June 24th, 2024

Serving up Chicken Soup for the Soul

By Peggy Revell on July 16, 2018.

Former Hatter Ellie Braun-Haley has multiple stories lined up to be published in Chicken Soup for the Soul anthologies this year. She hopes her stories about miracles and generosity inspire people to pass along acts of kindness. --SUBMITTED PHOTO


Creating chain reactions of kindness — it’s what a former Hatter hopes for, as her uplifting stories continue to find a home within the Chicken Soup for the Soul series.

“I love things that uplift,” said Ellie Braun-Haley. “Because you know what happens when people read a story that uplifts them? Especially a story … about somebody elsewhere doing something good for somebody else? They wish they had done it.

“And then people start looking for opportunities to do that. Goodness begets goodness.”

Seven of Braun-Haley’s stories will be appearing in various Chicken Soup for the Soul books this year, continuing a tradition that started in 2001 when the publisher discovered one of her stories online, and contacted her for permission to print it in a collection.

“It’s been really wonderful for me. It’s an excitement that never dies, from one story to the next,” said Braun-Haley, who said that alongside stories of kindness, she also loves stories about miracles.

Hatters may best known Braun-Haley as the former hostess of the television show “Swing Into Fitness,” for teaching creative movement to kindergartners throughout the city, developing a dance program for the city, and a dance and movement program for teens and adults with disabilities while teaching at Medicine Hat College.

“There’s so many ways I got so many starts in Medicine Hat,” said Braun-Haley, such as the encouragement to write two children’s books.

While she now lives in Calgary, Medicine Hat serves as an inspiration for some stories that have made their way into Chicken Soup

The newly released “Chicken Soup for the Soul The Empowered Woman” features her story about being on a stretch of highway between Calgary and Medicine Hat, and the decision to try to stop a drunk driver.

Royalties from this book will go towards the non-profit organization, “Dress for Success” that helps women in the job market.

One of her two stories set to be published this August in “Chicken Soup for the Soul, The Power of Yes” is called “Trick Riding 101” and took place when Braun-Haley hosted the exercise television show and ended up at the Stampede Grounds learning how to trick ride.

One story published earlier this year in “Chicken Soup for the Soul Miracles And More” takes place in her hometown of Taber.

Braun-Haley has also just had a story accepted to a Chicken Soup anthology set to be published this October with a focus on Canadians and will be a fundraiser for United Way Centraide Canada.

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