“There are many little ways to enlarge your child’s world. Love of books is the best of all.” - Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis What was the most profound book you ever read? How has it changed your life? We are incredibly lucky to live in a time when we can learn just about anything we want, simply by opening a book (or for that matter, a browser). We have limitless information at our fingertips. And sometimes it can be hard to find the real gems in the midst of so many choices. The truth is, every book ever written has the potential to change our lives for the better. We just need to find the ones that speak to our souls. This month, as we commit to expanding our potential as extraordinary parents, the Lifebook Team would like to share a list of books that have changed our lives and families in truly significant ways. This list serves as a beautiful guide from conception to pregnancy, birthing and beyond (and is presented in the order we recommend reading). These are books that have elevated our parenting, and permanently transformed our relationships with the little people we love most. We hope you enjoy. (And please do share your favorite parenting books with us in the comments!)

Written by Lifebook Member Dr. Joel Wade When we love someone, and they enter a room, that room gets a little brighter for us, like the lights have been turned up a notch. What brings that glow, that brightness from another fellow human being? Love is too rich and complex to boil down to some single facet or data point; but one of the essential elements that goes into feeling love for one another, is the experience of being seen. When we fall in love with someone, we aren’t just seeing who they are, we’re seeing the best of who they are; and to see and be seen in this way is one of the greatest, deepest joys of life. One of the central qualities of happy marriages is that both partners continue to see each other that way over time. Researchers have found that happy mates always rate their partner more highly than other friends or observers do. This is not some fantasy pretense or delusional wishful thinking. We are complex beings. Within every person is a rich world that takes time to understand. We are each full of aspirations and abilities and courage that aren’t obvious to just anybody. It takes getting to know somebody deeply to see what they’re made of; and in that knowing, a loving mate will choose the best of possibilities to focus on, to reflect back towards, and in that way, to encourage more of. In contrast, when love dies, that focus turns toward criticism and disappointment, and the gaze moves to see those very same qualities that once inspired and delighted now as weaknesses or irritations. This is a choice that each of us can make at any moment in time; we can choose to see the best in another person… or the worst. If you want love to grow, choose the former.

By:  Lifebook Member Chris Condon When I turned 21, I decided to become a real estate agent.  My timing was excellent as the greatest boom market ever was just getting started.  In 2006, I bought my first home and 2007 was my best year financially. I was doing pretty well for a 27-year old. In 2008 I was on track to have another great year, until August when the world began to change. In a two-week period, I had over $60,000 in potential income vanish as deals began to fall apart.  All my clients where scared about the future and backed out of contracts. That’s when I realized that being a real estate agent had just gotten very difficult. With little to no money coming in and plenty of expenses, I began racking up credit card debt.  I also borrowed money from my parents.  I had about $10,000 in credit card debt and had borrowed $10,000 from my parents trying to survive. In June 2009, I realized that I can’t borrow my way out of this problem and in order to survive, I have to stop making my mortgage payment.  I decided to put a “for sale” sign in the yard and sell my home. In December, the official foreclosure was filed.  By the end of 2009 I had worked very hard all year, but only earned $13,000 in total income. It was about this time when I first learned about Lifebook and attended the March 2010 session.  I would like to say that from then on, my life has been a fairy tale, but honestly that is not the case.

"We all have an obligation as citizens of this earth to leave the world a healthier, cleaner, and better place for our children and future generations.” -Blythe Danner “When we recognize the virtues, the talent, the beauty of Mother Earth, something is born in us, some kind of connection; love is born. -Nhat Hanh Knowing that we’re doing our best to become better people on a daily basis is one of the truest definitions of success, and one of the most important things we can do to create happiness and fulfillment in our lives. But what about the bigger picture? Part of our calling to become better human beings entails devoting ourselves to causes that are bigger than us… to committing greater acts of love, care and devotion for our beautiful planet, and all of its inhabitants. Here are 17 documentary films that will turn your focus toward the impact you have on the world, and help you become an even better global citizen.

“The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only one page.” -St. Augustine Lifebook Travel has traversed 6 of the planet’s 7 continents, and seen countries such as Peru, Belgium, China, Indonesia, Tanzania, Hawaii, Australia, Vietnam, Morocco, Egypt, Kenya, South Africa, and many more… This year, Jon and Missy are hosting THREE trips to one of the most magically exotic locations on Earth… Bali, Indonesia! Join us where jungle, mountain and ocean converge, in one of the world’s most lush tropical paradises. Experience a magnificent adventure with an intimate group of incredible, likeminded Lifebook Members (including Jon and Missy!), and create memories that will last a lifetime! There are currently 3 trips available. Lifebook Trips always sell out lightning fast, so if you’re interested, reply today for more information! Please note that Lifebook Travel is only available to Lifebook Members.

Love is the most powerful force in the universe… the one that governs all others. Love multiplies the best we have, and gives meaning to our lives. It is through love that we come face to face with the divine. And while the word “love” has become over-used and under-valued, here are 20 beautiful quotes that capture the essence of its mystery and magic.

The world sure does LOVE sugar. Look closely and you’ll find it in just about everything… The average jar of store-bought spaghetti sauce has more sugar than a box of poptarts, and while you may be aware that your breakfast cereal is full of the sweet stuff, most people are surprised to discover that so, too, is the milk we pour into it (one serving of organic whole milk averages 11 grams of sugar). That’s almost 3 teaspoons of sugar, dumped right into your kid’s glass of milk (4 grams = 1 teaspoon of sugar)! This troubling topic is the focus of the latest food documentary, Fed Up, in which Katie Couric digs deep into the obesity epidemic, and discovers a surprising culprit… Sugar - not fat - is making us fat. Whether this shocking information is new to you, or you’re well versed in the sugar epidemic our society seems to be facing… It’s time for us to take a long, hard look at the flood of sugar that’s sneaking its way into our bodies through just about everything we put in our mouths.