Chicken Soup for the Single Parent's Soul: Stories of Hope, Healing and Humor [NOOK Book]


Every single parent has a different story to tell, but a common thread of hope and comfort unites them all.
Being a single parent can sometimes seem overwhelming. But the joys and triumphs of this special responsibility are incalculable.
Whether you are a single parent because of divorce or ...
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Chicken Soup for the Single Parent's Soul: Stories of Hope, Healing and Humor

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Every single parent has a different story to tell, but a common thread of hope and comfort unites them all.
Being a single parent can sometimes seem overwhelming. But the joys and triumphs of this special responsibility are incalculable.
Whether you are a single parent because of divorce or widowhood, by choice or by surprise, you are part of an extraordinary club, shouldering the many obligations and responsibilities of parenting alone.
Chicken Soup for the Single Parent’s Soul shares the joys, challenges, and humorous moments of single moms and dads, who cope daily with the unique pressures, constraints, and sacrifices this important role brings. From daily struggles to amazing triumphs, this book captures the breadth of experiences that define single parenting.
Within these pages you will find inspiration and advice for getting through the difficult times, reassurance for those days when you worry you’re not living up to expectations, and reminders of the unique influence you have on your children’s lives.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781453276273
  • Publisher: Chicken Soup for the Soul Publishing
  • Publication date: 8/14/2012
  • Series: Chicken Soup for the Soul Series
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 400
  • Sales rank: 221,453
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Jack Canfield

Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen are the #1 New York Times and USA Today bestselling authors of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series. They are professional speakers who have dedicated their lives to enhancing the personal and professional development of others.
Laurie Hartman has been a single parent for nine years, raising one terrific son who is now 15. Laurie lives in Southern California.
 Nancy Vogl is the single mother of three teenage daughters. Formerly a real estate professional, Nancy created a career for herself in the speaking industry, working with many of America’s top speakers, authors, and celebrities. 


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 "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

Come Back Home

All of us, at certain moments of our lives, need to take advice and receive help from other people.

~ Alexis Carrel

Finally, I had to admit to myself that I wasn’t making it on my own as a single parent with a four-year-old son and a thirteen-month-old daughter. Reluctantly, I had written my parents asking if I could move in with them until I could find a teaching position and manage on my own. I knew it would not be an easy decision for them to make. Living in a small town, my mother had always worried about “what people would think.”

Her response came more quickly than I had expected. As I held her unopened letter, I wondered if the rapid reply was good news or bad. With careful concern, I tore open the end of the envelope. Her typewritten letter was folded in the formal standard she had learned as a secretary after graduating from high school. It read:

Dear Linda,

You must quit beating up on yourself and feeling so ashamed over needing to move back home with the children because of your divorce. I want you to know that you are not the first woman in our family to be a single parent and fall on hard times. I hope you will find courage and take pride in the woman I am going to tell you about.

Your great-great-grandmother, Hannah Lappin, headed west in a prairie schooner with her farmer husband and three small children: a boy, six; a girl, two, and an infant son. They settled in a secluded section of Missouri. After five years of her husband’s tremendous effort clearing timber, rumors circulated that land, including their claim, was in litigation. Days of anxiety followed, and her husband’s health began to fail. He was diagnosed with tuberculosis, and his strength diminished steadily. They lost their farm. They made the difficult decision to make the four-hundred-mile trip back to southern Illinois to her family. There was nothing about this trip that held any attraction for a woman with three children and an invalid husband in the early spring of 1876. On many days, he was too sick to travel. At night, he would sleep outside under the wagon.

Inevitably he died, and left his family among strangers in the hill country of Missouri.

He was buried along the trail under a pile of stones. Their eleven-year-old son took the reins of the wagon and skillfully drove the team through the ten-mile-wide city of St. Louis and across the big river, still a hundred miles from their family.

Hannah’s problems were further complicated by her failing eyesight and the awareness that she was several months pregnant. Shortly after arriving at her Uncle David’s home, she gave birth to twin boys. Refusing charity from the state, she took in washing. Making light of her blindness, she promised people, “The stains may still be in the clothes, but I will get the stink out.” Her great poverty and lack of comfort was felt by her orphaned children, but it was no match for her unwavering faith in God and her ability to give thanks in all things. The three youngest sons became ministers. The oldest son returned to the West to build railroads across Kansas to Denver. Ida, her daughter, after ten years of wedded life, was left a widow with four small children. The example of her mother’s faith and determination inspired her, knowing her mother’s burden had been a hundred times heavier.

Linda, did you not realize that World War II made me a single parent while Daddy was overseas for two years? I had to go back to live with my parents on their farm, miles from town and friends. But it was such a blessing in disguise because Grandma was willing to rock you when you had constant earaches, and I was able to help her with her household chores. Your daddy sent us ration books, so I could get sugar and shoes and gasoline to supplement my folks’ needs.

Now that you understand that you were not the first woman in our family to be a single parent, please come back home knowing that your parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, sisters and cousins are here to be family for you. With the rich heritage of women who have found a way to give their children a wonderful future, in spite of hardships, you will be in very good company.

Come back home as soon as possible.

Love always,


Linda H. Puckett

©2005. All rights reserved. Reprinted from Chicken Soup for the Single Parent's Soul Soul® by Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen, Laurie Hartman & Nancy Vogl
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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 29, 2005


    I think single parents are the ones who need hope most often and here it is. I know that i have written my own little stories about my three boys in my 'single parenthood'. The stories i write give me the strenght to go on. Reading how others do it is such a tremendeous help to keeping your sanity. It's a pick me up book that always picks you up.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 18, 2005

    Much Needed Inspiration for Single Parents!

    A long time fan of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series, I was thrilled when I found out about the recent publication of 'Chicken Soup for the Single Parent's Soul'! It's about time! After all, who needs extra inspiration, positive reminders, and good heartwarming stories of those who have persevered despite many hardships....more than single parents? It is a tough job we endure as single parents, but we have to stay positive for ourselves and for our children. Single Parent's Soul is filled with stories, by and for single mothers and fathers, that will remind you of your sense of pride, of love, and of humanity in the role that you serve in your children's life. It is a must have for those times when life seems too much to handle!

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    Posted January 8, 2009

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    Posted October 19, 2012

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    Posted April 9, 2012

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