Tag Archives: To Do List

Social Media

Do You Need a Social Media Manager?

Do You Need a Social Media Manager?

If you are a small business owner,the answer is most likely …YES!!!

Let me present some reasons why …

People start their own business for a variety of reasons. They want to follow their dreams. They want to work in a field they are passionate about. They want to make a difference in the world. For many (me included), they want to be in charge of their own schedule … not be told what/when/where or how to do their work. They want to be charge of their own time, and since they will be the “Boss”, they would hopefully have more “free time”.   Free time … what is that?

As a busy entrepreneur, you wear numerous “hats” on any given day. You are the head of the Marketing Department, the Accounting Department, HR, Sales … you get the drift, you are the one in charge of everything. Every business decision lands on your shoulders.

What they didn’t realize is how time consuming the “running” of the business would be. They want to spend their time doing the work they love. Sadly, many get bogged down by having to handle the administrative side of running a business.

That is where having a virtual assistant comes into play. Having a VA handle certain tasks frees up your time to concentrate on doing the things your love about running your business. Tasks that you are the best person to handle … things that grow your business and make money. One of the best business decisions you can make is to delegate / outsource certain tasks to a virtual assistant.

Well-informed small business owners know the importance of having an online presence in today’s high-tech, 24/7 world. Social Media Marketing is necessary for all types of business, large and small. The difference is the large corporations have a Marketing Department. The small business – not so much. Unfortunately for the small business owner, social media management is one of those (very) time consuming tasks. On the up side, social media management is a task that many small business owners delegate to their VA. Your VA will work with you to put together a workable strategy and schedule for posting on your various social media platforms. You will decide what content will be posted to each platform, as well as, the timing and the frequency. After you and your virtual assistant have come up with the best social media strategy for your business, you can then hand that task off to your VA, knowing your SMM is in good and capable hands.

Delegating the task of social media management (or a multitude of other tasks) to a trusted VA will free up some time that you can then use to tackle the other tasks on your to-do list ?

           Remember, “help” is just a phone call (or text, or email) away ?

 

Mothers Day Special

A Tracy Helps You Gift Certificate is a Great Mother’s Day Gift

Give a Tracy Helps You Gift Certificate to Your Mom This Mother’s Day

It’s May in Chicagoland, to me, that means lilacs (my fav) ~ May also means Mother’s Day to us Americans.

On Mother’s Day, we honor our mothers with gifts and cards. Flowers seem to be a particularly popular gift.  Many families treat Mom like a queen on Mother’s Day … treating her to breakfast in bed and a day of relaxation by taking over her usual household duties for the day. Many families go out to share a meal together.

Speaking as a mother, and I’m pretty sure I speak for most (if not all) mothers, when I say one of the most wonderful gifts to receive is the gift of time spent with my family. Just spending time together, reminiscing and making new memories together is the best way to spend the day ❤

Everyone needs some free time / me time, especially Mothers. Sometimes, Moms can feel a little guilty about taking some time for themselves in their busy life. There is always so much to get done. While I am taking care of her To-Do List, she can be relaxing without worrying about things not getting done.

While you are making your Mother’s Day plans and choosing the perfect gift for her ~ remember that your Mom deserves to be pampered & treated far more often than just on the holidays. While you are with her this weekend, helping her out with some of those chores around her house, give her a Tracy Helps You gift certificate. It’s like giving her the gift of free time.

This week, in honor of Mother’s Day, I’m offering a special rate for Gift Certificates ~ 3 hour for $50 … contact me 🙂

 

Tracy Helps You Saves You Time

The Most Wonderful (aka Busiest) Time of the Year

The Holiday season is upon us, and it’s the most wonderful time of the year. There are so many fun things to do, like spending time with family & friends … traveling … going to parties … shopping … wrapping … not to mention, celebrating the actual Holiday.

All these things are wonderful, but can also be stressful. Adding these fun activities to our already busy schedules can sometimes feel overwhelming. You are only one person, and you only have so much time. It’s the perfect time to have a Personal Assistant !! Continue reading

An assistant can be a real lifesaver.

Having an Assistant Can Be a Real Lifesaver

An assistant can seem like a lifesaver because they can save you valuable time. Everyone is busy, their calendars and schedules are full of appointments, events and occasions.

We all get 24 hours in a day. It’s a challenge deciding which activities take priority over the others. You may sometimes wonder “how in the world will I get everything accomplished”? Continue reading

Handmade Gift Ideas for the Holidays

Handmade Gifts for the Holidays ~ Update

So, it is getting toward the end of November, on the very cusp of the Holidays. Back in the end of September (while it was warm & sunny ~ unlike now, when we have measurable snow in the weekend forecast), I wrote a blog post talking about making handmade holiday gifts. You can read that post here.

In that post, I laid out some goals for myself. So, I wanted to give you an update on accomplishing them. Sadly, I haven’t met all of them … yet. There, of course, is still plenty of time ~ it’s not even Thanksgiving yet. The perfectionist in me wanted everything to be done super early, but that perfectionist won’t be getting her way this year 🙁
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Errands to the DMV

Time Consuming Errands ~ Tracy Helps You Will “help” You

Recently, I heard that the State of Illinois will no longer mail out license plate renewal reminders to the thousands, upon thousands, of vehicle owners. This decision is said to save the state hundreds of thousands of dollars each year ~ and hopefully be helpful in balancing the budget.

They suggest registering on their website to receive an email reminder. That will be fine for the majority of people … but then again, not everyone owns a computer and/or smartphone or has reliable internet access. Some people don’t have an email address (or if they do, feel comfortable using / relying on it).

Personally, I’m fine with remembering when my sticker expires and replacing it before they do. That being said, I do like having the post card in hand when I go to the DMV … it has all the info the clerk needs in one handy location. We all know what a joy it is to have to get in a different line / wait again because we didn’t have all the right info 🙁

Government agencies are usually great places to people watch … you’re probably going to be there awhile, and you’ve already taken time off work (thanks to their “convenient” business hours). It’s not how I envision using my vacation time 🙂

As a personal assistant, I run errands for people all the time. I’ll pick up your keys and cash from you at work, take your car for its emission test and get your new license plate sticker the same day … I can even return your library books & pick up the dry cleaning, then return your car.

Think of all the things on your To-Do List that can be accomplished … even while you are at work. Call Tracy Helps You … today 🙂

camping

My Top 10 Best Camping Tips & Hacks

I love camping, but if you know me at all, you know that I love to have a plan. Even if things don’t always go as planned, you can go on to Plan B 🙂

Here are some tidbits of wisdom (no particular order) that have served me well …

#1  Plan all your meals and snacks (I suggest lots of snacks) ahead of time – then use your menu plan to create your shopping & packing lists

#2  Create a separate plastic storage bin (with tight fitting lid) to store camp essentials – one for your “camp kitchen” aka, pots & pans, dishes, utensils, dish towels, etc. – one for your “camp gear” aka, tools, flashlights, rope, fire starters, bug spray, etc. – one for your “camp pantry” aka, to store all your non refrigerated, dry food items.

#3  Have 3 separate coolers – one for meats (freeze ahead of time and put in zip lock bags (to catch blood from the meat so it doesn’t mix in with the water from melting ice)) – one for beverages (I keep these separate because the lid is opened so often). I also fill a gallon zip lock with clean ice for my glass each time we get more bags of ice. – one to serve as the “frig” … for your fruits & veges, condiments, butter, eggs, etc. I freeze gallon jugs of water before hand to keep things cold and then use the melted water to make lemonade.

#4  Try to choose a shady campsite – it is cooler during the day and you can always find a sunny place to hang out if you want heat & fun in the sun.

#5  Get inexpensive solar garden path lights from the Dollar store – place them around your site so you can see where you are going a night … darkness fall very quickly. These generally work even if they don’t get direct sunlight during the day, maybe not as bright, but enough to light your path.

#6  Use aluminum foil and aluminum pans – the grates over the fire pit are usually pretty dirty and gross, so I use foil grill pans to cook my meats – plus easy clean up 🙂

#7  Have two matching (size/shape, so they can stack) laundry baskets – pack your clothes in one with the empty underneath. Each night as you change clothes, put the dirty clothes in the bottom basket and stack the clean clothes on top of it.

#8  Have small mesh bags for carry bath & hygiene essentials to the shower house – make one for males & one for females, or one for each person. I also set up a hand washing station at the campsite for quick clean ups. I put a bar of soap in an old knee high nylon stocking and hang it with a towel near the water / dish washing area.

#9  Always take your trash to the dump station every night before going to sleep – you do not want animals prowling around your campsite because they smell your meal leftovers! I also fill all our water containers at this time too – I need fresh water for my morning coffee 🙂

#10  Always have a well stocked first aid kit with a basic first aid manual. I use a jumbo vitamin/pill day of the week type container and re-labeled them for a supply of Advil / Benadryl / Pepto-Bismol / etc.

Do you have any tips or tricks or ideas about camping that you could share with us? Leave a comment … I’d love to hear them. We can all learn from each other !

Camping - Nap Time

There’s nothing like a relaxing afternoon nap while you are camping.

Happy Camping 🙂

Happy Memorial Day ~ Summer is Here

Memorial Day Weekend Is the Unofficial Start of Summer

Memorial Day Weekend is upon us, and with it comes different meanings.

One being observing the actual holiday …

Memorial Day is observed on the last Monday of May. It was formerly known as Decoration Day and commemorates all men and women, who have died in military service for the United States. Many people visit cemeteries and memorials on Memorial Day and it is traditionally seen as the start of the summer season. (from timeanddate.com)

Another being the beginning of summertime activities …

The school term is drawing to a close, the weather is getting warmer, it stays light longer in the evenings. Everyone wants to spend more time outdoors after being cooped up over the long Chicago winter.

Signs of summer are popping up all over:

  • The trees have leaves, lawns are green, flowers are blooming and vegetable gardens are being planted.
  • Burgers and brats are sizzling on freshly scrubbed grills 🙂
  • Beaches & pools are opening, people are hiking & biking ~ they’re camping & fishing.
  • Vacations and long weekend getaways are being planned.

It seems like a large part of summer is about relaxing & enjoying fun, leisurely activities. Of course, in today’s busy 24/7 world it’s not always easy to find free-time to rest and relax. That’s where Tracy Helps You comes in … having a personal assistant take care of some of your to-do list tasks frees up your time to do what you want to do, as well as, taking care of the things you have to do.

Call us to see how we can help you !

Christmas Countdown has begun

The Christmas Season Is Upon Us … Already !!

It’s Friday, December 5th … only 20 days til Christmas …Let the countdown begin!

Christmas celebrates the birth of Christ … Peace on Earth & Goodwill to Men. However, in the 24/7 world we live in, sometimes the preparations for Christmas can be anything but peaceful … it can be downright hectic.

Everyone’s to-do list gets longer during the holidays. All the festivities are great fun, but they also add more to our already busy schedules. Our December to-do list has additional items like sending out holiday cards, decorating & baking, shopping & wrapping, not to mention holiday parties & get- togethers.

Tracy Helps You is here to, well, help you 🙂 We can take care of some of your to-do list items. We can do some of the more routine stuff on your list, or we will Christmas shop and wrap your gifts for you. We can get your Christmas cards written & mailed out for you. We will even go to a party for you, oh wait … you probably want to take of party attendance yourself (we understand, lol).

Hiring Tracy Helps You will free up your time to do the most important things … spending time & making memories with the people you love, your family and friends!

Some time to relax and peace of mind is just a phone call away 🙂

Thankful for electricity

Tracy Helps You’s Thankful Thoughts for Today ~ 11/21/14

November 21, 2014 ~ Today I am thankful for electricity. I confess … I totally take it for granted. It’s just there, at the press of a button or flip of a switch – until it’s not. The power outages that I typically have usually only last hours … which is plenty long enough for me to realize how much I depend on it being there for me when I need it.
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