This Week's Featured Stories

If you're looking for a laugh, a midday pick-me-up or a dose of inspiration, you'll love our featured stories. You can read three free stories every month by picking from the selection below or by searching through every Chicken Soup for the Soul story ever published using the box to the right. You can also have stories delivered right to your inbox with our free, featured story emails. If you'd like to have unlimited access and be able to choose the perfect story for any moment, sign up for a premium subscription and have the freedom to enjoy any of our 20,000+ stories any time!


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1: Thanks for the Flowers

Thanks for the Flowers Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference. ~Winston Churchill The strains of Barbra Streisand and Neil Diamond singing, “You don’t bring me flowers anymore…. You don’t sing me love songs…” drifted into my room via the radio. The lyrics, designed to rip one’s heart out, matched my mood that cold, dreary January morning. I wrapped the poignant words around my heart as I dressed for an early morning speaking engagement. How true, I thought — the last time David brought me flowers was twenty-five years ago, when our youngest son Bob was born. This morning David had already left for work in our more reliable car. I bundled up against the cold and headed out for the dreaded task of starting the old Chrysler. The beast normally took great offense at the cold and refused to start without coaxing. To start it, one had to find the lever inside the grill to release the hood, lift it, and then find the stick to prop it open. Next, one had to remove the wing nut from the big round thing, take it off, push the little copper thing, get back inside the car and start it. If it went “Pfft,” one had to go back outside and push the copper thing again. If it started coughing and then actually turned... (more)
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2: The Gold Ring Club

The Gold Ring Club Two souls, one heart. ~French saying used on poesy rings Lately, I’ve been showing off my wedding ring. No, it isn’t new and not particularly clean — I gave up trying to keep lotion and meatloaf out of the diamonds sometime after the rigors of motherhood had snuffed most of the youth out of me. Sort of without warning though, my gold wedding set has become a national treasure. It’s like a fossil found unexpectedly during an annual fishing trip, brought home and displayed for neighbors, who stand around marveling, “Well, would you look at THAT!” as they inspect something so primeval and antique. People ask to see my fossil. My children are getting to the age now where they are attending weddings with interest and they know people who are engaged to be married. Each bride’s flashy platinum wedding set must instantly invoke images for my kids of their mom’s ancient gold ring — the ring they have seen most often because it is connected to the hand that wipes the counter, their noses, and tears from their face. When my children ask to see the ring, it is no passing glance; they examine it closely and with the fascination of seeing a trinket that has washed ashore from the Titanic. “So, this is the ring... (more)
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3: A Different Story

A Different Story There is no more lovely, friendly and charming relationship,communion or company than a good marriage. ~Martin Luther “I just want what you and John have,” my beautiful forty-something single friend tells me. Immediately humbled, I realize that I heard the same thing from a single, searching, female cousin just recently. My husband John and I have not even been together for that long. I am overcome by humility, pleasure, and almost wistfulness because I “want what we have” as well. I wanted it long before I met John and my life has been a whirlwind ever since, and here I am living out my own dreams. We met when we were thirty-four years old. In a short time we realized that we loved each other and desired the same things: marriage and a family. By my thirty-fifth birthday we were in the middle of planning a wedding and enjoying every date we spent together. When I turned thirty-six, we’d been married almost six months, had our own home and found ourselves settling into our lives together. We had occasional fights that make me laugh now. Mostly we worried about the other invading our space and freedom; we’d been single for so long we had to relearn the concept of sharing. By my thirty-seventh birthday, I’d spent much of... (more)
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4: The Day I Ran Away from Home

The Day I Ran Away from Home Having someone wonder where you are when you don’t come home at night is a very old human need. ~Margaret Mead I stood at the front door, looking out over the cold wet lawn. It had been a soggy couple of weeks. Overhead, the sky hung low and gray. The big oak, stripped barren, pointed crooked fingers toward the heavens as if pleading for the sun’s warmth. I echoed that sentiment. Would the sun ever shine again? I don’t know what came over me, but in that moment, I longed to run away from home, to an exotic place filled with sunshine and sea, where no one knew my name, where the wind blew through my hair, and umbrellas were used only for shade. Have you ever wished, even for a split second, to drive off to places unknown, alone? To a place where you don’t have to deal with the same old issues that keep turning up through the years, seemingly never to be resolved? There was that time I actually did run away, sort of. The details went something like this. It was late one evening. I don’t recall what it was about, but The Man and I had a very big and ugly argument. We both said things we didn’t mean and, in the end, I said, “I’m leaving,” and he said, “Good. The sooner, the better.” I... (more)