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Tell Santa I tried to be nice
12/23/2020 9:09:46 PM

Dr. James L. Snyder   THE PARSONAGE—It’s that time of the year when the conversation around the dinner table in the Parsonage has to do with naughty or nice. I must admit it's not my favorite conversation because what is naughty, and what is nice? That all depends on who you're talking to. The Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage has a different definition of these words than I do. According to my wife, nice has to do with broccoli, and naughty has to do with Apple fritter. At least I can’t. I'm afraid I have to disagree with this because as far...

After 110K virus deaths, nursing homes face vaccine fears
12/16/2020 6:54:06 PM

By Bernard Condon and Matt Sedensky   After 110,000 deaths ravaged the nation’s nursing homes and pushed them to the front of the vaccine line, they now face a vexing problem: Skeptical residents and workers balking at getting the shots. Being first has come with persistent fears that the places hit hardest in the pandemic—accounting for nearly 40% of the nation’s death toll—could be put at risk again by vaccines sped into development in months rather than years. Some who live and work in homes question if enough testing was done on the elderly, if enough...

The Housing Crisis Harming Our Children
12/16/2020 6:53:07 PM

By Marian Wright Edelman FOUNDER AND PRESIDENT EMERITA   Home for the holidays. The COVID-19 crisis has disrupted many Americans’ ability to travel home and visit families over the holidays in the usual ways, but for millions of families it is threatening to do much worse. In September, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced an order prohibiting most evictions nationwide for the rest of the year, bringing desperately needed protection to the 30 to 40 million renters at risk of losing their homes during the...

Savvy Senior - How Robotic Pets Can Help Isolated Seniors Avoid Loneliness
12/16/2020 6:52:14 PM

Dear Savvy Senior, I recently read an article about robotic pets being a great substitute for pet-loving seniors who can’t have or take care of a pet any longer. What do you think of this? My mother, who has some dementia, is living in an assisted living facility that doesn’t allow pets. And because of COVID, we haven’t been allowed inside the facility to visit her since March. I’ve been thinking about getting her a robot pet to help cheer her up but would like to know if they are worth buying, and if so, where can I go to find one. Locked Out...

Christmas is more than jingle, jingle
12/16/2020 6:47:58 PM

Dr. James L. Snyder   THE PARSONAGE—I have been trying lately to remember my first Christmas. I know my memory isn't perfect, but I thought maybe I could bring up some old memories of my first Christmas. Unfortunately, I couldn't think of a thing about that first Christmas of mine. Of course, it might be that I was only five months old at the time. Still, I tried to remember some of those old Christmases in the past. Down through the years, I have celebrated more Christmases than I want to let on. It's not that I'm old; I just haven't died...

Savvy Senior - Noticing memory problems? What to do next
12/9/2020 4:18:25 PM

Dear Savvy Senior, My mom, who’s 76, has become more forgetful lately and is worried she may be getting Alzheimer’s disease. What resources can you recommend to help us get a handle on this? Oldest Daughter   Dear Oldest, Many seniors worry about memory lapses as they get older, fearing it may be the first signs of Alzheimer’s disease or some other type of dementia. To get some insight on the seriousness of your mom’s problem, here are some key warning signs to be vigilant of and some resources you can turn to for help.    Warning...

World War II vet beats COVID-19, marks 104th birthday
12/9/2020 4:14:52 PM

By Jay Reeves   BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP)—An Alabama man who spent World War II repairing bomb-damaged trains in France recovered from a fight with COVID-19 in time to mark his 104th birthday on Thursday. Major Wooten was physically drained and a little fuzzy mentally after battling the new coronavirus but appears to be on the mend, said granddaughter Holley Wooten McDonald. “I'm just thankful that they were able to treat him so quickly and we were able to get him tested,” said McDonald, adding: “It's amazing that a 104 year old survived...

It was a shoofly pie moment
12/9/2020 4:13:49 PM

Dr. James L. Snyder   During holiday seasons, I enjoy indulging in special food. My favorite during this time of year is the Shoofly Pie. Nothing hits the spot quite like this. Although the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage restricts this kind of culinary activity during the rest of the year, I tried to get a pass for it during the holidays. I don't care what holiday it is, a holiday is a holiday and deserves special food. I don't remember when I had my first shoofly pie, I only focus on my next piece. When I first brought it into the home, my wife asked me what...

Lifting all of our children above the scratch-line
12/9/2020 4:01:57 PM

By Marian Wright Edelman FOUNDER AND PRESIDENT EMERITA   LOHAD, USA—My dear and much beloved preacher teacher friend Dr. Samuel DeWitt Proctor was a great historically Black college president, Peace Corps leader in Africa, and pastor of the historic Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem, New York. He was also a very dear friend and spiritual mentor. He preached a great sermon at the Children’s Defense Fund (CDF) Haley Farm’s opening as a center for servant leadership development and advocacy for children and others left behind which I share portions of every holy...

Savvy Senior - How to Write an Online Will
12/3/2020 3:53:33 PM

Dear Savvy Senior, Writing a will has never been a high priority to me but this lingering coronavirus crisis has changed my thinking. Can you recommend some good do-it-yourself resources to help me write a simple will? Getting Older   Dear Getting, The coronavirus crisis has changed the way a lot of people look at things, including wills. Currently, fewer than half of American adults have prepared a will. But having a last will and testament is important because it ensures that your money and property will be distributed to the people you want to receive it after your...