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J anuary 2020
F inding the C hange Y ou N eed Don’t Stay in the Same Place Forever
2019 is over, which means one decade has come to an end and another has just begun. When I look over the past 10 years, I feel like so much has happened; it’s hard to place what happened when. As the years go on, I tend to lose track of time, as many of us are prone to do. But what remains are the experiences I’ve had and the impact they’ve made on me. The most prominent, and probably the most impactful, change of this decade involved our country. In asking myself, “What is the cultural vibe of the 2010s?” I thought about the political arena, which has probably displayed the most significant changes. The beginning of the decade started out in one direction, and it ended in the opposite direction. Regardless of where you or I stand, everyone is experiencing a bit of political whiplash. “The goal is to incorporate change that lets you live your life the best way you can.”
Some of those changes have been a long time coming, but maybe it’s better that way — it’s easier for people to digest. Whether or not you disagree, I feel like it’s similar to eating bland food. Once you get it down, all you have to do is digest it. Entering 2020, we find ourselves in a state of indigestion. This is a type of situation applicable to many other circumstances we may face in our lives. If you’re going down the path you’ve been following for years, you might, unconsciously, be settled into it. Do you feel stagnant? If so, you should try working toward making significant changes in your environment.
That’s what people in the new decade should ultimately chase: change. Not just in the political arena, but in the social and cultural arenas, as well. It might need to be a drastic change, whether that’s making a choice to stay in a relationship or deciding to finally purchase your dream home. But no matter what it is, this change is necessary in order to progress further in your life. The goal is to incorporate change that lets you live your life the best way you can.
–Michael Manely 1
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E xpand Y our F amily ’ s H orizons By Opening Your Home to an Exchange Student
Hosting an exchange student in your home may not be something you’ve considered before, but there are many reasons why adding an international member to your family is great for everyone involved. D evelop U nderstanding One of the most valuable traits we can learn is to be understanding of others. Learning about other countries and cultures offers an opportunity to be more receptive to the idea that, no matter how far apart people live or how much the languages we speak differ, at our core, we have a lot in common. Navigating life with this open mindset has far-reaching value that your entire family will benefit from. C ultivate F riendship Welcoming a new member into your home paves the way for new friendships to blossom. Even though the duration
may often feel short, the friendships developed during an exchange are strong, and it’s not uncommon for host families and students to keep in touch for years after they’ve parted ways. Having friends in different parts of the world is also convenient when it comes to travel — you might get lucky enough to have a nice place to stay when you’re in their neck of the woods! B roaden H orizons It’s not just your family that will reap the benefits of opening your home to an exchange student; the student has much to gain as well. They’ll immerse themselves in your culture and get to see how your community lives harmoniously together. You’ll play an important role in showing them what life is like in your backyard while gleaning important perspectives on what life is like in theirs.
D enethris B arnes Discover ing Where She Belongs
Ever since she was a child, Denethris Barnes wanted to become an attorney. She used to go around the house telling everyone she would one day be an attorney, and sure enough, her path led directly here. Denethris had many moments in her life where she realized she wanted to help people get the representation they deserve. Growing up, she had a few family members who ended up on the opposite side of the justice system. “I think watching that impacted me,” Denethris says. “It made me want to do something different and not just be on the right side of the law, but help people too.” However, as her path led her closer to becoming an attorney, she encountered her share of obstacles. While in college, Denethris was involved in a bad car accident that forced her out of school for a year and six months. “During that time, I started to contemplate whether or not being a lawyer was something I wanted to do. The tragedy of that accident made me second guess everything.” As she recovered, she pursued her love of painting and graphic design, but realized that her heart was still set on becoming an attorney.
In law school, Denethris took a family law class taught by professor David Purvis. “I fell in love with the subject, and he was such a wonderful person. I felt like I had to know more.” During one class, Michael came to the school as a guest speaker, and this solidified Denethris’ choice. “I knew that The Manely Firm was where I wanted to be, and now, here I am. It’s been really amazing.” The true pull she felt in this field was the opportunity to help children. “I think that’s what truly led me down the family law path,” she says. “I have a big soft spot in my heart for kids. If there’s anything I can do for them, I absolutely will.” Although Denethris didn’t follow a career path in painting or graphic design, she still enjoys the activity today. In her free time she’ll sit down and paint beautiful paintings, and at times, she’ll paint side-by- side with her son, Joshua. We’re very humbled and pleased that Denethris has found a place within our team to thrive. All of us at The Manely Firm look forward to another wonderful year with such a dedicated attorney.
Look Forward to a Br ighter Future L ook B ack for E xperience Many people take the new year as a chance to discuss ways to eat healthier and how they’ll lose weight, but for some people, this is a time when they reevaluate their life decisions and relationships and look at how they’re going to spend this next year. Often, this means taking a look at where they are in life right now, looking back over the past year, and determining what they want. Many solutions could mean looking for ways to improve interpersonal relationships and getting the necessary tools to make that happen. These tools could be anything from couples counseling to personal growth goals. Our team highly recommends the Gottman Institute located in Seattle. They have fantastic programs in couples counseling and teach couples how to apply the proper tools for fundamental changes and cognitive thinking. Communication is absolutely crucial in a relationship, but it’s often approached in unhealthy ways. When people engage in conversation, they should be aware of whether they’re trying to facilitate, cooperate, or compete in the relationship. When you find yourself competing in a relationship, it will lead to contempt. You want to be conscious of that, which is what the Gottman Institute helps people understand. However, it’s equally crucial for you to determine if your relationship is worth working on. If you look back over 2019 and don’t like what you see, look forward to a brighter life and future. There are healthier ways to live. You can be far happier than you are right now or have been in the last few years. As you start the new year, take stock of your life. Make the changes you need to make to ensure you can live the life you want. You don’t have to do it alone. The Manely Firm helps thousands of people navigate these rocky waters. Call our office at (866) 687-8561 to speak to one of our team members about your life circumstances.
“O ur character is not defined in the good times , but in the hard times .” –P aul B rodie
S imple P ancakes F rom S cratch
Inspired by The New York Times
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 3/4 cups milk
2 tsp baking powder
Unsalted butter or canola oil, to grease skillet
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp sugar, optional
Heat a griddle or skillet to medium-low.
2. In a mixing bowl, combine dry ingredients (including sugar if you like a sweeter pancake). In a separate bowl, beat eggs into milk. Gently stir the liquid ingredients into the dry ones. Mix only until flour is moistened. Clumps are fine. 3. Add some butter or oil to the skillet. If the butter foams or oil shimmers, the temperature is correct. Pour in a pancake of any size, cooking until bubbles form, about 2–4 minutes. 4. Flip and cook other side for 2–4 minutes. Serve warm. 3
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211 Roswell St. NE Marietta, GA 30060 (866) 687-8561 www.allfamilylaw.com
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The Whiplash Effect of the Decade
The Benefits of Hosting an Exchange Student
Finding a True Calling
Evaluate the Moment You’re Living In
Enter 2020 With an Organized Computer
Everyone relies on technology. Computers, laptops, tablets, and phones are staples of modern life. However, it’s easy for these devices to become cluttered with old photos, files, and general disorganization. Luckily, January is National Clean Up Your Computer Month and an excellent time to get your technology in order. S tart by D usting Over time, computer towers can become clogged with dust, which creates additional, unwanted heat within your computer. Regular cleanings will increase the lifespan of your computer and protect its essential components. Compressed air is great for removing most of the dust and other particulates. If the fans or filters are too dirty, you can remove them from the tower to clean them better. If you use water or liquid cleaning products on them, be sure they are completely dry before placing them back into your computer. O rganize Y our F iles Naming and arranging the files on your computer in such a way that they’re easy for you to find can end
up saving you a lot of time. Declutter your workspace by creating one file for pictures, one for Word documents, one for spreadsheets, and one for programs to eliminate the hassle of frantically searching for the files you need. B ack U p Y our C omputer Be sure to back up your computer before you start deleting things. This acts as a safety net in case you delete something you didn’t mean to. Additionally, consider installing a second hard drive. The extra space can help with storing important files without having to worry about how much room is left. C lean U p S pace Any files you’ll never use again should be deleted. Likewise, any programs you haven’t used in a while should be uninstalled. Check your hard drive for files that might be taking up unintended space on your computer. And remember to empty the recycling bin — it’s easy to forget just how much goes in there.
C trl , A lt , D elete Y our C lutter Tips for Nat ional Clean Up Your Computer Month
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