Thursday, July 24, 2014

Live in Gratitude

Last week, I was tagged by dear friend Tulika on Facebook to participate in a wonderful challenge - The Positive Challenge, where, "For 5 days, you post 3 positive things that happened to you or you are grateful for that day. At the end of each day, tag/nominate 3 people to take part in the challenge"

Living and practicing Gratitude for a while now, I was thrilled to take this up and would like to share here my Gratitude List:



Day1
1. Having finished the weekly washing and cleaning in the morning, spent a peaceful and lazy Saturday.
2. Thank you Mom for the chit-chat, awesome coffee and taking me to buy those indoor plants that I've been wanting for so long!


















3. A walk with M in our new colony, like old times! <3

Day2
1. Sunday lazy breakfast along with movie 'Speed' followed by second cup of tea! Bliss! And the movie 'Speed' I can watch any no of times! :)
2. A relaxing hair spa! :)
3. Three hours of Dance. Gave it all my sweat! Next Sunday is our show!!
Just have to add one more!
4. Dinner with in laws. And Mango for desert! Not just any kinds....chk out this huge aam from Malda!













Day3
1. Happy to be working on few future collaborations for The Dance Bible. Fingers crossed!
2. Won an awesome giveaway hosted by The Red Handed Blog :)
3. Had a healthy Monday filled with fruits n veggies after lots of junk on the weekend! ;)
And a bonus 4th!
4. Wrote a short fiction piece after a looooong gap. Have submitted to a friend and waiting for it to get published! :)

Day4
1. Redecorated my drawing room corner. All thanks to beautiful house warming gifts from my Aunts!













2. My short story 'Caged' got published in Social Potpourri! Thanks Sulekha and Kriti :)
3. Thankful for a crazy family! Love u loads! We laughed till we cried!! Oooo what a day!













Day5
1. Love you M for the amazing, kind, caring, understanding partner that you are. Not a day goes without a little prayer and thank u for you!

















2. My sister who is on her way to becoming a professor. Prof. pyarelal I call her sweetly. Pavni love you loads!
3. For this wonderful life where each morning offers me a fresh start to make life beaYOUtiful :)

For friends n family who will stand with you no matter what!

And, special guest tonight at home, one of M's besties, who filled our mid week evening with laughter. Thank you Pankaj for sharing your fun filled anecdotes!

When I started counting my blessings,
my whole life turned around.
Willie Nelson

I would love to hear what your gratitude list includes. Spread goodness and cheer and link your gratitude list here.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Caged

"Did I switch off the gas?" "Did I forget to lock the doors?" A cold wave slaps my face; just as your hands, coarse and hard, so often...so strongly came on my cheek; bringing me to reality. I push these mundane thoughts out of my head and bow my head respectfully in your remembrance.

Dr. Iqbal Yazdani
1956 - 1998
Father, Husband, Son
"The heart of man is restless until it finds its rest in You"

I slowly pluck out the weeds grown alongside the grill fencing your grave, and then carefully place the fresh flowers by your side, as I do every year. "How does it feel to be caged?" "Are you at rest?"


To read rest of the fiction, go to Social Potpourri

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Inspired by Green

Art inspires and so does Nature. Combine the two and you have beauty all around. Harpreet Ahluwalia founder of Earthly Creations, lives, breathes and spreads such beauty. I happened to meet the charming lady while on search for few indoor plants for my home. My mom knew just the place! A sleepy Saturday afternoon soon turned into a creative haven as we entered Harpreet's lovely abode. Hundreds of plants along with garden accessories, mostly animal-shaped planters greeted us and like a child, with eyes wide open in amazement and admiration, I lapped it all up.







BeaYOUtiful isn't it?

The person behind this artistic delight was even more lovely than her creations. Ever-smiling, humble, friendly and polite, Harpreet stood with us the entire time, helping us choose our planters. This warm engagement, inspite of her having a terrible backache which she was nursing just before we had come in. 

For a flower show once, she got a roadside potter to custom design few pots for her and that was when an idea struck her. Every passionate gardener tended their plants with care making them look beautiful, but she felt the need for something more. Hence a decade back, Earthly Creations was born. Initially she took her ideas to local potters, but the need for good mud and clay led her to navigate many villages far and wide. Today she has about 40 potters, across 5 states, who understand and speak her language of creativity. As we spoke, she recalled how her husband used to get mad when she unaware of her surroundings sat along with potters by the roadside making unique terracottas.

"Love an Animal, Gift a Plant", that's what her card reads. Because animal and bird garden accessories are her specialty. I fell in love with many unique design; Hippopotamuses, Frogs, Bunnies and more, but what I finally purchased was this - 



Like it? :)

Today I was inspired, not only by her green aesthetics but also by her rosy personality.
More power to her and many like her who dare to follow their passions and make enterprises out of their hobbies!

Friday, July 11, 2014

The Curse

The room had been turned into a slaughterhouse: pages, torn and crumpled, lay everywhere and amongst them her blood shot eyes were concentrating devilishly on the new project.

It is a condition, I had said to her earlier in the day, "But you need to understand that you don't always have to fight it; it is quite natural, this thing happening to you"

"It's okay to take a break, just go out and smell the roses sometimes", I had said in all earnestness, only to be met with her cold stare.

"Honey?" I held up the wine and chocolates wishing she'd take a breather and let normalcy set in again, but in vain.

"Okay-Okay, I agree I have been diseased with the dreaded writer's block, but there's nothing a glass of wine can't wash away, right?", she said exasperatedly as she opened the bottle and once again disappeared into her fantasy world.

*************************

While the above is a fictional piece, there is no denying that most of us have a lull period between our blogging/writing. I, unlike the protagonist of the story, don't fight the blogger's block, rather I acknowledge its presence and work around it.

Keep the creative juices flowing - I dance, read, cook, watch movies, listen to songs and stay in the creative zone. Anything can be a trigger and before you know it you are writing again. 

Even strangers can inspire - I love to study the faces of Passersby when traveling. And sometimes a smile can strike up a conversation between two strangers. Before you know it, you'll be writing about the experience or creating a fictional character inspired from that someone you met.

Get wordy - I have an average vocabulary but whenever I come across a new and enticing word, or a familiar word used in a unique and interesting manner, I make it a point to note it down. I browse this list every once in a while to nudge the writer in me and it has worked out fabulously.

Listen to the nature - I love to watch the sky, clouds moving slowly...taking shapes, leaves changing colors, birds singing...flapping their wings...soaring high in the sky, squirrels acting quirky, flowers blooming - they all speak to you. You just have to listen to get the magic going.

Sleep - Although I admit sleep doesn't come easily to me, I toss and turn for hours before entering my dream world. But a good night's sleep can help you start afresh!

So there, my five ways to tackle the writer's block/ blogger's block. What do you think?