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Taxes, cooking for a funeral, getting ready to paint...


I woke up early one morning and could not sleep. I kept thinking about the large amount of money that my mom owed on her taxes.


So I went to the Internet and started Googling different tax

items. I spent a lot of time on the IRS site reading publications and researching. I then pulled out her taxes and started going through them line by line. I also called the 800# at the IRS several times to ask questions to clarify certain points.


About seven hours later, I had learned enough and made a few changes, found some things her tax representative had not seen and made changes.


I went back on Monday and we made the changes, meaning an amended return, but now owing $2000 less than original.


My husband kept saying “Wow, you’re so smart!” However, I really don’t see it that way. I think persistent is a better word for me.


Once something is in my mind, I just have to pursue it, research it, look, read, study, ponder, and ask questions until I resolve whatever it is.


This can be a very good quality when it has something to do,for example: with my taxes as it saved us money, but I also know that at times,I have driven people around me crazy while I am consumed in my present search.


This past week brought two snow/ice storms to Oklahoma. One day, the ice came in just an hour before school. Of course, all the schools were closed for the day, including my husband’s. But instead of being able to be lazy, we had a funeral to attend.


I had volunteered to help with the food. The day before I had made 4 pounds of a mixed beans (15 types) soup. I also had some leftover small red beans and added them all together. I used the ham bone that was left from last week’s ham.


My goodness, it was some of the best beans I have ever made,or was it just because it was so cold and miserable outside that the beans tasted so good.


I also made 2 large pans of corn bread. I used a cheap mix from the store, but right before I put them in the oven I sprinkle some sugar(very lightly) on top. The sugar makes all the difference. It browns the top and creates a seal that makes the bread moister.


For us (for dinner), we made mashed potatoes, rice, and carne guisado (but using pork). Wow, the house was full of good smells. Every inch of counter was covered with food, then we had to go to work, instead of staying at home and eating...which, I guess, is good.


I also made 20 loaves of Apple-Coconut Bread, a pan of brownies with chocolate chips and melted marsh mellows on top, and three large pans of peach cobbler. Other ladies brought a myriad of food, as well.


When we got to the funeral and were bringing in the food- oh my, was there food. Oklahoma is great for feeding people. We always have plenty of food at pot lucks which is a great thing.


After we left there, Fito and I went to do errands. It was nice to be together, even if it was just doing chores. We have been so busy lately and work different nights that we just don’t spend enough time together. 


I went with Maria and Rebeca one afternoon to buy everything to paint Xander’s room. We plan to paint it tomorrow. She is planning a monkey and jungle theme. Xander absolutely loves his stuffed monkey. 


When we lived in Kansas, I did all kinds of decorating: painting, stenciling, wall papering, glazing, and so on. This house was already painted nicely so I have only had to do a few things.


It actually is very fulfilling to plan, look for bargains, paint, and completely transform a room (and when you do it for very little money) it is even more amazing. 


This past week, too, Maria and Travis found a beautiful wood crib for $100 on Craigslist. Then the next day, I went with her and she bought a nice mattress for $30. Today, I sold a wheel chair hitch for $200 on Craigslist. We really like Craigslist.


Last night I did Matthew's taxes and some other paper work. One of life's frustrating tasks, but always important to so.


I took my mom to get her hair done today. We went to a different place than normal and the lady did an incredible job. She also clipped the hairs on her face and trimmed her eyebrows for free. It is also a walk-in place so I do not have to set a specific time. Nor do I have to pay if she doesn’t go. 


It seems at times we have used a certain service for so long we just do not want to change, but then when something in life happens and we make the change we may just find out that it was welcome and indeed, a blessing. Do not be afraid of change.


Remember it is our attitude that determines more than anything our happiness. Happiness is a decision, and I pray that each of us may choose to be happy and serve others.  

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