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Inventory


I hate inventory.  I really, really, really hate inventory.  This is the one and only time of the year that a business has to count everything.  It's not just for grins and giggles either.  It is important to count everything.  Our company books require it.  The tax man requires it.  It is what leads me to the amount of money I need to pay for use tax.  Sales tax falls easily out of my software but use tax requires that someone keep track through the year or tally it at the end of the year.  It also verifies that what we have listed on the website is correct.  And our sales and use taxes are due by January 20th so there is a time crunch.  Did I make it clear that I hate inventory?

Some of the things we have here are easy to count.  Like the books on the shelf, the bottles of hand cream on the shelf, and pretty much anything that is stacked in nice consistent piles.  The problem, of course, is that so little in my life is nicely stacked.  We have fiber in the form of braids and bags strewn all over the studio.  Oh, yeah.  Don't forget all the stuff that is stashed up on the shelf in the loft.  Or in those tubs under the tables.

Peggy was out here on Sunday to help count things.  We managed to get quite a bit done but it always results in notes scratched all over the inventory sheets in some strange hieroglyphics.  I'm sure if I loved the process it would all be so much easier.

Well, that may just happen.  On Tuesday my daughter came out to help me with the inventory.  She is a full fledged nurse now but she spent some 15 years learning all about bookkeeping and accounting.  She started off being that young sweet face that answers the phones and welcomes clients into the accounting office and ended up doing much of the number crunching that doesn't need to be done by the CPA's.  She really knows her debits and credits.  And she is a whiz at anything remotely similar to a spreadsheet.  Excel is her friend.

We started off the morning with "Well, Mom. You know there are lots of different ways to do this and I bet we can find a better way."  and ended up with "OK.  I see how your mind works.  The way you are doing this is probably the best choice."  That's great.  Now I don't have to learn a whole new system.

What became more and more obvious as we worked through the day, is that if I knew a bit more accounting and a lot more Excel, the entire process would be so much easier.  Also, by waiting until the end of the year, I need to remember everything we did all year long.  It all drives me crazy.

So the new rules are.... I will update the inventory at the end of each month when I balance the checkbook.  I will call my daughter if I can't remember how to add the notes, update the amounts, or any of the other things she showed me how to do.  I will never wait an entire year to do this again.

Sounds like a great plan.  Right now I'm in inventory hell trying to get the 2018 final inventory correct so I can start 2019 with a clean slate.  It's a great plan.  We will see how well I can follow the new rules.