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Monthly Archives: October 2012

Holidays Need Equal Rights Too!

So I’m one of those people that say they don’t want Christmas crap up before Thanksgiving ends. And I don’t. Poor Thanksgiving, always overlooked and overshadowed by Black Friday deals and red and green lights. But now, oh now, Christmas is encroaching upon Halloween! What. Is. This? IT’S NOT RIGHT, I TELL YOU.

This is why no one notices time passing…because we are always looking too far ahead to the future and making it all comingle with the present. Live in the now!

Last year, there was a store that put signs in the windows saying they would not be putting anything Christmas out or up until the day after Thanksgiving. May have been Bloomingdale’s or Nordstrom’s. Not sure which. But I applauded their firm stance, and totally would have shopped there if I could afford it, just to support them.

So yes, to those that decorate in holiday themes before their times, I side-eye you. I also shoot withering glances at houses decorated thusly.

In other news, my boys are currently obsessed with The Nightmare Before Christmas, which I also love from when I was a kid. It started because Just Dance 3 had ‘This is Halloween’ on it for a dance, and then of course I had to explain where it came from, and then they just HAD to see the movie, which turned into the bluray being bought recently. Next year, Ryan wants to be Jack Skellington, and lord only knows what Brandon will want to be…I wouldn’t put Sally past that child. Enjoy this awesome lights display to that song!

(PS, just because Trans-Siberian Orchestra came on my iPod this morning and I listened to the song does not mean that I was celebrating Christmas too early. It just means that TSO is far too fantastic to be pigeon-holed into one holiday)

Scarecrow Parties Topped with Dulce de Leche

I love to bake. Mainly cupcakes. There is something about finding that perfect recipe that rises just right, and the frosting that isn’t too sweet.

I haven’t had much time to do it lately (lately being the last 6 months–oops), but for tomorrow I promised some for the neighbor’s Scarecrow party thing they throw for the block. Last year, I think I did Rolo cupcakes and churro ones, or something in that vein. So, I just spent 30 minutes trying to find a new recipe. I rarely duplicate a recipe, unless it is a real fave in my house. I like trying all new ones.

I’ve always wanted to try my hand at making my own dulce de leche (caramel-ish sauce), and that was one of the first things that the google search produced, so I decided to give it a whirl.

Tomorrow, I shall be concocting a dulce de leche cupcake with dulce de leche Swiss meringue buttercream. My husband will say it is too much work, and will remind me of such while I am creating them, but when he eats one, he’ll forget all about how much work it was (for me, mind you…he doesn’t help).

I love baking because it is a perfectly measured process, one which can give a great result if you do it right (I rarely don’t–but there was that one time…). It makes me feel good to have someone try what I made and them call me an asshole because they then want more and are on a diet. I think the first time this particular neighbor tried one of my cupcakes (lemon with raspberry frosting), his exact word was ‘Bitch’ across the fence, as he stuffed his face full of more cake.

Ah, appreciation.

More Reasons to Have a Plan B

So I was just sent some info that I thought would be worth sharing. You all know that I have a home-based business, and that business will be responsible for me being able to leave my j.o.b. in the near future, a job that I have had for 8 years.

I’ve said it before, but this book explicitly states WHY you should consider having your own business (whether it is mine or not). I knew it was a benefit to have my business, tax-wise, but as I read this chapter excerpt, my eyes got wider and wider with amazement at how truly beneficial it is. Some of it underlines a previous post I made, about stop complaining about the 1%, and think like the 1% to create a better situation for yourself. (Note: this is a fairly long post…just a warning)

From Lower Your Taxes – Big Time:

“Lower Your Taxes–Big Time, 2011-2012” reveals all the secrets professional accountants use to slash tax bills by thousands. Written by Botkin, a CPA and former attorney for the IRS, this informative and engaging book explains to readers how they can shave thousands of dollars off their yearly tax bill.
From the Publisher:
A revised and updated edition of a popular guide to minimizing one’s taxes outlines strategies for such areas as home business subsidies and deductions for expenses that are not traditionally declared, in a reference that also includes tips for avoiding audits.

Chapter One
Why You Would Be Brain Dead Not to Start a Home-Based Business (If You Don’t Already Have One)

There are really two sets of tax laws in this country. One is for employees; it allows deductions for normal employee items, such as individual retirement accounts, 401(k)s (if you have one set up by your company), interest and property taxes on your home, and charity. Then there are the laws for small and home-based business people who conduct their business either full or part time. In addition to the tax deductions employees can get, small business people can deduct, with proper documentation, their house, their spouses (by hiring them), their business vacations, their cars, and food with colleagues. They can also set up a pension plan that makes any government plan seem paltry by comparison and deduct most of their “vacation” trips if they combine them with an appropriate amount of business. (See the discussion in Chapter 3.)

The example below shows how a woman named Lori, who earned a $20,000 salary, took home only $1,175 after she deducted all her work-related expenses. Yet she could have netted the entire $20,000 had she earned it in a home-based business. This is an increase of almost 18 times her take-home pay as an employee.

It illustrates why having more than one job in a family does not produce any major effect on most people’s bank accounts because of the tax laws.

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