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MY UNOFFICIAL SECOND SON IN FREDERICKSBURG
Last September, my family and I headed out to Fredericksburg, Texas, to visit Jordan, my son’s close friend whose story I told you about in last month’s issue. Fredericksburg is a town that’s deeply steeped in U.S. history. We all had a great time exploring, checking out old historical sites, and taking in the local Texan flavor. In the mid-1800s, there was a massive food shortage in Germany. Ordinary people were struggling to survive. In the interest of curbing their countrymen’s suffering (while making some money along the way) a collective of entrepreneurs called the Nobleman’s Society gathered hundreds of German citizens to settle in a new plot of land they had bought in America, right in the middle of Texas. But when the Germans landed on the shore of the Gulf of Mexico, they were short on wagons. One of the higher-ups went forward to investigate the land they had purchased and realized that it was a desert of dirt, rocks, and the somewhat hostile Comanche tribe. On his way back, he found an area of fertile soil, much more desirable than the desolate landscape they had purchased. So he wrote home to the Nobleman’s Society, urging that this was the land that they needed to secure instead. They ceded to his request, and the rest of the travelers made their way across the 120 miles and eventually founded Fredericksburg.
vineyards, the landscape stretching out as far as we could see. Once we arrived, we made our way to Oldtown, the historical district, and got a tour of eight colonial houses in the area. The tour was completely engrossing, seeing the way people lived after they’d uprooted and completely changed their homes and lifestyles. Even the architecture was fascinating. We spent a lot of time in the city amid the local population — the epitome of hard- working folks — taking in the small-town vibe. We wiled away two days with Jordan and his girlfriend, shopping, eating brunch, and checking out the historical sights. The town was great, but for me, it was all about seeing Jordan again. He’s been in our lives for over two years since we supported him with everything we could and sent him on his way. I was deeply impressed with the life he’d made for himself in Texas and all that he’d accomplished already. When I was growing up, I was taught that you should take care of yourself first. After you do that, I was told, you should take care of a family. The last step in the process is to take care of others. I guess Jordan was my “other” who came into my life and needed my help. I’m incredibly proud of him. He’s turned out to be such a great kid. By now, I consider him to be my second son. I’m so glad I got to go to Texas and see him for just a few short days.
As we made our own way to the town, we must have passed half a dozen wide, rolling
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3 FAMILY ACTIVITIES FOR THANKSGIVING
Unless you have a child auditioning for “MasterChef Junior,” you’re probably not going to let the little ones cook the turkey this Thanksgiving. Just because the kitchen might be off limits, though, doesn’t mean you can’t find a few creative ways to make the holiday extra special for your kids. Spice up Thanksgiving with these fun, family-friendly activities. COLORING-BOOK TABLECLOTHS If you have a big family, you are probably familiar with the Thanksgiving tradition of the kids’ table. It may be smaller than the grown-ups’ seating arrangement,
Grab some colored paper circles — or cut them out — and have your children write down things that they are thankful for. A silver Sharpie is great for this. Punch holes in the tops of the circles and run string through them. Tie the other end of the string to a coat hanger or embroidery hoop and hang it from the ceiling. STUFF THE TURKEY GAME Want to get the kids outside so you can get to work in the kitchen? Create a Thanksgiving-themed game for them to play outside while you prep the stuffing and put the turkey in the oven.
but it doesn’t have to be any less special. Turn your kids’ table into a canvas for a colorful, creative dining experience. To do this, use craft or art paper to cover the table. Tape everything down tightly and provide crayons and colored pencils for every place setting. If you want to add some extra holiday spirit, put the drawing supplies in empty cranberry sauce and pumpkin cans. GRATITUDE MOBILES Of course, Thanksgiving isn’t just about delicious food. It’s also about reflecting on the parts of our lives we are grateful for. Teaching kids about gratitude is the most valuable Thanksgiving lesson. Bring that concept to life with a gratitude mobile.
To create a holiday-themed “Stuff the Turkey” game, all you need is a few paper bags. We’ll bet you have some left over from shopping. Use two small bags stuffed with scrap paper to create legs and glue them to a larger bag folded to look like the body of a turkey. Now that you have your turkey, you need some balls to stuff it with. Anything soft and baseball-sized will work, even some balled-up paper. Kids will take turns trying to toss the balls into the turkey, scoring points for every shot made.
“I called Mr. Silva a couple days ago because I was looking for a local lawyer. I needed some personal legal advice, and Patrick Silva took the time to stop what he was doing and the work that he was preparing for a big case the next day in order to hear what I had to ask. He gave me some legal advice, regardless of whether he was working my case or not. I really appreciate the time you took to help me, and I am grateful to know that there are lawyers like you that truly care about people. Thank you for your time. If I need any cases worked on, I know I’m going to Patrick Silva!” –True Pisano “Excellent law firm! I had read over 50 reviews before calling them, and each review was consistent. Patrick Silva took my case, which had plagued me for over 14 years, and he fixed it in a mere few months. I didn’t have much faith in the justice system, but Mr. Silva came through as advertised. I doubt that I’ll ever be in California again, but I wouldn’t hesitate to call on them again. Thanks, Patrick!” –southernmarine25 2 www.willsandtrustlawyers.com | www.beatmydui.com
Shocking Results From My 75K in Big Bear SURPRISE, SURPRISE, SURPRISE
As many of you know, I’ve been training for a 24-hour solo mountain bike race on Oct. 14 and 15. The race is in beautiful Los Olivos, California, located near the Dutch tourist town of Solvang. As I was getting ready for this race, I entered into a 75K race in Big Bear. This 75K was part of the NUE Mountain Bike Series (National Ultra Endurance). The series consists of 15 mountain bike races across 13 states that make up the national championship. Each race ranges from 50–100 miles. For the 75K, I entered the masters class, which is the male, 50- plus category. I came into the race feeling strong, but I got to the race late, and there was a good 40 people in front of me. When the gun went off, we started the race. I started off at my normal pace, and, the next thing you know, I had passed 30 people to get into about 10th place. Eventually, we hit the 5-mile climb up Radford, a 9-degree incline on rough terrain. This year, I cut my climb up Radford by 10 minutes. My best time was 1:17:00 last year. This year, it was 1:07:00.
was in. I just heard my name called, put my bike away,
got some water, and grabbed a bite to eat. When I saw the results, I was surprised. I was No. 1! This was my first podium. I had beaten guys who had come from as far away as Colorado and
Massachusetts! The following Saturday, my legs were sore. On
Sunday, I was a little tired. Then on Monday, I got back to it and trained for the 24-hour race.
Now, what the heck does bike racing have to do with being a lawyer? It’s about building your intestinal fortitude. When you’re getting kicked and you feel like quitting, you just keep pushing. You’ve got to be able pick yourself up, put on your boxing gloves, and get back in the ring to fight for your next client, no matter what. With Sausage BRUSSELS SPROUTS
After we hit the top, it was nothing but a single track back down. When I came down to the finish line, I didn’t know what place I
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Recipe courtesy of InTheKitchenWithKath.com. Looking for an easy, delicious Thanksgiving side dish? This gem requires only a few ingredients. INGREDIENTS
• 1 1/2 pounds Brussels sprouts • 1/2 cup water • Salt and pepper
• 2 tablespoons olive oil • 3 1/3 ounces fresh, hot Italian sausage
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4. When sprouts are just about done, remove cover and raise heat to medium-high. Cook, stirring just once or twice, for a couple more minutes. The liquid should evaporate, and the sprouts should start to brown. 5. Add more salt and pepper to taste. Serve hot or warm. Serves 4.
1. Trim sprouts and cut in half. 2. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add sausage and cook, stirring occasionally, 3–5 minutes. 3. Add sprouts to skillet. Add ½ cup water. Add salt and pepper. Cover and cook 10 minutes or until just tender. Check them periodically and add a bit more water, if necessary.
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Visiting My Unofficial Second Son in Fredericksburg 1 2 3 4 INSIDE THIS ISSUE 3 Family Activities for Thanksgiving Client Testimonials Shocking Results From My 75K in Big Bear Brussels Sprouts With Sausage It’s Payback Time ... With Money Transfer Apps IT’S THE MOST WONDERFUL TIME OF YEAR, when family reunites for meals, festivities, and nostalgia. You get to see loved ones a lot during this special time — sometimes too much. Between family dinners, gifts, and parties, there’s also a lot of money exchanged. Do your relatives always manage to get you to pick up the check with the promise that they’ll “get you next time,” except they never do? If you relate a little too much to “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation’s” family dynamics and are one waiter’s tip away from blowing a fuse, a money transfer app is what you need. Check out the pros and cons of these tools to avoid the awkward conversation and make getting your money back easy. PAYPAL One of the original money transfer sites, Paypal offers a user-friendly platform that thousands of businesses already use. Set up an account in a few steps and Paypal is ready to get you your money. It has a “Request Money” tab to send a friendly reminder to Cousin Joe that you’re waiting on the $50 you footed at Olive Garden. One drawback? If the person you request money from doesn’t
IT’S PAYBACK TIME …
WITH MONEY TRANSFER APPS
VENMO Download Venmo on your phone, and after several account setup steps, you can add friends and send and receive payments. Venmo is fast, but not without cons. For one, there’s an automatic public setting that makes transactions viewable to anyone on Venmo — almost like a Facebook post of who is paying whom for what. You can make this information private; just be sure to change your settings. SQUARE CASH Square Cash functions similarly to Paypal and Venmo, but you don’t have to have an account, which makes it potentially the best option to get procrastinators to send your money. No account, no excuses. The bottom line: While all these money transfer tools can make payments easier, they still don’t guarantee people will follow through. To avoid stress and conflict this holiday season, have conversations upfront about how the bill will be paid, whether it’s taking turns paying the sum or Venmo-ing each other when the check arrives. We all have our phones with us, so encourage tab-averse family members to hit download so they go to dinner with the mindset that they’ll get you this time.
have an account, they’ll have to set one up, which could be a deterrent to already reluctant debtors.
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