Nikki Studebaker Barcus – Real life Romance – Part 1 of 3

Shannon here: Inspirational author, Nikki Studebaker Barcus shares a glimpse into her real life romance. Nikki is helping me give away a copy of White Roses. Comment by Sept 25, 8:00 PM Central for a chance to win. Check the comments for a the winner and contact me. Here’s Nikki:

How We Met: Tissue Paper Romance 

Usually when asked about how we met, I do the talking. I’m a storyteller, after all. But my husband always likes to interject, “I was checking her out while she was checking me out.” He thinks this is so funny because we met at the grocery store.

On Wednesday evening, I counted down cash drawers, refunded change to customers who had theirs stolen by the pop machine, and sold stamps and money orders from the office/express lane of the small grocery where I worked as a college student home for summer break. As I finished up the books for the evening, we got busy. Customers stood in lines behind the checkout stations and it became apparent that I needed to take a few with smaller orders.

While I rang up raisins and cereal for a good-looking guy, the phone rang.

“Gerber’s Grocery, may I help you?”

“Nikki…” the voice on the other end drew out my name.


“This is Mom.” What? My mom had never called me at work.

“Do you have any money? Can you bring home some toilet paper?”

I assured my mom I’d see her in about and hour, toilet paper in hand, and hung up. It caught me a little funny and I guess I giggled out loud. That prompted a quizzical smile from the good-looking guy followed by an explanation of my mother’s request.

A few days later, my replacement for the night walked in the door—two hours early. He quizzed me about the state of my love life and I couldn’t help but wonder why he wanted to know. Finally he explained that a friend of his had asked about me and gave me his name.

The name didn’t strike me as familiar and I finally told him I couldn’t think who he might be talking about.

“He said he came through your lane and you talked about toilet paper.”

Finally it all clicked into place. My friend left and two hours later when he returned for his shift, my future husband accompanied him. He introduced himself and we met at a restaurant in town. Three months later, we were engaged.

About Nikki: Nikki Studebaker Barcus is a licensed teacher and freelance writer who lives with her husband of sixteen years and their 3 children on an Indiana farm. She writes about the lessons God teaches her through her kids on her blog, Lessons from the Carpool Line ( She is a monthly contributor to the Indiana Chapter blog of American Christian Fiction Writers, Hoosier Ink ( Her credits include Christian Communicator, Christian Book Previews, The Aboite Independent, Home Times Family Newspaper, and Church Libraries. The story of the miraculous birth of her daughter appears in the recent Guideposts book True Stories of Extraordinary Answers to Prayer: Unexpected Answers and she is a contributor to a devotional book releasing in October from Zondervan titled Heaven Calling: Hearing Your Father’s Voice Every Day of the Year.

Come back Sept 21 for a recipe for romance  from White Roses and Sept 22 for Part 2 of Nikki’s story.

7 Responses to “Nikki Studebaker Barcus – Real life Romance – Part 1 of 3”

  • Jodi Smoot says:

    My name is Jodi Smoot. Nikki is actually my cousin, and I’ve never heard this story. If I had, I would have known that, so far, her story with David is similar to mine with Tim. We “argued” or “flirted,” depending on where you stood during this conversation, about the the 3 cents change I was trying to give him when he checked out at the grocery that I worked, This was also while I was manning a register instead of being in the office. We were “pre-engaged” just over two months later as he was getting ready to leave for Saudi Arabia…that was 21 years, and almost 20 years of marriage ago. He was gone for seven months, and we were married about a month and a half after he got back.

    I look forward to the rest of the story.

  • Terry says:

    …. and Wells County was never the same thereafter. I feel like there are a lot of funny details being left out here… Looking forward to Part 2!

  • Rosemary says:

    Who wouldn’t want as many copies as they can get of White Roses. It’s an awesome story.

  • Sylvia M. says:

    Oh, this is a neat story. I wish more authors would make their heroes and heroines meet in ways like this. I’m looking forward to reading the rest of the story!

  • Elizabeth Dennison says:

    love the way they met!! can’t wait to read more!!

  • Jodi, your story sounds great too. You could write it or have the writer in your family write it up for my blog.

    Terry sounds like he knows a lot more of the story.

    Thanks for the PR, Rosemary.

    Sylvia, maybe Nikki will use her real life meeting with her hubby in a book.

  • Kim K says:

    Ahhh Nikki Barcus! Love the “real life” story….can’t wait to read the rest! I met my husband when I was a waitress in town. I waited on him, then followed him to church the next day, 4 months later we were married. I can definitely relate to Jodi as we’ve been married 20 years now.

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