This Is What a Wedding in the Desert Should Look Like
What do you get when you cross a gorgeous couple with a major dose of wanderlust? A DIY weddingand a destination wedding that hits all the right travel notes. Jimmy and Steph of St. Louis, MO packed up their hand-written wedding vows, handmade wedding accents and a handful of their closest friends and headed out West for a week-long celebration on the banks of Lake Powell in Utah. Read on to see how they incorporated all their DIY wedding ideas into one breathtaking setting.
1. Lakeside (and Cliffside) Location: It really doesn’t get anymore dreamy than this. Jimmy and Steph fell in love with the dramatic brick-red cliffs and blue water of Lake Powell on a random trip out West, and both knew that this was the perfect spot for their big day. Since there is not much accommodation out there, they hired houseboats to serve as accommodations for the week. The wedding party ended up at this prime (and totally private) waterfront spot on Lake Powell’s Padre Bay.
2. Bloom-Free Bouquets: Having a wedding on a desolate stretch of beach in a Utah canyon has its challenges, including how to decorate with flowers. Steph skipped live flowers (which would pretty much wilt instantly in the heat) in favor of these super chic DIYed bouquets of paper flowers. She cut up maps and pretty craft paper to form the petals and then added lace and rhinestone accents for extra pizzazz. The best part? The bouquets lasted long after the wedding!
3. Travel Trunks: Since the St. Louis, MO couple and their guests had to travel so far to get to the wedding location, a travel theme seemed to make perfect sense. Steph rifled through thrift stores and antique markets to find accent decor like these vintage gray suitcases.
4. Vintage Vibe: Steph imbued the long reception table with that same old-school travel vibe with these easy peasy DIY burlap and lace table runners. The antique cameras add another playful nod to the past.
5. Twinkling Lights: Once the sun went down, the incredible blanket of stars in the sky provided almost enough light to keep the party going, but not quite. Strings of twinkle lights stretched over the reception table and the sandy dance floor meant Steph, Jimmy and their guests could shimmy and shake all night long.
6. Maps to the Max: Maps, maps and more maps! A simple decoupage DIY turned old wine bottles into on-theme travel trinkets, while more map and craft paper flowers added an extra dose of pretty.
7. A Family (and Friends) Affair: Jimmy and Steph wanted to keep their wedding small, but they weren’t sure if they could convince their close friends and family to make the trip out to Utah. But the destination gamble paid off: “It was so exciting to see their reactions as they arrived,” said Steph, “And now they all want to go back!”
8. Firework Ending: Jimmy and Steph first met as fireworks filled the air on the Fourth of July, so it only made sense to end their wedding extravaganza on the same explosive note. A sandy beach, lots of s’mores, fireworks and good friends and family made for one incredible night.
The creative couple also runs a videography studio out of St. Louis, so they put their mad skills to work and created their own super inspiring wedding video. Check it out below:
Congrats, Jimmy and Steph!
Photography: Miller + Miller Wedding Photography
Videography: Captured in Frames
Caterer: Antelope Point Marina
Houseboats: Forever Resorts
Do you have a DIY wedding that you’d like to share with us? Leave us a note in the comments, or email us at email@example.com.
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