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On Taxes

Here is what I knew about filing taxes:
  • Filling out the forms usually takes about 45 minutes, including addressing envelopes and finding stamps.
  • Finding the paperwork necessary to complete the forms usually takes about an hour and a half.
  • Being a student REALLY helps.
  • The instructions are convoluted and generally send you in lots of crazy directions.
  • I love my graphing calculator (though I don't really need the graphs for this).
  • State forms are a breeze as long as you only live in one state.
Things that are different this year:
  • I was, at no time this year, a student (first time since I was 4).
  • For the first time in a really long time, I only have to file state taxes in one state.
  • I knew where the paperwork and stamps were (savings of 1 hour and 25 minutes, plus no mess from dumped out desk drawers!).
  • I only had a W-2 from one place of employment.
  • The instructions were not all that complicated and were generally helpful, with lots of worksheets, tips, and caution signs.
  • U.S. Treasury bonds put into savings in a year when you are not a student = an increase in taxable income.
  • My student loan company sent a correction to their original 1098 - on the top of one of my bills. Thank goodness I keep those in some semblance of order.
  • I have filled out one version of the 1040 twice (with two different results) and another version of the 1040 once (with a third result).
  • Until I own a house, have children, or get horribly sick (never hoping for the last and the first two seem to be a bit in the future), the standard deduction will be my friend.
  • I have been sitting here for close to two hours poring over state and federal forms.
  • None of these results are promising and I am going to have to have my dad look over my forms for the first time in a decade.
After a really successful weekend as a grown-up, hosting my first major holiday at my house with much of my immediate family, I have to follow it up with apparently not being together enough to do my own taxes. Oh, and revealing that I waited until two days before to take care of them. I guess sometimes being prepared and having everything ready still doesn't make it easy.

Hope yours went better than mine!

Love always, ~Heather


Heather Gray said…
Wow, Heather, that sounded complicated. We started using Turbo Tax online about 5 years ago and will never go back to those blasted paper/pencil forms. You may want to look into it and save yourself the headache. It's free for standard deductions. Happy Tax Day!