Lollipops & Laptops

The Sticky Life of a Working Mom

Legal Tip of the Month: Essentials of a Business Plan

Legal Tip of the Month: Essentials of a Business Plan - Lollipops & Laptops

Business planning optimizes success by requiring you to analyze the potential successes of and obstacles to your business goals. A business plan is typically used at the start-up of a business and to apply for loans, but it is also very useful when running a business to organize for growth and development. As the Small Business Administration notes, business plans should be a “work in progress.”

You will use your business plan when you apply for a loan at a bank or approach a potential investor. You may also circulate it to other interested parties, but you should control who sees the business plan and update the plan as needed.

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Starting a Women’s Initiative at Work

Starting a Women's Initiative at Work - Lollipops & Laptops

When I was younger, I wanted to sell my parents on the idea of buying me a new car. I created a PowerPoint presentation, complete with financial details (cost of existing car vs. the one I wanted), vehicle comparisons (safety features, gas mileage) and an analysis of what’s in it for them (lower payments due to leasing new car and a commitment to taking over car payments after one year). Much to their dismay, I successfully convinced them and got the car I wanted. This is my MO, so after spending a few years in the real estate industry, which, like the legal field, is fraught with women at the entry level and mostly devoid of them at the top, I got to work on my pitch to start a women’s initiative within our company–PowerPoint presentation and all.

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Monthly Challenge Recap: Donating with Purpose

Monthly Challenge Recap: Giving with Purpose - Lollipops & Laptops

I’ve talked about how important it is for me to give of my time, but it’s also important for our family that we give money to causes that are important to us. As the year quickly comes to a close, we took a look at what we’ve donated this year and wanted to execute on donating some more earmarked money before the new year. Accordingly, I decided that each week I’d focus on a different cause that was important, research which organizations were best for the cause, and donate. Unfortunately, October brought quite a few disasters that made looking for causes all too easy. Read on for the breakdown of where we focused our money.

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Working Mom Interview: Ria

Working Mom Interview: Ria - Lollipops & Laptops

I was fortunate to meet Ria about ten years ago through family. I had an immediate girl crush on her. She’s bright, spunky, energetic, has a heart of gold, and seems to really know her way around this whole parenting thing. In a world, and particularly in a county, where we see more and more entitlement, selfishness, and meanness, she and her husband somehow are raising the most incredible, driven, gentle, loving, and respectful children. She’s a working mom with a career in a unique industry and she has a few additional years of parenting experience over me, so I was excited to pick her brain. Here’s what she had to say:

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Getting Creative with Photo Books

Getting Creative with Photo Books - Lollipops & Laptops

I initially planned to write about how I’ve gotten away with throwing away all my kids’ crappy artwork by taking photos of them and turning them into photo books. And I have, in fact, done that. But every mom blogger out there is talking about this idea. It’s not a novel one. Instead, when I was organizing my photos and making sure they were backed up properly to the cloud, I realized I had an album’s worth of photos that were truly worthy of paying to put together into an album.

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Good Vibes from Around the Web: October

Good Vibes from Around the Web: October - Lollipops & Laptops

This month has flown by and I can’t believe the holidays are fast approaching. After taking three trips in August and September, this month was about schedules, organizing, and making plans for the upcoming new year. Check out some of the intriguing and inspiring content from around the web this month that is satisfying my inner #girlboss, my wanderlust, and hitting on that mom life.

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10 Unique Ways to Use PTO to Spend Time With Your Kids

10 Unique Ways to Use PTO to Spend Time with Kids - Lollipops & Laptops

We can’t always afford the time or the money to take a weeklong vacation with the family. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t utilize our time off. Historically, I always felt like I should just stock up on PTO if I’m not doing anything fun. But that’s a bad idea for two reasons: first, many companies, mine included, max out PTO and you stop accruing it if you don’t take it; second, the burnout struggle is real if you never take a day off. And what better way to use that time off than to spend a little quality time with the kids? Granted, it’s important to spend time taking care of yourself as well, but here are some unique ways you can use that PTO for some good old fashioned fun with your family, bank-breaking not included.

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Legal Tip of the Month: Guide to Approaching Angel Investors

Legal Tip of the Month: Guide to Approaching Angel Investors - Lollipops & Laptops

Plenty of people start businesses that aren’t right for institutional investment but require additional funding to get to the next level. Angel investors are a great resource in that scenario. An angel investor, by definition, is a person who invests his or her own money into an entrepreneurial company. The term “angel” was originally used to describe investors in Broadway shows, but has since been expanded to general business. Unlike institutional investors like venture capitalists who invest other people’s money, angel investors are generally involved in the very early stages of a company and because they invest their own personal money, a typical angel invests less than $1 million. Below are some considerations when preparing to approach angel investors.

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4 Ways to Find (or Reignite) Passion at Work

4 Ways to Find (Or Reignite) Your Passion at Work - Lollipops & Laptops

I’m an old Millenial, but I’m a Millenial nonetheless, so please spare me the eye roll when I talk about passion at work. As a rule, logic dominates my thought processes, so I never expected to find a day job that was a “dream job.” (Those expectations died with my dreams, in chronological order, of being an Olympic gymnast, an actress, and a sports broadcaster.) Still, as I’ve moved forward, backward, and sideways in my career, I haven’t been able to shake the feeling that despite my general contentment in my work these days, I’m not “feeding my soul,” as one colleague put it. Determined not to be stuck in a rut, I’ve used these tactics to find passion at work even if I’m not living the dream:

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How to Help Friends in Difficult Times

How to Help Friends in Difficult Times - Lollipops & Laptops

One of the realities of life is that bad things happen. With any luck, we can avoid these scenarios as much as possible. However, someone in your life will certainly experience unfortunate events, and it’s in these difficult times where we can shine the most as friends.

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