DiBartolomeo Law Offices - May 2018

Makin’ It Better NEWSLETTER

May 2018

Oregon Workers’ Compensation | Personal Injury | Social Security Disability

1139 Exchange St., Astoria, OR 97103 • 503-325-8600 • JoeDiBartolomeo.com



Create an ‘Unwind Hour’ It may seem like there’s never enough time, which is why you have to make it. For some families, the hour after school is the best time to engage with each other. For others, bedtime might be a good chance to talk and catch up. Either way, make that time every day. Mediator and co-parenting expert Polly Tatum recommends setting aside time after school to connect with your kids. “When kids come home, put all electronic devices away for an hour and communicate with your children,” Tatum says. “Ask them what the best part of their day was and what they learned. Try to ask probing questions, and if one topic doesn’t pique their interest, move on. Really try to engage for the next hour.” Encourage Questions “Why is the sky blue?” “How are mountains made?” “Why do giraffes have long necks?” You might not always know the answer, but as your child experiences the world, they’re going to ask you questions. Encourage those questions, and know you don’t always have to have the answer. Promote your child’s development and problem- solving skills by letting them explore those questions and guiding them to — instead of giving them — the answers. Embrace Emotions We sometimes need time to process our emotions, and kids have to learn how to

When you imagine your kids as adults, what do you see? Do you imagine that your lives intersect? Are you still close with them? That time is still years away, but if you hope to have a long-lasting relationship with your kids, now is the time to start building it. From birth to age 2 is when the most critical social development occurs in humans, and for the social part of the brain to grow, your child needs your attention. But even after that, it’s important to continue cultivating your relationship. However, it’s not just about the quantity of time you spend together. According to the Mental Health Foundation, “Parents and carers will have a relationship with their child, but it is the quality of the relationship that is important.” Hug to Build Trust There’s one little gesture that can go a long way — a hug. An article in Psychology Today recommends 12 hugs or other physical connections a day. Yes, it’s that simple; hug each other more. Remember how good a hug feels? Hugging is one of the simplest ways to demonstrate affection and build trust. According to Dr. Srini Pillay, it’s because the embrace helps deactivate the fear center of your brain — the amygdala — and stimulates oxytocin, which increases trust. Here are five ways you can foster that relationship, starting today.

do that too. Let your kids know it’s okay by helping them through their emotional outbursts. It might be best to have these conversations after an outburst rather than during it. Talking to them about how they’re feeling and why they behaved the way they did will help them let go of any negative emotions they’re hanging on to and learn how they can react differently in the future. Have a Tea Party Playtime is one of the ways young children develop relationships. Through play, they learn to communicate and express themselves. It’s valuable time for kids, and you can grow closer to them by engaging in it. When was the last time your kids begged you to be a princess at their tea party? It might feel silly, but tapping into that imaginative side will benefit both of you. Dr. Kate Eshleman suggests letting your child take the lead. “It’s important to remember to let your child guide the activity,” she says. “Adults rule so much of children’s lives. So let them take the lead on decisions during play.” Children develop habits and learn from you, and one of the most important ways they do that is by interacting with you. Make time for it. You may think you have a lifetime to spend with your children since they’re little, and day-to-day needs can take precedence over relationship-building. Don’t let that happen. Start growing and nurturing those precious relationships today.

The Di Bartolomeo Law Office, P.C. 1139 Exchange Street | Astoria, Oregon | 503-325-8600 | www.JoeDiBartolomeo.com

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GET MORE OUT OF GAME NIGHT Use Board Games as a Teaching Tool

Consult the Rules Whether you’re new to a game or an old pro, it’s worth spending some time going over how the game is played. Not only will this help you teach your kids how to play a new game, but these rules also provide valuable insight into the skills the game teaches. Even games of pure chance, like Chutes and Ladders, can teach young kids motor skills, a sense of fair play, and what good sportsmanship looks like for both winning and losing. Does the game have rules for trading among players, like Monopoly or Settlers of Catan? These sorts of games are a great way to teach social skills. Does it offer multiple paths to victory, like Chess or Tokido? These games teach strategy and critical reasoning. Games like Pandemic require players to work together, teaching valuable teamwork and leadership skills. Teach by Example While gameplay itself can be a great teacher, being a role model for your children during game night is the most important thing you can bring to the table. No matter their age, showing your kids how to lose gracefully, win magnanimously, and have fun no matter what are skills they will carry with them the rest of their lives.

In this digital age, having a family board-game night every few weeks is a novelty. Putting away the electronics and having fun face-to-face with your kids is reason enough to make this a family tradition. But did you know that board games can also teach your kids valuable life skills? Here’s the best way to facilitate this learning as a parent. Find the Right Game for the Right Age It’s important to find games that fit your children’s abilities. Complex rules, small pieces, or mature content can make some games inappropriate for young kids. The first thing you should do is check the recommended age range on the packaging. This will help you find the best match for your kids.


I Didn’t Order This on My Sandwich Have you ever ordered a sandwich, only to take a bite and find it has a wrong ingredient? Well, one New York man experienced an extreme version of this situation when he stopped at a local Subway. Instead of having an unwanted piece of meat or vegetable sneak into his sandwich, he bit in to find a serrated knife. Unconvinced of its protein value, the plaintiff filed a suit for $1 million, claiming the sandwich made him sick. The case would later settle for $20,000. I’m Suing Myself for Damages While in prison, a man came up with an idea to sue the person responsible for the grand larceny charges that put him behind bars. Here was the only catch: The person he deemed guilty was, in fact, himself. He drew up a suit for $5 million because his religion forbade him from drinking, and he had

Not every personal injury case is a tooth- and-nail fight for what is right. In some cases, they are downright awkward or even entertaining. For instance, check out these three examples. Pit Stop Sometimes, you just get a craving for a snack. It’s entirely understandable — in most cases, at least. An ambulance driver in Texas illustrated one occasion where it’s probably not. An injured young man was strapped down in the back of an ambulance riding to the hospital when the operator had a hankering for some donuts. He pulled the vehicle over at a gas station, grabbed his dozen tasty confections, and proceeded as if nothing happened. After dropping the patient off, the ambulance driver was promptly fired, but that didn’t stop him from filing a civil suit in court. The case never made it to court, and the plaintiff may now think twice before stopping for a snack.

forced himself to drink, which led to him committing the crime. You might think this sounds pointless, until you learn that the plaintiff insisted the public should pay the amount because he was a warden of the state. The case was tossed out as quickly as he was tossed in prison.

The Di Bartolomeo Law Office, P.C. 1139 Exchange Street | Astoria, Oregon | 503-325-8600 | www.JoeDiBartolomeo.com

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As technology rapidly advances, it tends to outpace much of the regulation that governs it. A new idea can race so far ahead that it almost turns the industry into the Wild West. The most recent example of this is of self-driving cars. Companies like Uber, Lyft, and Tesla have been making headlines the last couple years by releasing technology previously only seen in science fiction. These vehicles give drivers the opportunity to take a break from maneuvering their car and have it take over the driving for them. This technology opens up a controversy that begs the question, are computers safer than humans? One common argument associated with this issue is that airplanes use autopilot all the time, and they rarely run into problems employing it. If this feature is safe for the

On the ground, you have traffic, intersections, and in the case of a recent accident, pedestrians.

An accident involving a self-driving Uber car claimed the life of a person crossing the street with their bike. In theory, the accident should’ve been prevented by the car’s safety technology. This state-of-the-art invention relies on a concept called LIDAR (light detection and ranging systems) that places a sensor on top of the vehicle, as well as on its sides and front. This technology uses laser beams, light, and radar to detect surroundings and activate any immediate changes that need to occur, such as breaking. While it’s unclear where the malfunction occurred, it is evident that the car did not detect the pedestrian it collided with at 40 mph. This caused Uber to recall their

mass transit of air travel, it should be good enough for drivers on the ground, right?

fleet and suspend all self-driving vehicles until they can pinpoint the issue. But the lack of a driver doesn’t inhibit the blame from falling on someone. Preventable accidents deserve justice. At DiBartolomeo Law, that justice is precisely what we seek.

Not necessarily. Airplanes only use autopilot when they are at cruising altitude, with just the clouds and horizon accompanying them.

There are almost infinitely fewer variables in the air.

If you’ve been in a crash of any kind, reach out to us today to get the justice you deserve.


If you want to be the hit of this year’s Memorial Day cookout, don’t overlook the star power of a well-made side dish. These smoky, tangy grilled potatoes will be the talk of the party. The best part is how easy they are to prep and make!


• 2 pounds baby potatoes, halved • 1/4 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil • Juice of 1/2 lemon • 1/2 packet ranch seasoning

• Ranch dressing for drizzling • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives • Bacon bits (optional) • Salt and pepper to taste




1. Heat grill to medium. In a large pan, toss potatoes with olive oil, lemon juice, and ranch seasoning. Season generously with salt and pepper. 2. Skewer potatoes. (If using wood skewers, be sure to soak in water an hour before


grilling.) Grill until tender and lightly charred, about 15 minutes. 3. Drizzle with ranch and garnish with chives and bacon bits.

Inspired by delish.com

The Di Bartolomeo Law Office, P.C. 1139 Exchange Street | Astoria, Oregon | 503-325-8600 | www.JoeDiBartolomeo.com

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503-325-8600 JoeDiBartolomeo.com


1139 Exchange St. Astoria, OR 97103

What’s Inside


5 Ways to Cultivate Your Relationship With Your Kids


What Board Games Can Teach Your Kids

Check Out These Wild Lawsuits


The New Wave of Self-Driving Cars

Grilled Ranch Potatoes


Kitchen Cleaning Secrets


We’ve all walked into our kitchens, looked at the dishes stacked high in the sink, and asked, “Is it better to throw those in the dishwasher or wash them by hand?” The dishwasher would certainly save you some time, but many people believe that washing dishes by hand uses less water and electricity. In reality, however, washing your dishes by hand is one of the worst things you can do for both the planet and your wallet. Dishwashers use less water than washing by hand. A study conducted in Europe found that individuals who wash dishes by hand tend to use 27 gallons of water to clean just 12 place settings. Meanwhile, modern dishwashers only use 6 gallons of water, and Energy Star appliances use as little as 4 gallons during their wash cycle. The Environmental Protection Agency determined that using a dishwasher instead of washing by hand

can save 5,000 gallons of water and $40 in utility costs a year.

aren’t enough to sanitize your sponge, which is left damp next to your sink after each use. Have you ever noticed that stagnant sponge smell? That’s bacteria growing. And when you wash your dishes by hand, you rub that bacteria all over your plates and silverware. Yum. If you have just a single plate or cup, you obviously don’t want to run them through the dishwasher alone; that would be incredibly wasteful. But the drawbacks of washing by hand are too great to ignore. The best option is to wait

It’s not just about water! Unless you have incredibly thick dishwashing gloves, you can’t properly clean your dishes by hand. Dishwashers heat water to around 145 degrees Fahrenheit to ensure your dishes are disinfected. Even if the water from your sink could get that hot, you wouldn’t want to stick your hand in it. Which brings us to the science experiment that is your kitchen sponge. Dr. Philip Tierno, a clinical professor in the microbiology and pathology departments at NYU Langone, determined that your

until your dishwasher is full, then start up the washing cycle. All your dishes will be clean and disinfected, and you’ll use less water in the process.

kitchen sponge is the single dirtiest

item in your house. Soap and water

The Di Bartolomeo Law Office, P.C. 1139 Exchange Street | Astoria, Oregon | 503-325-8600 | www.JoeDiBartolomeo.com

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