The Man (TM) and I did our taxes this weekend, which is a little late in the year for us. Usually, we do them as soon as all the tax documents come in because we get a huge refund. Last year, I think we had 7 grand in taxable income, and we got back a few thousand dollars as a refund, even though we didn't pay much of anything in taxes. Between the child tax credit, the education credit, earned income credit, and who knows what all, we end up rolling in the dough. Usually.
I don't know what the deal is with the tax code this year (and I'm searching the IRS's Web site trying to find out), but they apparently fixed that "extra credit" loophole. Which is to say, once you end up with enough credits to keep you from having to pay anything, you have to stop. And I learned another interesting about taxes: my freelance work counts as a "business," which is separate from "wages from employment" (which of course I don't have anymore). Anyway, it's not a normal source of income for personal income taxes, SO.... I ended up owing a thousand dollars on the six thousand I earned this way. Holy crud.
So the upshot of our interesting learning adventures of this weekend was that we're sucking wind. Just when we need the money, we're not getting much (although yes, we are getting some-- anybody with negative twenty-odd thousand in taxable income ought to get something). But we're still surviving. And that in itself is a miracle.