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Tuesday, July 28 2009

Most of my clients own pets.  Dogs, cats, pot belly pigs, fish...

I have never had a dog for a pet - or a pot belly pig for that matter!  I've had fish (low maintenance) and a few cats (relatively low maintenance).  Anyone with a pet knows that they become a member of the family and when they go missing, our hearts are broken.

When indoor cats slip outside, most of them don't make it back home. Less than 2% of all "lost" cats are reunited with their owners. That is a really scary number. Especially considering how easily this could happen. It only takes a split second.

This is why I feel that it is absolutely necessary for every indoor cat to wear an ID Tag. I really believe this is one of the most important things you can do for your cat.

Today, I'd like to provide a few quick tips to help you find a missing pet and what you can do to prevent this from ever happening to you and your precious pet. 

(The following information was provided by Dr. Jon of 

If your pet is lost:

  • Search the area. Talk to the neighbors and passersby.

  • Walk or drive through the area several times daily. Early morning and evening are the best times to look for a lost pet.

  • Hand out a recent photograph of your pet and information on how you can be reached.

  • Post signs in the neighborhood with your pet's description, a photo, your phone number and information about ID tags.

  • Put signs in grocery stores, community centers, veterinary offices and other high traffic locations.

  • Place advertisements in newspapers and with radio stations. Include your pet's sex, age, weight, breed, color and special markings.

  • The Internet may be helpful in tracking down a lost pet, although its search is wide and random.  

Prevent your cat from ever getting lost!

  • If you have an indoor/outdoor cat, don't leave your animal outside when you're gone for long periods of time.

  • If you are gone for a long time, leave your pet with a responsible person or get a house sitter.

  • Jot down the numbers from your pet's rabies tag, write your phone number on his tag, and take a good photo of your pet.

  • Consider having a computer microchip implanted under your pet's skin. Shelters and veterinary hospitals use microchips to identify lost animals and reunite them with their owners.


  • Every pet should have an ID tag. Even indoor cats. If your cat were to ever sneak out, an ID tag is your cat's best chance of being reunited with you. It's like an "Amber Alert" for pets. If your pet is lost, they will immediately notify humane societies and shelters within a 50-mile radius, and post a missing pet alert to websites that help find lost pets.  It has some very nice features including a toll-free hotline for owners of lost pets and the people who find them ... and the hotline is there for you 24 hours a day, 356 days a year. This is one of the best pet protection programs I've ever seen.


  • One of the BEST ways to help bring a lost pet back home to you is to protect him with proper identification ... on his collar, an ID tag, or with a microchip.


I hope these suggestions will help you find your missing pet and more importantly, prevent this from ever happening in the first place.  Thanks to Dr. Jon for these wonder tips.

If you have any organizing questions or problems you would like me to address, send me an email at and I will be glad to help.



Posted by: Audrey Cupo AT 02:00 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, July 23 2009

My son recently graduated from high school.  He is continuing his education in the Fall at a local tech school for web design.

Around the time that he was going through the major transition from high school student to graduate, I was writing my "U Can Do It Budgeting System" e-book.  In speaking with various people, I began to recognize that there is a large group of individuals who need to be educated about finances and budgeting...high school and college students.

Did you know that only a quarter of teens have any idea how credit card interest works?  The average college student carries nearly $3,000 in credit card debt.  A bad credit rating can affect your child's ability to buy a car, a house or even get a job.

As a parent, it is important to discuss these and other money related issues with your teen before they leave the nest. But how?  Some parents are not confident that they have enough knowledge about finances, feeling they don't know how to give advice or even where to begin.

To get this important conversation started, start involving your teen in the family's financial situation.  You don't have to give away the ship but you can let your kids see you paying bills and getting their input some budgeting decisions.  Give them an example where a choice needs to be made.  Have them realize that in order to go away for vacation, you need to save up a bit to do so.  Ask them how they suggest you do that.   Showing them that the balance between spending and saving is so important and will take them a long way. 

If there is a big ticket item that your kids wants, don't just give it to them.  Explain to them that they can earn the money, either by getting a job or getting paid to do chores around the house that perhaps you would pay someone else to do so they can fund the cost themselves.  It will make it a lot more valuable to them.

Before your teens leave home, your teen needs to know how to balance spending with savings and the details of day-to-day living, such as how to balance a check book and how to stick to a budget.  The "U Can Do It Budgeting System" is a great tool to teach those who need help creating and sticking to a budget.  It is simple and easy enough that it works for teens as well as adults. (See the "budgeting system" tab for more information.)

Some great times to initiate this conversation with your teen is perhaps at snack time.  Get them to sit at the table with you with some fresh baked cookies and a glass of milk to get the conversation started.  I have found that it's a lot easier to have a deeper discussion with my teen when we are driving in the car.  I have his undivided attention.  Share some chores together.  By sharing some time together to get things done gives you a good opportunity to open up the discussion of finances.

Bottom line, get this conversation going.  It's important to your teen's future. 


Posted by: Audrey Cupo AT 09:40 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, July 15 2009

When is the last time you looked around your house?  I mean really looked!  Have you become comfortable with your surroundings?  It's nice to feel comfortable in your home but sometimes we get so comfortable we forget to take a close look at what can sometimes use some improvement.

Most recently, I had a client hire me to organize a few rooms in her home.  When I first spoke with her, she was focusing on the home office and garage.  After we spent some more time talking and she began to take a closer look around her home, she realized that it was more disorganized than she originally thought.  She realized that not only did her home office and garage need some attention, but also her kitchen and bedrooms.

I mention this because we do tend to get "comfortable" and perhaps get used to seeing things the way they have been for so long and don't see that they might need some change.  Sometimes it's function; sometimes it's design.  Sometimes it's both.

The next time you walk through your home, do it with a fresh set of eyes and see what others might see that could use some improvement. 

If you have difficulty figuring out what needs to be done, you might want to consider using a professional organizer to help you not only see the issues but with a fresh set of eyes, see the solutions.  Every room has potential and sometimes you need a professional to show you what that potential can be.

If you have any questions about this topic or have any other organizing issues you would ike me to address, simply send me an email at and I will be glad to help.


Posted by: Audrey Cupo AT 05:00 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, July 08 2009

Now that the kids are out of school and summer is in full swing, we don't have the time or want to take the time to clean the house.  We want to be outside, on vacation, taking day trips and participating in other summer time activities.

But -- we still need to clean the house.  How do we do both?  We "speed clean"!!

I have compiled some Quick Tips for A Better Space which are great time-saving tips and techniques for cleaning your home in less than an hour.  You can do it all at once or select several rooms a day to do a quick cleaning.  By using these techniques, you can be sure that your home will be clean and you will be ready for summer fun.  

Bedroom - Make your bed first thing in the morning, put your clothes in the hamper, straighten up your night stand and bureau surfaces.  Then quickly dust and vaccum.

Bathroom - Wipe down the shower door or tub surround when finished with your shower.  Spray the entire shower and curtain liner with shower mist (the Scrubbing Bubbles Automatic Shower Cleaner works well).  Take a disinfecting wipe and wipe the sink and faucet, counter top and toilet seat and rim.  Vaccum the area rug and wipe the floor with a damp mop.  (I like the Wet Jet system for quick clean-ups.)

Living Room -  Pick up things off the floor and use a handheld vacuum to pick up crumbs and dust bunnies.  Fluff pillows and throws.  Straighten up books and magazines, throwing away newspapers and store ads.  Put away CDs and DVDs after each use.  Dust from top to bottom, saving the vacuuming for last.

Kitchen - Start with the sink and wipe it down after doing the dishes.  Wipe down the stove top and counters.  Wipe the table.  Use a dust mop, Swiffer Sweeper or vacuum to clean up crumbs from the floor.

With these suggestions, you will find that your home will remain clean and organized and you will have more time to spend enjoying the Summer!

If you have any questions about this topic or have any other organizing problems you would like me to address, simply send me an email at and I will be glad to help.

Have a great week!


Posted by: Audrey Cupo AT 02:10 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
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