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Tax Planning This Year

Big or small, no matter who you are, you must file your taxes. The deadline for filing is rapidly approaching so it’s not too early for a small business to get ready. What can you do to make this as painless as possible? Here are a few tips that can help: Recordkeeping. Keep a close track of your business expenses and enter them into your accounting system as soon as you can. The longer you wait, the more likely you are to forget. Keep in mind, this is a situation where accuracy is key. Keep business and personal expenses ...

Blended

On a recent weeknight, I was sitting at my computer, and Blue was sitting in the dining room, which he has claimed as his personal office. The table is perpetually covered with ACT study materials, a gargantuan U.S. history book, a laptop, and his various drinks and snacks. There’s an open layout in this part of the house, so I can turn my head while sitting at my desk and see him holding court about 30 feet away. Often, we find ourselves sitting in our respective workspaces at the same time doing our respective work. He might listen to ...

Family Fun

I’ve been celebrating Halloween with my kids for over a decade now, and as a result, I’ve got a few Halloween hacks for parents to share. 1. Go to the pumpkin patch early. Some might take this advice a step further and skip heading out to the over-crowded pumpkin-slash-apple-slash-pony-ride-slash-corn-maze extravaganza entirely, but not me. Those fall pumpkin photos with the kids are just too amazing to miss. But go early. Most farms are pretty empty the first few weekends in October, but not so much as ...

In Your Community

Atlantic Health System's Acne Treatment and Research Center is conducting a study of an investigational treatment for people with moderate-to-severe acne. To qualify for the study, people must: Be at least 9 years of age Have at least 20 red, irritated pimples, and at least 20 whiteheads or blackheads, and Have no more than two large, hard bumps on the face Qualified participants will receive all study medication and study-related visits at no cost, and may receive compensation for their time. Health ...

Liz on Theatre

UNION, NJ – Premiere Stages, in its quest for new, richly layered plays, is now presenting “Skeleton Crew” by Dominique Morrisseau. The playwright had her play “Follow Me to Nellie’s” work shopped at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center in Connecticut several years ago. That was followed by s fine production at the Kean University theatre. “Skeleton Crew” deals with the pared down work force at a factory which may be closing soon in the Detroit area. The plot follows four characters: ...

Main Street Musings

“This is an unorthodox request and feel free to say no,” began my creative writing teacher, Laura, in a recent email. She went on to explain that Bridges, a non-profit organization, received a grant to create a photography project on the homeless in Newark. The program gave digital cameras to people experiencing homelessness to express themselves and their world through their art. Would I be interested in interviewing a photographer about his or her experience? She had me at “unorthodox.” I loved the idea of ...

Maplewoodian by Joe Strupp

I wrote last month that those who do not pay for the Maplewood fireworks but sit and watch them anyway were akin to thieves. This brought a great mixed reaction, some agreeing with me while others claiming such a viewpoint was unfair to those who cannot afford it. Then there were some who called it racist since many of those who do not or cannot pay are people of color. One person even accused the Township of purposely keeping certain groups out of the fenced-in paid areas. Ridiculous.  I pointed out that the $16,000 cost ...

Photo of the Day

Maplewood received a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus on Saturday, Dec. 3, read more about it here. There's another chance for a Santa sighting this Saturday, Dec. 10, at Maplewood's Annual Breakfast with Santa at St. James's Gate and Village Trattoria. Tickets are available on a first come, first serve basis, and there is limited seating. Purchase tickets for the St. James’s Gate Santa breakfast at Village Wine Shop and purchase tickets for Village Trattoria Santa Breakfast at No. 165. For the full schedule of ...

Real Estate with Shannon

SOMA Real Estate Update Inventory remains low. According to the Garden State MLS (GSML)*, as of Sunday, April 9, there are 60 homes for sale in South Orange with 7 of them in attorney review. Prices range from $139,000 for a condo off of Irvington Avenue to over $1.3 million for a Tudor on North Ridgewood Road. If you are looking for a 4 bedroom home in South Orange; there are 10 homes available ranging from $335,000 to $899,000. The average days on market for properties under contract is 44 days. The current absorption rate is 3.69 ...

Risky Business: Managing Risk in the Modern World

Real Estate Agents take on a great deal of responsibility when they guide us through the process of purchasing a home; knowing the basics of property insurance to point clients in the right direction is an important part of confidently brokering a home sale. Under what circumstances should a buyer be concerned about special coverage? A Vacant Home Vacant homes are at higher risk for most causes of claims. Vacant properties are broken into more often, and what would have been a smaller claim like a pipe bursting can be catastrophic if ...

The Mommy's Review

My first and last visit to Nashville was about 15 or 16 years ago with my boyfriend (now husband), and I’ve been craving a return trip for a while, especially since I’m such a big fan of the Nashville TV show on ABC. Luckily, we were able to take the kids on a fun trip there recently, and we wound up flying into Nashville and turning our excursion into a mini-road trip with stops in Chattanooga and Atlanta. After landing at BNA and picking up our rental car (through Costco - always the best deal I can find), we took the 2-hour ...

investorsBank Economic Outlook

The Federal Reserve is expected to raise interest rates several times this year. Although that may slow gains in the commercial real estate sector in the Investors Bank footprint, it should not stop the improvement from continuing.  When it comes to real estate, everything is local. So let’s tour Investors Bank’s regional commercial real estate markets. Long Island: The strength of this market can been seen in its vacancy rates, which are the lowest in a decade. Demand is rising, but supply is growing modestly. That ...

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