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Stick a Geranium in Your Hat and Be Happy
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Stick a Geranium in Your Hat and Be Happy

4.12  ·  Rating details ·  506 ratings  ·  54 reviews
Boomerang blessings.

That's what Barbara Johnson calls the encouraging feedback she has received over the years from readers whose lives have been impacted by the message of this million-copy bestseller. If you need a fresh breath of joy in your life, this book is just the prescription for you.

With the wit of an Erma Bombeck, Barbara Johnson helps you to look for "life's li
Paperback, 208 pages
Published March 1st 2004 by Thomas Nelson (first published January 1st 1987)
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Nov 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
Love the subtitle...


Barb tells us HOW - maybe not to keep it all together - but to keep LAUGHING and SHARING, when YOUR WORLD IS FALLING APART!

Now, THAT’s an achievement for you...

Have you ever guarded a secret pain in your heart, one so INTENSE that it goes Beyond Mere Words?

Barb has.

Do you remember a time in your life, Before that Pain, that seemed like a paradisal Rose Garden in comparison to this Darkness?

Barb does.

Did it ever occur to you that by
Kimberly Rae
May 07, 2014 rated it really liked it
Encouraging and joyful. I have a hard time with the ALL CAPS and extra exclamation points, but I love her perspective, how she has gone through trial and tragedy and chosen joy and hope! Definitely recommend her books to anyone who needs a pick-me-up!
Barbara Johnson is an incrediably funny lady. Her books are witty, yet inspiring. Having had many difficulties in her own life, she lets us know we can choose to pick the flowers instead of the weeds.
Mar 16, 2010 rated it really liked it
This is a good book for those who might be struggling with trials. It is written with a very "Christian" slant. Lots of good blurbs and anecdotes. Upbeat
Sue Lauzon
Please don't slam me for this review as my opinions of this book may not reflect your opinions. I think I am being a bit generous giving this book a 2 star rating. Couldn't really justify a one star rating but at the same time couldn't go any higher either. It wasn't that the book was really bad just some of the author's viewpoints I certainly didn't agree with. I had to keep telling myself that the author was born when life was simpler and times have certainly changed along with how people view ...more
Dawn Grace-Jones
Feb 18, 2009 is currently reading it
I am learning to be happy.... no matter happy.....
Jun 24, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Good ideas but I didn't finish because I didn't like her criticism of homosexuality...
Apr 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is a great book for women who are overcoming tragedy. Barbara has a depth of understand that comforts one with humor and lots of funny insights to serious problems.
Dec 28, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2017
I love the concept of choosing to be happy, even with God involved in all things. I had to stop reading because of her views on homosexuality.
Jan 03, 2018 rated it liked it
I found points in this book I could relate to. It was an OK book. She has helped a lot of people with the writing of the book and by being a motivational speaker.
Jun 04, 2018 rated it liked it
This author has been recommended to me a couple of times. Overall she had some good info but it just wasn't my style.
Debra Clewer
Jan 28, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is an oldie but a goodie, as they say. The author was a woman who experienced family tragedy and depression, but rose above her circumstances to encourage and help others. She became a much-loved public speaker on the Christian circuit. Her philosophy was that we cannot avoid pain and suffering, so we need to find a way through it and move on, assisting others in the process. An uplifting and helpful book, she was totally honest about her pain and feelings. There are many little humourous q ...more
Jul 19, 2008 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: ugh. Somone who's pretty bored.
Recommended to Kimberley by: Flo the Psychic
First let me say that this book was suggested to me & I bought it almost blindly per that suggestion. I didn't realize how god-orientated it was nor how much the author would dwell and repeatedly grate over the fact that she has a homosexual son. It was actually supremely annoying and made it almost impossible for me to finish the book.

That being said, his book was ok in the sense that you are able to take out of it what you want & leave the rest behind. It goes to show that you are capa
Apr 02, 2014 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: not sure
This book was a two-for-one deal along with Splashed of Joy in the Cesspools of Life that I picked up off the free shelf at the library. This book is basically the same as the other book. She has a few different stories but both books have a lot of the same stories too. Don't really see how these got published as two separate books when they could have been combined into one.

Great quote on p. 5: "The only thing you can really control in this life is your own mental attitude.

Another good reminder
Karla Owen foisy
Feb 12, 2014 rated it it was ok
This book was recommended to me by a client, because the author has dealt with many difficult things in her life. She lost one son to war and the other in a drunk driving accident. Her other son soon after told her he was gay, and her husband became paralyzed and blind in a auto accident as well. Her premise is that life is what you make it (or how you think about it) which is all good, but she includes pages and pages of cliches and "happy phrases" and I think she sometimes "looks the other way ...more
Aug 14, 2011 rated it liked it
I didn't agree with Barbara on some of her views of things as they're somewhat outdated--such as homosexuality and men's abilities to express emotions--but I'll forgive her since those were the general ideas of people thirty years ago, when this was written. Overall, a good message about choosing to be happy when life is kicking you in the face from a woman who has every right to give up. (July 2009)
Feb 24, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: inspirational
I'll try to NEVER feel sorry for myself again. This is an interesting, though at times annoying, book about the author's many "trials" - some external, and other internal.

In part, it is helpful in reminding us that sometimes, we need to give up and let God do his work. The homosexual aspect was a real disappointment; really doesn't God want us to love one another? I won't be reading it again. Once was enough. But one does have to admire Barbara Johnson's pluck and determination.
Nov 13, 2008 is currently reading it
My sister Beth read this book awhile ago and highly recommended it! She said the stories that Barbara Johnson writes are so funny and just bring a realization of how truly blessed we are!! I can't wait to get started!!!
Aug 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone who enjoys The Women of Faith Ministry
Recommended to Carol by: sister
From an author who has lived what she has written about in So, Stick a Geranium In Your Hat and Be Happy, Barbara Johnson relates ways to focus on the positive and enjoy living in spite of difficult circumstances.
Oct 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Although I couldn't completely relate to many of her struggles, I found her insights entertaining and encouraging. My children are growing up and I know that I might be in for some not so fun changes. Reading this because I needed a laugh.
Lisa Mendiaz
Feb 25, 2008 rated it really liked it
Picked up this book while browsing a bookstore, not looking for anything in particular. It was a great find and a very light and easy read. I really enjoyed Barbara Johnson's writing style. She's very optimistic and uplifting.
Aug 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Encouragement at it's best!
Apr 12, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Think everyone should read this book. It's full of GREAT encouragement to get through life.
Aug 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Ideas that make us laugh sometimes make the most sense...
Anna Whiteman
REad it a long time ago. Interesting. She lost one son to war, another to a car accident and stressed over a son who was gay.
Jun 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: excellent-read
Jennifer Pittman
Mar 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Loved this. So funny and encouraging.
Linda Watkins
Jun 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Barbara Johnson gives hope to those who fill hopeless! Highly recommend this book if you are going through hard times of any sort!
Jun 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: excellent-read
Catherine Lima
Jun 17, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Love this book. Very inspiring and straight to the point. Thank you for your testimony and for your advice. God bless Barbara and her family always.
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Librarian note: There are other authors with the same name

Barbara Johnson (1927-2007) died July 2nd, 2007 of cancer (Central Nervous System Lymphoma) after a valiant 6 year fight against the disease. During her illness, she added four more books to her long list of published works, including one that takes humorous pokes at her life with cancer. Affectionately called the “Geranium Lady,” a title t
“ kills time between disasters.” 7 likes
“We can choose to gather to our hearts the thorns of disappointment, failure, loneliness, and dismay due to our present situation, or we can gather the flowers of God’s grace, unbounding love, abiding presence, and unmatched joy.” 1 likes
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