August 2019 Soto’s Chronicles
Protecting your most valuable asset — your family
FROM THE DESK OF
If you have a child with special needs, you may have to care for that child for the rest of their life. You love your child, but that does not mean this isn’t taxing and difficult at times. It’s a full- time job. It comes with many hurdles you have to overcome. It helps to define your life in ways you never expected. When parents are honest with themselves about the difficulties this presents, it’s important to think about ways to make it easier. A few helpful tips include: Find other parents who also have children with special needs. Join a support group with them. Isolation is a real issue for parents who feel like they just have to take care of their child and having a group can get both you and your child the socialization you need. Take breaks and get assistance. Don’t assume you have to do it all on your own. Maybe you have a spouse who can be the sole caretaker one night a week, for instance, so that you can get out and meet with friends or engage in hobbies. Be grateful for the little things. Take joy in life. A positive mindset, even if you have to intentionally create it, can change the way that you see the world. While these tips can help with your day-to-day obligations, you also want to think about how the care you’re providing will someday come to an end. Your child will still need help and assistance when you can no longer provide it. It’s important to consider all of your options, such as creating a special needs trust. • • •
One of the best cures for a rainy day in the height of summer is a romantic comedy filled with sunshine, sand, and sappy looks. Here’s the litmus test: If everyone has perfect tans, the ocean is in sight, someone flies off to Europe, or any combination of the three, then it’s the one to cure your cloudy mood. The more tropes and cliches, the better. Just grab a big bowl of popcorn, choose one of the movies below, and settle in. SUMMER LOVIN’ 6SummerRom-ComsfortheAges
Starring Freddie Prinze Jr. and Jessica Biel, this 2001 romp is the classic story of “rich girl meets poor boy.” Prinze plays a minor league baseball player who has sworn off women, but one look at Biel’s character, Tenley, changes his mind. Their first kiss happens within 24 hours, and, though baseball threatens to drive them apart, the film wraps up with a classic rom-com airport scene. It’s perfection.
Set on a gorgeous Greek island, this rom-com/musical checks every box on the rainy day litmus test. Designed around a soundtrack of songs from Swedish rock group ABBA, “Mamma Mia” spins the tale of Donna, played by the incomparable Meryl Streep; her daughter, Sophie,
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played by Amanda Seyfried; and their incorrigible gang of gal pals letting loose on the island for Sophie’s wedding. When Sophie secretly invites three of Donna’s old flames to the ceremony with the hope of figuring out which one is her father, things get out of control in a hilarious way.
‘50 FIRST DATES’
It’s always summer on the island of Oahu, where“50 First Dates”is set, even when it’s technically October. In this alternately sad and heartwarming film, Henry, played by Adam Sandler, and Lucy, played by Drew Barrymore, fall in love despite the fact that car accident-induced amnesia wipes Lucy’s memory each day, forcing Henry to win her over again and again. Thanks to the Hawaiian setting, there are plenty of beach scenes to go around.
You’ve never seen Mark Harmon of “NCIS” fame look quite like this. Circa 1987, Harmon plays a handsome yet lazy gym teacher whose plans for a summer in Hawaii are cancelled when he’s forced to teach an unruly group of teens remedial English. When he takes his class on one too many field trips and falls for the history teacher, played by Kirstie Alley, his boss issues an ultimatum: Get all of the teens to pass the big test or get fired. This is less a single chick flick and more a series of them crammed onto one disc (assuming you still use DVDs). In this movie, a group of four high school friends who are being forced to split up for the summer bond through a pair of magical jeans that fits all of them perfectly. In their disparate corners and countries, each of the four — played by Hollywood darlings Blake Lively, America Ferrera, Alexis Bledel, and Amber Tamblyn — finds love and learns a bit about herself. ‘THE SISTERHOOD OF THE TRAVELING PANTS’
‘THE PARENT TRAP’
Before Lindsey Lohan took over the tabloids, she was the adorable freckle- faced redhead who played a set of twins in“The Parent Trap.”Separated at birth by parents who split up, Annie and Hallie meet at summer camp and come up with the brilliant idea to swap plane tickets home. Hilarity ensues as the two girls struggle to live each other’s lives and banish evil stepmother Meredith to get their parents back together. With its unforgettable soundtrack, this timeless rom-comwill hold a place in your heart for years to come.
STAYING ‘COOL’ WITH YOUR CANINE Enjoy the Weather While Keeping Your Pup Comfortable
With all this late-summer sunshine, it’s the perfect time to take your dog out for some fun. And while spending time basking in nature’s beauty can be a great source of fun and exercise for you and your pets, it’s important to keep a careful watch on your dog’s core temperature to prevent heat exhaustion. There are several detectable signs of heat exhaustion that you can watch for, including abnormal lethargy, vomiting, or a brightly colored blue or red tongue. Here are some tips to keep your canine cool this summer. WATER IN ALL ITS FORMS While certain dog breeds thrive in hotter climates, all pups need a little extra care when it comes to staying hydrated during the summer. For starters, always make sure they have ready
access to drinkable water. If you are going on an adventure, consider bringing a collapsible water bowl. If you are doing some backyard chilling, consider filling up a small wading pool with water for your pooch to splash or lounge in. SOME INVALUABLE INVENTIONS There are many contraptions to help you keep your canine cool in the summer heat. Booties to insulate their toes and protect their paw pads from the hot asphalt, cooling vests that reflect sunlight off darker fur, and pressure-activated cooling pads are just a few of the gizmos you can purchase to stave off those scorching temps. The Dog People, a website powered by Rover.com, also recommends making frozen“pupsicles,”a yogurt-based frozen treat that can satisfy doggy cravings while keeping them cool.
TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE While fun water toys and helpful cooling inventions are great, the best thing you can do to keep your dog cool is be careful about when you decide to go outside. Taking your pup out in the early morning or later in the evening, when the sun isn’t at its highest point in the sky, will help keep them cooler in the long run. Additionally, keep in mind that some breeds deal with the heat better than others. If you’re unsure, do a little research to determine your dog’s susceptibility to heat exhaustion. Just because the heat is sizzling doesn’t mean your dog should be! Keep these tips in mind before taking your canine out in the summer sun. They will thank you for it!
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The Right Place at the Wrong Time
A Look at Some Interesting Personal Injury Cases
There is no shortage of crazy cases that come through a court of law, but those revolving around personal injury can be especially surprising. Whether it’s a slip-and-fall accident or something a little more eccentric, there are a million ways to hurt yourself while simply going about your day. The problems arise when it’s determined to be another party’s fault. Let’s take a look at some notably strange cases where bizarre miscalculations led to injuries and ailments. AS BELOW, SO ABOVE Time spent in the restroom is inherently private. We don’t normally talk about it, but that’s not the case for a Pennsylvania woman who experienced a traumatic event during a routine trip to the lady’s room. In 2007, a schlocky horror plot came to life in a building along Philadelphia’s famous Market Street. The culprit was a faulty plumbing system. The woman was inside a restroom stall on the eighth floor, and, as she sat on one of the old toilets customary in the building, pressure building from inside the tank caused a massive explosion that sent her body hurling out
of the stall. You don’t need to know the details of her injuries to understand the extent of her grievances. Some forms of suffering are better left to the imagination, especially if the aggressor was a literal stink bomb. She sued the building’s landlords for anxiety, pain, and medical expenses, but it’s hard to determine which party was truly at fault without more information. IT’S RAINING CATS AND DOLLARS You can’t predict the weather, no matter what your weather app says, but some people tend to forget that. A few years ago, an Israeli weatherman was faced with a lawsuit by a woman who claimed his inaccurate forecast caused her a great deal of suffering. She claimed he misrepresented a particularly harsh day in the forecast, and it encouraged her to wear insufficient layers that left her health to the whim of the elements. As a result, the woman caught the flu from the downpour and missed work for four days. Citing lost income, large medication costs, and tremendous anxiety, she sought reparations from the fraudulent weatherman and was amazingly awarded a four-figure settlement!
Take a Break!
Inspired by CookieAndKate.com
2 1/2 lbs ripe tomatoes; cored, seeded, and cut into 1-inch chunks 1 small cucumber; peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch chunks 1 red bell pepper; cored, seeded, and sliced into ribbons
1 small Vidalia onion, peeled and cubed
1/4 cup basil leaves
1 clove garlic, peeled
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tbsp sherry vinegar
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Directions 1. Place a blender andmediummixing bowl on your workstation. 2. Divide the tomato chunks, cucumber pieces, and bell pepper slices evenly between blender and bowl. Place entire onion in blender. 3. Add basil, garlic, olive oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper to blender. Blend on low, gradually raising speed to high until smooth, about 2 minutes. 4. Add blender contents to bowl andmix until just broken up, about 10–20 seconds. 5. Let mixture sit in fridge for a minimumof 2 hours. Transfer to bowls and serve.
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INSIDE THIS ISSUE From the Desk of DeDe PAGE 1 6 Summer Rom-Coms for the Ages PAGE 1 Staying ‘Cool’ With Your CanineThis Summer PAGE 2 Bizarre Personal Injury Cases PAGE 3 Take a Break PAGE 3 Summertime Gazpacho PAGE 3 How to Best Protect Yourself From Scam Calls PAGE 4 Two of the most common scams are phone scams and robocalls. These calls are incredibly annoying and can trick you out of valuable information if you’re not careful. While it might seem like these scams are inescapable, there are some precautions you can take to avoid their traps. GIVE THEMTHE SILENT TREATMENT. One thing you can do to avoid these fraudulent, time-wasting calls is to simply hang up. If possible, it is best to not answer at all. It’s always good to have a list of numbers you can reference, so you never have to guess who is calling. Think of it as going one step beyond caller ID. In some cases, answering and then hanging up can actually do more harm than good. Answering the phone gives the scammers confirmation that the number works and that they should try again. Once your number is Ring, Ring— It’s a Robot
What You Can Do to Protect Yourself From Phone Scams and Robocalls
confirmed as active, it often gets put on an “active number”list that can then be sold to other scammers who market in these types of phone numbers. If you can’t verify who is calling without picking up, don’t answer. Let it go to voicemail. If it’s important, the person will leave a legitimate message and you can respond afterward. PUT UP SOME DETERRENTS. You can even go a step further and block the calls. Many phone service providers offer call-blocking options, including AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon. You can sign up for this service in-store or on your service provider’s website. Each service costs about $4 per month. There are also a number of call-blocking apps available on Android and Apple devices, but if you subscribe to a blocking service through your phone provider, these apps are unnecessary.
Finally, you can sign up for the Federal Trade Commission’s“Do Not Call”program (DoNotCall. gov). While the Do Not Call program can help cut back on calls, this list is largely ignored by scammers. If you’re getting a ridiculous number of robocalls every day, signing up can offer you some brief respite. Thankfully, Congress is already attempting to fix this problem by making it harder for scammers to call you. But until they are able to pass tough, effective legislation, it is up to us as consumers to remain vigilant and do what we can to keep our personal and financial data safe and secure.
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