Thursday, September 13, 2018

Book Review: Raising a Secure Child

Raising a Secure Child: How Circle of Security Parenting Can Help You Nurture Your Child's Attachment, Emotional Resilience, and Freedom to Explore
By Kent Hoffman, Glen Cooper, and Bert Powell

This was recommended to be by some therapists that I work with regularly on my cases, as it is the background for the Circle of Security Parenting curriculum that we often have parents go through as part of their case plans to reunify with their children. I've often heard these same therapists, as well as foster parents, say that the method helped them with their own parenting as well. I wanted to read the book and learn more about the curriculum that I advocate for parents to learn from. And I can say that this stuff makes good, common sense, but isn't a series of steps that you have to learn or do. It simply requires that you look at parenting in a framework of children needing to explore as well as be comforted, and parents needing to help children in this circle by being bigger, stronger, wiser, and kind. This book is fantastic, and I recommend that ALL parents read it, truly.

Friday, September 7, 2018

Book Review: Inside the Mind of BTK

Inside the Mind of BTK: The True Story Behind the Thirty-Year Hunt for the Notorious Wichita Serial Killer
By John Douglas and Johnny Dodd

I listened to this in audio, as my husband is a huge fan of true crime and had already purchased it from Audible. I've read John Douglas previously, and do enjoy his books, as he writes about his time in the behavioral analysis unit of the FBI and some of the cases that he investigated. This is about the BTK (Bind Torture Kill) serial killer who kept Wichita in fear for decades.

This book was very, very good. But the narrator is not good. He mispronounces words, and doesn't have an engaging voice. So I recommend the book, but not on Audible.

Friday, August 31, 2018

Book Review: Heinous, Atrocious & Cruel

Heinous, Atrocious & Cruel: The Casebook of a Death Penalty Attorney
By Terrence M. Lenamon with Brooke Terpening

I found out about this book at a seminar that I attended for trial lawyers in the fall of 2017. Terence Lenamon was one of our speakers, and had such powerful stories to tell about his work that I knew that I needed to buy his book. I picked this up on Kindle, and made a point to read only one chapter in a sitting so that I could really think about each of the stories. Each chapter is a story of Terence's interactions with former clients who were charged with murder and facing the death penalty. It was equal parts heartbreaking (for the victims of the crimes and for the defendants), and inspiring (in reminding me that clients are real people with real life stories and circumstances that have to be considered). I recommend this for lawyers and non-lawyers alike.

Monday, October 30, 2017

What to do and know before your first meeting with a lawyer

Meeting with lawyers is often something that makes people anxious. I thought it would be helpful if I put together some tips for those meeting with a lawyer for the first time, based on my experience in working with clients. Some are dos and don'ts from meetings that have gone well or gone very poorly. Hope that you find them helpful.

1. Remember that lawyers are just people. There's no reason to be anxious or intimidated. We're here to help try to help you.

2. Schedule an appointment. Lawyers aren't Burger King. You don't get to just walk in and meet with a lawyer. Attorneys have other hearings and meetings, and projects to work on. Schedule an appointment so that you have the lawyer's full attention.

3. Know how long your appointment is scheduled for, so that you can be respectful of the attorney's time and other commitments.

4. Be on-time for your appointment. Again this is a way to be respectful of the attorney's time and other commitments.

5. If you can't make it to your appointment, or have hired another attorney, call and let the staff know that you are cancelling. Don't just no-show. It's rude.

6. If you think that documents, e-mails, text messages, photos, or anything similar are important to your case (or might be), bring them with you.

7. If there are particular people who know something about your case, bring their contact information (name, address, telephone number) with you, so that the attorney can get in touch if need be.

8. If your issue deals with a case already on file, bring the pleadings that you were served with. At a minimum, it is best if the attorney knows where the case is filed, and what the case number is.

9. Be respectful to attorneys and staff. Remember that we're all just people trying to do the best jobs that we can.

10. Don't be afraid to ask about the costs. But remember that attorneys may need to get some information from you about your case before they can set fees, retainers, etc.

11. If you don't understand what the lawyer means, say so and ask questions. Lawyers sometimes use jargon or terminology specific to an area of law, and may not realize that you don't understand.

12. Don't bring children, pets or other distractions to your appointment. Come ready to focus on the issue at hand

13. Remember that lawyers can't change the facts or the law. We can give you the best legal advice possible, and give you an idea of what you can expect. But we can't change the underlying facts or the law that applies to those facts, so we can't always give you what you want to hear.