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Thursday, April 5, 2012

Guest Blogger Sherri: Tax is Wack!

Sherri shares with us her all-too-common story of losing credit for three parts previously earned due to the 18-Month Rolling Window. We think her perserverance and hopeful attitude will serve as an inspiration to all! Sherri has passed BEC, FAR, and AUD, and now embarks on the REG Exam preparation.

Hi Everyone.

Spring is finally here! I am soaking it all in.  In Austin, we have two seasons generally… hot and hotter!  My family and I have been enjoying the wonderful, warm weather by spending our evenings outside, trying to soak up the spring air and the sound of the chirping crickets, before the mosquitos and humidity arrive next month.

Actually, I started thinking last week that this isn’t just the Spring season, it’s also TAX season… blech.

I am one of those rare CPA hopefuls that despises tax… truly.  Every April 15th, I call on my favorite, long time CPA tax preparer, prepare a meticulously laid out file of W2’s, support for tax deductions, and receipts for business expenses, gift wrap it (kidding) and deliver the file to the doorstep of the tax  guru’s  office.    

The mere thought of doing my own taxes makes me cringe.  I have this phobia about it.  I feel like I am going to miss some miscellaneous deduction somewhere, or worse, calculate the amount due in error and incur the wrath of the Internal Revenue Service.

All of this likely explains my feeling about the REG portion of the CPA Exam, which is filled with a multiplicity of taxation topics to chew on.   Although I took the REG exam and passed it 2009, I feel a little intimidated at having to take the test again, without the 20% written portion to help push me to the passing mark.  This will be the first time I have taken REG using Roger CPA Review

The Roger CPA Review was the key ingredient to passing FAR and AUD for me.   I know that the REG exam, as scary as it is,  can be conquered by putting in the time and effort to ensure a passing grade.

At the end of February, I had a big decision to make regarding this next test.  Should I study for REG in March and April and try to get an attempt at the exam under my belt in May….. or should I rest up and take the exam, when I am fully prepared, in the third test window?  Obviously, if you’ve been reading my blog over the last month, I didn’t go with choice number one.

I’ve been getting ready for reams of meetings on business trips, traveling to New York and California, spending time with family and friends, and catching up on all of those little chores that I neglected when I was in the zone of studying.  It’s been a wonderful time away!

It’s almost time for me to get back in the zone though.  I’ve got one more trip for work, quarterly close, and some SEC reports to do, before I can dive into my last and final section of the CPA Exam… Regulation.

I’ve pulled the books out of the back of my closet.  I’ve looked at the course material outline and given some general thought as to how I want to approach slaying this next dragon. Over the next two weeks,  I’m going to set up specific targets for videos to watch, chapters to read and problems to work, for each and every day up until test day, on my Outlook calendar.  I am going to stay sane by building in a night off, once a week, into the schedule, where possible.  I’m going to set up sample tests for all of the questions in the Wiley test bank, by topic, until I have used up all of the available questions.

By April 20th, I will be done with all of the above and ready to get my game face on.  J

I’m thinking good thoughts for those of you CPA candidates that are swamped with tax season and still trying to manage to take time to study.    Repeat the mantra…. (especially as you pour that fifth cup of coffee, down that Mountain Dew or guzzle that energy drink)  “If it was easy, everyone would be able to do it!”

Focus on your goals.  Study.  Put in the homework hours to achieve those goals.  Pass the test.  YOU CAN DO IT!!!!

See you next week.

S

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