Living Life in Full Bloom: 120 Daily Practices to Deepen Your Passion, Creativity & Relationships, by Elizabeth Murray, is a book overflowing with heart and practically radiating light. As I turned the pages, I kept thinking about who might enjoy this book as much as I was. Certainly this is a book that gardeners, artists, and those who experience life deeply would appreciate. Something about the book feels like it was meant to be a gift, even if only from the higher part of our selves to the everyday part.
While Life in Full Bloom is promoted as a self-help book, it feels more like a little vacation to a kinder, more thoughtful world. It is filled with art and photos, many of which I could easily get lost in. The book is also filled with stories about people who are living life in “full bloom,” including 92 year-old Betty Peck, who has dedicated her life to cultivating children’s imagination and teaching them about nature. Growing up, Murray was influenced by the Quakers, and it is easy to see how this shaped the book. While the book is beautiful, it does not shy away from sadness and grief, which are a natural part of life. Honestly, I could take or leave the more self-help focused parts of the book. For me, they take away from the overall flow and feel of the book.
Today I am going to reluctantly return my overdue copy of Living in Full Bloom to my local library, which has a waiting list for it. I feel like I am returning from a town where I secretly would like to live. A tiny part of the book has made its way into my consciousness, but I want so much more.