I hope this note finds you making peace with summer coming to a close. As for me, I've been enjoying "Upstate" New York. (Note to NYC: Beacon is not upstate lol). I've enjoyed hosting friends coming up from the City. (Note to NYC: from where I sit the "city" now means Brooklyn too). My family decided to stay close this summer and enjoyed local hikes, farms and events. As I write this, the contents of our basement are drying out on our driveway due to flooding last week, but luckily it was mostly stuff that needed to go anyway.
I've also found a new hobby (ok, obsession) up here - landscaping and gardening with native plants. It's amazing how much you can contribute to the local ecosystem and do something to combat global warming just through the plants you choose to plant on your little plot of earth. I've been making a lot of parallels between native gardening and my client base actually. A lot of you already know that I'm no longer taking new clients, so many of the clients I work with now are from years past. I am continually impressed by my longstanding clients as they continue to grow and evolve. In native gardening with perennials, there is a saying regarding the years it takes for native plants to thrive. "First they sleep, then they creep, then they leap." I look at some of my clients who over the years are in completely different circumstances now compared to where they started. A client who started off in consumer debt and who I advised through bankruptcy is now a homeowner and successful business owner. Many are earning much more and in a position to take advantage of it due to good habits they established when they weren't earning as much. Several have paid off student loans in full. Several have purchased their first properties over the past year including a few going through the process right now. It's truly a gift to participate in the growth and big events of people's lives. I just want to thank all of you who have worked with me as clients for being vulnerable, brave and dedicated enough to do this work. It's truly a privilege to witness. Now I have the unique privilege of supporting Deborah Adeyanju, CFA and Calli Case, CFP® the new Lead Planners as they continue grow their client list to bring the Brooklyn Plans model to new clients. I think native gardening and running a business are similar in that the growth is rewarding. The efforts of your labor are evident - in one case through the strength, beauty and wildlife attracted to the area and in the other through the successes of clients and your staff. We celebrated a milestone of hitting double digit millions of assets under management this summer and now have 4 advisers on staff. I'm excited for the future of Brooklyn Plans and for those of you that have worked with us or will going forward. Let's keep growing.