Posts Tagged 'tax season'

I Survived Another Tax Season!

It’s a good thing people like their Easter eggs hard-boiled or my blog would be a lonely unvisited little rest stop on the information superhighway but once again, this post reels them in 😀  Lord knows I haven’t had the time to write anything new in a while to generate any traffic.

This tax season was both one of the easiest and at the same time one of the most hectic I’ve had, all at the same time.  I knew it would be a challenge with little ones in the house again and school closings and daycare issues thrown into the mix, but this part was considerably easier than I thought it would be this time around.  Unlike when my own kids were young, I had the convenience of an emergency sitter at home (Middle Son J was gracious enough to watch the kids when he didn’t have class) during those pesky two-hour snow delays and cancellations.  My boss realized I’d need some time off here and there to tend to the kids many appointments and took the pressure off by assuring me that things would be okay and in fact, office hours were now only 9 to 5 (except of course for him–when he was usually there before 7 towards the end and even showed up at 4:30 am one day!!).  Of course, I came in early and stayed late whenever I could, but it was nice to know it was not totally expected!

Having Easter fall after tax season is a nice bonus.  Big Daddy made the observation today that this will be the first time I’ll be home with him on Good Friday.  I will actually have time to shop for the kids’ Easter goodies myself and this past Saturday, I was able to take the kids to an Easter egg hunt.

Even though I started back to work this year later than usual (Feb. 28th versus the usual Feb. 15th or so),  I just barely got my own tax return done before the deadline.  Normally I have my own and all the kids’ (and their significant others) returns done before I even go back to work.  With homework and bath times, my evenings disappeared just as fast as the 10 pounds I’d lost reappeared on my gut and ass from stopping for fast food breakfasts every morning on my way to work : (

Bonus Baby adjusted great to the extra few hours at preschool/daycare while I worked.  She was always happy to see me when I came to pick her up, but never in a huge hurry to get out of there as we always had to stop by the infant room and see the babies before she would leave.  Her teachers got to  know her a little better and appreciate her funny and huge personality as much as we do.  We were informed that even though she’s the smallest one in her class, all the other kids pretty much follow along with whatever she wants.  She’s a little charmer, that one.

Bonus Child seemed to have a little rougher time.  She only had to stay an extra hour or so at the school for their after-school care twice a week but she claimed she hated it!  She missed having me around all the time and couldn’t wait for me to quit working.  I actually didn’t spend a whole lot less time with her except for the Saturday mornings when I worked, but she must have sensed how rushed I was and in fact, I didn’t push her as hard to study her spelling words when she balked and her grades suffered a bit.  I’m still amazed and in awe of full-time two-income families (or single working parents) with young children.  There are some successful ones, and I have no idea how they do it.  Thank God I have 10 months to recuperate!!

Spring Has Sprung…Almost

I have funny stories.  I have stress-coping strategies.  In two days I’ll have time to share them.  Even better, I’ll be able to catch up with everyone.  I’ll lose the bags under my eyes.  I’ll open windows and fumigate my much-neglected house (even though hubby did a great job keeping things manageable!).  This is what life is starting to look like…on April 14th…to a weary tax accountant.

Remember this:  Just keep plodding on.  Where there’s life, there’s hope.  And on Friday, a warm bed that I won’t have to climb out of until I’m good and ready!!!

Tea Parties and Snarky Moods

I’m very antagonistic today. I don’t know why.  I’m glad to be off work and I feel good about getting things done.  But everything I see today is getting me worked up and ready for a fight.  I don’t know why.  But I do know this–I’m not going to write an original post when I’m feeling like this.  Instead, I’m going to divert you over to Oldest Son’s blog.  He is quite good with words, when he’s in the mood.  Yesterday, he attended the local “tea party”, one of many going on throughout the country.  The sheer number of people that went out, even in our rainy weather, gives me hope that people still do care about our country and want to restore it to the fine place it used to be, the land of opportunity that our founding fathers envisioned.

If you read the comments on his post, this is just one example of me having to say what comes to mind, even if the comment has nothing to do with me personally.  I don’t often do that.  I also commented on people’s Facebooks today, when normally I would just roll my eyes.  Like the kid that said “Go Philly.”  And I said, “Philly sucks.”  Because they do.  And on another one, I just let spill decades of irritation, but of course, in one short sentence.

I’m just feeling snarky as hell.  Is it menopause?  Is it residual resentment at the last-minute a-holes that brought their tax returns in right before the deadline?  Seriously, if I owned the joint, I’d charge them a flat fee of at least $50 just for bringing their crap in after April 8th.  And these are generally the people that don’t even give you all the information you need to do their return.

Whatever it is, I’m going to spare you all.  I’m going for a walk.  Maybe tomorrow I’ll have something uplifting to say.

An Accountant’s New Year’s Day

We’re so predictable.  After you’ve been around for a while (like me), you start to notice the cycles of life.  They’re created by the weaknesses, and then the resiliency, of the human spirit.  We succumb to the temptations of the holidays only to make desperate yet well-intentioned resolutions after the holiday season.  Every January I laugh at the sales circulars advertising storage bins and home organizers.  We gather more things, then crave a simpler more organized home.

For us tax accountants, there is yet another season of reckless abandon and giving in to vices.  April 16th becomes our new years day of hope and salvation, strength and resolution.

Of course, the only vice we have time for during tax season is stuffing our face with comfort food.  And maybe an extra glass or two of wine or beer in the evening.  Coupled with sitting at a desk for 8 to 10 hours a day and no desire to spend the few precious work-free moments sweating to the oldies, the resolve to get back into shape before swim-suit season will be very powerful.  Unlike New Years Day resolutions, these ones may even last longer than a few weeks.

My boss understands the motivation of tax-season comfort food.  Friday, he stopped at each of our offices and asked which “fattening, not-good-for-you food” we would prefer for Saturday morning.  “Donuts, cobblestones, or Danish?” he asked.  I was pretty sure the boss liked the cobblestone muffins, but I myself prefer a good cheese danish.  I heard Ron say he wanted cobblestones.

As much as I don’t normally crave pastries (I prefer my empty calories in the form of decadent dips and cheesy delights), I have to give a huge thumbs up to the bakery wizards at Panera Bread.  While Ron and my boss were marveling at the magnificent size of the cobblestone muffin tops, I stood drooling at the loveliness of the ring of Danish before me.  It was a continuous connected ring of cheese, cherry, and apple danish.  I couldn’t decide which I wanted so I cut off a cheese AND a cherry danish.  And then I went back for another cherry-filled flaky pastry.

In about two weeks, they’re going to have to pry me out of my desk chair and roll me out the door for our annual after-tax-season luncheon.  But you’ll probably see me, the very next day, gingerly jogging through the streets of my neighborhood, firmly resolved to get back into my bathing suit before it’s time to open the pool.

Happy Mama Was Annoying EVERYBODY

After working a stressful 56-1/2 hour week, I came home from work Saturday feeling like a weight was lifted off my chest.  Not only did we finish up all the tax returns that had, just a few days before, been hopelessly piled up on the shelf, I didn’t even have to come in on Monday the 14th.  Spring had arrived.

For some reason, this made me want to sing.  Just like Big Daddy hums when he’s eating a meal that he really enjoys, I guess I sing when I’m content.  And I was just belting it out all weekend.  Worse, since I’ve been stuck listening to “office pop tunes” all day for the past few months, these are the songs that are stuck in my head.  So most of Saturday and all of Sunday, I would just start singing that Daughtry ditty about “going home.”  I was doing it at first without even realizing.  I just felt so happy I wanted to belt it out.  And I guess the sentiment in me was that now I could BE home taking care of all the things I’d had to neglect for so long.  But once the boys started pleading and yelling for me to “Shut up, mom,” I felt even more compelled to serenade them with my feelings.

And while I was singing these pop tunes that under normal circumstances I would probably never even hear, I started to realize something.  Some of these songs aren’t that bad.  But most of the ones that are tolerable are ones performed by past American Idol contestants.  Which just goes to prove that all the stage parenting, marketing, and knowing the right people is no substitute for real talent.  And I hope the show stays around for a while just to allow people the opportunity to enjoy some real talent.

OMG My Brains are Fried

I don’t even know if it’s a good idea to try to write anything today because it may end up like one of those papers you might have tried to write in college, pulling an all-nighter because you procrastinated ’til the last minute.  And when you go to read it the next day, there are literally sections of the paper that must have been written while you were dozing.  Big Daddy had a doozy like that.  He had strung together sentences out of words that he pulled out of the air.  We laughed our asses off reading it the next day.

But I’m sitting here waiting for mom’s friend to show up to pick up her tax return.  And so I can’t really just lay down and close my eyes.  I may not wake up.  I’m too tired to do anything that would take any physical exertion.

With the exception of two returns, EVERY SINGLE return I’ve picked up has some major freaky thing to deal with the last week or so.  And it’s very late in the season.  And because of all the problems and everyone seeming to get their K-1’s late and so many damn corrected 1099’s coming out later than usual this year, we’re not in very good shape.  I was going to stay later today than I did, but I couldn’t think anymore.  My brain hurts.  My boss spent an hour with me trying to figure out why our top of the line software was coming up with such convoluted figures on one return.  Eventually, he ended up having to call the software company to find out how to get around the glitch.  They’re all these one of a kind problems that we’re running up against and I’m just too tired to deal with them.

The kids in the office have spots on them.  They had the chicken pox vaccine but their mom thinks they might have a mild case.  And two other people at work are sick again, too.  So the way things are going, I’ll be on my deathbed on April 15th instead of enjoying our annual end-of-tax season lunch.

Be Kind To Your Tax Accountant

No, I haven’t died.  I would feel much better than I do if I had, in fact, died.

Easter is just too early this year.  Usually it falls later into tax season, and sometimes even after.  Then we’re pretty much past crunch time.  Even though we always have our last minute filers who make it a ritual to bring their stuff in say like April 13th, I’m usually quite able to assess the fact that I will be able to finish up before our annual April 15th lunch.  Right now, however, there is a mountain of work waiting for my tired little brain.  I actually went to bed at 11:00 p.m. last night.  That’s like farmer’s bedtime for me.  I’m that tired.  And now Sunday, the only day off I have during tax season, I have to spend at Mom’s for Easter dinner.  Which usually would be nice.  But there is a mountain of laundry that I usually get done on Sunday.  And instead I’ll be eating ham with the fam.  And I’ll feel guilty. And I hope nobody expects any Easter gifts.  Because they’re not getting them.  No cards, no Easter flowers.  And nobody boiled any Easter eggs, either.  Deal with it.  I believe Easter Bunny, however, with the help of Big Daddy, will provide his usual assortment of goodies.  Everyone else can just accept my presence as their Easter gift this year.
And for you, Soldier Son, I’m glad I get to talk to you online.  While the rest of the family was home for Easter break, sleeping in on Good Friday, there we were at work.  And Saturday, too.  At least the traffic was light.  I hope you don’t mind that my letters have slowed down, but Big Daddy did send a package recently.  And I, unlike you, will try to keep my blog alive.  I keep checking for new posts on yours.  C’mon, slacker dude!

The Sunday Blues (Tax Season Begins)

Well, I was expecting it.  And it came on Thursday.  The call from my boss asking if I was available to start back to work on Monday (that’s tomorrow!).  Of course, I said yes.  I love my job.  The work itself is like building a puzzle, piecing together all the transactions of a year and fitting them together within the confines of the IRS tax code so that our clients can keep as much of their hard-earned money as that code allows.  My boss appreciates me and so do the clients–unless they’ve really mucked things up and there’s not much we can do to put their money back in their bank accounts.  But in that case, they usually blame my boss.  Or the government.

Sunday always has a somber feel to it.  Even when I was a kid I didn’t like Sunday.  Even when I’m not working I get what I call “The Sunday Blues.”  Because I mourn the loss of the weekend for the kids going back to school and the husband going back to work.  But now the grief is more personal.  I mourn for the freedom to plan my days on a whim.  I’ll miss being able to pull the warm covers over my head for an extra hour or two.  I’ll hate not being able to spend the day in my comfy sweats.

But once I get to work I’ll be fine.  With the exception of the first waking hour of the day, I like Monday better than Sunday.  I’m excited to face the day’s challenges and I’m generally rested up from the weekend.  I’ll be happy to catch up with my co-workers who are like a second family.   I’ll feel at home in my cozy office with its wall of windows overlooking a shopping plaza, drinking all the coffee I can handle.

So today I’m feeling the blues.  But tomorrow is another day.

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July 2020

Pittsburgh Bloggers

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