nice for Andrew to have had a mom during "Children of the Night."  I know the point was for him to be truly homeless and, thus, more easily trusted by the kids.  But... I think that still would have been possible if a nice lady had been there to give him soup and cocoa and a blanket.

4.  And, okay, so this doesn't have much to do with Andrew but... if he had had a mom around during that episode, maybe she would have overheard Rafael call China "Sleazy."  And then she could have unleashed her righteous feminist wrath on Rafael, enrolled him in a Gender Studies class, and made him apologize.

3.  I think Andrew's prayer on the stairs moment in "The Journalist" is a rare, raw glimpse of his relationship with God.  I don't think another presence is warranted.  However...  I wish he'd had a mom with him when the news first broke that the children had been taken away from Horace and Zelda.  Someone who would have done more than give a vaguely concerned look in his direction like a certain individual...

2.  I wish Andrew would have had a mom with him during "The Violin Lesson" to comfort him... and also chew Tess out for yelling at him for someone else's violent reaction to the truth.  Not only was that not fair to Andrew nor kind to him but it's also an incredibly sucky message and Tess deserved to be yelled at. 

1. During "Til Death Do Us Part."  The whole thing...

Motherly Tropes in Dyeland Stories III

Below are some tropes centered around moms that have popped up in Dyeland stories (all of which are linked here).  Where relevant, some father-themed references are included since I try not to invoke the same trope twice.

Lamarck Was Right- The Dyeland stories have an odd sort of twist on this in that non-genetically related parents and children share traits.  For example, JenniAnn and Belle both have the same form of epilepsy.  Belle has also "inherited" Andrew's habit of raising an eye brow expressively, likely due to children's propensity for mimicry.  Similarly, JenniAnn has some of the same nervous tics as Vincent.  She also sometimes jokes that she inherited falling in love with an angel of death from her great-aunt/godmother... something that's surely not genetic.

Mother Makes You King- Sort of.  While I think it's safe to assume that Yeshua/Joshua would have come into his own one way or another, it's Maryam that encourages him to perform his first public miracle... per the Bible.  Also, in a roundabout way, virtually all inheritance in Dyeland would come from the child's mother.  This likely won't be true past the current generation but since Dyeland's population was overwhelmingly female and those women owned their homes, several of the male Dyelanders might not be landowners.  They just moved there to be with their ladies.  That being said, I don't think any of them get too invested in land rights.  Whichever children inherit their family homes will probably see it as just that... their family's home, not exclusively their mother's.

Muggle Foster Parents- JenniAnn is this to Violeta.  The angel is, obviously, very aware of her own powers and actual parentage.  However, it falls to JenniAnn to teach her how to move through the world as a woman. 

Resentful Guardian- I think pre-divine intervention Doreen Lee from "Ivy" could be fairly called this.  Religiously conservative, she was none too happy when her unwed daughter, Francesca, got pregnant.  When Francesca died and left little Ivy in the care of her grandmother, Doreen was emotionally distant and judgmental despite the fact that Ivy was a really great kid.  Thankfully, she came around when Andrew and Co. helped her see the light and then was further encouraged to be her best self when she met Joshua.  Now I'm sure Doreen is looking forward to being a loving great-grandma to any and all future Syvy babies.

Always a Child to Parent- I think a lot of the parental figures struggle with this at least a little bit.  JenniAnn's parents and, to a lesser extent Vincent, still tend to be overprotective when she's well into her thirties.  And maybe because of this, JenniAnn seems ready to repeat the same pattern with her children.  In flash forwards, she's very unsure about Avi getting married at twenty ("Sunshine and Snow").  Twenty is on the young side for marriage but he's certainly an adult capable of making such a decision.  JenniAnn's very happy to coddle an adult Belle after a bad date... complete with tucking her into bed with her plush frog ("A Stor Mo Chroi").  Andrew and JenniAnn have butted heads a bit over Violeta.  JenniAnn babies her.  Andrew thinks she needs to be more responsible.  Joshua complicated things a little when he temporarily transformed Violeta into a little girl in "Chrysalis."  While it served a very important, greater purpose, this likely made JenniAnn double-down on her belief that Violeta is, at heart, a little girl.  I'm sure JenniAnn will get better in time.

Pregnancy Test Plot- The entire plot of "The Test" involves JenniAnn and Isolde going to get a pregnancy test for the latter to take.  Prior to that, Sean got a couple pregnancy tests from Catherine that Kemara took in "Morning Has Broken."  Still earlier, Zeke got a pregnancy test for Diana in the "When the Honeymoon is Over" portion of "A Cord of Three Strands."

Parental Title Characterization- The assorted characters treat this issue in different ways.  Based on the flash forwards, Avi and Belle continue to call their parents "Mama" and "Daddy" well into adulthood.  Liam, meanwhile, has gone from using "Monny" and "Daddy" to "Mom" and "Dad."  Max made the biggest jump of all when he started calling Andrew "Dad" after having previously used his given name.  Vincent called his father "Father" for his entire life without it carrying the common distant, cold connotation.  That's largely because almost everyone referred to Jacob Wells as "Father."  Yeshua/Joshua seems to have always called his parents Ama and Abi but uses Abba, Father, and Dad interchangeably for God the Father.  However, he tends to only use Father when referencing Him to others.  So like "My Father said..." or "My Father sent me to..." and less often "Father, I need Your guidance."  The biggest exception, of course, is the Lord's Prayer aka the "Our Father."  When Joshua prays that in English, he says "Our Father" but it's highly possibly Yeshua originally used Abba instead.  Assumedly, Joshua always uses whatever term is most common among the audience.  If he was praying with Spanish speakers, he would undoubtedly begin "Padre nuestro..."

This newsletter is dedicated to John Dye and the cast and crew of TBAA for providing us with so many hours of TV that we can continue to enjoy with our families.

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(Photo Credits: The photographs used on this page are from Touched by an Angel and owned by CBS Productions, Caroline Productions, and Moon Water Productions.  They are not being used to seek profit.)