SEPTEMBER 2018 THE
GROWINGUP IN GUNCOUNTRY T he I mportance of F irearm S afety T raining COMMUNITY CONSCIENCE
Raising kids can be a challenging endeavor. When Heather and I were married in 2013, Heather agreed to take on not only a husband but two boys, Andrew, 12, and Chandler, 11. The boys are now 16 and 17 years old and face growing up in a world very different than the one Heather and I knewwhen we were teenagers. We are far fromperfect parents, but we do our best. This article 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. Heather and I grew up in homes where guns were just part of the environment. My father was a federal agent with the United States Border Patrol and had to carry a gun for work. Frommy father’s service revolver to his Mini-14, several .22s, and even a musket, guns were ubiquitous in the Foust home. Heather’s father is an avid hunter, and like any self-respecting Montana girl, she grew up killing gophers and learning how to fire everything from a handgun to a shotgun to all sizes of rifles. Guns are part of our culture, and we expect it to be that way for generations of Fousts to come. With this background, it might surprise you to learn that Heather and I do not have a single firearm in our home. We have decided not to have a gun in our home, as the chances of needing to use a gun in self-defense are astronomically slim. In the entire U.S., a nation that has over 300 million firearms, there were only 258 justifiable homicides involving civilians using firearms. This is in stark contrast to the 22,000 people who die annually fromguns, either by an accidental discharge or by committing suicide. Although we have made the decision not to have a firearm in our home, we are keenly aware of the need to educate our two Montana boys about firearms. I attended each and every hunter safety course my boys attended. Let me explain why. RAISING KIDS IN GUN COUNTRY
Nearly 58 percent of households in Montana own at least one gun. Under Montana law, it is legal to carry a loaded handgun in public by the age of 14. Hunter safety courses are available to children in Montana as young as 10 years old. However, sending your kids to the program and“hoping things will go well”is not enough. It is critical that you attend the program with your child. Whether you believe in possessing firearms or not, if you live in Montana, your kids will encounter firearms, and we feel that burying your head in the sand is not an option. Ideally, attendance at hunter safety would not be optional (although it is). It is critical that you knowwhat your kid knows about firearms—andmore importantly, what they do not know about firearms. Ignorance is not an option when it comes to this issue in this state. If you are a transplant from another state and your family did not own a firearm, these classes are a good opportunity to educate yourself on firearm safety.
Here are links to some of the many opportunities you have to educate your children on proper firearmuse and safety:
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Parents often feel pretty antsy when their teens want to date. It’s fun and exciting for the teen, but there are plenty of reasons for parents to worry. But don’t feel hopeless in this situation. Take the initiative to let your child know you’re there for them. Below are a few tips that can help keep your teen safe while respecting their individuality. WHEN YOUR TEEN WANTS TO START DATING
to the American Academy of Pediatrics, teens should be allowed to have one-on-one dates sometime after the age of 16. Dr. Ron Eager, a pediatrician at Denver Health Medical Center, points out that there is an enormous difference between a 14-year-old and a 17-year-old in terms of life experience andmaturity levels.
Open communication between you and your teen can help immensely. When your teen expresses an interest in dating, sit down and talk with them about it in a comfortable environment. It may be a little awkward, but letting your child know they can talk to you about dating will help them feel more at ease. Let your teen know they can always come to you, even if they have something unpleasant or uncomfortable to share.
APPROPRIATE DATE SPOTS
If your teen seems unsure of where to go on a date, suggest some places you feel comfortable with. This is a good way to encourage safe and age- appropriate activities that both individuals can enjoy. Some possibilities include the zoo, a movie, dinner, bowling, ice skating, go-karting, or an amusement park. These kinds of activities encourage a comfortable, fun environment that may help ease nerves for both you and your teen. Creating a comfortable parent-child relationship that encourages a teen to turn to you for help and guidance is the first step toward keeping them as safe as you can.
RULES ON DATING
When your teen starts to date, there’s nothing wrong with setting up a few rules. Putting an age restriction and a curfew in place is a good start. Come up with a time that both you and your teen can agree on. Deciding when your teen should date is a bit more complicated. If you believe your teen shows signs of maturity and you’re comfortable letting themdate, now is a good time to start a conversation about it. According
Need a Personal Assistant to Manage Your Kids’ Crazy Schedules? Try These 3 Tips Instead
trust. You can alternate drivers weekly, which provides the opportunity for you to focus your attention on other priorities—or if you’re lucky, have some freedom. THE RIGHT TOOL FOR THE JOB Technology makes organization easier andmore accessible than ever. By using a tool like a shared calendar, you can coordinate the entire family’s schedule so you never miss a beat. And apps like Mealime and MealBoard give you the ability to whip up food that is cost-effective and delicious.
School has started. Youth sports are in full swing. Work is crazy. Food has become more about necessity than enjoyment. All of this can only mean one thing: Fall has begun. The crazy schedules this time of year canmake it tough for parents to keep their heads on straight; making it through the insanity sometimes feels more like survival than life. But there are tactics you can employ to turn the tide and findmore time for yourself. TAG TEAM There’s no reason to try to do everything on your own. The phrase“It takes a village to raise a child”exists because managing the stressors of life requires help. A great place to start is by establishing car pools with a parent group you
horror movie. Laundry is piling up, food is spoiling in the fridge, and the dust bunnies around the house now have names. Housecleaning is a part-time job in its own right. The only way to stay on top of duties around the house is to work together. A chore chart with clear responsibilities is a great place to start. Whether you have one child or eight, everyone is capable of pitching in. You can have all the organizational abilities in the world, but the best way tomanage life’s madness isn’t by directing day-to-day tasks; it’s by managing stress. Instead of using these tools to control life, look at them as a way to free up time so you can decompress and enjoy the things you love.
TEAMWORK MAKES THE DREAMWORK
While you’re busy trying to rally the troops at soccer practice, the scene at home resembles a
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Parent-Teacher Etiquette to Support Your Child’s Development Involved But Not Overbearing
the last thing they need is the added pressure of concerned parents bearing down on them. If you can approach a teacher from a position of understanding and be willing to give them the benefit of the doubt, you’ll be off to a good start. 2. Show up and keep an open mind. Ask any teacher in the country, and they’ll undoubtedly tell you that one of the best predictors of a child’s success is whether or not their parents make an appearance at parent-teacher conferences. Your engagement should go beyond that. Use the teacher’s preferredmethod of communication to stay in semi-regular contact with them—always ensuring that you keep an openmind about any praise, suggestions, or concerns they have about your child. 3. Teach your child to take responsibility. Aside from leaving your kid completely to their own
Helicopter parents are the bane of every teacher’s existence. With the return of back-to-school season, it’s vital to find a happy medium
devices, one of the worst things you can do is swoop in to solve their problems for them at the slightest hint of adversity. Maybe that D your kid got on their algebra test really was their fault. It’s important to acknowledge your child’s missteps, but you should also try to equip themwith the tools necessary to advocate for themselves. Learning to articulate what’s going wrong or what they need from their teacher will help them to develop positive and effective communication skills. The key is to work together with your child’s teacher without being overbearing. Don’t come in with guns blazing at the first sign of an educational slip. Think of your kid’s schooling as a collaborative effort —maybe one in which you’re a little less involved than the teacher — and you’ll be giving your child the best chance of success.
between the tiger momwho bares her teeth at the smallest setback in her child’s schooling and the laissez-faire parent who is totally disengaged from their kid’s education. Here are a few tips to keep you involved in your child’s educational development while fostering relationships with their teachers in a way that won’t drive all of you up the wall. 1. Be a little empathetic. Teachers are some of the hardest-working people in the world, wrangling the disparate needs of around 25 children day in and day out while attempting to get them to actually learn something. It’s a high- stress, low-paying job. In the midst of grading 300 research papers written by 12-year-olds,
Take a Break!
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
• 1 1/4 pound (2 bunches) Swiss chard, trimmed and halved crosswise 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil 2 large shallots, peeled and chopped 1. In a large skillet, heat olive oil to medium. 2. Once heated, add Swiss chard and sprinkle with carrots and shallots. Put canned tomatoes over chard, add sugar, and season with salt and pepper. 3. Add 1/2 cup water, bring to a simmer. DIRECTIONS • •
1 cup canned crushed tomatoes
2 teaspoons sugar
Salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
4. Partially cover skillet and cook until liquid is nearly evaporated, about 15–20 minutes. 5. Transfer to a large platter and serve.
Solution on page 4
Recipe courtesy of Saveur Magazine
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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
INSIDE THIS ISSUE Kids and Guns PAGE 1 When Your TeenWants to Start Dating PAGE 2 3 Tips to Help Organize Your Crazy Life PAGE 2 The 3 Keys to Parent-Teacher Etiquette PAGE 3 Take a Break PAGE 3 Summer Grilled Halibut PAGE 3 Falsities You’ve Been Told About Jury Duty PAGE 4
SUMMONED TO COURT
Jury Duty Myths
serve jury duty. Many people believe this myth because voting enters you into the jury duty pool, but there are other means by which citizens are chosen. Other ways you’re entered into the pool
There are so many rumors about jury duty that it can be difficult to know which ones are true. Here are three of the most popular speculations, debunked.
ADMITTING BIAS WILL ENSURE YOUR DISMISSAL
include buying a home, paying taxes, and getting a driver’s license. Even if you aren’t registered to vote, you’re still liable to be summoned.
If you admit that you are biased when you serve jury duty, it does not guarantee your dismissal. In fact, a judge cannot dismiss you for being biased — but an attorney can. In addition, attempting to portray yourself as a biased person can put you in a troubling situation. Attorneys and judges have been selecting jurors for a long time and know when someone is lying to them. Your best bet will be to be give honest answers to the questions they ask. NO VOTING, NO JURY DUTY According to another circulating myth, if you aren’t registered to vote, you don’t have to
SERVING JURY DUTY WILL GET YOU FIRED
can submit a file of complaint to the trial court administrator, and they will take care of the rest for you. The system to select jurors has been around for a while, and those involved know what they’re doing. It’s best to go in with an open mind and be completely honest. After all, it is your civic duty to do so.
If you’re worried about getting fired by serving jury duty, you can take a breather. Your employer cannot fire you once you’ve been selected for jury service. In fact, if your boss threatens to fire you for it, they will face the penalties, which include fines and even jail time. Many employers know and understand this, but if yours doesn’t, you
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