These Are The Most Creative Baby Photos You’ve Ever Seen
If you’re a parent, sharing photos of your little cutie on Instagram and Facebook is impossible to resist. There are so many special moments you want your family and friends to see and be a part of. Author and illustrator Adele Enersen took the game to the next level with multimedia photos of her son and daughter that are beyond cool. Now she’s releasing a new book called Vincent and the Night, a bedtime story with breathtaking photo collages of her son, Vincent. We talked with Enersen about how she comes up with her awesome ideas and tips for taking your own creative photos.
How She Brainstormed Her Brilliant Idea For The Book
Enersen tells us her firstborn daughter was a sound sleeper, so Enersen started taking lots of adorable photos of her little girl in dreamland, which inspired her book, When My Baby Dreams. But her son Vincent was not a sound sleeper at all, so she had to come up with a new idea for him. “I really wanted to find his story and make a good storyline first. Then it was so obvious, I was going to make a story about all those things he liked to do instead of sleeping,” she told us.
She says that he woke up several times throughout the night — every night — but it was actually Enersen herself who had a fear of the darkness, not little Vincent. “I’ve been afraid of the dark since I was a kid, and I still sleep with the light on if I’m sleeping alone,” she admits. “As a mother, you can’t do that. You have to be the one who runs through the darkness to your baby.” She learned as a mom that it was her job to make the darkness soothing and comforting for her baby, and this is reflected in the book.
Behind The Scenes
Looking at her photos, you’ll see that she creates beautiful backdrops with objects that seem to be lying around the house. Here’s how it actually went down: “I took the photos of my fussing son against our white sofa, edited the background a bit and started doodling things around him. Usually his natural movements guided me,” she says.
Enersen used her smartphone camera to start and sometimes a Canon digital camera to take the photos. Adobe Illustrator was her tool for the drawing bits. As for her favorite photo in the book, she says she loves the one of Vincent pulling the cat’s tail, hinting at a bit of mischief. “She’s a very sweet and tolerant kitty,” she says. “The kids have learned to be a lot more nice than naughty with her.”
Her Tips For You
If you want to step up your own photo game, Enersen says her biggest tip is finding your focus. “I like to follow people who are consistent about what they post,” she says. “If you do creative baby pics, do them. If you cook stuff for your kids, post just that. Your kid’s daily hairdo? Do it. If you like to take microfashion pics of your kid’s outfit of the day, do that.” If you’re photographing babies and toddlers, Enersen says to use natural light and to just let the kids do their thing and act natural. The photos will come out way better than if you try to make them pose.
Which creative photographers do you like to follow on Instagram? Tell us in the comments, and don’t forget to check out Vincent And The Night, out April 21.
Welcome to Selfmade Finance School, our new money series with Block Advisors to help small business owners with their tax, bookkeeping, and payroll needs year-round. This week, we explore the tax implications of bringing family members into your business.
The question for today is this: Does hiring your family members make sense for your business? Let me be clear. This is not a piece about whether hiring your family members makes sense for your relationships with those family members. As someone who is part of a family business, I could fill up a lot more than 600 words on my opinions about that. For today's purposes, we focus on whether it makes sense from an overall "good business and tax implication" perspective. As it turns out, there is a decent amount of tax nuance when it comes to employing your family. Let's break it down based on relationship to the employee:
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Spouses Who Are In Business Together
Personally, if I had to be in business with my husband, it would not go well. However, many couples build viable, strong businesses together and I say, good for them! Depending on how you have your business entity structured, it will make a big difference on the tax treatment of you and your spouse working as partners. Because a business jointly owned and operated by a married couple is generally treated as a partnership for Federal tax purposes, the spouses must comply with filing and record keeping requirements imposed on partnerships and their partners. The election to file two Schedule C (Form 1040) forms, (one for each spouse) permits certain married co-owners to avoid filing partnership returns, provided that each spouse separately reports a share of all the businesses' items of income, gain, loss, deduction, and credit. Under the election, both spouses will be subject to self-employment tax and on net earnings from self-employment and receive credit for Social Security earnings.
One Spouse Employs Another
If you have a dynamic where your spouse is an employee of your business, then your spouse's wages are subject to income tax withholding, Social Security and Medicare taxes. If you are self-employed (not a corporation or a partnership), your spouse's pay does not have to be included in your federal unemployment tax account (FUTA) contributions and payments. However, if your business is a corporation or a partnership you must include that spouse's pay in your unemployment tax contribution calculation.
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You Employ Your Child
First, let's be clear. I work in my family business, but I am an adult, so I am treated just like a normal employee. However, if you, for example, run a family restaurant and want to hire your children under 18 to work for you, there are some tax benefits. But first, you should check with your state for rules on how many hours minors can work (in non-agricultural jobs) and reference the Fair Labor Standards Act for information on limitations on the kinds of work children can perform.
"This is an often overlooked or under-utilized strategy. Paying your children for true services they provide in your business can be a powerful tax-saving tool," says Cathi Reed, Block Advisors Regional Director. "If you are a sole-proprietorship or single member LLC, and the child is less than 18 years of age, the business is not required to withhold FICA or payroll taxes. The child can use his or her standard deduction against income you pay."
You Hire Your Parent
Oh dear. If you are brave enough to do this, know that you will need to pay Social Security and Medicare taxes on your parent's wages and make the appropriate withholdings, but you don't have to pay unemployment taxes. Now all you have to do is convince your parent that you are the boss. Have fun with that!
Is Hiring Family Members Worth It For The Tax Benefits?
"There are some positive tax advantages to hiring family members. It's important to treat a family member like any other employee. Hiring your children can result in substantial savings for businesses. Make sure your child has real, age-appropriate work to do and a reasonable pay rate, comparable to other employees. Consult with a Block Advisors small business certified tax pro to ensure that you are complying with all requirements," advises Reed. "Block Advisors, a team within H&R Block, is dedicated to meeting the tax, bookkeeping and payroll needs of small business owners year-round. To start working with the tax experts at Block Advisors, visit blockadvisors.com."
In my opinion, you should not hire a family member solely because of the tax benefits. You should always hire based on whether that person is right for the job and keep in mind how this hire could materially impact your relationship with that person and others in your family. Finally, as I mentioned, make sure you have a tax professional on your team when making these determinations. As you can see, things can get a little tricky!
*All details were sourced from IRS.gov and blockadvisors.com