The Independent Market Observer

Holiday Gratitudes 2014

Posted by Brad McMillan, CFA®, CFP®

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This entry was posted on Dec 23, 2014 12:30:00 PM

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gratitudesThe holidays are always a good time to reflect on the many things we have to be grateful for. As we settle in for a family celebration, here’s my list.

Taking the last two weeks of the year off. Although I continue to read the news and make myself available as necessary, I devote the last two weeks of the year primarily to family. Spending time with my son and wife, welcoming both sets of grandparents into our home, and even taking the occasional nap are privileges I don’t take for granted. (For the rest of 2014, I’ll be revisiting some of my favorite posts from the past.)

My son. Nora and I brought Jackson home six years ago, almost to the day. Last Friday was Family Day, when we celebrate the day he formally became our son. While I can’t say every minute has been ecstatic, we feel incredibly fortunate to have a healthy, happy, energetic, nice little boy to share our lives with. Watching him grow and develop has added a new measure of richness to my life and our marriage.

My wife. All too often, this goes without saying, but I’m saying it. None of us is perfect, but Nora comes much, much closer than I do. She’s everything that I could have asked for in a mate, and I’m incredibly lucky—and grateful—to have her.

My colleagues and my company. I won’t hit this too hard again, but the employees and advisors at Commonwealth are certainly some of the nicest people on the planet. I consider myself fortunate to be able to hang out with them. The company itself is a supportive, encouraging environment where effort is rewarded, people are valued, and, in short, things are as they should be.

My country. For all the problems we have here in the U.S.—which I comment on regularly—there is, in my opinion, no better place to be and no better country to be from.

My era. We live in an age of miracles. When I was growing up, video calls were science fiction, international travel was incredibly expensive and rare, computers took up entire rooms, and encyclopedias were found only at the library. Today, we have all the information in the world at our fingertips—for free. Cancer is no longer a death sentence in many cases. People live longer. The comparison between when I was born and now is beyond belief.

While I spend much of my time analyzing problems and looking for potential pitfalls, I celebrate the holidays in a spirit of humble gratitude for the many blessings I enjoy. I truly hope you can do the same. Happy holidays!


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