Ok, the .htaccess file doesn't seem to be working correctly. But I've moved on.
First I saved a test.php file to the remote server that just had the <?php phpinfo(); ?> line in it and it worked. Then I saved a page as donate.php (it works) and I setup a cart object.
Then I created a database called ctm_donate using the MySQL Command Line Generator.
Then I modified the blue_sky_music.sql statement to a ctm_donate.sql statement and I removed or modified the items within to reflect my cart needs.
So that step looks good on my local testing server.
I'm setting up the cart now but I still have no clue on the validation, etc., that I mentioned in my first post above.