Shannon here: Beth E. Westcott shares how she met her husband, along with how her characters meet in her latest Contemporary Romance, Her Heart’s Longing, plus a chance to win a copy. Comment or answer the question in this post to enter, U.S. residents only. Deadline: July 22nd, 11:59 pm central time. Here’s Beth:
How I Met My Spouse
The summer between my junior and senior years in college, I became a counselor at Camp Joy in Carmel, New York, a camp owned and operated by Childrens’ Bible Fellowship of Greater New York. For each two-week session, my cabin held ten ten-year-old girls from Inner City New York, a challenge indeed for this country girl from upstate New York.
During the first session, our mutual friend Cheri, who was also a counselor, introduced me to Frank Westcott. Frank had been a counselor for the two previous summers and now had a full-time job in a children’s institution. He had returned for a day to visit friends at camp. We’d grown up in neighboring towns, and I attended his home church while in college, but we’d never met.
About a week later, Cheri came to me with a request from Frank. Because he didn’t know how to contact me directly, he asked her to ask me if I’d be interested in going on a date with him. I said yes. We dated several times during the summer, on mutual days off, and wrote letters. After six weeks, he asked me to marry him. A year later, we said our “I do’s.”
How did Katie Mann and Jackson Stone meet?
Excerpt from Her Heart’s Longing by Beth E. Westcott:
WHEN THE DAY nurse called in with a family emergency on Friday, Katie agreed to work on her day off. She entered the common room at the Senior Home, and her breath caught.
Jackson Stone, seated beside Mary Davis, an elderly resident, looked up. He stood as their eyes connected. She took a deep breath and tried to calm the butterflies in her stomach, determined to maintain a professional demeanor.
“Have you met David’s grandson Jackson, Miss Mann?” Mary rested her hand on Jackson’s arm.
Jackson’s face brightened with a smile, and he stepped toward her. “Katie Mann, I didn’t know you worked here.”
His smile sent a tingle to her toes.
Katie had turned down several dates with him during college. None of her college friends, including Jackson, knew about the baby. She didn’t talk about him, and she didn’t want to answer questions.
She chose group activities with male and female friends rather than personal dates. She hadn’t seen Jackson since graduation, and she hadn’t thought about him at all.
“Hello, Jackson.” His hazel eyes, short, wavy, brown hair, and a smile that lit up his face made her heart race double-time. She tried to remain cool as she handed Mary a small cup containing pills and some water from the tray she carried. “What brings you to Greenlawn?”
“I’m here to visit my grandfather.”
“Your grandfather?” She frowned, then smiled. “Oh, Mary said you’re David Stone’s grandson!” She looked around. “Where is he, by the way?”
Mary’s eyes moved from her to Jackson and back. “I see you’ve met.”
“I had the pleasure of meeting Katie in college, and Grandpa went to his room to get some pictures to show us.” His face beamed as he turned back to her. “If you have time, maybe you’d like to see them.”
“I’m on duty. I’m sorry, I don’t have time right now.” She’d like many moments to spend with Jackson just then. “But I’ll be back to give David his meds.”
“I’m disappointed, Katie. I thought you’d come back to see me, but I’ve been usurped by my grandfather.” His wink brought warmth to her face, and the tray she held trembled slightly.
Mary watched them, a glint in her eyes and a grin on her lips.
Katie bit her lip to keep from laughing as she moved away.
Question for Readers: What do you consider a proper length of time between a first date and a proposal, and then a wedding?
About Beth: A life-long lover of books and reading, Beth’s first Christian romance novel, Meadow Song, debuted in 2018, republished by Scrivenings Press in 2020. Books one and two in The Three Sisters series, Heart’s Desire and A Heart’s Journey, are also available, and book three, Her Heart’s Longing, is scheduled for release on July 11, 2023. Her short story, “Sadie and the Princess,” is included in Heart-warming Horse Stories on Amazon. Several of her church holiday manuscripts were published by Lillenas Drama in their Christmas, Easter, and Thanksgiving Program Builders, and some devotions appeared in Penned for the Heart and The Secret Place.
Beth grew up in rural, upstate New York, the youngest of seven. After graduating from Hartwick College, she married Frank and served with him in Child Evangelism Fellowship for five years and beside him in the pastoral ministry for 33 years. The mother of three and the grandmother of five, she enjoys music, sewing, and gardening, as well as reading and writing. Learn more & connect:
About the book – Her Heart’s Longing: In her heart, registered nurse Katie Mann carries the painful memories of her teen pregnancy and the baby boy she gave up for adoption. Only the people closest to her remember that time in Katie’s life.
She can’t convince the baby’s biological father, the charming and fickle Nathan West, she isn’t interested in giving him a second chance for a relationship.
When she meets Jackson Stone, a former college classmate at the senior citizen residence where she works as a nurse, sparks ignite. Jackson, the grandson of Katie’s favorite resident at the Senior Home, thinks she’s hiding something, but that doesn’t stop him from pursuing a relationship with her. Katie can’t deny her growing love for Jackson, but she’s afraid to tell him the truth about her past.
Will telling Jackson the truth keep Katie from the man she loves and the family she longs to have?
Come back July 18th for Lori DeJong!