“Madge DuPree declares she is much too old and crotchety for any romantic nonsense. Mr. Elmer Grigsby disagrees.”


I never planned to be a romance writer. But,  I awoke one morning to find Elmer Grigsby standing on Madge DuPree’s doorstep. He held his hat in one hand and flowers in the other. And so began The Reluctant Courtship of Madge DuPree. Elmer insisted we see the story through, for better or worse. And so, we have. Me, Elmer, Madge, the Marvel family, and a few other folks. You, Dear Reader, should be able to join the story in 2020. (Make sure to sign up for my newsletter at the top of this page so you can get updates.)

Also, in case you haven’t met any of my imaginary friends, you still have time to catch up with the story by reading the earlier volumes. I suggest Thirty Days to Glory followed by The Marvel House. You can add Serendipity and Rose Hill Cottage if the winter gets long while you wait.

Now, for the marriage advice I promised in this title. My handsome husband and I went to marriage counseling about fifteen years ago as part of a get-healthy program. We had hit a little bump in the road and found ourselves in the confusing land of addiction and recovery. We navigated with the help of the Holy Spirit, our great family, faithful friends, and some dedicated professionals.

After something like that, it can be a challenge to find your way back to the new normal in a long-time marriage. At one of our early sessions, our marriage counselor gave us this excellent piece of advice:

“When you leave in the mornings, always kiss good-bye for a count of three.

When you get back home at night, do the same thing.”

We did. If you follow this same advice, Dear Reader, I promise you two things:

  • You won’t be able to stay irritated at one another all day.
  • You might be late for work.


Happy Kissing!

Happy Romance!

Happy Hoping! (For the Madge’s among us who haven’t met an Elmer yet.)