Category Archives: income tax

Kinder gardening



When it comes to gardening, the Mister and I truly are of the “kinder” variety. Not “kinder,” as in nice (although we are, of course), but “kinder” as in the German word for children. Yep, when it comes to having a green thumb, we’re total babes in the woods (or in the backyard, in this case).

Last spring the Mister actually built me a raised vegetable bed at the side of the house. He thought he put it in the best location: Plenty of sun and smack dab in the middle of in-ground sprinklers. Of course, once it was built, one of our engineer friends, Robert, came over, took one look at the Mister’s proud handiwork, and declared that the area would never drain. And, of course, he was right. We did manage to grow a gazillion cucumbers but only one cherry tomato and one half-hearted regular tomato (the birds seemed to enjoy the rest). Nothing to write home about, that’s for sure, and very disappointing for someone like me who lives to eat vegetables.

The Mister waters what he's planted.

The Mister waters what he's planted.

Now that we’re in the last days to get tomato plants in the ground, the Mister and I are throwing caution to the wind once again—Friday we went to the local feed store and bought plants and then Sunday we put them in the garden (“we,” of course, meaning the Mister, while I took photos). Unlike last year, this time the Mister bought cages for the tomato plants, so they don’t fall over as they get taller (like they did last year when he—no surprise for us—procrastinated and never did buy cages). I’ve gathered red ornaments from his office Christmas tree to put on the cages in what probably will be a foolhardy attempt to trick the birds.

Here’s what we’ve optimistically planted: Several different varieties of tomatoes (cherry, Old German, Best Boy, Roma, and Early Girl), bell peppers, sweet banana peppers (especially for the Mister), and, of course, cucumbers, because, God knows, we can grow cukes!

Don’t the plants look so full of promise? I’m cautiously hopeful that this time we will succeed and get to enjoy the fruit of our bounty! Or at least a tomato or two.

Better Boy tomato plant

Better Boy tomato plant

Cherry tomato plant

Cherry tomato plant













Taxing no more

Did anyone go through a sleepless night, wondering if I had finished yesterday’s tax prep get ’er done? The wait is over, and the answer is: Yes! I actually got it done! The Mister has taken our information and will meet with our tax accountant to give it to him. I’m sure I’ll get a call or two from Romeo before all is signed, sealed, and delivered, but at least it’s off my plate for now. Of course, I still need to file receipts that we should keep; I think I’ll make that today’s get ’er done!

Very Taxing!


When Sheldon, the brainiest of the brainiacs on “The Big Bang Theory,” knocks on their neighbor’s door, this is what he does and says:

Knock knock. “Penny!” Knock knock. “Penny!” Knock knock. “Penny!” 

Here’s what I feel like doing right now as I bang my head against the wall:

Knock, knock. “Susan!” Knock, knock. “Susan!” Knock, knock. “Susan!”

Just look at today’s date: March 23. Tax day is in a mere 24 days! And how close am I to being prepared to take our tax information to Romeo, our accountant? About as close as I am to being Miss America!

Saturday in the mail we received Romeo’s annual typed cattle prod, claiming that it’s time to think about filing an extension. Romeo knows that I hate extensions, so I think he’s just trying to goad me into action. Well, it’s worked! Today’s get ’er done? Get the tax info ready.

Of course, if I was only like JJ, my organizational wiz of a next-door neighbor, I’d already be done with the tax stuff. It would all have been signed, sealed, and delivered weeks ago. If I was only like her, I could easily add up all the receipts, type up a summary, and be good to go. But, sadly, that is not how I roll. Ever.

How am I doing with my tax prep? Well, I’ve gotten the pile of receipts down from their resting place on a shelf. And I have a pencil. I still need to find a calculator and some paper. Then I’ll be ready to work, probably with several breaks in between. In fact, the first breaks are upcoming: I need to take clothes out of the dryer, eat lunch, and run errands. But, as God is my witness, I will prevail! The tax prep will get done! And I’ll drop it off at Romeo’s this week to be filed on time! I hope!!

TV watch

Speaking of “TBBT,” it’s not on tonight. I don’t want to watch two episodes of “How I Met Your Mother”; I want my usual 7 p.m. show! I’m loving the March Madness, CBS, but I don’t like when you mess with my TV schedule.

The best bracketologist in the house!

college-basketballSpeaking of March Madness, I think I’ve got an insurmountable lead in the family prognostication pool! I was the only one to properly pick the entire Sweet 16! I earned extra points with my two #12-#5 upset specials (Wisconsin over Florida State and Arizona over Utah), as well as my three #10 over #7 picks. I just wish I had selected #13 Cleveland State over #4 Wake Forest (but I figured that would be a reach).

Here’s my Elite 8: Louisville, Kansas, Connecticut, Memphis, Duke, North Carolina, Syracuse, and, finally, heart attack-inducing Pitt (my overall pick). All of the games should be close. CBS loves the nailbiters, as do I, as long as Illinois wins big (not a problem this year, though, is it).

Any other bracketologists out there? If so, how are you doing in your pools?