Death, Taxes, and Creativity

In Creativity, family, Thoughts by Brenda1 Comment

Well, last week we had our taxes prepared.  Before you all think we are way ahead of the game, I must explain: full time farmers have to file their taxes by the end of February.  The last couple years, I have made efforts to be more consistent throughout the year entering farm expenses into the computer program. Mike’s job is to come up with the income side of the equation.  When I am consistent throughout the year, at the end of the year, there is less stress.  But actually, there is still stress.  :-O  I digress…

Because I got A’s in Math in school, and also in General Business, that means I have the ability to figure out keeping farm books. Right?  I will agree that I have the intelligence to do so, but it takes more than that to do well.  Sometimes when I stumble across a job that is not in my area of giftedness, I will say something like, “This would be my job in hell.” There are many jobs on that list: bank teller, athletic director, real estate agent, insurance salesman, accountant, and more.  I’m thankful for the people that hold these jobs, as they are important jobs. We all need them.  But even if I can do math, I don’t keep figures in my mind.  I’ve learned that with my creative mind, it is counterproductive to deal with facts and figures, try to memorize things, to deal with constant interruption, and the list goes on.  For my mind to do its best work (in the creative realm), I need to shut out the rest of the world, and dive deep.  I feel like my productivity is a crescendo.  It starts slow, but it slowly gets faster and deeper and louder.  (Maybe more accurately, accelerando, contralto, and crescendo!)

So back to our taxes, I do the books (it is necessary), but it is not in the area of my best talents.  I think we all need to do jobs that don’t come easy to us. It is good for us. I had six years of piano lessons, but it never came so easy to me as it does to my mother and sister. But I still enjoyed it and learned a lot from it. When I approach this job of keeping books for our farm, I try to think of it like I did my homework in high school.  “Just get an A.”  I just approach this trying to do my best.

But back to the track of my mind on the day of our tax appointment… I was thinking.  Accountants can go through life without being creative, I’d guess, in theory.  But creative people can’t get through life without doing their taxes.  Fair?  Maybe not fair, but maybe a discussion starter.  What are your thoughts?  Do you consider yourself creative?  Or are your skills used in more practical ways?  Share your pros and cons of either side.

But now for the best part of our story.  Our accountant.  He is a treasure.  Donald is one of Mike’s relatives.  He has been doing Mike’s taxes (and then mine) for over 40 years.  He celebrated his 80th birthday last year and is every bit as sharp as he was back when I met him.  What a wonderful blessing.  Last year we had the honor of celebrating his and Mike’s birthdays together.  I enjoyed designing one of my fabric portraits of Donald and Arthella’s late son Mike, as a gift for them. We really enjoyed our visit.

So as I was thinking that accountants don’t have to be creative, I then thought about Donald…and how beautifully he plays the piano.  I guess he wouldn’t HAVE to be creative, but I’m glad he is.  And I think this means I need to also work with numbers.


(I’d like to add that this post was written in 2019 and for some reason did not get published.  I thought this was a good time of year to post it.  Last year we started having someone else do our taxes, but Donald is still moving forward, tickling the ivories and walking his dog regularly with Arthella. We enjoy having him in our family.)


  1. I liked it all, but especially your description of jobs you would never choose to have! 🙂 And it’s certainly agreed you are creative!

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