Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, April 2, 2022

MVNews this week:  Page 10

Mountain Views-News Saturday, April 2, 2022 


Dear Savvy Senior:
I will be 65 and eligible for Medicare in a few months and am interested in getting a Medicare Advantage 
plan to cover my health care and medications. What tips can you provide to help me pick a plan?
Ready to Retire 

Dear Ready: 

Medicare Advantage plans have become very popular 
among retirees over the past 15 years, as nearly half of 
all new Medicare enrollees are signing up for Advantage 
plans, which accounts for about 42 percent of the entire 
Medicare market. Here are some tips and tools to help 
you pick a plan that fits your needs. 

First, let’s start with a quick review. Medicare Advantage 
plans (also known as Medicare Part C) are government approved health plans sold by private insurance 
companies that you can choose in place of original Medicare. The vast majority of Advantage plans are 
managed-care policies such as HMOs or PPOs that require you to get your care within a network of doctors. 

If you join an Advantage plan, the plan will provide all of your Part A (hospital insurance) and Part B (medical 
insurance) coverage like original Medicare does. But many plans also offer extra benefits like dental, 
hearing and vision coverage along with gym/fitness memberships, and most plans include prescription 
drug coverage too. 

Medicare Advantage plans are also cheaper than if you got original Medicare, plus a separate Part D drug 
plan and a Medigap policy. Many Advantage plans have $0 or low monthly premiums and don’t always have 
a deductible, but they also typically have a high out-of-pocket maximum. In 2021, Advantage plan participants 
on average were responsible for a maximum of around $5,100 for in-network care, and about $9,200 
when out-of-network care is included. 

How to Choose 

To help you pick a plan, a good first step is to call the office managers of the doctors you use and find out 
which Advantage plans they accept, and which ones they recommend. Then go to the Medicare Plan Finder 
tool at to compare Advantage plans in your area. This tool provides a five-star 
rating system that evaluates each plan based on past customer satisfaction and quality of care the plan delivers. 
When comparing, here are some key points to consider: 

Total costs: Look at the plan’s entire pricing package, not just the premiums and deductibles. Compare the 
maximum out-of-pocket costs plus the copays and coinsurance charged for doctor office visits, hospital 
stays, visits to specialists, prescription drugs and other medical services. This is important because if you 
choose an Advantage plan, you’re not allowed to purchase a Medigap policy, which means you’ll be responsible 
for paying these expenses out of your own pocket. 

Drug coverage: Check the plan’s formulary – the list of prescription drugs covered – to be sure all the medications 
you take are covered without excessive co-pays or requirements that you try less expensive drugs 

Dental, vision and hearing: Many Advantage plans come with dental, vision and hearing benefits, but are 
usually limited. Get the details on what exactly is covered. 

Coverage away from home: Most Advantage plans limit you to using in-network doctors only within a service 
area or geographic region, so find out what’s covered if you need medical care when you’re away from 

Out-of-network coverage: Check to see what’s covered if you want to see a specialist in a hospital that is not 
in a plan’s network. You can get a list of doctors and hospitals that take part in a plan on the plan’s website. 

Need Help? 

If you need help choosing a plan, contact your State Health Insurance Assistance Program at 
or call 877-839-2675. Also see the HealthMetrix Research 2022 Cost Comparisons Report at Medicare- that lists the best Advantage plans based on health status. 

Send your senior questions to: Savvy Senior, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070, or visit Jim Miller is a 
contributor to the NBC Today show and author of “The Savvy Senior” book. 


 By Marc Garlett 


Unless you’ve created an estate plan that works 
to keep your family out of court, when you die 
(or become incapacitated) many of your assets 
must go through probate before those assets can 
be distributed to your heirs. Like most court 
proceedings, probate can be time-consuming, 
costly, and open to the public, and because of 
this, avoiding probate—and keeping your family 
out of court—is often a central goal of estate 

To spare your loved one’s the time, cost, and 
stress inherent to probate, you can spend a little 
time and effort planning now. 

How To Avoid Probate 

Before we discuss the more advanced ways you 
can use estate planning to allow your loved ones 
to avoid probate, it’s important to point out that 
not all of your assets will have to go through 
the probate process—and that’s true even if you 
don’t have any estate plan at all. 

Assets That Do Not Require Probate: Certain 
assets, such as those with beneficiary designations 
like 401(k)s, IRAs, and the proceeds from 
life insurance policies, will pass directly to the 
individuals or organizations you designated as 
your beneficiary, without the need for any additional 
planning (unless your named beneficiary 
is a minor child, then you will need additional 

Outside of assets with beneficiary designations, 
other assets that do not go through probate include 
assets with a right of survivorship, such 
as property held in joint tenancy, tenancy by 
the entirety, and community property with the 
right of survivorship. These assets automatically 
pass to the surviving co-owner(s) when you die, 
without the need for probate. 

However, it’s critical to note here that if you 
name your “estate'' as the beneficiary of any of 
these assets, those assets will go through probate 
before being distributed. The same goes if 
you overlook a beneficiary designation, or if you 
die at the same time as a joint property owner—
each of those assets will also go through probate, 
even though they have beneficiary designations. 

In addition, we generally recommend that you 
do not rely on beneficiary designations to handle 
the distribution of your assets. These designations 
give you little to no control over how 

your assets are distributed, and they can result 
in negative outcomes you did not intend, especially 
if you have a blended family with children 
from a prior marriage or if you have no children 
at all. 

Although there are several different types of assets 
that automatically bypass probate, the majority 
of your assets will require slightly more 
advanced levels of planning to ensure your 
loved ones can immediately access them, without 
the need for any court proceedings in the 
event something happens to you. The primary 
estate planning tool for this purpose are trusts. 

Avoiding Probate With A Revocable Living 

Trusts are a popular estate planning tool for 
avoiding probate. Although there are a variety 
of different types of trust, the most commonly 
used trust for probate avoidance is a revocable 
living trust, also called a “living trust.” 

A trust is basically a legal agreement between the 
“grantor” (the person who puts assets into the 
trust) and the “trustee” (the person who agrees 
to manage those assets) to hold title to assets for 
the benefit of the “beneficiary.” With a revocable 
living trust, this agreement is typically made between 
you as the grantor and you as the trustee 
for the benefit of you as the beneficiary. You act 
as your own trustee during your lifetime, and 
then you name someone as a “successor trustee” 
to take over management of the trust when you 
die or in the event of your incapacity. 

It might seem odd to make an agreement with 
yourself to hold title to assets for yourself in 
order to benefit yourself. Yet by doing so, you 
remove those assets from the court’s jurisdiction 
in the event of your incapacity or when you 
die. Instead, those assets transfer to your successor 
trustee, without any court intervention 

At that point, your successor trustee is responsible 
for managing the trust assets and eventually 
distributing them to your beneficiaries, according 
to the terms you spell out in the trust agreement. 
This is how a trust avoids probate, saving 
your family significant time, money, loss of privacy, 
forfeiture of control, and emotional stress. 



Howard Rubin, Anita Hardy, Hattie Harris, Wendy Senou, Mary Harley, Bette 
White, Doris Behrens, Freda Bernard, Beth Copti, Terri Cummings, Marilyn 
Diaz, Virginia Elliott, Elma Flores, Betty Jo Gregg, Barbara Lampman, Betty 
Mackie, Elizabeth Rassmusen, Maria Reyes, Marian DeMars, Anne Schryver, 
Chrisine Bachwansky, Colleen McKernan, Sandy Swanson, Hank Landsberg, 

Ken Anhalt, Shannon Vandevelde

* To add your name to this distinguished list, please call the paper at 626.355.2737. 
YEAR of birth not required 
SIERRA MADRE SENIOR CLUB Every Saturday from 11:30am-3:30 pm in the 
Hart Park House Senior Center. Join us as we celebrate birthdays, holidays and pay 
BINGO. Must be 50+ to join. For more information call Mark at 626-355-3951. 

DOMINOES TRAIN GAME Wednesday, 4/6 & 4/20 11:00 am— 12:30 pm Hart 
Park House The object of the game is for a player to play all the tiles from their hand 
onto one or more trains, emanating from a central hub or “station”. Call Lawren with 
questions that you may have. 


Tuesday, 4/12 & 4/26,, 10:30 am—Hart Park House If you enjoy painting, sketching, 
water color, or making some other form of artistic creation please join our new 
program, PAINT PALS!!! Bring a project that you are working on to the HPH and 
enjoy some quality art time with other artists looking to paint with a new pal. 

TEA AND TALK SENIOR BOOK CLUB Tuesday, 4/6 & 4/20— 9:00 am Staff has 
launched a new book club series, Tea and Talk, which meets twice a month to discuss 
the fun, suspense, intrigue, love and so much more that each selection will have in 

FIBER FRIENDS Tuesday, 4/5 & 4/19 —10:00 am If you enjoy knitting, crocheting, 
embroidery, needlepoint, bunka, huck, tatting or cross stitch then we have a 
group for you! Bring your current project, a nonalcoholic beverage, then sit and chat 
with likeminded fiber friends. We meet in the Hart Park House 

BINGO Tuesday 4/12 and 4/16 1:00 pm- 2:00 pm Come on down to enjoy this 
time with friends. We are trying a new spin on BINGO fun so please bring your good 
luck charms and BINGO markers! 

Brunner is available for income tax consultation. Please call 626-355-5278 x 704 

CHAIR YOGA Every Monday and Wednesday, 10-10:45 am Please join us for some 
gentle stretching, yoga, balance exercise and overall relaxation with Paul. Classes are 
ongoing and held in the Memorial Park Covered Pavilion or the Hart Park House.. 

HULA AND POLYNESIAN DANCE Every Friday, 10-10:45 am Bring a lei, your 
flower skirt or just your desire to dance! Hula in the Park is back and waiting for you 
to join in on all the fun! Memorial Park Pavilion. 


Don Hewes and Nadine Hale are a dancing team, but she 
decides to start a career on her own. So he takes the next 
dancer he meets, Hannah Brown, as a new partner. After a 
while, this new team is so successful that Florenz Ziegfeld 
is interested in them, but due to the fact that Nadine Hale 
also dances (and stars) in the Ziegfeld Follies, Don says no. 
Despite the fact that he is in love with Hannah, he keeps the 
relation with her strictly business. So Hannah is of the opinion that he is still in love with 
Nadine, and her suspicion grows when he dances with Nadine in a Night Club Floor Show. 


A Weekly Religion Column by Rev. James Snyder 


Recently, I was reminded 

of my father’s passing 12 

years ago. It’s funny how 
time quickly goes by, and then something 
happens to remind you of the past.
When I was growing up, spankings were 
normal. And, for someone like me, those 
spankings were quite regular. Today my 
father would be arrested for all the spankings 
he gave me while I was growing up. 
At that time, something was wrong if you 
didn’t get a spanking.
When I was in the fifth grade, my 
schoolteacher happened to have been 
my father’s schoolteacher. I’m afraid she 
wouldn’t pass today because she also believed 
in spankings, as did our elementary 
school principal.
I remember when we went to class right 
after some bill passed saying we could not 
pray in school. Our fifth-grade teacher 
stood before the class with the spanking 
stick bouncing it off her hand and 
said most arrogantly, “Let them come to 
my class and tell me I’m not allowed to 
pray.” I would not have wanted to be that 
Home rule was simple; if I get a spanking 
at school, I get a spanking at home. That’s 
just how it was, and I had to learn to live 
with it. 
Quite often, our schoolteacher, before the 
day began, would stand before the class 
with the spanking stick and remind everybody 
that she was in charge and if you 
didn’t do it her way, you would get the 
spanking stick. Sometimes we were sent 
to the principal’s office to get a spanking. 
I would rather go to the principal’s 
office than have my teacher spank me if 
the truth were known. He knew when to 
quit; she didn’t.
After a spanking at school, my father was 
informed about my spanking. When I 
got home, he was standing there, ready 
for me to come in, and escorted me to 
my bedroom, where he honored me with 
another spanking. He didn’t know what 
I got spanked for, and it didn’t matter 
to him. The spanking at school meant a 
spanking at home. That was the rule.
I tried to figure out ways to keep my 
father from knowing about the school 
spanking, but that was impossible because 
my teacher knew my father.
During that time, I did not have an advocate 
in the situation of home spankings, 
that is, until one day.
Growing up, I loved hunting, and usually, 
it would be for rabbits. That was the 
vogue in those days.
Because I loved hunting rabbits, I needed 
a dog. So I got a beagle and trained him 
to hunt rabbits with me. So we made a 
good team. We spent a lot of time together, 
so there was that deep bond between a 
young boy and his dog, almost like “Old 

One day, as usual, I got into trouble. I 
can’t remember the trouble, but it’s not 
important now. What is important is that 
the trouble inspired my father to donate 
a high-class spanking to me.
I was outside near my dog pen and saw 
my father come toward me angrily waving 
his belt. I knew exactly what was in 
store for me, and there was no place to 
run. And if I did run, I would sooner or 
later have to come back home. So the best 
thing for me to do was to wait and take 
my punishment like a boy in trouble.
No way was I prepared for what was going 
to happen next.
As my father came closer, I could hear 
him yelling, and he was waving his belt 
in the air, and it would not be too long to 
get to me.
When he got to me, he continued yelling 
and began the spanking session. Even he 
wasn’t prepared for what was going to 
Suddenly, I heard my dog, Sparky, bark 
as I had never heard him bark before. He 
was chained to his pen, which would assume 
a great deal of safety from the dog. 
But not Sparky.
Before I could process it, I heard Sparky 
yell and lunge forward, and then I heard 
the chain break, and he was on his way to 
my father. I’m sure he wasn’t going to my 
father to give him a good friendly hug.
He lunged for my father, and my father 
turned and ran as fast as he could, but 
Sparky caught him several times and bit 
My dilemma at the time was, do I laugh 
or cry? Nobody ever stood up for me 
through all my spanking sessions.
My father finally got into the garage and 
shut the door. Sparky turned around 
and came racing toward me. He wiggled 
and waggled when he got there and 
wanted me to pet him, which I did most 
My father’s favorite Bible verse, and he 
quoted it repeatedly in my presence, was, 
“He that spareth his rod hateth his son: 
but he that loveth him chasteneth him 
betimes” (Proverbs 13:24).
I must say that he was very faithful to this 
verse of Scripture.
As a father, I was more into this verse, 
“Train up a child in the way he should 
go: and when he is old, he will not depart 
from it” (Proverbs 22:6).
I have tried to combine these two verses 
throughout my life. Each situation demands 
a lot of thought, and I’ve tried to 
give my thoughts a lot of room. 

Dr. James L. Snyder lives in Ocala, FL 
with the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage. 
Telephone 1-352-216-3025, e-mail Website is 

Mountain Views News 80 W Sierra Madre Blvd. No. 327 Sierra Madre, Ca. 91024 Office: 626.355.2737 Fax: 626.609.3285 
Email: Website: