#195. Create an Excel Spreadsheet for Taxes. Ugh.

Just looking at this empty spreadsheet gives me the runs. 
Just looking at this empty spreadsheet gives me the runs.

I can turn the worst photo ever taken of you into a masterpiece worthy of an OkCupid profile pic. Photoshop is my friend and has been for over a decade. Excel, on the other hand, can suck it.

Where to even begin?! I’ve tried using this program numerous times:


Once, when working on our work Christmas card list, I had about 200 broken down by name/street/city & state/zip code… and somehow POOF! the names got rearranged into alphabetical order and the street addresses stayed the same. Redo city! Not cool, Excel!

Accounting Purposes

Why can’t I even get the SUM thingie to function properly?! And why are A14 and C34 and B1 all, inexplicably, in the same equation?!

Tracking Big Projects

For example, I recently started contacting a huge list of women for an upcoming Hey Eleanor post. I made an Excel spreadsheet with their names, email addresses, when I sent them and email and if they responded. It feels like I’m being more organized and adult-y when I do these in Excel… and yet, I still prefer the pen & paper, old fashioned way. I should really just try Evernote, right?

At any rate, I am always effing stuff up when Excel gets involved. But two weeks ago, when the beyonce and I finally sat down to figure out our taxes, he gave ME the task of tracking our duplex’s expenses via Excel. Wanna know why? Because I really didn’t want to do it. I don’t even know how to cut and paste, let alone create [simple] equations that’ll automatically calculate our maintenance expenses, divided by two (because we only rent half of the house), divided by two again (because, technically, we’re splitting expenses 50/50 ’til we’re married). Oh man, just writing that made my brain hurt!

I have no patience for things of this kind, so with every tiny hiccup came a sigh… then a swear. Sometimes, I’d get up from the table and pace around for a bit until I calmed down. Luckily, Josh is patient with me and showed me some easy fixes to my stupid mistakes. In about an hour, we’d created a detailed document chronicling all of our expenses.

I’m not going to say it was painless (I mean, we ARE talking taxes here!), but it wasn’t so bad. And at least we have a spreadsheet already set up so we can just plug in number for next year.

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