Done, done, done!

Did you hear my whooping and hollering? My taxes are done!

It’s been a hectic and harrowing few months. Spending time with relatives in the hospital and worrying about them when I’m not there took its toll.  When I did have free time, the last thing I wanted to do was taxes. I wanted to cuddle cats and watch puppy videos. And eat chocolate.

I had to knuckle down. I have a tax routine that works for me and it was time to start it.

While you read this keep in mind that it takes me about two hours to do this chore with checks and double checks to make sure I got everything. The whining time far outweighs the activity.

First I whine (I start that in January), then I clean off my desk or move things around. Mostly move things around (should the calculator be on the left side or the right side). 

This is followed by a week of nothingness. No activity on taxes, just dread. Another short whine and then I dig in. I stay with it until it’s done. I collapse and have a margarita. Or a mocha latte depending on the time of day. (Sometimes both as the completion celebration goes for hours!)

It’s become simpler in retirement because there is no income but there are still things happening that require an effort. Here is a post from 2013 and nothing has changed in 6 years!

I hate taxes. Could the government have made it any more complicated? I think not. Who thought up all those “but ifs” anyway? It’s the same people who can’t compromise on…oh…anything!

I do our taxes myself. I am smart enough and too cheap to spend a bunch of money on an accountant. For the most part, it’s not hard.

I use an on-line service. They add better than I do. They nudge me for stuff I forget. Every year they change the format. You have to find menus that are hidden in mysterious places. They also put you through a lot of screens to make sure you don’t qualify for some obscure credit. Trust me, I don’t qualify for anything that lessens my taxes.

They want stupid information that isn’t on the forms sent by the various banks. They kept insisting on a state code (what is that anyway) for one of the entries. There wasn’t any. They weren’t happy and my return is noted that it has an error. That’s too bad!

We don’t have tons of money. That’s what makes it more frustrating. We rolled over some accounts, sold some funds and bought others. None of it amounts to wealth. (I am still working on winning the lottery. That is our long-term financial plan.)

It took two days to navigate that damn on-line site. I am cranky! I’m considering a second Starbucks run to settle me down. It’s that or a Valium IV drip!

When I was considering careers, numbers did not interest me. I don’t like day-to-day number crunching. My algebra teacher thought I could be a nuclear scientist if only I could add. (Details, details…)

My brother got all those wonderful number genes. I got the genes that make me run in circles and yell at people. Those came from my mother. She was a sweetheart with an iron will!

I’m off to Starbucks to find Happy Kate!

 

79 thoughts on “Done, done, done!

  1. When I started reading, I thought the tax thing would go on for a lot longer than a few weeks (if I understood correctly). From the sounds of it, you are a model taxpayer – even with the whining part! In my case, the returns are also due sometime around April (I think) but I just blow through that deadline. Then a reminder with a new deadline comes some time in October or November and that is when I sit down and do it. My husband has a five year grace period. Typically on the second or very last day of the year, he sends in his forms online. So the last time – December 31st, 2018 – he finally submitted his 2013 returns. Now THAT is procrastination for you!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Congrats and cheers! Now you can enjoy life again (gads I hate to do taxes…and write the check – still we have to write a check – we work not to live in luxury, but to pay for our way ourselves ( and not be a burden…oyez- to hear parent’s words coming out of your mouth!)
    Happy weekend!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Congratulations, Kate. Last year, I was trained by the United Way as a tax preparer volunteer to do taxes for low income people. I had never even done our taxes before. I eventually became comfortable and this year did ours with no help at all! Whew!

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  4. I can work with numbers, but there’s never a comfort there. I check and double check everything and still feel like I’ve missed something. Congratulations on completing your taxes! That’s a hug accomplishment. I start whining around January, too, and when they’re finally done, i feel such relief. Considering all you had going on with your family this year, you have done great to get it done before the deadline! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m very happy to have completed it. I sat on my shoulders for a long time. I just love the on-line programs. They aren’t cheap (I never qualify for the free one) but I can do it at my convenience and my timing (except for the deadline!).

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I never wanted a career crunching numbers either – heck, I think I must have been absent the day we learned the top line of numbers and symbols on the old non-correcting typewriter in ninth grade because I still have to look at those keys when I type and I’ve been typing for 50 years. (Oops – did I just admit that? No wonder my fingerprints are non-existent and I have issues every time I have to renew my green card.)

    Liked by 1 person

  6. That’s marvelous that you got your taxes done. I have one more elusive tax statement to track down, and we are waiting on a form to be emailed from an accountant in another state. I endorse all your whiny statements and embrace them as my own.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. And all of that (plus the complications of doing taxes on our business, which is a corporation,) make me quite happy to pay my accountant to do both the business and the personal taxes!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Because of the home based business, we have our taxes done by H & R. Initial computation showed us owing $16,000! With some adjustments, we got a small refund. I’m not sure I could have done that by myself!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. that’s worth two big sweet cups from starbucks ;O) I once did it for my father and it looked so fantabulous that he paid me over-generously… sadly the tax office saw my fabulous work different and my dad hat a lot of things to explain and to rectify ( but no refund of my reward, I gave it immediately to a poor shoe store owner in need)

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Enjoy your Starbucks Kate. Although we knew it was tofficially the first day of Spring today, we were informed that it is also Happy Day! Great plan.
    Hubby and I don’t pay tax as our income is way below the tax threshold here. However, I used to do them when Hubs was self employed (whether he paid tax or not we still had to present books), and also for Partner. I more than halved the latter’s accountant’s bill by doing the initial paperwork and presenting the books and figures.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Being from Canada, you are welcome to come but we pay taxes too. We do them ourselves as well. Takes about an hour and we efile. Refund is deposited in about a week.

    I told my hubby we are lucky that we don’t have any money or investments or property. It makes tax time easier!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Being old school and perhaps lazy, I still take our taxes to an accountant. Have used this same man since 1985. Good guy. But come to find out he has cancer. He is having chemo, and still working ,but is slow. So his assistant tells us they might have to file an extension for us. Ours is so not complicated so I hope that doesn’t happen. Perhaps I will suck it up and do it myself next year.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Kudos to you! I practically break out in hives whenever I’ve tried to do my taxes on my own. Then I {loudly} complain about the shake down at the tax preparer’s office. This year I’m going to a no cost clinic but can’t get in for about 10 days…awk. I figured with the new tax rules/deductions I’d need help though it seems strange when you have no money that it turns out to be so complicated and frustrating. I hope with the new rates in effect you didn’t have to pay more-too many peeps are getting a little surprise this year I’m suspect-my prepare from last year gave me advanced warning. Cheers! 🍹

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Every year at this time I’m in deep denial about taxes. Thankfully I have someone to do our forms for us, but it’s still a chore I hate to get the necessary papers together. Congratulations on facing the beast and getting it done – and early too!!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Ugh! I put everything together last week and sent it to the tax lady. Twice I’ve thought of something I forgot and had to get that to her! Now I’m playing the waiting game…Fearful of the end results. I keep saying I’m going to do it myself, but keep shoveling out the money to have someone else to the deed. I do Andrews with an online service, but he’s a poor college student with not much income to speak of. It looks like it may be that way for a few more years. Taxes will be the death of me!

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  16. Kate, I can SO relate to this one! I too do my own taxes except I still do them on paper. I figure that as long as I can manage I don’t want to pay someone else to do them. I go through a ritual also that involves getting out last year’s “keeper” copies (that I have made copious notes to myself upon), setting out all the current year’s tax paperwork and then getting down to it. I also grew up with a brother who is a brainiac in math and I did not inherit that gene. I feel more intimidated with trying to do the same thing online so have not graduated to that and so far, don’t plan to. It is frustrating enough to do following my “template” method! I have got into the habit of doing the taxes as soon as I have everything gathered up (here in Canada that’s the end of February) and immediately getting it into the mail to the government. The times that I have not done that have been just torture from the dread and anxiety of putting it off.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The torture, dread and anticipation are definitely worse than the work. I’ve been using an on-line service for a very long time. I’m not sure I could easily do it without reading lots of stuff. I keep a crib sheet too. Somethings are taxes and somethings aren’t (state taxes are different from federal and the rules are different) so I need to notes. Our taxes are a lot simpler than when we were working but there are still some tricky things to watch out for.

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  17. LOL! Congrats on getting them done! I am the same way about numbers, I strongly dislike them, or actually they dislike me, for they love to confuse me!
    Ha Ha about Maxine, are you going to have to slip into Canada anytime soon? 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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