NOT be one of those that never reopen. Plan your recovery before its needed. To see the supplies that recommends please visit Common sense tells us, that businesses should keep copies of their most important files offsite. Personally, I use several methods but most notably, I use Carbonite’s online backup service. For about $50 per year, I’m assured of complete recovery of my files in the case of disaster – or if I reformat my PC (as I did recently) and need to restore my files. Also, dvd’s of my information is stored in fireproof safes, and the really urgent information is easily grabbed as I’m running out the door. Be prepared. Your equipment should be insured. Don’t use a rider on your homeowner’s policy, you should have business insurance that covers your equipment. All of it. Make an inventory of all the software you have, whether its installed or not, list your peripherals List your books. If you have a radio in your office, list that! List EVERYTHING! Take pictures of your equipment, store your receipts with your inventory, OFF SITE. My Office inventory is electronic, and is stored offsite, AND backed up regularly. Keep your inventory up to date. When you prepare your inventory, don’t forget about your various logins and account access codes and passwords. I have a book of keycodes, kept in my fireproof safe. For my more sensitive logins, those are encrypted on a flashdrive in the safe. Keep this list as up to date as possible. During severe weather, surges often cripple your equipment, which is why it is vital your equipment be protected with high quality surge protection, and if you lose power suddenly, having an uninteruptable power supply (UPS) can give you the time you need to save what you’re working on and shut your equipment down. High quality UPS systems also include surge protection. Include your PHONES on the surge protection. Often, your telephone is one piece of equipment that is forgotten about when it comes to equipment protection. Visit for more information about disaster preparedness for your home and your business. Become familiar with what you need to do, and what needs to be on hand. Stay alert to the news, and be prepared. Wishing you safe, Kathy Ritchie]]>

Update: Just this week I was able to get a really good deal on a new PDA/phone (next to nothing!) when my wireless contract was up. Now Im using an HTC Wing, which has all the bells I could have hoped for. My only hint of an issue is that the integrated keyboard is a bit small – but that could also be that it’s new to me. Main thing is that I’m able to be “connected” one of several different ways. (GPRS, wifi, bluetooth) So the above article, while it doesn’t apply specifically to me now, I still believe it. Have a great May! Kathy Ritchie, Editor]]>

I’m happy to announce that my photograph, “Ladybugs on Yucca” has won the prestigious Crystal Award Trophy from the International Society of Photographers! To see the award: For more of my photography, please visit my gallery. ]]>