Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Going Vegetarian - Inside Glenview Magazine

People in the Chicago North Suburbs can now read my article

"Going Vegetarian"

in the January 2014 print issue of

Inside Glenview Magazine

I welcome your comments.

Monday, December 16, 2013

How to Choose the Right Gym - The Dollar Stretcher

I welcome your comments on my latest article in

The Dollar Stretcher

"How to Choose the Right Gym"

Friday, December 6, 2013

Many Museums in Champaign County - Prime Life Times, December 2013

Local readers can now enjoy my latest article in

the December 2013 issue of

Prime Life Times

"Many Museums of Champaign County"

I welcome your comments.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Genealogy Glenview Style - Inside Glenview Magazine

Folks in the Chicago suburbs can read my latest published article in the print copy of

Inside Glenview Magazine,

 December 2013,

Getting Started in Genealogy Glenview Style.  

I welcome your comments.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Cast Iron Cookware - The Dollar Stretcher

Readers of the print copy of

The Dollar Stretcher

can read my article in the November 2013 issue

How Cast Iron Cookware Saves Money

I welcome your comments.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Ceiling Fans

Buying a Ceiling Fan

By Debra L. Karplus

Buying a ceiling fan may be the perfect solution to numerous household cooling, heating, and circulation problems.  Perhaps your upstairs doesn’t get as cool as you’d like during warm weather and you’d like to save money on air conditioning.  Or possibly the house feels stuffy, winter or summer, and you’d like more air circulating.  There are many excellent reasons to purchase a ceiling fan.

Free standing fans such as window fans, box fans, table fans, floor fans, or oscillating fans are often adequate and are relatively inexpensive and require no installation, but they often get in the way and usually require extension cords that can easily be tripped over; safety is a serious consideration with these portable fans, especially if you have children at home.  The installation of the right ceiling fan can be simple and cheap and the best solution for your home.

Ceiling fans have several features to select.

The purchase of a ceiling fan is easy; the kits are lightweight and can easily be carried in your small car trunk and transported home.  Look online first, then drive to the home improvement center and head to the aisle with the ceiling fans.  Typically ceiling fans are displayed overhead so that you can see how they work. 

Before leaving home though, look at the area carefully where the fan will be installed, to determine desired color and size and style.  If the fan will be used on a patio or porch, be sure the fan is designed for outdoor use.  Many people install ceiling fans in bedrooms; some do not like sleeping directly beneath a fan, so keep that in mind before making your purchase.  Most fans come in brown, but there are also many white fans and other colors and fancier styles as well.  Depending on the d├ęcor and vintage of your home, you’ll select your color. 

Room size determines fan size.  Most fans have five blades, but some have six, four or even three.  Larger rooms are best cooled by a fifty-two inch fan.  Smaller rooms benefit well using a forty-two inch fan.  A thirty-six ceiling fan is fine for a small upstairs hallway.  Hopefully, the person working at the home improvement store in the fan department can provide some guidance. 

Many people choose a ceiling fan that has a light attached to it.  The inexpensive fans are adequate, but if you pay less than about forty dollars for a fan-light combination, you’re likely to regret your purchase of a fan that is noisy and wobbly.  You’ll need to decide if you want just one light or many smaller ones.  (Some of the fan kits come with light bulbs, others do not.)  There are many styles to choose.  The ultra-fancy ceiling fans can cost as much as about seven hundred dollars, but truly, for under about one hundred dollars you are likely to find the ceiling fan that’s just right for your home.

Most ceiling fans have three speeds.  Don’t purchase anything with less than that.  Additionally, choose a ceiling fan that is reversible.  That feature will make the fan more effective in both warm and cool weather in terms of how it circulates the air in your room.

Do-it-yourselfers can easily install a ceiling fan.

If you already have a light in the spot where you want your ceiling fan installed, expect a simple process to install your new fan.  The fans come with very straightforward illustrated installation instructions.  First, the motor part of the fan is attached to the ceiling.  Then, each blade is attached.  Finally, the light is connected.  Make sure the chains for the fan and for the light pull easily and that the ceiling fan is well balanced when turning.  Note that you may need to purchase one or two pull chains (three dollars each) depending on the height of your ceiling, the length of the chains attached to the fan, and how tall you are.

Older homes might have old wiring there that will need to be replaced.  Also, sometimes with an older home some additional wooden support will be needed for the new ceiling fan.  Expect installation to take about one to two hours depending on your level of competence and the extent of the job.

Installing a new ceiling fan in a spot that currently is has no light or fan, is a bit more complicated.  If you don’t know what you’re doing, this is when most people hire a handyman to do the job.  Expect to pay under three hundred dollars, depending on the going rate in your specific locale.

Ceiling fans in a home are a smart and economical way to facilitate air circulation. The fans require virtually no maintenance other than cleaning the tops of the blades on occasion.  Expect years of comfort from your new ceiling fan.



Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Community College - The Dollar Stretcher

Check out my latest article in

The Dollar Stretcher


Community College

I welcome your comments.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Getting Started in Genealogy - Prime Life Times

Check out my latest article

in the print copy of

Prime Life Times

"Getting Started in Genealogy"

October 2013 edition

It's a newspaper for seniors in Champaign County, Illinois

I welcome your comments

Friday, October 11, 2013

Chainsaw purchase - The Dollar Stretcher

I welcome your comments about my recent article in

The Dollar Stretcher


Thursday, October 10, 2013

Raising Chickens - The Dollar Stretcher

I welcome your comments about my latest article in

The Dollar Stretcher


Raising Backyard Hens

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Lighthouse Lodging - Dollar Stretcher article

I welcome your comments on my recent article in

The Dollar Stretcher

Lighthouse Lodging

Sunday, October 6, 2013

For more about my recent writing projects

check out

Saturday, October 5, 2013

How to Buy a Chainsaw - The Dollar Stretcher

The Dollar Stretcher

October 2013 issue

has published my article

"How to Buy a Chainsaw"

I welcome your comments.

Cost Effective Fences - The Dollar Stretcher

Subscribers of the print copy of

The Dollar Stretcher

can read in the October 2013 issue

my article

Cost Effective Fences

I welcome your comments

Monday, September 30, 2013

Baby Toys You Can Make - Dollar Stretcher Magazine

Readers of the September 2013 print copy of

The Dollar Stretcher

can read my latest published article

Baby Toys You Can Make

I welcome you comments

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Traverse City Michigan - Champaign-Urbana News-Gazette

Check out my latest published article in

the Champaign-Urbana News-Gazette

about Traverse City Michigan

Berries, cherries and more

I welcome your comments.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Fences - The Dollar Stretcher

I welcome your comments

about my recent article in

The Dollar Stretcher

about Fences

Monday, August 19, 2013

Generous but Frugal - The Dollar Stretcher

I welcome your comments about my article in

The Dollar Stretcher


Generosity and Frugality

Friday, August 16, 2013

Sorghum sweetener - The Dollar Stretcher

I welcome your comments on my recent article in

The Dollar Stretcher


Sweetening with Sorghum

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Using Iron Cookware - The Dollar Stretcher

I welcome your comments on my newest article in

The Dollar Stretcher


Iron Cookware

I welcome your comments.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Baby Toys to Make - The Dollar Stretcher

I hope you enjoy my recent article in

The Dollar Stretcher 


Baby Toys you can Make

I welcome your comments

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Lawn Alternatives - The Dollar Stretcher article

I welcome your comments about

my recent article in

The Dollar Stretcher


Lawn Alternatives

Bicycle Purchase - The Dollar Stretcher

I welcome your comments on my recent article in

The Dollar Stretcher


Bicycle Shopping

Home Project Management - The Dollar Stretcher

Check out my latest article in

The Dollar Stretcher


Managing Home Projects

I welcome your comments

Buying a Kitchen Stove - article in The Dollar Stretcher

I welcome your comments about my article in

The Dollar Stretcher


Buying a Kitchen Stove

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Emergency Room Visits: Dollar Stretcher article

The Dollar Stretcher

I welcome your comments on my article about

Emergency Room Visits

Monday, July 8, 2013

Fun for Kidz Magazine - Friends with Disabilities

Check out the hard copy, July 2013 issue, of the children's magazine

Fun for Kidz Magazine

My article, "The Visually Impaired Student at School" has been published in this issue.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Lawn mower purchase - article in The Dollar Stretcher

I welcome your comments about my most recent article in

The Dollar Stretcher

about purchasing a lawn mower

I welcome your comments

Friday, July 5, 2013

Spices and Health-- Dollar Stretcher article

I welcome your comments about my article in

The Dollar Stretcher

about Spices for your Health

Monday, June 24, 2013

visit Hamilton County Indiana

Hamilton County Indiana is a place to visit


to learn more about it

I welcome your comments on my article

Sunday, June 16, 2013

A Yearly Financial Check-up

Your Yearly Financial Check-up

Making a change can add change to your wallet

By Debra L. Karplus

You’re diligent about scheduling yearly doctor and dentist visits for your family, complete with blood and urine tests, flu shots, recommended cancer screenings for people your age including the beloved colonoscopy that people love to joke about; dental cleanings and x-rays, eye exams, and consulting with a specialist when needed. Good for you!  Preventative health care helps keep you healthier and, ultimately, wealthier.  You’re definitely on the path for the many good things ahead. Give yourself a gentle pat on the back.

But, have you scrutinized your finances?  Money-related matters require that same kind of attention as your physical health to assure that you are on track financially.  People’s life situations change.  Your income fluctuates, for example.  Children get older, enter college and eventually move out of the house, or maybe grandma moves in.  You relocate to a bigger house or maybe scale down to a smaller one.  It’s important to examine financial aspects of your life at least yearly.

Review your monthly statements to assure that your accounts in sync with your current lifestyle.

The next time you receive your monthly bank statement, peruse it carefully for fees such as service charges.  Perhaps there’s a bank across town that more closely suits your needs in terms of minimum balance and easy online bill paying.  Or maybe you no longer need the local bank and might instead establish an account with one of the online banks.

Examine your monthly credit card statement.  Life can be simpler if you have as few credit cards as possible; one credit card may really be enough.  Make sure that your credit card has the most appropriate program for your lifestyle, such as cash back rewards.

Review your financial portfolio yearly, including workplace retirement such as 401K or 403B, IRA and ROTH, and non-retirement investments.  Do you have the correct beneficiaries listed?  Dividend reinvestment plans can be tax-smart. Conversion to a ROTH might be a good idea.  Do some tax planning in the fall before the holiday season consumes you, or at the start of the next year, or around your birthday.

Speaking of taxes, check your W4 at work.  Have you listed the correct number for exemptions?  If your yearly IRS refund is substantial, you might consider raising the number on your W4. You can make changes to your W4 anytime of year.  This definitely shouldn’t wait until tax time, the best time is now.




Provide the appropriate protection for you and your family, and your home and valuables.

Schedule a yearly meeting with your insurance agent.  Ask if your deductibles are appropriate; consider raising deductibles to lower premiums.  Be sure you have the right amount of coverage, especially for your home.

 Possibly you have policies you no longer need such as life insurance, if you’re a person without dependents or debts.  Or maybe as you’re aging, you might consider purchasing long term care insurance; if you’re young and healthy, the premiums can be quite affordable.

Don’t forget your will.  Pull it out of your safety deposit box and review it carefully. Is everything stated in your will current?  Is the person assigned as executor still the best choice?

Pay only for utilities and auto expenses that reflect your lifestyle.

Read each line item on your utility bills, gas, electric, water, sewer, home and cell phone, and cable TV.  You may be paying for services you no longer need, such as long distance on your home phone when you make always make long distance calls on your cell.  Are your cable and Internet services and cell phone plans still right for your family?

Operating a car can become a real money pit.  Is the shop where you get your oil changed, tires rotated and other routine maintenance still the best for you? Perhaps you pay for roadside assistance through one of the motor clubs.  Do you still require a roadside assistance program or are you paying for services you no longer need? You might consider dropping the program, and adding towing to your auto insurance; the cost is generally nominal.

Cancel the gifts that don’t keep giving.

Magazine and newspaper subscriptions are great.  But, do you really read all these, or could you cancel and read some of them online.  Glossy magazines end up in the landfill, often unread. 

Kudos to you if you’ve joined a gym to become more physically fit. But how often do you get to that gym?  Maybe you’re not getting your money’s worth out of your membership.  Many fitness centers sell cards that charge you per fitness class? Calculate which is a better way to stay fit.

Don’t procrastinate.  Every day you put off tending to your finances could be money lost. Little things add up to big things.  Making time right now to examine your finances could put money into your pocket today and in the future.  Most of these are small things, but the composite of them can be huge over time.  Get busy now!

Free Portfolio Reviews

Is a Free Portfolio Review Really Free?

How to work with a financial planner

By Debra L. Karplus

     You’re a conscientious person.  You take excellent care of your home, car and personal belongings.  You visit the doctor and dentist regularly for exams, even when you’re healthy, to make sure everything’s okay.  A friend mentioned that you should also have your nest egg checked periodically, by having a financial checkup.  You’ve spotted the marquee at your bank or the notice in the local newspaper advertising a free portfolio review.  You’re happy with your bank and trust the people who work there.  But, you pride yourself in being a good consumer and know that nothing’s ever really free.  There’s always a hidden agenda; you always need to read the fine print.  So what’s the real deal on these free portfolio reviews?

Free portfolio places are done by various financial institutions.

     Many bank, credit unions, other financial institutions, independent companies, and possibly your online brokerage firm, often perform free portfolio and retirement reviews for current and potential customers.  Their logic is that enough of these people will ultimately become their customers, so their time’s well spent; it’s really free because they hope to get your business. Typically they do get enough business to “give away’ the portfolio review service. Before you make an appointment, make sure it’s really free.

Professionals with different background, training and credentials can do portfolio reviews?

     A Certified Financial Planner (CFP) is likely to be the expert doing your review.  They are professionals with special college training who’ve passed a certification exam.  But, you might encounter someone with different training, schooling and certificate, such as a Personal Financial Specialist (PFS), a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) who’s received specialized training in financial planning.  Or you may be working with a Certified Retirement Planning Consultant (CRPC ) who specializes in retirement planning.

Being well-prepared gives you the most value from you free portfolio review?

     One you’ve scheduled your appointment, you’ll need to gather current relevant financial documents from home.  This helps maximize the benefit of the review. Bring bank and other statements from non-retirement investments.  Provide retirement documents including your IRA, ROTH, SEP, 401K or 403B and other pensions such as state retirement or teacher retirement system.  Don’t forget that yearly statement you receive from the Social Security Administration which states what benefits you’ll get at different retirement ages.  A capable financial planner should also as about your current income, living expenses, and debts including mortgage, car payments credit card and other financial obligations.  They need to know your current age and desired age at retirement and how you expect to live in retirement such as relocating or travelling.


Some professionals are better than others.  Find one who seems to be in sync with you.

     Beyond credentials, the person you meet with should seem professional, competent, and not pushy.  One couple recently complained about the CRPC they met with.  “She talked more about herself and her own family and her retirement plans; she didn’t really seem to care about us.”  Another woman expressed concern about confidentiality and privacy, after a planner led her into an open area with other planners and their customers.  One customer, referred by a friend to an individual for his portfolio review, was shocked when the “professional” talked about his friend’s investments.  If you get a bad gut feeling, are treated condescendingly or without respect, then end the meeting quickly and exit quietly.

     Whatever credentials, the person doing your portfolio review must be thorough.  A semi-retired teacher, with net worth nearing a million dollars, arrived to meet her portfolio reviewer, without first changing out of her gardening clothes.  The planner didn’t take time to even ask pertinent questions about her retirement savings, apparently making some wrong assumptions, based on the woman’s appearance.   The lesson in life, for everyone, is that sometimes you don’t really know who you’re talking to!

  After your portfolio review is completed, you have some options.

     Following your portfolio review, you should receive a packet in the mail with computerized charts of how your assets specific are allocated, and possibly some suggestions to rebalance.  Some of these are more comprehensive, but, don’t fret.  Remember, it’s free.

     You may want to follow some of their suggestions on your own. Or, if you don’t feel confident making you r own investing decisions, you may want to hire this financial expert, or engage some other qualified professional.  Some of the experts in the financial world are fee-based, and others charge a commission on what they sell.  Watch out for the commission-based planners.  They make more money selling certain investments, regardless of what’s best for you.

     A free portfolio review is a great idea to assess how you get from where you are, to where you want to be financially.  Ask trusted friends for recommendations of specific names or financial institutions.  Then go with your intuition to determine the next step.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Hamilton County Indiana - a place for children

Check out my latest article in

Grand Magazine

about Hamilton County Indiana

what a wonderful place

I welcome your comments.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Airport shuttles: what to do?

Getting to and from the Airport

By Debra L. Karplus

You have your trip planned.  You were able to find good deals on airfare.  Lucky you.  Maybe that fare is from your hometown airport, or possibly in a neighboring town. Now it’s time to figure out how you will get to and from the airport in both directions without spending a fortune.  Sometimes an airport shuttle can actually be booked at the same time that you pay for your air ticket.  It may be a good deal, but not always, so be sure to explore options.

Obviously, the cheapest way to get from your home to the airport on the outbound trip and then from the destination airport to the place where you’ll be staying, and then back again on your return rides from your destination lodging to the airport, and then from your local airport to home is to have some helpful Uncle Larry or your generous friend who offers to give you a ride.  But you can’t always count on that happening, especially on flights that are either very early or very late in the day, or during rush hour.

The cost of your rides will be dependent on a few variables. 

First, how many of you need the ride to or from the airport; is it only you, you and a spouse, or several family members.  Related to number travelling may be number of bags that your group will be bringing.  Some airport transportation companies will differentiate between carry-ons and checked bags, others may not.  You’ll also want to calculate the approximate distance from the airport to your departure or arrival spot, also.

Your outbound airport transportation will be easier to play because you are on familiar turf.

Possibly the simplest way to get to the airport on your trip away from home is to drive your own car and park it at the airport.  Be sure to price the cost of airport parking.  Many of the larger airports have economy parking lots farther from the airport than the pricier parking lots, but offer a free shuttle bus to travelers who are using that lot.  Often, you can order and pay for this airport parking in advance via the Internet.  Additionally, you may find in a coupon offering a discount either online or in a local magazine or newspaper.

But if your travel is during the winter, and you live in any area where there may be snow or ice, you might consider an alternate airport ride than driving your car and parking at the airport so that you don’t return tired from your travel and need to dig your car out from inches of snow.  And don’t count on five, ten or thirty day weather forecasts.  The chance of accuracy is relatively slim.  When planning your trip, call or look online for prices of taxis, limousines, shuttle busses or even local busses.  Many communities have exemplary bus service that goes out to the airport several times daily.  Check it out!

Transportation to and from your destination airport might be trickier.

The first thing you need to determine is if you’ll need a car while on your trip.  Depending on the number traveling in your group, the activities you have planning for the trip, and the options for getting around in your destination city, renting a car could possibly be the best option.  You’ll need to play around with the calculations to decide if a rental car is the way to go.  Most airports have a selection of well-known rental places that rent low budget compact cars as well as larger minivans.

If you decide you and your family can get around using public transportation while on your vacation, you can save quite a bit of money by avoiding a rental car.  Walking or using city buses while away is typically the most cost effective way to get to places while travelling.  And you’ll get the bonus of some needed exercise to work off the extra calories from trying new and interesting dining spots while on your trip.

But, you still need a ride to and from your destination airport.  Many of the airport shuttle companies offer affordable rides.  If you are willing to share your shuttle with a half dozen or so other airport travelers, and have a ride that makes a few stops, you can save money.  One woman recently visited grandchildren in Los Angeles, flying on American Airlines.  En route she perused the in-flight magazine, American Way, and found a coupon for the Super Shuttle for ten percent off.  She had used this shuttle before, and always with excellent service including punctuality and courtesy.  She was able to easily book it online at, before her return flight, paying only $16.20 from Culver City to LAX.  While ordering this shuttle, she noticed that Super Shuttle services a large number of cities around the United States.

Travelling is not without its stresses.  But you can take away some of the potential headaches of your trip by planning ahead how you will get to and from the airport in both your departure and arrival city.  There are often many choices, so take you time to see what’s available.



Pet Insurance: do you need it?

When Fluffy Gets Sick

Why Pet Insurance might be Right for You

By Debra L. Karplus

You love your children dearly, but it seems that you spend way too much time taking them to the pediatrician.  Whether it’s a routine school physical and required immunizations or another case of pink eye, it’s physically exhausting to deal with at times. If there’s a positive side to all this it’s that your family health insurance is likely to cover these expenses and those medical bills that you pay out-of-pocket can at least be included in the itemized deductions on your federal income tax each year.

But what to do when your dog or cat or other household pet gets sick?  Then what?  Any responsible pet owner knows that just like with children, your pet needs at the very minimum, a yearly check-up, shots and procedures to maintain optimal health, and quite often medical attention for relatively minor maladies such as worms or fleas or more serious diseases or injuries.  Yes, dogs get infections, tumors, and diseases such as leukemia; cats survive accidents from a hit-and-run driver.  There is indeed a price to pay for the love and companionship you give and receive from the family pet.

Despite your affection for Rover or Buster, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will not allow you to claim your pet as a dependent even though he or she is clearly dependent on you, especially if they are not in good health.  You can not claim any of your pet-related expenses anywhere on a tax form.  And your family health insurance, however generous and inclusive, does not cover your pet as it does with other beloved family members.

Health insurance plans do exist exclusively for your household pets.

If you add up some of the expenses that are part of having a pet in the family, especially an animal that has health issues, you might find that pet insurance could save you money.  Like medical insurance for individuals and families, it is often difficult to get a straight answer regarding the cost of premiums.  A good place to start your pet insurance “shopping” is talk to friends and neighbors who have pets and inquire with local veterinarians and pet stores to get advice and information.

 When you do a web search and you will discover sites where you can type in the demographics about your pet.  This includes what type of animal they are, their age, and the extent to which you want coverage, such as treatment for illnesses versus routine check-ups, and more specific data about your dear pet.  These sites will forward your information to various companies that insure pets to give you competitive quotes on premiums.  It is not unlike the process of shopping for medical insurance for your family.  But, do this with caution; be prepared to receive a flood of emails and phone calls soliciting your business long after you have chosen a pet insurance company.

You can locate pet insurance on your own by using the Internet.

Do a web search and start contacting some of the web sites that sell pet insurance.  Many have toll-free phone numbers if you’d like to speak with a real person, especially if there is something noteworthy or unusual about your pet that might require discussion.  A couple of insurance carriers that appear to be worth contacting are Purina Care, the same folks that make and sell pet food, ( and VPI Pet Insurance (

Bringing a pet into the family is a decision not to be taken lightly.  It is a very big responsibility and best to be viewed as a lifelong (life of the pet, that is) commitment.  Even very healthy dogs, cats, and other pets have often expensive medical costs related to keeping them healthy.  Learn about pet insurance, premiums, and coverage to determine if pet insurance is right for your family pet.



Friday, May 31, 2013

Travel Insurance - The Dollar Stretcher

Travel Insurance

Dollar Stretcher

artilce by Debbie

I welcome your comments

Friday, May 24, 2013

Genealogy Research Night, Wednesday Jun 12 at the Urbana Free Library archives

Genealogy Research Night and special presentation,

 Wednesday June 12, 6:00 – 9:00 pm,

Urbana Free Library archives department on the second floor

Interested in untangling your family roots? Whether your kin settled in Champaign County, somewhere else in Illinois, across America, or on the other side of the ocean, extensive resources are tucked away on the second floor of the Urbana Free Library in the archives department.  Specially trained librarians, computer genealogical databases, and a large collection of print materials are available during archives hours, and are free for the public for researching their ancestry.

But if you have reached a “brick wall” in your research, or simply don’t know how to get started in genealogy, don’t despair.  On the second Wednesday evening of each month, the Champaign County Genealogical Society volunteers are on hand to assist you in constructing your family tree.  They can point you to useful resources to help further your genealogy discoveries.

Additionally, a special presentation is part of each Genealogy Research Night.  At the June 12 Research Night, Eric Fair will share information about scanning photos, a valuable tool for reconstructing your heritage.  His part of the evening begins at 7 pm.  No need to sign up or call in advance.  Just show up, ready to dig into your family roots.


Monday, May 13, 2013

Baroque Artists of CU - concert Sunday May 19 on campus

Learn more about the upcoming concert

Monday, May 6, 2013

Parkland College Chorus concert Saturday May 11, 7 pm at Parkland

Check out the concert at Parkland Saturday night.

 It should be excellent!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Nursing your Baby - The Dollar Stretcher

Check out my latest article on www/

I welcome your comments.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Prairie Ensemble concert, Saturday May 4, 2013

Prairie Ensemble concert, Saturday May 4, 2013, 7:30 pm,
 McKinley Presbyterian Church, Champaign
By Debra L. Karplus

Looking for an engaging, interesting, relaxing and fun way to spend a Saturday evening?  Check out the final concert of the2012 – 2013 season of the Prairie Ensemble.  In its second decade, Prairie Ensemble’s website ( states “expanding the borders of classical music” as one of the group’s missions.  You definitely will not be disappointed!

The May 4 concert promises to please its listeners.  Music director Kevin Kelly will be conducting one of his favorite pieces, W. A. Mozart’s Symphony No. 25.  Additionally, the group will play The Horn Concerto No. 1 by Richard Strauss, and Ralph Vaughn Williams Symphony No. 5.  Bernhard Scully, a University of Illinois horn professor will be the featured soloist for the event.

Audience members can arrive at 7:00 pm on concert night to participate in Kevin’s informal commentary about the evening’s program at no extra charge, before enjoying the 7:30 concert which lasts until approximately 9:00 pm.  Additionally, don’t be surprised at the casual and usually captivating “half-time show”, as Kelly likes to call his intermission.

Tickets can be purchased online for $18 or at the door.  Prairie Ensemble typically performs at local churches in the Champaign-Urbana area.  The concert on May 4 will be at the McKinley Presbyterian Church, known around town for its marvelous acoustics.  You’ll appreciate the two ramped parking garages across the street of this campus church on 5th and Daniel Streets, an easy walk from numerous delicious eateries, and a quick drive from a wide variety of restaurants around Champaign and Urbana.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Grand Magazine article by Debbie : Nursing grandchild

I welcome your comments about my  latest published article about nursing in Grand Magazine.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Baroque Artists of Champaign Urbana -- concert on Sunday April 21, 2013, McKinley Church

details on the Champaign County visitor website (blog)


check it out

Friday, March 29, 2013

Mothers and Daughters, Grand Magazine

Check out my latest article in Grand Magazine

about Mothers & Daughters.

I welcome your comments.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Discount Airlines

Subscribers of the print copy of

The Dollar Stretcher Magazine

can read my recent article, written under the name Lee Doppelt

about discount airlines

in the March 2013.

Check it out!

Discount Eyewear

The Clear Picture on Eyewear

The Eyes Have It!

By Debra L. Karplus

Your eyeglasses are so scratched that you can barely see through them anymore and the frames have some chips in them and just don’t fit right.  You’ve been procrastinating, but it’s probably about time to buy a new pair of glasses.  You call the place where you bought your current glasses and they remind you that they cannot simply replace them with another pair, as it’s been more than a year, way more than a year, since your last eye exam.   What to do.

Who is covering your eyes?

If you have medical problems with your eyes, you may choose an ophthalmologist, who is a medical doctor specializing in eyes, rather than a licensed optician, the professional who you will find in freestanding eyewear shops and also those vision centers inside some of the large discount stores.  An optician at these places will typically test you for glaucoma and cataracts in addition to the routine near vision, far vision, peripheral vision, and astigmatism, with all those teeny tiny alphabet letters on the wall chart.

Before you make an appointment, carefully scrutinize your health insurance plan and see if a vision exam and/or eyeglasses or contact lenses are covered by your policy.  Perhaps you have a membership in a large organization such as AARP ( or American Automobile Association (; expect a thirty percent discount from selected retailers.  Seniors can expect substantial savings at many of the optical centers, especially the large more well-known shops.

Try to see the prices clearly.

You may feel as if you need to have a PhD in advanced mathematics to sort out the mumbo jumbo of buying eyewear.  Sometimes it may be cheaper to have the exam done by an optician and purchase the glasses or contact lenses elsewhere.  One gentleman was a bit bewildered at the local vision center when he learned that an exam and one pair of glasses would cost him two hundred dollars, but the same exam and two pairs would cost $170 at the same place.  (No it’s not your poor vision; truly that discount makes absolutely no sense!)  Of course he bought two pairs even though he only wanted one.

You will also be offered umpteen options when purchasing glasses such as tinted, scratch resistant, and extended warranties.  Don’t let yourself get talked into any features you don’t really desire unless they are desirable features that are cost effective.  Remember that you’re paying for the frame and lens combination.  And you can be certain that single vision lenses will always be cheaper.

Visualize other ways to save on eyewear.

One woman who had worn glasses for nearly forty years walked into the optical shop at the mall.  By mistake, she started looking at children’s frames.  She was amazed that these frames were much less expensive than comparable ones for adults, and appeared to be more durable, also.  Curious, this petite lady tried on some of the kid’s frames (no, not the one’s with Mickey Mouse or Barbie) and discovered that they were an excellent fit for her small face in both function and appearance, so that’s what she chose.  Those frames, by the way, lasted much longer than any glasses that she had purchased in the past.

See what’s available online in eyewear.

You probably already buy air tickets, books, gifts, and many other items online. It’s easy and often cheaper than going to a local store in your town.  But if it’s been awhile since you’ve bought glasses or contact lenses, you may be surprised and pleased to learn that once you’ve had the eye exam, you can order frames and lenses on the Internet from a variety of reputable web sites that have rave reviews from numerous satisfied customers.  One site sells frames for as low as $6.95 and comes with a generous warranty.

The financial side of eye care can be overwhelming.  There are so many choices to sort through.  And don’t forget about the tax implications.  Since you don’t often buy eyewear or even have the exam, although it is recommended to be performed annually, you may have forgotten than your out-of-pocket expenses for the exam and glasses or contacts are a tax deductible medical expense on the Schedule A of your federal income tax.

Eyewear has become big business, and it, like other industries, has become extremely competitive.  Designer eyewear has created its own market niche. When it’s time to replace your current eyewear, look online to see what optical places are near you and start making some calls.


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Your Healthy Back

Arthritis, Bursitis, and other Chronic Conditions

The ABCs of a Healthy Back and Hip for Grandma

By Debra L. Karplus, MS

The joy of holding that new grandchild, walking around with him in your arms as he falls asleep, or the pleasure of having his toddler sister bouncing on your lap while you sing familiar songs.  But, ouch, your back or hip is constantly aching. You’ve looked online and finally visited your physician who confirmed that you had arthritis or, its ugly cousin, bursitis.  Discouraged, you wonder if this is how life will be for the duration.

Every back pain sufferer should explore the effects of ergonomics.

Start to improve your back and hip health by evaluating and maximizing your position when standing, sitting, and lying.  When lifting anything, always be sure to bend at the knees.  You walk or maybe you do some sort of regular exercise such as tennis or jogging.  Be sure you have appropriate well-fitting shoes with adequate arch support.  The money you save by purchasing cheap shoes will be spent on medical care for your back; this is an area where spending the extra money is an excellent investment in good health.  Visit a shop where an experienced professional will measure your feet and watch you walk to help you select the style and size of shoes specifically for you.

Approximately one-third of your life is spent on your mattress.   If it’s older than seven years, it may be time to replace it.  Remove the sheets and mattress pad and carefully look at it from the side view.  Is it saggy?  For six hundred to one thousand dollars, you can purchase a new mattress and foundation, including delivery and set up and removal of the old, with a ten year warranty.  It may be time to go mattress shopping.

Next time you are sitting on a chair or sofa, stop for a moment and check your posture.  If you’re a shorter-that-average person, it’s likely that your back never fits against the back of your seat.  Try putting a pillow behind you to reduce the strain on your lower back.

Alternative remedies can alleviate symptoms of arthritis and bursitis.

Many sufferers of arthritis and bursitis insist that stretching exercises and specifically those in various forms of yoga have nearly cured them of many of their daily aches and pains.  Locate a yoga class in your area and try it out.  Often there are free classes for first-timers before you commit to a yearly membership or buy a class punch card.

The “itis” in arthritis, bursitis and numerous other ailments and diseases means “inflammation of”.  If you look online or in books of alternative remedies, you’ll find many claims of spices you know, specifically ginger and also turmeric (an ingredient in curry) to be helpful in reducing inflammation.  Next time you’re at the grocery, head to the spice section and buy a container of turmeric or ginger, or better yet, some fresh ginger root, and experiment with their uses in your kitchen.  You may feel some subtle improvements in your health, particularly on cool, damp weather days.

Also simple to try at home is moist heat.  A warm bath can do wonders for your achy joints; or for about ten dollars at your pharmacy, you can get a pack that goes in your microwave for about a minute and works as a type of heating pad.  Amazingly, it’ll maintain its heat for about an hour.

A plethora of professionals can relieve your pain.

Acupuncture, chiropractic, and physical therapy are available nearly everywhere.  They use modalities to relieve your pain. If all else fails, get a referral from your physician.

Life with your grandchildren will be much more enjoyable when you are pain-free.  Get a medical diagnosis first. Then try some simple remedies on your own to give your grandchildren your best you.







Wednesday, February 27, 2013

A Poem for my New Grandson - Grand Magazine

I cried as I wrote it.


Monday, February 25, 2013

Grand Debbie's Secret Diary

I hope you will enjoy my latest article

about my diary

in Grand Magazine

I welcome your comments.

Safety at Grandma's - Grand Magazine article

Check out my latest article in

Grand Magazine


Safety at Grandma's

I welcome your comments.

Vacuum Cleaners - Dollar Stretcher article by Debbie

I hope you will read my

Dollar Stretcher article

about Vacuum Cleaners

I welcome your comments.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Substitute teaching (embarrassed grandparent)

Check out my article about substitute teaching (Embarrassed Grandparent)

in Grand Magazine

I welcome your comments.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Auto advertising, my latest Dollar Stretcher article

This was a fun

Dollar Stretcher

article to research, sparked by my curiosity about these vehicles on the road.

learn more about Auto Advertising


Monday, February 11, 2013

Discount Airlines -- Dollar Stretcher article

Check out my recent article in

The Dollar Stretcher


Discount Airlines

I welcome your comments.

Sweet Dreams - Dollar Stretcher Magazine, February 2013 issue

Subscribers to the hard copy of

The Dollar Stretcher

can read my recent article about mattresses in the

February 2013 issue

I welcome your comments.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Meals while Travelling - Dollar Stretcher article

I welcome your comments about my latest article in

The Dollar Stretcher

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Be a GRAND volunteer - Grand Magazine article

I welcome your comments about my latest article about



Grand Magazine

Are your Grandchildren Good Letter Writers? - Grand Magazine

I welcome your comments about my newest Grand Magazine article about

Letter Writing

Monday, January 14, 2013

Buying a new Mattress - Dollar Stretcher article

Check out my latest article in

The Dollar Stretcher

about buying a mattress

I welcome your comments.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Champaign-Urbana News-Gazette Business Briefs

Check out today's News-Gazette in the business section,

Section D, page 2

There's a nice write-up about my magazine writing.

Friday, January 4, 2013

School Pictures - my Grand Magazine article

I hope you enjoy my latest (nostalgia) article in Grand Magazine

a Picture IS worth a Thousand Words

I welcome your comments.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Bullying - Grand Magazine

Check out my latest article in Grand Magazine

I welcome your comments.

Children's Museums in the Midwest, Grand Magazine

Check out my latest article in Grand Magazine

about nearby children's museums

I welcome your comments.

Writing about Writing

  •, 2014, 08/01, Magazine Writing Business
  •, 2014, 12/01, Writing Opportunities
  •, 2015, 01/16, Teaching Writing Classes
  •, 2015, 03/01, Query letters
  •, 2015, 04/01, Marketing Agent
  •, 2015, 05/06, New Markets
  •, 2015, 07/20, Growing an Idea Bank
  •, 2015, 07/20, Online Presence
  •, 2016, 07/18, SEO-Friendly Writing

History, genealogy and research articles

  • Ancestry Magazine, September 2008, Still No Bill
  • Champaign County Historical Museum Newsletter, Summer 2007, House with a Life of its Own
  • Family Chronicle Magazine, Mar/Apr 2014, Canadian Jewish Genealogy
  • Grand Magazine, Nov 9, 2012, Genealogy with your Grandchildren
  • Inside Glenview Magazine, December 2013, Genealogy Glenview Style
  • Prime Life Times, November 2013, Getting Started in Genealogy
  • Untangling your Jewish Roots, on

Writing for children or about children

  • Essay writing for a major national testing organization
  • Fun for Kidz Magazine, Friends with Disabilities, the visually impaired student at school, July 2013
  • Grand Magazine: Debbie's Secret Diary, Feb 25, 2013
  • Grand Magazine: Fun in Hamilton County Indiana, Jun 11, 2013
  • Grand Magazine: Fun in Hamilton County Indiana, Jun 11, 2013
  • Grand Magazine: Letter Writing, Jan 23, 2013
  • Grand Magazine: Mothers & Daughters, Mar 29, 2013
  • Grand Magazine: Nursing Grandchild, Apr 29, 2013
  • Grand Magazine: Poem for my Grandson, Feb 27, 2013
  • Grand Magazine: Safety at Grandma's, Feb 25, 2013
  • Grand Magazine: Volunteering, Jan 23, 2013
  • Grand Magazine: Bullying, Jan 3, 2013
  • Grand Magazine: Children's Museums: Jan, 3, 2013
  • Grand Magazine: Creative Writing w/your Grandchildren, June 27, 2012
  • Grand Magazine: Don't let your Grandchild Make you Sick, June 7, 2012
  • Grand Magazine: Fun in Central Illinois w/Grandkids, July 7, 2012
  • Grand Magazine: Fun things to do at Grandma's, June 4, 2012
  • Grand Magazine: Genealogy with your Grandchildren, November 9, 2012
  • Grand Magazine: Gift that keeps on Giving, June 26, 2012
  • Grand Magazine: Girls Just Want to Have Funds, July 7, 2012
  • Grand Magazine: Grand Times at the Public Library, July 7, 2012
  • Grand Magazine: Homespun Activities w/your Grandchild, June 27, 2012
  • Grand Magazine: School Pictures, Jan 4, 2013
  • Grand Magazine: Substitute teaching, Feb, 20, 2013
  • Grand Magazine: Vegetarian Grandchidlren, July 13, 2012
  • on Creative Writing Class for Children

Therapy publications by Debra Karplus

  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2004, 09/06, OT Bedside Manner Could Use Improvement
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 01/16, OT: Then & Now
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 01/20, Why Occupational Therapy?
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 01/27, Yoga & OT
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 02/04, Wheelchair Wonders
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 02/10, Home visit safety
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 02/17, Cursive writing
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 02/21, Grandmotherly advice
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 02/28, Mainstreaming for Special Ed
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 03/10, Disability Etiquette
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 03/17, Equestrian Therapy
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 03/24, Advertising OT
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 03/31, Lessons Learned
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 04/08, President with a Disability
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 04/14, Wheelchair Evolution
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 04/21, Favorite Patients
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 04/28, Rural OT
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 05/05, Bipolar Disorder
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 05/12, Splints
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 05/19, Willard and Spackman
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 05/27, Industrial Evaluations,
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 06/02, Presentations to Students
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 06/09, Insurance rules!
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 06/12, Working vacation for OTs
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 06/16, Drivers Ed and OT
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 06/23, Male OTs
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 06/30, Recruiters
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 07/07, Tattoos
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 07/14, Eleanor Clarke Slagle
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 07/21, The ADA
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 07/28, PhD in OT?
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 08/04, Handicapped parking
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 08/11, Squeamish OT
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 08/18, Gardening (tomatoes)
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 08/25, Manual Muscle Test
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 09/02, Medical Marijuana
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 09/08, Defining OT
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 09/15, Dress code
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 09/22, OT training?
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 09/29, Travelling OT
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 10/06, ADHD & OT
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 10/13, Stigma of Little School Bus
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 10/20, Malpractice
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 10/27, Disability Resource Expo
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 11/03, Voting & disability
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 11/10, PRN work & holidays
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 11/17, Staying well at work
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2014, 11/24, Service Dogs
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 03/18, Confidentiality
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 04/09, Disability & Mr Magoo
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 05/19, OT and Wii
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 05/26, COPD & OT
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 06/16, Singing & OT
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 06/23, Father's Day reminder
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 06/30, Online OT?
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 07/07, Choose health career & debt
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 07/13, Lou Gehrig's Disease
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 07/20, Backpacks
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 07/28, Fishing & ADA
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 08/04, Give credit
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 08/10, Getting along
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 08/17, Mindfulness
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 08/26, Aquatics
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 08/31, Fall prevention
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 09/09, Mom's advice
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 09/16, Respecting disabled
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 09/22, Laughter Yoga
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 09/30, Bike helmets
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 10/16, Joint pain & baby boomers
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 10/27, Helmets for falls
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 10/30, ALS eliminated
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2015, 11/10, Wheelchair sports
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2016, 01/12, English Learners
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2016, 01/18, Therapy on wheels
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2016, 01/26, Body mechanics
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2016, 02/01, Chair yoga
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2016, 02/08, Stroke & memory
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2016, 02/17, Spinal stenosis
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2016, 02/22, Explaining disability
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2016, 03/03, Health fairs
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2017, 01/05, OT for daily tasks
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2017, 01/09, Aging in place
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2017, 01/20, Reflections one-handed
  • Advance for OT Practitioners, 2017, 01/26, Dog OT
  • American Journal of Occupational Therapy, February 1994, Older Adults with Developmental Disabilities
  • American Journal of Occupational Therapy, June, 1989, Activites Handbook and Instructor's Guide
  • American Journal of Occupational Therapy, November 1994, ADL Evaluations in Long Term Care Facilities
  • Grand Magazine, June 12, 2012, Your Grandchild with ADHD
  • Grand Magazine, June 12, 2012, Your Grandchild with Asperger Syndrome
  • Grand Magazine, May 11, 2012, Your Grandchild with a Physical Disability
  • Grand Magazine, November 12, 2012, Grandchild with Developmental Disability
  • Grand Magazine, October 8, 2012, Your Grandchild & Special Education
  • Item writing for a therapy testing organization
  • Journal of Rehabilitation, July 1994, Invaluable Guide to Life after Stroke
  • Occupational Therapy Forum, April 3,1989, Wheelchair Accessibility
  • Occupational Therapy Forum, July 22,1994, Psychosocial Impact of Stroke on the Family
  • Occupational Therapy Forum, May 29,1989, The Self-Employed Occupational Therapist
  • Prime Life Times, 2014, 03, Working with an OT
  • Prime Life Times, 2016, 03, Bathroom Safety at Home
  • Prime Life Times, 2017, 02, Tasks One-handed
  • Prime Life Times, 2017, 05, Aging in Place
  • Prime Life Times, 2017, 06, Preparing for Hip Surgery
  • The Therapist in Business: an Introduction to Private Practice, a book published by Cross Country, 2005
  • writer for National Board Certifying Occupational Therapists (NBCOT)

Family, home and lifestyle articles by Debra Karplus or Lee Doppelt

  •, Finding Free Firewood
  • Back Home Magazine, November 2008, Scavenge for Firewood
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2009, 09, Your Kitchen: a Food Factory
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2010, 02, Food plus Family plus Friends
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2010, 03, Avoiding Layoffs
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2010, 04, Benefits of Volunteering
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2010, 09, Free Firewood
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2010, 10, Dumpster Diving with Panache
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2010, 11, Home Safe Home
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2010, 12, Bartering
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2011, 01,Those Who Can,Teach
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2011, 02, Tots & Tools
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2011, 03, IRA or Roth
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2011, 04, Resale Shops
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2011, 05, Get Paid for Research
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2011, 06, Roadside Assistance Plans
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2011, 08, Managing your Banking
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2011, 09, Cutting Back on Tree Trimming
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2011, 10, Should You Be Alarmed?
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2011, 11, Non-Traditional Housing
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2011, 11, Opting for Co-ops
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2012, 01, Be a Smarter Patient
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2012, 03, Save Money with a Motorcycle
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2012, 04, Farmers Market Selling
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2012, 05, Habitat Store
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2012, 05, Mulching
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2012, 06, Seven Habits of Frugal People
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2012, 07, Magic with Molasses
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2012, 07, Rain Gardens
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2012, 08, Senior Discounts
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2012, 08, Work at Home
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2012, 09, Composting
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2012, 10, Finding Cheap Airfares
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2012, 10, Soybeans
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2012, 12, Income from Direct Sales
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2013, 02, Mattresses
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2013, 03, Discount Airlines
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2013, 09, Baby Toys to Make
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2013, 10, Affordable Fences
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2013, 10, Buying a Chainsaw
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2013, 11, Cast Iron Cookware
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2014, 01, Carpeting purchase
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2014, 02, Community College
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2014, 02, Home Safety Improvements
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2014, 03, Income Tax Preparation
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2014, 03, Kale
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2014, 04, Lawn mower purchase
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2014, 05, Pet Sitters
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2014, 06, Car Rental Free
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2014, 06, Care Management for Elderly Parents
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2014, 07, Selling Stuff Online
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2014, 08, Services at Reduced Cost
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2014, 08, Zoo & Garden Membership
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2014, 09, Washing Machines
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2014, 10, Catering Cheap
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2014, 12, Flowers sent
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2015, 01, Auto loans
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2015, 03, Buying smart
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2015, 03, String trimmers
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2015, 06, Wedding out of town
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2015, 06, Who pays?
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2015, 07, Driveways
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2015, 08, Lottery playing
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2015, 09, Rent-free living
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2015, 10, Frugal or cheap?
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2015, 10, Winter clothes
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2015, 12, Dental scams
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2015, 12, Housing for adult kids
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2016, 01, Frugal not Poor
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2016, 02, Free college
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2016, 02, Retirement employment
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2016, 04, Self employment
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2016, 09, Lottery
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2016, 09, Moving experience
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2016, 11, Drapes & Curtains
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2017, 02, House for sale
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2017, 03, Garden labor-free
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2017, 03, House purchase
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2017, 04, Bicycle Maintenance
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2017, 04, Refrigerators
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2017, 05, Homeowner's associations
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2017, 06, House Won't Sell
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2017, 06, Rain Barrels
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2017, 07, Dehumidifiers
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2017, 08, Blenders/food processors
  • Dollar Stretcher Magazine, 2017, 10, Rent out rooms
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2009, 12, Simplify Your Financial Life
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2010, 06, Special Breaks for Aspiring Teachers
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2011, 05/11, Essential Appliances
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2011, 07/04, Water Problems
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2011, 08/22, Vegetarian Diet
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2011, 11,11, Gutter Cleaning
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2012, 01/10, Buying Tires
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2012, 01/10, Wood Heat
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2012, 02/06, Nursing Home Insurance
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2012, 05/07, Uses for Palletts
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2012, 09/03, Wedding Planners
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2012, 10/22, Reading Cheap
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2012, 11/18, Mystery Shopping
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2012, 11/23, Make Money by Blogging
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2013, 01/24, Meals while Travelling
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2013, 02/13, Auto advertising
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2013, 02/25, Vacuum Cleaners
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2013, 05/06, Breastfeeding
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2013, 05/31, Travel Insurance
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2013, 07/05, Spices & Health
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2013, 07/20, Emergency room visits
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2013, 07/23, Bicycle Shopping
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2013, 07/23, Home Project Management
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2013, 07/23, Kitchen Stoves
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2013, 07/23, Lawn Alternatives
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2013, 08/16, Sorghum sweetener
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2013, 08/19, Generosity & Frugality
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2013, 10/08, Lighthouse Lodging
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2013, 10/10, Raising Backyard Hens
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2013, 12/06, Bed & Breakfast at your Home
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2013, 12/16, Gym Membership
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2014, 01/15, Bed & Breakfast, your home
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2014, 01/29, Grow Sprouts
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2014, 02/20, Garden plot rented
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2014, 03/28, Baby Food Homemade
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2014, 04/04, A New Roof
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2014, 04/11, TV Studio Audience Participant
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2014, 05/19, Flying with Babies
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2014, 06/09, Home Inspections
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2014, 06/16, Baby Boomer Financial Timeline
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2014, 08/04, Childcare
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2014, 09/12, Chimney Care
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2014, 09/29, Service Auctions
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2014, 10/02, Luggage
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2014, 10/14, Grocery savings
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2014, 10/17, Sell your home
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2014, 12/08, Back to the Land
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2014, 12/16, Baby strollers
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2015, 01/15, Mobile Homes
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2015, 03/01, Basements kept Dry
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2015, 03/23, Group Travel
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2015, 03/30, Shoes purchased
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2015, 04/13, Millionaires
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2015, 04/20, National Parks
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2015, 05/04, Foraging
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2015, 06/01, Home mobility equipment
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2015, 06/22. Funerals
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2015, 07/06, Car sharing
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2015, 10/19, SAD Light Boxes
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2015, 10/19, Snow removal
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2015, 11/09, Rewiring an Old House
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2015, 12/28, Gym equip at home
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2016, 01/18, Quit stressful job
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2016, 03/07, Estate sale income
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2016, 03/21, Disability-friendly home
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2016, 04/06, Class action suits
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2016, 05/16, Pet transport
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2016, 05/23, Backpacks
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2016, 08/01, Silver Sneakers
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2016, 10/03, Arthritis Devices
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2016, 11/07, Crawl space
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2016, 11/28, Malt
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2016, 12/11, Television purchase
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 01/09, Cruises cut rate
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 01/30, Beekeeping
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 02/20, Piano tuned
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 03/06, Transport Motor Homes
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 03/20, Garage door
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 04/17, Train travel
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 04/24, Asbestos removal
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 05/29, Sofa purchase
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 06/05, Friends & financial advice
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 06/05, Heating ducts cleaned
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 06/12, Power washing
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 06/26, House won't sell
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 07/03, Age in Place
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 07/10, Dehumidifiers
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 08/01, Injury prep
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 08/21, Dog walker
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 09/18, Car seats
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 09/25, Radon
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 10/02, Goose control
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 10/09, Car purchase
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 10/16, Lists to save money
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 10/16, Mold solutions
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 10/30, Money-smart preschoolers
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 11/06, Golf cart transport
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2017, 11/17, Pet for family
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2018, 01/29, Frugal in suburbia
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2018, 02/12, College online
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2018, 02/19, Tutoring service
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2018, 02/26, Cruise ship job
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2018, 04/02, Sunglasses
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2018, 05/14, Sibling disparity
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2018, 05/14, Sibling disparity
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2018, 05/21, Cookers in kitcher
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2018, 05/28, Roommates
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2018, 06/18, Retreats reduce stress
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2018, 06/25, Selling creations
  • Dollar Stretcher, 2018, 10/08, Vaporizers and humidifiers
  • Inside Glenview Magazine, 2014, 01, Going Vegetarian
  • Inside Glenview Magazine, 2014, 03, Finding the Right Firewood
  • Inside Glenview Magazine, 2014, 04, Growing Sprouts
  • Inside Glenview Magazine, 2014, 05, Bake your own Bread
  • News-Gazette, 2012, 11/04, Places to visit, Lake Superior
  • News-Gazette, 2012, 11/25, Places to visit, Salt Lake City
  • News-Gazette, 2013, 06/23, Hamilton County Indiana
  • News-Gazette, 2013, 08/25, Traverse City Michigan
  • News-Gazette, 2014, 05/25, Boulder Colorado
  • News-Gazette, 2015, 06/19, Minneapolis-St.Paul
  • News-Gazette, 2015, 09/20, Galesburg Illinois
  • News-Gazette, 2015, 10/18, Omaha
  • News-Gazette, 2015, 11/15, Iowa's Lincoln Highway
  • News-Gazette, 2015, 12/20, Illinois Great River Road
  • Prime Life Times, 2013, 12, Museums in Champaign County
  • Prime Life Times, 2014, 01, Mahomet, Illinois
  • Prime Life Times, 2014, 02, Great Second Chances
  • Prime Life Times, 2015, 08, Choral Union
  • Prime Life Times, 2018, 01, Mahjong Madness

FICTION by Lee Doppelt

  • Mr. America Mirage, novella by Lee Doppelt, available on

Entrepreneur Interviews

  • Young Money, 2010, 03/30, Amos Winbush of CyberSynchs
  • Young Money, 2010, 03/23, Rob Carpenter of Friendgiftr

Business Editorials

  • Business Week Magazine, 2006, 10/09, Launching a Career
  • Fortune Magazine, 2008, 07/21, Hoist by our own Petard

Money, Business & Careers

  • Entrepreneur Briefing, available on
  • Forbes: 2012, April, Sell at the Farmer's Market
  • Young Money Magazine, 2009, Spring,Getting the Government to Pay for College
  • Young Money Magazine, 2009, Summer, Business of Loan Forgiveness
  • Young Money, 2008, 11/19, Is Being an Entrepreneur Right for you?
  • Young Money, 2008, 12/10, The ABCs of Substitute Teaching
  • Young Money, 2008, 12/11, The Election, Change and You
  • Young Money, 2008, 12/24, Six Ways to Avoid those Extra Baggage Charges
  • Young Money, 2008, 12/29, Who will Prepare your Taxes this Year?
  • Young Money, 2009, 01/05, The Basics of Stock Market Investing
  • Young Money, 2009, 01/14, Find a Stock Broker
  • Young Money, 2009, 01/21, What's the Best Credit Card for You
  • Young Money, 2009, 01/28, Community College or University?
  • Young Money, 2009, 02/03, Study Abroad
  • Young Money, 2009, 02/18, Fix, replace or repair
  • Young Money, 2009, 03/18, Six Ways to Raise Money Savvy Kids
  • Young Money, 2009, 03/25, Job Benefits
  • Young Money, 2009, 04/08, Worried About the Future? Get Covered
  • Young Money, 2009, 04/16, Beginners Guide to Dividends
  • Young Money, 2009, 04/23, Find a Government Internship
  • Young Money, 2009, 04/29, FDIC
  • Young Money, 2009, 06/03, Investing in Gold
  • Young Money, 2009, 06/11, Beyond Student Loans
  • Young Money, 2009, 07/01, Filling out a W4 Form
  • Young Money, 2009, 07/02, Being an Occupational Therapist
  • Young Money, 2009, 09/09, Background Checks
  • Young Money, 2009, 09/16, Obama health reform
  • Young Money, 2009, 11/16, Funds for Online College
  • Young Money, 2010, 01/06, Guide to Getting into Politics
  • Young Money, 2010, 02/24, Live & Work in your College Town
  • Young Money, 2010, 03/24, Career & Personality Tests
  • Young Money, 2010, 05/28, Travel Destinations
  • Young Money, 2010, 06/08, Work & Travel
  • Young Money, 2010, 06/23, Become a Certified Coach
  • Young MOney, 2010, 07/01, Become a Better Public Speaker
  • Young Money, 2010, 07/06, Career in Law
  • Young Money, 2010, 07/08, Your Credit Score
  • Young Money, 2010, 07/10, Choosing the Right Checking Account

National Gallery of Writing Publications

  • #1501828 A Career in Law
  • #1501106 Adapting to Adaptive Equipment
  • #1501931 Write an Excellent College Application Essay
  • #1408918 Superior Camp Experience for Children
  • #1501325 How to Keep Substitute Teachers Happy - Spending -- Finance

Yahoo! Finance: Investing Picks

Yahoo! Finance: Most Popular