How Blake Shelton’s Mom Helped Him Write A Song And Build A Hallmark Christmas Movie Franchise

The song turned into something more than they could have ever imagined.

By

Madeleine O’Connell

| Posted on

December 11, 2023

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Blake Shelton with his mom, Dorothy Shackleford.; Photo Courtesy NBC

Blake Shelton has his mom, Dorothy Shackleford, to thank for seeing one of his holiday songs become the inspiration for six Hallmark Christmas movies.

In 2012, the country star was writing his song “Time for Me to Come Home,” for his holiday album fittingly titled, Cheers, It’s Christmas. Shelton found himself needing a bit of assistance and luckily, his mom was ready to lend a hand with her songwriting skills. 

“Blake was writing the song for his Christmas album and said he needed help with the second verse,” Dorothy told Country Living. “So I came up with the second verse and that’s how the song was born.”

Blake Shelton - Cheers, It's Christmas; Cover art Courtesy of Twitter
Blake Shelton – Cheers, It’s Christmas; Cover art Courtesy of Twitter

This Special Mother-Son Moment Evolved Into Something Much Bigger

Dorothy didn’t just get her name added to the credits as a songwriter, but also as a featured artist. Since she was so hopeful in the writing process, the Oklahoma native decided to ask his mom if she would also be interested in singing on the track along with him. 

While this was a special mother-son moment that would quickly become something bigger than they ever expected, it was still a daunting task for his mom who isn’t used to being the one behind the mic. Not only did she build up the confidence to get into the studio to record the cheery song, but later that year, they even got to perform it together live during Shelton’s Christmas special. 

“That thrilled me but at the same time it made me very nervous because I’m not a great singer,” Dorothy shared honestly.

“I just about passed out,” she added, “but somehow I got through it.”

The formerThe Voice coach sang the first verse and chorus on his own before Dorothy joined in as they took turns singing the rest of the song. 

“Now, it’s Christmas, Christmas / I’m hurryin’ on my way / Christmas, Christmas / Like I’m riding in a one horse sleigh / Well, I don’t have to hear no Jingle Bells / Just the ringing of the phone / Mama just called and said it’s time / For me come on home,” they sang as their vocals blended effortlessly in the chorus. 

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Did Blake Shelton’s Mother Write A Book?

Dorothy took things a step further when she wrote a fictional holiday book based on both the song and sentimental memories from past holidays with her son. A country music artist by the name of Heath Sawyer stars in the narrative and much like Shelton’s life, Sawyer’s busy schedule seems to be never-ending. Yet despite his crazy career, the star still makes sure to return home to Oklahoma for the holidays.

Which Hallmark Movie Did Blake Shelton Make With His Mom?

Between the song and the book, there was no lack of holiday cheer, but the Hallmark Channel felt like they could do even more to bring the story to life. So five years after the book’s release, Shelton got the chance to serve as an executive producer on his first Christmas movie, Time for Me to Come Home for Christmas. 

The film stars Megan Park and Josh Henderson, who find themselves stuck at the airport while trying to get home in time for Christmas. Once again, the leading male character bears a remarkable resemblance to Shelton’s real life between his witty personality and having a father who passed. 

Six Installments Of Hallmark Movies Produced By Blake Shelton

One year later, Hallmark announced that the movie would be getting a sequel, Time for You to Come Home for Christmas. Since then, the network has gone on to release a total of six films with Shelton serving as an executive producer on each. The proceeding Hallmark movies includeTime for Us to Come Home for Christmas (2020), Time for Them to Come Home for Christmas (2021), Time for Him To Come Home For Christmas (2022) and Time for Her to Come Home for Christmas (2023).

Blake Shelton - Time for Her to Come Home for Christmas
Blake Shelton – Time for Her to Come Home for Christmas

What Is The Name Of Blake Shelton’s New Christmas Movie?

Time for Her to Come Home for Christmas, the latest installment of the popular movie franchise, premiered on Thursday, November 30 (8 p.m. ET/PT) on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries as part of the network’s annual Miracles of Christmas programming event.

Shelton expressed his excitement for the upcoming film by teasing the official trailer on Twitter. 

His caption read, “We’ve got a brand new movie coming y’alls way!!!!”

With each of these Holiday films, Shelton sees his song come to life in a new way as each plot features a different storyline that connects back to the tune’s history. In the latest, Time for Her to Come Home for Christmas, grief is at the center of the storyline starring Shenae Grimes-Beech (“90210”) and Chris Carmack (“Grey’s Anatomy”). 

Grimes-Beech plays the role of Carly, a women faced with incredible grief as she approaches the first holiday season without her late mother. In an effort to try and combat her feelings of loneliness, she takes a temporary job as the leader of a small-town church choir’s Christmas program. Along the way, she meets Matthew (Carmack), who is returning home after serving in the Army and might just turn out to be her saving grace. 

According to the movie’s synopsis, Carly will continue to unravel pieces of her journey one step at a time as she learns about true love, gains trust with those in her new community, and discovers that forgiveness is what she needs to finally heal. 

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Madeleine O’Connell graduated from North Central College with a bachelors degree in Journalism and Broadcast Communications before deciding to pursue her studies further at DePaul University. There, she earned her masters degree in Digital Communication & Media Arts. O’Connell served as a freelance writer for over two years while also interning with the Academy of Country Music, SiriusXM and Circle Media and assisting with Amazon Music’s Country Heat Weekly podcast. In addition to Country Now, she has been published in American Songwriter, Music Mayhem, and Holler.Country. Madeleine O’Connell is a member of the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music.