Gratitude Foundation

Gratitude is an Attitude!

"Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow."

- Melody Beattie -

"Be thankful that you don't already have everything you desire, If you did, what would there be to look forward to?

Be thankful when you don't know something
For it gives you the opportunity to learn.

Be thankful for the difficult times. During those times you grow.

Be thankful for your limitations
Because they give you opportunities for improvement.

Be thankful for each new challenge
Because it will build your strength and character.

Be thankful for your mistakes
They will teach you valuable lessons.

Be thankful when you're tired and weary
Because it means you've made a difference.

It is easy to be thankful for the good things.
A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who are
also thankful for the setbacks.

GRATITUDE can turn a negative into a positive.
Find a way to be thankful for your troubles
and they can become your blessings."

- Author Unknown -

Keep a Gratitude Book,

a notebook in which you write down the events of the day that have given you joy and for which you are grateful. Sit down at a quiet moment each day and write down what you were most grateful for that day. Relish just knowing that you had good in your life, and that no matter the other complications of the day, you found and rejoiced in the things that made it all worthwhile.

"I got out of bed on two strong legs. It might have been otherwise. I ate cereal, sweet milk, ripe flawless peach. It might have been otherwise. I took the dog uphill to the birch wood. All morning I did the work I love… But one day, I know, it will be otherwise."

- Jane Kenyon -

in her poem "Otherwise",
which she wrote after being diagnosed with terminal cancer

Tikkun Olam

An important counter-balance to all the bad news is to focus on specific deeds of care and loving-kindness that directly "repair the world". These acts can tilt the scales, emotionally and spiritually, and support hope and resilience, if not optimism.

Volunteer opportunities abound, and you can also create your own by offering to shop or clean for an elderly or disabled person, by serving meals at a homeless shelter, cleaning a public park or beach, or tutoring a child. These kinds of win/win opportunities can help us feel empowered, recognized, and appreciated.

Kids Korps USA is a resource for getting involved in service.

“To educate yourself for the feeling of gratitude means to take nothing for granted, but to always seek out and value the kind that will stand behind the action. Nothing that is done for you is a matter of course. Everything originates in a will for the good, which is directed at you. Train yourself never to put off the word or action for the expression of gratitude."

- Albert Schweitzer -

"The sun will not rise or set without my notice or thanks.

- Winslow Homer -

"You simply will not be the same person two months from now after consciously giving thanks each day for the abundance that exists in your life. And you will have set in motion an ancient spiritual law: the more you have and are grateful for, the more will be given you."

- Sarah Breathnach -

"There are seven sins in the world: wealth without work, pleasure without conscience, knowledge without character, commerce without morality, science without humanity, worship without sacrifice, and politics without principle."

- Mahandas Gandhi -

Cicero said: "Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others."

We must be the world we
want to create.”

- Mahatma Gandhi -

"We make a living by what we get;
We make a life by what we give."

- Ronald Reagan -

The Gratitude Foundation

Believing strongly that "to whom much is given, much is required", Ellen Stiefler created the Gratitude Foundation as a means of giving back to those in need. Ellen donates a portion of the profits from the Stiefler Law Group, PC to charities through the Gratitude Foundation every year. Please join us in sponsoring the organizations whose links and information you find below!

The Gratitude Foundation's mission is to foster appreciation and gratitude in the world ; to promote health and wellness for all people; and to help children get a good start in life.



Helping all children get a good start in life is a primary mission of the Gratitude Foundation and purpose of Ellen's life.

Ellen has served on the National Board of Directors of Kids Korps USA for eleven years, and was co-president for two years.

Kids Korps is a nonprofit youth volunteer organization which instills in America's youth the spirit of giving while providing valuable education in leadership and responsibility. 

Kids Korps helps children get involved in community service.  Lending a helping hand can make a difference in someone's life. Service and and doing for others gives children a sense of purpose and positive self-esteem.

Tim works regularly at the Monarch School for homeless and at-risk kids

Ellen and Robby build houses for families in need

Gratitude Foundation members Tim, Zack and Robby Stiefler complete a work project.

Ellen is grateful to have received her musical training at the world-famous Juilliard School where she started as a violin student at age 6.  Now, as an adult, Ellen is privileged to be able to sponsor other young musicians to share their beautiful music with the world.  Ellen recently hosted a fundraising event at her home to benefit the San Diego Youth Symphony featuring the talents of these young musical prodigies.

The San Diego Youth Symphony Orchestra

The Gratitude Foundation supports the following other charities to fulfill its mission to help children:

Helping children get a good start in life begins at home - Ellen with her greatest blessings - sons Tim, Robby & Zack


The Gratitude Foundation makes grants to organizations furthering its mission to promote health and wellness . Ellen serves on the board of directors of Scripps Center for Integrative Medicine and supports many other health and wellness initiatives.

The Gratitude Foundation supports the following other charities to fulfill its mission to promote health and wellness:


Ellen Stiefler is represent and work with many who are promoting Peace, Gratitude and Wellness.  Her law practice is devoted to supporting these higher intentions. 


The Gratitude Foundation also promotes and fosters creativity, invention and self-expression. Specific goals and activities of the Foundation are:

  • Providing free or low-cost web-accessible information for creators and inventors;
  • Providing free or low-cost assistance with legal and business needs of creators and inventors;
  • Providing a web-generated database of information to assist creators and inventors to be able to protect, disseminate, share and reap reward from sharing the products of their creativity and invention with the world;
  • Providing lectures and seminars with speakers who educate and inspire;
  • Providing affordable workshops to learn new skills and resources;
  • Providing peer mentors to creators and inventors.


Coming Soon!

The Gratitude Foundation Blog - where you will be able to share


Appreciation and Gratitude
wisdom, hope, love, forgiveness, humility

" As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them."

- John F. Kennedy -

"Thankfulness is the beginning of gratitude.
Gratitude is the completion of thankfulness.
Thankfulness may consist merely of words.
Gratitude is shown in acts.

- David O. McKay -

"'Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.

Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.

It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us.' We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be?

You are a child of God. Your playing small doesn't serve the world.

There's nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.

It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we subconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we're liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others."

- Marianne Williamson -

Moving yourself into a state of heartfelt gratitude is spiritually equivalent to giving a prayer of thanks and appreciation.


Thank you, as a way of living.
Live in thankfulness for the richness that makes life so precious.

When lived to its fuller potential, Mahalo is a value that creates habits of thankful living in us. Appreciation and gratefulness stroke deeper color and richer texture into our character. We give thanks by the acts of living thankfully, not simply by saying the words “thank you.” When we look around us, we are filled with wonder, and we sense the immense richness that already surrounds us. We do not lament that which we may not have. As we count our many blessings we Mālama them and cherish them, we relish the bounty they bring to life, to our life. We celebrate them joyously.

—MWA page 194

As a value in the Hawaiian culture, Mahalo digs deep: It is living within an attitude of gratitude, living each day with a sense of thankfulness for all the elements that make life so precious. It is the fundamental realization of how much you have, simply because you are alive. You begin to relish your present: Both nostalgia for the past and anxiousness for the future lose their grip on your longing. Mahalo is living in a way that demonstrates that you are humbled by this gift of the present, and are thankful for it, living your life in a way that celebrates it. When you live Mahalo you don’t take anything for granted, and you Mālama what you have, taking better care of it.

Mahalo is the life perspective of giving thanks for what you have by using your gifts—and using all your gifts—in the best possible way. You draw from Ho‘ohana, and your inner passions, and live with intention. You begin to realize that it would be wasteful not to use whatever talent you were fortunate enough to be born with; it would be ungrateful and unappreciative. You begin to question what good is destined to emerge from the talent you have, and you explore all possibilities. Mahalo goes beyond thinking or saying “thank you” for something you’ve been given; It is when you give thanks with more giving, you live in a manner that makes you deserving.

—MWA page 196-197

Contact Us

3525 Del Mar Heights Rd.
San Diego, CA




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