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30 Days of Thankfulness Day 14

I often post a list of all the things for which I’m thankful on Thanksgiving. But, in an effort to get back into the habit of daily blogging, I’ve decided to do a post a day for the month of November.

14. My Siblings

siblings2

Out of four children, I’m the second oldest (and at 5’11” the SHORTEST!) My brother, Jim, is 16 months older than me, my brother, Ty, is 3.5 years younger, and my sister, Misty, is 5 years younger.

Our parents encouraged us to follow our dreams, to create, to imagine. We lived in a household where movies were adored and discussed and dissected. A household where books were consumed with equal passion.

My older brother has a degree in cinematography, and is an accomplished hip hop DJ with a weekly radio program. He lives in Sydney, Australia, blogs with amazing beauty and insight, and freelances as a writer on the music scene.

My younger brother has an art degree and is an amazing cartoonist. He does everything from a series of super heroes that he dreamed up as a child to a comic strip that battles culture woes and Christian worldviews. Some of my favorite work of his are his collaborative drawings with his 6-year-old daughter. I’ve never really seen anyone so patient and so loving with kids, and remember him drawing with Kaylee when she was that age.

My sister has a degree in journalism and English. She’s the managing editor of an award-winning newspaper and teaches college classes part time. She does this while juggling married life and three very active children. Her columns are so brilliant, and her writing draws readers in and makes them feel like she’s talking directly to them.

When we get together, it’s as if we were never apart. Conversations come easy and we are loud and rambunctious, talking over each other to talk about the last movie seen or share a recent experience. It’s comfortable and our kind of normal and full of love and mutual respect.

I’m so thankful for my siblings and look forward to seeing them whenever I can.
Hallee Bridgeman Precious Signature


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30 Days of Thankfulness Day 13

I often post a list of all the things for which I’m thankful on Thanksgiving. But, in an effort to get back into the habit of daily blogging, I’ve decided to do a post a day for the month of November.

13. My Parents

mom and dad

My parents were high school sweethearts. If you’d have asked my mom, when she was 17, what she wanted to be when she grew up, her answer was, “Bill’s wife.” Their high school year books are filled with references to their relationship. “Have a good summer! Good luck with you and Bill!” They’ve been married 45 years, have four children, and seven grandchildren. Somehow, they managed to create a functional, Godly home amongst the cultural revolution of the 70’s and 80’s.

As each one of us entered into adulthood and left home, we each, one at a time, complained to mom that what we’d had growing up wasn’t “normal” like we thought it was. The love, support, happiness, shared interests – we had something special and we knew it when we were exposed to the outside world.

The coolest thing about my parents is — they have our backs. The four of us, my siblings and I, know that there is no condemnation, no malice, no agendas in our parents’ home. There is only love, encouragement, and prayer. And God is the center of it all.

My parents encouraged us to follow dreams, be creative, be honest, be leaders. We know dad will be available with sage advice and mom with loving support. If I needed them, I would have but to call. And, I think knowing that gave me a safety net of sorts and in the end gave me courage to step out and step forward and accomplish.

I know my parents are a blessing and I am so thankful they are mine.

 
Hallee Bridgeman Precious Signature


I’m so grateful for your visit, today.
You would bless me if you added me to your Subscribe via any Reader feed reader or subscribed Subscribe via Email via email.
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30 Days of Thankfulness: Day 7

I often post a list of all the things for which I’m thankful on Thanksgiving. But, in an effort to get back into the habit of daily blogging, I’ve decided to do a post a day for the month of November

7. The Gift of Storytelling

typewriter

1 Peter 4:10 tells us that God, through His grace, has given each of us gifts, and wants us to use those gifts to minister to one another. I am so grateful that He has given me the gift of storytelling.

Whether it’s a full length novel of Christian romantic suspense or a blog post about parenting a special needs child, I am able to entertain, engage, or enlighten. God determined that my ministry would be the written word, and for years now, I have I given of it freely, using it to minister to the world. My words reach thousands of people a week, and I do it all with a mind for ministry. Sometimes I’m convicted to write blog posts like Brokenness that are ripped from my chest, and the entire time I’m almost begging the Holy Spirit to have me write something else, something less open, something less raw. And sometimes I’m able to do something fun, like making a watermelon shark for my sons’ birthday party. Every word put on the blog is done with a heart to serve others with my words. I have never made money off of Hallee the Homemaker, and I never intend to.

Beyond blogging, I give of my fiction work, too. To date, I’ve given away over 150,000 copies of Greater Than Rubies, and use that book as a platform to share a strong evangelical message.

It’s a wonderful feeling, to know that you’re doing what God would intend for you to do. Whenever I hear from a reader about how something specific encouraged them, touched them, convicted them — be it a blog post, cookbook, or fictional story — I am uplifted in ways I cannot explain with mere words.
Hallee Bridgeman Precious Signature


I’m so grateful for your visit, today.
You would bless me if you added me to your Subscribe via any Reader feed reader or subscribed Subscribe via Email via email.
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30 Days of Thankfulness Day 6

I often post a list of all the things for which I’m thankful on Thanksgiving. But, in an effort to get back into the habit of daily blogging, I’ve decided to do a post a day for the month of November.

6. Ten Years Smoke Free

cigarette

It has been ten years this month that I have been smoke free. I started smoking cigarettes when I was a teenager. On my 18th birthday, my mom jokingly bought me a carton of cigarettes and told me I could come out of the closet.

I LOVED smoking. I enjoyed the oral fixation, I enjoyed the feel — nothing was better to me than to sit down with a cup of coffee and have that first cigarette of the day.

Gregg and I both smoked when we met and got married. He was a teenager in Kentucky, where it seems like everyone smokes, and spent many a summer picking tobacco on his family’s tobacco farm. Smoking was just a part of us, and neither of us had much to think about it. Until one day Gregg jumped out of an airplane and landed in a fire ant bed. Apparently, he is allergic to fire ant bites, and started to go into anaphylactic shock. A rush to the emergency room, medication, and a chest x-ray revealed — a spot on his lungs.

Now, Gregg’s mother (also a smoker) died of breast cancer when he was a young boy. And suddenly, a shadow on an x-ray made mortality a very real concept to this veteran of two wars and bearer of many military badges, medals, and commendations.

The shadow, or spot, turned out to be nothing. But, it did cause a catalyst in our lives.

A week later, on the morning I had my tonsils removed, we smoked our last cigarettes.

Wow, quitting was hard.

Quitting was HARD.

You want to know why I don’t smoke anymore? Because quitting was HARD.

I know for a fact that I would not have ever quit if what we perceived to be my husband’s life wasn’t at stake. Honestly, if it were just for me, I would have happily continued smoking until the end of my earthly life. But, to help him, I quit, and that was the only way I was able to derive the strength to hold fast.

It has been ten years and I still have moments when I really want a cigarette. Now, in the last probably year, those moments have been a little bit less often. But, that’s just been in the last year. For nearly a decade, I wanted a cigarette all the time. Nothing appealed to me about smoking anymore. I know all of the science, I know all of the risks, I know all of the health studies, I think smoking is unattractive and really a turn-off for me, I can’t stand the smell, and you won’t find a more determined advocate about a healthy lifestyle and healthy eating — none of that had to do with the way my brain spent many times a day trying to convince itself that I could smoke again.

I’ll never go back. And I’m thankful I had the strength to quit. I don’t know how I did it, but I’m glad I did.
Hallee Bridgeman Precious Signature


I’m so grateful for your visit, today.
You would bless me if you added me to your Subscribe via any Reader feed reader or subscribed Subscribe via Email via email.
You can also become a fan on Become a Facebook Fan Facebook or follow me on Follow me on Twitter Twitter. I would love to see more of you!


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30 Days of Thankfulness Day 5

I often post a list of all the things for which I’m thankful on Thanksgiving. But, in an effort to get back into the habit of daily blogging, I’ve decided to do a post a day for the month of November.

5. Johnathan (Jeb)

jeb

The next three posts are my three children. I am not posting them in any order other than oldest first.

At 5, Jeb is our absolute joy. I don’t say that to take anything away from our other children, but Jeb is just…joy. He is highly emotional and has a happy nature, which means he is almost always just bubbling over with happiness. A friend at church says often that she wishes she could capture his laugh and just have it throughout her day.

He is ALL boy — superheroes, guns, swords, cars, dirt, dogs — he is everything good that little boys are made of. He prefers running to walking, and prefers running with a sword over all.

He already has a heart for God. He goes around the house signing worship songs, he is the first to volunteer to pray, he is a master at remembering Bible verses, and he LOVES going to church. Topics of faith are extremely interesting to him, and he’ll ask questions until you don’t know the answers anymore.

All he desires is to please – and to be praised. I’ve never seen a child so encouraged by words of affirmation like Jeb. He is also extremely social and has several “best friends” already. He reads on about a 2nd grade level, and can do a lot of simple math in his head – which is a real challenge for his Kindergarten teacher. His recall ability is fascinating.

I am forever fascinated with this youngest child of mine. I know God has amazing things planned for his future, and I pray every day that he stays open to the voice of the Holy Spirit in his life.
Hallee Bridgeman Precious Signature


I’m so grateful for your visit, today.
You would bless me if you added me to your Subscribe via any Reader feed reader or subscribed Subscribe via Email via email.
You can also become a fan on Become a Facebook Fan Facebook or follow me on Follow me on Twitter Twitter. I would love to see more of you!


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30 Days of Thankfulness Day 4

I often post a list of all the things for which I’m thankful on Thanksgiving. But, in an effort to get back into the habit of daily blogging, I’ve decided to do a post a day for the month of November.

4. Scott

scott meatballs

The next three posts are my three children. I am not posting them in any order other than oldest first.

At 7, Scott is our middle child. He is also our miracle.

Born at 30 weeks, weighing in at 3 lbs. 5 oz., Scott is a testimony of God’s amazing grace, and the power of prayer. There should be a dozen things wrong with him, from poor eyesight to breathing issues. As it is, he is perfectly and wonderfully healthy as any 7-year-old boy out there.

If you’ve followed our journey with Scott, you’ll know that he was diagnosed with a condition that falls under the autism umbrella known as PDD (NOS). But the changes in his coping skills and overall happiness with life in just the last year since he’s started working with an occupational therapist have been remarkable.

He is SO smart, with a memory that would almost scare you. He talks about things that happened when he was 1-years-old – things he couldn’t possibly know or remember. He is like his father in that when he is interested in something, he learns as much as he can about it, and can’t get enough information about it. He LOVES babies and animals, and has the most generous heart you’ve ever seen. If I sit down, he’s in my lap, and if I get upset at some boy mischief, he almost frantically tries to make me happy again.

No parent of a child with special needs will say she’s thankful to have a child burdened with those types of struggles through life. But, I will say that I am incredibly honored to be chosen by God to parent this remarkable boy, and I cannot wait to see what his future holds for him.

 

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