22 Creative Baby Gifts to Buy or DIY
Whether you’re shopping for yourself, a friend or a family member, congratulations! It seems like everyone is announcing a pregnancy, and it’s time to start thinking about all those baby shower gifts we’re going to give. We’ve got an idea for every little one and all the new parents on your list. From crafty to cute, techy to a little bit crazy, we’ve come up with 22 creative baby shower gifts that are colorful, charming and more useful than the mountain of blankets and itty bitty things those tiny babes will grow out of in a week.
1. Circus Animal Jars: You can paint these awesome jars any color you want, from bold primary colors to glam golds and pinks. Fill them with pacifiers or baby socks to gift, and then Mom can fill them with snacks or stuff for the changing table! (via Evermine)
4. Quilted Playmat: A playmat makes a great gift for any time of year. You can throw it on the grass in August or lay it on the living room floor in December. It comes together really quickly since it’s not basted, and is completely washable. (via The Purl Bee)
6. Mounted Stuffed Animal Head ($158): Trendy baby definitely requires some faux taxidermy in the nursery!
7. Sock Monkey and Friend: Sock monkeys are a classic and super adorable project. Once you’ve mastered the fine art of the sock monkey, you can make variations to create some friends like this cute raccoon! (via A Beautiful Mess)
8. Iiamo Go Self-Heating Bottle ($28): Ideal for the parents who are always on the go, this bottle will warm up milk to a perfect 98 degrees in only four minutes. It doesn’t require electricity, so it’s a must-have for travel or to avoid those late night treks to the kitchen.
9. Disco Jelly Bean ($80): Doesn’t this just look like the most comfortable thing in the world? We are a little jealous of baby…
10. Baby Bullet ($59): Huge props to the mom who is committed to making all-natural baby food, and this little Bullet blender will make her life just a teeny bit easier. Its three-piece batch bowl is perfect for blending large quantities of baby food + it comes with six small, resealable cups to keep food fresh while traveling.
12. Fortune Cookie Booties ($29): These are the reason people have babies… so we can buy adorable fortune cookie booties that even come with good fortunes!
13. Sophie the Giraffe ($20): Hailed as the world’s only 100% natural rubber teething toy, and the most gifted baby item on Amazon, Sophie the Giraffe has been called a miracle worker for grumpy, teething babies.
14. Infantino Squeeze Station ($25): The Squeeze Station is a one-stop solution that presses delicious, homemade baby food into easy-to-store, ready-to-serve pouches. A super idea for taking snacks on the go, without needing spoons or bowls. This device will come in handy long into the toddler years.
15. Halo Sleep Sack ($22-25): As much as we adore beautiful baby blankets, the safest bed for a newborn is one without any blankets or pillows. A cozy sleep sack is a wise choice for keeping baby protected and warm.
16. Wooden iPhone Teether ($12): We can’t decide if this is hilarious or ridiculous. We’ll let you be the judge.
17. Burt’s Bees for Baby ($36): There is nothing better than soft, soft baby skin, and here is a lovely gift set to keep their skin as soft and natural as the day they were born. This bundle even includes a little surprise for Mom.
18. Hand Stamped Onesie: We love us a good onesie, and this hand-stamped DIY is sure to keep any little one headed in the right direction. Once you learn how easy stamping is, you might want even to create some matching leggings and a couple bibs! (via For The Love Of)
19. Blank Canvas Bib ($15): Every meal is a masterpiece with this funny bib. Printed with a gallery scene, silhouetted figures stare up at baby’s dribble du jour.
What do you think of these fun baby gifts? Will you be buying or DIY-ing for your next baby shower? Let us know in the comments below!
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