Atlanta Divorce Law Group - December 2022


December 2022

The Process Starts With a Calendar! HOW TO AVOID BURNOUT IN 2023 678-203-9893

Every December, I buy a giant paper calendar and carry it home to my dining room table. When the kids fall asleep, I pop a bucket of popcorn, tear out all the pages of the calendar, spread them over the tabletop, and get to work planning out the upcoming year. This process is my secret to avoiding burnout and guilt from now through next December. I spend two weeks blocking out all of our family’s vacations, birthdays, and home improvement projects. Once those boulders are in place, I hang the calendar sheets in a closet, and Hisham and I reverse-engineer our schedules. We sit down together and ask ourselves, “Okay, what do we need to do for our jobs, each other, and the kids to make sure we can take this time off next year?” The combination of calendaring our year and discussing our strategy has been a total game- changer for us. The plan removes all of our emotional excuses and feelings of guilt. When it’s time to take a trip or put work on hold for a birthday party, we don’t have to stress about leaving a mess behind at home or the office because we’ve been proactive about cleaning it up.

I know I made this ritual sound easy, but a lot of work goes into planning out an entire year for a family! If you want to try my strategy, you need to be brutally honest with yourself. Soul search to find out how many breaks you actually need to stay sane, how you really want to spend your time off, and what you need to do in advance so you can relax and enjoy yourself. It’s also important to give yourself the gift of saying “no” to things you don’t want to do. Just because your family invites you to Mexico doesn’t mean you have to go — especially if you’d rather vacation in the mountains than on the beach! If you’re a divorced parent who is still in communication with your former spouse, calendaring your year this way is even more vital. You will do your ex (and yourself!) a huge favor if you hand them a list of the dates you’ll be out of town, the dates you’d want to take the kids on vacation, and any dates you’d like to swap custody. Having this list ready in January helps to prevent communication breakdowns and last-minute requests. You might even inspire your ex to create a calendar, too! (This strategy can also protect you if you don’t have the best relationship with your ex. You can use your list to prove that your requests for swaps and vacation time were not part of a tit-for-tat argument.) A lot of people take vacation reactively: They burn themselves out, then realize they need a vacation to recover from overwork. Don’t let that happen to you this year. Instead, Google the closest office supply store and buy yourself a giant calendar! –Sara Khaki

“If you want to try my strategy, you need to be brutally honest with yourself.”



Find the Courage to Divorce — and Move On! 2 VIRTUAL EVENTS YOU NEED THIS SEASON

feelings and discuss your worries with peers under the guidance of Kathleen Shack, the founder and CEO of Family Solutions Counseling, LLC. Kathleen is an expert at handling the stress of divorce and child custody. If you still need closure, visit the registration link on this page today to sign up. CONSIDERING DIVORCE (COMPLIMENTARY WEBINAR) When: Thursday, Dec. 15, at 6:30 p.m. Register: our‑seminars Do you have a friend or family member who has confided in you that they’re thinking about divorce? Maybe they’ve been fighting with their spouse over money, struggling to divide household duties and child care, or just don’t feel the “spark” anymore. If this sounds familiar, your friend might benefit from attending our Considering Divorce webinar.

Our complimentary divorce support groups and seminars are available online! Register for these upcoming events to gain knowledge, resources, and emotional support that will help you feel empowered while you go through major life changes. HAPPILY EVER AFTER DIVORCE SUPPORT GROUP MEETING (VIRTUAL SUPPORT GROUP) When: Saturday, Dec. 10, at 10 a.m. Register: ever-after-divorce-support-group The holidays are for making precious memories with your family and friends — not stressing over unanswered questions still lingering from your divorce. If you’ve found yourself focusing on the past rather than the present this season (or know a friend in that situation), our Happily Ever After Divorce Support Group can help. This group was designed to help people going through divorce find closure and move forward. At the monthly meetings, you can explore your

spouse to their mixed feelings. During the webinar, our team of experts will help them decide whether divorce is the best choice for them, walk them through the process, and prepare them for the financial and emotional concerns ahead. Share the link on this page with your friend today to help them choose the best path for their future. Here at ADLG, we’re not letting COVID-19 slow us down. Sign up for these virtual events to get the information and support you need without leaving home.

This webinar is complimentary, and they can join online from anywhere without alerting their


As regularly as Rudolph does, the Grinch appears on our television screens every December. Despite his negative attitude and nefarious intentions, the protagonist of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” remains a family favorite more than 60 years after the animated TV special first aired. The Grinch’s transformation into a cultural icon began with a 1957 children’s book. Author Dr. Seuss had recently experienced great success with “The Cat in the Hat” and was a hot commodity. He published “How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” later that same year, and the black-and-white book was an instant smash. The story might have ended there if Dr. Seuss had his way.

Dr. Seuss was protective of his creations and didn’t trust them in anyone else’s hands, but his filmmaker friend, Chuck Jones, eventually persuaded him to reconsider. Still, the story required some changes. Jones assigned the Grinch his signature green color, and the Grinch’s dog, Max, was given a more prominent role to increase the special’s runtime. But the songs were the most important of all. The TV special contains nine total musical numbers, the most famous featuring lyrics only Dr. Seuss could have written. “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch” is a hilariously clever song and a highlight of the program. The filmmakers also secured a big win in the voice talents of horror movie legend Boris Karloff, who provided an alternatingly sneering and tender tone to the production. Thanks to its full animation technique featuring 25,000 drawings, Variety says “The Grinch” may have been the most expensive television special made until that time. Later, Hollywood upped the ante with a live-action adaptation in 2000 and an animated full-length film in 2018. Both movies were box office successes, but neither has overtaken the 26-minute TV special as our favorite way to enjoy the Grinch. Why does the Grinch endure? Dr. Seuss based the character on himself, so it may be that there’s a little bit of the Grinch in all of us. Unlike that other well-known holiday-hater Ebenezer Scrooge, he gives those who aren’t full of Christmas cheer a favorable mascot. The Grinch’s wild schemes and comical complaints are more fun than menacing, and his story produces a reliably happy ending. As its greatest gift, an annual viewing can leave even the most hardened Grinch feeling as if their own heart has grown a size or two.


Listen to the new podcast from ADLG’s Sara Khaki and Shawna Woods!

Happily Ever After Divorce


TRAVEL-WORTHY CHRISTMAS TREES Lighting Up Life One Pine Needle at a Time As the holiday season approaches, the twinkling lights and spectacular Christmas tree attractions are always a must-see! Here are the best travel destinations to catch a glimpse of one of the pillars of the holidays. THE ROCKEFELLER CENTER TREE IN NEW YORK CITY The Rockefeller Center tree is located just west of 5th Avenue from 47th through 51st streets in New York City and dates back to the Depression era, with the first tree placed there in 1931. This beloved tourist attraction draws thousands yearly with its dazzling lights and grand scale. To even be considered a contender for this role, a tree must be at least 65 feet tall and 35 feet wide! THE NATIONAL CHRISTMAS TREE IN WASHINGTON, D.C. This American favorite has long been a tradition. Every year, the ceremony begins with live performances by musical artists, and an annual highlight is when the president delivers a message of peace. President Calvin Coolidge was the first president to light the National Christmas Tree in 1923. The tree was 48 feet high and decorated with 2,500 red, white, and green electric bulbs. A local choir and a quartet from the U.S. Marine Band performed as the tree was lit. THE COEUR D’ALENE RESORT TREE IN IDAHO Also known as the World’s Tallest Living Christmas Tree, this grand fir holds the record at 162 feet tall. It is festively decorated with more than 40,000 lights that twinkle in time to the music of “Jingle Bells,” and the tree is crowned with a 10-foot-wide star! THE BILTMORE CHRISTMAS TREE IN NORTH CAROLINA This majestic 55-foot Norway spruce tree is in front of the Biltmore Estate and lit as guests make their way down the path of luminaries. With ornaments and miles of garland, this tree is selected for the Banquet Hall each year for guests from all over to see. Some are lucky enough to live near or in a city with a magnificent tree, but if you don’t, consider traveling to one of these locations to enjoy the holiday with your loved ones.

Even the most amicable divorce will turn your life upside down — especially your living situation. If you and your partner live together, one of you needs to face the prospect of moving

“I have had the privilege of working with ADLG on several occasions with my clients. I cannot say enough about the professionalism and dedication of everyone who works there. I have also gotten nothing but positive feedback from my clients about their experiences with their legal team. Their compassion and care for what their clients are going through is very rarely found, and I would not hesitate to recommend them.” –Beau V. “It was a pleasure working with Atlanta Divorce Law Group on an inter- jurisdictional matrimonial matter. Their lawyers are intelligent, strategic, and attentive to detail, and their support staff is helpful and prompt. I highly recommend this firm for your family law needs.” –Alexandra H. What Our Partners Are Saying! out and finding a new home, while the other has to figure out how to keep paying the bills of your current house. Neither of these situations is ideal, but Bay Equity Home Loans can help with both! Bay Equity is a full-service mortgage lender and one of ADLG’s trusted partners. They can help you with a loan if you need one to purchase a new home, whether you’re a first-time buyer or have purchased a home on your own in the past. They’re also experts in refinancing and reverse mortgages, two solutions that could help inject extra cash into your budget. If you need a home loan or want to refinance with Bay Equity, we recommend working with Travis Evans. You can reach him today by calling 404-713-8662 or emailing

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To get in the holiday spirit this season, consider making a family trip to your local theater. There are a surprising number of benefits to seeing a play in person. 5 Reasons To See a Play This Season THE THEATER IS CALLING YOUR NAME 1. You’ll support your local economy. Theater companies are almost always local organizations, and many of them are nonprofits. That means the money you spend on your tickets will go into the pockets of the actors and/or right back into the company to bring more productions to the community. 2. Your kids could discover an interest in the arts. Your children might have a passion for acting or stage design. They’ll never know unless they see both firsthand. 3. You’ll provoke family discussions. Chatting about the play with your family during intermission and the drive home will help you learn more about each other and forge stronger bonds. What did your kids enjoy about the plot? Which character did your spouse identify with most? Are there any plot holes or unanswered questions that are bothering them? 4. You’ll boost your family’s literary knowledge. A study from the University of Arkansas Department of Education Reform found that students remembered

more about stories like “A Christmas Carol” after watching them as plays than they did after watching movies or even reading the original books. Exposing your kids to the work of Shakespeare and Dickens at the theater is a great way to help them get ahead in their studies. 5. Your kids will develop their tolerance and empathy. The same study out of Arkansas found that students who attended the theater scored higher on tolerance and empathy tests. Watching live helped them identify and relate to the emotional turmoil of the characters. This winter, check your local theaters for holiday-themed productions like “A Christmas Carol,” “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” and “Miracle on 34th Street.” You’ll bring your family closer and embrace the holiday spirit one curtain call at a time.

Save Your Friends From Financial Infidelity How to Spot the Signs and Take Action

WHAT IS FINANCIAL INFIDELITY? Financial infidelity is a lack of transparency between romantic partners when it comes to expenses, spending, liabilities, assets, and other things related to money. It’s also the rot hidden at the center of thousands of marriages. No one likes to admit they have money issues, so this can be a sore subject to discuss with friends and family. However, financial infidelity can ruin a person’s credit and financial independence. If you know someone who might be experiencing financial infidelity, an intervention could save their marriage and/ or ensure they’ll be happy and secure later in life.

• Your friend confided in you about finding hidden assets, bank accounts, or bills their spouse tried to hide. • Your friend isn’t “allowed” to have their own money, credit cards, etc. — everything is controlled by or approved through their spouse. Financial infidelity tends to be more obvious around the holidays. It could be another red flag if your friend and their spouse are fighting over spending on presents, vacations, etc. WHAT CAN I DO TO CHANGE THINGS? If you think your friend or family member is a victim of financial infidelity, the best thing you can do for them is to quietly share Atlanta Divorce Law Group’s phone number (678-203-9893) and website ( .) Then, encourage your loved one to book an appointment with us. We’ve helped hundreds of people in this situation. We can share strategies to help them minimize or eliminate financial infidelity or help them start the divorce process to escape their situation and find independence.

WHAT RED FLAGS SHOULD I LOOK FOR? When trying to spot financial infidelity, look for these signs of abuse.

• Your friend and their spouse regularly fight over finances (ex. how much money to spend on the kids’ school, whether gambling is okay, etc.). • Your friend doesn’t know how much their spouse makes or how much money they have in the bank as a couple, and their spouse refuses to tell them. • Your friend has no control over their household finances and/or doesn’t understand them — even though they want to.


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