Work-Life Balance

We look at other people and see them having it all and we wonder how they do it.  You see the parents who go to every school play, but also have very successful careers – how do they balance all of that?  Is work-life balance possible – or will one thing always require more time, effort, etc. than the other?  Are there tips and tricks you can do to help you achieve a better bal...
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Sidestepping Family Drama This Holiday Season

With Thanksgiving next week, family gatherings for the holiday season are about to be in full swing.  If your holidays are less Norman Rockwell and more Clark Griswold, you aren’t alone.  A psychologist who has studied family relationships found that 75% of his sample population reported at least one family member who drove them crazy and, chances are, you have someone in your ...
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Happy Halloween!

Wishing you a spooky Halloween – hopefully full of more treats than tricks! For those with children hitting the candy hunt tonight, here are some quick safety tips: Use a buddy system or go as part of a group. Make sure that children, particularly small ones, aren’t carrying props that are sharp (like swords, canes, or sticks). Stay on sidewalks, use crosswalks, a...
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What is a Sweetheart Will?

Romantic partners, particularly married couples, often engage in estate planning together with a common set of goals in mind.  A major goal is almost always to make sure that a surviving spouse is taken care of financially when the first spouse passes away. A “sweetheart will” describes a will where a person leaves all of their assets outright to their spouse.  After one spo...
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Where to See Local Fireworks

If you want to catch some fireworks and/or get out and about for the Fourth of July holiday, but haven’t made plans yet, here are some local ideas to get you started: Waterfront Blues Fest(includes fireworks on July 4) Paul Rodeo(includes fireworks on July 4) Independence Day at Fort Vancouver(includes fireworks) Other Area Fireworks Displays: Oaks Park Co...
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ICYMI: Finding Long Lost Relatives And Friends

Changes in the season and holidays can often be a reminder of people who are no longer part of your circle – not just people who have passed away, but also family and friends who have fallen out of touch for a wide variety of reason.  Maybe someone moved away, maybe there was an argument that had lasting effects, maybe time and distance just got in the way, or maybe you are try...
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Safety Planning 101

Woman holding a sparkler
When people are in violent and/or abusive relationships, it may seem impossible to leave.  Besides fearing for their own safety, people often fear for their kids, loved ones, pets, etc.  For some people, developing a safety plan can be helpful.  A safety plan can help someone consider strategies and plans for staying safe. Comprehensive safety plans include considerations fo...
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ICYMI: 5 Things to Consider for a “Successful” Break Up

Everyone has been involved in a break-up.  Maybe it wasn’t even yours – you may have been pulled into the drama of the demise of a family member or friend’s relationship – but everyone can put themselves in the shoes of someone whose relationship is ending.  Chances are you even know people whose break-ups you have admired – they seem to maintain their cool, keep things togethe...
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First Mother’s Day for a New Mom

Yesterday was my first Mother’s Day as a mom, which is kind of weird to consider.  My daughter is a bustling 8 ½-month-old who is active and on the move, so I don’t get a lot of down time to consider the fact that I’m a mom too deeply. That being said, I do have a few reflections as my first Mother’s Day has come (and now gone): I can’t sleep. Is that the baby moving?  ...
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“You’re such a good dad.”

I am not proud of it, but I have to take a deep breath every time someone compliments my husband on being a “good dad” to our daughter.  First, let me be clear that he is a good dad.  In fact, he’s a great dad – engaged, diaper changing, swim class attending, interactive, stroller pushing, awesome all around dad. But… that’s what he’s supposed to be.  After all, he’s a dad –...
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Balancing Legal Work with Parenting

As anyone who has had a baby knows, expectations that are put on parents can be overwhelming and exhausting.  In particular, parents who work face a number of hurdles in trying to balance their work life with their home life. The legal industry can be particularly unwelcoming to parents, particularly moms.  This is a little shocking considering that women make up roughly hal...
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Charitable Giving as Part of Your Estate Plan

Many people donate to charity each year, but fewer make arrangements to donate to charity as part of their estate plan.  If you are interested in making a gift, whether big or small, to a charity, there are a number of ways you can support your favorite causes. Make gifts throughout your lifetime. While you are alive, you can support causes you believe in and make donation...
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When The Small Stuff Is The Emotional Big Stuff

An issue that often arises in both family law and estate law contexts is what to do with a personal property upon the demise of a relationship or the death of the owner.  Tangible items, whether valuable in a monetary sense or not, often have emotional value and can often become symbols of greater family conflicts. When a relationship ends, it is often necessary for the part...
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Last Minute Spring Break Ideas

I spent last week hosting my sister’s family from California for my nieces and nephew’s spring break and this week it’s Oregon’s turn! For those of you looking for some last minute ideas, here are four ideas for events going on around the area: Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI) – The current exhibit at OMSI is The Art of the Brick, which is an amazing Lego ex...
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ICYMI: Creating a Safety Plan

When people are in violent or abusive relationships, it may seem impossible to leave.  Besides fearing for their own safety, people often fear for their kids, loved ones, pets, etc.  For some people, developing a safety plan can be helpful.  A safety plan can help someone consider strategies and plans for staying safe. Comprehensive safety plans include considerations for vi...
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Ideas for Getting Out of the House with a Baby/Toddler

If you are a new-ish parent looking to get out of the house and/or meet other families, there are a lot of options in the Metro area for parents with a wide variety of interest areas to get out with their babies and little ones and do some exploring: Hike It Baby– Provides opportunities for families to get out into nature with local hikes and urban strolls. Baby and Me ...
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Free/Low-Cost Local Attractions

If the rain is starting to get to you and you are looking for some free/cheap indoor entertainment, you are in luck!  The Portland Metro area is full of interesting museums and attractions that have free and/or low-cost days each month to help you get out of the house, see and experience some fun things, and keep little ones (and the young at heart) entertained. A partial li...
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Oregon ABLE Accounts Now Available!

For Oregonians with disabilities and their families, a new account option allows individuals to save for future expenses without their account balance counting against their asset limits for Federal and State benefits (such as Social Security, SNAP, Medicaid, etc.). Prior to the passage of the ABLE Act, individuals with disabilities were only eligible for public benefits if ...
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ICYMI: Cohabitation Basics for Couples Who Live Together, but Aren’t Married

Romantic partners are living together all the time these days without getting married (and even without the intention of ever getting married).  There are important considerations to keep in mind when you make the decision to live with someone else, especially when you are romantically involved. Some people choose to enter into cohabitation agreements.  A cohabitation agreem...
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