By: Gail Bernice Holland
Publisher: Modern History Press
Publication Date: March 2010
Reviewed by: Ellen Feld
Review Date: March 19, 2011
There are a myriad of books on the market talking about “miracles among us” or “live each day as if it is your last,” but for the average person, it’s hard to get motivated by miracles others have witnessed and if you live each day as if it’s your last, you just might do things you regret. What sets Love Each Day apart from all those other titles is that the author has collected a series of stories of everyday people, doing everyday things and seeing the beauty in the simplest and most wonderful of places.
Love Each Day is a collection of 40 “true inspirational stories” that truly are moving and encouraging. In her introduction, the author notes that, “For many of us, too many days are diluted and even destroyed by worry, emotional stress, and obligatory work…hundreds of days fade each year into oblivion, lost in a blur of busyness.” (pg. iii). Just how does the “average” person stay motivated through the mundane daily chores of life? We can’t expect to witness a miracle every day, nor can we live every day as if it’s our last. Why? Because while it’s easy to say, if it were your last day, you’d make decisions and do things that you’d never do if you knew you had to pay your heating bill the next day! No, says the author, those things won’t work. We need to see, and appreciate, the beauty in the world around us and she shows us how by providing examples from others. Whether rich, poor, famous, or unknown, those featured in this book have discovered the true beauty of life and share their experiences for the benefit of readers.
At three or four pages each, the individual stories in Love Each Day don’t take long to read. There is a short introduction to each person at the start of their chapter, followed by the event that holds the most meaning to them. There is no analysis provided by the author, just the thoughts of the person retelling the story – why the memory holds meaning to them. I found this very effective as each individual had a different idea of what was important, but when brought together in one book, the life lessons all merged together. And together, they prove that whether it’s meeting your future bride or winning the Nobel Prize, you must learn to treasure what truly matters to YOU.
As mentioned, those highlighted in this book have found joy in the simplest of places and I found those discoveries refreshing and also sticking with me long after I finished reading. The book opens with Huston Street, the very successful baseball player, sharing his special day, not out on the field, but out on a little row boat, spending time with his future wife on their first date. The story was sweet and really made me think about what is important. It’s not the career, the building up of a resume, but rather people, family and friends, who mean the most. Throughout this book, many of those featured regarded someone or something from their personal lives, rather than a career highlight, as the most meaningful.
One of my favorite vignettes was of the college professor who found meaning, not in his job, but on a trip to Paris, France. Renting a drafty apartment, he and his wife made the best of things and were having a good time until they realized that they’d forgotten to make reservations for that night’s dinner – New Year’s Eve. Too late to get reservations, they found themselves dining on bread and cheese in the drafty apartment and having a grand time. Without any game plan, they explored the city that night, and found things that Parisians did on New Year’s Eve. They stumbled upon a park and, with a bottle of champagne, joined city dwellers watching fireworks. It is that memory that remains with them to this day.
One of the nicest things about this book was the insightful remarks found throughout that could become mantras for staying positive and enjoying life. From, “everyone perceives beauty in a different way,” (pg. 18) to a collection of quotes at the end of the book such as, “every day is precious and every moment you can either talk to your family or be with them is a blessing,” (pg. 118), you’ll walk away from this book with a plethora of new sayings to keep you optimistic.
Because each story is relatively brief and independent of the others, this is the perfect book to flip through and read when you need some inspiration. Each chapter has a topic heading so you have a good idea of the theme and there's no need to read the chapters in order. Indeed, you may prefer to move around to find stories that seem particularly well suited to your life. But don't be surprised if a topic that seems completely out of your realm is the one that really hits home.
When you need to be reminded of the important things in life, or you want a warm and fuzzy feeling from reading wonderful, meaningful stories, start reading Love Each Day.
Quill says: Through Love Each Day, the author teaches us how to see the beauty in the simplest of events and to truly enjoy life.
For more information on Love Each Day: Live Each Day So You Would Want to Live it Again, please visit the author's website at: www.AuthorGBR.com