32850 US-43 STE B, THOMASVILLE, AL 36784 844-229-8936 GOLDENTAXRELIEF.COM A Time for Family WHAT I ’M GRATEFUL FOR THIS CHRISTMAS G o l d e n G a z e t t e DEC 2017
For my family, Christmas means a trip to the country. For the past 10 years or so, we’ve driven to my dad’s farm to spend the holiday with him and my siblings. On Christmas Eve, we roll out Dad’s 1928 John Deere, hitch a trailer to the back, and take the grandkids on a good old- fashioned hay ride. I’m glad to give my kids a sense of the rustic lifestyle I had growing up. Dad bought the farm in 1986. Of course, back then, it wasn’t all tractor rides and climbing on hay bales. I did just about every kind of work you can imagine needs doing on a farm. I mended fences, bush- hogged, baled hay, fixed equipment when it broke down, and yes, mucked out the stables. It was hard work, but rewarding. Still, I found myself drawn to the kind of work my mom was doing. I can still see her in my mind’s eye, green journal books spread across the kitchen table, mechanical calculator at her side. She’d gotten her associates degree in accounting and had worked as a bank teller before my older brother was born. Every month, Mom would take Dad’s loose bundle of receipts and pay stubs and make those numbers work. I was so impressed that, by the time I was 8 years old, I told my dad “You better start University of Alabama, and I’m gonna be an accountant! Bold thing to say in grade school, but I kept my word.” “You better start saving up, because I’m going to the
saving up, because I’m going to the University of Alabama, and I’m gonna be an accountant!” Bold thing to say in grade school, but I kept my word. My mom was a big inspiration who got me into the world of accounting, and having her to turn to if I ever needed help with my math homework was always a plus. When I was in college, personal computers began to revolutionize accounting. One Christmas break, I got Mom a copy of the very first edition of QuickBooks. I taught her how to use the program and how it could simplify her bookkeeping. She took to it quickly, and I felt proud to have been able to tutor her in something for once. I went on to get my undergraduate degree in accounting from U of A, and received my M.A. in taxation from Golden Gate University. While working in San Francisco, one of my coworkers got a flat tire and planned to call AAA. To my surprise, this city boy had never changed a tire before! Didn’t matter that I was in a suit and tie, I picked up a jack and a lug wrench and helped him out. Turns out my dad and his farm gave me some pretty darn useful skills, as well.
I came back to Alabama when Mom fell terminally ill. Saying goodbye was tough, but at least she’s in a better place than any of us. Now all I gotta worry about is making sure I get there when it’s my time! Sitting down for the big feast on Christmas, I look around at the family Mom and Dad built together. I’m thankful for how much they’ve given me. So many people go into accounting and tax advising for the money. I did it because I had a passion, fostered and supported by my parents. They raised me to be an Alabama farm boy who says what he does and does what he says. They taught
me more than just accounting
and basic “farming skills.” They taught me that a man’s word is his bond.
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