Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Time To Do Our Taxes!

Some of you may have read about our monthly budget time, but today we will share about our yearly tax time!! This was our third year to use TurboTax. The first year was a bit of an adventure when B had played baseball in so many states and technically had gotten paid there - so we really had to put our two heads together and focus! Last year we felt like we knew what we were doing a little bit more - and had the motivation of the $8,000 new home buyer's credit on the other end of the line. This year was definitely our easiest year yet. 

The way we approach this time is very similar to our monthly budget. We carve out an afternoon (this year it was Sunday afternoon after B’s long winter’s nap, Whit’s favorite walk around the neighborhood, and watching UK beat UNC to move forward to the Final Four)... Before we start anything, we pray. We thank God for the many blessings He has given us - including our jobs that make this money possible. We know that this money is HIS...and we pray that He will continue to lead and guide us as to where to give it to bless people, as He has blessed us. 

Brandon gathers all the W2 forms, donation clips from the charitable giving throughout the year, and our files from year’s past - as I log on to TurboTax. It’s totally a team effort as I click the button and read out the question - and Brandon looks to our papers to find the answers. The key to a smooth tax filing session is ORGANIZATION!! When you have all the papers right in one place - it is smooth sailing. TurboTax does a great job of making the process simple - all you do is follow the directions and provide the information. We learned from years past that filing taxes is so much easier when you save all the tax deduction papers in one place. For instance, if you receive a tax receipt from a non-profit organization throughout the year - go ahead and make a folder that is your “catch all” for that sort of thing so that you know right where it is when it’s tax filing time. That has made our tax filing life so much easier!! 

Throughout the whole afternoon/evening of this process, we stop and look at each other multiple times and say, “We are so blessed”... It’s such a cool thing to see how the Lord continues to provide - and it really is motivation to keep a positive attitude about working hard. Nothing worthwhile is easy. It’s a cool team building time for us to set aside a few hours to crank this out in one sitting - and we always feel like we have conquered the world when we press the SUBMIT button after our last review, when it’s all said and done. Here’s to hoping that you have as much fun filing taxes as we do...
Closing statement from the man of the house: Filing taxes can be fun. Pick a day & get ‘er done!”

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