This Weekend

Celebrate Mom! Happy Mother’s Day!

Posted in Fun Friday | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Just Around the Corner

Happy Throwback Thursday, friends! In case you haven’t heard, Mother’s Day is just around the corner. Sunday, to be exact.  And while we (as a country) are certainly better off than we were last year as far as Covid infections, a lot of Moms are not necessarily ready to get back out to a restaurant and be pampered at the spa just jet.  So, what can you do?  As you know, our Thursdays are usually reserved for Throwbacks, but they’re sometimes used for 13 Things.  So, today, we’d like to suggest 13 Things that you can do to celebrate Mom, and which any Mom (or Grandma or Aunt or even the Mother of your own kiddos) will appreciate for years to come.

Handwrite Mom a letter telling her all the reasons you love her and sharing your favorite memories of her. In an age where handwritten cards and letters are becoming a thing of the past, this will be a cherished tangible reminder of how special your mom is to you, and we guarantee, it’s something she will keep forever. (If you have your own family now, bonus if you get each of her grandkids to write their own letters, too!)

Give Mom the gift of family. Sign her up with a year’s membership to Ancestry.com and order her a DNA kit so she can get a jumpstart on learning where her family originated.  (Bonus if you take the time to teach her how to actually use the on-line features at the genealogy website.) (Tip: DNA kits are usually on sale right before Mother’s Day!)

  • Get Mom’s favorite celebrity to greet her. If you’ll Google “Celebrity Greetings,” you’ll find several sites that offer up personalized video greetings by various celebrities. We guarantee this will be a unique gift that she never dreamed of.  (Tip: if you use Cameo.com, you’ll be able to download the video and save it to a USB or DVD so that you can actually play it on the TV screen for Mom.)
  • Sign Mom up for a virtual learning class. Whether Mom’s into gardening, writing, cooking, photography, painting, or even soap-making, there are tons of virtual classes on-line that she can take at her leisure. Many well-known celebrities (chefs, authors, artists, etc.) even offer virtual Master Classes. (Bonus if you offer to take the class with her!)
  • Create an at-home spa day. Pop in to your local pharmacy and buy a nail file, some nail polish, a mud mask, bubble bath, scented lotion, a couple of candles, and some bath bombs, and you and the kids can brush Mom’s hair, paint her finger and toenails, treat her to a facial, offer her a massage, and let her finish up in the bathroom with a candlelight bubble bath. (Bonus if you play relaxing music in the background for the duration of Spa Day!)
  • Create a Book of Mom.  Start with a blank composition book, then every few pages, write a few paragraphs, almost like short essays.  (Your earliest memory, your funniest memory, your most touching memory, etc.) Tell the stories of the first time you recall taking a vacation with your mom, the first time she embarrassed you, the first time you realized she was a hero, the first time she gave you comforting advice, etc.  Then fill the pages in between with photos of the two of you or even color copies of old drawings or artwork you may have made for her years ago when you were younger.  (If you have your own family now, bonus if you get each of her grandkids to write their own “chapters”, too!)
  • Cook Mom’s favorite restaurant meal and set up her own private restaurant at home. The internet is full of restaurant recipes if you know how to look: Just Google the restaurant name + the name of the food + the words “copycat recipe.” So, for example, if you Googled “Olive Garden Lasagna Classico Copycat Recipe,” you’d get several hits that tell you how to make the yummy meal right at home. (Bonus if you get the kids to draw a menu!)
  • Create a Mother’s Day herb garden. Have (or help) the kids paint some rocks with different herb names, and pick up some herb plants, potting soil, and mason jars, then plant the herbs in the jars, add the rocks at the base of each to identify what it is.
  • Sign Mom up for a virtual fitness class (but only if she’s expressed that this is something she really wants – otherwise this could get you into big trouble!). There are numerous fitness classes on-line that Mom can participate in right at home. She can learn anything from yoga, to Pilates, kickboxing, aerobics, dance, etc. (Bonus if you take the class with her!)
  1. Create an art walk. Start by stringing up some twinkle lights and decorating the hallway with the kids’ best paintings and crafts, then let the lights guide Mom outside where the sidewalks have been chalked with Happy Mother’s Day drawings and wishes. (Tip: Be sure to video Mom’s reaction as she strolls down the art walk and takes in each treasured work.)
  1. Ask Mom to entertain you.  Moms spend so much time being unsung heroes, they listen to everyone else’s stories but oftentimes, the kiddos forget to ask Mom about her stories.  Create a list of questions to ask Mom (such as how she met Dad, how she interacted with her favorite childhood friends, what was her best childhood birthday, her favorite memory with her own mom, etc.), then actually listen when she responds.  (Bonus if you videotape the session and ask her follow-up questions later in the day, month, and year.  Double bonus if you make this a new annual tradition.)
  1. Offer to share Mom’s hobby with her – by having her teach it to you.  Whether she likes knitting, painting, sewing, gardening, writing, baking, running, photography, or anything else, buy some hobby supplies (enough for both of you) and ask her to teach you some basics of her hobby and explain why it brings her so much pleasure…Then spend a few hours with her attempting to learn from her.  (Even if you don’t have any desire to pick up her hobby as your own, the quality time you spend together will be a memory you will both cherish for years to come.)
  1.  Find 12 of Mom’s favorite old photos of her kids (as well as her and Dad) and recreate them, then turn the dozen side-by-side then-and-nows into a calendar she can enjoy all year long!  These photos are always hilarious and fun, and not only do they allow you to relive old memories, they get you to create news ones!  (Bonus if you go to a thrift store and find a lot of the similar outfits and/or background items as are in the old photos!)
Posted in Throwback Thursday | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Intersection Control

Wednesday is the day YOU get to “Ask an Attorney.”  Just leave your question in the comments below, and if your question is selected, it will be answered on an upcoming Wednesday by one of our attorneys at Dean Burnetti Law.

~*~*~*~*~

Steve G. from Brandon asks, “Last month, I was heading toward an intersection where I needed to turn left.  The light turned yellow as I approached, but I glanced in my rearview and saw that the guy behind me was talking animatedly with the other person in his car and was not looking at me.  (He’d been riding my bumper for almost a minute before that.)  So, rather than slow down to stop, I gunned it and attempted to make it through the light because I knew I’d be rear-ended.  I was almost through the intersection when a semi-truck speeding toward me from the opposite lane barreled into the back quarter of my SUV at 45 mph.  This caused my vehicle to spin around and slide into a utility pole.  I was knocked unconscious and my gas tank ignited.  I was airlifted to a burn unit and have been dealing with burns on 40% of my body.  I’ve endured multiple skin grafts and painful debridement, and I was just released yesterday.  Also, my right ankle was broken in three places when the rescuers attempted to get me out of the SUV before the fire spread further.  (My foot was apparently somehow caught under the brake pedal.)  No one got a ticket because one witness said I ran a red light and another witness said the truck driver ran the red light.  The thing is, I normally would have stopped, but with the guy behind me riding my bumper the way he did, I only had moments to react.  Is there some way a lawyer can request any surveillance from a nearby business to find this guy and change him?  Short of that, I guess I’ll have to take the blame and I don’t know how I’ll ever pay for all these surgeries and my medical care, and my wife’s job won’t support us.  Is there anything else we can do?”   

Hi, Steve.  I’m so sorry about your painful injuries.  First of all, while it’s not impossible for an attorney to be able to obtain video footage of your accident, that may or may not be enough to charge the driver that was behind you.  However, from what you’re describing, it sounds as if, because you were initially struck in the rear quarter panel, you had, what we call in the legal arena, “control of the intersection.”  This means that while you may have started turning on a yellow light, or the light turned red during your turn, you were more through the intersection than the semi-truck that just entered the intersection when he struck the rear of your vehicle.  An experienced attorney (such as myself) would argue that since you had control of the intersection, the negligence lies with the truck driver.  However, even if the truck driver’s insurance company claimed you were negligent and forced your case to litigate, the worst-case scenario would likely be a jury trial where a jury found you partially at fault.  If that were the case, the judge would then instruct the jury to assign a percentage of fault to each driver.  So, for example, if your verdict was for $250,000 and you were assigned 20% of the blame for the accident, then the truck driver’s insurance would only need to pay the remaining 80% of the verdict, or in this example, $200,000.  The bottom line is it’s a good idea to see an experienced auto accident attorney (such as myself) as soon as possible.  (By the way, if you’re unable to get to one of our conveniently located offices, one of our attorneys will be happy to come to you.)

Best wishes!

~Dean Burnetti

[If you have a question for one of our attorneys, please write it in the comments below, and be sure to check back soon for a response.]

(The information contained herein is for informational purposes only, and does not constitute legal advice.)

Posted in Ask an Attorney | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Amazing Kiddos

It’s “Tuesday Newsday,” the day when Dean Burnetti Law brings you news of recalls, legal or political events, other important happenings, or just uplifting stories that make your heart smile…

 ~*~*~*~*~

Happy Tuesday Newsday, friends! Today’s uplifting news will make your hear soar when you see how the kiddos featured take such great strides to make another child feel good.

First up, Detroit Lakes Middle School’s sixth grade teacher, Katie Biggar, has a student, Kale Hannahs, who happens to have cerebral palsy.  But that doesn’t stop Kale from dreaming big.  And it also doesn’t stop Kale’s classmates from helping him achieve his dreams.

Recently, Kale, who uses an electric wheelchair, shared with his classmates his dream of being a football player someday. 

Teacher Katie was outside with her class during recess when she witnessed Kale’s classmates make his dream come true.  The students were playing tag football, when they gave the ball to Kale and allowed him to roll in for a touchdown. 

Of the event, Katie says her students treat Kale with kindness and compassion every day.  She said, “…I think we sometimes underestimate our own kids.  [The video] was 100% kid-orchestrated. That was them being fun. They treat Kale like that every day.”

Luckily (for us), Katie captured the special moment on video.

Next up, a fifth-grade student and big sister, Elli Van Bree, made a video in time for April’s Autism Acceptance Month, to play for the students who will be starting school with her little brother, Willem, who happens to be Autistic and non-verbal.

Elli and Willem’s proud mama, Tania, was so overcome when she saw Elli’s video that she shared it on her social media platforms and Elm Grove Elementary School where the children go to school plan to air it during the school announcements.

In the loving video, Elli explains that “Sometimes new kids, or loud places, scare [Willem] because his ears and eyes are extra sensitive.”  She goes on to provide 4 tips for how to prepare to meet Willem (on another child with Autism).  And as she concludes, she says, “Overall, he’s a kid like you and me, and I hope you love him as much as I do.”

#cerebralpalsy

#autism

Posted in Tuesday Newsday | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

He Is Interested

It’s Monday. Welcome to a new week. Today is the day for “Monday Ministry.” Did you know that Attorney Dean Burnetti went to seminary before he was called to the legal field?  The following is a devotion given to you by Dean…

Revelation 3:20 – “Look! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal together as friends.”

Many times, when I meet with  clients, they ask me to pray for them. In my usual course, I say, “Yes, I will pray for you.”

grace

Today something happened that I’ve never seen occur before. The client actually asked me to stop and pray with both he and his wife in the office.  They asked me if I would lead them in prayer.  I did.  I prayed for God to bless them, for God to heal them, and for good things to occur for them in the future.  It was one of my best moments of the day.

I was impressed that they wanted me to do more than just talk about law.  They were interested in me as a person.  They actually wanted to spend a lot of our time in the initial conference talking about spiritual matters and about my life and testimony.

Today’s scripture shows us that God is interested in spending time with us.  That He stands at the door and knocks.  He wants to come in, sit down with us, and have a meal. That means “getting to know me time.”  Time that translates into a genuine interest in you and me personally.

Today and this weekend, find someone God will lead you to who you can show you are truly interested in them as a person.  Then use that chance to share with them about your personal experience in life with Christ .

Stay healthy and have a blessed week!

~Dean Burnetti

Posted in Monday Ministry | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Say Cheese!

Smile, friends, and have a great weekend!

Posted in Fun Friday | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world

Happy Throwback Thursday, friends!  Today, April 29, 2021, marks the 76th anniversary of the date that Dachau concentration camp was liberated when U.S. Seventh Army troops cleared the enemy guards from the gruesome camp.  As you may already know, Nazis had 23 main concentration camps with nearly 900 subcamps in total!

But while Dachau was the concentration camp that was in operation for the longest time during World War II, and while we celebrate their liberation today, we’re also going to be taking a look at what tomorrow, April 30th represents…  to do so, we’re going to have to time-hop further back to 1929. 

In the summer of 1929, Annelies Marie Frank was born in Frankfurt, Germany.  Her parents, Otto and Edith, and her older sister, Margot were overjoyed to welcome “Anne” into their family.  Fast forward to 1933. Adolf Hitler and the Nazis came into power, and targeted Jewish families like the Franks.  By 1942, the Frank family went into hiding in a 3-room annex apartment (of approximately 450 square feet) located above Otto’s jelly and jam factory in Amsterdam after Margot received a letter from the German government ordering her to report to a work camp.

About a week later, the franks were joined by Otto’s business associate Hermann van Pels, Hermann’s wife Auguste, and their son Peter.  Nearly four months later, they allowed Fritz Pfeffer to join them in their tight quarters.  The families were assisted by a small group of Otto’s employees, in particular, his secretary, Miep Gies.  (Fritz Pfeffer was Miep’s dentist, which is how he came to join the others.)

While they were there, the group was forced to remain silent during the day so that factory workers wouldn’t hear them.  This meant they couldn’t even flush a toilet or wash their hands.  They couldn’t even cook during this time because smells might emanate into the factory and tip someone off.  So, to pass the time, Anne chronicled her feelings and her observations in a pink and white plaid diary she’d gotten for her 13th birthday, just one month before her family went into hiding.  She pretended her diary was a friend named Kitty and she poured out her heart about everything such as the lack of privacy, feelings of confinement, arguments with her mother and sister, crushes on boys, and war and humanity.  Her dream was to someday be a famous author and journalist.

Fast forward to 1944.  After 25 months in hiding, an anonymous tipster notified the Gestapo that they suspected people were hiding, and the annex was raided by the German secret state police!  The entire group was taken to Westerbork, a holding camp in the northern Netherlands.  A month later, in September, they were sent on a freight train to the Auschwitz-Birkenau extermination and concentration camp in Poland.  Once there, Otto was separated to the men’s side of the camp and never saw his wife or daughters again.  Hermann van Pels died in the Auschwitz gas chambers soon after they arrived.  Auguste is believed to have died at the Theresienstadt concentration camp in the first quarter of the following year.  Peter died at the Mauthausen concentration camp in May of the following year. Dr. Pfeffer died from illness in December 1944 at the Neuengamme concentration camp. 

Edith refused to eat any of the meager nourishment the prisoners were provided, insisting, rather, that her daughters eat her portion.  In November 1944, Anne and Margot were transferred to Bergen-Belsen concentration camp.  They contracted typhus almost as soon as they arrived, and in February 1945, they both died (just prior to Anne’s 16th birthday).  (They missed being liberated by British forces by less than two months!)  Back at Auschwitz, in January 1945, Edith died of starvation.  (She missed being liberated by Soviet troops by a matter of days!)  Otto was the only member of their group to survive, and he was liberated by the Soviet Army on 27 January 1945.

After Otto recovered from his poor health after being imprisoned, he returned to Amsterdam and Miep Gies gave him several notebooks and loose papers containing Anne’s writings. (She recovered them shortly after the group was arrested and hid them in her desk.)  As it turns out, Margot also kept a diary, but it was never located.  Without his family, Otto now knew he had a new mission:  to fulfill Anne’s dream of being a published author.  So, he helped compile them into a manuscript entitled “Het Acheterhuis” (“Rear Annex”).  The book was published in the Netherlands in 1947, but publishers in the United States and much of the rest of the world thought it was too depressing and refused to publish it…

Until (here it is!) 69 years ago tomorrow, April 30th 1952, when the US decided to take a change and publish “The Diary of a Young Girl”.  What a good thing, indeed, that the US and other countries decided to wake up and take a chance on allowing their readers to have access to such a valuable piece of history.  Anne’s diary went on to sell tens of millions of copies worldwide, and has been labeled a testament to the indestructible nature of the human spirit. It’s even a required reading material at schools all over the world.  It’s been adapted into plays and no less than 7 movies.  And the annex where she wrote it is now a museum known as the “Anne Frank House” which is dedicated to her life and the lives of those who lived there with her.

So today, dear friends, we’ll leave you with a couple of quotes from Anne herself, which you can also find in her diary:

“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”

“Everyone has inside of him a piece of good news. The good news is that you don’t know how great you can be! How much you can love! What you can accomplish! And what your potential is!”

“What is done cannot be undone, but one can prevent it happening again.”

Posted in Throwback Thursday | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Prior Injury, Current Injury

Wednesday is the day YOU get to “Ask an Attorney.”  Just leave your question in the comments below, and if your question is selected, it will be answered on an upcoming Wednesday by one of our attorneys at Dean Burnetti Law.

~*~*~*~*~

Barbara T. from Plant City asks, “Nine years ago, I was a passenger on a motorcycle that skidded off the road in an oil slick.  I broke my collarbone and had damage to my cervical spine which required surgery, but it hasn’t really bothered me in a long time, except in extremely cold weather.  Last weekend, I was hit broadside in the rear end of my car which cause my car to spin and hit the front of my car on his car.  This happened in an intersection, even though my light was green.  The person who hit me got a ticket (he was on his cellphone and missed his light turning red), and my car was totaled.  But even worse, my neck hurts like crazy!  My husband says I need to see a lawyer, however, won’t they just say I’m out of luck because I already had a neck injury before?”   

Hi, Barbara.  I’m so sorry about your unfortunate injuries.  Let me assure you that yours is a question I’m asked rather frequently.  Your prior injury is what we in the legal world call a “pre-existing condition”.  And the answer is, yes, you can still pursue a claim against the driver (and possibly also the owner of the car if that is a different person or entity).  The amount of the settlement you may get will possibly be reduced to account for the pre-existing damage of your prior injury.  However, if a different area of your neck was affected that would have nothing to do with exacerbating the prior injury.  Your doctor will be able to tell whether this is the case.  The bottom line is it’s a good idea to see an experienced auto accident attorney (such as myself) as soon as possible, and if you haven’t yet seen a doctor, please do so right away. If you wait more than 14 days after your accident, your PIP benefits will be greatly reduced.

Best wishes!

~Dean Burnetti

[If you have a question for one of our attorneys, please write it in the comments below, and be sure to check back soon for a response.]

(The information contained herein is for informational purposes only, and does not constitute legal advice.)

Posted in Ask an Attorney | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

People Are Really So Wonderful!

It’s “Tuesday Newsday,” the day when Dean Burnetti Law brings you news of recalls, legal or political events, other important happenings, or just uplifting stories that make your heart smile…

 ~*~*~*~*~

Happy Tuesday Newsday, friends!  Grab the tissues, because today’s uplifting news is sure to bring tears of joy to your eyes…

Last year, Gloria Walker of Philadelphia was diagnosed with late-stage bladder cancer.  When she shared her news with her family, her son Dustin Vitale asked her: “If there’s one thing in the world you can do, what would it be?'”

Her answer?  She said, “I’d like to see the pyramids.”  In fact, ever since she was a small child, she had a dream to one day go to Egypt and see them.  However, she didn’t just want to go alone or with her hubby, but rather with her entire family which totaled 14 people!

Dustin was unable to fork over enough money to pay for the entire family on his middle school teacher’s salary, so, he made a plan to use his mom’s recipe and sell cheesesteaks to raise the funds.  He started advertising on his Instagram feed, and friends, family, and his students helped spread the word.  He posted:

“If you are interested in supporting me in trying to make my mom’s dream come true as she battles cancer. You can support by purchasing a cheesesteak, chicken cheesesteak, or Buffalo chicken cheesesteak (all come with fries and a tooonnnn of meat) All for just $15!  You can Venmo me at Dustin-Vitale or cashapp me at $DustinVitale. Business days are Friday Saturday and Sunday (12-8pm) Preorder only!  Message me your order, the day and time of pickup. Must order in advance! I will confirm if the time slot is available. Pick up only at my house in Oxford circle/Summerdale neighborhood of northeast Philly. I will give the exact address when order is confirmed. Thank you for your love, support and prayers!”

That very weekend, cars began double-parking outside his house. It wasn’t long before strangers started showing up at his front door.  And as they ate the delicious sandwiches, they spread the word, and Dustin was nearly overwhelmed by the response.  In fact, he said, “We ended up doing 94 in one day and we were like just blown away.”

On sale days, Dustin and his wife, Hailey, wake at 4 a.m. to bake their own rolls and shop for ingredients.  Each shopping spree typically includes 60 pounds of beef and 30 pounds of chicken. Each sandwich comes with 14 to 16 ounces of meat and is prepared on Dustin’s griddle-top grill on his deck.

Soon, the word spread further and a food truck operator volunteered his services to help.  A short six weekends later, and Dustin had $18,000 – which was all the money they needed and then some. The family has already booked their trip for later this year.

As for Gloria, she was overwhelmed by the magnitude of her son’s love.  She says Cleopatra never had it so good.  Watch the video below to see more of this amazing story…

Next up, last December, 4-year-old twins, Luna and Gianella Gonzalez, each wrote a letter to Santa with their Christmas lists.  Their mom, Leticia Flores- Gonzalez, then purchased two helium balloons and attached the girls’ lists.  Then, they released the balloons from their home in Liberal, Kansas.

Christmas came and went, and the balloons were all but forgotten.  However, in January, Alvin Bamburg, a dad and grandfather from Grand Cane, Lousiana, found one of the balloons and was compelled to become a Santa’s Helper.  Alvin and his wife posted a photo of Luna’s note on their social media accounts, and asked for help locating the note’s author. 

After hundreds of shares by friends, family, and strangers, Alvin finally located Leticia, two states and 600 miles away! 

Leticia learned of Alvin’s quest to locate them and was, at first, hesitant to respond.  She said, “I felt bad. I didn’t want gifts. I didn’t do it for that purpose.  [But] my sister and family told me it’s a once-in-a-lifetime thing. Finally, after we spoke for a while, they convinced me to go ahead and get ahold of Alvin.”

After getting permission from Leticia, Alvin and his wife purchased all the gifts on the list and shipped them to the excited twins – with the exception of the puppy.  That was a gift that needed to be delivered in person. 

So, Alvin and his wife purchased a pup and drove for hours to meet the twins and introduce them to their new dog, Max.  The girls were elated, and Leticia was overwhelmed.  In fact, they’ve unofficially adopted Alvin into their family.  After meeting the kind strangers, Leticia said, “It’s not about the amount or value of gifts that were sent to my girls that is the most important, it’s the love they were sent with that holds the value.”

Watch the video below to see more of this heartwarming story…

Finally, in case you were wondering why ladies get to go first, a little gentleman named Liam is here to explain the answer…

Posted in Tuesday Newsday | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

All You Need Is Love

It’s Monday. Welcome to a new week. Today is the day for “Monday Ministry.” Did you know that Attorney Dean Burnetti went to seminary before he was called to the legal field?  The following is a devotion given to you by Dean…

1 John 4:16 “And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.”

What is your connection with God?  All things that are worthwhile are connected by love.  I am of the strong opinion that no other connection will withstand time or be of value.

That’s what makes our relationships with children and grandchildren so special. They are only connected to you by love. You can see it in their eyes.

Why do you think Jesus said that you must come to God as little children? It’s because they only come looking for love.

jesus

The Bible declares that God is love, that He loves you, and that He died for you because He loves you.  There is no connection between you and God unless it is filled with love.

Start each day in prayer looking for God’s love. Start each prayer embracing Jesus in your mind, heart, and soul.  It is the only way to start and finish the course.

“This is the day that the Lord has made. I will rejoice and be glad in it.”

Be Blessed!

Have a blessed day!

~Dean Burnetti

Posted in Fun Friday, Monday Ministry | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment