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Being thankful is the richest gift of all

By Dian Vujovich

I happen to love Thanksgiving. The word speaks to me about what’s really important in life: Giving thanks for the bounty of all that we have even when we are facing challenges of one sort or another.

Speaking of challenges, there’s nothing like a holiday get-together to test our wills. They are, in a way, an awful lot like an investment portfolio: You do your best to put together a perfect one but one way or another things work out differently.

Yes, a day with the family and friends— or simply friends and some strangers— usually comes with great eats, an argument or two, food spilled, something over- or under-cooked, fine china or crystal accidentally broken and if you’re real lucky, grandpa or Aunt Silvia doing a header right into the garlic mashed potatoes.

Like I said, holiday meals—like the markets and their impact on our portfolios— come with surprises. And that’s the good news. Imagine if everything rolled on as planned. Yikes! What a boring, mundane, un-awesome kind of life—material or otherwise— that would be.

So this Thanksgiving when thinking about all the things that you are thankful for, make sure to include—and give thanks for— all of the challenges you’re facing. You’d be amazed at how powerful giving thanks for personal difficulties can be.

While you chew on that, don’t forget to thank George Washington for giving us this federally endorsed holiday in 1789. BTW, Thursday was chosen for the celebration because it seemed to be the best day of the week for a domestic holiday. You know, Monday was laundry day, Tuesday set aside for ironing—you get the drill.

On that note, Happy Thanksgiving!

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