Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Thank God for small favors?

Hey Guys!  Remember I said I'd talk about surviving in this economy every now and then? Ok, originally I was going to do weekly essays, but after that nearly killed readership with one essay, I promised not to talk about it much.  Before you tune out, this will make you smile. I promise.

I'm going to see my accountant tomorrow to do my personal taxes.  My mother, as my business partner, handles the farm taxes with him--as well as the general financial management of the business.  No, it is not possible for me to run the business, manage the employees, teach the lessons, be the manual labor when no one else is here and do the financial management of the business.

I see how small business owners who don't have a partner dedicated to the financial part of the business get themselves into huge trouble!  When you're doing the day to day, you don't think about what's out of sight.  It's pretty easy for that stuff to get out of mind, too.  I am so incredibly thankful for my mother's contribution in this department. 

Ok, so here's the thing about getting together my personal financial information for the accountant in this economy...there's not much of it!  I remember when prepping for the tax appointment took two weeks!  I used to have to itemize every little tiny expense.  Why? So I didn't pay an arm and a leg in extra tax payments beyond the pound of flesh the government had already deducted from our paychecks. Today, the prep work took maybe 10 minutes.  Yep, 10 minutes.  You read it right.

I haven't become that much more organized than I was in the good ol' days of lots of extra cash.  I do still have to itemize thanks to some investments.  But, the days of every tiny receipt to chip away at that big dollar amount Uncle Sam wanted are gone, baby, gone.  I do kind'a miss the extra cash every now and then, but today I say: Thank God for small favors?

It's another way of looking at my circumstances in this economy.  No, I'm not making money hand over fist.  No way.  But, I am so incredibly lucky to still have good clients.  I am deeply thankful my gate is still open.  Farms around me are going under so fast, I'm getting my animals outfitted with life jackets.

Instead of being depressed and thinking "poor me", I'm grateful.  I am so incredibly grateful that I can keep running this farm.  I am so grateful I can keep my animals.  As long as there's enough money to feed me and the animals, I'm ok. 

Today, thanks to this rotten economy, I saved a ton of time prepping for my accountant tomorrow.  It makes me smile. Why? Because it's a lovely sunny day and I'm going to play ball with my dogs before I do evening chores.  I'm not flipping through files of documents instead of seeing my animals romp on the farm.

I don't miss my old life that much, with all of those season tickets and fancy meals the extra cash bought.  I don't miss the shopping sprees.  I do miss the expensive wine, but I allow myself a nice bottle every now and then.  You'd be surprised what you don't miss when you're happy.  Thank God for small favors...and really big ones, too...like happiness on the farm.

I hope you find time to do something that makes you happy.   Do that happy thing, whatever it is, instead of crying over the economy and your changed financial life.  Believe me, if I measured my happiness in dollars, I would cry too.  The numbers are dramatically different than they used to be.  But, I don't measure my happiness in dollars.  I never have.  Thank God for small favors!

Life is too short to be  unhappy.  We can all be gone in an instant. Smile. Be happy. I'm going to play ball with my dogs now.  They will be happy. Thank you for reading!

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