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What Are You Thankful For? I Want To Know.

By November 27, 2013February 1st, 2018Marketing Insights & Strategy
What Are You Thankful For? I Want To Know.

What are you thankful for? That’s the question everyone is asking at this time of year. Perhaps we should be asking this question more often so that we can appreciate the great things in life throughout the year. But that’s a discussion for another day.

Today, I want to talk about what I am grateful for this year and share some thoughts from friends and colleagues.

What Am I Grateful For?

I’m thankful that all of the folks below contributed to this piece. To say that I gave them no warning and threw this at them at the last minute would be the understatement of the century.

I’m grateful that Pam Ann Aungst continues to agree to set up a lunch or dinner date even though I keep postponing.

I’m grateful that Jonathan Bailey never lets me plagiarize and motivates me to get on the treadmill. Ok, that last one is a lie.

I’m grateful that Rob Beeler can be conned into answering any question about digital advertising with the promise of a peanut butter based dessert.

I’m grateful that Mike Brooks likes me even though I ask him the same question about microphones in a million different ways.

I’m grateful that Anna Colibri can pack an AK47 comfortably in a backpack. Long story.

I’m grateful that when I tell Eugene Farber that something on his website doesn’t work even when it really does, he’s still nice to me.

I’m grateful that Lisa Gerber writes words and sentences that I can pass on to my students.

I am grateful for Jillian Jackson because she recognizes that I am a strong black woman.

I am grateful for the new people I’ve met this year, like the awesome Kathi Kruse who puts the pedal to the social media metal.

I’m grateful that Geoff Livingston published his first fiction novel – Exodos – and that I had the privilege of reading it.

I’m grateful for Patrick O’Keefe because if it weren’t for him , I wouldn’t have tried 4,567,123 new sodas.

I’m grateful that Jason Resnick fixes all the stuff I break on my Mac (which is clearly never my fault).

I’m grateful that I don’t have to think about what to do on Pinterest; Cynthia Sanchez just tells me and I obey.

I’m grateful for Téa Silvestre because she and I are totally going to make out this year. Another long story.

I’m grateful for Barton Stabler even though he moved far away and “The Barton Desk” at our office is now empty.

I’m grateful that Lena West continues to inspire me and my students even long after they’ve left my classroom.

I’m grateful to be a part of the Triberr family. Some people live a lifetime and don’t get to work with people as amazing as Dino Dogan and Dan Cristo.

Most importantly, I’m grateful for Carol Lynn. My business partner. My wife. My best friend. And most importantly, a Doctor Who fan (all 13 of them). I met her when I was 18 which means that everything about my adult life has her fingerprints on it. Because of her I am better. Because of her every year is better than the last.

What Are You Grateful For?

Carol Lynn RiveraI’m grateful that this year I got to take the online into the real world and meet a bunch of people that I’d only tweeted/texted before. Turns out they are human beings and sometimes their hair gets blown into a mess by the wind, too. I’m grateful for cats and cupcakes, red painted walls and comfy chairs to write blogs in. And for Ralph Rivera, who doesn’t mind when I feed him tuna sandwiches four nights in a row or that I don’t follow rules like paying attention to word counts. But who does mind when I wear my hobo sweatshirt and then complains and tells me I should look like the smart, grown up business person I am. And so I’m grateful he reminds me of that even when I don’t feel like one.

Carol Lynn Rivera


Pam Ann AungstThis year I am especially grateful for business friends. Ever since starting my own business, I have been doing a lot of networking. Each year, my network grows bigger and bigger, which is great for business, but what continues to pleasantly surprise me is how many of these business acquaintances actually become friends. Whether it’s just Facebook friends, or ‘IRL’ friends that get together for a drink on Friday evening, I truly enjoy getting to know these people on a deeper-than-business level. There is also a heartwarming amount of camaraderie in some of these circles. When someone has a family emergency, the whole gang jumps in to express their concern and support. This year I’ve seen the best of the human spirit exchanged between my ‘business buddies’, and I can’t wait to keep making new friends like these next year!”

Pam Ann Aungst

Pam Ann Marketing

Rob BeelerI’m thankful to be a content czar. My job consists of collaborating with amazing people and sharing their new, innovative ideas with others.

I both travel the world but I also get to work from home, which allows me to spend time with my family more than most people I know.

Rob Beeler


Anna ColibriIt’s that time of year to start turning your baditude to gratitude. Ho, ho, ho and all that. One thing I’m grateful for now is just how much I have to be grateful for. Here’s a partial list: Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras; having a healthy body; my bright and beautiful children; a luscious loving partner, friends and family; light, shadow and trees; San Francisco; and my iPhone, my (offline!) networking group and Google (though we have our differences). I am, of course, also grateful for the entire Pleistocene Epoch without which Ralph might never have offered me this opportunity to share my gratitude. Happy Thanksgiving dear Blogosphere! Here’s wishing you a warm, cozy and comforting holiday season full of cheer.

Anna Colibri


Dan CristoHumans, and I’m talking primarily about myself here, have a nasty habit of undervaluing the most important things in life. We do this because we forget what life is like without those things. Easy access to food and water, a loving wife, roof over my head. We forget the importance of these simple things, yet to go a few days without would be miserable. This year I’m thankful that God has provided my basic needs, and well beyond.

Dan Cristo


Dino DoganI’m really grateful we found Ralph M. Rivera. I know this sounds like one big love fest, but Triberr is a small group of people supporting a giant community, and not only do we need asses in seats that can help manage the community, but we need someone with the specific skill set that Ralph just happens to possess.

The fact that Ralph is a long time Triberr user, a blogger, and someone who understands the Social Media space, is super-important to me.

I am grateful that we’ve found someone who can contribute so much and so effectively to our team.

Dino Dogan


Jonathan BaileyThis Thanksgiving, I am thankful for my career and the fact that I wake up every morning knowing I’m going to spend my day working in a field that I am passionate about and working to make the Web a better place for everyone. I am thankful for my significant other, Crystal, without whom none of my success would be possible and who has stood by me with saintly patience through long hours, financial difficulties, all in spite of my own faults and flaws. Most importantly though, I’m grateful that, because of these two things, I know we can and will survive anything, leaning on passion and love to get us through.

Jonathan Bailey

CopyByte – “Practical Copyright Consulting”

Mike S. BrooksWhat am I thankful for? That’s easy. Relationships.

My business would not be possible without my network. It is how I get clients. But it is also how I am able to grow professionally. It is how I sharpen my own saw. It is how opportunities I never could have imagined have opened to me.

I have spent a career climbing on the backs of others and lifted to success. And I have openly invited others to climb on my back.

I am so thankful for the great relationships I’ve made, including that with my friends Ralph and Carol Lynn. It has been the secret to my success.

Mike S. Brooks

Nuclear Chowder Marketing

Eugene FarberIt’s easy to believe that businesses operate in a vacuum… a trap I often fall into. But the truth is all aspects of your life are interrelated. So while business ideas and worries are always in the back of my mind, I think it’s important to stop and think about other aspects of life every so often – something I usually struggle with. And Thanksgiving is the perfect time for that. So the thing I’d have to be most thankful for is my girlfriend putting up with me while I constantly worry about business matters.

Eugene Farber

SEO Service for Cleveland, OH

Lisa GerberI learned there is a lot of truth to the statement “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.” 2013 was a year to get stronger, that’s for sure. And it didn’t waste any time either starting on New Year’s Day with the curve balls. I am grateful for perspective and love of good people and friends both old and new. I am grateful for small joys at home and small wins at work; all of which has tempered a need I’ve always had for more more more. It doesn’t mean I’ve started thinking small. It means when you start small, and focus on the small, the big happens. This year was a big shift for me to that end and it fills me with gratitude. Not just on Thanksgiving.

Lisa Gerber

Big Leap Creative

Jillian JacksonIn 2013, I have been blessed with some major, MAJOR reasons to be thankful. This year was full of love, and that is the biggest thing of all. Taking a leap of faith is infinitely easier when you are surrounded with love, support and understanding. 2013 has been a year where every month reminded me of those in my life who have sacrificed for me, supported and encouraged me, and above all pushed me further down the path to my own success. I’m looking forward to a joyful journey in 2014.

Jillian Jackson

Stephan HovnanianI’m thankful for Google+. I know that sounds so sappy and superficial but hear me out. Through that platform, I’ve met some of the most amazing people who challenge me daily to push myself as a web professional. Google+ gave me hope for an audience that would be receptive to my area of expertise after trying so hard to crack into platforms like LinkedIn and Twitter. And these relationships I’ve built have opened up extensive opportunities for me to position my business and personal brand in a way that will provide for those really important people: my family (I told you to hear me out).

Stephan Hovnanian

Shovi Websites

Kathi KruseI see how much there is to be thankful for and I’ve got two standouts. As a former car dealership manager, I’m thankful that my industry has awakened to Social Media marketing. Five years ago, I created Kruse Control out of a mere thought. It’s turned into a great business and I get to make an impact on the industry I’ve loved since I was old enough to hold a Hot Wheels car in my tiny hand.

I’m also very grateful for the opportunity to volunteer at Hanaeleh horse rescue. In the coming year, may I bring just as much joy to those gentle souls as they bring to me each Saturday morning.

Kathi Kruse

Kruse Control Inc.

Geoff LivingstonFor me, publishing my first novel Exodus was a great achievement. But I am most grateful that some people actually read it, and most seemed to like it.

Even the criticism was great and rewarding, and helped me to become a better writer. So yeah, that’s what really made 2013 for me.

Geoff Livingston

Tenacity5 Media

Buy Exodus at Amazon

Patrick O'KeefeI am thankful for my family, my friends, my health and my freedom.

Patrick O’Keefe

Managing Communities

Buy Patrick’s book Managing Online Forumms

Jason ResnickI have a tremendous amount to be thankful for, as 2013 was a life changing year for me. First, I’d like to thank Ralph & {Web.Search.Social} for this opportunity to express my gratitude publicly. The paramount person on my list to be thankful for is my fiancé. I’m elated that she will be my wife this coming spring. Her love and support gets me through everything, every single day. I’d be remiss if I didn’t extend my gratitude to my best man at my wedding and business partner, Pete Hallen. I’d like to thank all my family and friends for all their love and support each and every day. I’m also grateful for having amazing clients who keep me busy each day, and sometimes night too – haha.

Our loved ones are what make us who we are. Remember to live in each and every moment with them, and be thankful for them.

Jason Resnick


Cynthia Sanchez2013 has given me so much to be thankful for. I began traveling the country speaking about Pinterest marketing and this gave me the opportunity to combine my passion for travel with my passion for teaching. Along the way I met some great people, some of which are becoming good friends. I’m thankful for my children who continue to awe and inspire me and for the support of my husband that kept me going during down times. Most of all, I’m thankful for the news that my mother is winning her battle against cancer.

Cynthia Sanchez

Oh! So Pinteresting

Téa SilvestreThere’s nothing better than seat-warmers in the car, fuzzy socks and freshly-baked pumpkin bread shared with a friend. I’m also pretty thankful for a recent epiphany that’s allowed me to let go of things that no longer serve me (where my business is concerned). It’s been a wild and crazy year and I’m looking forward to a fresh start and new adventures.

Téa Silvestre

The Word Chef

Barton StablerMy year work-wise has been very good and I have a lot to be thankful for. I transitioned off of two great clients, leaving them in good shape and at a good time for transition. My new role has been one of my most enjoyable with a close team I enjoy working with every day. We’ve made an impact on the company, bringing many new ideas, and processes. The company has been very brave and accepting in adopting these new changes. I don’t think I’ve worked in an environment where everyone is so considerate of each other’s viewpoints, needs, processes, and objectives, while supporting each other with such thoughtful, intelligent and constructive feedback. I’m in that enviable position where I can happily do my best work every day.

Barton Stabler


Lena WestI’m grateful for health, peace, and prosperity.

I’m also grateful for my family, friends, the Influence Expansion team, scholars and clients.

Oh, and also for organic soap, herbal tea, artisan jewelry and Judge Judy.

Lena West

Influence Expansion

Join the discussion 12 Comments

  • I’m thankful that Ralph M. Rivera would take the time to reach out to me about imaginery problems on my website 🙂

  • What am I thankful for! Hmm interesting question and before I answer what a great post!
    I think that I should do something similar on mine!

    Well I am grateful for my late mother – Patricia Margaret Dews whom I lost on 25th of December 2010 who is the inspiration behind my blog and business, who brought me up to be the best that I can be and who carried me and brought me into this world!

    I miss her dearly and I wish I could do something that would bring her back as this world is a sadder place without my amazing mother!
    Anyway thanks Ralph for the opportunity of posting my comment, means a lot.
    All the best.
    – Phillip Dews

  • Hi Ralph,

    Absolutely love this list.

    My man Phil Dews wrote a beautiful comment below. I am grateful for my health after a nasty, scary, debilitating stomach bacteria attack here in India.

    For weeks I was bed-ridden and had to be rushed to the emergency room to get an IV drip.

    Slowly recovering but well on the way back. What a feeling of gratitude.

    Thanks for sharing!


  • Thanks for sharing this, Ralph 😀

    I had a busy thanksgiving – but it was awesome, just like this year. I am grateful for every single thing that happened to me during this year. I consider this year as the best year of life, learned a lot of things (plus I relearned to love learning), acquired a lot of habits and pursued my interests within various fields.

    I still feel that I could have done so much more. But, that’s okay. I have had a good year – the best one I can remember (and I really wish that I will remember this year in 10 years).

    Thank you for the awesome post, Ralph 😀 Hope you had a great Thanksgiving!

  • Sylviane Nuccio says:

    Hi Carol,

    I hope you and your family had a great Thanksgiving day with lots of good food.

    That’s very great that you have so many things you can be grateful for, and thank you for always posting great posts.

  • Hi Ralph,
    This is really amazing!
    wonderful people with their thanksgiving moments.
    Indeed this year is really amazing and I could get
    in touch with a good number of amazing personalities
    in the World Wide Web World 🙂 Thanks again for
    sharing these dear ones thoughts.
    Keep inform
    Have a blessed weekend. 🙂

  • Adrienne says:

    Hey Ralph,

    What a wonderful post and I know that everyone you listed really appreciates that so very much. I’m pretty sure they’re thrilled about having you in their lives too. You keep them on their toes and I for one am thrilled you’re now part of the Triberr family. We’re an awesome community aren’t we!

    I’m definitely thankful for life. Yes, just being able to get up every single morning to have all these amazing and wonderful experiences. So many of my friends and family didn’t make it to their prime so I thank him every single morning for allowing me another wonderful day. I could go on but that would be yet another blog post in itself.

    Thanks for continuing to provide us with excellent content. You, Carol Lynn and Scott too! Can’t leave them out ya know.

    Have a glorious week.