So, What is “Gal-Entines” And Why Should It Be Celebrated?!

Featured Image – Bing

Let me share what Gal-Entines is ALLLLLLLL about take it away Leslie!

Amy Poehler – Parks and Recreation

Thank you my Gal pal, Leslie. I’ll take it over from here.

Yes, there is such a thing as Gal-Entines! WHICH is to be celebrated today! So happy Gal-Entines to ALL of my ladies out there. As you can see per Leslie (Amy Poehler), it’s a celebration with your gal pals whether you’re married or NOT! Now I know V-Day is officially tomorrow and it’s a day where all the single ladies are either celebrating themselves or a little pa-turd that they’re not getting the roses and the chocolates. I get it, I used to be that way too but hey, why not celebrate ourselves right? After all we deserve it, whether you’re boo’d up or NOT!

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I don’t know about you but for the past 4 or 5 years, I’ve always treated “V-Day” like any other day. However, to celebrate the occasion, I’d always go and grab my favorite dish from the Olive Garden, get me a piece of cake from my other favorite place (Confection Connection) and go home to watch a good movie. And there you’d have it, Valentine’s Day was over…

This year, I wanted to do something a little different. After talking to other single gals, I realized that I wasn’t the only one that celebrated this way. There were a plethora of “single” ladies who weren’t boo’d up just like me. So why should I have to stay in the house? My sentiments, EXACTLY!.

I’m unsure how it’s all going to go down, but I’ve planned an event for our singles ministry this year all themed around the “Gals” – there will be arts and crafts, games, food, spoken word and hopefully a lot of laughs and a lot of good times. So, we’ll see how it pans out. I am asking for a small fee for this event (i.e $7) but you’d pay more than that eating out! The event is tomorrow although I know the official “Gal-Entines” day is supposed to happen the day before V-Day I just couldn’t let a Friday go to waste.

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As women, we need to celebrate each other, even if you do have a boo. Gal-Entines is all about celebration and good times, something that women don’t do enough of, especially in regards to one another. I don’t know what your plans are for this Gal-Entines day or even tomorrow, but whatever you do, make sure you show the special “Gals” around you, some love and appreciation!

Plan a party, an outing or go to the movies….they have this new movie entitled “The Photograph” starring Issa Rae (Insecure) and Lakeith Stanfield (Get Out) that looks amazing and it comes out tomorrow on Valentine’s Day! (Can someone say, GIRLS TRIP!!) Anywho, no matter what you decide, make sure you get out with your best gal pals either today or sometime during the weekend to check that out or just have a really good time. Andddd It’s not too late to plan…

Listen, us gals just want to have FUN and why not do it together!! – As that’s what “Gal-Entines” is truly ALL about!

Marietta Sangai Sirleaf, better known as Retta – Parks and Recreation

Is Your Business Set Up To Receive Money, Honey?

Featured Photo by: Pixabay from Pexels

Last summer, God blessed me to become a solopreneur and while it was liberating to finally get my business off the ground. The blazing trails to making my first 6 figures (Yes, I’m a big dreamer!) have been filled with rocks, turbulence, and strong winds to say the least. Being a business owner is hard work, and that’s saying it lightly. There are a lot of things that you have to do to get your business UP off the ground and running. Now, I have to be honest, you’re not going to have every “i” dotted and every “t” crossed when you open up for business. Most things you’ll learn as you go – but the basics should already be set in stone.

And one of those “basic” things is…….drumroll, please……taking payments! Yessss, now that you’re open for business this is one of the “main” things on your to-do-list that you should have figured out. However, you’ll be surprised that most businesses “DON’T!!” I know, I see your shocked face and trust me – I’m quite a bit shocked myself!

Things we’re not taking out time to implement today, Is Business Lost Tomorrow!

Roshonda N. Blackmon

So, you might ask – Well, what sort of payment system should be set up? I mean, taking cash is good enough, right? And while I’m so inclined to say yes, I have to give you a hard nod in the NO direction. With technology being as BOOMING as it is, I would suggest that every business owner (whether you’re brick and mortar or doing it from the house) you need more than ONE payment system set up to get your hard-earned dough.

After all – you put in the work to get your baby up and running and the last thing you want or need, is to lose money in the process. As Sweet Brown states:

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And you’re right Sweet, nobody has time for that, not even you Business Parent!! So, I’m going to give you 3 suggested payment options that you should have, just in case your ideal client – Doesn’t have CASH on hand.

#1 PAYPAL

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PayPal – Available at the Playstore of Apple store

I absolutely love PayPal and had it set-up for my business before it even got off the ground. PayPal allows you to send invoices to your clients and you can also set up recurring invoices for bigger jobs. Let’s say a project of yours cost $500 and the client doesn’t have all the money at once ( I would suggest always getting a down payment on anything) you can set up your invoices to be sent to them at certain times.

Such as the 1st, 15th or the 30th of the month – this way you don’t have to get into your computer every time and send it manually. PayPal can do it for you! You can also set up taxes and it let’s you create a drop-down list for your most popular services, so that way you’re not inputting the same information every time. Be aware that PayPal does charge taxes for money that comes in, so if you’re charging $15.00 for something – just know that it will take a percentage of it. If your client does pay the invoice, you can ask that they take care of the tax on their end before sending it back. You can also download PayPal for your phone as well, which makes it even simpler.

#2 SQUARE

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Square Reader – Available at the Playstore or Apple Store

Square is a card read that allows you to take credit and debit card payments on the spot. I’ve seen business parents use this system whether they had a brick and mortar or if they’re running their business out of their house. I love square as well – it came in handy when I did a vendor event last year selling my book “Billy Wolf & The Kids of Heavenly Hills Elementary”

Not everyone had cash on hand, so it was nice to be able to pull out my square reader and take a payment instead. With square (which you can download through the playstore on Android or the Apple store for iPhone) you’ll also be able to setup an invoice for your most popular or frequently purchased items. Click on it, put in the amount of the item and ask the client to swipe! and Viola, there your money is – going straight to your bank account! (Of course this depends on how you set it up) You can also send your client a receipt on the spot after they sign for their purchase. And to put a little more cherry on top, if you download the square reader app, you can sign up to get the reader for FREE!!

#3 CASH APP

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Cashapp – Available at the Playstore or Apple Store

Okay, so out of the 3. Cashapp is my all time favorite, I love easy and with cashapp, it’s just that! Once you download it on your phone and set-up your back account information, you’re ready to rock-and-roll! especially if your client has cashapp as well. You can even get your very own Visa/Debit card specifically for the app.

This card came in handy for me when my regular bank card had issues with it’s chip. It was embarrassing holding up the grocery line while I went through the dreaded “three inserts and a swipe method!” However, having the cashapp debit card made it easier because all I did was complete the info to move cash from my bank card to the cashapp card and there you go, it did it immediately (no waiting, no holds) and no headache from me. It was a WIN-WIN! & If your client has cash app, it’ll be a win-win for you as well because you’ll get your money INSTANTLY!

We can’t expect our client to always have cash and if your business doesn’t’ have more than one payment system set up. We run the risk of not only losing money but a potential client whom now will think of your business as….well….not quite put together. Even if we do the right things, we can’t help what people will say, However – we don’t want to give them any ammunition to hold “thoughts like that” against us!

The hardest part with any of the tips above is setting it all up, but let’s not be lazy business parent, as what we don’t take out time to do today, Is money lost for us tomorrow. Remember what Sweet Brown says? Now you might say, I know about ALL these things, but in business? It’s not about what you know – but what you IMPLEMENT!

I don’t know what business you may want to start in 2020 but I pray these tips get you going in the right direction towards getting your “dollars and cents” in order!

Let’s get it right today, So we can be better business parents tomorrow!

I am not sponsored and did not receive any compensation for my statements. Every opinion above is 100% my own, based solely on my own experience with using these apps.

Wanna Hang Out With Me Tonight?

Photo Credit above by rawpixel.com from Pexels

Hey, Everybody!!

Okay, so it’s evident – I miss my blogging community. Like for real, for reals…..I ain’t gonna lie about it. Do I have new content? Well, not really…lol…you would think me being gone for this little period of time that I would have at least a journal full of topics but if I can be very transparent – I DON’T! ( I know, shame on me =()

I’ve been busy for sure, working on my business baby and trying to show it as much LOVEEEE as possible and in between doing that, holding down the singles ministry, coming up with content for my new business page (more on that in a jiffy) all while holding down a 9 to 5 (and did I mention parenting?, Yeah that too!), so it’s been a little challenging trying to come up with appropriate, well I hate to say that because it sounds like I post inappropriate content on just about anything – however, you would think I’d have some new content to come back and WOW you with, but nothings been coming to me.

Anywho, maybe by the time I grace the blogging stage again, I’ll have a little somethin-somethin for ya. Speaking of busy and business – I have a new facebook business page (still working on the website) for my new business Roshonda B Creative! For those of you that may be new, I took a little break from blogging to try and build up my brand (that still sounds funny to say) but it’s a writing and creative design company in where I create flyers, social media handles, writing content, simple websites, logo’s and I even do book reviews, I do a little ghostwriting as well for businesses and so much more.

I just felt the urge of God pushing me into this venture, I mean don’t get me wrong, I’ve actually been doing this for about 15+ years as a hobby. This is just the first time in history that I’m actually going full blast with it. (Pray for Me!) So on my Facebook page I post creations that I created for clients as well as do shout-outs to businesses that I’ve used or that maybe someone else could use because we’re all helpers one to the other, right?

On this page, I also give business tips (no, I’m no master or business guru) but when I see something or learn something, I want to share it with everyone else and that’s what I’ll be doing tonight, soooooo would you like to hang out with me? I’m going to go live at 7:30 pm EST tonight to talk about a recent business experience I had and how it may or can help us become better business parents. Whether you’ve been in business 30 years or just started one this year or last week. We could all use some refreshers!

So, if you want too – I’d love to see you tonight on my FB business page! It can be sorta be like a hanging out session in where you get some good information while you’re there. I’d love to see ya and have you aboard!

The link to my FB page is here: https://www.facebook.com/roshondabcreates/ 👈

I hope to see you and if you can’t make it – no worries, you can click on the link and watch the replay. Hopefully, you’re doing very well!

I’ll see you around, Ciao My Friends!!

Can I have My Deposit Back – PLEASSSSEEEEE!!

True Story – I mean all my stories are true but you get it =)

In 2007 after living in an apartment with someone with HUGE feet living above me, Oh gosh – the noise and stomping. I can’t even begin to explain the torture, any-who I decided to move out and move into a nice little quaint house on the other side of town. I inquired about it, looked at it and had a sit down with the landlords in which were an elderly couple (names I shall not say), but they were super nice. The only thing they wanted was someone to take care of the place. While the place was really small, it had a load of character in which I loved.

Image credit: pexels

Immediately I began to see where I would put all my furniture and how I was going to make smaller areas, such as my bedroom work. The washer and dryer was going to have to be in the kitchen, a feature I didn’t particularly like, but hey. It had loads of charm and it was well maintained. It had a very nice backyard with a storage building. So any furniture I was not going to be able to fit into the space, could easily go into there.

Another feature I didn’t notice but quickly became annoyed with was the fact that the house was 15 steps from the local AIRPORT!!! Geeshhh, you know how you get so gung ho and excited over something until you forget the MAJOR details! I’m so like that. But, it had loads of charm! A three bedroom 2 full bath, who can beat that and the kitchen was even big enough for me to put in a computer desk for my office. How cool was that!

Immediately with the place, I would say about a week or two in – I seen a huge water bug making it’s way out of the kitchen. Scared the living daylights out of me…but it wasn’t the last one, it seemed like when we moved in – a whole other family moved into the furnishings as well. It was indeed water bug city! I immediately told the couple about this and they suggested I put down sticky traps along the walls and that I did…while it helped some, the kicker was a BIGGER than life one crawling across my TV screen as I watched the news one morning….I was livid! I had a 8 month old and a 1.5 year old at the time and I was so scared one of those suckers was going to bite them or get into my son’s crib or my daughters BED! Needless to say and to make a long story short, after living there for about a year and a half, I decided it was time to go.

The elderly couple that seemed so nice in the beginning turned into monsters in the end!

I cleaned the place to the best of my ability and mind you, as with moving you will have a load of stuff to throw away and I made sure it was placed neatly in front of the house so the garbage people can pick it up. I left the house in good standing. No rips or tears anywhere and it was clean….so now I awaited my 500 dollar deposit to come into the mail. A deposit that I never received.

What I did receive was a letter from the couple citing that I had lost and/or misplaced a couple things of theirs and they charged the heck out of me for it:

  • Missing curtains that were hung up to the window when they showed the place that were no longer there. Now I don’t know if these curtains were new, but they charged me store prices for all 4 curtains!
  • Missing stove and AC unit manuals that were not in the drawer when I left.
  • Burners for the stove that were not replaced
  • The trash that was left out front – Yeah, they charged me for that too.
  • The clear shower curtains that were not on the shower rods and they charged me for the rods as well.
  • Painting and a whole lot of other stuff that I can’t even name or was unaware of and they tacked on the charges majorly….like those manuals? Yeah, they called the company and found out how much it would cost to get another one and it wasn’t cheap!

By the time they got done calculating and adding things up that didn’t make a lick of sense, I not only wasn’t getting my deposit back but I had owed them money, money in which they put me on a payment plan to pay back $25.00 a month until the balance of 200.00 was paid in full, this was two hundred after the five hundred I didn’t receive. I was SOOOOOOOOOOO (excuse my language) PISSED! I called them both RAGING in fury, crying and cursing them out to the top of my lungs and then I hung the phone up in their faces.

Image Credit: Moose Photos/Pexels

Now, I’m not proud of my actions as they were elderly and I should’ve showed them respect, no matter how they acted – but I wanted my deposit back!!!!!!! Hence the move, I ended up back at my parents house and was looking forward to that money to help alleviate some irons I had in the fire – owing someone was NOT what I was expecting, BUT it happened.

Recently, I just moved and since that move. I got my full deposit back. While that issue with the elderly couple was a tragic one, it was also an eye-opening one that taught me a valuable lesson going forward and I want to share a couple of tips with you in regards to it!

FIRST THOUGH…..

Image credit: Bing/livingwordmontrose.com

Every landlord is NOT created equal. People say private owners are better but I’ve had both and each had their own set of rules and regulations. Private owners are a little more relaxed but you have to make sure – you get all your “I’s” and “T’s” crossed! and please by ALL means, if you don’t understand something – ASK QUESTIONS and read the lease thoroughly (especially the move out section), because the information that’s contained in it, can come back to haunt you later.

NOW FOR THE TIPS….

Image credit: Bing/steinbachapartments.com

1. Do a complete walk thru of the place before you move in. Make sure you look for anything that may not look right to you. Bulbs, sockets, paint, previous holes that may be in the wall, under the sinks, the toilets – I mean everything and make a list of those findings and give it to the landlord, this ensures that you are not charged with anything that was previously there prior to moving in.

2. Be careful of the pictures you hang on the wall. I know in my earlier years of renting, I was a landlords nightmare! because I absolutely love decorating. I would hang big art on the walls and some of it would be heavy, causing me to use an anchor or a heavier nail or screw. And trust me, I got dinged for my creativeness when it came down to getting back that deposit. While landlords cannot take away your deposit due to normal wear and tear of a property, such as (paint, carpet and etc – depending on how long you’re there) They can deduct if the walls are damaged from either hanging pics that are too big or major holes caused by you. Make sure you get those patched up before leaving.

3. Are there things in the apartment or house prior to you moving in? As I stated above in my own story. The landlords had put up curtains and shower curtains and rods and so forth to make the place look nice. If there is anything of the such hanging up prior to your move in, ask the landlord are those your items to keep or would they like them back. Another thing you could do is take them all down and place them in a box labeled “Decorative items prior to move in” so you can make sure those items go right back up when you leave. It sounds petty but….as you seen with my story, it was a SERIOUS thing!

Image credit: Bing/Trulia

4. It’s wise if you do a walk-through of your place prior to leaving. Check everything and determine what you need to do to either fix it or call a professional to get it prepared. And if you can, try and replace the things that may have gotten damaged prior to you staying there, especially if it was in good condition before you moved in.

5. Take a video and or pictures of the place prior to moving out and keep receipts of everything that you might have replaced or gotten fixed. This covers you should you have a slumlord that thinks he’s keeping your deposit. Speaking of which and every state is different. Make sure you check with your state to see the time-frame a landlord has to return your deposit. For NC it’s 30 days, some landlords will give it back to you sooner than that, while others will stretch it out. Knowing this information will help you know when to expect it.

Bonus Tip: Be clear in the beginning about what your deposit will be used for. Either the last month’s rent or the deposit in which you’re expected to get back, should the place be in good standing. Talk with your landlord about this as most people confuse the deposit to be the last month’s rent and unless your landlord has told you differently. Then know that it’s clearly a deposit only.

I have one last tip and that’s How to Properly decorate your new “rental” space! Sometimes we can go a little overboard. That’s next week, so stay tuned!

What has the World Done to Us? And, Why Am I Crying About It!

There’s a saying that says, “One Bad Apple, spoils it for the Rest” and the older I’m getting, I’m finding that statement to be even the more sadder by the minute, hour and day.

The World is a Cruel place.

Now I know what you may be thinking, “Okay, whose peed in my cheerios” Well, it’s not about “Who” but “What” – While the world is cruel and evil and sometimes (okay most times) unforgiving. There are still quite a few people in it, that are cool, personable and have a way of turning any blue day into a shiny one, just by their personality alone. I happen to be one of those people…

Recently, I put a couple of things online to sell. I posted these items across the yard sale boards and I tell you, I have never, ever in my life received so many responses. I mean, I couldn’t finish answering one question before I could answer another one. It became SOOO overwhelming, I began telling people that certain items had sold – just to calm down my inbox. It was then that I understood why celebrities have designated people either checking their emails or handling their social media handles. I guess you can say that experience was my 15 min of fame as I surely thought I had become one, OVERNIGHT!!

Image credit: The Edge

I was successful in getting certain things sold but after a couple of failed promised deals gone bad – I decided to go down the list to other people interested. What I noticed is that although I had stated in my post that there would be “NO DELIVERIES” I had quite a few people whom opted that I meet them in a public place, a common area where a lot of people are. I did this for one person but when it came to the other person wanting me to do the same thing, I felt a little disheartened.

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They were interested in an item I had but clearly stated that their circumstances would keep them from meeting me as they don’t do anything or go anywhere, especially to someone’s house without their spouse tagging along. They went on to mention that if they did meet me without their better half, it would have to be at a police station and because their spouse would be unavailable. They asked to be passed over for the items and that I move on to the next person.

In that moment, I felt some type of way, I felt dehumanized – if that makes sense. I suddenly thought – the world is a cruel place indeed; it’s been crippled by so much FEAR.

Thinking about the response from that individual suddenly made me cry. I admit, sometimes I can be a very emotional person, depending on the situation and especially during a good chick flick; pass the tissues because this girl will be crying. I mean, that’s just me.

Image Credit: Pexels

Now, I know my actions to that situation doesn’t make a lick of sense to you and if I can be honest, it really didn’t to me either, like “Why was I crying??” I felt sad because of ALL the negativity, scams, killings and so forth in the world, nobody can be trusted!! The first thing I thought was, “I wouldn’t hurt anyone” I remember crying one day because I’d accidently run over a dog, who came bustling out in the road from nowhere it seems.

I believe I cried too because I KNOW what type of person I am, but just because I KNOW, doesn’t mean that someone else does and you can’t be too careful these days, not even a little bit. People that speak nicely on the phone or appear nice, can easily turn out to be a terror in disguise, the only thing they need or seem to look for is an open heart to let them in and the next thing you know, your world, is turned upside-down. “Can’t people just be Good??, I mean, can we just have Good people, who want to do GOOD things and NOT bring hurt or harm to anyone? Can’t we just have GOOD PEOPLE? Are there NOT enough good people in the world??

While I was having an emotional moment of silence to myself. There was a little voice on the inside of me that said, “You Keep Being Good, no matter what, just keep being YOU!” It’s amazing how something so small can change our mindset about life and question who we really are.

I said all of that to say, Yes, while the world seems to be going to HELL in a hand-basket. There’s still some good and good people left in it. There are still organizations, companies and non-profits whom are changing the world – even if just for one person.

You can’t make people see the good in you, especially over the phone or thru a message board…lol, and please don’t try to make them. All you can do is just BE YOU. If you’re good, continue being good and don’t let anyone dull your shine, no matter how NEGATIVE the world may continue to get.

Do not be overcome by evil but overcome evil with good. Romans 12:21 (NIV)

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