Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Happier at Home

Several weeks back I was contacted by the marketing director at Crown Archetype (a subsidiary of the publishing giant Random House) inquiring if I would be willing to review Gretchen Rubin's newest work Happier at Home.  The first thought that crossed my mind as I read Crown Archetype's email was: this email has got to be spam because no one in the in the publishing world knows that I exist.

But I did a little internet search to check out the email's credibility and lo and behold, it was valid! My second thought was "Holy crap, someone thinks I'm sort of a big deal and want me to review their book...how flippin' cool is that?". 

Ok, let's be real here - I have no idea if anyone thinks I'm a big deal (except maybe for my dog...I'm pretty sure she really likes me) but hey, if someone wants to send me a free book and all I have to do is review it, I'm in!

(c) Hudson Valley Green

To give you a little background info on Gretchen Rubin, a few years ago she started a one-year long journey which she dubbed her "Happiness Project".  She chronicled her adventures in learning to achieve greater happiness in a book which landed her on the New York Times Best Seller list. Not too shabby, eh? 

Ms. Rubin has followed up her Happiness Project with a new book, Happier at Home.  So when I received the book in the mail, I immediately poured myself a glass of wine and headed outside to the patio for a little readin' and relaxin'. 

I immediately liked the concept of Ms. Rubin's Happier at Home project.  After spending my entire September driving around the US, I could really relate.  Happiness is not something that's found on some remote beach or high on top of a mountain.  Happiness comes from within....in order to be the most happy, you have to start with yourself. 

Happier at Home, although an easy, quick read, is a powerful book.  I enjoy how Ms. Rubin intertwines anecdotal and empirical evidence and thought provoking commentary to create a fresh look at happiness.  Each chapter tackles an aspect in Ms. Rubin's life (possessions, marriage, parenthood, etc.) in which she identifies her own struggles and solutions.  She offers some very easy behavior-changing ideas that I've already started to incorporate into my own life.

So what does Happier at Home have to do with eco-friendly event planning in the Hudson Valley? Well, at first glance - not much.  I've been trying to tie it into our focus here at HVG but to no avail...

However, the majority of the visitors to HVG are in the process of wedding planning. It does no good to have a fabulous wedding and then not be happy in your marriage.  Being married is the hardest, most crazy, and most amazing thing I've ever done.  If you aren't happy (which really stinks in and of itself), that unhappiness can significantly affect your partner's happiness...and well, that's just a recipe for disaster.

So come on and get happy! And if you need some ideas on how to do it, 
take some advice from Gretchen Rubin! 

Happy Planning (and Happy Living!!!), 

I received no compensation for this review (other than the book itself).
 All opinions are my own and were not influenced by any party. 

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