Home Gratitude Soul Cuddle Fest #Gratitude

Soul Cuddle Fest #Gratitude

by Vidya Sury September 29, 2016 33 comments
Gratitude Circle Vidya Sury

If there is one thing we can be sure of, it is this: Never take anything for granted. Be present in the moment.

Holding that thought in my heart, I am grateful for my life.

I was a little surprised to find that it is already the last Thursday of the month and time for the September Gratitude Circle blog hop. Where did the days go? In spite of all the unexpected days off thanks to turbulence in the city I live in, life has been busy with good times and tough times.

I have been focusing on the good things. After all, it is only a matter of perception. And for every unpleasant thing that happens, there is always something nice to balance it off, even if it is a bit of a challenge to find it sometimes. But once we find it, it certainly  makes life brighter and bearable and turns it into a soul cuddle fest!

Here are a few things from my gratitude journal

I am grateful for a harrowing experience that ended in safety.

You have probably read about the water wars between two southern states in the news. The issue is very much hot without resolution and we are on tenterhooks, unsure when there’ll be another bout of violence. Earlier this month, on the day of the Supreme Court judgment, all hell broke loose in my city. Violence, vandalism, destruction and death were the order of the day.

My husband, who was at work when this started, literally walked through flames to reach home . Most scary afternoon and evening, ever! He walked 17 kilometers through burning tires and trucks ablaze, vandalism in progress, unruly elements stopping him every two minutes, and worst of all, darkness, lit by destructive fire. He finally got home late at night, tired, thirsty, hungry, and in shock because he had never seen anything like it – but smiling. (Runs in the family, eh). I am so grateful to my lovely neighbors who kept me company and in good cheer.

In the midst of all this, my niece chose to bring her baby boy into this world. He’s the sweetest, and I am a happy grand-aunt. Again! I am grateful that she got to the hospital peacefully and everything went well.  I am having so much fun getting things together for him. There’s something so wonderful about baby clothes and the fragrance of baby products!

gratitude circle vidya sury

I am grateful to find recipients for all the things I am giving away in the race to declutter. My grandmother often said–we may be ready to give, but there must be people ready to take. Funny eh? But it is true.

Gratitude for an email from one of Sury’s students, mentioning that he enjoys reading the “mindful living” category on my blog.  I confess I felt tearful.

And then, one of Vidur’s classmates told him he reads my blog. More tears! The world is a beautiful place!

I took the leap into a brand new year in my life on 27th. It was a great birthday, easygoing, filled with love, family and friends, with lots of phone calls and friends dropping by. So blessed.  My friend Sreeja wrote me a beautiful poem.

Gratitude Circle Vidya Sury

My friend, Richard Medcalf, published a roundup post on his website featuring personal effectiveness tips from 60+ experts and I am honored to be included in the post. Here it is.

I discovered the joy of making Facebook slideshow videos last week and it feels like a new toy, considering my love for photography.

And of course, my gratitude list would be complete without appreciating the wonderful relationships in my life – friends, family and neighbors. And books. And coffee. They truly make my life meaningful.

Oh! Speaking of coffee, today is apparently International Coffee Day!

Coffee Gratitude Vidya Sury


Here’s a lovely poem that has been doing the rounds in our circles:


If you woke up this morning with more health than illness, you are more blessed than the million people around the world that won’t survive the week.

If you have never experienced the danger of battle, the loneliness of imprisonment, the agony of torture or the pangs of starvation, you are ahead of 20 million people around the world.

If you have food in your refrigerator, clothes on your back, a roof over your head and a place to sleep, you are richer than 75% of this world!

If you have money in the bank, in your wallet, and spare change in a dish someplace, you are among the top 8% of the world’s wealthy!!

If you hold up your head with a smile on your face and are truly thankful, you are blessed because the majority can, but most do not.

If you can hold someone’s hand, hug them or even touch them on the shoulder, you are blessed because you can offer God’s healing touch.

If you can read this message, you are more blessed than over two billion people in the world that cannot read anything at all!

Thank you for practising gratitude with me today.

Featured image credit Shutterstock

Gratitude Circle Vidya Sury promobox

Do join me in the September Gratitude Circle bloghop, sharing your dose of gratitude, something that inspired you, and other positive moments. The linky will be open until October 15, 2016

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Marilyn Lesniak September 29, 2016 at 8:08 pm

I don’t have a post today, but I will be submitting a meme. Joined your mail list for the monthly reminder and to see all your wonderful uplifting ideas!
Marilyn Lesniak recently posted…Recipe Sharing Party #35

Parul Thakur September 29, 2016 at 8:55 pm

Those riots and burning Bangalore was not a good sight. Sury’s walk home and those moments would have been so hard and stressful. So glad you had the support of friends. Yes, I am also grateful to life. How many times do we realize that being able to live is beautiful. Facebook videos – I need to try that.
Loved your list, Vidya. I will link up soon.
Parul Thakur recently posted…Wordless Wednesday #38

Ruchira Khanna September 29, 2016 at 8:56 pm

You started off beautifully…stay in the present to enjoy and be grateful.
Mankind is either living in the past or worry about their future…alas! the word appreciation hardly gets uttered.
I had been following your status’s on FB…Glad all ended well…phew!
Happy you had a spectacular b’day.
Stay Blessed, Vidya!

Shailaja Vishwanath September 29, 2016 at 9:59 pm

Isn’t it amazing how the little things add up to a jar full of gratitude at the end of the month? I love this series on your blog and am So glad you’ve sustained it so dutifully. I remember that day with Sury. God really does watch over us.

Had another very rough day today on the health front. Your post is like a warm hug reminding me of the things in my life I am grateful for, even amidst the pain and the stress. Stay blessed and enjoy the coffee, Vidya.
Shailaja Vishwanath recently posted…5 Paradoxical Truths I’m teaching my Daughter

Asha September 29, 2016 at 9:59 pm

So glad your husband made it back safely ! Yeah troubled times indeed. Your last few lines truly made us realize how much grateful we should be, for all these things we take for granted.
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Roshan R September 29, 2016 at 11:36 pm

I keep thinking if it were me and there was 17 kms to walk, I would be as good as gone. Kudos and respect to that great man! Overall, its been a tough month and I would struggle to make a list of all that was good… but hopefully, things will turn soon.
Roshan R recently posted…5 Key Steps to a Healthy Heart

Eli September 29, 2016 at 11:50 pm

Oh Vidya- we have birthday on the same day -. the 27th:-) It made me smile to read your post- so much to be grateful for. Happy for you. And that poem is lovely. Stay blessed and belated happy birthday! 27’ers rock, my lady:-) 🙂
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Zoey September 30, 2016 at 1:06 am

Such a positive post! I keep a journal and try to write down 10 things I’m grateful for everyday. But mine usually end up being simple point form notes. I love they way you write your gratitude affirmations! So much joy and happiness in them I can almost feel it
Zoey recently posted…20 Seconds of Courage

Rachna Parmar September 30, 2016 at 7:02 am

I remember that day. How very nerve wracking, Vidya. So glad that all went well. These little nuggets of gratitude you shared with us warmed my heart. Right from readers for your blog to your birthday, so many lovely things this month.

I will write a post today and link up. You know l love this gratitude series.
Rachna Parmar recently posted…How to Stop Your Children From Losing Their Way?

Nabanita Dhar September 30, 2016 at 12:25 pm

We had a stressful couple of days with the situation in Bangalore this month. Glad that Sury came home safe and sound. Reading about these everyday things, about these seeming trifles that actually mean so much , makes me so happy , Vidya. It makes me feel warm inside and I love that feeling . Thank you for this. Will link up in sometime with my post 🙂

Beloo Mehra September 30, 2016 at 3:16 pm

I like the fact that you express a certain aspect of your happiness with tears 🙂 Feels so familiar, because I too am like that many times! Indeed there is much in life and world to be grateful for. What an experience it must have been for Sury to walk through all that chaos and rioting. I truly hope that the states can figure out a workable formula for the problem. Water wars seem to be the future, somehow…unless we learn to value and take care of these precious natural resources, of our mother Earth and environment.
Congratulations for the new member to your extended family!
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Vidya Sury September 30, 2016 at 3:28 pm

It seems like tears come easily these days, Beloo. 🙂 I like to think that they’re cleansing. Love comes from most unexpected sources sometimes. Thank you for your kind words! Indeed it was a scary day, and the sad thing is, the water war is still on. Even a few minutes ago, the news did not look good with our state flouting the Supreme Court’s directive. I can’t believe that we talk of unity in diversity, yet act as though natural resources are personal property because of the manmade borders. So sad.

I hope you’ll join me with your post, Beloo. Hugs!
Vidya Sury recently posted…Soul Cuddle Fest #Gratitude

Vidya Sury September 30, 2016 at 3:36 pm

🙂 I replied before I saw that you already linked up. Thank you so much. What a fabulous post and photos! Hugs!
Vidya Sury recently posted…Soul Cuddle Fest #Gratitude

Beloo Mehra September 30, 2016 at 3:48 pm

Actually, ever since I started working on my post a couple of days back, I was waiting for your Gratitude Circle to go live 🙂 Thank you for inspiring and encouraging! Hugs.
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Vidya Sury September 30, 2016 at 4:01 pm

I just felt hugged, you know! Thank you so much. What you said means so much to me.
Vidya Sury recently posted…Udaipur the Venice of the east

Sue Dunlevie September 30, 2016 at 5:45 pm

I’m currently knitting a baby blanket for a friend and I’m so grateful to be able to do so. Did you knit the presents you gave to your niece, Vidya?

Have a wonderful weekend!
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Vidya Sury September 30, 2016 at 5:48 pm

I wish I had, Sue. But my Mom did. I did sew a whole lot of baby dresses though 🙂 Somehow I never learned to knit. Wishing you a great weekend too!
Vidya Sury recently posted…Soul Cuddle Fest #Gratitude

C. Lee McKenzie October 1, 2016 at 2:37 am

Beautiful and inspiring, Vidya! So much to be thankful for in our lives, even in times of distress. So happy that your husband wasn’t hurt during that chaos! May people see reason and stop the violence. I just keep repeating that.

Shalini R October 1, 2016 at 6:56 pm

Joining you with the Gratitude post this month!
Thanks for inspiring, Mam. Adter penning down my post, I understood that it was important to look back and acknowledge the blessings in our lives.
Happy to hear that everything is better in your city now. It was truly scary to watch the news.
And yes, many more happy returns of the day. 🙂
Shalini R recently posted…Chocolate Brownie Cake without Oven

Vidya Sury October 2, 2016 at 11:01 am

Hugs Shalini! Thank you for joining me. I love your blogging dynamism and the energetic way you approach life. Thanks again for the birthday wishes 🙂
Vidya Sury recently posted…Udaipur the Venice of the east

Birgit October 1, 2016 at 7:55 pm

The birth of your niece came at the right time considering the fear you went through for those few hours and what is going on in your city. I have been in pain this week but, Bleccchhh, who cares when your husband had to work through a horrible area to get home safe and sound. I have heard people upset that someone talks condescending to her on the phone but she can go home to her mortgage free home, a loving husband and her doggie. What you wrote here resonates with me and I am so grateful to be able to read, to be able to look around right now and see my home, my animals and my husband and I am wealthy.
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Vidya Sury October 2, 2016 at 11:00 am

Ah, the things we take for granted, Birgit! Story of our lives no? While I did appreciate what I had, my conscious gratitude journal and practice started just 20 years ago, when my Mom became sick. I couldn’t bear it and she’d constantly tell me, on particularly bad days, to write down what I was grateful for. It changed the way we lived life. Hugs! I hope you find relief from your pain soon. Love you, you know?
Vidya Sury recently posted…Udaipur the Venice of the east

Darla M Sands October 1, 2016 at 11:59 pm

I am incredibly blessed. And I count having found you among them. Blessings toward your region finding peace.
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Vidya Sury October 2, 2016 at 10:58 am

Likewise, Darla. Hugs! I appreciate you very much!
Vidya Sury recently posted…I wish I had these as a First Time Mom

Tina Basu October 2, 2016 at 3:04 am

It’s always great to look back and be thankful. I remember how it was a hard time for you guys during the riots in bangalore last month. Yes we are all thankful that we are fine. Joining in this month
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Vidya Sury October 2, 2016 at 10:57 am

So glad to have you link up, Tina! (I have been enjoying your photos on Facebook – especially your baby!)
Vidya Sury recently posted…I wish I had these as a First Time Mom

Dr.Amrita BASU October 2, 2016 at 10:19 am

Lovely post .Glad yoir husvand was safe..Gratitude is something I try to practice every day.But it gets difficult.
Will be submitting my post through the linky.
Practicing gratefulness has been my goal forever.But still struggling with it.

Vidya Sury October 2, 2016 at 10:57 am

Thank you Amrita! I think it is okay to struggle with practising gratitude. After all, we are human, and have feelings. So long as we try and succeed sometimes, I think it is good enough! I look forward to reading your post! 🙂
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Obsessivemom October 5, 2016 at 9:17 am

This is one blog hop I always try to join in. Some months are just too bad however I remember you saying once that it is those times that we need to remember gratitude most of all – so here I am. Thank goodness your husband is safe – India seems to be in all kinds of unrest of late. I hope peace is restored soon. Those baby things are cute – baby clothes really are just loveable. I need to try making a slideshow too. Seems like fun.

Menaka Bharathi October 6, 2016 at 9:30 pm

This is my first time here and I find the process exciting. I am a staunch gratitude practitioner, so it was easy for me to chip in. Thanks Vidhya ji,, finding this exciting!
Menaka Bharathi recently posted…Simple Indian Moms in Focus – The Multi Dimensional Modern Gypsy – Shinjini

Vidya Sury October 12, 2016 at 6:37 pm

Welcome, and thank you Menaka! It is great to have you here.

Vasantha Vivek October 9, 2016 at 1:20 pm

Always grateful to you, Vidya for this wonderful place to share our gratefulness. Sorry to join the show late, but it is always better late than never …..
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G Angela November 28, 2016 at 12:15 pm

Belated wishes to you vidya, September/October was a difficult time for me, and its over now I am in the recovery phase, nice to read your expereinces, specially sury walking for 17 kms is quite scary and disturbing. I like the way you have shifted your focus and stayed grateful despite so many challenges. That was the lovely poem and thank you for inspiring:)
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