The Law Offices of Kevin Jensen - January 2022

480.632.7373  January 2022

Inspired by Benjamin Franklin Thinking About How Much Has Changed

On Jan. 17, 1706, one of the world’s most influential people was born. Benjamin Franklin was born in Boston, Massachusetts, and for the next 85 years, he would go on to create a legacy that we still utilize today. As we approach what would be Franklin’s 316th birthday, I’m reminded of just how important he is to our history — and just how rapidly things change!

Franklin’s birthday is a poignant reminder of how far we have come, too. I often think back to how different my grandparents’ childhoods were compared to my own and my children’s childhoods. Just a few generations ago, my grandparents were still using horses and buggies as a mode of transportation, simply because it wasn’t easy to afford a vehicle. We didn’t think twice about owning a car when I was growing up just over half a century later.

Franklin was a monolithic figure for his time, and that was quite rare. He wasn’t a ruler or a president — in fact, as a founding father, he would help establish what we know as the U.S. presidency — but he was known worldwide for his writing and scientific studies. Think about that: In a time without the internet, one man could be so well known across the globe just for his writings and thinking. It speaks to how wise he was. Many of us know about Franklin's kite experiment, which demonstrated how electricity works, but did you know there are so many other inventions for which we have Franklin to thank? Because of his ingenuity, we now have modern libraries, and the fire department system has saved countless lives since its invention. Franklin was also integral in printing and free press, too. Plus, his wood stove helped create better heat sources in homes. The list could go on, and it’s easy to see why Franklin was a true renaissance man. He had his hand in nearly everything that happened in the nearly nine decades he was alive. Many of you know that I’m quite the history buff, so it’s not easy for me to say which specific time period or person I admire the most. However, while I’m a huge fan of American history in all its forms, I have to say Franklin is someone I really admire. If I had to choose a favorite person from history, he would easily make it to the top. He was knowledgeable, well-spoken, innovative, and from what I read, funny, too. It’s hard not to be fascinated by him.

And — while it makes me feel old — it’s crazy to think about how much has changed from when I was a kid. I can remember when all the phones in our house were hooked up to the wall and had a cord. If you were hoping for any semblance of privacy on a phone call, you had to pull the cord as far as it could go around the corner. And even then, that was if you could remember a person’s phone number. If not, you had to skim through the phone book that hung on the wall. Today, I barely even remember phone numbers. My cellphone does it for me. The world was completely changed when the iPhone was invented. By then, many people had cellphones, but these were really only used for calling and the occasional text. With the iPhone, we learned this little device could conjure up information in seconds, snap photos, connect us to others, and make phone calls and send texts. Heck, that’s more than the first Apple computer could do, which I hate to admit, but I do remember using in high school. Innovation is a powerful thing, and we are better off because of people like Benjamin Franklin, who look at our world and say, “How can we make this better?” Be sure to celebrate that this month.

480.632.7373 1 -Kevin Jensen

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Easy, Affordable Ways to Embrace Nature in Your Home

Thanks to the chaos we’ve experienced since 2020, many design experts are looking to create spaces that are calm, welcoming, and grounded. Enter one of the biggest design trends of the 2020s: neutral, natural elements. Here are some easy ways to bring nature inside and boost your home’s look without overspending.

local nursery, and they will help you find the perfect leafy friend(s) to fill your space.

Then, opt for pieces that won’t decay. When choosing new decor for your home or when updating your knickknacks for the seasons, look for wooden or natural items that don’t have a life cycle. Fake plants, wooden statues and picture frames, and piles of stones or vases with rocks can bring the richness of the great outdoors into your home with little effort and can be reused each season. Now, look to your backyard! If you have a big pine tree that produces pine cones each year, don’t let those go to waste! Baskets or vases filled with pine cones can be great fall and winter decor pieces, while lots of clever crafters have made wreaths, scent diffusers, and other fun items with pine cones found in their yard. Just be mindful of what you take from nature. Don’t take anything of value to the ecosystem, and don’t grab items from state or national parks.

Finally, utilize windows. Part of embracing natural design elements is letting nature do the talking! Focus your design in each room around windows. For instance, fix plant displays near windows or hang bird feeders in trees you can see through your windows. If you really want to get cozy with the outdoors, consider installing a skylight! To find more inspiration, take a walk and discover how Mother Nature has designed her space. Bring those ideas into your home and enjoy the comfort of the great outdoors within your own great indoors.

The obvious option is to add more houseplants. And plants don’t have to be difficult! Consider your home space, first. How much light do you get? Is it a dry or humid home? How likely is it that you will remember to water a plant? Bring these concerns to your


3 Lessons From This Huge Split

a divorce, and it’s only natural to want to vent about your ex. But be careful about the platform in which you choose to do so. Degrading your ex in front of your children can be harmful to their relationship with their other parent — or with you. Furthermore, social media can turn your personal life into a spectacle and add unnecessary drama. Neither of the Gateses spoke ill of the other in the media after their divorce, and their families are healthier for it. It wasn’t too-little-too-late for a marriage agreement. Just a few years before their divorce, the Gateses filed a marriage separation agreement that effectively acted as a postnuptial agreement. Surprisingly, the pair didn’t have a prenuptial agreement, despite Bill’s success prior to the marriage. However, this marriage separation agreement allowed the couple to divide their assets fairly while still being married, much like a postnuptial agreement can do. It’s also never too late to divorce. Perhaps the most shocking part of this split is the longevity the couple had in their marriage prior to the divorce. Spending nearly three decades with someone is a big commitment, but the Gates’ divorce proves that longevity does not equate to happiness. Divorcing over 50 years old is a scary prospect, but as more couples “gray divorce,” they’re discovering they have a lot of life left to live. We haven’t heard the last of Bill and Melinda Gates. A healthy divorce, regardless of whom it’s between, can serve as a model for couples beginning this process. If you need further guidance, our team can help. Please call the Law Office of Kevin Jensen at 480-632-7373.

When Bill and Melinda Gates announced their divorce in early 2021, many were shocked to hear the couple of 27 years was going their separate ways. Their marriage was seen as steady, because Microsoft’s influence and the impact of their charity, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, continued to grow. (Bill has admitted to infidelity prior to the divorce, however.) But while the split may come as a surprise, the end of the Gates’ marriage may actually be a healthy example to follow. Here’s why. They never bad-mouthed each other. There are many complicated emotions that can accompany


Check for These Signs! Think Your Ex May Be Unfit to Parent?

Co-parenting isn’t an easy venture, but with open communication and trust, children who grow up in these relationships can build healthy, happy lives. However, some parents struggle letting their children be alone with their other parent. While this can be an emotional adjustment, in other circumstances, a parent may worry if the other is fit enough to care for and raise a child. If you’re concerned about your co-parent partner’s abilities to parent, you have a right to bring your concerns to the courts for greater protection. Before you begin, consider what the courts define as an unfit parent in Arizona. The Child’s Safety and Reactions Is your child scared to go over to their other parent’s house, or does their attitude change dramatically when transitioning to the other parent? This may be a sign that your child doesn’t feel safe in their other parent’s home. Watch for bruises and signs of neglect, and listen

to your child’s description of what they did at their other parent’s home. Use your instincts to determine just how safe your child feels in their other home. Your Ex’s Habits Everyone has their reasons for divorce, but your reasons may also make your ex an unfit parent. For example, if alcohol or substance abuse were problems in your marriage, this may be a sign that your ex is unable to parent well. ( Note: People in recovery can make great parents!) It can also be a bad sign if your ex struggles to maintain their personal and household hygiene. Look for signs of neglect both on them and their home for a clue as to how they may care for your child. Improper Concern Your ex may not be abusive, and they may take very good care of your child. But you do have a right to be concerned if you believe your child is being exposed to inappropriate things. For example, if your ex hosts a party with excessive drinking or drugs while your child is home, this can be very dangerous for your child — no matter how well-fed, clothed, and cared for they are. If any of these signs set off alarm bells in your head, call our team today at 480-632-7373. We can help you find a solution to protect your child.

Chicken With Lemon Herb Sauce


Healthy eating doesn’t have to be bland with this citrusy chicken!


• • • •

1/3 cup and 2 tbsp olive oil, divided

• • • •

1/2 cup parsley, chopped

4 boneless chicken breasts

1/3 cup mint, chopped

1 clove of garlic, minced

1 1/2 tsp pepper

1/4 tsp salt

1 lemon, for juice and zest

Directions 1.

Preheat oven to 450 F.

480.632.7373 In a large ovenproof skillet, heat 2 tbsp olive oil. 3. Season chicken with salt and pepper if desired and sear it in the skillet for 3 minutes on each side. Bake chicken until its internal temperature is 165 F. 4. In a blender, add 1/3 cup olive oil, garlic, salt, parsley, mint, pepper, and lemon zest and juice and blend ingredients until coarsely mixed. 5. Top chicken with sauce and serve! 3 2. Inspired by


3740 E. Southern Ave. #201 Mesa, AZ 85206

Celebrating Innovation and Ben Franklin

Add More Nature to Your Home in 4 Simple Ways!

3 Lessons From Bill Gates’ Divorce

Top Signs Your Ex Is an Unfit Parent

The Importance of Fruits and Vegetables for Kids

Help Your Kids Grow Up Strong and Smart

Get Fruits and Vegetables Into Their Diets

You probably heard your parents tell you to eat your vegetables so you can grow up big and strong. But did you know that eating fruit and vegetables can have a positive impact on a child’s mind? A recent study from across the pond in the United Kingdom set out to put this theory to the test.

high school and 9% of elementary school students reported eating no fruits or vegetables at all. Those students who ate the recommended portions of fruit and vegetables scored on average 3.73 units higher in regards to their mental well-being than those who did not eat any. While this newfound research provides a link between improved mental well-being to fruits and vegetables, there are many more benefits that come with eating the daily recommended portion. There is a plethora of minerals and vitamins hiding within our favorite fruits and vegetables that help with lowering cholesterol, reducing and maintaining a healthy weight, and protecting against diseases such as some cancers, heart disease, and Type 2 diabetes. They can also curb the appetite to stop you or your kids from reaching for an unhealthy snack. And they taste great!

The study was published in BMJ Nutrition, Prevention & Health. Researchers sent surveys to more than 50 schools across England and received responses

from 11,000 students. The survey asked schoolchildren about their mental health as well as their dietary choices. The average mental health score was 46.6 out of 70 for high school students and 46 out of 60 for elementary students. When looking at the children’s dietary habits, only 25% of high school and 28% of elementary school students reported that they ate the recommended five portions of fruit and vegetables each day. About 10% of

Whether it’s to improve mental well-being, grow stronger, or just add variety to your diet, you can’t go wrong by incorporating more fruits and vegetables into your and your family’s diets.


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