Monday, April 2, 2012

Fretful days

It finally happened. The recycling people FINALLY showed up and got the old ranger. They had scheduled to come either Tuesday or Wednesday. After I called they opted to show up on Thursday. Of course it had to rain that morning. The truck from the recycler got stuck on the wet grass and made a huge mess of my lawn. I know it can be remedied, but I have other things to do. I have more important tasks. It is bad enough that it will have to be done before I can mow. It just makes me sick to look at it. I will need to haul dirt down there. A task that would be made easier if my wheelbarrow actually had a round wheel. Damn thing couldn't hold air if my life depended on it. It also didn't help that I had to hook up my four wheel drive ranger to pull the damn recycling truck out. Then pulled the old ranger out. This used up the rest of my gas. I had just enough to get to town and because I had to rescue this guy, I was going no where. To say I was pissed off would have been an understatement. I pretty much spent the day pacing. I couldn't settle my mind on anything. By after noon I was exhausted. I made a couple of calls to see if I could squeeze everything into some sort of a schedule on Friday. It wasn't looking good.

But the day was shining and bright on Friday morning. I left with Mac in order to have a vehicle with gas. Got him to school, then turned around and drove back towards home, back to the recyclers to pick up the check. Put the check with my hay check, that I had been hanging onto, then turned back around and drove back into town. Went to the post office and got stamps. Went to the bank. It wouldn't open for at least a half hour so I sat in the car and wrote the checks for this months bills. Mac's paycheck would not be deposited until noon so waited to drop off the local checks but the ones that would be mailed were finished up. Only two bills left to pay when the bank opened. Got inside with what was left with my birthday/chicken money, the hay check and the recycler's check. I opened a farm checking account. A safe place to stash extra bits of cash when we come upon it so we have it when it came time to pay insurance, taxes etc. When money gets put into the everyday checking account, it tends to put gas in the car and buy groceries. So, we will try this new strategy.

Once the new checking account was opened, I drove forty minutes to Creston to meet with our tax preparer. It is a good thing that somebody else does this. I couldn't watch. I had to keep looking away. Had to fight the urge to pace. Hoped we wouldn't owe anything. I had written down all of the receipt totals, brought all the forms and interest statements. Thank goodness, there wasn't any need for explanation or conversation. Sandy just went through the program. Putting in numbers, clicking on boxes. Finally she said, "Looks like you'll be getting a thousand from Federal and about five hundred from State." I breathed.

Then I gave her the deposit slip for the new checking account. This money would go into the farm account. It will hopefully pay for insurance. I gave Sandy a postdated check to pay for her services. She has saved me once again. By now it was noon and I had to get to the Leon courthouse. I left Creston and drove the forty minutes back to Osceola, turned right and drove another twenty five minutes to get to Leon. Sorted through the paperwork found the property tax papers. I went inside and wrote the check for the taxes. There was now just thirty dollars left in the new account..... how depressing. I got back in the car and wrote out the last two checks of this months bills from our everyday account, dropped them in the mail. Headed back to Osceola. Now that it was after noon and the paycheck was "officially" deposited I went back to the bank, paid the mortgage and got a little cash.

The day was over. An entire day of crazy running.... dealing with money.... trying to retain composure... not always succeeding. In one day, the income is gone and we are back to broke. But the bills are paid. I reveled in the idea that we would have a bit of a buffer. We would have the tax return and I did some number crunching. How far would this take us? Could I get my grass seed? my chickens? How much money would I need to have the farm raise in order to be able to pay the next round of property taxes? I felt some momentary relief, then remembered that from this money I had to pay back the loan to my mother. The five hundred borrowed to pay for Mac's share of his mother's funeral. So, I have more money to raise then I thought. More to do. Not as much breathing room as I had hoped for.

The worst of it is that to add insult to injury, I look across the lawn and see this great gash of black in the green of my lawn. I need to fix that and I still can't justify the expense of buying a damn tire for the wheelbarrow, not when I still have to worry about buying groceries. Stupid damn truck getting stuck. Causing me work that I don't need! Well, I'm going to get a cup of coffee, then I had better get at it. The one thing about work that I have noticed..... it doesn't do itself.


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