Perez Halpern_English May 2018

301.476.1020 •

May 2018

MY MOM’ 'S LIFE PHILOSOPHY My mom had a life philosophy about paying it forward. She hosted a weekly radio show, and her signature signoff was, “Remember to commit a random act of kindness.” It’s something that has always stuck with me. as a student’s budget allowed — and we often had leftovers. We asked the restaurant to pack them up, and on our way home, we offered them to someone outside who was asking for money. Commit Random Acts of Kindness

An act of kindness could be as simple as seeing someone in the grocery store who is short a couple dollars for their bill and giving them the change to cover it. Or when you’re at Starbucks or Dunkin’ Donuts, let the cashier know that you’d like to pay for the coffee of the person behind you. It doesn’t even have to be a stranger; you could perform a random act of kindness for a friend or family member. To my mom, the important thing was looking for those opportunities to pay it forward. Now, when I’m driving with my son in the area where we live, we notice people standing on corners asking for money. We offer them granola bars, nuts, or whatever we happen to have in the car. Unfortunately, my son didn’t get to meet my mother, so I want to instill some of her values in him. Paying it forward is the best one I know. Speaking of Jacob, he was eager for baseball season to start. We offered him the opportunity to play a team sport this year, and baseball is the one he chose. Some of his friends played T-ball last year, and I think he decided it looks fun. He’s been waiting for the weather to warm up enough so he can go outside more and practice. He’s totally excited, and we can’t wait to watch him learn and play. We’re all looking forward to warmer weather, and I’m sure you are too! With Memorial Day and summer approaching, it’s a time when we enjoy more outdoor gatherings and barbecues. Inside this edition, we share a few tips for staying safe while you’re participating in these summer activities.

As a kid, I saw my mom carry out this philosophy around town when people asked for money. She’d tell them, “I don’t have money to give you, but if you want to come into Burger King (or whichever restaurant was closest) with me, I’ll buy your meal.” She taught everyone around her that you’re never too busy to spend an extra few seconds smiling and greeting someone. Everyone in society deserves respect and acknowledgement. My mom would say that if you see someone sweeping as you walk into a store, truly see them and say hello. It’s one of the things that’s stuck with me throughout my life — noticing opportunities for random acts of kindness.

When I got to college, I remembered my mom’s actions. I’d go out to dinner with my girlfriends every once in a while — as much

Enjoy, and have a wonderful May!

–Meliha Perez Halp ern


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Get More out of Game Night


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.

packaging. This will help you find the best match for your kids.

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

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

FIND THE RIGHT GAME FOR THE RIGHT AGE It’s important to find games that fit your children’s abilities. Complex rules, small

fun no matter what are skills they will carry with them the rest of their lives.

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


guidance, both drivers were put at ease and got through the experience with the information they needed. While reflecting on the incident, Meliha mentioned being “grateful that I was in a position that I could take the time to help these people in the crisis. We are humans, and we want to be able to help people when we can.” This wasn’t the first time Meliha helped people. She guides each of her clients through the legal process and is always willing to serve others. In the words of Meliha, “God forbid something happens.” But if it does, you need an experienced lawyer to support you. That’s when the law firm of Pérez Halpern comes in handy. Call today for a consultation.

A couple of months ago, our own attorney, Meliha Pérez Halpern, was out with a group of friends after dinner, enjoying the evening and conversation as they walked to their cars. Suddenly, they witnessed a car collision happen right in front of them. A woman in her 70s was driving along when a younger girl quickly pulled out of a parking spot and hit the woman’s car.

clearly flustered; she had been involved in a crash before and was worried about the ramifications of this new crash. The elderly woman was in shock and unsure of what to do. She had a smartphone but didn’t know what kinds of pictures to take of her car. Thankfully, Meliha was there. She walked both drivers through the process of what to do next by explaining the necessity of documenting the damage to their cars and exchanging information. Thanks to her

Both drivers were caught in an unexpected and scary situation. The younger girl was

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3. KEEP YOUR GRILL AWAY FROM STRUCTURES. Many grill-related fires are started when a nearby structure catches on fire. A simple way to avoid this is to make sure your grill is away from your house, deck, shed, and even trees. Basically, make sure that it’s a good distance from any flammable structure. Here’s another general rule of thumb for propane grills: If you smell gas while you’re grilling, turn off the grill and propane. If the smell continues, leave the grill where it is, move away, and call the fire department immediately.

sudoku 1. INSPECT YOUR GRILL BEFORE YOUR FIRST COOKOUT. If your grill has sat unused for a season or two, make sure it’s ready to go before your next barbecue. Start with a visual inspection. Make sure no animals have made their nests inside, and look for debris. It’s also a good idea to give your At Pérez Halpern, we want to keep you safe in all aspects of your life. During the summer, there’s one surprising danger that many people don’t consider: the grill. It may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think about summer safety, but maybe it should be. Every year, over 8,000 home fires are caused by carelessness around the grill. Stay safe this summer by following these safety guidelines from the National Fire Protection Association.

grill a thorough cleaning to manage buildup of grease and fat, which can increase the risk of a fire. 2. USE DISH SOAP TO CHECK FOR LEAKS ON A PROPANE GRILL. Check for any leaks by inspecting the hose and where it connects to the regulator and burners. If they’re not tight, there’s potential for a leak. Also, check the hose for cracks. For a simple but thorough leak check, all you need is a little dish soap and water. Mix the two together, then use a brush or spray bottle to apply the solution to the outside of your hose. Turn the propane on. If there are any leaks, bubbles will appear along the hose. If you notice any, turn the gas off and call in a professional.


Ingredients • 1 splash vegetable oil • 1 splash olive oil • 6 ripe plantains, peeled

• 4 cups picadillo • 6 eggs, beaten

Directions 1. In a frying pan, heat about 2 inches of vegetable oil to 350 F. Slice the plantains lengthwise into quarters. Add to the hot oil, in batches, and fry for about 4 minutes until golden on both sides. Remove from the oil, and set aside to drain on paper towels. 2. Grease 6 ovenproof individual molds with olive oil, and line the bottoms with parchment paper. Line the molds with the plantain slices, pressing well against the sides of the molds. 3. Heat oven to 350 F. Distribute the picadillo among the plantain-lined molds. Pour the beaten eggs over the piononos. Bake until the eggs are set and the piononos are golden and springy to the touch. | 3

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What Board Games Can Teach Your Kids PAGE 2 An Act of Kindness PAGE 2 How to Keep Your Barbecue From Going Up in Flames PAGE 3 Wilo Benet’s Piononos PAGE 3 3 of the Most Formidable Moms in History PAGE 4

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Mothers Shape the World

Moms make the world go round. After running the gauntlet of childbirth, they raise and guide us throughout our lives, shouldering the tremendous burden and responsibility of motherhood. Mothers are in turn formidable, kind,

to become a prominent abolitionist and a speaker for women’s rights, delivering her famous impromptu speech, “Ain’t I a Woman?” in May of 1851. IRENA SENDLER (1910–2008) When the Nazis invaded Warsaw in September of 1939, Irena Sendler, a 29-year-old social worker and mother of two, hatched a scheme to rescue Jewish children from the brutal ghettos. Along with many friends and colleagues, she smuggled out nearly 2,500 Jewish orphans, hiding infants on trams and garbage wagons and guiding kids through a labyrinth of secret passageways beneath the city. EMMELINE PANKHURST (1858–1928) Despite being a wife and the mother of five children — two of whom died tragically young — Emmeline Pankhurst became one of the fiercest advocates for women’s suffrage in the late 19th century. After founding the Women’s Social and Political Union in 1903, she and her cohorts adopted an aggressive strategy to raise awareness for the issue; they began by buttonholing politicians and staging rallies, then progressed to vandalism, window smashing, and arson. She was instrumental in the movement. Pankhurst lived to see women gain the right to vote in 1928.

powerful, gentle, wise, fierce, patient, supportive, empathetic, driven, and full of love. In honor of Mother’s Day, here are three historic moms who never stopped fighting for what they believed in. SOJOURNER TRUTH (1797–1883 ) Before she escaped from New York slaveholder John Dumont, Sojourner Truth had at least three of her children sold away from her. When Dumont went back on his promise to emancipate Truth and her infant daughter in 1826, she took the girl and fled to an abolitionist Quaker family, but she was forced to leave her other daughter and her 5-year-old son, Peter, behind. Soon after, she learned that Peter had been illegally sold by Dumont to a slaveholder in Alabama, so she went to court and secured his safe return. It was the first successful case brought by a black woman against a white man in American history. Truth went on

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