How NOT to Do Your Taxes

Taxes (Photo credit: Tax Credits)

1. Wait until the afternoon before they are due. This enhances your stress level.

2. Make sure the toddler is a) home, b) not sleeping well, and c) going through a clingy phase. Having a toddler on your lap, reaching down your shirt, and begging to ‘eesh more‘ will really improve your ability to think clearly.

3. Also make sure the toddler is going through a BANG! CRASH! THROW! BREAK! phase. This undermines concentration.

4. Accidentally-on-purpose, be tapering off your anti-depressants. This will further undermine your concentration and really increase the intensity of your snarly commands to your significant other to HELP.

5. Nod your head in agreement when your significant other volunteers to cook a fantastic, four-course Mediterranean feast with enough left-overs for the week. This will allow you to appear ungrateful and bitchy later, when you get frustrated with him for cooking instead of helping with a) the toddler, and b) the taxes.

6. Make sure, despite your good intentions and best efforts, to not have quite saved every single donation receipt.

7. Don’t document your mileage for driving you did for contract work. It’s not like that’s deductible or anything.

8. Discover that as a self-employed consultant, you earned just enough to cover child care and taxes last year, and wonder if it was worth it. Also discover that the several thousands of dollars of pro bono work you performed is not deductible. Try not to just quit and pout and doubt your purpose in life. Go take an antidepressant.

9. See items #2 and #3 and remember THAT’s why it’s a good reason to maintain child care. Also, tell yourself the work you do matters, and it’s interesting.

10. Realize you can’t download your student loan interest statement because the loan servicing center’s website is down for maintenance, naturally, but keep checking back because they are probably in a different time zone.

11. Send your former nanny an email saying you forgot to report the additional withholding she’d requested. Offer to write her a check. Get her hopes up. On tax day, when you are finalizing everything, realize you DID in fact report things correctly and you made a mistake because of reasons #1 through #5. Apologize and feel crappy.

12. Somehow, manage to eek out a small refund, and hope that you didn’t screw things up too badly.

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27 thoughts on “How NOT to Do Your Taxes

  1. Two business, still use Turbo Tax. But I also use Quicken for Business and transfer everything into Turbo Tax then work backwards. It works pretty well.

    The work you do is important.

  2. Eek. Miserable. We are so lucky to have a neighbour who (get this) likes filing taxes. This year he did mine, my spouse’s and our three income-earning dependents for $100. And he feels sheepish for asking that much!

    OK, I have a feeling I’m not making you feel any better.

    1. ha!

      It gets better. I forgot to include the part about “Review husband’s investment statements and see that his ex-wife is still listed as a beneficiary”!

    1. And we forgot to buy wine when we were buying all the ingredients for the tabouli, mjadra, kibbeh, and what can only be called the ‘special nutmeg spinach.’ A drink is definitely on the menu tonight.

      1. I’ve had tabouli from a Lebanese pal, but can’t pronounce anything else on your menu. Shame on you for forgetting wine. Even so, I hope dinner is delicious and you avoid being audited.

        1. Yes. We are going to work with an accountant from here on out. TurboTax just doesn’t cut it anymore. Being self-employed and having a household employee for part of the year has made it too complicated!

    1. Thank you! I’m pretty sure I’ll make LESS than we’ll pay in childcare this year, but I’m also going to go back to school for a certificate in non-profit management to update my Master’s and do some networking. And it’s good for mommy not to go crazy.

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