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Month: June 2018

June 2018

Your Stop Doing List

“What action have you taken?” “None,” I replied. Being an attorney, I had the evidence in my defense prepared. My sister was in the hospital.             I was busy grading mid-term exams.             I had a deadline on a big writing project. That was just the start. I continued to justify how I had spent my time since my last call with my coach. How I had a board meeting for the bar association, how I took my 80 year old mother shopping, how I led a meditation for a faith community. My coach was quiet as I carried on
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Single Parent Seesaw

I looked at the month ahead.  Wait. Is that a mistake, I wondered.  Three weekends in a row I had marked down “girls” in my calendar.  Just the thought perked me up.  3 weekends in a row!  Simultaneously a shift and a gift!  My feet danced a little in my shoes as I felt the irresistible urge to jump around and bring my fist down in a triumphant “yes!” I remembered that my former spouse was going on vacation and the result was 3 weekends in a row for me, followed by 3 weekends in a row for him.  As
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Credit Cards and Divorce

Credit card accounts and debt can become contentious issues during the divorce process. How is credit card debt divided? Who keeps the credit cards after divorce? What happens if my spouse obtained a secret credit card during our marriage? Here are answers to five frequently asked questions regarding credit card issues during divorce. How Is Credit Card Debt Divided? Credit card debt accrued during marriage is divided fairly between spouses, which usually means an equal division regardless of which spouse incurred the debt. What If My Spouse Opened a Secret Credit Card During Our Marriage? While the general rule is
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Goal Getter Meets Dream Diminisher

Carmen is my tailor. She transforms my thrift store finds into perfectly fitted favorites. She lets me stop in without an appointment and turns things around in a matter of days. I’m a loyal if infrequent customer of many years. Carmen is a no nonsense business woman.  “When do you want it, lady?” she asks directly in her noticeable accent. Her small shop has two dressing rooms. There is a glass jar for tips at the counter where a window opens into a room with clothing hanging on one wall and large bright spools of thread on the other. An
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Collaborative Divorce vs. Traditional Litigated Divorce

Collaborative divorce is an alternative method for couples facing divorce.  Through the collaborative process, spouses pledge to resolve all issues without court intervention.  In a collaborative divorce, spouses focus on settlement with the goal to minimize the negative economic, social, and emotional consequences that families face in the traditional adversarial divorce process. In a traditional divorce, the process to reach a settlement agreement is done so through the lens of the adversarial process, with spouses postured as opponents and case strategy developed to prepare for trial.  As such, even when a case settles without a trial, both spouses walk away
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Double Dose

Dave needs his knee replaced. Jan is getting chemo. Sharon just got home from the hospital with three diagnoses. Frank is healing from shoulder surgery. Gay’s cancer is spreading. Mary’s meds are keeping her up at night. Too many to count are anxious or depressed or both. Many people I love most live each day with a significant health challenges. I’m one of the lucky ones. I am the oldest person in my office but still get nominated as one of the healthiest. I’ve been given good enough genes, escaped terrible toxins, and avoided enough sports such that so far
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Meaningful Mentor: A Tribute to Susan Ann Koenig

If you are lucky in this life you will meet a real-life super hero.  If you are even luckier, that super hero will become your life mentor.  I find myself in the category of luckiest because Susan Ann Koenig is, in fact, a real-life super hero and my life mentor. Susan and I met each other in 1999.  She was the guest lecturer at my family law practice night class in law school.  The topic was Domestic Violence and the Practice of Law.  I was a second year law student and was working 32 hours a week at Friendship Home
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Collaborative Divorce Part II

Not all divorces have to (or should) go to court.  Rather, spouses may find that an alternative to litigation will serve them better both during and after the divorce process.  In family law related matters, Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) processes, such as mediation or collaborative law have risen greatly in popularity in the last 20 years. For example, in 2007 in Nebraska, the Parenting Act was passed, which requires parents involved in litigation regarding custody of their children to attempt mediation to resolve contested issues before a Judge will make a ruling on those disputed issues. Collaborative divorce is often
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Rest Relax Reflect Repeat

“Go to bed, Suzy,” he said. It was not a command, but more like a kind instruction given to an impaired person in need of direction. My late husband would say this phrase to me at the end of a day when my fatigue and its accompanying grumpiness were obvious yet I was oblivious. John was lived with cancer for many years, and he’d become an expert at paying attention to one’s body. He was one of many wise teachers, coaches, and doctors who have invited me to notice and attend to what my mind, body, and spirit need. My
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When the Sparkle Fades

I was stunned by the news.  The woman whose brand was sparkle had killed herself.  Kate Spade.  The woman who penned several life mottos for me: “She leaves a little sparkle wherever she goes” and “She is Quick and Curious and Playful and Strong.”  She believed in a “world filled with seersucker and polka dots – friends and fireflies – cocktails and crosswords – personal style and simplicity.” I remember my first Kate Spade purse – bright pink with a big bow.  My friends laugh at my loyalty to her as I save up my money and then carry a
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