15 Creative First Dates You Should Try This Summer
First dates are all about making a good first impression and igniting that initial spark. When tasked with picking a spot for a date, you want a location with great vibes and an activity that allows for a free flow of conversation. Instead of going to your local chain to meet up for drinks, try something exciting and unexpected. Scroll on for 15 creative date ideas that are fun and memorable.
1. Check Out Your Local Farmers’ Market: Meet up for a coffee beforehand and head over to a farmers’ market to check out the produce (and each other). If the date goes well, you can share a meal later that week with some of the goodies you picked up. (Photo via J Wiley)
2. Take a Cooking Class: What’s more romantic than an evening of flirting and consuming delicious food? Even if the date fizzles, you’ll have learned how to make an amazing new dish.
3. Volunteer Together: Get to know their compassionate side by spending an afternoon volunteering at an animal shelter, handing out meals at a food bank or spending time at a home for the elderly. (Photo via Money Crashers)
4. Act like a Tourist: Is there a tourist attraction in your town that you’ve never been to? Explore it together, and you’ll be sure to learn a lot about each other and your town. Cheesy tourist pictures are optional, but strongly encouraged. (Photo via Meghan Andrews Photography)
5. Movies in the Park: Check your city’s listings for movies in the park, and invite your crush. Bring a picnic dinner and turn it into a fun twist on a traditional dinner-and-a-movie date.
6. Take a Brewery Tour: Many breweries offer behind-the-scenes tours of their manufacturing process, along with a tasting at the end. It’s a low-key date and educational. We have a sneaking suspicion your date will be bragging to their buddies about this one.
7. Triathlon Date: No, we’re not suggesting you run, bike and swim (unless you really want to). The idea behind this date is to pick three activities to do together. For example: Meet up for a morning hike, head to lunch and then grab a drink. (Photo via Ben Haisch)
10. Brunch: Have a favorite brunch spot? Meet up with your date and play 20 questions over eggs Benedict. (Photo via Anneli Marinovich)
11. Bring Half a Date: You plan one half, and they plan the other half. The element of surprise adds a sweet twist to your first date. (Photo via Fotos by Fola)
12. Take a Coffee Walk: Instead of sitting at a coffee shop, order your favorite drinks to go and take a walk around a park. It will give you an opportunity to enjoy a beautiful spring day. (Photo via Mia Jade Weddings)
13. Have a Five-Course Dinner at Different Places: Order an appetizer, soup, main dish, dessert and coffee at a different restaurant each time. Take turns picking spots, and you’ll get to try all those places you’ve been dying to visit, plus discover one or two new ones along the way.
14. Visit a New Neighborhood: Does your city have a historic district or pedestrian mall you’ve been dying to check out? Plan an afternoon exploring this new-to-you part of the city. You’ll get bonus points if you pick up some cheesy tourist souvenirs. (via @twotrends)
15. Visit an Obscure Museum: Spend an afternoon learning about something you know nothing about. Whether it’s cryptozoology, bad art or SPAM, there’s a museum for every first date. (via @officials_c_)
Where is your favorite spot for a first date? Hit us up in the comments!
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