Minute by minute

my thoughts on making the most out of all of life's minutes…


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Back to school ideas

WOW!  Hard to believe that the summer is almost over.   Soon, my blog hiatus will be coming to an end too.  I’ll be back at the beginning of September bringing you daily time-saving tips.

But in the meantime, I thought I’d revisit some previous blogs I’ve written about back to school ideas and share then with you today

 

This tip written in August of 2010 is still a great idea for taking the hassle out of  the  I don’t know what to wear blues.

https://amymunns.wordpress.com/2010/08/16/school-days-tips/

 

This tip written last year helps with back to school clothes shopping.  This experience doesn’t have to be a bad one.

https://amymunns.wordpress.com/2011/08/05/could-it-be-back-to-school-already/

 

The final tip written in 2011 helps get your calendar organized.

https://amymunns.wordpress.com/2011/08/22/back-to-school-calendar-tip/

 

Hope you and your kids have a wonderful and successful school year.

See you in a couple of weeks!

~Amy

 

 


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Freedom Friday! Name my eBook

Hi Friends and Happy Friday!

I’m not really starting another themed day – although I do hope you like them.  But I would like to enlist your help today  – hey – let’s make it a contest.

A few months ago I completed my first eBook – it is a collection of time-saving tips to help make the daily dinner time rush less hectic and more doable.  I named this book “What’s for Dinner” – which I never really loved.  I have it listed on Amazon for Kindle  but I fear it isn’t getting any recognition because the title probably makes it seem more like a cookbook than a tip book.

So – will you help me name my eBook.

For a limited time you can view the book here –  – – –What’s for dinner

Please take a look at it, read through and send me your thoughts.  I’d love any comments but what I’m really looking for is a new title.

Let’s keep this contest running for one week.  Next Friday I will announce the new title.  The winner will receive a $25 Amazon Gift Card!!!

I can’t wait to see what ideas you have.

Thanks for your help!

~Amy


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Tips on Tuesdays – Themes

If you asked me ten years ago I would say I didn’t believe in color coding and if you asked me a couple of years ago, I would tell you that I thought themes were silly.

But as I get older, my family gets busier, my job(s) become more demanding I find these simple tools are really quite helpful.

I have written many times about color coding my calendar and assigning each project or person a different color.  As I continue to do this, I now notice when I forget to assign a specific event or appointment without its color – it looks so out-of-place, that I immediately will categorize it.  And while I used to think that it looked like a confetti mess on my screen – I know could not function without my color coding system.

I recently texted my BFF from high school something.  She and I also roomed together our first semester in college and all throughout high school she never knew something about me that she only discovered once we moved in together.  She found it so odd that I color sorted my closet – from my hanging clothes to my shoes – everything had a place and they all fit in a rainbow color scheme.  I reminded her of this via text the other day when I was cleaning out my closet and she still thinks I’m a “freak” (her words)  for organizing my closet this way.

Recently, as I’ve been talking with friends, I’ve discovered and now I have worked into my own systems – THEMES!  I hope you’ve noticed my themes for my blog that I implemented this year.  So far – it is keeping me much more focused on my weekly writings and creating a deadline for me to get something out there for each assigned day.

I’m starting to see the value in these themes, where I had once poo poo’d them.

Here are a few points as to why I think Themes are helpful:

  • They take the thinking out of a situation. – for example – if you have Taco Tuesdays as part of your dinner theme for the week – your answer for Tuesday’s dinner isn’t to the question “What should I make for dinner” – it is “What sort of taco should I make”.
  • It opens room for more creativity.  Let’s go back to Taco Tuesdays – since you are confined to the restrictions of just Tacos on Tuesdays – you can get really creative with those tacos.
  • It helps others in your family, in your work groups, etc keep track of what is expected of each day.  Try wavering from Taco Tuesdays from a six and nine year old.
  • It builds stronger teams and forms a sense of connection.  Keeping everyone engaged with the theme helps builds the enthusiasm and builds a culture that is unique to just your situation.

I can see using themes in every area – business, family, household, personal, etc.

And I can see using themes for more than just daily – but weekly, monthly, quarterly or annually.

Here are a few thoughts on some themes:

  • For menu planning – just like I used in the example above – Meatless Mondays, Taco Tuesdays, Sandwich night Thursdays
  • In business to keep you on track of those “other tasks” that need to be done in addition to the actual business tasks– Marketing Monday, Communication Tuesdays, Billing on Thursdays
  •  Workouts – giving yourself a theme keeps your workouts fresh and can provide more motivation – Treadmill Tuesday, Free Weights Friday and Stretching Saturdays.
  • Keeping the house clean – by tackling one task a day, you don’t have to spend on giant chunk of time cleaning, instead it is broken up into smaller jobs.  Mopping Mondays, Toilets Tuesdays, Vacuum Vednesdays (see what I did there – clever huh?)

Pick a theme for a week or month that goes along with Holidays or the seasons.  Spring cleaning in March, First week Communications, etc.

I really think the possibilities are endless and can be created to your specific needs and goals.  I can see this being a very motivational tool, one that keeps you on track of what to do for each day, week or month.

I do tend to get caught up with having to have the alliteration to make the theme work for each day or month.  But that is just a hurdle that needs to be jumped or with the help of a thesaurus – some creative can be conjured up.

I’d love to help you come up with some themes for your situations – shoot me a comment and let’s see what we can come up with together.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

~Amy

 


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Not Me Monday – 10 Time Saving Tips

Happy Monday Everyone!

Even though this edition for Not Me Monday is titled 10 Timesaving Tips for the New Year  – I don’t think they only need to put into practice at the New Year.

I like this list – it is simple and concise and the points the author makes sense.

Tell me – which is your favorite?  Is there one you can work on starting today that will start making a difference in your routine?  Which one?

I think mine is #6 – Protect your time.

 

Hope you had a great day!

~Amy


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Thursday’s Take – why do you waste it?

My hairdresser said something to me one day that has stuck with me since the day she said it.  While I didn’t really apply the thought to her statement at the time, I have started applying it to my life these days and it is something to think about.

As part of my appointment, J, my hairdresser, would always ask “do you want to try any of the products out front?”

Not one to really go for the “up-sale” , I usually would graciously decline and say something like “I’m good, thanks.”   Usually this was all and I appreciated the fact that J. didn’t push it any harder.

But one day she asked me – “Amy, why do you spend so much money on getting your hair colored and styled and then wash it all away with cheap shampoos and conditioners?”

Well – truth be known, because I was spending so much on getting my hair done, I was trying to cut costs by not buying the overly expensive products for sale there.

Now, this isn’t about whether or not you should buy those professional hair products, that is a matter of personal choice (one of which I still use my beloved Pantene products).

This is about “why would you go through all this trouble only to throw it all away.”

As I mentioned, I’ve been mulling over her words and have been applying them to different facets in my life – and it seems to be changing my line of thinking a little bit.  Here are a couple of expamples:

  • If you are going to get up at 5:30am and run around the block four times and then come home and do thirty minutes of yoga, why would you waste that by having a fast food lunch and candy bar snack?
  • If you are going to spend four hours cleaning your house, which includes scrubbing the floors on your hands and knees, why do you let the dogs in from the rain without wiping them down first.
  • If you spend hours setting up your budget and are diligent about saving money and paying off bills, why do you leave all the lights on or run the dishwasher half full.

Give it a try!  Can you see how it might change you way of thinking.

Your time and money are valuable – don’t just throw them away!

Send me your thoughts – – on this or any blog I’ve written.  I love hearing back from everyone and love to get comments.

Happy Thursday!   Amy


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Word Up Wednesdays – Sole Proprietorship v. Corporation

Rock On!  You are a small business owner!  Now let me ask you a question – what type of business do you have?

I don’t mean – what does your business do, or what product do you sell or what service do you  offer.

I am asking –

Are you a Sole Proprietor or a Corporation? 

There are some very distinct differences between how your business is filed with the US Treasury and the Secretary of State.  The biggest differences are those between a Sole Proprietorship and a Corporation.

The important thing to remember  – A Corporation is a separate entity.  This means it files taxes separately, has shareholders and will protect your personal assets in most cases.

It is my philosophy that any business regardless of size or age can be a corporation.  But whether or not your business should become a corporation should be decided based on recommendations from your CPA and your attorney.

Here are a couple of things to consider:

Corporations:

  • Shareholders are not responsible for corporate debt.
  • Corporations can offer self-employment tax savings.
  • Corporations offer protection of personal assets.
  • There is more of a cost associated with setting up a Corp and you will be required to do certain things annually such as conduct a Shareholder’s meeting.

Sole-Proprietor (SP)

  • SP’s offer easier start-up abilities and simple tax filing.
  • An SP is a bit easier to operate and make changes instead of dealing with shareholders.

What sort of businesses should be incorporated?   Like I said above, this should be based on the recommendations of your CPA and attorney.  But here are a couple of examples to consider:

  • If you own a small hair salon I would highly recommend becoming incorporated.  Imagine if someone tripped and fell in your parking lot of your building.   Someone could easily sue for medical expenses, lost wages, etc.  If you are not incorporated – they can draw money from your personal assets – meaning your home, savings and retirement funds.  By setting up the business as a corporation – they will only be able to go after the business assets.
  • Maybe you offer house cleaning services in your client homes.  What if you accidentally clean a stain in the carpet with a cleaner that ruins not only the carpet but also the sub-flooring.  Most likely your insurance will cover this damage, but if you aren’t insured or are under-insured, the client could come after your personal assets to pay for the damages if you are not incorporated.
  • Assuming you are paying yourself a salary (which you should be as a small business owner) one way to help save costs is by being incorporated.  Your CPA can tell you which sort of Corporation would be best for your situation.

It is very easy to just put off the decision of whether or not to become incorporated, maybe because you don’t really understand this whole thing.  Or maybe because you believe you will always be diligent and not have any accidents.

The latter line of thinking – while optimistic, is very dangerous.  Accidents happen and sometimes they happen despite our best intentions.

If you are unsure or you really don’t understand the whole Corporation -v- Sole Proprietor – – a call into your CPA or attorney will help answer this question.  Fifteen minutes on the phone with either of them can save you tons of time and money in the long run.

I’m available to bounce ideas around if you are uncertain of what sort of business entity you should be.  I can offer examples of potential situations which might make your decision easier to make.  Shoot me an email and let’s talk about it (there is no charge for this service).  amy@amymunns.com

Happy Wednesday ~ amy

PS  – I realize that this is a day late – but I didn’t want to skip this week’s edition to Word Up Wednesday. Thanks


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Tips on Tuesdays – Sticky Calendars

Check out the following products and consider the many different ways you can implement them into your daily and weekly or yearly routine to help you keep on track and get things done.

Weekly Sticky Notes

I love these – use one for on your desk and stick it on your computer monitor, use one for the family and put appointments and field trip reminders on each appropriate day, use one for your team at work to announce meetings and deadlines and days off too.  I really love the idea of assigning days to each of your “to-do” tasks.  

Weekly Sticker Calendar:   

 

Same as above  – only bigger and color coded.   Assign each block to a family member for daily chores, create a menu for the week, keep track of different projects and deadlines.  I see lots of uses for this one too.

 

Yearly Planning

This is a great way to plan out the year and have it available all at one glance.  Great for families for gifts, vacations, home projects.  Great for work schedules and deadlines.  I love color coding of different sticky notes to represent each activity.  And how satisfying will it feel to rip off those sticky notes once the project is completed?

 

 

 

It’s all about the Sticky Note Love today!  Happy Tuesday!

~Amy