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Being Thankful This Thanksgiving


Wow, can you believe it’s Thanksgiving already? 2012 really flew by and it’s almost over. This year was a transformative year for me because I finally left my engineering career and the nice fat regular paycheck that came with it. I’m very happy for the most part, but there are times when I miss that paycheck (like when we had to pay for a paint job and other repairs for the 4-plex.) All in all, 2012 has been a great year so far and here are just a few things that I’m thankful for.


I’m in a relatively good health and I’m feeling much less stressed out overall. I’m very grateful for the health insurance coverage from Mrs. RB40’s employer. If we didn’t have this safety net, it would be very difficult to quit my job. I need to have an annual physical soon to see if my vital sign readings are improving. I hope all of you are healthy this year as well. Life is no fun if you’re not healthy.

Being thankful this Thanksgiving

Baby RB40 trying to see how many cheerios he can shove into his mouth at once.

Baby RB40

I’m very thankful for Baby RB40. He made our lives so much more hectic in a good way. It can be frustrating sometimes to deal with a rambunctious 22-month-old kid, but overall he is a ton of fun. He brings so much joy into our lives and I can’t imagine our family without him. I’m also thankful for the chance to be a stay at home dad and see him grow. It’s too bad most dads don’t have the opportunity to spend this kind of quality time with their kids. Life is great with a little kid. Everyday is full of exiting discoveries and it remind me how beautiful life can be. I’m not looking forward to the teenage years, though.

Self employment

Thank goodness I’m able to bring in a little income with self employment. We would have to cut our budget down to the bone if I wasn’t making any money. I love self employment because it feels so liberating after 16 years in a mega-corporation. I don’t have to go to any more useless meetings. I don’t have to work with people I don’t like. I can set my own schedule and deadlines. I’m totally responsible for my own business and I don’t have to depend on other people to do something for me (technical stuff at the old job.) All in all, I LOVE being self employed. The income is much less than what I made at the old job, but if I keep working at it, I’m sure I can get to that level again someday.

Mrs. RB40

I’m very thankful that Mrs. RB40 is understanding and supports my decision to go it alone. I don’t think many missuses would be as open to this whole Retire By 40 idea. She is our main breadwinner now and I think she likes the role. Our relationship is doing very well and we will both work to solidify it over the next 50 years. We are a good team although I do have to remind her once in a while that she could have done a lot worse. (Some of her former friends seem to be loser magnets so it’s not too difficult for me.) 😉

Readers and friends

Last, but not least: a BIG THANK YOU to all of you readers and bloggers who help support Retire By 40. Retire By 40 started out with only a few readers (mostly families and friends) in late 2010. Two years later we have over 50,000 page views per month and a solid online footprint. I couldn’t have retired without you. If I didn’t have you behind me, I probably would still be stuck in my old miserable 6×8 cubicle. I’m sending good karma your way and wish you have the best Thanksgiving ever!

These are just a few things I have to be thankful for in 2012. I feel so lucky this year and I hope you feel the same. Have a great Thanksgiving!!!

adios cubicle

Adios Cubicle Hell

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Joe started Retire by 40 in 2010 to figure out how to retire early. He spent 16 years working in computer design and enjoyed the technical work immensely. However, he hated the corporate BS. He left his engineering career behind to become a stay-at-home dad/blogger at 38. At Retire by 40, Joe focuses on financial independence, early retirement, investing, saving, and passive income.

For 2018, Joe plans to diversify his passive income by investing in US heartland real estate through RealtyShares. He has 3 rental units in Portland and he believes the local market is getting overpriced.

Joe highly recommends Personal Capital for DIY investors. He logs on to Personal Capital almost daily to check his cash flow and net worth. They have many useful tools that will help every investor analyze their portfolio and plan for retirement.
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{ 16 comments… add one }
  • @justsmallsteps November 21, 2012, 2:01 am

    Great post! Gives me hope that I’ll be able to retire one day before I’m old and immobile. Thanks

  • Kurt @ Money Counselor November 21, 2012, 6:46 am

    Joe, I’m thankful to have discovered in 2012 interesting fun blogs like RB40! All the best for continued success, and congrats again on your major life transition. That you wanted to memorialize in a photo your abandoned cubicle says it all I think!

  • savvyfinanciallatina November 21, 2012, 7:57 am

    Dear lord that cubicle looks scary! My little desk at work doesn’t look that scary….
    Happy Thanksgiving!!!!

  • Christa November 21, 2012, 9:08 am

    Enjoy your Thanksgiving, Joe! Will Baby RB40 be trying to stuff an entire pumpkin pie in his mouth tomorrow or will he stick to Cheerios?

  • krantcents November 21, 2012, 9:41 am

    There are a lot of things to be thankful and grateful for even when things are not going well. The glass is always half full! I am always trying to accomplish so much, but the things I am proudest of are the relationships and the subjective things in life. Happy Thanksgiving.

  • [email protected]&More November 21, 2012, 10:47 am

    I am so happy you reached your goal and escaped cubicle hell. You are a great inspiration to us all Joe. Keep up the great work!

  • Financial Samurai November 21, 2012, 2:52 pm

    Happy thanksgiving dude!

  • The College Investor November 22, 2012, 6:22 am

    Happy thanksgiving! I think each one of us has reasons to be thankful for. There maybe bumps along the way, but for each failures that we have, we learn new things. Good luck and enjoy the festivity!

  • JayCeezy November 22, 2012, 9:14 am

    Great post, Joe! You are living the dream, and you have made your own luck. Wishing you continued success in 2013.

  • 101 Centavos November 23, 2012, 5:03 am

    256 Cheerios is the standard carrying capacity of a toddler’s food processing system.
    I raised a middle finger on your behalf to that ghastly cubicle.
    Happy thanksgiving, Khun Joe.

  • Elizabeth @ Broke Professionals November 25, 2012, 9:33 am

    I am with you – I LOVE self-employment! Although, I never even had a cubicle in my line of work.. I worked at a desk with a bunch of other news producers (who worked under me), as though we were in kindergarten.

    • retirebyforty November 25, 2012, 10:45 pm

      That sounds just as bad… Self employment is pretty awesome in the internet age. 🙂

  • Melissa November 25, 2012, 12:07 pm

    Your son is adorable! I am with you about being so glad to ditch the meaningless, endless meetings. That was reason enough to quit my job.

    • retirebyforty November 25, 2012, 10:44 pm

      Thanks for the compliment. Yeah, I hate those meetings. It’s such a waste of time.

  • Kathleen @ Frugal Portland November 26, 2012, 11:51 am

    Great post, Joe! Glad you’re happy and healthy.

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