10 Yummy Food Swaps for an Ultra Healthy Picnic
Not much can trump a gorgeous day spent eating and drinking on the beach or picnicking in the park. Whether you’re on a playful first date, sprawled out reading a new book about work to remember how much you love summer or hanging out with friends in your go-to garden, packing your picnic basket with healthy eats and drinks can help you keep your energy levels high all day long. Read on for 10 super simple swaps you can make to get fab nutritional benefits while snacking on tasty treats. Yum!
1. Perfectly Portioned Rosé Instead of a Pitcher of Sangria. Sangria is a fruity and fun picnic drink, but it’s packed with tons of sugar and can go down a little too easily. Swap your drink out for a mini bottle of crisp rosé, like our fave, Les Dauphins Cotes Du Rhone Rosé (price varies). You’ll enjoy just the right amount.
2. Nut Butter Instead of Cheese Spread. Leave the cheese spread at home and snap up some packets of almond or cashew butter for crackers, or pair them with fruit instead. Packed with protein, nut butter will keep you more full and prevent unnecessary noshing later.
3. Whole Grain Crackers Instead of Bread. Who doesn’t love to enjoy a freshly baked baguette during a picnic in the park? We sure do. Unfortunately, our adored picnic carb doesn’t have as much fiber as equally enjoyable options. Make a simple swap and grab a box of whole grain crackers to add in the nutritional benefit of quinoa, pumpkin seeds, flax or whatever you choose, for a healthier fix.
4. Protein Snack Bites Instead of Cookies. Cookies, brownies, cakes… oh my. Since you have to have something sweet in your picnic basket, think about toting along a batch of delicious protein-packed snack bites. They’re as easy to share as the more traditional treats AND they’re better for you. What a win-win.
5. Soda Water Instead of Tonic Water. If you’re crafting cocktails or mocktails, switching out tonic water for soda water can save you tons of calories and added sugar. If the taste with soda is too strong to bear at first, drop a few slices of fruit into your drink, add more ice and a splash of all natural fruit juice, and sip slowly. We promise you’ll be refreshed in no time.
6. Fruit-Infused Water Instead of Caffeinated, Iced Drinks. Staying hydrated is essential when you’re spending a day in the sun, so make sure you bring plenty of H20 with you. Though caffeine *doesn’t* actually cause dehydration, it won’t exactly help you stay hydrated either. Sip smartly to avoid headaches and to make sure you get the right amount of fluid on a warm day.
7. Hummus Instead of Dip. Made from chickpeas, hummus has tons of benefits that healthy eaters are crazy about, which include a mega dose of key vitamins and minerals with a hearty amount of protein. If you’re not a hummus lover, go for a homemade guacamole. Avocado is a total super food with healthy monounsaturated fats, vitamins A and C and fiber.
8. Veggie Sticks Instead of Chips. You’ll definitely want something to dip into your hummus or heart-healthy guac, so pack your picnic basket with veggie sticks. Carrots, celery and bell pepper strips are all tasty options that will pair well with real cheeses, meats and whole grain crackers.
9. Hard Boiled Eggs Instead of Deviled Eggs. Skip out on the mayonnaise without missing the protein and bring hard boiled eggs to your picnic as a healthy snack.
10. Sushi Instead of Sandwiches. Sick of sammies? Switch it up and bring sushi on your picnic. Go for veggie rolls or healthy versions with tuna or salmon, and choose brown rice or quinoa for added benefit. You’ll stay full AND feel great.
Which healthy foods do you bring to a picnic? Spill with us on Twitter @BritandCo!
(Photos via Getty)
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:
You X Ventures for Unsplash
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.
Kobu Agency for Unsplash
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