Challenge$

4/11/08 at 6:35 am | Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

About a month ago it looked like the Taterbed family had a chance to turn the corner financially: take care of a few expensive projects around the house AND make significant cuts in Mr. Mastercard’s fat underbelly. Well, we had a few gut-punches but are still keeping our heads above water.

I had heard rumors about a substantial bonus from my previous employer, since we worked for them last year prior to being bought out last October and they had a profitable year. The new company also promised to make up for the three months the old company would not pay. I kept hearing the number “15%” and made plans. What I didn’t realize was that my “low” pay grade only allowed 2/3 of that, apparently since I get overtime (which has been cut back over the last few years). I’m trying to keep a happy face about it, as we got enough to take down an old tree in the backyard (big $$) and have a little extra. It doesn’t seem right that a peer/coworker would get a higher pay grade than me. All the OT pay does is give me some incentive to answer the phone at 2 am.

The second punch came last week after I had filed taxes electronically. At first I was looking at having to pay a few hundred, which is not a big deal as I’d rather pay a little than give Uncle Sam a free loan. When I included our two foster children as dependents (legally able to do so since they lived with us all year), it turns out that we would get several thousand back due to child tax credits. That also bumped up the “tax rebate” we would be getting from $1500 to $2100.

The day after filing I got an e-mail saying that my return had been rejected since someone else had already claimed the two children. We checked with DSS and found out it was not the agency, and that we have a legal right to claim them. So now we have to file by paper and then wait around to see if we get any money back, or if this gets challenged and they want the adjusted payment with interest since they probably won’t work on it until early fall.

The last punch came on Saturday, when we found out Skybus had gone belly-up. We had planned on taking the kids to Chicago on their first flight ever in July, so Kristal purchased cheap fare tickets ($10!) as soon as they were released (as there were a limited number of them) and spent about $300. We ended up tacking on a few charges for reserved seating and flight insurance. I doubt the flight insurance has anything to do with the airline declaring bankruptcy, though, so we’re in line with thousands of others at the credit card company hoping for a refund. At least partial.

Now we have to decide how to take a 13 hour car ride with three knuckle-heads in the back seats, and it looks like the gas for the trip will be at least $300. It’s funny how things like this can have you examine your faith and trust in God. Funny. I am thankful He gives me the strength to rise up for these challenges.

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