Tag Archives: Photography

Tax Season: How I Plan to Keep Myself Organized for 2015

First, Happy Birthday to my Dad! I hope you have a fantastic day! XO.


Let’s talk about taxes. Because I’m in the middle of getting everything organized for mine, and I don’t think I’ve ever been so stressed out doing them! Ah… tax season.

I used to have it easy. A couple of W2s, some student loan interest and bank account interest, and viola, taxes were done easy peasy with TurboTax or HR Block.

But now, with a business, it’s a whole different ball game.

Tax SeasonUnsplash // Aleksi Tappura

If you didn’t know, I run a photography business. I started in 2011, and each year it’s grown (which I’m very thankful for.)  It’s my fun side business. I have a full-time job which I love, and I teach riding lessons on the weekend (which I also love.) But I love watching what started as a side hobby turn into a successful business.

Every year, I panic. I do it to myself. At the beginning of every year, I promise myself that I’m going to keep all of my receipts, track my mileage, and print out all of my monthly expenses and invoices as they come in to keep my life easier at the end of the year. And at the end of every year, I struggle to remember what I need to print out to get my taxes done.

This year has been no exception. And having the photography business really pick up this year, it’s been even more of an adventure. Two years ago. I used HR Block. It was fine. It got the job done. Nothing special. In fact, I probably should have just done it myself instead of spending the amount of money I did. Last year, I used TurboTax Professional and it went nice and smooth. This year, I just don’t want to be bothered to do my own. Especially with everything going on with TurboTax.

The good news? I meet with an accountant next week to get my taxes done, and I have almost everything I need. I just need to print a few more things out and call a couple places to get a receipt and make sure I’m not expecting anything from another place.

The bad news? I might have killed a couple of trees in the process. SO MUCH PAPER.

In an effort to keep myself more organized for my 2015 taxes, I’m already beginning to keep myself organized.

Keeping everything organized

It’s great if you print everything out, but not so great if you lose everything right away. I’m planning on buying an accordion file folder that I can label and put everything right into.

Checklists

I have lists for my lists. It’s bad, but it does help me to keep organized. I plan on keeping a checklist in the accordion file folder with all of the monthly expenses listed, as well as each month, that way I can check the month off as I go. Same with other invoices.

Printing out monthly receipts

With my photography business, there are a lot of monthly expenses that I just forget about since they get automatically paid. In an effort to remember, I set reminders on my phone to print out all of those monthly receipts around the middle of the following month. I have monthly expenses from various places ranging from the questionnaire on my website to my monthly Etsy fees for posting new products.

Printing out client invoices monthly

Another area I’m horrible about is printing out my client invoices. I do everything electronically, but still need print outs for the end of the year. So, just like the monthly receipts, I’ll be doing a check once a month for a client invoices (sessions, Etsy and client galleries), and printing everything out.

Tracking my mileage

This probably seems like a minor one, but it’s one that I can write-off and always forget to do every year. My plan this year is to track any mileage relating to photo shoots. It’s usually pretty minimal, but that way I can keep track!

Don’t panic at the end of the year

Hopefully by the following the above steps, I won’t get completely overwhelmed by my taxes at the end of the year! Panicking only makes it worse for me, but I hope that by the end of 2015, I’ll be super organized and ready to get my taxes done.

How do you keep yourself organized for tax season?

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PS – Because you guys rock, use code ITSERYNE20 at checkout in my Etsy shop to receive 20% off your entire order!

Foto Friday #19 – Winter Wonderland

Well, my friends, Friday is finally here. It’s been a busy, long week. More snow. The blog outage. The cold.

Let’s just say I’m ready for spring.

But before that happens, I’m going to enjoy the beauty of the snow. Because there is something magical about those big snowflakes falling from the sky and sticking. Unless it’s a blizzard. There isn’t anything pretty about a blizzard.

Let’s begin shall we…


Barn 4 WM

My new camera had finally arrived. I couldn’t wait to get out there and play with it. Learn everything possible about it.

I was thrilled to hear snow was in the forecast for the next day. The first snow of the year. And I was going to be at my home away from home. The barn.

And it was on to seeing what I could capture.

I’ve always enjoyed the first snow of the year. Something about the way the snowflakes fly around and cover everything in a blanket of white. And this day was no exception. And I so happy to have my camera with me to capture it.

But let me be clear. I’m over winter. Just not the beauty of it.

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Please do not reproduce without permission. If are interested in using, please e-mail me at aglimpseintoerynsworld at gmail dot com.
Copyright © 2015 eryn e photography

Foto Friday #18 – The View

“It’s Friday, Friday, Gotta get down on Friday.”

Oh sorry. You caught me singing there. But it’s FRIDAY! And Rebecca Black’s catchy, albeit terrible, Friday song always pops into my head.

It also means it’s Foto Friday! I always look forward to today. I love sharing one of my photos each week. Plus it means it’s almost the weekend.

Let’s begin shall we…


through the window Wm

One of my favorite things to do is drive around aimlessly with my camera in tow. For me, it’s relaxing. Scouting out new spots to shoot. Seeing what kind of creativity a spot can ignite.

On this particular day, it was our first day of our staycation. We didn’t have the money to travel that summer. We decided to take a week off and just kick back. Explore some of our local attractions. On our first day, we took a drive. Right up the Maine coast. We ended up in Kittery Point.

We saw a historic sign for a Fort. I wanted to see what it was all about. We found a parking spot, climbed out of the car, and treked up a dirt path. When we got to the top, we were greeted by views of the mouth of the Piscataqua River. Boats filled the left side, while the right side was quieter. It was a warm, sunny day. Clouds filled the sky.

We climbed to the top of Fort McClary, pleasantly surprised with the views we had at the top. We toured the old fort, which is now a museum, taking in the architecture and the history.

And then we stopped at one of the small windows.

And the view was breathtaking.

And I was reminded of the beauty of where I live. And how in just a short drive, I am able to find views such as this. I didn’t feel like I was in Maine anymore, but transported to another state all together.

Everyday, we may take advantage of the beauty that surrounds us. We’re used to it. It’s not new to us.

Take a moment and look at your surroundings in a new way.

Find the beauty. It’s there. I promise.

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Please do not reproduce without permission. If are interested in using, please e-mail me at aglimpseintoerynsworld at gmail dot com.
Copyright © 2015 eryn e photography

Let’s Have Coffee and Chat! {1/20/15}

I’ve been doing a lot of just general writing on here. I’ve been trying to focus the blog more as a place to be creative and less about my daily life. But, since the purpose of this is to be a glimpse into my world, I figured I should do a coffee date post on occasion.

So grab a coffee, tea, water, whatever your drink of choice is (I’m drinking black coffee as I write this) and let’s chat!

Lets Have Coffee

If we were having a coffee date I would tell you….

Wedding planning has begun. Well, it begun nearly two years ago as we tried to decide where we wanted to get married. Once we came to a decision, we had to wait until we had some extra money for traveling. Now with our trip to Las Vegas in just over 2 months (weeee!), we’ve been busy booking appointments to see venues. We’re super excited and can’t wait – both for booking our wedding, and spending a week in one of our favorite places!

I’m completely over the cold weather. I know, it’s winter. And I know last week, I wrote how it doesn’t feel like winter because we haven’t had any snow. But let me tell you. We certainly have had the cold temperatures. What have I realized? We can certainly have winter without snow. But having a bit of snow would be nicer, and make the cold a teeny bit more tolerable.

I bought a new camera (!!!). I hesitated to do it because it was a lot of money to spend, but I needed to do it for the business. I needed to upgrade to provide my clients with even better images and my Etsy shop with better images. I literally am counting down the days until it arrives. The shipping says it will arrive Thursday, January 22nd, so looks like I’ll be playing with a new camera this weekend!

I threw my back out this weekend. Again. It’s a bit better today, but still hurts to sit for too long or move a certain way. I’m more annoyed. Just as I’m getting back into an exercise routine, I hurt my back. I wasn’t even doing anything – just bending over.

And….

THE PATRIOTS ARE GOING TO THE SUPERBOWL I’m excited. You better be too (if you’re a Pats fan of course!)

Have a great Tuesday!

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Foto Friday #17

Ahh. It’s Friday again. One more week closer to spring, warmer weather and Vegas! Since I’m dreaming of warmth on this bitter day in New England, my photo for today’s Foto Friday is just what I feel like staring at today.

Let’s begin shall we…


 

San Diego Sunrise2 WM

I’m sitting on my balcony, drinking my morning coffee and enjoying a good book. I’m awake before the rest sunny San Diego.

It’s quiet. There is no traffic. Just the sound of the rolling waves, crashing on the beach.

The cool morning breeze rushes through the palm trees, causing the palms to rustle and dance. The breeze is refreshing; clear and fresh.

The sun is just starting to peek over the horizon. The sky is a beautiful shade of cotton candy pink.

The seagulls began to wake and fly through the sky.

I stop reading.

It’s too hard to read on the is perfect morning. Instead, I kick back with my coffee (and camera) and enjoy my first morning waking on the west coast, making sure to memorize everything about it.

Question: What does this photo bring to mind?

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Please do not reproduce without permission. If are interested in using, please e-mail me at aglimpseintoerynsworld at gmail dot com.
Copyright © 2015 eryn e photography

Foto Friday #16

It’s time for Foto Friday again. I missed the last couple of weeks due to the holidays, but we are back on track with it.

Today’s photo is one that I just adore.

Let’s begin shall we.


 

Sunflowers 20 WM copy

Macro photography amazes me. I love how it provides you with the ability to get up close and personal with almost any object.

I love how you can see ever tendril of the center of the sunflower.

I love how you can see the pollen all over the bumblebee’s head and body.

I love how you can see his adorable fuzziness.

I love how you are able to see the pattern in his wings.

I love how this photo reminds me of a lovely late summer day, the sun shining and the air warm.

I love how it shows the simplicity of nature at work.

What do you love about this photo?

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Please do not reproduce without permission. If are interested in using, please e-mail me at aglimpseintoerynsworld at gmail dot com.
Copyright © 2014 eryn e photography

Foto Friday #15

Foto Friday is changing. Yes, I will still be sharing some of my favorite personal images, however, instead of a series, or a theme, it will be just one photo. And what I will share is a possible story behind it, or an idea, or the emotions or feeling it might evoke in me. It will be a day where I can share something from my other passion, photography.

Let’s begin shall we.

100

Pure happiness and joy. That’s what I feel looking at this photo.

It brings me back to a day where I traveled to another continent, and a country, that I never thought I would visit. As I stepped foot on the pavement of the old seaside village of Asilah, overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, the same ocean I look out on at home, I felt alive. Cars whipped by us, camels were calling out to one another on the beach as they carried tourists around, and smells wafted through the air as the residents began to prep their evening feasts for Ramadan.

Looking down this alley reminds me of the simple beauty that we witnessed. We were surrounded by white-washed walls with brightly painted windows and doors, beautiful mosaics, and the shadows of palm trees shrouded us. The white walls kept the kasbah cool, despite the sun beating down on us. The architecture was unlike anything we ever saw, and the details embedded in the ground amazed us all.

I wanted to get lost in there. I wanted to explore every nook and cranny, and photograph every glorious detail. I wanted to sit on the stoop on the right and read a book; say hi to all those wandered by. Immerse myself in the beauty. I never wanted to leave Asilah.

But as I left that beautiful alley, to explore the next, followed by the rest of the kasbah, I reminded myself that this place would always remain. And I could one day reunite with Asilah.

I want to know – what comes to mind when you look at this photo?

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A Disappearing Act

Yes. I did it again. I had a few solid weeks of posting, and just like that, I disappeared. It wasn’t on purpose. I promise. Life just got so busy that the blog took a back seat again. So, today’s post is simply a life update.

Foot: I’ve been on crutches with non-weight bearing since September 22nd. I go back on October 20th (5 more days!) and will be handing my crutches in. Well, I’m hopeful that is what will happen. I had a solid week of straight depression from being on crutches. I felt useless, and didn’t want to leave my house. It was hard, but I kept reminding myself others have it way worse than I do. I kept telling myself that 4 weeks isn’t that long, even though it felt like an eternity. But I slowly forced myself to get out and do more. And now, here we are, just 5 days away. Keep your fingers crossed that the crutches will be gone and I’ll only be in the boot a short time longer. I’m ready to be out walking and enjoying our beautiful fall weather!

Photography: Unfortunately, the business took a bit of hit during the month of October due to the whole crutches thing. But I’m truly lucky I have such amazing clients who didn’t mind being shuffled around to other dates. Seriously, they rock. The Etsy Shop seems to be picking up. I’m getting more sales that are from different parts of the country, which is super exciting! My goal was 10 sales for the year, and I hit 14 already. I’m hoping for a few more before the year is up.

I also started an Instagram account for my photography. I figured it would be a nice way to share my portfolio, both personal and professional work, without bombarding those on my personal Instagram account. I’m not sure why I didn’t do this before. Sure, it’s a pain to switch between the two, but it’s also pretty nice to have a social media portfolio of all of my work! And in a week, I’m already over 50 followers! Win!

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The Reading Goal: This has been a bit of an…adventure. I’m right around 65 books read for the year. I have just under 3 months left. So somehow, I need to read 35 more books in the next 2 1/2 more months. And if I don’t make it this year, I will next year. (I also said this in 2012 and 2013!)

And that’s pretty much my life update. My foot, photos and reading. Oh… and if you missed it on Instagram… we bought a new couch over the long weekend. It’s pretty amazing, and I kind of never want to leave it again.

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Foto Friday #12 – Pink!

In case you didn’t know this, my favorite color is pink. I love pink. My iPhone case is pink, my MacBook case is pink, the neoprene case covering my MacBook and MacBook case is pink, my camera strap is pink. And half my wardrobe is pink. I’m definitely a girly-girl!

So it’s no surprise that when I’m taking photos, I’m drawn to anything pink. Pink flowers, pink sunsets, pink buildings…..

So, here a some of my favorite pink photos! I’m sure some are repeats, but now my favorite pink ones are all in one spot.

PINK!

Atkinson 32 WM

Cherry Blossoms WM

Spring Sunset Pink House WM Pink Lily WM

Pink Flower_

If you are interested in purchasing these photos, please visit the Etsy Shop. The pictures that have already been posted are directly linked. If you see an image above that you would like, but is not in the Etsy Shop, please select ‘Request a Custom Order’.

Please do not reproduce without permission. If are interested in using, please e-mail me at aglimpseintoerynsworld at gmail dot com.
Copyright © 2014 eryn e photography

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Setting Goals

Happy Monday my friends! ….. Just kidding. It’s Tuesday. And yes….I completely forgot it’s actually Tuesday. Long Weekend Problems.

Today, I’m talking about goals. Life goals, fitness goals, pretty much any kind of goal. I’m the type of person who sets a goal, puts her mind too it for about 3 weeks, and then quickly loses motivation because pizza sounds so much better running.

But I know having goals in place can keep one accountable. So with Labor Day behind us, and for some reason summer back in full swing, I decided that it’s time to set some good, attainable goals for the next four months (until the end of 2014).

1. Exercise more. This has been a much-discussed topic in my house for probably…. well, forever. So, it’s time to nip it in the butt and get moving. I go through such spurts with fitness. Insanity for 6 weeks last year (granted, I had to stop because I injured myself… but I could have done other things), Running for about 4 weeks, gym for about 3 weeks, etc. I’m a start and stop kind of fitness person. I want to stop being that kind of person, and start becoming the person who incorporates some sort of activity into their life everyday. It’s not about vanity anymore; it’s about my health. Especially as I close in on the big 3-0.

What am I doing to kickstart this?

For one thing, I signed up for personal training sessions with a good friend of mine who is local. She knows how much I have struggled with my weight and fitness through the years (since high school!) and really wants to help. So next Tuesday, it’s off to a local park for some serious one on one personal training. I’m excited. I’m nervous. I’m anxious. But I know she’s awesome at it, and will push me just far enough beyond my limits to make it count.

What else am I doing?

I plan on going to the gym every morning. Even with personal training twice a week in the evenings. Even if it’s for 20-30 minutes of cardio. Just to keep myself in that mindset. If I don’t go to the gym, then it’s a 2.5 mile walk at lunch. And during the beautiful fall weather, I’ll STILL go for a walk at lunch, even if I worked out in the AM. I need to keep myself moving.

2. Lose 15 pounds. Considering the amount of weight I have to lose (like nearly 60 pounds to my ultimate goal weight), this is minimal. But, it’s a smaller goal. And doesn’t seem so intimidating. I’m giving myself 4 months to lose 15 pounds. That’s 3.75 pounds per month. I can definitely do that. And I’m hoping in the next four months, it ends up being a bit more than that. But I’m focusing on 15. And whatever else happens, happens.

3. Try new things. I’ve always been the type to avoid trying new things because I was intimated. Or I was scared of what others would think of me. But now, I want to push that to the back of mind and start living. I’ve already signed up to learn to Paddleboard. Maybe I’ll consider trying Yoga. Or joining a running group.

4. Run a 5K. This one may not be attainable in the next 4 months. I’ll have to see how I’m doing fitness-wise by October/November. And how the weather is. But if I’m not ready, I’ll run one next year. This has always been on every goal list, bucket list, resolution list, etc. and I really want to focus on achieving it.

5. Blog more. I’ve really tried to be better about neglecting this blog. I have gotten better. But I want to aim to post more things of value. Not just ranting posts. Or posts where I’m trying to be funny. Legitimate posts that people want to read and are interested in what I have to say.

6. Meet my 100 books read goal. I’m SO far behind on this it’s not even funny. I’ve read 58 books this year. I have 42 more to go. That’s 10.5 books per month for the next 4 months to hit my goal. Le sigh…. it’s a good thing I have lots of good books ready and waiting on my nook! I’m currently reading The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer . LOVE.

7. Cook more. I love to cook. I’m just lazy. Which means we eat whatever is easy. Which usually ends up being take-out. Now that’s not 100 degrees out (except for this week), I plan on cooking more dinners. One, it’s healthier. And two, leftovers. Which are always the best for lunch. We also recently purchased a Ninja, and I’ve been dying to use it. And I haven’t yet. But the first thing I plan on making…. homemade hummus. YUM!

8. Frame some of my photography. And not for my own use. To have ready so that I can start proposing art shows to local places around town. I have SO.MUCH. personal work that I would love to be able to sell, but without really getting it out there, it’s not going to. Yes, I love my Etsy shop, but it’s also not doing what I had hoped. So, it’s time to frame my work and hope I can get it at some local coffee shops around town. Maybe even sell a few pieces during the holidays.

9. Stop worrying so much, and start living. Hence my goals. If you notice, they are pretty generic.

And if I don’t hit them all, oh well. I’m not fretting anymore.

I’m no longer trying to use the gym for my appearance, but rather my health (although the vanity benefits rock too!). I’m not letting my fear or intimidation get to me, and allowing myself to try the things I’ve always wanted to try. I’m not worried about what others thing about this blog, instead I’m writing for me. That’s what this has always been. I’m enjoying reading, as opposed to trying to fill a quota. Yes, I’m trying to reach 100 books, but if I don’t do it this year, I’ll try again in 2015.

Setting goals is simply to help me organize what’s next for me in the coming months. To help keep me focused and know that I’m always doing something to better myself.

What are you doing in the next four months to better yourself?

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