Tax Time

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Get it right.

Whatever you do, if you’re in a rush for the money, don’t screw it up. The amendment for an incorrectly filled in Tax Return is an 8 week waiting period.

You also do not want to be audited. This is a lot of time and effort.

Don’t lie, but do recall -everything- that you might want to claim on. Washed your clothes twice a week? They were mainly work clothes? That’s a dollar per load. Two dollars a week, one hundred and four dollars per year. You ironed them as well? Add some more on top.

Did you fix your car? Do you need your car to get to work? Claim it.

Those shoes you bought, did you ever wear them to work? Claim it.

Do you wear casual clothes to work? If yes, every single item of casual clothing you buy can be claimed as a work expense.

Did you take the train to work? If yes, you can claim public transport travel as a deduction.

Did you drive? Not only is maintenance claimable, petrol is too.

Did you buy a computer that directly helps you do your work at home? Claim it.

Did you need a phone to keep in contact with your boss or contractors? Claim it.

If you are unsure about all you can claim, talk to an accountant, it’s in their best interest to help you get back the largest possible refund that they can. You will miss things that they’ll catch. They won’t make mistakes like you can.

Also, do not miss a year. It becomes too complicated, the processes difficulty increases exponentially.

Again, do not lie. It’s not worth the fine.

Keep every single receipt you ever purchase for anything. Show them to your accountant, you never know- You might be able to claim on it.

Enjoy the refund!

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Chorely not

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If you’ve brought it up then you most likely know what being universally hated feels like. Your entire house probably let out a collective “Ughhhh, really?”.

Regardless whether you are a mum in a bought house with children, a renter who likes to keep their place neat and tidy, or a one-of-a-kind share accommodation tenant who wants a clean house, you know what I mean already.

You can’t lightly step around the issue of living in a deli of dirt, a grotto of grot, a house of …. well you get the picture. Someone in the house is going to disagree about there being a method of organising the cleaning duties. Chances are that someone is the same someone who had that mexican stand-off with you about taking the garbage out for so long that flies started making your house a regular stop in point before the tip.

This isn’t going to be an easy step and you’re most likely going to be initially (or permanently) disliked. So is there anyway to make things a little more bearable?

Yes. But only a few.

Chore Wheel. Randomise it. With a Chore Wheel it doesn’t seem like you’re setting out a bunch of rules for people to follow and it’s entirely random who does what on what day. There may even be weeks where one individual escapes the chore wheel entirely. That being said, however, some weeks they might find themselves on it every single day.

Chore Dart Board. Every house member throws a dart for the day, that day that person is doing that chore. This psychologically shifts the blame off of you. If you throw a dart and it hits a chore, you feel like it was your poor decision to throw the dart in that way. Change it up a little with bonuses E.g: I.O.U chores, Chore Free Day or a prize of some sort. Make it a game.

Chore Sheet. It’s probably the most controlling option, but things get done. Plus when someone isn’t home- they pick up the slack the next day as they got to skip. There’s a variety of downloadable chore sheets from the Microsoft Office program. Alternatively you can find one here and here.

If you’re a mother, the chore dart board and chore wheel are probably the best options. As children can see it like a sort of game. If you are in a share house or rental accommodation with a friend then it’s likely that you’re mature enough to have a conversation and agree to fair terms on the Chore Sheet.

The cleaning has to be done and one person shouldn’t be stuck with it all regardless of accommodation type.

In our house, we have a chore sheet (which hasn’t been followed once since it’s introduction)- however we have dealt with a Housemate War that somewhat hindered the shared duties.

Good luck with whichever deadly avenue you choose to wander down!

Quick Healthy Cheap Spaghetti

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Quick Healthy Cheap Spaghetti
Serves:
4 for two nights
Cooking Time:
1/2 an hour
Prep Time:
15 minutes
Note:
You can get all the below ingredients at Aldi for about 20 dollars.

Ingredients

1 zucchini
2 cloves of garlic
1 onion
1 carrot
5 cherry tomatoes
1 Roma tomato
2 handfuls of spinach
1 handful of mushroom
7-800 grams of mince-Lean or premium (adjust according to Per Person numbers)
2 glasses of pasta sauce (we also found Aldi’s Pasta bake sauce works brilliantly and tastes delicious)
1 loaf of garlic bread

Method

  • Pre chop and dice all your vegetables, separate into three bowls (one bowl for spinach and cherry tomatoes/Roma tomato and mushroom, the second bowl for carrot, zucchini and garlic, the third for onion). The bowls (while making more dishes) make it easier to know what to add next.
  • Set your hot plate to high and grab a large saucepan (It should be big enough that when the sauce is added you have about a 5-7 cm layer of meat and sauce.)
  • Spray the saucepan with the cooking spray or use olive oil to coat the base.
  • Add the mince and cook until almost browned- Separate it with a spatula or slotted turner to ensure it cooks through.
  • Add onion and garlic and mushroom, cook until almost browned.
  • Add the bowl of carrot, zucchini and cook for another 3-4 minutes.
  • Add the tomato/spinach bowl and cook until the spinach shrinks and wilts.
  • When all ingredients have been mixed in and are cooked off, add the two jars of pasta sauce (rinse with 1/4 cup water to get all the sauce and add a little more volume to end result).
  • After ten minutes on medium heat, add some mixed herbs, a little salt, or another seasoning of your choice to flavour.
  • Place Garlic bread wrapped in foil into oven, cook for ten minutes, unwrap foil and cook for another 5.
  • When garlic bread is cooked through, remove spaghetti from heat and serve into bowls.
  • The remainder can be placed in Tupperware and either kept cold or frozen for up to 2-4 weeks.
  • You can use parmesan cheese on top to add further flavour.
  • Top with grated cheese to add a thick texture to the spaghetti as well as extra flavour (we prefer tasty).

This recipe is perfect when you are running low on funds and time. It can be made in larger quantities and split into Tupperware to feed a family of four for about a week. You will need a stock pot and the ability to adjust the ingredients accordingly. This is a family favourite in our household. You may struggle to get kids or teenagers to accept all the vegetables.

Enjoy