Right at HOME Video e-Magazine October 2022 Issue

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Maternity Makeover

and major expansion of its OB/GYN wing, making it more appealing and modern. Six spacious rooms were added to 16 that were completely refurbished – imagine a star from a popular home redecorating show waving their magic wand to redo the maternity area. “Cool, relaxing shades of blue and grey and artwork of regional foliage create a soothing ambiance that encourages moms to relax and enjoy their special event,” said North Central Baptist COO Rachel Montgomery.

“It’s so nice to see the aesthetics of the maternity unit now match the quality of the hospital,” said Kristin Shah, M.D., board certified OB/GYN with Women Partners, one of three large Stone Oak physician groups that refer patients to the Nest. Dr. Shah not only delivers her patients’ babies at the Nest at North Central Baptist, she had her own children there. “Both as a physician and a mom, it’s the only hospital I want to deliver in,” she said. “The team approach between physicians and nurses is incredibly collegial.”

“Our goal was to provide the very best environment for the very best outcomes, so no detail was overlooked in the redo. We introduced better engineering down to improved air exchanges, LED lighting, and new door operators for ease of use. All new flooring, equipment and corridor upgrades, highlighted by a brand new central nurses’ station provide better communication, visibility and comfort for our patients,” Rachel said. All the rooms, whether labor and delivery, C-section or postpartum, are sizable and private, outfitted with luxury linens and comfortable furnishings on which a support person and mom can rest. The boutique experience includes a post-delivery, “Stork Meal,”

complimentary in-room dinner for the new mom and dad, massage for mom, and free, designated expectant mom parking spots. The Nest offers the option for photography and video to discretely capture the intimate moments and/or take pictures of the newborn.

The Nest is the go-to medical destination for all things related to moms and babies – whether maternal, neonatal, antepartum, or postpartum care. Everything a woman could possibly need to make her delivery experience safe and comfortable is located under one roof, including Baptist Health System’s pediatric specialty physicians and the highest level of Neonatal Intensive Care Unit – a 72-bed Level IV NICU. Two board-certified OB/ GYNs are on premises 24/7, and not one, but three, operating rooms are dedicated to Cesarean sections. Two new operating rooms slated to open in December will finalize this project and provid a boutique space for minimally invasive gynecological surgery specific to women’s health.

BJ and Morgan Stewart welcome their new baby boy, Brody, to their family. Morgan recently delivered at the newly renovated Nest at North Central Baptist. By Amy Morgan T he Nest, North Central Baptist Women’s Services located at 520 Madison Oak Drive, recently completed renovation The Nest Women’s Services at North Central Baptist Completes Renovations – Aesthetics Match Quality

Rooms at the Nest are outfitted with luxury linens and comfortable furnishings on which a support person and mom can rest.

“The Nest is a great location for delivering babies,” said Bill Waechter, North Central Baptist’s CEO, who noted Stone Oak is experiencing a surge in babies being born — 504 at the Nest this August alone! “Baptist Children’s Hospital, celebrating its 25th year, shares the campus, and we have all the specialists here for delivery and after. We’re the friendly neighborhood hospital that also provides the highest standard of care.”

Maternal and Fetal Specialist Melinda McFarland, M.D., is the Nest’s Medical Director and oversees high-risk deliveries. She spearheads a proactive treatment plan to stave off problems if a patient’s health is identified as being concerning, perhaps evidencing gestational diabetes or heart disease. Dr. McFarland involves specialty physicians to intervene early and make sure everyone is prepared for a potentially difficult delivery. “Even if you have an uncomplicated pregnancy, issues can develop during labor or at the time of delivery for mother or baby,” she said. “If something comes up, you are in the right place at North Central Baptist.” In addition to OB/GYN, Dr. McFarland is also board certified in Clinical Genetics, training that helps her counsel pregnant women with potential genetic risk conditions.

“All the resources for someone with a high-risk pregnancy or delivery are here. We hope you don’t need them, but we’re leaning forward, ready to go, if you do,” Bill added.

Great Expectations labor and delivery patient navigators are unique to the Nest. These trained professionals are available to answer any questions and ensure the entire pregnancy and delivery experience runs smoothly. Nurse navigator Kris Baxter, R.N., B.S.N., partners with Dr. McFarland and her colleagues to ensure a high-risk delivery progresses safely. Kris also can refer an expectant mom to an OB/GYN doctor or pediatrician, set up daddy day camps, breastfeeding class, handle situations like adoption or surrogacy, or provide extra support for those needing help with the registration system.

Another benefit to patients, the Nest offers a dedicated emergency room just for pregnant women. Women 20+ weeks experiencing pain or who have some other problem such as being involved in a minor traffic accident can skip an ER wait and head right to OB Triage where an OB/GYN hospitalist physician and trained OB nurses are on call 24/7.

“While the OB is the primary doctor for the pregnant mom, OB Triage is the first place a pregnant woman with almost any problem will come,” Dr. McFarland said. “She’ll have access to all the services at the hospital and can receive lab and imaging results promptly.”

If you are pregnant or considering adding a new family member, find out more about the Nest’s amenities, care and services located right in your neighborhood. Visit https:// www.baptisthealthsystem.com/services/obstetrics to set an appointment with a navigator or take a tour.

The Nest offers photography and video to discretely capture intimate moments with your newborn.

Don't Fall into Fall

clocks back from Daylight Savings Time each year. Don’t “fall back” when performing that or other seasonal tasks that might inspire you to be up on a ladder this autumn. If you must climb one, make sure it doesn’t have any broken rungs and that someone holds it steady and stands ready to help if something does go wrong. Likewise, using a kitchen chair (with their tendency to break) as a stepstool is not wise.

Bathrooms are one of the most dangerous places in the house. Sinks, showers, tubs - all can create wet surfaces that turn into a slipand-slide with the wrong step. Tread cautiously and keep floors dry.

Outside, cooler weather may cause pavement to shift. Check your sidewalks and driveways and repair any uneven walkways. Secure hoses or other outdoor equipment that might cause a tripping hazard.

Even our animals can cause a problem, especially for someone less agile. It’s easy to get tangled in Kitty’s tail or knocked over by Fido’s enthusiastic pounce or wag. And don’t forget your horses - a startled horse can easily cause its rider to take a tumble.

Is your accident or troubling symptom worth braving a potentially hours-long wait in a hospital emergency room? There’s a better option. Drive north just 15 minutes on US Highway 281 to Physicians Premier, a freestanding emergency room located west on Highway 46 near the HEB Plus. Physicians Premier offers all the capabilities of a hospital emergency room without the wait or the crowd.

Physicians Premier can handle any type of traumatic injury or illness, both pediatric and adult. If a slip results in bruising or potential broken bones, the facility includes on-site X-rays, CAT scans, a full laboratory and ultrasound. Broken bones, including ribs, can cause internal bleeding or puncture vital organs, said Medical Director Zack Baum, M.D.,

and head and back trauma should be evaluated for concussion or spinal cord injury.

Dr. Baum, a Hill Country native who helped open the Physicians Premier Bulverde location in 2017, experienced the efficiency and efficacy of care first-hand when his son broke his arm. Dr. Baum knew “the normal waiting time in an emergency room would be a couple of hours for something like that. We were in Physicians Premier, seeing the doctor, X-rayed, splinted and out the door in under an hour,” he testified.

The physician-owned and operated facility accepts all insurances and commits to work with each patient to make sure charges are billed appropriately with the least amount of out-of-pocket expense. They also offer a discounted self-pay rate and temporary authorization for Medicare and Tri-Care.

Physicians Premier allows patients to access the care they need when they need it, saving time, money, alleviating concern and allowing for a healthier patient and community. Find them at MDpremier.com.

By Amy Morgan
It’s recommended we change the batteries in our fire detectors when we turn our
Avoid Household Hazards
EMERGENCY CARE 24/7! 20475 Highway 46, Suite 100 Spring Branch, TX 78070 (830) 438-6911 MDPremier.com

David’s Doorstep

Bringing You Home, One Step at a Time

R ealtor David Avila brings his doorstep to yours. For the past six years, he’s been committed to helping people level up

to a better standard of living. In 2017 he left a career in corporate America to offer the community a better service experience and have more autonomy over his own productivity. “Real estate gives me the opportunity to drive my own business,” he said. David builds on financial service experience he learned in the banking industry. During the sub-prime lending crisis of the mid-2000s, he evaluated clients’ financial profiles and helped them modify rising ARM loans. Now he’s able to explain to first time buyers how much house they actually can afford.

David's dedication to serving the entire San Antonio community, including those with lesser assets, is in part to the values he shares with his wife, Fabiola, who is a director at the oldest nonprofit in town. He has learned that all clients are looking for a better quality of life for themselves and their children. Connecting with them where they are is important. Being involved in the community allows him to show people opportunities for funding and explain how he can help them achieve their dreams. He also volunteers with non-profit Mi Ciudad es Mi Casa and recently helped several hundred people seeking affordable housing at Haven for Hope. “It’s a passion of mine to help people,” he said. “Sometimes they never knew they would be able to live in a better place.”

He remembers one client living in a distressed property in a backyard – really little more than a shack. A financial check revealed the man qualified for far more than he imagined. David found a three-bedroom, two bath house with a garage that could also house the person’s home mechanic business. “I was able to improve his life and his business,” David said. “He was so appreciative he shared my information with all his friends and family members.”

After carefully evaluating several brokerages, David settled at Xsellence Realty with broker Robert Saenz in December 2020. He’s won the agency’s Realtor of the Month award four times and was named a top producer with $7 million in sales last year. As the eldest agent at Xsellence Realty, David enjoys mentoring others. “It’s a family feel,” he said. “I provide a lot of mental guidance.” Xsellence Realty allowed David to continue to incorporate his @DavidsDoorstep brand.

He and Fabiola recently renovated a 1940s home near Thomas Jefferson High School, gutting the interior but keeping the original Mediterranean design. The location keeps them close to their San Antonio community roots and their parish, Basilica of the National Shrine of the Little Flower.

He encourages potential buyers not to be afraid of rising interest rates but to buy if the timing is right for them. “Your needing a house today is the most important priority,” he said. He noted although the interest seems high in comparison to recent historical lows, a 5% range is not bad on average. “Don’t focus your dreams on what other people have. Do the best with what you have and what you can,” he said. “These are your dreams.”

Xsellence Realty (210) 277-0100 info@sa-broker.com 12415 Bandera Rd Ste 108 Helotes, TX, 78023

By Amy Morgan
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“Frank is awesome! He is very straight-forward. He will only give you facts after running the numbers. He has great communication skills and kept us informed during the entire process. Our closing was handled and complete within 9 days.4 Thanks again to Frank Paredez and his team for assisting us with the purchase of our first home!”

— Chamise FRANK PAREDEZ SALES MANAGER/VP OF MORTGAGE LENDING I have helped many people achieve their dreams of homeownership. I’ll answer all your questions and outline all your options—empowering you as a buyer, while finding your perfect loan. Whether you’re a first-time homebuyer, refinancing your current home or buying a second, my team and I can help you finance the home of your dreams. 19230 Stone Oak Pkwy., Suite 240, San Antonio, TX 78258 (210) 362-0064 frank.paredez@rate.com rate.com/frankparedez Frank Paredez NMLS ID: 1628244; TX - Licensed | Guaranteed Rate, Inc.; NMLS #2611; For licensing information visit nmlsconsumeraccess.org. Equal Housing Lender. Conditions may apply. (20220615-1471253) 1. Source: Loan Volume is based on Guaranteed Rate production report for funded loans 01/01/2021-12/31/2021 2. All data is sourced from Guaranteed Rate’s Client Satisfaction Surveys (2021) 3. Source: According to Scotsman Guide Top Mortgage Lenders 2020 Top Retail Volume List 4. Guaranteed Rate cannot guarantee that an applicant will be approved or that a closing can occur within a specific timeframe. All dates are estimates and will vary based on all involved parties level of participation at any stage of the loan process. Applicant subject to credit and underwriting approval. Not all applicants will be approved for financing. Receipt of application does not represent an approval for financing or interest rate guarantee. Restrictions may apply, contact Guaranteed Rate for current rates and for more information. My promise to you Constant communication, elite customer service & industry expertise. WATCH NOW

Team Player

While American culture is becoming more individualistic, Ronald Reagan High School

student Marcella Perry finds playing with a partner doubles her fun. She enjoys having a teammate on the court – whether it’s tennis for Reagan’s varsity team or sand volleyball through the 2:10 Volleyball Club. Marcella, sister Leah (Reagan freshman), and their brother, Jacob (RHS 2022), grew up playing tennis with their father at the Jewish Community Center – skills that now translate well to family pickleball competitions. Marcella is pleased to note her game has improved to the point she can finally beat her older brother!

Being part of Reagan’s tennis team has produced some of Marcella’s favorite high school memories, including a team birthday party for Coach Daniel at Taco Palenque during one of their tournament travels. She even loved the five-hour bus trip, as it gave her time to bond with fellow teammates. Marcella’s inspired by the legacy of one of the team’s singles players who won the state title last year. She’s hoping to contribute to the Rattler’s appearance at regionals again this year.

The active senior juggles travel with the Reagan tennis team with weekend sand volleyball tournaments, a sport she enjoys with her sister, who also plays on Reagan’s volleyball team. Marcella started playing volleyball in the 5th grade through the Mays YMCA, continuing through freshman year, until she decided to concentrate her school sport efforts on tennis. She and Leah must place in tournaments to qualify for nationals. Last year both Perry girls made it to the finals in Tampa. The entire family went to support their games over Thanksgiving break. Recently, a fellow player requested Marcella as a partner for a tournament in Gulf Shores, Alabama. Although the girls had not met previously, they were able to seamlessly communicate and advance in the tournament.

The San Antonio native moved to Stone Oak in time to be part of Vineyard Ranch Elementary School’s inaugural class her second grade year. Her favorite class at Reagan has been Macro-Economics with Mr. Harris. “He makes the subject fun even though the concept is hard,” she said. Marcella is involved in Reagan’s Health Occupations Club and takes the medical assistant class through NEISD’s Career and Technical Education Center. Mid-day, she rides a bus to the campus close to Heroes Stadium that contains a classroom mimicking a physician’s office. Marcella’s learned how to take vitals, use a stethoscope and draw blood. The class will allow her to earn a certificate and be prepared to work in a medical-related job during college. She hopes to take up the mantle of her mother’s dream to become an optometrist.

While sports and service at the Agudas Achim synagogue leave little free time, Marcella does fit in a few hours weekly working at Chloe Rose to fund her passion for fashion. She found her birthday and prom dresses at the boutique – both in her signature color – pink.

Reagan Senior Student Excels in Partnerships
Watch our customer testimonial video about Maid Brigade.
Travis Dezuba, Marketing Director, 7to7 Dental
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Help Travis DeZuba and 7to7 Dental put an end to breast cancer by contributing today. Every donation registers you to WIN a pink NorthFace backpack, Wine & Tumbler or a one-year complimentary Dental Membership with 7 to 7 Dental. DONATE Stone Oak Church Sunday Service @ 10:30 a.m. Children’s Sunday School @ 10:30 a.m. Adult Bible Study, Sunday @ 9:00 a.m. Women’s Bible Study, Wednesdays @ 10:00 a.m. 20024 Crescent Oaks San Antonio, TX 78258 (across from Stone Oak Elementary School) 210-497-7974 www.stoneoakchurch.org Stone Oak Church - Your Neighborhood Church Bring Your Family to the Annual Pumpkin Patch! Great Photo Opportunities! Requesting a $10 donation with visitors’ choice of pumpkin. Children receive a Free palm pumpkin with each large pumpkin purchase. October 10 until the pumpkins are all gone. Sun-Fri 12 noon-7 p.m. Sat. 9 a.m.-7 p.m.

Think Pink

Schedule Dental Care in October to Maximize Benefits

Think Pink this October! Schedule your dental cleanings and check-ups this fall and help 7to7 Dental & Orthodontics support a good cause. Every year the practice has fun while raising funds for the American Cancer Society. The office celebrates The Power of Pink with decorations, balloons, scrubs, gloves and lighting in various shades of the hue to raise awareness and encourage donations. All told, 7to7 Dental has given more than $14,000 over the years.

Travis Dezuba, 7to7 Dental’s Director of Marketing, serves as an ambassador for the San Antonio Branch of the

American Cancer Society. He’s planned several incentives to encourage giving - patients who participate have been eligible for a chance to win a pink Yeti cooler, Spurs tickets, chair massages, and pink tumblers. Donations from staff have accumulated chances to throw pink balloons filled with pink paint at the practice’s management team. One lucky employee even was invited to use a high-powered balloon launcher to try to “paint” Travis pink. One year, 7to7 Dental founder and CEO Justin Coke personally visited each office dressed in a pink wig and tutu as a reward when staff raised $1500 in a week!

The buzz in the office energizes patients and staff alike to join in the project. Don’t miss the fun. Come in and keep your whole family on track to use up every bit of the dental insurance benefits you’ve paid for all year. If you don’t have a dental plan because you might have missed an employer’s enrollment period or started a new job, you can sign up for one of 7to7 Dental’s membership plans and be treated immediately.

7to7 Dental offers three plans to meet any family’s budget and needs. Each covers cleanings as well as X-rays, fillings, extractions, crowns, and implants. The Platinum plan includes a 10% discount on orthodontics, a savings that virtually covers the cost of the plan if a family member needs braces or Invisalign. Plans range from $20.99-$49.99/month, depending on level of coverage desired. Monthly payments in digestible amounts are easy. Discounts accrue as multiple family members enroll. 7to7 Dental’s plans never require a deductible, so there’s not any additional out-of-pocket cost.

The hiring climate has been tough. Businesses looking to provide an attractive benefit option to attract or retain employees without incurring additional expense can sign up for an employee discount on 7to7’s membership plan through a private link. Offering the plan is free to the employer, simply signing up qualifies employees for a 10% discount. Contact Travis at DentalCoverage@7to7Dental.com to compare the value of 7to7 Dental’s plan with the cost of current dental coverage.

That’s what Emily Griffith did. She owns Every Moment Counts Photobooth and found 7to7 Dental’s plan suited her needs. “I have loved having peace of mind with the dental membership program,” Emily said. “It has been so easy to use and allowed me to keep up with my dental care without any stress. Definitely a great option for small businesses.”

The professionals at 7to7 Dental & Orthodontics care about your oral health and are available 7 a.m.- 7 p.m., seven days a week, for dentistry for the whole family and emergencies. 7to7 Dental is a local business grown in 14 years from the practice of one dentist and six staff, which now employs 240 San Antonio community members. Co-Owners Tiffany Winburn, D.M.D., and Justin Coke live in Stone Oak with their families and are part of the community.

210-495-2000 www.7to7Dental.com Facebook: 7 to 7 Dental & Orthodontics Instagram: @7to7Dental Call or book online with ease

Community Calendar

Presented by Frost

Activities at the Walker Ranch Senior Center — Monday - Friday, 7:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Hot meals served daily from 11 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. for qualifying seniors and their spouses. Exercise, field trips, bingo, loteria, movies, arts and crafts, free health and wellness screenings vary daily. 835 W. Rhapsody 78216; 210-207-5280.

Stone Oak Rotary Club – Tuesdays, noon -1 p.m. Guest speakers weekly. Dona Tota, 923 Loop 1604 W. #115 78232; www.stoneoaksarotary.org

Shooting Leagues and Classes – Days and times vary. Introduction to firearms, CDL classes, date nights, kids’ classes, men’s events and shooting sports leagues for all skill levels on an indoor range. Buck and Doe’s Mercantile, 24250 U.S. 281 78258; 820-980-3637.

Tejas Rodeo – Saturdays through November, 5 p.m. – 1 a.m. Enjoy live rodeo action: bronco riding, team roping, barrel racing, mutton bustin’ and calf scramble. Live music at 9 p.m. Tejas Rodeo Company, 401 Obst Road 78163; www.tejasrodeo.com.

Zoo Boo! – Through Monday, Oct. 31, 9 a.m.- 5 p.m. Wear your costume at this fun, non-scary Halloween event for the entire family. San Antonio Zoo, 3903 N. St. Mary's St. 78212; www.sazoo.org.

Lush: Twilight in the Garden – Third Thursdays through October, 6-9 p.m. A monthly festival celebrating abundance in the garden. Extended evening hours, live music, lawn games, bloom displays. San Antonio Botanical Gardens, 555 Funston Place 78209; www.sabot.org.

Dripping Springs Pumpkin Festival Through Monday, Oct. 31, 10 a.m. – 7 p.m., closed Tuesdays. Family friendly fall-themed event featuring local acoustic musical performances. Dr. Pound Historical Farmstead, 419 Founders Park Road Dripping Springs 78620; drippingspringspumpkinfestival.com.

Free Driving Clinic for Newly Licensed Teens – Saturday, Oct. 1, Sunday, Oct. 2. Free half-day driving skills sessions presented by the Ford Fund. Morning sessions, 7:30 a.m. –noon; Afternoon sessions, 1-5:30 p.m. Teens improve skills like hazard recognition, vehicle handling, speed and space management in a safe, controlled environment with professional instructors. 2042 Ackerman Road 78219; www.drivingskillsforlife.com

S.T.A.G.E. Theater Presents Plaza Suite Thursday, Oct. 6 – Sunday, Oct. 23, 8 p.m. Doors open at 7:00, matinees Sundays 2 p.m., doors open at 1 p.m. Classic comedy presented by the Bulverde Community Theatre. STAGE, 1300 Bulverde Road 78163; www.stagebulverde.org

Single Professionals Networking Meeting – Friday, Oct. 7, 4:30-6:30 p.m. Join other 55+ widowed, divorced and single mature professionals for conversation, libations and food in a relaxed, social setting. The Roo Pub, 19314 U.S. Highway 281 78259; www.spn-sa.org

John Mulaney – Friday, Oct. 7, 7 p.m. and 10 p.m. Join the Emmy-winning comedian for his From Scratch tour. HEB Performance Hall, Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, 100 Auditorium Circle 78205; www.tobincenter.org.

7th Annual Monarch Butterfly and Pollinator

Festival – Saturday, Oct. 8, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Dust off your wings for events like the People for Pollinators Procession, monarch tagging demos, waggle dancing, Forever Journey altar and educational booths. Brackenridge Park Conservancy, 3700 N. St. Mary’s St. 78212; 210-826-1412.

Battle of Hillotes 13.1, 10 K, 5K - Saturday, Oct. 8, Half Marathon: 7:31 a.m., 10K: 8:10 a.m., 5 K: 8:25 a.m. Get ready for marathon season on a course known for its hills. Race three in the Alamo Beer Series. El Chaparral, 15103 Bandera Road, Helotes 78023; www.scallywompus.com.

Single Professionals Networking Meeting

Friday, Oct. 14, 4:30-6:30 p.m. Join other 55+ widowed, divorced and single mature professionals for conversation, libations and food in a relaxed, social setting. Cover 3, 1806 N. Loop 1604 E. 78232; www.spn-sa.org

Cinderella performed by Ballet San Antonio

Friday, Oct. 14, 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, Oct. 15, 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.; Sunday, Oct. 16, 2 p.m. Premiere performance of newly adapted story, set to the score by Prokofiev. HEB Performance Hall, Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, 100 Auditorium Circle 78205; www.tobincenter.org

Reagan Rattler Dance Clinic – Saturday, Oct. 15, 7:30 – 11 a.m. Learn a halftime routine to perform that night with Reagan Spirit Squads at the football game vs Johnson High School at 7 p.m. at Comalander Stadium. Ronald Reagan High School, 19000 Ronald Reagan Drive 78258; Facebook: @RRHSspirit.

Eddie & Vinnie at the Magik Theatre

Saturday, Oct. 15 – Friday, Oct. 28, days and times vary. Live theater production tells the story of basketball-dreaming Eddie, who struggles with dyslexia, and his pet gecko, Vinnie. The Magik Theatre, 420 S. Alamo St. 78205; magiktheatre.org

Feast of the Tabernacles at Cornerstone

Friday, Oct. 21- Sunday, Oct. 23. Three-day family friendly festival with food trucks, adult and kids’ rides, church services and worship performances led by nine-time Grammy nominee Natalie Grant and Ty Tribbett, culminating Sunday with a Night to Honor Israel. Fireworks Saturday night. Cornerstone Church, 18755 Stone Oak Parkway 78258; www.sacornerstone.org

Send your upcoming events to StoneOakInfo@gmail.com.

For more than 150 years, the way we treat our customers hasn’t changed—even when the way our customers bank with us has.

Visit us at 21011 US Highway 281 North in San Antonio or call (210) 220-6576.


Puppy Tales

The price of a pup is just the beginning. Do you have margin in your budget to pay for the cost of food, bed, toys, treats, collar, leash, license, boarding, grooming, medicine and veterinary bills? Like raising human children, furry family members are an expense. Make sure you consider the cost before committing.

While it’s easy to fall in love with a furry face, the American Kennel Club recommends selecting a purebred dog if you are concerned about size, coat, care requirements or temperament. The bonus of a purebred dog is that you will know what the cute puppy will look like and the kind of care he will need when he’s full grown.

Some questions you might ask:

How big will he grow to be?

It’s happened. You innocently walked past the pet store, and there they were – a litter of the cutest

little balls of fur you ever did see. There’s nothing more irresistible than a puppy. The waggy tail, the snuggly fur, the wet, pink tongue. But before you succumb to a serious case of puppy love, take a few minutes to consider whether a pup is a good fit for you and your family right now.

Puppies take work - that appeal can lose its luster if the little one continually piddles on your prized rug, chews your favorite shoes or whines all night. Walking, housebreaking, training – do you have the time and temperament to devote to the responsibilities – every day? You must be willing to invest the energy required to care for your furry family member, not just when he’s a puppy, but for the next 12-15 years of his life.

What will happen if work or activities keep you away all day and into the evening? Do you travel frequently? You can’t just leave a furry family member (and especially a little one) alone for long periods of time. You’ll need to arrange for a place for puppy to stay or someone to care for him in your absence.

Is this breed good with children?

Does this type of dog bark a lot?

Does this breed shed?

What type of grooming does it require?

How much exercise does this breed need?

If you do decide to plunge into pet parenthood, consider enrolling your newest family member in puppy training. Most pet stores offer an intro class to teach the basics of puppy-raising including housetraining, how to keep him from chewing and practical skills like coming when called. They also provide a great opportunity for pups (and their owners) to socialize. The AKC offers a training program that earns a S.T.A.R. Puppy distinction, which is the natural lead-in to the AKC’s Canine Good Citizen designation. The CGC Program lays the foundation for other AKC activities such as obedience, agility, tracking, and performance events.

Think carefully about all the factors so you can make a wise decision. You can always volunteer at a rescue or shelter if you need a puppy snuggle but aren’t able to commit. Purebred or rescue, there’s still nothing that tugs the heartstrings more than a puppy.

He’s Cute - But is Your Family Ready to Take on a Pup?
Watch Our Video! "Greetng from Camp!" FREE Sniff & Seek Enrichment with the purchase of (2) enrichment services.


that beneficiary designations override instructions left in a will or trust.

3. Not reviewing documents regularly. An estate plan should be reviewed every two-three years, when there’s a new child or grandchild, a significant increase or decrease in assets, new tax laws, or other major life changes. This ensures you are protecting your loved ones’ future because circumstances change over time.

Sadly, most Americans are indifferent to estate planning - at best - or completely ignore the

issue - at worst. When it comes to estate planning, there are some mistakes that you cannot afford to make. Below are five of the most critical estate planning mistakes:

1. Not having any estate plan. This is the biggest mistake, especially among younger professionals or young parents who assume they do not need one. Passing away intestate (without an estate plan) will result in state law deciding who ends up with what assets when you are gone. Even the care of your minor children is up to the courts.

2. Failing to properly handle paperwork. This is typically in the form of not updating beneficiary designations on insurance and retirement accounts. Some people may be surprised to learn

4. Not funding your trust. A trust relies on being “funded” (changing title of your assets to the trust) to operate correctly. If you pass away and leave an unfunded trust, your assets will be subject to a probate, which was what you were trying to avoid by creating a trust in the first place.

5. Too much given away, too soon. As much as half of inheritances are squandered shortly after being received, so it is important to plan your inheritance instructions over the course of the beneficiary’s lifetime to reduce the risk of this happening.

We can help!

Our attorneys can help you with your multigenerational planning. For assistance with these and other business law, tax planning, or estate planning matters, contact our office today!

We help clients that are ready to invest in their family and business to protect their wealth and save taxes.

Ivan Ramirez, Attorney at Law

The Law Office of Ivan Ramirez & Associates 18756 Stone Oak Pkwy, Suite 200 San Antonio, Texas 78258

Email: ivan@ram-law.com Website: www.ram-law.com Phone: 210-448-7755

The information provided is designed for general information only and is not intended to be legal advice, nor does it create an attorney client relationship. Consult an attorney before making any legal decisions based on your individual circumstances.

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