The Sunday Best (12/24/2017)

The Sunday Best
The Sunday Best is a collection of articles I’ve curated for your reading pleasure.

Expect most of the writing to be from recent weeks and consistent with the themes presented on this website: investing & taxes, financial independence, early retirement, and physician issues.


Presenting, the Christmas Eve Sunday Best:


Another personal finance blogger opens a Donor Advised Fund after careful deliberation. Which brokerage did the Chief Mom Officer choose? Giving on FIRE – Vanguard vs. Fidelity Donor Advised Funds. 7 days to lock in a deduction at 2017 rates!


Are you a saver? A spender? Sarah @ Smile & Conquer is somewhere in between. How one personal finance blogger manages Balancing The Splurges With the Scrimps.


Sometimes, a splurge can seem worth it, regardless of circumstances. The Ninja Budgeter splurged and lived to tell this tale: I Spent $11,000 On A Pilot License While I Was Still In Debt (And I’d Do It Again).


Are you sensing a theme here? Me, too. From Millennial Money Man, Confession: I’m Not as Frugal as I Used to Be…and I Like It.


Did you hear? A couple of Californians managed to retire early after something like two and a half years of writing about this very thing. Our Next Life begins their next life with an announcement: We Retired Early! // Our Next Life Begins. Congrats Mark & Tanja!


They haven’t retired early yet, but The Green Swan, who is a decade my junior, has set a date. As I tweeted last week, I would have been better off financially as healthcare banker than a lowly healthcare worker. The millionaire talks Setting My Retirement Date.


How do these people plan to spend their time, anyway? Well, unlike money, we are all granted the same amount of time every day we wake up alive. Great perspectives from The First Habit. How to Live on 24 Hours a Day.


Of course, early retirement is only one option for those who attain financial independence as I like to preach. Adam @ Minafi would say I’m singing to the choir. Why I’m Going for FIO – Financial Independence with Options.


When I published a post on tax reform and the impact on physicians and the self-employed, it garnered more views on day one than anything that has graced this site before. I take that to mean you want to know more about the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act and how it might affect you. Here you go!


We can’t skip the “This Week in Bitcoin” section of The Sunday Best, can we?



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Teaching Kids to Give


While the adults are busy making year-end donations and doing their best to take full advantage of deductions at the 2017 tax rates, we’re also showing our kids what it means to give.

A third of our boys’ three-dollar weekly allowance goes to the “give” jar. We emptied them last week and had each child choose a charity to be the recipient of the stack of ones. After rounding up to the minimum grant Fidelity Charitable will dish out (and pocketing the dollar bills), we sent $50 each to Ocean Conservancy and our local arboretum.

Yesterday, as temperatures struggled to climb out of the single digits, our boys took turns joining me for an hour each at our neighborhood drug store to ring the Salvation Army bell. If it were just me standing there annoying people with a bell, I probably would have collected 23 cents.


could you say no to him?


With my little guys all bundled up, wearing the red apron and ringing the bell, we saw at least a couple hundred dollars drop in the red bucket. One man had the gall to walk by twice without so much as acknowledging us, once on the way in and again on the way out, only to return from his truck with a $100 bill. It was all I could do to not proselytize about a donor advised fund or at least write up an impromptu receipt. His generosity really put a smile on our faces.

One more act of giving this week came from my cephalic vein. My boys aren’t quite big enough to donate blood yet, but I was sure to make a show of removing the Coban™ and bandage that evening. I tell them it’s only right that I give blood. If I continue to give regularly for a few more decades, there’s a small chance I will have donated enough to make up for all the transfusions I will have hung in my anesthesia career.


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Have a Merry Christmas Eve! 

-Physician on FIRE

12 thoughts on “The Sunday Best (12/24/2017)”

  1. I bet kids are able to get more donations for the Salvation Army than adult bell-ringers, especially when it is single digits outside.

    It’s really nice that you’re teaching your children the importance of charity.

    Merry Christmas!


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  3. Really enjoy the getting kids involved in giving part, especially in the cold. Although I think I have you beat, we did t get above zero today and were minus 20 windchill.

    My 3 year old sat on my lap while we granted some sweet DAF Money today. She was more excited about the way the mouse cursor changed, but I think she understood about giving to our church because the Christmas Eve mass last night brought all the kids up to the alter and was directed at them, so the giving might have stuck. Plenty time and practice to come if not : )

    • The high today here was negative 13!

      I love giving from the DAF. It’s almost effortless. It’s a good idea to involve the kids and let them know you give. While the hundred dollar bill was impressive, I told my son that we gave SA ten times that much from our DAF.


  4. I am always impressed at the depth of your round ups. We always joked that anesthesiologist just sit in the or looking at stocks and reading news. It seems to be true in your case! Though I must give props because one of our anesthesiologist came through for me yesterday on call in a simple but major way. So thank you.

    My 2.5 year old made us proud by being ok with giving away some of his brand new presents to kids who don’t have any toys. Teach them young to donate and not be materialistic is so important. Good work.

    Have a great day
    Looking forward to reading some of these articles.

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