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.



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
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  • #1501931 Write an Excellent College Application Essay
  • #1408918 Superior Camp Experience for Children
  • #1501325 How to Keep Substitute Teachers Happy - Spending -- Finance

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