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I want to wish all the Todayers out there a Merry Christmas from the Averys! For those Todayers who don’t celebrate Christmas I hope your holiday season has been amazing and you enjoy spending time with your family and friends, eating way too many cookies and watching enough reruns of A Christmas Story to last all year!

December is a month of reflection and opportunity to give thanks for those we care about most! This week we are spending time with our entire family. We haven’t all been together since Chelsea and I married four years ago, so it really means a lot to us!

With that, I have decided to take a week off and spend it with my family! My next article will pick back up on December 29th and we have an awesome schedule or articles already planned for 2015!

As for the GIVEAWAY: I have wrapped a present I want to send to one of you! If you want it, all you have to do is write in the comments below what you are thankful for this year and why! One random winner will be selected by December 29th and the winner will be posted in the comment section. All I ask is if you are selected you are willing to share with the group what was in the box!

Soak up the time with your family and friends this week. I am looking forward to starting a new year with you in a few days! Merry Christmas, Happy Giveaway Day, and as always…

Dream BIG!

Ryan Avery

Author Ryan Avery

Hi, my name is Ryan Avery! Every Sunday I share the "notes" I use to build my keynotes. They are personal stories and tangible strategies we can use to improve the way we communicate at work, at home and with ourselves.

More posts by Ryan Avery

Join the discussion 28 Comments

  • Monty Ray Davidson says:


  • Pebby says:

    Ryan, I am thankful for many things this year. I am thankful first and foremost, for my faith that God has given me. Second, I am thankful that I got to meet you!, Third, I am thankful that I am going to be a grandma next year. Fourth, I am thankful for the growth through Toastmasters that has occurred in my life. Fifth, I am thankful for my health. And, lastly, I am thankful for the freedoms that we have in this country to share, gather, and worship without being afraid for our lives.

  • Karen Spohn says:

    I’m thankful for my family, friends and good health. Last year, I was sick the whole month of December… Which then went over to January… I finally felt better on June.

  • Chen Choon says:

    I am thankful that this years Toastmasters Convention is held in my home country Kuala Lumpur. I am thankful to the organisation for giving me the opportunity to attend the biggest Toastmasters event of the year. It has allowed me to meet the many past world champions as well as past leaders. More importantly, it is an unforgettable milestone for me as a Toastmasters.

  • Cory Boehn says:

    Thankfully for the opportunity the learn from Ryan’s presentation in Winnipeg. The ideas you shared are still being passed along to other Toastmasters more than seven months later. This gives lots of people the opportunity to be better speakers

  • Dustin Hogan says:

    I am grateful and thankful for the power of mentorship in my life.

    I have amazing support around me in all aspects of my life and it truly makes the journey of life more enjoyable and a lot of fun.

    Here is to a bigger and better 2015 filled with many big dreams being achieved by everyone in this community!

    Happy Holidays Ryan and Chelsea.

  • Ryan Avery says:

    We are so lucky to have so much opportunity here in the USA Monty, I agree! Thanks for sharing and I hope you have a great Christmas!

  • Ryan Avery says:

    Hi Pebby, these are amazing things to be grateful for! So happy to hear you will be a grandmother next year and I hope to see you again soon in 2015!

  • Ryan Avery says:

    Hey Karen, health is very important indeed! I am so glad to hear you are feeling better! Enjoy your family and friends and let’s look forward to an awesome 2015 together!!!

  • Ryan Avery says:

    We are so thankful for the hospitality and generosity of the Malaysians we met in Kuala Lumpur and I am so thankful we were able to have the convention there this year! What an amazing experience! Thank you for sharing this and hope to see you again in 2015!!! Merry Christmas Chen and as always… Dream BIG!!!

  • Ryan Avery says:

    Thank you Cory! I am so glad to hear that people are becoming better speakers! The more people we inspire to speak up, the better leaders we will have, the better world we will live in and better times we will have! I hope to be back in Winnipeg again soon and I hope you have a fantastic Christmas break! Thanks Cory!

  • Ryan Avery says:

    Happy Holidays Dustin! I agree with you completely about the power of mentorship! It is hard to think about where I would be without all the amazing people who have helped me and continue to support us along the way! Great thing to be thankful for this year Dustin and thank you for the reminder! Looking forward to 2015 with you and I hope you enjoy the rest of 2014!

  • Paula Howley says:

    I’m grateful for all the opportunities for growth I was given this year. I am grateful for my family, my students, my growth as a coach and for truth. I am grateful that I live in a country where I can express my beliefs without fear of being hurt. I am grateful for life!

  • Jon Hammond says:

    I am so thankful for the many gifts of this year. For my wonderfull family and the wedding of my youngest daughter. Also for my extensive Toastmasters family. What a great network of positive, professional people. Also, very thankful for knowing you, Ryan Avery.

  • Sharookh Daroowala says:

    Thankful for the calm and sanity in my life and the precious group of family and friends that work hard to keep me that way.

  • I’m thankful this year for wonderful friends. My family all lives far away, and I’m lucky to have found some great folks here in town to become the family that I chose. They are the kind of folks that you can laugh with, count on if you need someone to visit you if you’re in the hospital, or plan a quick weekend getaway with.

    I’m also thankful for the virtual “friends” I’ve made connecting with people on social media. Can’t wait to meet folks like you Ryan in person someday!

  • Dena says:

    For 2014, I am so thankful for the opportunities that came my way. Many of them unexpected, and unplanned. These sometimes are the greatest gifts of all. I wish Peace and blessings through the holidays and the new year!

  • Sean Munro says:

    I’m thankful for having so many incredible people in my life! Why? They are a source of inspiration and support – and basically all around make life that much more enjoyable!

    In other news I’m thankful that those crazy people at the European Space Agency landed a robot on the surface of a comet this year! How cool is that!!!

    @Ryan – btw got my order/package – thank you very much. Enjoying the CD’s on the morning comute this week 🙂

    Happy Holidays to All!!



  • Donald Drennon says:

    I am thankful for Toastmasters. My corporate club (American Express Tech Talkers) has given me more confidence to speak to my boss, my co-workers and at general presentations for hobby clubs and other volunteer Organizations where I am a member. I also got the opportunity to hear Ryan speak twice and purchase the fantastic speakers kit. I am looking forward to 2015 and doing BIG things!

  • Vivien says:

    Merry Christmas/Happy New Year to Ryan and chelsea!

    Thankful for the friends I have that take time out of their day to message me and ask “hey, are you ok?” There were times this year when I really needed someone to talk to, and I’m incredibly thankful I have friends that all had the knack to sense when those times were for me.

  • Marsha Ware says:

    My life has changed so much this last year but with each bump in the road there has been a ray of sunshine, a better opportunity and a new strength. I am so blessed with 3 wonderful kids and 3 fantastic and amazing grandkids, who have shown me to never give up, to keep on going. To them and all my friends who have supported me these last three years especially, I am truly humble on their love and generosity, I couldn’t of made it without them all. I am so glad I can help be a part of others success which enriches my life. I look forward to the new year that will soon be here.

  • Tony says:

    In 2014, I am thankful that I have been able to practice my public speaking in Toastmasters and other organizations. During this past year I have started to understand the importance of becoming a better storyteller and in 2015 I am going to work on learning how to use stories to better share my message.

  • Matt Zaun says:

    This year I’m extra thankful for my wife because she is awesome. My wife, Courtney and I have had a fairly challenging year and have grown closer because of it.


  • Ryan Avery says:

    Thank you to everyone who commuted and share this article! CONGRATS TO… Dustin Hogan for being the winner of this giveaway! Dustin, please email me at and I will send you your gift 🙂 Happy New Year everyone and thanks for playing!

  • Ryan Avery says:

    I agree with you Paula. My word for 2015 is going to be “GROW” and I am so thankful I have that opportunity! Hope you have a great New Year and looking forward to seeing you soon!

  • Ryan Avery says:

    Those are all great things to be thankful for Jon! I am so glad we connected and know each other as well! Let’s make 2015 amazing!!!!

  • Ryan Avery says:

    These are great things to be thankful for Sharookh! Thank you for your comment and hope to see you soon!

  • Ryan Avery says:

    We will FOR SURE meet in person one day soon Sharon 🙂 So glad we are connected online and hope you have a great New Year!

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