Harmonson Law Firm - April 2020

APRIL 2020




W e’re lucky to live in such a beautiful corner of the country. There is no doubt that our great country is filled with so much natural beauty, but the American Southwest is truly the pinnacle of that beauty. April is Keep America Beautiful Month, and it’s the perfect time to get outdoors to take it all in. One place to do this is Big Bend National Park. The drive to get there is several hours, but it’s worth it. We’ve stayed in the town of Lajitas, which is right on the Rio Grande. From there, it’s easy to get to Big Bend and Santa Elena Canyon, and it’s just amazing to see how the Rio Grande cuts through the landscape. Just about everywhere in Big Bend is breathtaking. Santa Elena Canyon is such a dramatic feature. When you go, be sure to take the approximate quarter-mile hike from the mouth of the canyon to the banks of the Rio Grande. Standing barefoot in the cold water and looking up at the enormous cliff walls is an experience I will never forget. If you find yourself heading on a trip to Big Bend, I recommend stopping in the town of Marfa. It’s a curious place where New York hipsters and old Texan cowboys collide. That might sound like a strange way to describe it, but it’s true! It’s a very artistic town, but it’s also isolated. It’s a mix of West Texas charm and big city sensibility. The town is home to the Hotel Paisano, designed by famed El Paso architect Henry Trost. It’s where the movie “Giant” was filmed in 1955, starring Elizabeth Taylor, Rock Hudson, and James Dean. (This was Dean’s last film before his death that same year.) The cast and crew made the Hotel Paisano their home for several weeks while they filmed nearby. Eventually, the hotel renamed several of its rooms after the movie’s stars.

Several years ago, I went on a mule deer hunt near Marfa. I shot a mule deer just 500 yards from the set of another movie, “There Will Be Blood,” which starred Daniel Day-Lewis. While the movie is set in California, they filmed around Marfa. Marfa is clearly something of a hot spot for Hollywood, and it is easy to see why. It’s a beautiful area. At times, it can even be stark and lonely. Another day trip not too far from El Paso is Carlsbad Caverns National Park. It’s another place where the natural beauty is striking. But part of that beauty comes from the drive. U.S. Route 62 is, to me, a quintessential Texas drive. It’s an iconic drive defined by wide-open spaces and ranches that stretch as far as the eye can see. It’s truly where the deer and antelope play. Along that route, you’ll also find the tiny town of Cornudas. It’s little more than a cafe and a service station where you can grab a quick bite or a Coke on your way to and from Carlsbad Caverns. In college, I bought a used car in El Paso, and I was driving it home along Route 62 with my granddad back to Lubbock. The car broke down, and border patrol took us to Cornudas. There, we met a hippie with a 1960s-era Volkswagen van who was more than willing to help. We drove out to my broken-down car, and he hooked up his van for a tow. My granddad and I sat in my car and steered as the hippie towed us all the way back to El Paso. It was in the middle of summer, and we didn’t have air conditioning — it was all-around incredibly dangerous — but we made it to El Paso, and we made a really good memory. I can’t say enough about this fantastic region we live in. You can drive in just about any direction, and it won’t be long until you’re surrounded by nature’s beauty. Until next time, I’ll see you on the road again my friends.

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A car accident can wreck more than your vehicle; it can wreck your quality of life with debilitating injuries and financial hardship. Receiving prompt medical attention after a car accident can be stressful. Many people wonder how their medical care will be paid for and what steps they need to take to ensure they receive the treatment they need to recover. It’s important to know that an insurance company will not pay for medical bills upfront. Funds for medical treatment and other costs are not dispersed until a settlement with the insurance company is reached. This process can take time because clients will need to have medical treatments before a lawyer can make a global settlement demand to the insurance company. One method to keep costs down until your claim is settled is to work out a payment plan with your health care providers. In some cases, you could pay for services with a low monthly rate to avoid having your accounts sent to collections. Once your settlement is paid, the funds from the insurance company can pay off the remainder of your medical costs and reimburse you for the payments you’ve already made. Sometimes, car accident victims will use their health insurance to pay for their injuries. While this can help offset the costs of treatment, using your health SUDO KU WHO PA HOW TO HANDLE MEDICAL BILLS DURING A CAR AC

I t’s hard to imagine kids as anything but carefree, happy, and eager to explore the world around them. However, children experience stress just like adults do, which can severely impact their typically cheerful dispositions. Since April is National Stress Awareness Month, now is an opportune time to familiarize yourself with tools and information that can help you alleviate your child’s stress. Any number of everyday factors can lead to stress, and stress can plague anyone who feels overwhelmed. Toddlers and young children going to day care or school for the first time may experience separation anxiety due to being apart from their parents. Older kids and teenagers may feel mounting social and academic pressure. Even something as simple as overhearing loved ones arguing or seeing a sad news report can add to a child’s stress levels. When a kid is stressed, they will exhibit odd behavior and even undergo physical changes. Depending on your child’s age, watch for mood swings, changes in sleep patterns, headaches, trouble focusing, or withdrawal from the people around them. According to KidsHealth.org, younger children may also pick up habits like twirling their hair or sucking their thumb, while older kids may start to bully others, lie, or rebel. According to KidsHealth.org, good nutrition, proper rest, and healthy attention are great ways to help kids manage their stress. Set time aside each day to talk and spend time with your children; talking about worries will reduce or relieve anxieties. If you know about an upcoming stressful situation, like a school exam or a health checkup, prepare your child by studying with them or talking to them about what to expect. Don’t stop here. For more tools and information regarding stress reduction in children, visit KidsHealth.org or contact your doctor. What are their stressors? How do I know if my child is stressed? Can I help reduce their stress?


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H ave you ever wondered why the turn signal on your car makes the sound it does? The turn signal “click” dates back to the 1930s — and the turn signal itself dates to 1909. A man named Joseph Bell patented the electronic device that made the click possible, and in 1939, Buick began to incorporate the flashing and clicking turn signals into their vehicles. Buick, as it happened, was ahead of its time. Most car manufacturers were slow to use the technology. It wasn’t until the 1950s, when more people were buying cars, that clicking signals became standard in just about every new automobile on the road. Where does the sound come from? Well, in some cars, especially older models, the signals are generated by a thermal-style flasher. Electrical current flows through the flasher, which houses a bimetallic spring. When the turn signal is switched on, a current is sent through the spring, heating it up. The two metals in the spring heat up at different rates. As a result, they bend in a specific way. This bending does two things: It completes the circuit, sending a current to the “blinker” for a split second, and it makes a distinct clicking sound. This process repeats as you sit in traffic waiting to turn (or merge). In newer vehicles, especially those produced from the early ‘90s onward, you’re likely to find an electronic relay-style system. These devices are controlled using a microchip and an electromagnet. The chip regulates the electrical current that runs through the electromagnet. THE SOUND OF TURNING A Brief History of the Clicking Turn Signal Like the older style flasher, this relay completes the circuit to turn on signal lightbulbs for a split second while making the clicking sound. And interestingly enough, this sound is physical. There is a moving part in the relay unit making the noise as a current passes through it. Today, some new vehicles still use the electronic relay, but more vehicles have shifted to devices that are completely chip controlled, which means no moving parts. Instead, the clicking noise is produced electronically through either the driver’s side speaker or a dedicated speaker on the signal control unit itself, depending on the manufacturer. The new technology is not as exciting, but the click remains an important part of our daily driving experience.

insurance can negatively affect settlement payouts due to certain laws in

the state of Texas. If you choose to use your health insurance to pay for medical bills

associated with a car accident, be sure to speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer first. An attorney can help you understand your rights and the legal implications of decisions you make. Harmonson Law Firm works with health care professionals, such as orthopedic surgeons, chiropractors, and imaging specialists, who will provide services upfront so long as they are repaid by a patient’s settlement. Our firm’s attorneys also work to reduce medical costs during the billing process. This can help ensure that a patient’s settlement provides enough money to cover pain and suffering and lost wages.

This article comes directly from the blog at ClarkHarmonsonAttorney.com/blog. Be sure to visit the blog for more insights from Clark!


Impress your family with this festive Easter lamb cake that’s as cute as it is scrumptious!



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2 1/4 cups cake flour 2 1/2 tsp baking powder

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1 tsp vanilla extract

4 egg whites

1/2 tsp salt


1 1/4 cups granulated sugar

1/2 cup butter

1 cup milk

1 lamb-shaped, 3D cake mold


1. Heat oven to 375 F. Coat lamb cake mold with vegetable oil and wipe clean after a few minutes. Then grease again and flour cake mold. 2. In a bowl, sift cake flour, then sift flour again with baking powder and salt. Set aside. 3. In a large bowl, beat sugar and butter together to form a batter. 4. Add flour mixture and milk to the batter alternately. 5. Stir batter until smooth and add vanilla extract. 6. In a separate bowl, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. 7. Fold 1/3 of egg whites into batter mixture, then fold in the remaining whites. 8. Fill cake mold with batter and avoid air pockets. Place the lid on the cake mold, secure it tightly, and place it on a cookie sheet. Bake for 1 hour. 9. Let cake cool completely before decorating with frosting, candy, and edible Easter grass.

915.584.8777 • 3

5505 North Mesa St. Suite 3 • El Paso, TX 79912 WWW.CLARKHARMONSONATTORNEY.COM 915.584.8777


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Wide-Open Spaces

Helping Your Child Manage Stress

Who Pays My Medical Bills During a Car Accident Case?


Easter Lamb Cake

The Invention of the Turn Signal’s ‘Click’


The Best Locations for Spring Blooms

SEE SPRING BLOOM In These Beautiful Locations Spring is here, which means beautiful flowers are finally showing themselves after a long winter. Here are some of the best places in the U.S. to see flower blossoms and welcome the season. natural phenomenon even inspired the creation of the annual Wildflower Festival in midsummer, which features nature walks, art, photography, culinary experiences, and more. For a truly unique experience, you can even ascend the town’s titular Crested Butte to spot some rare alpine sunflowers next to the picturesque West Elk Mountains.

Great Smoky Mountains The Great Smoky Mountains National Park stretches across North Carolina and Tennessee, and while its scenery is beautiful year-round, the park is especially alluring to nature enthusiasts during the spring. Through this season, miles of lady’s-slipper orchids, irises, cardinal flowers, and lilies dot its lush green landscape. It’s dubbed “Wildflower National Park” throughout this time of year, and you can experience it by car or on foot. The park also offers expert-led tours that weave through the flowers during their peak bloom. Crested Butte Crested Butte, Colorado, is best known for its winter sports and summer hikes. But recently it has drawn the attention of flower enthusiasts for its unique pink, orange, and gold alpine wildflowers that appear in the spring. This

Antelope Valley The California Poppy Reserve in Lancaster, California, is a 1,780-acre park that features sloping hills covered with fields of vibrant orange, yellow, and red poppies in the spring. Warm temperatures and heavy rainfall across Southern California during this time of year create a brief period of thick blooms as far as the eye can see. And while the poppies can be enjoyed from the comfort of your car, the best way to experience them is to walk the leisurely Antelope Loop Trail for a breathtaking, up- close adventure. Spring flora is gorgeous and naturally attracts large crowds of people every year. If you plan to visit any of these destinations, just remember that their ecosystems are delicate. Respect park signs, stay on designated trails, and do your part to make sure these flowers return year after year for future generations to enjoy.


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