05 May 2019

Dreams Come True -- God's Mercies

Carrie Fancett Pagels on board the Emerald Dawn
Above is a picture of a dream coming true! That's me holding a copy of my novel, Saving the Marquise's Granddaughter (Pelican), which released in 2016.  When I was researching and writing this book, I prayed that I'd someday get to go to Europe and to the Palatinate of Germany and to France, where this story was set. Fast forward in time, and that hadn't happened but my book baby had received a starred Romantic Times Book Reviews review when it released. Then this winter, my in-laws offered to bring my husband and I on their Rhine River Cruise in Europe, which was such an unexpected blessing. And the wonderful cruise director, Michael, on the Emerald Dawn, allowed me to leave a copy of my book for their library in the lounge!

A trip like this was on my bucket list. Don't you love it when God is merciful and gives you these opportunities? We had satan throwing all kinds of obstacles in our way after my in-laws graciously gave us this offer. But the Lord made a path so we could go. Multiple problems were addressed. Then one of my dear friends, Rosemary, came and stayed with our son for the twelve days we were gone. I'd always dreamed of taking a copy of my novel with me when I went to the setting of the story. I'd never been to Europe and almost all of my stories are set in locations that I knew well. I only knew Suzanne and Johan's "world" from doing diligent research. Now I was getting to see it!

One of the places I most wanted to visit was Cologne Cathedral (Koln, if you are in Germany). Here's a picture of me with Joan and Don Pagels in front of this gorgeous building.

Joan, Don, & Carrie Fancett Pagels in front of Cologne Cathedral, Germany, April 2019

When I was going some genealogical research on Johan Adam Rousch, my ancestor, I learned some earlier ancestors studied there. I read about the massive statue figures embedded in the exterior walls of the soaring cathedral. I wondered what they would look like in person. I stood and gaped at them, when we got there. I was dumbstruck by the beauty of them. Check out some distance views and other aerial pictures on Wikipedia (click here.) The cathedral is stunning and I could have spent days here and at the other cathedrals on the trip. Here are a few pictures of the exterior statues of which there are many:

I'd also hoped to make it to Aachen Cathedral, which is included in my story (and is not on the Rhine River). Another dream for another day and more of God's mercies to come!!!

Giveaway: Take your own trip to Europe and the Rhine River by reading my novel Saving the Marquise's Granddaughter! I'm giving away a gently used copy to one of my commenters, USA only. Answer this question: When has God given you an unexpected blessing?


  1. I got to travel with the hubby for work in the UK. Then we went on to Holland and Scotland via train. It was a wonderful way to travel and it was a fabulous trip!
    Perrianne Askew

  2. When we were expecting our first babies (twins) we were wondering what we were going to do for a vehicle. Our then current car wasn’t the greatest for two babies. My cousins father-in-law had recently passed and they got his SUV. Now having three cars, she and her husband felt God telling them to bless us with their van.

  3. On, so many. On our 25th wedding anniversary The Lord gave us an unexpected trip To Alaska. It was so much fun and such an awesome experience.
    faithdcreech at gmail dot com

  4. Andrea StephensMay 5, 2019 at 6:18 PM

    Thank you for sharing your blessings with us Carrie! I loved all the photos you shared on FB.

  5. Absolutely! God has given us an unexpected blessing because 8 yrs ago we thought my husband wouldn’t live a year with the cancer he had throughout his body. He’s still here. Will be 9 yrs in October.

  6. My son and his wife took me to see my mother when she was 100 years old. She got to see her two great grandsons. My son had a business event near there and offered to drive us to Illinois rather than fly to Chicago.
    One of many unexpected blessings.

  7. Carrie, I'm thrilled you were able to go on this adventure! You may remember that in May 2018, I had the privilege of going to Israel. ((((HUGS)))

  8. Carrie, I am so glad you got to enjoy this trip of a lifetime! A river cruise is on my wish list even though I have had the privilege to spend time in Europe. The big blessing has been the new job my husband got out of the blue. He had not applied and I was about to have back surgery. They called him for an interview, he wasn’t even sure he should bother, and the job was his before the interview was over! How’s that for an unexpected blessing :).

  9. So happy for you, Carrie, that your dream came true and you were able to go on this awesome trip!! My unexpected blessing was that this past March my husband whisked me away for my birthday from snow country in Michigan to warm and sunny Florida! This was our first vacation without kids in 25 years! We had such a wonderful time together!!!

    Thank you for the chance to win a copy of your book, Saving the Marquise's Granddaughter!

    ~Alison Boss


  10. Carrie, I'm so glad you had such a wonderful blessing and enjoyed your trip! I have enjoyed the beautiful pictures you have shared.

    Saving the Marquise's Granddaughter is a wonderful book.
    Blessings, Tina


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