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Chicken Soup for the Couple's Soul: Inspirational Stories About Love and Relationships

Overview

Whether single, separated or someone's spouse, everyone wants to find and keep this elusive thing called love. Bestselling author and foremost relationship expert Barbara De Angelis teams up as a co-author of Chicken Soup for the Couple's Soul, a collection of heartwarming stories about how real people discovered true love with the person of their dreams.

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Overview

Whether single, separated or someone's spouse, everyone wants to find and keep this elusive thing called love. Bestselling author and foremost relationship expert Barbara De Angelis teams up as a co-author of Chicken Soup for the Couple's Soul, a collection of heartwarming stories about how real people discovered true love with the person of their dreams.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781623610715
  • Publisher: Backlist, LLC - a unit of Chicken Soup of the Soul Publishing LLC
  • Publication date: 8/28/2012
  • Edition description: Original
  • Pages: 352
  • Sales rank: 181,799
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Jack Canfield is cocreator of the Chicken Soup for the Soul® series, which includes forty New York Times bestsellers, and coauthor of The Success Principles: How to Get from Where You Are to Where You Want to Be. He is a leader in the field of personal transformation and peak performance and is currently CEO of the Canfield Training Group and Founder and Chairman of the Board of The Foundation for Self-Esteem. An internationally renowned corporate trainer and keynote speaker, he lives in Santa Barbara, California.

Mark Victor Hansen is a co-founder of Chicken Soup for the Soul.

Biography

While Jack Canfield himself may not necessarily be a household name, it's very likely that you have heard of his famed Chicken Soup for the Soul series and nearly as likely that you have at least one of them sitting on your very own bookshelf! Having got his start as an inspirational speaker, Canfield's own story is nothing less than inspirational.

Jack Canfield had been traveling around delivering key note speeches and organizing workshops to help audiences build their self-esteem and maximize their potential when he had an in-flight brainstorm that changed his life. While flying home from a gig, Canfield realized that the very same advice he had been delivering during his in-person addresses could potentially form the basis of a book. Canfield used inspirational stories he'd gleaned over the years as the basis of his speeches, and he thought it would be a terrific idea to gather together 101 inspirational stories and anthologize them in a single volume. Upon returning home, Canfield approached friend and author Mark Victor Hansen about his concept. Hansen agreed it was a great idea, and the two men set about finding a publisher. Believe it or not, the mega-selling series was not an easy sell to publishers. "We were rejected by 123 publishers all told," Canfield told Shareguide.com. "The first time we went to New York, we visited with about a dozen publishers in a two day period with our agent, and nobody wanted it. They all said it was a stupid title, that nobody bought collections of short stories, that there was no edge -- no sex, no violence. Why would anyone read it?"

Canfield wisely practiced what he preached -- and persisted. Ultimately, he and Hansen sold the first Chicken Soup for the Soul book to a small press based in Deerfield Beach, Florida, called Health Communications. The rest, as they say, is history. There are currently 80 million copies of the Chicken Soup books in print, with subjects as varied as Chicken Soup For the Horse Lover's Soul and Chicken Soup For the Prisoner's Soul. Canfield and Hansen ranked as the top-selling authors of 1997 and are multiple New York Times bestsellers. Most important of all, the inspirational stories they have gathered in their many volumes have improved the lives of countless readers.

This year, expect to see Canfield's name gracing the covers of such titles as Chicken Soup For the Scrapbooker's Soul, Chicken Soup For the Mother and Son Soul, and Chicken Soup For the African American Woman's Soul. He and Hansen have also launched the all-new "Healthy Living" series and 8 titles in that series have already been released this year. There is also the fascinating You've GOT to Read This Book!, in which Canfield compiles personal accounts by 55 people each discussing a book that has changed his or her life. The most compelling of these may be the story of young entrepreneur Farrah Gray, who read Deepak Chopra's The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success at the age of 11 and made his first million dollars at the age of 14!

With no sign of slowing down, Canfield continues to be an inspiration to millions, who fortunately refused to give up when it seemed as though he would never even get his first book published. "Mark and I are big believers in perseverance," he said. "If you have a vision and a life purpose, and you believe in it, then you do not let external events tell you what is so. You follow your internal guidance and follow your bliss, as Joseph Campbell used to say."

Good To Know

Canfield is the founder of two California based self-esteem programs, "Self-Esteem Seminars" in Santa Barbara and "The Foundation For Self Esteem" in Culver City.

Writing the first Chicken Soup book was a lot more daunting than Canfield expected. After the first three years of research, he and Mark Victor Hansen had only compiled 68 stories -- 33 tales shy of their goal of 101 stories.

Along with co-writing dozens of full-length books, Canfield also publishes a free biweekly newsletter called Success Strategies.

Some fun and fascinating outtakes from our interview with Canfield:

"My inspiration for writing comes from my passion for teaching others how to live more effective lives. I started out as a history teacher in an all-black inner city high school in Chicago, graduated to a teacher trainer, then psychotherapist, then trainer of therapists, then large group transformational trainer and then a writer and keynote speaker. All along the way, my desire was to make a difference, to help people live more fulfilling lives. That is what I still do today. Most people don't know this but I was not a good writer in college. I got a C in composition. Nobody would have ever believed I would grow up to be a bestselling author."

"I play guitar, and I am learning to play the piano. I love movies and some TV shows. My favorites are Six Feet Under, Grey's Anatomy, House and Lost. I love to play Scrabble, poker and backgammon with my in-laws, nieces and nephews. We really get into it. I love to travel. I have been to 25 countries and try to add two or three new ones every year."

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    1. Hometown:
      Santa Barbara, California
    1. Date of Birth:
      August 19, 1944
    2. Place of Birth:
      Fort Worth, Texas
    1. Education:
      B.A. in History, Harvard University, 1966; M.A.T. Program, University of Chicago, 1968; M.Ed., U. of Massachusetts, 1973
    2. Website:

Read an Excerpt

Thinking of You

To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die.
— Thomas Campbell

Sophie's face faded into the gray winter light of the sitting room. She dozed in the armchair that Joe had bought for her on their fortieth anniversary. The room was warm and quiet. Outside it was snowing lightly.

At a quarter past one the mailman turned the corner onto Allen Street. He was behind on his route, not because of the snow, but because it was Valentine's day and there was more mail than usual. He passed Sophie's house without looking up. Twenty minutes later he climbed back into his truck and drove off.

Sophie stirred when she hear the mail truck pull away, then took off her glasses and wiped her mouth and eyes with the handkerchief she always carried in her sleeve. She pushed herself up using the arm of the chair for support, straightened slowly and smoothed the lap of her dark green housedress.

Her slippers made a soft, shuffling sound on the bare floor as she walked to the kitchen. She stopped at the sink to wash the two dishes she had left on the counter after lunch. Then she filled a plastic cup halfway with water and took her pills. It was one forty-five.

There was a rocker in the sitting room by the front window. Sophie eased herself into it. In a half-hour the children would be passing by on their way home from school. Sophie waited, rocking and watching the snow.

The boys came first, as always, running and calling out things Sophie could not hear. Today they were making snowballs as they went, throwing them at one another, One snowball missed and smacked hard into Sophie's window. She jerked backward, and the rocker slippedoff the edge of the oval rug.

The girls dilly-dallied after the boys, in twos and threes, cupping their mitered hands over the mouths and giggling. Sophie wondered if they were telling each other about the valentines they had received at school. One pretty girl with long brown hair stopped and pointed to the window where Sophie sat watching. Sophie slipped her face behind the drapes, suddenly self-conscious.

When she looked out again, the boys and girls were gone. It was cold by the window, but she stayed there watching the snow cover the children's footprints.

A florist's truck turned onto Allen Street. Sophie followed it with her eyes. It was moving slowly. Twice it stopped and started again. Then the driver pulled up in from of Mrs. Mason's house next door and parked.

Who would be sending Mrs. Mason flowers? Sophie wondered, Her daughter in Wisconsin? Or her brother? No, her brother was very ill. It was probably her daughter. How nice of her.

Flowers made Sophie think of Joe and, for a moment, she let the aching memory fill her. Tomorrow was the fifteenth. Eight months since his death.

The flower man was knocking at Mrs. Mason's front door. He carried a long white and green box and a clipboard. No one seemed to be answering. Of course! It was Friday — Mrs. Mason quilted at the church on Friday afternoons. The delivery man looked around, then started toward Sophie's house.

Sophie shoved herself out of the rocker and stood close to the drapes. The man knocked. Her hands trembled as she straightened her hair. She reached her front hall on his third knock.

"Yes?" she said, peering around a slightly opened door.

"Good afternoon, ma'am," the man said loudly. "Would you take a delivery for your neighbor?"

"Yes," Sophie answered, pulling the door wide open.

"Where would you like me to put them?" the man asked politely as he strode in.

"In the kitchen, please. On the table." The man looked big to Sophie. She could hardly see his face between his green cap and full beard. Sophie was glad he left quickly, and she locked the door after him.

The box was as long as the kitchen table. Sophie drew near to it and bent over to read the lettering: "NATALIE'S Flowers for Every Occasion." The rich smell of roses engulfed her. She closed her eyes and took slower breaths, imagining yellow roses. Joe had always chosen yellow. "To my sunshine," he would say, presenting the extravagant bouquet. He would laugh delightedly, kiss her on the forehead, then take her hands in his and sing to her "You Are my Sunshine."

It was five o'clock when Mrs. Mason knocked at Sophie's front door. Sophie was still at the kitchen table. The flower box was now open though, and she held the roses on her lap, swaying slightly and stroking the delicate yellow petals. Mrs. Mason knocked again, but Sophie did not hear her, and after several minutes the neighbor left.

Sophie rose a little while later, laying the flowers on the kitchen table. Her cheeks were flushed. She cragged a stepstool across the kitchen floor and lifted a white porcelain vase from the top corner cabinet. Using a drinking glass, she filled the vase with water, then tenderly arranged the roses and greens, and carried them into the sitting room.,

She was smiling as she reached the middle of the room. She turned slightly and began to dip and twirl in small circles. She stepped lightly, gracefully, around the sitting room, into the kitchen, down the hall, back again. She danced till her knees grew weak, and then she dropped into the armchair and slept.

At a quarter past six, Sophie awoke with a start. Someone was knocking on the back door this time. It was Mrs. Mason.

"Hello, Sophie," Mrs. Mason said. "How are you? I knocked at five and was a little worried when you didn't come. Were you napping?" She chattered as she wiped her snowy boots on the welcome mat and stepped inside. "I just hate snow, don't you? The radio says we might have six inches by midnight, but you can never trust them, you know. Do you remember last winter when they predicted four inches and we had twenty-one? Twenty-one! And they said we'd have a mild winter this year. Ha! I don't think it's been over zero in weeks. Do you know what my oil bill was last month? For my little house!"

Sophie was only half-listening. She had remembered the roses suddenly and was turning hot with shame. The empty flower box was behind her on the kitchen table. What would she say to Mrs. Mason?

"I don't know how much longer I can keep paying the bills. If only Alfred, God bless him, had been as careful with money as your Joseph. Joseph! Oh, good heavens! I almost forgot about the roses."

Sophie's cheeks burned. She began to stammer an apology, stepping aside to reveal the empty box.

"Oh, good," Mrs. Mason interrupted. "You put the roses in water. Then you saw the card. I hope it didn't startle you to see Joseph's handwriting. Joseph had asked me to bring you the roses the first year, so I could explain for him. He didn't want to alarm you. His 'Rose Trust' I think he called it. He arranged it with the florist last April. Such a good man, your Joseph"

But Sophie had stopped listening. Her heart was pounded as she picked up the small white envelope she had missed earlier. It had been lying beside the flower box all the time. With trembling hands, she removed the card.

"To my sunshine," it said. "I love you with all my heart. Try to be happy when you think of me. Love, Joe."

Alicia von Stamwitz

© 1998 Alicia von Stamwitz. All rights reserved. Reprinted from Chicken Soup for the Couple's Soul by Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen, Barbara DeAngelis, mark Donnelly and Chrissy Donnelly. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the written permission of the publisher. Publisher: Health Communications, Inc., 3201 SW 15th Street, Deerfield Beach, FL 33442.

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Table of Contents

Introduction xi

1 Love and Intimacy

Thinking of You Alicia von Stamwitz 2

Someone to Watch Over Me Sharon Wajda 7

Hungry for Your Love Herman Roma Rosenblat as told to Barbara De Angelis, Ph.D 11

Shmily Laura Jeanne Allen 16

An Irish Love Story George Target 20

Berry Mauve or Muted Wine? T. Suzanne Eller 26

A Gentle Caress Daphna Renan 29

The Metal Box Ann Landers 32

The Greatest Gift of All Nancy Taylor Robson 34

What Does It Mean to Be a Lover? Barbara De Angelis, Ph.D 37

2 Finding True Love

A Test of Faith Bryan Smith 40

Damaged Goods Joanna Slan 48

The Fortune Cookie Prophecy Don Buehner 51

Will Power Barbara De Angelis, Ph.D 57

Streaking for Love Carole Bellacera 59

Lemonade and a Love Story Justin R. Haskin 61

A Second Chance Diana Chapman 66

Against All Odds Skip Hollandsworth 72

3 On Commitment

The Promise Thomas F. Crnm 85

Fifty Ways to Love Your Partner Mark Chrissy Donnelly 87

Saving My Husband's Life Lorraine Lengkeek as told to Deborah Monis 89

Just Dial 911 Cynthia C. Muchnick 96

A Prayer for Couples Marianne Williamson 98

How Do I Love Thee? Lilian Kew 100

Till Death Us Do Part Barbara De Angelis, Ph.D 103

The Well Wisher Katharine Byrne 105

Love Unspoken Margie Parker 110

Inseparable Susan Ager 112

4 Understanding Each Other

I'll See You in My Dreams Paul Reiser 116

The Scorecard Marguerite Murer 120

Getting Connected Thorn Hunter 123

Reverse Roles The Best of Bits & Pieces 126

A Tight Situation Barbara D. Starkey 128

The Richest Woman in the World Barbara De Angelis, Ph.D 131

The Mayonnaise War Nick Harrison 134

Behind Every Great Man Is a Great Woman The Best of Bits & Pieces 137

An Affair to Remember Patrick O'Neill 139

Coming Home Cathy Grant as told to Samantha Glen and Mary Pesaresi 142

5 Overcoming Obstacles

Where Love Lands Diana Chapman 148

Derian's Gift of Love Patsy Keech 153

Engraved in His Heart Elizabeth Songster 157

A Moment of Comfort Brad Steiger 160

New Sneakers Kim Lonette Trabucco 163

Married to a Stranger Thomas Fields-Meyer Michael Haederle 167

The Wives of Weinsberg Charlotte Yonge 172

Love Me Tender Jacklyn Lee Lindstrom 174

Is There Really a Prince Charming? Diana Chapman 179

Do You Want Me? Park York 184

6 On Family

A Legend of Love LeAnn Thieman 188

Belonging Bob Welch 192

Someone to Have Maxim M. Davis 197

Taking Pictures Ken Grote 200

The Wink Karen Culver 204

The Little Red Boots Jeannie S. Williams 208

The Real Family Circus William E. Smart 212

All the Days of Your Life Neil Simon 214

Tender Moments Florence Jane Soman 223

An Unbreakable Bond Jann Mitchell 230

7 The Flame that Still Burns

My Girl, My Wife Charlton Heston 236

Wednesdays David A Manzi 241

Forever Young Shari Cohen 244

I Still Love You Geoffrey Douglas 246

Just a Tuesday Dorothy Walker 249

The Loving Compliment Leo Buscaglia 252

My Home Is Where My Husband Is People magazine 253

Baby, You Are… David L. Weatherford 256

On Our Twentieth Wedding Anniversary Maggie Bedrosian 258

Smile at the One You Love Eileen Egan 262

Above All, Love Barbara Lazear Ascher 263

8 Eternal Love

Rice Pudding Roxanne Willems Snopek 268

Remember Africa? Jo Beth McDaniel 272

A Sign of His Love Patricia Forbes 277

The Waiting Ann W. Compton 279

The Angel's Gift Joan Wester Anderson 284

Love After Divorce Bonnie Furman 287

The Dance Thelda Bevens 290

Sarah's Last Request Ray L. Lundy 293

One More Kiss from Rose Laura Lagana 297

Life Without Michael Cindy London Kathryn Casey 300

One Last Good-Bye Karen Corkern Babb 306

Who Is Jack Canfield? 310

Who Is Mark Victor Hansen? 311

Who Is Barbara De Angelis, Ph.D.? 312

Who Are Mark and Chrissy Donnelly? 313

Contributors 315

Permissions 323

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