Gratitude and Thanksgiving in 2019

by The Darwinian Doctor

Today I’d like to chat about the power of gratitude and discuss what’s making me feel so grateful this Thanksgiving 2019.  


It’s been shown in studies that expressing gratitude can make you feel happier and less stressed. 

So on this wonderful day of turkey, football, and pumpkin pie, I’d like to share with you a few things for which I’m grateful.  


My 5 year old dancing on the beach

I’m grateful for the gift of family.  Every day, I wake up beside the Dr-ess, with my two boys snoozing in the bedroom across the hall.  I rush off to work before the boys wake, but I’m comforted by the knowledge that they’re in good hands.  After their morning routine, my parents emerge from the ADU in our backyard. They do the pickup and dropoff at school, braving the LA street traffic without complaint.

We all get along fairly well and have family dinner together most Saturday nights.  We have extended family scattered around the country, and get to see them once in a while on vacation.

It’s a true gift to have them all in my life.


I’m grateful for the gift of health.  The Dr-ess and I are young and lucky enough to be free from any chronic illnesses, and our boys so far seem to be growing well and hitting their developmental landmarks.  I haven’t seen any evidence of sociopathic tendencies, unless you count smashing ants and small insects when they turn over rocks.

We do have a seemingly endless succession of cold viruses that the boys bring home from school, but at least being temporarily sick helps us appreciate normal health when we recover.

This cold and flu season has been a little brutal, and it seems like we’ve had three colds in a row recently without a break in between.  Or perhaps it’s just one swiftly mutating cold virus. It’s unclear, just like my kids’ snot right now.

Financial security

I’m grateful for the gift of financial security.  I remember so well the stress of financial scarcity in my childhood.  This puts into perspective the relative abundance of our current position. We are blessed with a great stock portfolio and money to spare for me to pursue more exciting endeavors like real estate.

Even if a particular investment is not performing as well as I hope (stay tuned for an update on this), we have the financial reserves to weather the storm and keep on investing.  

The garden

I’m grateful for the peace and simplicity of my garden.  I’ve been happily sharing my gardening escapades with you from time to time, and I plan to keep on doing this.  It’s fun to write posts about the plants, and here in sunny California, the garden really thrives with very little effort (as long as it gets water).  

I’m especially grateful for the fruiting plants, like the fig trees and lemon tree.  I love how with minimal investment and effort, they pay dividends year after year.  

Today, on this uncharacteristically rainy day, I planted a few mystery cuttings from a neighbor’s fig sapling.  As opposed to the traditional technique, I’m trying a new technique where I leave the leaves on the cuttings. Will they give us Mission figs or Jelly figs? If they take root and grow up, we’ll find out one day together.  

The Darwinian Doctor blog and You!

Finally, I’m grateful for you, my dear readers, and this blog.  It was only two years ago, burnt out and unhappy, when I found the world of personal finance and FIRE.  Within a few months, my commute was happily spent listening to White Coat Investor podcasts and I was playing around with designs for the logo of my very own blog.

Since then, the blog has had over 6000 readers and 10,000 pageviews.  The blog has been a fantastic creative outlet, and has focused my own plans for financial independence.  


So as we prepare to put the turkey in the oven, I’m filled with gratitude for family, health, financial security, and gardening.  And finally for you, my readers.  

I hope your Thanksgiving will be filled with turkey, stuffing, family, and friends.


Are you feeling gratitude this Thanksgiving day? Comment below, and please subscribe so you don’t miss any posts!

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4 years ago

Happy Thanksgiving TDD. Indeed we all have a lot to be grateful and it is nice to reflect on what we have rather than what we want

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