It appears that we are slowly, but surely, emerging from the coronavirus pandemic. Does anyone else feel like we’ve been holding our worldwide collective breath for the past 12 months? It seems more than fitting that the pandemic abatement has arrived in the spring season, the time of rebirth. Yes, it’s time to breathe that sigh of relief and focus on the future. To that end, during this season of rebirth, our team decided to pay a bit of attention, and homage, to birthdays specifically.
Stephanie – Attorney For my younger birthdays, it was all about the party. Now, for my birthday, it is all about the trip. I love to go someplace new for my birthday. Whether it be by plane, train or automobile, going somewhere for a new adventure is what makes the day different and special for me. Last year, I returned from my birthday trip one week before the Covid shutdown started. This year, I have to stay in the birthday state of mind until the fall because my birthday trip won’t be happening until the fall. However, the trip will be extra special because I will be traveling with my sister who I haven’t seen in over a year because of the Covid shut down. Next year, I have a milestone birthday coming up that might require a milestone trip. My mind is already happily mulling over possible destinations. I am thinking maybe someplace out west. Has anyone enjoyed a milestone birthday destination that you think I should consider for my trip?
Amelia – Client Services Coordinator I always think to myself on my birthday, “Hey, that’s cool. I made it another trip around the sun.” What an accomplishment but, yet, I don’t necessarily set out every morning with that specific task in mind. I believe that it is a triumph to become one year older. I try to remember that birthday celebrations are a chance to reflect on the simple truth that we exist.
Candy – Marketing Coordinator One of my earliest childhood recollections is standing with my back to my mother, who was sitting in a chair and tying my dress’s sash into a bow. I was getting ready for my 4th birthday party. I remember being very excited as my guests would each go home with a goldfish of their own, my special party favor for them. (I now suspect neither my friends’ mothers nor the goldfish were happy with this parting gift from me.) Zoom forward multi-decades later, and you’ll still find me waiting with high anticipation for my special day. I don’t dwell on getting older because, to me, that’s just a waste of time and expended negative energy. Instead, I still try to plan a special uniqueness – a magical goldfish, if you will – for each of my annual birthday celebrations.
Estate Planning Thoughts
In addition to the celebration, a birthday can also be a time for reflection. A time to review the past year and to plan for the next year. It can also be the annual event that reminds us to check on the status of our important legal documents, like our will.Have you put a will in place or is that activity still sitting somewhere unfinished on your “To Do” list?
If you have put a will in place, does it still reflect your wishes accurately? Has something changed in your life that might require a change for your will? For example, have you moved to a different state or gotten married or divorced?
If you have put a will in place, does someone in your family know where it is? Your will doesn’t speak for you until you pass away, but if it can’t be found once you pass away, then sadly, your wishes remain unknown.
You may believe that if you have not put a will in place that you don’t have a will. Actually, everyone has a will because the State of Florida has a one-size-fits-all default will for everyone. If you haven’t put your own personal will in place, then we are going to distribute your assets in accordance with the instructions in the one-size-fits-all State of Florida default will.
Putting your own personal will in place allows you to opt-out of the State of Florida one-size-fits-all default will and make sure that your personal will says exactly what you want it to say, not what the State of Florida decides it must say by default.
If your birthday reflections inspire you to take some action regarding your will, we can help. Just give us a call.
Words of Wisdom from Our Pets
“Take a Chance”
Our words of wisdom for this newsletter come from the birthday girl and boy, our sweet office cats Zack and Zoe. Zack and Zoe want to remind us (in their newfound one-year-old wisdom) of the importance of seizing the day and taking a risk!
Zack and Zoe are feral kittens who took a huge leap of faith when they decided to leave their home outside and move into our office with us. It was a brave step for little kittens and, despite some initial misgivings, they don’t seem to regret their decision.
Watching them grow in confidence as they push their comfort zones and master new challenges is heartwarming (although it might take until their second birthday before they stop hiding every time they hear the doorbell ring). They are a daily reminder to us that taking a risk is sometimes a necessary step towards a happy ending!