Monday, January 24, 2011

It's Tax Refund Time

What was taking him so long to get online?

Didn’t he know that his W2 came up early which meant that we could file our taxes? No, he probably didn’t have any idea, which is why he was taking forever on coming online. Or maybe he did know, but he was torturing me. He likes to do that.

I was waiting (impatiently) for my husband to come on Skype so we could file our taxes. I kept checking the computer every few minutes and eventually wrote him a message:

“Hi! W2 is up! We can file taxes and get our refund back sooner and make our banking account very happy indeed.”

I sat in front of the computer screen, drumming my fingers against the computer desk. Any DAY now, Tom. It was his day off so he wasn’t working. He was sleeping. It must be nice to sleep in until whenever you’d like. I know it’s hard for him being in Korea while his family is in the States, but at least he gets time off.

“Mom?” Tommy asked. “I’m hungry.”

“Me too,” I answered.

He rolled his eyes. “Mo-om. When is dinner?”

I checked the time. Crap. I should start making dinner. Didn’t I just make dinner last night?

“Um,” I said, standing up. I went into the cabinet, pulling out a can of frosting and a knife and handed it to Tommy. “Bon Appetit.”

He took it and frowned. “This isn’t healthy. This isn’t dinner.”

Any other kid would be THRILLED to be handed over a can of frosting. But not my kid. He has Aspergers and is really big on rules. In his head, rules state that frosting is not a proper dinner. And he’s big on what is healthy and what is not, because he wants bigger muscles. He once scowled at me as I ate a Twinkie and went, “That won’t give you muscles.” Well, no, but it will give me happiness.

(And you should see Tommy’s reaction when we’ve had ice cream for dinner. Throughout it, he looks as though he’s in pain and will mumble, “I really don’t think this is a dinner.” Don’t worry, I also supply plenty of fruits and veggies.)

“Okay, fine! I’ll make dinner. Want some eggs?” I asked. I am not a fan of cooking. I wish I liked being in the kitchen. Granted, I do love food, I just don’t like to be the one making it.

“I’ll take eggs,” Tommy said, setting the frosting down and staring at it as though it were diseased.

So I made eggs, checking to see if Tom came online.

He didn’t.

We all sat down and ate—well, Natalie smeared her eggs across her plate and licked the jelly off her toast, leaving the bread.

I cleaned up and went back to the computer, not thinking Tom was on.

And then I saw Tom’s message.


Um. It’s not like I can hear him shouting.

I called him up and he answered.

“Did you get the W2?” I wondered.

Tom nodded. “Yeah. I already did the taxes.”

My heart dropped. “We were supposed to go over the numbers together.”

He is not the best with numbers. Neither am I. But I figure the both of us working on them together is good enough.

“I got it done,” Tom said, chomping on his beloved M&Ms. I wish I could go over there and hide his M&Ms.

“But Tom, we needed to go over everything. Did you even get our account number right? What if the money goes into someone else’s account? What if the money is just GONE!?” I was beginning to panic.

“It’s not gone,” Tom said calmly. Chomp, chomp, chomp.

“But how do I know—” And then I saw Tom smirking. “You didn’t really file the taxes yet, did you?”

Tom shook his head. “Nah. It’s just funny to see you riled up.”

I’m glad I amuse him. “That wasn’t funny, you annoying M&M freak.”

Tom raised both hands in the air. “Wow. Thems fighting words.”

“Just…let’s get it done so we can get the refund and consider ourselves rich for a few weeks even though Reese Witherspoon probably makes the amount we’ll get back per minute,” I said. I pulled out last year’s tax return. “So let’s get started.”

We plugged in all the numbers and got a nice amount back. Still, it’s not like we’re going to blow it. I’d like some to go into a savings account, some needs to go to a credit card, and I’d like a new bedroom set.

“But we’re not getting a black bedroom set,” I warned Tom after the taxes had been sent to the IRS.

“Why?” Tom loves the color back. When we were dating, he had black furniture and I felt like I was walking into a funeral home. Or, you know, Batman’s cave.

“Because it’s dark and depressing. I want something light and cheerful. Like oak.”

Tom stuck his tongue out. “Oak?” he repeated. He made it seem like it was a dirty word.

“Look, when you get back from Korea we’ll go bedroom set shopping after we move to Oklahoma.”

“I want a temper pedic bed,” Tom said.

“I’m not sure if it’s in our budget, Tom, and plus, our mattress is fine.”

“I want a temper pedic bed. If you give me that, I’ll give you oak.”

“We’ll see, Tom. Mind you, we’re also getting a new computer desk, since ours is falling apart. A piece nearly landed on my head the other day,” I said. It was true. There I was typing a chapter out in my novel and KATHUNK, a piece of the computer table landed by my arm.

“Temper pedic bed!” Tom chanted. When Tom gets stuck on a subject, he doesn’t like to move on. “And you don’t go nuts when the money is in our account. I know you and Target.”

“Target and I have an understanding,” I assured him.

Tom rolled his eyes. “Just don’t go nuts.”

“You don’t go nuts.”

“What the hell am I going to buy in Korea?”

“I don’t know. You said you loved this Korean woman who makes delicious Korean food. Maybe you’d ask if she was for sale because after all, I’m a crappy cooker.”

“We’ve been through this Amber, you can’t buy people. Every year for your birthday you ask for John Krasinski and I’m sorry, you can’t buy a human being.”


“We’re not talking about prostitutes. Just…don’t go nuts. If you want to go to New York, you can’t go nuts.”

“I won’t! Geez!” If all goes well, I’ll be going to New York in May. It’s an early birthday gift. I’ve always wanted to go to New York and it looks like it will finally happen this year. I’m going with Jennifer and we’re going to be total tourists.

So yes. Taxes are filed and now we’re playing the wait for our refund game.

And I won’t go nuts, either.

I might go nuts in New York though. They have amazing shopping and food.

I’m more excited about the food.

Oh, and jumping around on the giant piano that they have set up in FAO Schwartz.


  1. Isn't that the most exciting feeling. Like you are rich for just a day or two : ) and then you look at all the stupid bills you have to pay and you are like DARN IT! I am still poor. At least that is what I do : ) but for one or two, I am a rock star!

  2. I'd be excited about the NY food too. I love food. And tax refunds...I need to get on that.

  3. Tax refunds are awesome! I can't wait to get all our crap together so we can file. I think we're getting a refrigerator. How glamourous!

  4. I almost cried when I saw the giant piano at FAO Schwartz!

    Yeah for your refund! We never get a refund. We always owe. Self employment sometimes sucks. Except for when you give yourself the day off!

  5. New to your blog. Love it!! We have some things in common. I adore Target!!! Any way, my husband was quick to file our taxes on Friday, once the W2's were available. We are Air Force.
    I'm going to New York too!! In October for my 30th birthday, with my sister and best friend. Enjoy.

  6. I.Hate.Taxes... a good year, we break even... a normal year, we pay in... ugh...

  7. I have a son that is like that... the boy wont even eat pizza because he says it is not healthy. If I don't put out a dinner including something from every food group he has like a little anxiety attack.

  8. I think you should go a nuts. You deserve it for coping on your own.

  9. For some of us, it's tax paying day. Sob.

  10. Daughter and I want to go to Mode because we always see it on Project Runway and Sex and the City tours, Son and I want to see Ground Zero, and I want to go walk Broadway! Go to a show too. How can you not go nuts in NYC?

  11. tax season = blech.
    new york in may =

    i'll be there in April. how exciting. i love NYC!

  12. You already got your w2's? BOO! Where are mine? I need to get it done and feel "rich" for 2 seconds too. Glad yours are done and the good times are rollin. Oh, and I hope you get to go to New York too. It's the BEST!

  13. Wow! you're on top of the game! I hate taxes and I'm in school to become an accountant! NOT a good sign!

  14. I did the same thing with my taxes. As soon as I had that W2 I had my taxes done 20 minutes later. And I'm playing the waiting game now with the refund.... although the money is already spent (set aside) in my head.. Haha!

  15. I'm jealous you have filed already. I'm still waiting for forms. We have already planned how to spend the refund too.

  16. we're still waiting on our forms! So frustrating. I want to shop.

  17. OMG - jumping on the giant piano in FAO Schwarz is the best!! I was totally being Tom Hanks in BIG! In fact, that is my current profile pic on FB!! Total highlight of my trip to NYC a couple of years ago!

    And just FYI, the Statue of Liberty is smaller than it looks on tv. Nobody ever tells you that.

  18. My husband always waits till the last minute to file our taxes. Our refund is going towards a new roof. Bor-ing.

    NYC is the best. You'll have a blast!

  19. W2 is up is my favorite part. Hilarious!

  20. "Didn't I just make dinner last night?" Lol, YES, I feel that way every night! I do however enjoy cooking, but not for 3 picky kids. And I also enjoy eating more when someone else has cooked for me.

  21. How fun! I'd be excited about the food too!

  22. i have a little aspie girl who would be none too pleased to receive frosting for dinner either. she'd tell me it's inappropriate.

  23. Nothing beats money in the bank...though I'm gonna have to side with Tom..I do adore black furniture! ;)

  24. I loved New York when we visited there for a wedding. I think everyone should see the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. FAO Schwartz should be fun. You will have a blast with your friend!

    Yeah for having your taxes done already!

  25. The best part of late January/early February is the tax refund ;)

  26. I am 2 #'s away from filing this year... sad to say, it's all been spent already. ;(

  27. frosting for dinner sounde prefectly delighftul to me, however, i AM pregnant so take that with a grain of salt. ok, who am i kidding? i'd eat that for any meal, any time.

  28. I love tax season too! Glad you got everything filed in plenty of time. :)

  29. Ha Ha Ha annoying M&M eating freak. That cracked me up! I sooo can't wait to get our taxes done, unfortunately we are a small business owner & our accountant takes forever. uggghhh!!!

  30. I want to refund!! We always have to pay. I would be on cloud 9 with a little checky in the mail.

  31. NYC is the best, I'm lucky my husband is from the Bronx so we get to go about once a year. Hope your refund gets there quickly, we need to file ours ASAP!

  32. Did you already get your travel W-2 for when we went to Korea?? We can't file until the 31st because that's when it says travel W-2s are available....

  33. I live in should definitely do a hop on/hop off bus. (Any one of them would be fine, but I think the Gray Line - the red buses - are the best. You want the Downtown Loop for the most touristy stuff. Uptown loop is good for the museums and Central Park). Not sure how long you're planning on being here but try to do that on your first day. You can make it a whole day thing then go back to wherever you thought was interesting.


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