It’s been a while since I last actually wrote a blog on the day it goes out. Since coming back from India, I’ve had so many back up blogs that it almost felt like a bit of a holiday not blogging on here on a weekly basis! Yesterday, I went to my daughter’s first Sports Day. My eldest daughter is so competitive that I think I had knots in my stomach wondering how she would react if she failed. She was fine as long as she got her medal at the end (for taking part). I was worrying for no reason. Then I was worried about the mum’s race. I hate running. Sports Day brings back so many miserable memories of coming last in running but it was ok yesterday. I managed to keep up with the other mums, which was all I really wanted. The dad’s on the other hand were really competitive!
In other news, I am now on a hunt for a nursery near where we live. The youngest will be finishing nursery at the end of July and then from September, I want to start her in nursery nearby. There are lots of nurseries to choose from and we’ve been to see 3 so far. The first one was just one room for all kids from 2-5. I wasn’t so keen on that. The second one was walking distance but in the opposite direction to the school, it had lovely facilities and lovely staff but I didn’t really get a feeling for it. The third one is also good and the one we are most likely to go with. They seem to have things in place to encourage learning and progress. However, there is so much traffic around there and parking will be a nightmare. Also, the playground is on the roof! It is secure obviously but part of me feels a bit scared about it. There are more nurseries we can look at but it’s only for a year so we don’t want it to be too far away really.
Another positive thing that has happened recently was that I sent in an amended tax return for one client, mainly because she had put all the figures in the wrong boxes and because she had originally completed it herself, there were no accounts to check. When I re did it, it seemed like she had missed out a lot of expenses. Anyway, I sent it in (although the process of sending it in had changed since I last did anything like this so it took me two attempts before I got all the information HMRC needed in the format they needed it in) and then didn’t really expect anything. I didn’t even chase it as she was on a payment plan which was based on the lower amended figures that they hadn’t seen yet. A few days ago, I received a phone call from the client saying she had received a refund and was so grateful for it and it had come at the right time. It’s such a good feeling when I do something like this. The only problem about this now is that I haven’t invoiced her for it yet. I will do eventually. Maybe I will include it when I do this year’s tax return because I do know she is struggling for money having recently changed careers. I will because I have to but I keep changing my mind as to how much to charge her as I feel sorry for her.
I hate timesheets! For most of my working life I’ve been using timesheets that you’d think by now, I’d be immune to them. Being self-employed means I have to account for every hour (minute even) that I work before I get paid. I completely understand the justification of it and in theory it really is a good idea but for some reason, I still hate doing them.
At the moment, there are some days when I do a bit of work and then my daughter needs the toilet (we are in the midst of toilet training and so I drop everything when she says she needs to go!), I take her, come back and something else has popped up so I get distracted and start doing that as it seems small and I think I can do it quickly. But then, before you know it, the whole day has gone and I’ve not recorded what I have done and how long it has taken me except that I know I’ve been working all day.
On days like that, the best thing to do would be to try and remember everything and write it down while I still remember. Obviously, I don’t! I faff around and think I’ll write it up tomorrow because I won’t forget. I’ve tried using a phone app, pen and paper and spreadsheets. Nothing seems to tempt me into writing up my timesheet. Considering that I like writing so much, you’d think I’d love this opportunity to write down every last detail of what I’ve done in the day.
In the end, I check the emails I’ve sent on those days to recall what I did, I check the audit function of the accounting packages I use and I get there. I bet if it was called something else, I’d happily sit there and complete it. Or maybe it was because I was attempting to work from my mum’s house this week. I think I just need to get my mind around it and maybe call it a blog!
This year so far has been like a rollercoaster ride. I can’t believe it’s already July. It started off nice and chilled and then things just kept happening this year and I feel like I’m always playing catch up. ‘Once that’s done I’ll be able to relax’.
It’s great working from home. I have the flexibility to work more or less whenever I want but this flexibility also means that some weeks it feels like all I’m doing is working. Sometimes the kids are in the background wanting things, playing with things and sometimes they’re not. I want to spend time with them and do stuff with them but there’s always something else I need to do. With my granddad being ill, I’ve been driving up and down (2 hour round trip) to go and visit him especially with his stay overs at the hospital. But luckily everything seems good with him at the moment.
My older daughter’s school is still not totally sorted. We’ve got a back-up school with a private school but we’re still waiting to see what will happen with the appeal. Then from September things will change again. I don’t know if it will be easier or worse with the older one being at school.
Also, with work, I picked up more sub contracts (paying for private school has been playing on my mind). They seem to be a lot easier than looking for work for myself which is another issue, possibly for another blog! But even with work, it got a bit too much so I stopped one subcontract because I can’t physically do all the work and spend time with the kids. However, even though I’ve dropped one, I still feel like I don’t have enough time but then when I come to do my timesheet at the end of the day, I have no idea where my time has gone.
It’s good to be busy but I don’t think I’m getting the balance right. I don’t mind working late some nights but I don’t really want to do it all the time. Also working late has caused me to make some mistakes at work and I don’t want to lose the work I do have as there doesn’t seem to be much more part time, flexible work. And somehow, I still need to finish toilet training my younger daughter.
I’ve got some time off booked now. I’m hoping that I can spend at least some of this time to relax and catch up on stuff and hopefully get more organised and not feel so rushed all the time. And to think that at the beginning of this year, I had planned for a nice, almost relaxing year with a little of bit of work to keep me busy and I planned to do lots of exercise and eat healthily. Most of that’s all out of the window!
Some days I have lots of time and other times I don’t feel I have enough time in the day to do everything. It is usually when I don’t have enough time to do everything I start to question everything that I do. It’s amazing how much of my life, is so driven by money. Especially now that we have more or less decided that our oldest daughter is going to private school for at least 2 years. We need the money now but in order to earn enough money, I feel like I’m constantly working. But because I’m self employed I have to keep a timesheet and it almost doesn’t seem worth it. I just feel like a busy fool!
A few weeks before going on holiday I accepted another work contract but ever since then, I am working til late into the night and I don’t seem to have time for my kids which was the main reason for working from home. I feel like I’ve almost defeated the purpose of working from home. I think maybe my charge out rate is not that much so I don’t even feel that working all these stupid hours is worth it. It would be so much better to work for someone else doing part time hours and then once work is finished that’s the end. No late nights working! Surely a salary would be better than an hourly rate.
Once I’ve finished the work I’ve accepted for the third contract, I am thinking of saying no to more work and maybe even consider asking for an increase for my other 2 contracts. On top of that with my grand parents being ill, I have also offered to help out when I can for my mum which is nothing really because I don’t really live that close and they have only asked for my help once so far. But I like to be available in case they do ask. I want to help.
With all this going on I really start to question what is the point of doing anything? What is the reason for being here? And surely you should do stuff to make you happy. But what makes me happy? If can stay awake long enough to think of answers to all these questions, maybe I can change my life a bit.
I’m writing this blog listening to my kids emptying out another box of toys and creating more mess and havoc for me to clean up! Here’s my confused quote for the weekend:
“Eventually, all the pieces fall into place. Until then, laugh at the confusion, live for the moment and know that everything happens for a reason…” – Albert Schweitzer
What I forgot to mention in the first post is how I came about blogging. For us geeky accountants, there is a specialist accounting website called AccountingWEB. I posted several blogs on there about how hard it was to be a good mum and still be an accountant and whether I wanted to work, stay at home, work full time, part time, for someone, for myself and all my whingeing got me noticed and promoted to a featured blogger!
When I first started blogging, I called myself novice blogger because I had no idea what I was doing. To be honest, I still don’t which is why I’m doing this blogging 101. When I got promoted to feature blogger on AccountingWEB, I got asked if I wanted to change my blog title and add a picture which I excitedly did.
However, as it’s an accounting website, I feel guilty blogging too much mummy stuff. It just doesn’t seem right and so I came over to here so I could blog about anything I wanted.
For ages I remained anonymous (I think) but with a little slip here and there, I don’t think I am anymore and I’m not sure if I mind too much. However, I still don’t have the guts to share my blog links on Facebook or Twitter or any social media websites.
I’ve been blogging for a while but I’m not very consistent. With it being a new year, I’ve decided to start again and see if I can come up with a topic to blog about.
If you have seen other posts on this blog, I’m a mum, an accountant and then there’s a section which doesn’t fit in to those categories. With it being the new year, I’ve also decided that I want to do another million and one things.
So firstly, I’ve been going Bikram yoga for a while and I’ve decided that I want to learn all the I can about each of the 26 postures we do. Not necessarily be able to do them perfectly but learn why we do each one and is benefits.
Secondly, I’m reading a book about wine and it’s so interesting and it makes me want to learn about wine. I’ve not really got a plan for that except read the book and do some of the things it asks you to do.
Thirdly, eat healthily and cook, juice, exercise more.
Fourthly, spend more quality time with my daughters. Play with them, read, do exercise, go out and teach them stuff.
Finally, and the most important, is to keep on top of tax and accounts and get up to speed on that and as I’m working for myself, get more clients.
So, this seems to have just turned into a new years resolutions list and it’s a day late so not a good start but I’m going to keep going and hopefully find something good to talk about (well blog about!).