Welcome to my page! Please come and check out my site for book updates or my Refinished Dreams blog for fictional and real-life stories of "tarnished dreams refinished by grace."
Tomorrow's Sun, book 1 of the Lost Sanctuary series, is a contemporary read containing a parallel historical story. When Emily Foster buys a 170-year-old house in Rochester, Wisconsin, she has no idea the house she intends to flip will draw her into the lives--and loves--of the family who built it. Old love letters and a secret hiding place begin her quest to find out what happened to a faith-filled young couple involved in the Underground Railroad. Watch for more information on Tomorrow's Sun, due to release in February 2012, followed by Yesterday's Stardust and Today's Shadows.
I had the joy of writing a Christmas-themed novella with three other wonderful and funny Christian authors. We spent a few days in Wisconsin's touristy Door County Penninsula for researd...if that's what you can call three days at a bed and breakfast and sampling all the local cuisine and beauty! "Christmas Crazy" in A Door County Christmas was released in September 2010.
COMING IN 2012:
Cedar Creek Seasons
Once again, I'm experiencing the thrill of working with Rachael Phillips, Eileen Key, and Cynthia Ruchti on a novella collection. These four stories are set in the historic tourist town of Cedarburg, Wisconsin. We've divided the calendar year for this collection. My story, A Contest of Wills, begins on New Year's Day and the final story ends at Christmas. We're just beginning to get to know our plots and characters and we're having a blast with these romantic comedies set to be released in May of 2012.
If you had asked me at any time during my first twenty-six years if I was a Christian, my answer would have been “of course.” Like many of you, I was raised in a church-going home and spent the first nineteen years of my life attending and teaching Sunday School, singing in the choir, and being involved in the youth group. But I kept running into “born again” Christians who had a passion and excitement that I just didn’t understand, and for years I knew something was missing.
I started getting serious about God when I was pregnant with our first child, but it wasn’t until a few years later, when an ectopic pregnancy landed me in the emergency room with no detectable pulse or measurable blood pressure, that I really let Him have my heart. It was then, when I tasted death and knew beyond the shadow of a doubt that God was real, that I finally surrendered and allowed my Savior to also be my Lord.
After thirty-one years of following Christ on a twisty-turny, up and down journey, when I try to distill all that is vital down to one single word, it is still the one truth that God showed me in that emergency room: SURRENDER.There is nothing easy about letting go…of our children, our spouses, our health, our futures...but until we do, we cannot fully see the unfailing tenderness and unimaginable glory of our Father God. This is the message that we have tried to proclaim in all of our stories, and this is my prayer for each one of you: Whatever it is that is holding you back from true intimacy with God, give it to Him…and He, in turn, will grant you beauty for ashes, a garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness, and the oil of joy for mourning.
My Amazing Family
A little background info:
I was born in Minneapolis and spent my childhood in four different Midwestern states, but consider myself a Wisconsinite since I’ve lived here since I was ten. My mother, who was a PK, passed away in June. She was always an example of faith and optimism for me. Up until she suffered a massive stroke at the age of 91, when asked what the best season of life is, her answer is “The one you’re in at the moment.” Even in her last two years, confined to a wheelchair, she lived out the Serenity Prayer. Her enthusiasm and my father’s dependability were the backdrop to a pretty sheltered and “Leave It to Beaver” kind of childhood…until my father died suddenly of a heart attack when I was seventeen.
I have one younger brother, so, being the only girl, I grew up as a bit of a princess. True to form, I began dreaming of my Prince Charming when I was about seven. I met him just eight years later.I was sitting in Algebra one day during my sophomore year of high school, when a friend whispered to me that Bill Melby was going to invite me to a Friday night party. Unfortunately, I already had a date for the same party—a blind date. To make a long story short, I knew within the first ten minutes of that party that I’d rather be dancing with the blonde guy in the paisley shirt with eyes so blue I could swim in them than the boy I was with. So, with all the sensitivity of a fifteen year old, I asked the friend who had arranged the blind date to take the guy home so I could be with Bill! The rest, as they say, is history.
In March of 2011 we celebrated 39 years of marriage. God blessed us with four sons--Scott, Jeff, Aaron, and Mark--who are now all married to beautiful Godly women. As I remember back to the times I prayed over our sleeping boys when they were babies, asking God’s hand of protection and blessing on the little girls that would one day be their wives, I am overwhelmed by God’s incredible faithfulness.
“Grandma Becky” is now the unbelievably (obnoxiously!) proud grandma to Reagan, Sage, Sawyer, Ethan, Peter, Cole, Lilly, Keira, Caden, Oliver, and Finn. Our twelfth grandbaby is due at Christmastime! They are pure joy, and we’re making it abundantly clear to all of our kids that we have enough love for lots more!
I was grateful to be able to be a stay-at-home mom for 30 years, homeschooling for ten of them. I'm still blessed to be able to stay home, but now I get to spend my time fulfilling my little-girl dream of writing. Bill and I take part in several Bible studies and a small group. We love visiting our kids and seeing the country in our motorhome or on our Honda Gold Wing. But the best times of all are the messy, noisy, full-house times when some or all of our kids are home.