Spring is in full bloom, which means flowers are in full bloom. What better way to check out the floral eye candy around town than with a picnic day-cation? Not sure what a day-cation is? Check out the solo day-cation we took in the new Toyota RAV4. If you’re going for a day outside, you might as well take along that certain special someone in your life, right? Take note, guys and gals: The tips below are a great way to woo your crush. Thanks to Toyota, we got ourselves a sweet ride for this date-cation :)
here — I’m the DIY Editor at Brit + Co, and I’ve got some great ideas for your perfect date. My handsome date picked me up in the, which was cozy and comfortable. He hadn’t driven a car with a Smart Key System or Push Button Start, so I had a good laugh when he tried to start the car. Honestly, the drive was equally as fun as the rest of the date! We went to a beautiful park, flush with trees and other spring florals.
There we set up a picnic, ate a delicious lunch, and took some selfies with fun photo booth props (we had to!). Follow along to see the projects.
I don’t know about you, but whenever someone asks me to pack a meal for lunch, camping, or a picnic, I go blank. You know that feeling? Like you’ve had so many ideas in the past, and then when it’s time to make something, you’ve got nothing. Well fear not! I’ve got a plan for you. And I can vouch for it. We had such a great date (I mean me and my belly).
The obvious place to start — get a picnic basket. We bought one that came with silverware, glasses, and a bottle opener. To add a some color in true Brit + Co fashion, we spray painted the basket.
The Perfect Picnic
Here’s a list of items to pack:
Sprinkle-dipped Marshmallow Pops
- mini sandwiches
- fruit (we chose strawberries)
- veggies (we’ve got mini bell peppers in ours)
- pink lemonade
- sprinkle-dipped marshmallow pops
- plates, cups, napkins, straws
- origami cutlery holders and silverware
- picnic blanket (and maybe a second one for your shoulders if it gets cold)
Curious about those pops? We’ve got the recipe for you. In my opinion, a good date isn’t complete without some dessert. And with dessert on a stick, you can have a cute moment feeding your S.O.
- white candy melts
- rainbow sprinkles
- lollipop sticks
1. First poke the lollipop sticks into your marshmallows.
2. Then heat up the candy melts in the microwave, stopping along the way to stir.
3. Dip the marshmallows into the melted candy and then roll them in the sprinkles.
4. Let them dry and enjoy!
These are so pretty I didn’t want to eat them. Except that I did want to eat them :)
To add a little DIY to the basket, we made these geometric origami silverware holders. Inspired by a post from Daydreamland, we added our own extra touch to these rad cases. Follow along for the folds.
Origami Cutlery Holders
- large origami paper
- washi or masking tape
1. Start with a large piece of origami paper. Fold it in half and then fold both the bottom and the top to the center line.
2. Fold the bottom right corner into the center line and the top right corner to the top fold.
3. Fold the top fold to the center line.
4. Then fold the center line over the bottom fold.
5. Flip the bottom piece up, and then fold the left side of your paper over to the right about a third of the way.
6. Flip your holder over.
7. Grab another piece of paper, and wrap around the center of the holder.
8. Secure it with tape. Alternatively, you can decorate the holder with fun strips of washi tape.
How cute are these?!
As a Brit + Co employee, I can’t help but LOVE a photo booth, especially one with unique props. Luckily, my date was into selfies and was down to get silly with me behind the camera. Like the props? Well, here you go: We’ve got them in printable form for you.
What a great day! Date! Date-cation! I got to spend some QT with my date in the RAV4, which was so relaxing to ride in as a passenger. I felt safe and sound, and I could even warm up my own seat with the Heated Front Seat feature! The picnic was romantic, the food delicious, and our activities grin-inducing. Who could ask for a better day? I’m excited for the next one :)
Photo Booth Props
Tell us about your perfect date on Twitter. Where do you like to go? What do you like to do?
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