Sunday, October 08, 2006


It was a glorious day, sunny and cool, with that crisp autumn feeling. After Morning Offering Jim roasted a turkey, finishing out the menu which Gary had already prepared the rest of. Then Jim took off for an errand run, coming home with our fast food lunch treat.

I spent the morning working on the books for Jim’s Lawn Service. As I worked, I found that our previous bookkeeper had omitted to write down on our paper ledger various expenses and deposits that had come in by electronic fund transfers. One by one, I tracked them down. I finally removed all the checkmarks from the last JLS statement from the bank and added in to QuickBooks several big numbers which were missing. When I re-reconciled the bank account, it worked out to the penny. That was a nice way to go to lunch!

Jim went out to work in the yard after lunch and I went back to QuickBooks. After I finished recording all the receipts and entered the bills for both the house account and for L/L Research, I went back to the house banking. The house ledger was in the same incomplete state as the JLS ledger had been. By bath time I had found all the vague references in the ledger, completed the ledger and gotten a solid total in the paper ledger. It lacks $700.00 and change of balancing with the QuickBooks ledger, but given the odd way things have and have NOT been recorded, I will expect to tackle that tomorrow or Monday and find the missing puzzle pieces.

From working as much as I did, I know that the L/L Research ledger is in the same incomplete shape. So now that I have all the bills paid and there are no emergencies to respond to, I can see if I can solve these last two mysteries. I stand amazed at the damage an overwhelmed bookkeeper can do to a set of perfectly sound books in only one month. I thanked Lynn for all her hard work and integrity at staying with the job when she really wanted to leave, once she got full time work. And I told her that I would call her if I needed her. I hope not to need her.

We have ads for a QuickBooks expert in two papers, and hopefully we shall soon find a good bookkeeper again. Meanwhile I have stepped up to the plate on this one, as Gary and Jim have zero competence in the QB software whereas I have a minimal ability to work the software – enough to run the JLS statements and do what we need to do. I am undoubtedly making errors in the work. However all that QB is for is tax accounting. If I just enter all the data, the expert at our tax accountant’s office can work it out at tax time. So I shall do my very best and hope not to upscrew things too badly.

It has been a good exercise in right livelihood for me. I have gotten good and spoiled up here in my bower office, working on creative projects. The second-floor location is symbolic, because I rise above the first-floor level of the administrative and financial work that undergirds my creative efforts. Even my view is different, as I can see sky and sunshine, whereas in the downstairs office, the front porch blocks direct sun and the room is less full of light than up here. So it is satisfying to pay my dues with doing the books. It is like Gandhi’s wife cleaning the bathroom. Do you know that story? She was high-born and never had done housework. However when Gandhi formed a community, everyone shared the chores alike.

She came to her husband and said, “You know I have never worked at cleaning bathrooms. Do you mean to suggest that I should do so now?”

Gandhi replied, “Of course, not, my beloved wife. I would never shame you. I will be glad to place you in a pleasant place where you will have servants. However, that place will not be here, with me.

Gandhi’s wife, from then on, cleaned the bathrooms when it was her turn.

So it is my turn on the old QuickBooks. I got a nice note from a guy who reads my UPI articles and he promised help if I get stuck! Isn’t that a heart-opener?

Jim watched the Texas-Oklahoma game in the afternoon between bouts of very effective yard work, clearing more branches, weeding and weed-eating all the walks and plantings. After our bath and an early supper, we settled down with the Nebraska game, which I did not actually watch – I was reading an old Nero Wolfe mystery novel, patting Sedgie and sharing the moment.

I used to try too hard to participate in sports watching, back in the ‘60s during my first, failed marriage. I took football on as though it were a course of study and I learned all I could. I was trying to “be a good wife”. Whatever my success at behaving well, my football watching made neither my then-husband or myself happy.

Forty years later I have found that being a good wife is being glad to see your husband happy watching football while you share the time with him and discreetly enjoy alternative entertainment. So I read and he watched until halftime, when we offered the Gaia Meditation, with Gary offering the prayer. Then Jim and I came upstairs, bringing Sedgie with us, as he is very shaky on his feet now, and snuggled with him and the other kitties until well after midnight, enjoying our leisure time. I will sleep under a blanket tonight for the first time since last March or so!