Dear Savvy Senior, What’s the best way to find good, trustworthy, qualified people who can help seniors with home chores or small jobs? Looking for Mom

Dear Looking,
Getting help at home for any number of household tasks is a lot easier than it use to be thanks to a number of web-based tools that can quickly and easily connect you and your mom to a wide variety of skilled, carefully vetted workers. Here’s what you should know.

Finding Qualified Help
One of the best ways to find qualified, reliable, trustworthy people that can help with home chores and other small jobs is through referrals from people you trust. But if your friends or family don’t have any recommendations, there are a number of online companies you can turn to now like TaskRabbit.com and Takl.com.
These are on-demand service companies that can quickly and easily connect you to skilled workers to handle a wide variety of household chores and small jobs, like cleaning and housekeeping, moving and packing, lawn and yard cleanup, handyman tasks, grocery shopping, running errands, furniture assembly, picture hanging, closet organizing, and much more.
TaskRabbit currently has more than 60,000 Taskers (workers) in 47 U.S. cities, while Takl currently serves 75 U.S. cities with around 35,000 workers.
All you need to do is download their app, or go to their website, and select the service your mom wants done and set a time when she would like the worker to show up. The software then matches your request and provides you a list of qualified, feedback rated workers (including their hourly rate) from which to choose. Once the job is complete, payment is done through the company’s app.
You should also know that all TaskerRabbit and Takl workers have to go through a thorough vetting process before they can join their respective company including extensive background checks.
If, however, you can’t find a skilled worker through TaskRabbit or Takl, or if they don’t serve your area, another option is Amazon Home Services at Amazon.com/services. Like TaskRabbit and Takl, Amazon will connect you to qualified workers that handle dozens of household chores and other small jobs.
Amazon also screens all workers through media searches, online interviews, reference checks, and background checks. And all experts need to have licenses and insurance.
To purchase and book a service, you can either buy a pre-packaged service with a fixed price (like two hours of cleaning) or you can submit a custom request and receive estimates. When booking, you select three different dates and time frames and the pro confirms an appointment. All payment is done through your Amazon account.

Need a Tradesman
If your mom primarily needs of a tradesman like a plumber, electrician, painter, roofer or carpenter for home repairs or remodel projects, you should also check HomeAdvisor.com and AngiesList.com. Both of these sites can connect you with prescreened, customer-rated service professionals in your area for free.

Senior Specific
Another option you should know about is AskUmbrella.com, which is a fee-based membership service for seniors 60-plus that provides qualified, vetted workers to do small jobs in and around the house for only $16 per hour. Currently available in New York, they are expanding nationally over the next year.

Lower-Income Option
If your mom is on a tight budget, you should also contact her nearby Area Aging Agency (call 800-677-1116), who can refer you to services in her area, if available. For example, some communities have volunteer programs that provide chore and handyman services to help seniors in need. And some local non-profit’s offer residential repair services that offer seniors minor upgrades and adaptations to their homes.
Send your senior questions to: Savvy Senior, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070, or visit SavvySenior.org. Jim Miller is a contributor to the NBC Today show and author of “The Savvy Senior” book.

OKC Lion’s Club Board Member Tom Springer presents a $6,000 financial gift to Metro Tech Superintendent Bob Parrish and Associate Superintendent Brian Ruttman.

The Oklahoma City Lion’s Club gifted $6,000 to the Metro Tech Foundation, funds that will be utilized to cover costs outside tuition such as uniforms, tools, certification fees and equipment.
OKC Lion’s Club Board Member Tom Springer said historically the club has supported college scholarships for area high school students and had a desire to help adult students pursuing technical education as well.
“Many of the Lion Club members attended vocational school at some point in our lives and wanted to support students who graduate with a trade and might need a little help getting started in their career. Welding tools, nursing accessories, certification test fees – we don’t want any student to miss an opportunity due to lack of funds at the beginning of their career,” Mr. Springer said.
Metro Tech Foundation Executive Director Ashleigh Gibson expressed gratitude for a gift that will allow the Foundation to remove financial barriers from student success.
“These financial gifts often make the difference between giving up and succeeding for students who are working hard to achieve their dreams,” Ms. Gibson said.
Metro Tech is an Oklahoma technology school that offers free tuition to Oklahoma City Public Schools, Crooked Oak Public Schools and Millwood Public Schools students. Full-time and part-time training is offered for adult students, as well as customized Business & Industry training.

Photography and Text by Terry “Travels with Terry” Zinn t4z@aol.com

When I visited Albany, New York, I just had to explore a little farther north to the Lake George area. There I found the small town “Festival of the Lake,” in progress next to the southern end of the expansive lake itself.
My home base was the Fort William Henry Hotel with an upper story lake view. It’s so nice to wake up and go to bed with the ever-changing view of water and distant mountains. The hotel offers several styles of accommodations, but staying in the main historic building was optimal, and the prime location for viewing the weekend fireworks over the lake from the room.
I had an unpleasant lunch at the little snack bar café on the waterfront where the manager was almost rude and not accommodating to this paying customer. But with that unpleasantness aside, the rest of my tourist visit to Lake George was very pleasant.
Up the lake side road is the legendary and historic Sagamore Hotel, where you must stop in for a tour or definitely a lunch. The Sagamore opened its doors in 1883 with luxurious Lake George accommodations that attracted a select, international clientele, and quickly became the social epicenter for the wealthy residents of Green Island and Millionaires’ Row. Twice damaged by fire in 1893 and 1914, The Sagamore was fully reconstructed in 1930 through the efforts of Dr. William G. Beckers of New York City, one of the hotel’s early stockholders, and William H. Bixby, a St. Louis industrialist. Together they financed the cost despite the period’s bleak economic climate and The Sagamore continued to thrive, hosting the National Governor’s Conference in 1954, which was presided over by Vice President Richard M. Nixon and Governor Thomas E. Dewey.
A staff member of the Sagamore, suggested I travel, if time allowed to go a bit farther north, to the northern most part of Lake George and visit the Fort Ticonderoga area. I had always heard about this revolutionary war locale and it was enlightening to tour the reconstructed fort and see its importance for guarding the waterfront. Approaching the Park area I came across a fox hunt, complete with riders and hounds in progress, temporarily halting car traffic. It was as if I was transported back in time.
Another dining treat was the Algonquin Restaurant at Bolton Landing, near the Sagamore Hotel, where locals take their boats, docked them by the water front restaurant, enjoy a meal or cocktail, and then retreat to their lake homes via the water, before the sun completely sets. Boating to them is as casual as taking the family car out to dinner ~ so quaint and a hint at the local lake culture.
I enjoyed dining at the very popular Lake George’s Marios Italian Restaurant, and at the Lake George Dinner Theater, where the play was well done and my congenial extemporaneous senior citizen ladies table mates, was more entertainment. The Lake George man street plays host to a number of assorted shops and eateries, including the wine tastings at the Adirondack Winery.
They say you must get on the lake to experience Lake George and the Lake George Steamboat Company fills that order. With several specialty cruises or a casual noon time cruise, you get a different perspective of the Lake and the mountains. Establish in 1817, the Company has been operating on Lake George for over200 years. They offer a number of boats including the Minne Ha Ha, The MV Mohican or the flagship, Lac du Saint Sacrement.817, the Lake George Steamboat Company has been operating on Lake George for over 200
While I was at Lake George in late September, I found I was at the end of their season, so you may want to arrive earlier in the year, go now, or plan now for your spring/summer upstate New York getaway. America and upstate New York has so much to explore and enjoy.
Before you go check out:

Patti Townsend of Milburn is being recognized as a Significant Woman in Oklahoma Agriculture. She is shown here with her husband Gayland and three sons Philip, Charles and Steven.

For Patti Townsend, her entire life could be described by these two words.
After enduring the drought of the Dust Bowl, Townsend’s father, an Oklahoma farmer and coal miner, decided to move his family west to California during World War II. There was a need for work in the shipyards because of the war, so he was certain a better life would await them there.
“My father just threw up his hands and said, ‘This farming is not worth it right now,’” she said.
Townsend grew up in San Francisco, a much different sight from the New Mexico cattle ranches she would soon call home.
After marrying Gayland Townsend, the two began ranching together in Albuquerque and then Roswell. They raised commercial cattle before incorporating Brangus into their herd, eventually owning nearly 800 head. The Townsends moved several times while in New Mexico, each time to a bigger ranch, before relocating to Oklahoma in 2004.
“I was chief cook and bottle washer,” Patti Townsend laughed, pointing out that she worked more than everyone else because she had two jobs: ranching and cooking.
She added, “They counted on me being out there helping them with cattle and then having dinner on the table too.”
“I wasn’t a hired hand,” she laughed. “I was a free hand. Let’s put it that way. I was out there working cattle and then having pot roast in the oven.”
She would have beans on the stove and cornbread in the oven while she worked cattle.
“They’d send me up there about 10 minutes before, and then I put everything on the table,” Townsend said. “They ate. I cleaned up. I was back out there in the corral.”
While the Townsends ranched in Roswell on the “home place,” Patti Townsend became heavily involved with the New Mexico Cowbelles. She served on the board, as secretary and as president.
“I did everything they asked me to,” she said.
Townsend worked beef cook-offs, helped the New Mexico Beef Council – where she also chaired the board – at the state fair, and helped put on the beef ambassador contest. She traveled to each region of the state giving workshops, ran booths at the state capitol, and visited schools to teach children about beef cattle. She also led farm tours to show the public more about the industry.
She recalls one lady being so excited – and scared – to give a cow a shot for the first time.
“She did it. She ended up giving that cow a shot, and then she raised her hands up and just thought that was the greatest thing in the world that she gave that cow a shot,” Townsend laughed.
It was the education and promotion of agriculture, specifically beef cattle, that drove Townsend.
She was involved on the local, state and national level. She was named the 1999 New Mexico Cowbelle of the Year and served as president. She also served as region director of the American National CattleWomen for six years and was president of ANCW in 2003.
Townsend, who “to this day still can’t believe it,” was named the 2011 ANCW Outstanding CattleWoman of the Year.
“It was the best honor I could have in my life,” she said.
The “home place” or “family ranch” as Patti Townsend calls it, is where the Townsends lived for about 21 years and raised three sons: Philip, Charles and Steven. It is also where Townsend started her sheep herd, which grew to nearly 600 head over a 20 year period.
“The boys had them [the sheep] for ag,” she said. “It was an ag project, and course they showed sheep too. The oldest one took off to college, and he had to sell his part of the sheep to the other two. And when the second one went off to college, he had to sell his part to the youngest one. And then when the youngest one when off to college, there was nobody to buy them but Momma. So I bought his share, and so those were Momma’s sheep now.”
“There was a herd of them by the time we finished with them because they can have triplets,” she laughed.
Her sons were all heavily involved in FFA, showing cattle, pigs and sheep. All three received their American FFA Degrees, and Charles was a state FFA officer.
All three also grew up to pursue agriculture. Charles is a veterinarian, Philip is a rancher and fishermen’s guide, and Steven runs the ranch, which is now located in Milburn, Okla.
“We started getting bigger on account of the youngest son [Steven] wanting to be a rancher, and so that’s the reason we sold the family ranch,” she said. “He’s always wanted to be a rancher since he was 3 years old.”
The Townsends moved to a bigger ranch outside of Roswell first before moving the cattle to Oklahoma.
Why would a successful ranching family decide to move 500 miles to begin the challenge of raising cattle in a completely new state?
The answer can be found in one word: drought.
After year five of what would be an eight-year intense drought, the Townsends were at a crossroads. Their time in New Mexico had set them up for success in Oklahoma.
“A man walked up to us and wanted to buy the ranch,” she said, “and my husband said, ‘Sold.’ So we bought a place here in Oklahoma, and that’s where we are now. We still have Brangus cattle. We raise about 600 head here.”
As the ranches got bigger and more help came in the form of her sons, Patti Townsend wasn’t needed as much. However, she never got too far away from the ranch.
“I stayed involved with the cattle, and when we culled cows and stuff like that my husband wanted me out there working to make sure I was satisfied with what they sent to the sale and what they kept for heifers. They didn’t sell my pets. Let me put it that way,” Townsend laughed.
She became very involved with the Oklahoma CattleWomen and was slated to become an officer here too, before deciding she was needed more at home to take care of her husband after his heart attack.
“I’m getting back involved with them again, but I am not moving up to be president so leave that off your list,” she laughed.
She has truly loved the ranching life – where she spent her entire career – and is hopeful that her grandchildren and great-grandchildren will pursue it.
“It is a beautiful life for a family, and I would suggest it for any young couple that wants to start living on the ranch to try it,” she said. “Get them out of the city. Put them on the ranch or the farm, and it’s a hard life. I’m not going to say it’s an easy life. We had some rough times. We had some big rough times, but we made it. We just stuck together and made it. I wouldn’t trade it for a billion dollars, or a trillion.”
It has been almost 50 years since the Townsends first started ranching together.
“It was fun days. I enjoyed it. I really did. It’s just something I did, and I was young enough to do it. Don’t ask me to now,” she laughed.
Patti Townsend, now nearly 78, reflects back on her days on the home place and says every memory was great – whether it was good or bad. She would certainly love to be working underneath the Oklahoma sky.
“I wish I was 10 years younger,” she said. “I’d be out there hand in hand. I’d still be the chief cook and bottle washer.”

Norman Regional Health System LPN Sherry Potter gets some love from coworker Lisa Marti, whom Potter helped revive at work.

by Bobby Anderson,
Staff Writer

It was like any other day at work for Lisa Marti on May 9, except it would be one that would change her life.
Marti, 39, a medical assistant at Norman Regional’s Endocrinology Associates, was found slumped over in her chair at the nurse’s station by two coworkers.
After finding her unconscious, Kayla Masters, medical assistant, and Sherry Potter, LPN, transported Marti to a treatment room. They quickly realized Marti had no pulse and wasn’t breathing.
Marti had gone into cardiac arrest, with no previously known heart conditions. They immediately began CPR and called 911. Before first responders arrived, other members of the endocrinology team, including Dr. Lubna Mirza, Michelle Jackson, Estelle Cappony and Alicia Glenn stepped in to help any way they could, and brought in cardiologist Dr. Michael Villano and his staff from the clinic next door.
“It was a nightmare—I don’t even know how to describe it,” Masters said. “It was pretty devastating to see her like that. A lot of us didn’t know if she was going to make it. It was the worst thing I’ve ever dealt with in a work setting, but I think we handled it very professionally. We acted promptly and did the best we could.”
Potter, who previously worked on a cardiology floor in a hospital, said trying to revive someone she knew was different from anything she has ever experienced with a patient.
“It was more intense. It’s always in the back of my mind—wondering if (Marti) is okay and thinking about all the ‘what ifs,’” Potter said. “Things happen for a reason. (Marti) asked to go home earlier that day because she didn’t feel well, but we didn’t send her home—I guess that was so we could save her life.”
Judy and Henry Lantz, Marti’s parents, were two of multiple family members to receive a call from the endocrinology staff. They immediately rushed to the hospital, as did Marti’s daughter Kaitlynn and her son Tyler.
“It was the most terrifying day of our lives,” Lantz said.
When Marti’s parents arrived to the Emergency Department, Marti was continuing to slip in and out of consciousness. She was shortly moved to the Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit (CVICU).
“There were some good moments and a lot of bad ones,” Judy said. “It would seem like she was getting better then she would code again. It’s not easy to be holding your daughter’s head when she dies, especially over and over again.”
Marti coded about 10 times in total before cardiologist Dr. Muhammad Salim put in a permanent pacemaker for Marti, which stabilized her and her heart function.
Although Marti doesn’t remember much of what happened, she said it’s “very scary” to hear about it all, but she received a ton of support from family, friends, coworkers, and her care team that helped get her by.
“I didn’t have anybody who disappointed me in my care here. They offered all of the support and answers I needed,” she said.
Marti has two children and two grandchildren to live for. She was able to return to work on Monday, June 18.
“I’m just happy to be alive and to have this second chance at life,” she said.
Nephrologist Dr. David Williams is working with Marti on her follow-up care to determine the cause of her event. She said she is very grateful for his kindness and care.
“Hopefully we’ll have answers soon,” Marti said.

The Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority (OMMA), with assistance from the Office of Management and Enterprise Services (OMES), has selected Complia as the provider for compliance and licensing management software.
Using a statewide contract, the Denver-based company was selected through a review process that determined it was best equipped to meet OMMA’s specifications and time requirements. The passage of SQ788 tasks the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) with having an application process in place by August 25 for patients, caregivers and businesses to apply for licenses and for the agency to collect application fees. OSDH created the OMMA to regulate the medical marijuana program.
Complia is a group of compliance officers and technologists with a background in cannabis licensing systems and government software.
“With this agreement in place, we are continuing our commitment to having the structure in place to meet all of the requirements of SQ788,” said OSDH Interim Commissioner Tom Bates. “We are deeply appreciative to OMES for providing their expertise in evaluating the vendor products and for helping select the right fit to implement the online application system. They were able to accelerate the process in order for us to meet the challenging deadlines we face.”

Kevin L. Lewis, MD, has recently been named Regional President of the SSM Health Medical Group. Dr. Lewis returns to SSM Health Oklahoma to resume the role he held previously from April, 2016 to June, 2017 as Regional President of the SSM Health Medical Group. Dr. Lewis will be responsible for the growth and management of physician practices, as well as post-acute and ambulatory operations across the system. Lewis comes to SSM Health St. Anthony from the multi-hospital Parkridge Health System based in Chattanooga, Tenn., where he was Chief Medical Officer. He received his medical degree from the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio

Kevin L. Lewis, MD, has recently been named Regional President of the SSM Health Medical Group.
Dr. Lewis returns to SSM Health Oklahoma to resume the role he held previously from April, 2016 to June, 2017 as Regional President of the SSM Health Medical Group. Dr. Lewis will be responsible for the growth and management of physician practices, as well as post-acute and ambulatory operations across the system.
Lewis comes to SSM Health St. Anthony from the multi-hospital Parkridge Health System based in Chattanooga, Tenn., where he was Chief Medical Officer. He received his medical degree from the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio

Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation scientist Holly Van Remmen, Ph.D.

The Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation has received a $600,000 grant from The Mary K. Chapman Foundation to support aging research.
The grant will help fund age-related disease research and help OMRF recruit a pair of new scientists to its Aging and Metabolism Research Program, which takes a comprehensive approach to studying diseases of aging, including age-related muscle loss, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and arthritis.
“Aging is the number one risk factor for a number of debilitating diseases that affect our growing elderly population,” said Aging and Metabolism Research Program Chair Holly Van Remmen, Ph.D. “This gift will allow us to expand and extend our work to better understand basic mechanisms of aging and how they impact age-related diseases, such as heart disease, arthritis, age-related muscle loss and neurodegenerative diseases.”
Mary K. Chapman established her foundation upon her death in 2002 as a way to continue supporting causes associated with her personal interests. Chapman, an Oklahoma native and University of Tulsa graduate, made many of her gifts in Oklahoma and Colorado, where her late husband, oilman and philanthropist H. Allen Chapman, was born.
The foundation donates to a wide variety of charitable organizations. But as a former nurse, Chapman had a keen interest in supporting health-related causes.
As a result, said Chapman Foundation trustee Donne Pitman, the foundation is devoted to continuing Chapman’s legacy of giving to health and medical research.
“The hope is that these new investigators can generate new ideas and approaches to diseases of aging, like Alzheimer’s and dementia,” said Pitman. “These are devastating and common diseases that impact not only the individual, but also everyone around them. Aging research is a critical need for public health, and we want to be a part of the solution.”

Darlene Franklin is both a resident of a nursing home in Moore, and a full-time writer.

By Darlene Franklin

I’ve never been to war. Aside from a few skirmishes, neither had anyone in Israel’s army. After being freed from Egypt and spending forty years wandering, the desert-hardened Israelite army prepared to fight for the land promised to them by God. How did they feel? Nervous, anxious for their first battle, wanting to get it over with, so they could get on with their new lives?  I’ve never been to war. Aside from a few skirmishes, neither had anyone in Israel’s army. After being freed from Egypt and spending forty years wandering, the desert-hardened Israelite army prepared to fight for the land promised to them by God. How did they feel? Nervous, anxious for their first battle, wanting to get it over with, so they could get on with their new lives?  They set up camp, all 600,000 of them, spreading out from Jericho’s front gates. Expecting war, imagine how they felt when all they did was to march around the walls one time every day each day for a week with trumpets sounding. You may know the story. At the end of the week, they marched seven times, the instruments blared, the men shouted—and the walls fell down. The battle ended before they threw a spear (Joshua 6).Centuries later, the judge Gideon led a small group of three hundred men to fight the Midianites, Amalekites, and others who’d oppressed the Jewish people. Again, God used the weapon of music—a blaring trumpet—to defeat the opposition (Judges 7).During Jesus’ final week on earth, the crowds sang hosanna when He rode into Jerusalem on the back of a donkey. A few days later, the disciples “sang a hymn and departed” after the Last Supper, beginning the countdown to Jesus’ death. Is it any wonder that Isaiah links strength and music?Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid; for the Lord JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; He also is become my salvation. (Isaiah 12:2 KJV)His words echo Moses’ song after crossing the Red Sea (Exodus 15:2,), as well as the psalmist’s words in Psalm 118:14.  Music composed at the height of war has become national anthems (the United States’ Star Spangled Banner and France’s La Marseillaise). In the mid-twentieth century, songs like “We Shall Overcome” played a vital role in the civil rights movement. It’s easier to imagine the connection between music and patriotism than between music and war. There are narratives (probably not factual) of children marching to the Crusades while singing “Fairest Lord Jesus.” Many translations of Isaiah 12:2 plainly place music in war’s arsenal (the Lord is my strength and my song, see the KJV and many others.)  Some changed the English word from “music” to “defense” instead. None of the commentaries or lexicons I consulted gave me a clue as two such different words have been used. Neither commentaries and Hebrew word meanings helped me understand how the same word means two such different things, or why the translators changed their work. Was it possible that music was defense?It is for me. When I’m tired, discouraged, unable to sleep, I hum “Abide with me.” If rejoicing in God’s good gifts? How about “Joy to the world, the Lord is come?”When I checked a website for hymns based on Isaiah 12:2, I found over over thirty songs. Here are a few of my favorite phrases: “Jesus! ’’Tis music in the sinner’s ears, ‘Tis life, and health, and peace”—Isaac Watts“I am trusting Thee for power, Thine can never fail”—Frances Ridley HarvergalAnyone who’s ever been moved by a song on the radio or at a concert can testify to the power of music. It slips into the heart, curls up next to the spirit and warms it even before we take in the words. Who doesn’t want to stand and shout when they hear “I’m Proud to be an American” on the 4th of July? Not to mention Katherine Lee Bates’ immortal words about “America the Beautiful.” Music has the capacity to bypass logic and doubt and stir our worship to God. If we wonder what to sing about, we can look at everything we learn about God in Isaiah 12:2. Our Creator’s creation calls for songs of praise. Yahweh, the great I AM, is the beginning of everything and the source of songs of praise. He was Salvation for those before Jesus took on human form, born of the virgin Mary. The love demonstrated at the cross “demands my soul, my life, my all.” (Isaac Watts) God my salvation and strength is also my defense. Let His praise be continually on my lips.

Darlene Franklin is both a resident of a nursing home in Moore, and a full-time writer.