This Simple Decor Trick Will Take Your Summer Party to New Levels
To us, the summer season means cooking tasty meals with our favorite in-season veggies and spending the longer days with friends and family. Throwing a backyard dinner party is the perfect way to do both. And while the menu may be the most important aspect of planning a summer soiree, the decor deserves just as much attention. Whether you’re planning an intimate affair or a dinner for 20, these 14 gorgeous table settings will be the only inspiration you need. P.S. Don’t forget to check out the B+C shop for all the supplies you need to make entertaining a breeze this summer.
1. Intimate Florals: With a larger dinner party, you can make a big impact with bold decor. But when you’re entertaining for a smaller crowd, too much decoration can be a bit overwhelming. For an intimate get-together, a colorful floral centerpiece is all the decor you’ll need. (via 100 Layer Cake)
2. Fresh Fruit: Even if they’re available year-round, getting to eat our favorite fruits and veggies at their peak is one of the best things about summer. Summertime is the season for berries, tomatoes, apricots and peaches, and while they’ll taste great in any recipe, they’ll look even better as a table runner. (via The Jungalow)
3. Gingham Print: You can choose a theme for your backyard party, but sticking to just one color could prove to be easier to execute. Just mix prints like a yellow gingham table runner and yellow apple-print napkins and voila! Your table will instantly have a fun, playful vibe. (via Chris Cooney)
4. Vintage Bottles: A large floral centerpiece may work on a small table, but when you have a long picnic-stye table, smaller bouquets housed in vintage brown glass bottles will ensure that all your guests get to enjoy the fragrant blooms. (via Brian Evans Photography)
5. Peach Place Card: Place cards are a great way to make your dinner feel more personalized and more organized when it comes to seating a big party. So skip the boring metal placecard holders and use a fresh peach instead. It will play double-duty by telling your guests where to sit and serving as a quick dessert. (via Justin DeMutiis Photography)
6. Simple Rustic: An outdoor dinner party is the perfect opportunity to use a rustic theme. Keep it simple with a natural color scheme, greenery and just the sunset as decoration. (via Ann Street Studio)
9. Candlelight: Candlelight shouldn’t just be relegated to romantic dinners indoors. Arranging various sizes of candles on your dinner table creates an intimate space perfect for those late-night conversations. (via Divine Day Photography)
10. Floral Table Runner: Traditional table runners in different colors and fun prints are fine, but who wants to have a table that’s just fine? A table runner made of flowers will take your setting from blah to gorgeous. (via Scarlett O’Neill)
12. Pineapple Vase: After you use the edible parts of the pineapple for a tasty dish, rethink throwing away the outside rind and repurpose it into a vase for your table’s centerpiece. (via Sugar and Cloth)
13. Summer Sunset: Nothing is better inspiration for decorating than the colors of a summer sunset. Rich plums and magenta tones will look great in the floral arrangements, on the table runner and even on the menus. (via Paula Bartosiewicz Photography)
14. Mason Jar Florals: Mason jars have quickly become one of our favorite versatile party supplies. You can serve drinks in them, use them as dessert dishes or just to hold bouquets of wildflowers. (via My Wedding Reception Ideas)
Do you have any foolproof summer party tips we didn’t list? Share them 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