Bloom: Finding Beauty in the Unexpected--A Memoir

Bloom: Finding Beauty in the Unexpected--A Memoir

by Kelle Hampton
4.0 85


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Bloom: Finding Beauty in the Unexpected--A Memoir by Kelle Hampton

“In her tender and genuinely beautiful memoir, Kelle Hampton encourages us to not simply accept the unexpected circumstances of our lives, but to embrace them like the things we wished for all along.”
—Matthew Logelin, New York Times bestselling author of Two Kisses for Maddy

Bloom is an inspiring and heartfelt memoir that celebrates the beauty found in the unexpected, the strength of a mother’s love, and, ultimately, the amazing power of perspective. The author of the popular blog Enjoying the Small Things—named The Bump’s Best Special Needs Blog and The Blog You’ve Learned the Most From in the 2010 BlogLuxe Awards—Kelle Hampton interweaves lyrical prose and stunning four-color photography as she recounts the unforgettable story of the first year in the life of her daughter Nella, who has Down syndrome. Poignant, eye-opening, and heart-soaring, Hampton’s Bloom is ultimately about embracing life and really living it.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062045034
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 04/03/2012
Pages: 278
Product dimensions: 7.20(w) x 9.40(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Writer and photographer Kelle Hampton chronicles the simple joys of motherhood and daily life on her popular blog, Enjoying the Small Things. An advocate for individuals with Down syndrome, she has been honored by both the National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS) and the National Down Syndrome Congress (NDSC), receiving the NDSC National Media Award in 2010. Kelle lives in Naples, Florida, with her husband, Brett; their two daughters, Lainey and Nella; and her stepsons, Austyn and Brandyn.

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Bloom: Finding Beauty in the Unexpected--A Memoir 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 85 reviews.
JMcGregor More than 1 year ago
Bloom is a beautiful, emotional, and powerfully honest journey through Kelle Hampton's first year with her daughter Nella, who is unexpectedly born with Down syndrome. Kelle is a skilled writer, and she has a keen ability to make you cry your eyes out or laugh hysterically with the turn of a sentence. I walked away from this book with a newfound, positive perspective on handling life's challenges, along with an urge to make a difference in the lives of those who are labeled "different" by our society. And while the book is a great read, it's also full-color throughout with stunning photos and one of the most gorgeous designs I've ever seen. This is definitely an object you'll want to have on your coffee table--you'll continue looking through the photographs days after you've finished the book and will want to share them with others. I noticed that the book has received some 1-star reviews here, which seemed unbelievable until I actually read them. If you're not a follower of Kelle's blog, you're probably not aware that her optimism and zest for life--coupled with her success in the blogosphere--has sadly earned her a small following of "haters." I imagine that they're the ones lurking here, and I do hope that Barnes and Noble monitors their website reviews. Personal rants about Kelle and her blog do not constitute book reviews and I doubt that those people even read the book. If they did, they would find themselves moved to be kinder people who are more accepting of others.
gmanGB More than 1 year ago
This book is a must read for everyone. It chronicles the first year of Kelle's life with daughter Nella , but anyone dealing with something unexpected can take something from the well written text and beautiful pictures. Kelle's words and pictures make you feel like you are right their experiencing everything right along with her. I do not understand how the majority of review are very favorable and just a few ( all anonymous) are so low. Were these low reviewers reading the same book!! Read the book , you will not be disappointed!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The writing in this book is stunning. So emotional and vulnerable. I could not put it down. Kelle is a controversial blogger because people are constantly attacking her for painting the picture of a "perfect" family. What they are missing is that Kelle's whole philosophy is to "look for the good." This is what she does, and it is inspirational, not fake or forced. The negative commenters are completely missing the point. She makes me want to be a better mother and a better person. Thank you Kelle.
IMtheBookLady More than 1 year ago
Kelle Hampton had me captivated from the very first page and I could not put this book (and my box of Kleenex!) down. I can't remember the last time I was actually sad to get to the end of a book because it meant that the experience was over. An inspiring debut and a must-read for anyone in need of some encouragement. Thank you, Kelle, for sharing your beautiful story.
CheryllFochtmann More than 1 year ago
I am 20 years older than Kelle Hampton with grown children and young grandchildren. I have learned more from reading Kelle's blog and book Bloom about what is important in life, raising and loving children, expressing emotions and standing up for the things that are important to me regardless of the perceptions of the world at large than I ever expected to experience. Bloom is an incredible, brutally honest and beautiful story of life. It has changed the way that I look at people with special abilities. Don't miss this life changing journey!
LindsayE More than 1 year ago
beautiful story of heartache, love, transformation, and friendship. Couldn't put it down. Kelle is such a beautiful writer. Favorite book Ive ever read.
JPA30 More than 1 year ago
This is a beautifully written memoir about the power love and acceptance. The writing is honest, vulnerable and raw. I felt an immediate connection with Kelle's emotions and cried and laughed with her story. One of the things that I loved more about Bloom is that shows society with its gorgeous photography that raising a child with Down syndrome is a beautiful and enriching experience, that "finding beauty in the unexpected" is possible. After reading this book, I'm feeling inspired to accept all individuals for who they are and to be more kind and compassionate towards others.
llively More than 1 year ago
I could not put the book down. I commend Kelle for having the humility and courage to step out and share her heartache with millions. Not many of us would do this! Thank you Kelle, for your honesty and how you have changed your image of outward perfection to inward perfection. In a media world that is so ugly, thank you for being a light
graceesmommy More than 1 year ago
I have followed Kelle's blog for 2 years and have been waiting patiently for this book to be released. The wait was well worth it. I know that on her blog she has a few people who are very hard on her because come on let's face it...she is beautiful (inside and out), she lives a good life and she is extremely talented..and I can see from some reviews that these people have left reviews. At this point I have purchased 10 Bloom books intended for a reading club I am hosting in the summer. In the meantime I have given out 6 books as gifts...they have been given to a wide spectrum of people..ages are all different..some follow the blog and some do not. The thing that I am most wanting to share is that every. single. person that I have shared this book with comes to the same conclusion...Kelle can write a book that we connect with. Life is not perfect, unexpected and sometimes just plain painful but if you face your reality (if it be infertily, DS, cancer) and be determined you will find will find will find peace. So to the unkind anonymous reviewers..well maybe you need to find the beauty in this book and in life. The fact is this book is a good. good. book and I am hoping that anyone using these reviews as a gauge to buying it will not be swayed to miss out on this beautiful story by a few who have always been jealous and cruel when in fact the woman they are attacking would give them the shirt off of her back and probably a hug..because you need it. Sincerely, Joy ( I think Anonymous is a cowardly way of attacking so I put my name here..proudly)
ThePaperMidwife More than 1 year ago
Although redundant at times, it was a great read that brought out a lot of feelings for my in many different areas of my life. I could see myself in the story as well as certain aspects of others around me. Even though the situation Kelle and her family faced and the challenges may be different, I recommend this book to anyone who may be having self doubt and need just a bit of healing in their soul. I read this book straight through and it was well worth the time. The author has a very enjoyable writing style that worked well for me.
SaraSmile82 More than 1 year ago
This is an amazing story of Kelle's journey as a mom learning to love unconditionally and find beauty in all sorts of circumstances. It is inspiring. It is encouraging to watch her take even what could be considered "nitty gritty" and not only remain positive, but thrive. A truly, amazing read for any glass-half-full kind of person. Bitter people, beware: this book is NOT for you! :)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I came across Kelle's blog when I was pregnant with my daughter. My daughter was diagnosed with Spina Bifida, and although it's not the same thing as down sydrome, I was so very grateful for her words. The emotions that she described are, in my opinion, pretty universal when it comes to children with special needs. The pain and the loss that you feel at first, and then to realize that you truly are blessed. I loved this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Touching and uplifting for everyone
Mamalovesbooks1 More than 1 year ago
I am an avid reader of memoirs and also the mother of a child with Down Syndrome. While I could identify with some of the basic tenets of what the author experienced with regard to her grieving process and could appreciate the amount of soul-bearing involved to share some of that, to a large extent it felt over the top. I don't know if it was the fact that the writing was just so bad or if it was some sort of reflection on the author and where she is at on a maturity level. There was way too much drama, way too many long-winded introductions of various friends who were part of her "net", too little in the way making any sort of real spiritual or emotional conclusions as to how this child changed her, too many beer and "dude" references... and way to much of what another reviewer aptly called "The Kelle Show." It just felt narcissistic to me. I was looking for what I found in "Roadmap to Holland" and "Expecting Adam." It just wasn't there. I think this author has much growing up to do in terms of life living, emotional maturity and thinking outside of herself before she can write a decent memoir that draws the reader in, leaves them with some piece of insight. This read like the diary of a 9th grade girl, which was disappointing, particularly given what was supposed to be the subject matter. It was long winded, redundant, sophomoric and clearly terribly edited. The photography is spectacular. I will say that.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Beautiful words paired with beautiful pictures. A must read, especially for anyone touched by Down syndrome.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was a great book! I couldn't put it down. I loved that she was so real with her feelings. I'm sure almost anyone would have felt the exact same way but not not a lot of people would be brave enough to share it like Kelle did. I don't know if i would have had the courage to admit my feelings like she did if i was in that situation. I really admire her. I wish nothing but happiness for kelle and her beautiful family!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
She has quite the interesting set up when she Gives birth but she is a Girl who knows what she wants that for sure haha, almost to prefect a life if you ask me but I am only 2 chapters in. SHe has more friends then anyone I know :P But so far I am enjoying it and have cried once only a few pages in. I would recommend it :)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Not what i expected but very good
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Without the photos, its just pretty generic. Have read MUCH better memoirs about raising a special needs child. Doesn't have enough depth, truth, realness and seasoned writer with more years of experience in the trenches. She's a marketers dream because she and her family have the "right look" which is why she's so popular with the "mainstream public" but with the special needs parents public? She's not really relatable. If you like looking at photos and being "inspired a la Hallmark" this is totally your thing. I wish her all the best, but it just doesn't do it for me. I actually live in the "real world" and it resembles nothing of hers. God bless, but I'm so "over" society's obsession with appearing perfect.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I fell in love with Nella and the Hampton family after discovering their blog a year ago. I longed to find THAT family and THAT story in this book. They were honest, vulnerable, and raw. They were beautiful and relatable. However, like the blog of late, this book has taken a different and unfortunate path. It feels like cotton candy -- full of gorgeous photography, but saccharin sweet in content. It was fun for the moment, but I don't walk away with much substance. Further, Hampton's writing is frustrating at times; even with an editor, it can read like an overly poetic stream of consciousness. I still adore Nella and her family, but I feel like the depth of the story has been lost. Their experience is now a business, and that "image marketing" comes across clearly in this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
kaitlynlenhart More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I found this book int he .25 cent bin at the pack'n'save.  Was this a story about a woman coming to terms with her disabled daughter or a sly way for Kelle to show off her privileged life? The pictures were nice but after you've seen a few they all become repetitive. Final verdict - it was "ok" would not buy again. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved reading Kelle's so I of course was really looking forward to reading her book when it came out. I couldn't even finish it. All I kept thinking was it was over the top. She acted as I would imagine a parent would when a child passes. Nella didn't pass away, she was born special. I cant imagine what it is like to have a DS child but I think Kelle took it over the top and that ruined it for me. It was almost like she wasn't even greatful that she had a baby to take home when so many people don't even have that. Each child is special, even if they have DS. What will her other children think when they are older and read this?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago