Thursday, February 4, 2010

Death and Taxes

Good morning all.

It IS a good morning. Despite the rain. Despite the cold. Despite the fact that my eyes really don't want to stay open at all. It's going to be a good day.

February hasn't started too swiftly at our house. It's just stress, stress, and more stress! Had an issue come up pretty unexpectedly while filing our taxes this year which was very strange. Absolutely nothing has changed on our end from last year as far as incomes and withholdings and exemptions and all that wonderful stuff, yet somehow when I calculated it, we ended up owing money instead of getting a nice little refund we got last year. No one can seem to explain to me how that happens.

But then when we calculated in all the financial stuff from DGP, it all ended up okay. Still not even close to as good as last year for some unknown reason, but still we're not in the hole. In the interim it did cause a fair amount of stress and tears at our house though. But we got it resolved.

THEN. P gets a LOVELY letter in the mail saying that he owes literally THOUSANDS of dollars in back child support for his kiddos. Umm, I'm sorry. WHAT?! This man has been the most diligent father I've ever seen in paying his child support. In fact, just to make sure he didn't mess it up, three years ago he just started having the state take it out of his paycheck. I came home Friday to a husband with his head in his hands nearly in tears at the kitchen table. Even despite his best efforts to explain to the lady from the Attorney General's office on the phone that he has never missed even a month of child support and has all the records to prove it, she still said, "I'm sorry, sir. You still owe over $15,000 in back child support." I understood why he was crying.

Turns out in the final divorce decree there was some sort of mix up with the court's paperwork or with the state or with the lawyer handling the case. P was told to do one thing and the court order that was filed did not reflect what P was told to pay regarding his child support. (Which is BAFFLING to me because the STATE determines how much gets taken out of his paycheck. If what was being paid was wrong, why did they not correct it??) Nevertheless, three years later, here we are. With a brand new mortgage and $15,000 dollars in debt because someone else dropped the ball.

Thankfully, he called his lawyer and things will be worked out hopefully within the month and he won't be liable for most of that money. But in the meantime, things will still be pretty tight until all the paperwork can be filed and make its way through the proper channels.

So our house hasn't been the most fun place to be for the last couple of weeks. But on the bright side, things are looking up. The tax issue is resolved. The child support issue is well on its way to being resolved, and even in the middle of all this chaos, I've lost ELEVEN pounds. This is monumental. Because I'm a TOTAL stress eater. But not anymore. I'm staying on track. I've had a whole shift of focus, and it feels wonderful.

I meant for this to be a blog about that. But it turned into something else. So, more to come on how interesting this food journey is. But for now, my kiddos are starting to trickle in from the rain and I've got to get them prepared for some juicy Holocaust goodness while we're reading chapters 2 & 3 of Night.

Nothing like a little genocide to put your worries into perspective. Right? :)