Branding Our Life

Month: February 2016

A Weekend at the Ranch

We recently spent the weekend at my in-laws ranch in the Oklahoma Panhandle. It’s a fairly harsh environment, but with a stark, desolate beauty all it’s own. Years of drought took their toll on the landscape. But there is plenty of blue sky and wide open spaces.  To me, it’s a peaceful retreat from the world. It’s so different than anything I’ve ever known.

Here are a few of my favorite pictures from the weekend:

One of my favorite parts of owning my own business is that I can set my own hours. We can take time off to go visit family. Until setting out on my own, I was rarely able to take vacations. I missed a lot of holidays and family events due to the hectic retail management schedule I kept for so many years. Anyway, It’s been awesome! Looking forward to many more trips.





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Starting a Small Business in Oklahoma

sasbioIf you’re starting a small business in Oklahoma, there are a few steps you need to take. Our goal is to provide you with some of the resources to get started.

Registering your business name

What’s a business without a name? Once you’ve landed on a name you like you can go here to see if it is available. If not, you get to go back to the drawing board. If your business name is available, you can register it with the State by going here  and filling out the appropriate forms. Please note that the current fee for registering your business name is $25.00.

Determining your business structure

For liability and tax purposes this is an important step to starting your business. There are a variety of options to choose from: Sole Proprietorship, General or Limited Partnership, C Corporation, S Corporation, and Limited Liability Companies. For the Secretary of State’s guide to Business Organization, go here. For the IRS guide to Business Organization, go here.

A popular option is forming an LLC. For additional reading on this topic, go here. Please note you will need to renew your LLC yearly in Oklahoma.

Once you have chosen the appropriate legal structure for your business, you can file the necessary paperwork here.

If you feel uncertain or intimidated by the process, there are lawyers or companies such as legalzoom, that can assist you with this. If you’re forming an LLC, legalzoom can also act as your registered agent (for a fee). Why do you need a registered agent? Check this out.

Acquiring an Employer Identification Number (EIN)

Depending on the type of legal structure you’ve chosen, it may be necessary for you to require an EIN from the IRS for tax purposes. For more information regarding EIN’s or to register for one, go here.

While we’re on the topic of the IRS, you may want to check out this page concerning quarterly estimated taxes to see if they are something you’ll need to file. Some bookkeeping software such as Quckbooks for Self-Employed will track your quarterly taxes for you.

Hiring Employees

Should you decide to hire employees, there are a few things you will need to do.

Set up an account for unemployment taxes through the Oklahoma Employment Security Commission (OESC). For Employer Information and Forms go here.

Set up an income tax withholding account through the Oklahoma Tax Commission (OTC). You can go here for more information regarding OTC withholding. The OTC does offer New Business Workshops, click here for a workshop calendar.

Set up worker’s compensation. For more information visit the Compsource website.


*Please note this is for informational purposes only. This is not intended as legal counsel.