Birthdays and Tax Returns

The weekend before last my 15 month old grandson and I went to the Island to attend a gathering, arranged by one of mom’s wonderful neighbors, for her birthday. The turnout was impressive. Mom looked and felt terrific. If anyone were asked to guess her age, they would likely underestimate by at least 10 or 15 years. This is born out by a life time of snuggling up to the outdoors, being active and fabulous genes. She thoroughly enjoyed the company and seemed moved that so many had come to wish her well on her 80th birthday. 

The hostess took me aside to ask if I knew my dad’s ashes were in attendance. This was news to me. Mom had approached the hostess to ask if she could bring dad’s ashes, and, of course, the hostess was supportive, saying to mom that this would show dad that mom was OK. I was pleased mom did this, even if she didn’t tell me. 
I filed mom’s taxes yesterday. Afterwards, I called to let her know. She asked if she owed or was getting a refund. She’s getting a nice refund, but not 100% of her withholding, like in the last five years. I’ve learned not to spell out all of the details (medical is only deductible above 7.5% of AGI, you had $xxx withheld, you are now a ‘single filer,’ etc. She was thrilled. That’s what’s important.  

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