SEPTEMBER 2019 THE
Our oldest son, Drew, is just about to leave the nest and head to the University of Montana Western in Dillon, Montana. While it is only 110 miles from Bozeman, the thought of Drew living on his own is still foreign. With this as a backdrop, I begin to wonder if transitioning Drew’s room into an extra office is a bigger issue for me than it is for him. I keep telling myself that a natural and healthy progression takes an adult child from high school and into adulthood. While other parents are doing cartwheels and measuring for new drapes, Heather and I have had some disagreement about how soon is too soon to convert a college kid’s room into something new. The balance between letting your adult child move on into the real world and allowing them the security of having a place to call home can be difficult. While there will be more reminders of Drew in our house than of us in his dorm room, keeping a connection during this transition is important for both parents and their child. Raising kids can be a challenging endeavor. When Heather and I married in 2013, she agreed to take on not only a husband but also two boys: Andrew, 12, and Chandler, 11. The boys are now 17 and 18 years old and face growing up in a world very different from the one Heather and I knew when we were teenagers. We are far from perfect parents, but we do our best. Our newsletter chronicles some of our successes and some of our less-than-stellar moments. We hope you can learn from some of our failures and find some entertainment in the moments we share. BECOMING AN EMPTY NESTER WHAT TO DOWITH YOUR COLLEGE KID’S ROOM
I have read a number of articles that describe many of the feelings that go along with becoming an “empty nester.” I have seen one very consistent theme: Keep your child involved in how much to let go. Although it is your decision what to do with that room, communicating with this new adult is critical to continuing a healthy relationship as that young adult moves on.
One article I came across on the website FamilyLives.org.uk had some very sage advice for parents who are sending kids away.
• Find a new interest. After investing so much into your child or children, you may find yourself with some free time on your hands. Perhaps there’s something you’ve always wanted to try, like taking up Bridge, volunteering for a local charity, or even going back to school yourself and starting a new business venture.
• Get to know your partner again. Some parents find that without their children at home, they need to rebuild their
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relationship with their partner to remember why they married them all those years ago. Schedule time together to do things you both enjoy or set yourself a regular “date night” just for the two of you. Keep in touch. You can still to be close to your child even after they have left home. You should try to maintain regular contact through visits, phone calls, emails, and texts, but you need to also realize that you need to get the balance right so they don’t feel smothered by too much contact. Don’t do it alone. Remember, hundreds of thousands of parents are in the same position as you are now. Talk to the people around you — your friends and partner — who know what you’re going through. If you’re finding it hard to shake the blues, you can visit your GP to talk about how you’re feeling and get some additional support.
• Pat yourself on the back. Raising a child is no easy task, and you should congratulate yourself on your excellent work so far. I suspect this new phase of parenthood is more difficult for parents than it is for young adults. Knowing that Drew will be settling into a dorm room and meeting people who will be lifelong friends helps with this transition. What to do with Drew’s room and when to do it is a conversation we will be having this summer. I suspect it will be harder for me than for him. For those of you who have gone through this phase, I am open to any suggestions you may have on how to successfully transition. I am incredibly proud of Andrew and what he has accomplished thus far. I am very much looking forward to seeing him develop into the type of adult I just know he will become. GO DAWGS!
- Lucas Foust
IS YOURCHILD BEINGBULLIED? What You Can Do to Help
A new school year is a prime opportunity for kids to make new friends among their classmates. Unfortunately, kids also form connections during the school year that aren’t always positive, and many children become the targets of school bullies. If you suspect your child is being bullied, there are a few things you can do to help. KNOW THE SIGNS Kids usually don’t open up about being bullied right away. However, there are some common signs that your child is being harassed. Here are a few of them: • If they’re refusing to go to school or ride the bus, they may be dreading their bully. • If they’re rushing to the bathroom after school, it may indicate that they’re being bullied in the bathroom, which is a common tactic bullies use to avoid teachers. • If their grades suddenly change, it may be the result of constant harassment. • Anxious or depressed moods can be the result of bullying as well.
If you spot one or more of these signs, it’s time to talk to your child about what’s happening to them at school.
LISTEN When your child does open up, the best thing you can do is listen. It can be tempting to try to give them advice or question the way they handled the situation, but doing this can give your child the impression that it’s their own fault they are being bullied. Let them tell you the whole story, without judgment, and then help them come up with ideas on what to do next. FINDING THE RIGHT SOLUTION Once you’ve been informed that your child is being bullied, you should inform teachers as soon as possible. Apart from that, there are several ways you can help your child to deal with bullies, so talk to them about what approach they would be most comfortable with, such as de- escalation strategies or a buddy system with their friends. As with most conflicts, the sooner you handle the situation, the better.
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WHAT HAPPENED IN REED SPRINGS?
How a Small Town Went Bankrupt Over a Pothole
In 2002, the quaint town of Reed Springs, Missouri, declared bankruptcy. The hard decision came after the town was forced to pay $100,000 to Sally Stewart, a woman who sued Reed Springs after she tripped over a pothole during a shopping trip. News of a greedy woman ruining a small village tomake a quick buck sparked outrage across the country. But Stewart wasn’t the real villain of this story. A little digging into this case reveals a much deeper conspiracy. Stewart had been visiting Reed Springs in 1998 when she tripped on a pothole hidden beneath some overgrown grass on the sidewalk. But this was no small stumble. Stewart tore two ligaments in her ankle and had to undergo surgery. To help
pay for the medical bills, Stewart, who’d never sued anyone before, initially filed a personal injury lawsuit against the owners of the store in front of the pothole. However, the Missouri Court of Appeals determined the city of Reed Springs was liable for Stewart’s injuries. The court ordered Reed Springs to pay Stewart $100,000, over half the city’s annual budget. Despite the high price tag, in normal circumstances, this verdict wouldn’t have forced Reed Springs to declare bankruptcy because the town’s insurance would have covered the bill. Unfortunately, at the time of Stewart’s accident, the mayor of Reed Springs was a corrupt man named Joe Dan Dwyer.
Dwyer left office while being investigated for insurance fraud, child pornography, statutory rape, witness bribery, and perjury, and he was later sentenced to seven years in federal prison. Among his many indiscretions, Dwyer also let the town’s insurance policy lapse. Reed Springs didn’t have insurance when Sally Stewart got hurt, which is why they had to write a check out of their own budget and ultimately declare bankruptcy. In this case, what started as a simple pothole accident quickly unveiled the lasting damage of an unscrupulous politician. Perhaps this case serves as reminder about why it’s important to vote in local elections.
Take a Break!
CLASSIC APPLE CRISP
Inspired by Food Network
5 lbs Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and chopped
3/4 cup all-purpose flour 1/3 cup brown sugar 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
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1/4 cup pecans, finely chopped 3 tbsp all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
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6 tbsp chilled butter, cut into pieces
2 tbsp maple syrup 1 tbsp lemon juice
1/4 cup pecans, coarsely chopped
1. Heat oven to 350 F. 2. In a mixing bowl, mix all filling ingredients together. Transfer to individual serving ramekins. 3. In a different mixing bowl, combine flour, sugar, cinnamon, and salt for the topping. Mix in butter until it forms lumps roughly the size of a pea, then stir in pecans. Sprinkle topping over filling. 4. Bake for 35–40 minutes, let stand for 10 minutes, and serve.
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406-587-3720 • 3
Foust Law Office
PRST STD US POSTAGE PAID BOISE, ID PERMIT 411
www.lucasfoustlaw.com 406-587-3720 Fax: 406-879-4400
3390 South 30th Avenue Bozeman, MT 59718
With Oktoberfest right around the corner, you may start hearing some of these fun sayings:“I don’t give a Schnitzel,”“Keep calm, and Prost on,” or“You can’t buy happiness, but you can buy beer.”But what exactly is Oktoberfest, and why do so many people celebrate it? Here are some fun facts about it. ROYAL BEGINNINGS Oktoberfest is deeply rooted in Munich culture. It all started with the marriage of Crown Prince Ludwig and Princess Therese von Sachsen- Hildburghausen on Oct. 12, 1810, and the citizens of Munich were invited to attend the celebration just outside the gates of the city. The celebration’s main attraction was horse racing, which was also a staple event for the next year but has since been removed from the current celebrations. In 1811, a large agricultural fair was mixed into the event, and in 1817, beer pubs and performers were added. Perhaps one of the INSIDE THIS ISSUE What to Do With Your College Kid’s Room PAGE 1 How to Respond to School Bullies PAGE 2 A Surprising Reason for Bankruptcy PAGE 3 Take a Break PAGE 3 Classic Apple Crisp PAGE 3 Origins of Oktoberfest and Popular Events PAGE 4
ROOTS OF OKTOBERFEST Oktoberfest Outside Munich
most famous events during Oktoberfest is the costume parade, where men and women alike dress in old-fashioned garb and march through the streets in honor of Ludwig and Therese’s marriage. The rest you could say is history, or geschichte! OKTOBERFEST IN … CANADA? While Oktoberfest in Munich traditionally starts on Sept. 22, the Canadians celebrate during the week of Oct. 6–14. The twin cities Kitchener- Waterloo host the largest Oktoberfest outside of Munich, boasting more than 700,000 people in attendance each year. The event has a musical
concert dubbed“Rocktober”and a dog parade known as“Dogtober.”Even though the Ontario area is becoming more and more popular, you can still enjoy Oktoberfest on a budget. You can find hotels in the area and surrounding cities for well under $100 per night. Not everyone can make their way to Munich or even Canada to celebrate the fantastical event, but most areas will have something going on. If you love German culture, do a little bit of digging, and you’re sure to find an Oktoberfest event near you!
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