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Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Myspace Migration: Deadlines, Long Lines, & the Tax Man Cometh

I think we'd all agree that patience is a virtue... or, at least, we're all told it is. Some times I'm more patient than others, but I think that's fairly normal. This particular blog centers more around the "impatient moments" of my life as of late.
We have to finish 48 pages of the yearbook by this Thursday. Something of an arduous task, made worse by the fact that I have an Executive Board Meeting of the PTA tonight and this just in, our pictures are all screwed up. I can't tell what kid is in what class and there's no way to properly flow the pictures onto the pages (1). So, I put a call and email in to my friendly yearbook advisor at Lifetouch ~ and I have yet to hear back from her. I'm guessing she didn't work yesterday due to the inclement weather, but man! I'm on a deadline and would it kill her to check her email???? LOL Really, I'm not upset, I'm just needing to get.this.done!!

So I crashed out with the kids last night (I know, nothing new). But, because I went to sleep so much earlier than normal, I woke up at 2am... totally bored, to an infomercial. They were talking about creating "long lines" - some exercise product that I couldn't see because my contacts had once again slipped to the back of my eye (which is probably why you shouldn't fall asleep with them in!). Ok, now I know it's been awhile since I was in school... but I'm thinking that the "lines" we have are pretty much the same length regardless of whether they're curved or straight? Am I not remembering my middle school math right? It's an illusion that the curved line is shorter?? Since that is my current belief system, I laughed at the infomercial and changed the channel. Like anyone needs yet another Pilates DVD, anyway (speaking of which, I'm really enjoying the 3rd one I got, lol).

Got my W-2 in over the weekend. Will probably go ahead and get my tax returns done today. I hit a different tax bracket and so I lost all my cool deductions. Drat. Even still, I have something of a refund coming back (about 4k), so I'm not complaining. Now, I know all you financially saavy people are screaming at the monitor that I'm a dolt for giving the government a tax-free loan. That I could MAKE money by changing my deductions and getting a 1-yr CD. And, you know what? You're right. And you're wrong. First of all, I already claim 9 deductions, which is darn near close to the most I can take. I think I gave our payroll chick some kind of pause, because she even emailed me about it! But, the deal is that I work on commission... so my commission checks are taxed at around 33% (like a bonus). So, I paid about 30k in taxes last year - with 9 deductions on my regular paychecks. There's really not much more I can do.

Secondly, even though you COULD put that money into a CD, you can't do it in the same year. Think this through: the money I get back in 2007, I paid all throughout 2006. So, assuming I could increase my deductions and keep more, I'd have to put THAT money in a savings account throughout the year so that in 2007, I could then put that money into a CD. In 2006, with simple interest in the savings account, I'd probably make what? Ten dollars? Woowzers! And, when you really think it through further, you're assuming I have the discipline to not just let it become part of my household income, as most Americans do. Which, I'm telling you now, that extra $40 that I actually have control over would probably NOT be saved - it'd probably go to frivolous junk like little girl clothes, or ballet lessons or something of the like.

Finally, I'm one of those weird-os that just feels comfortable getting a check back from Uncle Sam. I like it. I really do. That's "fun money" for the family. This year, we got a TV. The rest of it will go to savings. Last year, I bought a new desktop computer for the girls and I. And the rest went into savings. I'm ok with that.... now, the Good Lord help me if I ever have to pay the Tax Man anything more than what I pay throughout the year. I'm pretty sure that'd give me a heart attack.
On a final note, I'm getting my taxes prepared at Jackson Hewitt. Why? Because they've done a great job over the last 6 years and I don't get audited. Also, because my old accountant bought a franchise and I like him. Thirdly, they pay for the attorney's fees SHOULD I ever get audited and I'm pretty sure the fine (if there is one) up to 5k. I'm a safety-girl... that makes me feel warm and fuzzy. All for the bargain basement price of a couple hundred dollars. That I get to deduct come the next tax year. :) But, to tie in the whole patience angle (I know you've been waiting patiently for it! :p), I really think that once you put in your return, they should give you your money back within 48 hours. It's checked by a computer, anyway. I don't see why it should take longer than two days.

Have a good day, guys and dolls.. I've got to go find a sweater and get to work!!
(1) I know the whole flow thing doesn't make a lot of sense to anyone not putting together the yearbook. We're using a web-based system that has a portrait library where you pick a number (which is supposed to represent a class), it will "flow" that set of pictures onto the page. Except ours is screwed up and not working that way. Fun, fun, fun.

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