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Nugget # 103 Life is an Acappella!

acapellaHi friends,

Hope you are doing fine. This week I’d like to share a nugget that many of us could relate to. Firstly let’s define what an acapella really is: Acapella according to Internet slang refers to “vocal music without instruments.” The first time I heard this kind of music I was flabbergasted. Since then I have been a big fan of all kinds of acapella music.

Click here to hear the first acapella song I heard. It’s made from an old Hindi film song. The song was brilliantly remade using sounds made by voice, mouth and body only. Can you imagine, there are no musical instruments used in making it! Amazing right? 🙂

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This week I’d like to share how much we too are like Acapella singers in our life as we do the many roles handed over to us- a daughter/son, a sister/bro, a spouse, a parent either by choice or chance, a homemaker / a career person, a friend, a writer, teacher, story teller, a cook, a cleaner, a singer, a believer… the list goes on endlessly…. And we can keep adding or subtracting from it. Just like how in acapella, we mainly sing vocals but simultaneously we also imitate the other instruments or sounds to give it the effect of hearing the original track , in life too we may be called to play several other roles in addition to our main role. Just like the acapella singers focus one by one on each sound and then synchronize it with the other sounds similarly we need to give our 100% dedication to each role assigned to us and do it with a spirit of excellence. Later on, we will be able to manage our time and prioritize the things according to their urgency. Sometimes we will have to postpone or even drop some activities from our list in order to live a balanced & stress-free life. Many times we may have to even sacrifice certain privileges just in order to see a smile on another’s face. At these times it may be tempting to ignore ourselves or others, the optimal method is to be able to know when and where to draw the line. Prayer & planning as well as delegation & brain storming with friends & family helps us to do this. Once we have drawn a blueprint, it is essential as far as possible to stick to it. However we need to be flexible enough to incorporate changes as we move along.

downloadThe final result will be the acapella where our different roles are played out successfully & now we can hear the lovely song played in our own unique version. Surely, there will be mixed responses and reactions to the music of our life but as long as we have tried our best and even enjoy or like what we have done, we can lean back and nod our heads to the trendy beat of the song we have always loved!

Click here to hear Pentatonix singing Mary, Did You Know?

guitar-smiley-emoticonNugget of Life: “Music speaks what cannot be expressed, soothes the mind and gives it rest. Heals the heart and makes it whole, flows from Heaven to the soul!”

Have an awesome week!

 

Cheers,

Sparky laurie

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Posted by on September 25, 2016 in LIfe, Uncategorized

 

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Nugget # 98 Life lesson from a bunch of keys!

7233129-two-keys-for-homeHi friends,

This week I’d like to share a nugget that came to me a few days ago as I was locking our front door. After fiddling for some time with the key turning it over and over again in the lock, I said, “I wonder why this key just won’t turn.” That’s when my hubby called out to me, “are you sure you have the right key in?” That made me quickly check and I realized that I had the wrong key in. I then inserted the other similar key in the bunch. This time all it took was just one turn and voila! … Effortlessly the deed was done…door locked, we were ready to go!

That’s when this nugget dawned on me. Though the two keys in the bunch I used looked almost identical, they were not the same. Each was made for a different lock and only when the right key was put in, would it work.

Let me apply this key principle to different aspects of our everyday life:

1)Finding our Life purpose: We are all like the keys; having a special & specific purpose to accomplish. Only when we are rightly placed will we flourish or else we will always be dissatisfied or at the most we will try to put in our bare minimum. However, when we find out what we really enjoy and try our hand at that, no matter how small or insignificant it may start out, we will work with a spirit of excellence and that will lead to success.

HARD WORK + PASSION =SUCCESS. 

I’m reminded of the quote by Confucius: “Choose a job you love and you will never have to work a day in your life.” Meaning that when we try something we love, we would enjoy it so much, we wouldn’t even call it work!

2) Relationships: All of us know people who we just meet and instantly connect without much effort. They usually with time, become our closest friends, maybe even our spouses. Such people are God-sent, one in a million! These are the ones the very thought of whom brings a smile to our face. The ones we click perfectly with just like the right key in the right lock!

3)Timing: Another area we could apply the key principle is in timing.When things don’t happen at the time when we want it to and we are forced to wait, we get impatient/ frustrated. We may even try hard to make things happen in our strength just as I had been struggling trying to fit the wrong key in the lock. Instead of messing things up, we need to learn to trust in Gods perfect timing. Eccl 3:1, 11-12“….there’s a time for everything and a season for every activity under heaven….God has made everything beautiful for its own time. …. So I concluded that there’s nothing better for Gods people than to be happy and enjoy themselves for as long as they can.”-Bible

Thus we see that just as the right key in the right lock can open and shut things, similarly when we are in the right place,with the right people at the right time, miracles happen! Life becomes beautiful! 🙂

little_blue_fishy_swimming_lg_nwmNugget of Life: “Everybody is a genius, but if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”- Albert Einstein.

 Have a awesome week!

Cheers,

Sparky laurie

 

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Nugget# 97 Life lessons from Baby N!

while-we-try-to-teach-our-children-all-about-life-our-children-teach-us-what-life-is-all-about9Hi friends,

As I was pondering on what to write this week, my one year old said forcefully “Sha”…I had heard baby N  say that word before and was wondering from where he had learnt it. I said “No Shaa baby… don’t say Shaa..”  But he continued to repeat it over and over again. There were many words that I had been repeating and reciting to him and he was learning; but here was this expression …that he had effortlessly picked up….and was repeating.

Later that afternoon as I was clearing up after lunch, I noticed baby quickly crawl into the kitchen and pick up something from the kitchen floor and put it into his mouth… “Sha”… escaped my lips as I ran to take that particle from baby’s mouth and quickly dispose it off. That’s when I realized to my utter amazement the source from where baby N had picked up his new fav phrase! shocked-smiley-emoticon

That set me thinking…

1)How often when we act mindlessly or sometimes due to preoccupation with many things, we may  respond in a way that may not even be aware of.

2)People who look up to us often catch the things we least expect them to and so we have to make a deliberate effort to be intentional (as much as possible) with our words as they do influence others.

To continue the story,  I couldn’t help laughing out aloud as I watched my lil one’s mischievous grin & sparkling  eyes as he was enjoy repeating “Sha” every time I tried to make him stop.

Let me apply this nugget to our life. Whenever we find imbalance in any area of our life, we usually think of change. To facilitate this,(full of good intentions) we make resolutions as we decide to strengthen our will to say “NO” to the addiction (be it food, TV, sports, work, people, shopping, drugs etc) Ironically, though we may succeed initially, it is only a matter of time that we will soon get tired of resistance & throw in the towel.

By doing this, we repeat the mistake that I made when correcting my baby. While correcting him, I had tried to make him stop by focusing fully ONLY on what needed to be changed. Unknowingly I had drawn both of our attention to that which we actually needed to forget. Was it any surprise that he remembered that word perfectly? The right way to correct baby was to teach him another word or to distract him or to entertain him with something more interesting that would make him forget what he was repeating. The same thing applies to us. Sharing  below some practical tips to help us overcome old habits /learn new ones.animated-smileys-thinking-20

Sparky Laurie’s 10 Rs to either learn /unlearn something: 

  1. Reason – Prepare a Declaration of Freedom for ourselves by listing the reasons why we choose to break free from that habit or learn a new way of life.
  2. Remind – Keep a print out of the Declaration (mentioned above) in front of us to empower us as we realize that we have chosen to break the power of the bad habit over us and be its slave no more/ Or work intentionally towards the goals we plan to achieve.
  3. Replenish – When we are tempted (to give in or give up),we could think of an appealing alternative action that we could engage in rather than use that time and energy in combat.
  4. Relate –  Seek a support system, for instance call up a favorite friend/parent/ relative  and converse about anything else except our struggle. No matter how many times it tries to creep into the conversation, switch gears. Give it neither our attention nor our time.
  5. Repeat- Say aloud, “I am made for better things than this. I will live my life to its fullest.”
  6. Review – Make a bucket list of the impossible things we would like to try in our life time. Even updating it when we hit our lowest point would uplift us and bring us back on track.
  7. Relax-Take a break, go out for a walk, breathe slowly. Get some sunshine. Feel the breeze. Smell the flowers. Thank God for life.
  8. Refresh –Do something for brightening up someone else’s day. Give someone a lift, smile at a passerby.
  9. Rejoice- Watch a Madea movie and laugh out loud… its wisdom and humor all in one!
  10. Recreate –Everyone is made in the image of God and He has deposited a part of Him in every one of us. Our gift is that which we could naturally do, that which brings us joy, that which excites & invigorates us. “That which honors God, blesses others and delights your heart, that is your calling, that’s your gift!” Discover and cherish your gift.

Coming back , I distracted baby N to see and enjoy a few other things and finally he stopped what he was initially saying. And just when I thought I had nailed it , ….guess what?  …..Baby N says out aloud…. “Sha…” LOL…. 🙂 ….well, I guess that’s going to take a little more time!

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The same may be the case with many of us as we try to overcome or learn new things. Always remember that No matter how many times we fail, each time we emerge stronger if we determine to learn and persist.

baby-pooh-icon-emoticon-032Nugget of Life : “The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new.”- Socrates

Have a fun filled week,

Cheers,

Sparky laurie

 

 

 

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Nugget# 96 Life lesson from SUE THOMAS: F.B.Eye!

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Sue(Deanne) with Levi (Jesse)…Notice his ID!! 🙂

Hi Friends,

Firstly, let me apologize for not being around for a while. Hope you’ve been doing great. At my end, I’ve been going through some fine learning experiences here in the University of Life. Nobody really prefers to enroll at the School of Life’s Hard Knocks and this post is especially dedicated to all those of us who have graduated from there! 🙂

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The real Sue Thomas F.B.I. with her hearing dog Grace!

I’ve recently been enjoying watching the famous Sue ThomasF.B.Eye,a critically acclaimed groundbreaking TV series inspired by the true story of Sue Thomas,who although profoundly deaf from the age of 18 months, overcame significant obstacles to work surveillance for the F.B.I. Incidentally, Deanne Bray, who plays the role of Sue is herself a severely deaf actress who was also strongly encouraged by her parents to speak and read lips.

As portrayed in the series, Sue Thomas is about to start her first real job – which happens to be with the F.B.I. Though initially underestimated, very soon she is recognized for her intelligence and unique lip reading skills and she lives her hard earned dream when she along with her adorable hearing dog Levi join the bureau’s elite surveillance team.

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The awesome team from (Left-Right)  Dimitri,Tara,Bobby,Lucy,Myles,Levi,Sue & Jack

Joining Sue, Levi and Jack on the team are Bobby Manning, a charismatic agent who likes to bend the rules; Dimitrius Gans, the senior member of the surveillance unit; Lucy Dotson, the team’s right hand support person and Sue’s best friend & roommate ; Myles Leland III, the Boston born, Harvard educated, self-proclaimed ‘Einstein with a gun;’ and Tara Williams, the quirky but brilliant go-to tech expert.

This is a show about courage & perseverance, it not only keeps us on the edge of our seat, but also makes us laugh & cry. Though there are many lessons that one could learn from this delightful series (a real breath of fresh air in the highly contaminated & toxic atmosphere of TV entertainment today), the one that I would like to share is IDENTITY.

When we split up the word Identity, we come up with ‘I’  & ‘dent.’ The pronoun ‘I’ refers to the real us without any apology, compromise or mask ; it refers to the basic core of who we really are,our strengths and weaknesses just as they are.

The other part dent refers to 1) a notch or hollow made by a blow or pressure. 2) An impression or effect made usually against resistance.

Like I said in the beginning, we are all dented by life. To succeed, we need to grab life by the horns anyway with absolutely no excuses and seek to live out our dreams boldly and courageously no matter what the odds or obstacles. In the story, Sue cannot hear and even speaks with a lisp. But she uses what she has which is her unique lip reading skills that she has worked on since her childhood. Her mother has been her guiding force always reminding her that in spite of her disability, she could be everything she wanted to as long as she worked twice as hard. She skates, sings and plays the piano as well. If she was like any other person, I doubt she would have inspired us as much. It is her ‘Dent’ that makes her so beautiful and compassionate. She knows what it is to be unwanted, to be the odd one out. And that is what causes her to select Levi in spite of the abuse that he had been through. She in a way empowers him and he ends up saving her life!

It is when we fully accept the ‘I’ in Identity, which includes the good, bad and the ugly (dents & all)…. both in ourselves as well as in others , That is the divine moment when we have ceased to simply exist and truly live our life to its fullest!animated-flower-image-0091 Click for the  WHO I AM song with favorite sneak peeks from the Sue Thomas: F.B.Eye …Enjoy!

animated-dance-smiley-image-0044Nugget of Life : “When you know yourself, you are empowered. When you accept yourself, you are invincible.”-Tina Lifford

Have an awesome week,

Cheers,

Sparky laurie

 

 

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Nugget # 93 Life lesson from an Electric Insect Killer Bat!

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Hi friends,

It’s been a while now…., hope all of you are doing well. This morning as I was peacefully sitting and enjoying some music with the windows open for fresh air circulation, I watched a fly enter the room. Within moments my serenity was gone as I was now totally distracted by the insect flying all around me. Agitated, I immediately reached out for my Electric Insect Killer Bat and started to sway it around. It was then that I realized that as I had failed to plug it in, there was not enough electric charge and hence it was useless. I immediately plugged the bat into a power source and waited for it to recharge, that is when this nugget hit me.

All of us are just like that electric fly swatter with immense potential and abilities. We are designed with exactly what we need in ourselves to achieve our God given purpose in life, but there is a catch…..just like that electric fly swatter was ineffective because it hadn’t been plugged into the power source and hence there was no charge in it, similarly no matter how great the potential within us, we will be unable to do anything unless we are charged into our power source- the Lord God Almighty. Trying in our own strength to make things happen is just as frustrating as swaying around the uncharged fly swatter. No matter how long or how hard we try, we will not be able to achieve success; instead we may get sore arms and be filled with disillusionment and self doubt.

The time spent in recharging the electric fly swatter was not a waste, as within a matter of 15 minutes, the bat was fully charged and fit to be used. I aimed and swayed it ….and that was the end of the pest! How similar is our case, as we draw power from God Almighty by spending time in prayer and the Word of God, we become dynamite and are filled with strength from above to fulfill our calling here on earth with an ease and confidence, how can we not succeed then?

funny-fly-swatter-smiley-emoticonNugget of Life: “Spending time in God’s presence is like the process of making tea. The longer the tea bag rests in the boiling hot water, the stronger the tea becomes.”- Author unknown

Have a great week!

Cheers,

Sparky Laurie

 
 

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Nugget # 92 Life lesson from a Pair of Jeans!

6559417-pair-of-jeans-isolated-on-the-white-backgroundHi friends,

First things first…Wishing you all a wonderfully happy New Year! This week I’d like to share a random thought that came to mind as I was ironing a pair of jeans. I just started wondering….when, where and how did jeans ever originate? With a little help from Google, I got the story which inspires me to write today’s nugget.

In 1853, the California gold rush was in full swing, and everyday items were in short supply. Levi Strauss, a 24-year-old German immigrant, left New York for San Francisco with a small supply of dry goods with the intention of opening a branch of his brother’s New York dry goods business. Shortly after his arrival, a prospector wanted to know what Mr. Levi Strauss was selling. When Strauss told him he had rough canvas to use for tents and wagon covers, the prospector said, “You should have brought pants!,” saying he couldn’t find a pair of pants strong enough to last. Levi Strauss had the canvas made into waist overalls. Miners liked the pants, but complained that they tended to chafe. Levi Strauss substituted a twilled cotton cloth from France called “serge de Nimes.” The fabric later became known as denim and the pants were nicknamed blue jeans after the sailors from Genoa in Italy who first wore them.

One of Levi’s customers was a Reno Nevada- based Latvian tailor by the name of Jacob Davis. He regularly purchased bolts of cloth from the wholesale house of Levi Strauss & Co. Among Jacob’s customers was a difficult man who kept ripping the pockets of the pants that Jacob made for him. Jacob tried to think of a way to strengthen the man’s trousers, and one day hit upon the idea of putting metal rivets at the points of strain. These riveted pants were an instant hit with Jacob’s customers and he along with Levi Strauss co patented the process of putting rivets in pants for strength. On May 20, 1873, they received  US patent no.139,121. That day is now considered to be the official “birthday” of blue jeans.

We can see that what started out as “unwanted” canvas was transformed little by little into “much in demand” pants that is today a staple of everybody’s wardrobe and even a key element in seasonal trends and fashion around the world.

The same thing is applicable to our lives. Very few of us get things on golden platters. For the majority of us, as we surge ahead and face obstacles in life, it is going to be our ability to see the hidden opportunity instead of the glaring impossibility that will actually determine our success. In other words, the trick is not to avoid all mistakes but to see how we can make our mistakes work for us.

lightbulb_idea-1364Nugget of Life : Bertolt Brecht :”Intelligence is not to make no mistakes But quicky to see how to make them good.”

Have an awesome week!

Cheers,

Sparky Laurie

 
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Posted by on January 13, 2014 in NUGGETS OF LIFE, Uncategorized

 

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Nugget # 89 Life lesson from a Snake Story!

Kid riding snakeHi friends,

This week I’d like to share a nugget from a story of a snake I came across through email.

Once upon a time there was a snake who was vicious, snarling, and dangerous. He terrified the villagers, bit the children and scared everyone. But the truth was that the snake sometimes felt lonely and craved companionship.

One day, a wise man wandered into the village. He clearly saw the chaos the snake’s actions had brought. He said to the snake, “ Listen up, snake. You’re not only making the people here unhappy, but you yourself are clearly miserable, so practice some kindness and gentleness to improve the lot of everyone here, including you.” And so the wise man went on his way.

Years later, the wise one happened to pass through that same village again. To his surprise, he saw an inert, passive plaything being kicked about by the children. He realized that this was, in fact, none other than the formally aggressive serpent he’d had words with years before. The snake managed to free himself from his tormentors and slide up to the man.

“Your advice was disastrous!” he hissed faintly. “Practicing gentleness has brought me complete misery! Now I’m used as a toy, laughed at, and taken for granted. I was better off before!”

The old man replied, “You took my advice too literally and without reflection. I said that you shouldn’t bite… but I didn’t say you should never hiss!”

In our life too, in order to be happy and fulfilled, we may have to maintain a balance between being too aggressive and being a door mat. And the right word for that is to be Assertive! It helps to remember that ‘there is strength in our diferences and there is comfort where we overlap!’

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Nugget of Life: “You can be the ripest, juiciest peach in the world, and there’s still going to be somebody who hates peaches.”- Dita Von Teese.  So, go ahead and  just be you! 🙂

Have a wonderful week!

Cheers,

Sparky Laurie

 
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Posted by on October 24, 2013 in NUGGETS OF LIFE, Uncategorized

 

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