Super Mom

Work

Chemo scheduled

Everything has happened in slow motion. Too slow. More than a month after surgery, I will start chemo.

Next week Wednesday.

29 November 2017.

I feel like saying finally it will start but that feels wrong. I don’t want it to start. I also don’t want to wait any longer.

This weekend we have a family photoshoot. Will be nice to have those photos to look at as I go bald and feel sick. That sounds really negative but I’m just realistic. It is a fact.

I am thankful though that I could finish off the individual tax season without being on Chemo!

See..always a positive.


Can I play with your phone?

When we were little, my dad used to work for United Bank.  (I actually ended up working for them as well at some stage during my studies)

Anyway, I can clearly remember that when we used to visit my dad in his office I would ask him if I could play with his phone.

NOT the office phone because that was simply not done.

Obviously not the cellphone for this was way before cellphones.

I was this little “phone”   Actually a calculator.  It reminds me so of that time in our lives.  I still feel like that little girl.  I can clearly remember “talking” and calculating even as I got older

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My dad had a client this afternoon and they had their little granddaughter with them.  He heard her asking if she could play with the phone and just as he stretched to take hold of this phone, he realized that in fact she wanted her Ouma’s smart phone.

How things have changed.

How time flies as well.  No longer a little girl, holding a pretend phone against her ear, while talking to pretend clients and doing pretend calculations.  I now work with my dad, with proper phone against the ear, talking to very real clients with regards to their very real tax calculations.

 


Short fuse and Absa

I do have a lot of patience.  Really.

However, not with technology and not with banks.  (also not bad drivers – regtig heng is dit so moeilik om jou padreëls te ken)

Anyway, back to Absa…and in a way technology.

I needed to pay some creditors at the end of the month and all of a sudden I can’t.  Just like that.  Stupid message that just says “Not identified, not verified”

WTF.  How about some small message that makes sense!

After many many many many phone calls (where I was put through to roadside assistance, life insurance and some place where people speak to soft to hear if they are from earth) apparently there is a FICA hold on our account.  They need FICA docs.

However, since there was not change in account details, new products there is no need for it.  I don’t mind though.  I work in the financial sector.  I get it.  LET ME KNOW THOUGH.  I cannot all of a sudden not be able to pay people!!!

Another five days before I can use my account apparently.

I do not have the patience for this nonsense.  ABSA …. it’s not proper to say bad things on social media but ooohhhh I so badly want to.


Another year

When tax season ends, it feels like the end of the year.  Of course it is not near the end yet but it feels like it.  Probably because the school year normally ends the next week as well and we leave for Stilbaai soon after.

This year there will be no Stilbaai in December.  Tommie is working and that is why we went in September.

It doesn’t feel right though.  Feels like we should be going somewhere but we are not…weird…

Zander came home with homework for this last week of school.  If the department of education wasn’t involved with the exam papers this year, they would not even be at school.  So his mom decided that there would be no homework for him this week.

Quintus is on holiday already and poor Jason just started writing exams.  He is handling better than I would have as a child lol  Thankfully it is Departmental exams.  Not that difficult at all.

So best I get back to work, even though I would much rather be driving 12 hours to Stilbaai..


My brain was slower than my temper

I could not believe it.

I had a client walk into our office this morning, asking about some papers she had left here.  I asked if it were forms dropped off the previous day and she said no.  I then told her to ask our receptionist as she is a fundi in paperwork (and pretty much anything in this office!)

I then continued with my whatsapp discussion with a client.

In the end it was the papers she dropped off the previous day that she was looking for and she turned to my office and said:  “if you weren’t playing games on your phone, you would have known what I was looking for!”

Oh my soul!!  What’!?

I was not playing games on my phone, Lady.  Some people actually use their phones for WORK!

However, what I do with my phone is none of her business!!

Some people are SO arrogant!


Clients who get it

We are extremely busy.

Finding a balance between being a (good enough) mom and a professional is never easy.  I have done so for a long time and it has (thankfully) worked out well.

Now I have a little boy who needs some extra attention when it comes to his homework and as a mom I have to make a plan to do so.  I have decided that leaving at about 3pm will work for us.

Some clients don’t understand especially when they want a late afternoon appointment.  However, this morning I had a client in my office who is an engineer and earns more than I ever will. I was talking to another client on the phone who wanted a late appointment and I told this client why I don’t see clients in the afternoon.  (Normally I don’t though)

My client in the office actually got tears in his eyes and said that money can’t buy what I am doing for my son(s).

It felt good to know that he understood and actually appreciated what I did.

I am very lucky to be able to do this.  I am very lucky that I get to be an almost-full-time Mom.


Thank goodness

I must admit that I am ssssooooo thankful we don’t have a child born 28th of February. I might have had to change that child’s birthdate if that happened.

I survived the financial year-end and so did my family and our admin clerk. Oh my soul, Friday was hectic.

People take advantage by bringing in books that takes hours to do but want them submitted that same day. Never again. Next time my answer will be a clear NO.

Poor Kyla said she was too scared to talk to me and kept on wanting to get me coffee. I didn’t think I was that obviously stressed out.

I need a holiday now!

Oh wait no, no holiday. Now starts first term exams.

Fun times.


Not too bad

Well that wasn’t too bad. First day back to work and I survived 🙂

We were talking last night about how we would much rather braai than go back to work. Seems like we did okay though. One last week before things get really hectic.
Zander’s birthday next week, Quintus going to High School, the other two back to school.
Those first couple weeks are going to be crazy.

Good thing we start back at work before that hits us!


Stressful week

This week has been hectic to say the least.

Tuesday Zander went in for his operation. Even though he was so unhappy about having to go, he is doing so well now. He has not complained about pain once. Taking it all as just one of those things. I am very proud of him.

Then however he got a rash. Didn’t bother me at first since it looked like an allergy. It got worse though and looked more and more like German Measles. Now that in itself is not a problem but my brother’s wife is pregnant and has seen Zander since he has had the rash. I would be devastated if she got German measles from him!! I can’t remember when last I stressed that much. Just the thought of what could go wrong. I took him to TWO doctors who both said it is an allergy. In the end my SIL also said that is immune to the virus. Oh my soul. That morning was horrible.
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That was also on the same day Tommie went in to hospital to have skin cancer removed. Thankfully that went well. He is sore but the doctor is happy that he got everything out.

I have had to catch up on a lot of things at work. I was also alone in the office, with my dad working in Louis Trichardt.

I have also been really sick and in a lot of pain thank to the meds I took for an allergy.

I am glad we survived this week…hectic.

Now I just need to do Christmas shopping……


SARS and exams

Trust me, those two words don’t go together.

SARS and exams

And Grade 1 homework.

It has been stressful to say the least. I am so thankful the tax year ends tomorrow. I am going to work my butt off to get everything done but then it is over till next year!
Exams end on Wednesday.
We leave on holiday Thursday.

I have lots of VAT returns to be submitted before then. More stress.

BUT by this time next week, I will have dipped my feet in sea water, Jason will have had his calamari and Bella will be snoring on the couch next to my father-in-law..after dipping her little feet in the sea.

Oh I can’t wait.


Yesterday

Yesterday was bad.  A working relationship that I just knew would end up like this the first day I met the client, ended with the client shouting at me over the phone.  Not the first time the client has done that but I had had enough and told the client to please find another accountant.

I have never done this before but I could take the verbal abuse no more.

I felt horrible.  I felt horrible thinking someone could say such things to me.  That someone thought I wasn’t good enough.  I felt horrible thinking that maybe I let them down.

Then I thought of our morning at school, where we prayed with kids during Bible class.  Some of those kids have to go through what I went through on a daily basis.  Either from parents or other school kids.  While I think bullying is not that bad in our school, it is still there.  It is a reality.

I’m a grown woman, with means to cope with that.  Those children are not.  They don’t know how to cope with it just yet.  I’m so thankful that we have Wednesday Bible classes, where we can help them.  Teach them how to cope with such verbal abuse.  Where we can stop bullying before it gets out of hand. 

Words hurt.


Busy

My word…it’s Friday afternoon and I feel lost.

Quintus is in Rustenburg (Choir rehearsal) and Jason and Zander are still at school.  The school got some inflatables for them so they don’t want to come home!

I’m SO used to not having enough time to work in the afternoons that I almost feel lost in available hours. 

Wow. What a change


Homework

I wish I could remember how much easier homework goes when I leave work earlier. I do that and then after a while I stop because its too busy at work or someone wants something immediately and I just don’t go back to leaving early again. Until we reach break point and here we are…leaving early again.

Homework was a breeze today.

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This is my priority. I don’t want my kids to feel stressed or rushed any more than they have to. Not if I can help it.

Don’t know why I do this to us!!


Teachers ….. or not

I have been appointed as the Accountant of a number of farm school in the past couple of years.  It is interesting to look at their income and expenditure.  Where the money goes to.  I think it’s a shame how the money we pay towards education (through tax) doesn’t get allocated like it should.

That’s not what this is about though. 

I spoke to one of the principals about their transport costs and how high it is in comparison to their other expenses.  Of course I understand why but still, we sat down and discussed it some.

The MEC of education holds many a meeting, that these short-staffed headmasters have to attend.   They discuss finances mostly and how to reduce expenses, when these schools hardly have any to spend.

That’s not what this is about either.

This is about one of her teachers.  Her Grade 6 class (same age as Quintus) will be writing “outside” exams, as she calls it.  So she went to their class to follow up on their progress and realized that only one of the two teachers has come to school lately!  They both teach Grade 6.  One teaches 5 subjects and the other 4.

When she contacted the teacher, he said that he was off sick.  (He didn’t let her know at all)  She contacted him again and he said that he was still sick.  This more than a week later.  After another week, he told her that he couldn’t come to school because she is the cause of his stress and he now has depression.

He went and complained to higher ranked officials and she was reprimanded because she doesn’t “support” him enough!!!  He has HIV and she should be more supportive of his needs.

Uhmmmm okay….. what about the kids that need to study.  THEY need to be supported! 

If he was physically ill from the HIV, then probably more understandable.  But he is now depressed?  And he doesn’t need a letter from a doctor, he can just stay away.  And she needs to support him.

Now, she is teaching the kids on Saturdays and Sundays, so that they are ready for their exams.

URGH….weird country we live in.


That was quick!

Yet another tax season has come and gone.  One with very limited stress.  Which is kinda weird, since there is always some kind of crisis.  It was nice to leave the office at a normal 4 pm on the final submission day.  Just like any other normal day.

Also yesterday was the end of Quintus’ exams.  THANK GOODNESS!

I have a couple of things to complete Monday and Tuesday and then we are off on holiday.

….. with the in-laws.

We are going to their holiday home in Stilbaai.  Look it up.  It’s not called Stilbaai for no reason!  It’s a small, quiet town.  Where older folk go to retire.  A retirement village if you will.  On a big scale. 

Not much for the kids to do and we will be driving forever and two days to get there. 

There are a lot of nice places around Stilbaai though, so we will be travelling a lot. The kids have never been there.  We’ll take them to Witsand where we stayed over during our honeymoon.  To Victoria Bay, where we spent a night (or two) on our honeymoon as well.  It will be a different kind of holiday.  Not the normal lazy, swim in the sea all day long, kinda holiday. 

Little Bella dog will be joining us on this trip.  I think it’s her first trip to the sea.  I’m sure she’ll love it!  She loves taking trips.  Poor Max will be staying home but there is just no way we could take him out!  He is way too busy and unpredictable.

I’m glad and shocked that this year is coming to an end.  Not because it’s the end of 2011 but because it’s a month of be calm and relaxed.


….this is not what I want

So I’m 37.

No real surprise there.  It’s not a state secret or anything.

I’ve been working as an accountant for 15 years. 

No real secret there either.

I’ve been happy in my job for probably 5 of those 15 years.

Now that might be a surprise.

I don’t think there is one day that I enjoy my job.  Not one.  There is no satisfaction in my job.  None.  No one thanks you for telling them to pay taxes.  Even if you are helping them pay less.  They don’t want to pay at all. 

People like me (thank goodness) but they don’t like what I do.  I don’t end up being their favourite appointment of the day.

I so wish I had taken a different route when it comes to my work.  I always wanted to work with kids.  Maybe I should sommer go study again.  At my young age. 

I’m not even half-way through my working career and already I’m wishing the years away.

You know, I never wake up excited about the day…..except weekends lol  I always wonder who is going to be upset about what. 

I’m sick of getting no support from SARS.  SARS doesn’t want to assist us in giving them money and the clients doesn’t want us to do it either.  Where is the ‘win’ in this situation?

I wonder if I just stopped working…….I don’t know how we’d survive and I’d probably kick my ass for doing it but just to wake up for a while and not have to worry about who is going to be p!ssed off today, would be nice.

I don’t get to spend proper time with the kids.  Homework gets done while I’m working.  preferably with as little talk as possible and if we need to talk, then at least speak softly.  Not proper that.  Not at all.

I wish I could say that I’ll feel better tomorrow but it’s not been better for so long.

I’m g@tvol now.  Of rude people.  People not taking responsibility.  Worrying that a tiny mistake can cost a client millions.  Sick of trying to get things done before a submission date, when the clients are keeping me up.  Sick of it.  Sick of having to go to work when I’m feeling sick and would / should rather be in bed. 

Sick of having little patience with my kids.  Mostly because I’m stressed at work. 

Okay, okay.  I’m done complaining. 

I have a job.  A good income.  I drive a smart car and have 3 happy, healthy boys.  That’s what really counts right?


Work

Things I want in my life right now:

  • Coffee lol So short-term I am
  • New clothes
  • Money to buy said clothes
  • To be a Stay-at-home-mom
  • Not possible if I want the said clothes
  • Not to worry
    • About money
    • Work
    • Time

This is what worries me mainly.  Not being able to spend enough time with my kids.  Having to rush homework.  Not spending enough time with Quintus when he studies even though he is doing so well this year.  Constantly feeling stressed.  I wake up stressed.  I go to sleep stressed.  I feel like somewhere, something has to give.

Nothing can change though.  I need to work for us to survive.  Thereby I stress more at work and also at home. 

Oh where’s the good old days when men worked and woman were “kaalvoet en pregnant in die kombuis?”

Those days were simpler.  Though I don’t think I would have liked not having the option to work.  I just now want the option NOT to work!


Have – "have" no blooming idea!

As with most government departments, SARS drives us insane.

Right from the “You are number 52 in line”, to the person who answers the phone and can’t help you.

Trying to register a taxpayer, submit documents, pay tax ….. every single possible thing is made near impossible. 

Some days we are so frustrated with the whole system, that we want to scream. 

Other days we just point and laugh.

SARS


Telemarketing

I’m always nice to telemarketing consultants.  Even if they phone at the most inconvenient time.  I think it’s a horrible job to do and it can’t be nice when 99% of the people you phone are horrible to you.

However, today I was not that friendly.  The woman asked me what my occupation is and I said Accountant.

She said that all the accountants she knows, are either boring or alcoholics.

Right ….. whatever it is that she was selling, I was clearly not interested.


My office

“I think the best part of my job is that my chair spins”

Not really.  I love where I work.  I love that I work with my dad.  I love that we never ever get upset with each other.  I love being my own boss. 

“I tried to call in sick to work today, but I won’t answer the phone.”

I don’t think I could go back into the corporate world again.  This past August, I’ve been here for 10 years!  TEN years!  Doesn’t feel like it.

We have an interesting set-up and some things just make me smile.

Like the fact that my dad and I mostly phone each other, when we have a door between our offices.

Or that once we have finished our conversation, we say “goodbye”, like we won’t see each other again in the next 10 minutes or talk soon.

It’s sweet that Bella (my dog) has been in the office ever since we got her 2 years ago and people now ask where she is when they can’t hear her snore.

It’s fun and frustrating at the same time when my kids come into the office, kind of like a tornado. 

Mmm….I can Facebook and twitter and read blogs whenever I have time.  No-one giving me a small block on certain pages.

“I think Facebook is a grownups way of having imaginary friends.”


Dear S@rs

Dear S@rs

I do appreciate that you audit taxpayers, especially the non-compliant, non-paying taxpayers.  I appreciate that you try to get as many of the income earning individuals to pay their taxes.  I especially love it when you get someone who has never paid taxes, even though they live in mansions.  I don’t like paying their taxes for them.

However, it serious frustrates me when you audit an 80 year old woman because she withdrew R50 000 from her very own investment.  When I let you know it’s for personal use and you want detail, I feel like splitting up into bra’s and panties and other womanly expenses.

She doesn’t have to explain R50 000 to you.  Regardless what she did with it.  It’s not taxable.  No donations tax.  Niks.  Nothing. Nada.

Please spend your time, money and resources on something more valid.

Unfriendly regards

The Accountant


Technology

Since I’m an Accountant, most of the people I work with have e-mail, internet, cell phone…..basic stuff.  I mean, that’s what you need to run a business so most of my clients do.

This afternoon, I had an older client (younger than my dad though) who doesn’t own a cell phone!!! and doesn’t have e-mail.  Okay then.  He was actually quite serious as to why he doesn’t want one.

According to him he doesn’t need it, since he grew up without e-mail and cell phone, so why now?

Well….years ago there were no cars but people sure don’t walk a lot…..and since he now drives a big 4 x 4, I’m sure he is glad people didn’t stick to “I didn’t have it as a child and don’t need it now” mentality.

Of course I can’t live without internet, e-mail and my cell phone!


Real job

My husband just ticked me off in a big way. He organized for my bakkie to go in for a service. Now while I do appreciate him making the appointment, I would have appreciated it if he just asked me if it suited me.

This is not why I’m upset though. He informed me that the bakkie must be at the garage by 7:30. I told him that it won’t be possible, since I drop the boys off at school.   I asked him (jokingly) if he won’t take the bakkie and he said that he can’t because he has a real job…..!!!!!

Seriously??!!!!! I asked him how he could say that and his reply was that I have an office job.

I have an office job.  Where I fit in 8 hours of work into less than that, so that I can also be a pretty good Mom to our children.  I earn …. no let’s not go there.

Point being, that there is nothing like “not a proper job” just because I’m sitting behind a desk!

URGH …. men


No reception

We have really bad cell phone reception at work.  This is very frustrating, actually embarrassing so.  Not very professional when you can’t hear a word the client is saying. 

We normally have to run outside and talk while standing in the middle of the road.

At least we don’t have to climb a pole like this guy though!

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