While driving down the valley, I was struck by the variety of shapes, colors, and textures in the surrounding landscape and unbidden, my long-term interest in quilt making sprang to mind.
The making of quilts began as a “thrift” craft hundreds of years ago. Odd scraps of fabric left over from making clothing, empty sacks from flour and feed, and salvageable parts of worn out household items were sewn together to form warm bedding. In addition to being functional, many of these quilts were created with pride, meticulous stitching, and a strong artistic sensibility.
In some ways, the preparation of tax returns is not unlike the making of quilts. The process may start with planning prior to year end, then the gathering of “materials”, information that is the income and deductible expenses for the year. These materials are then assembled to create a product that can be as varied as quilts. A workmanlike effort that gets the job done (i.e., the return filed) is the equivalent of a humble nine-patch quilt that keeps one warm.
Additional time, thought, and effort will produce a return that, while perhaps not as spectacular as some heirloom quilts, may not only result in a lower tax, but is also less likely to attract inquiries from the taxing authorities.
All of which brings to mind an old proverb: “A stitch in time saves nine”.