Categorized | Jewish, Rowling~Sheryl

‘Passover Fairy’ answers some Money Maven-type questions

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By Sheryl L. Rowling

Sheryl Rowling

SAN DIEGO –As usual, the Money Maven needs to take a break for “tax season.”  Luckily, the Passover Fairy has agreed to answer your questions.  The Money Maven will return next time!

Dear Passover Fairy,

I’m trying to save money.  Passover food is so expensive!  Nobody even likes to eat matzo!  How can I cut down on costs?

Prudently, Polly


Dear Polly,

If your family really doesn’t like matzo, just buy one little box for the Seder.  Since they won’t eat it anyway, you can also be creative with cardboard!  They won’t know the difference!


Dear Passover Fairy,

My Mom’s matzo balls are like little balls of rubber!  I know it’s not good to waste food, but isn’t there something I can do with those besides eat them?!

Appreciatively, Avi


Dear Avi,

I have found that the best use for rubber matzo balls is as practice balls on the putting green.  When they lose their roll, you can leave them for the birds!


Dear Passover Fairy,

I’ve put off doing my taxes and now Passover is almost here.  I don’t have time for both!  What can I do?

Last-minutely, Leslie


Dear Leslie,

It would be a shonda to put off Passover.  Better you should put off Uncle Sam!  You can submit an automatic extension of time to file your tax return.  If you do this by April 17th, you’ll have until October 15th to file.  Use form 4868, but be careful!  If you owe money, you still need to pay by April 17th!


Dear Passover Fairy,

I’ve decided to finally replace my Maxwell House Haggadahs.  Can I donate them and get a tax deduction?

Discretely, Dan


Dear Dan,

Sorry, you can’t claim a tax deduction for the Haggadahs.  First, whatever you donate has to be in good condition – and I bet your Haggadahs have stains from wine and charoseth!  Second, you can only deduct the lesser of their value or what you paid.  The used Haggadahs are worth bupkes and I know you go them for free at the grocery stored!   Just give them away as a mitzvah!


Dear Passover Fairy,

I know that you’re the Passover Fairy and not the Money Maven.  But, can you give me just one tip on how to save money on my taxes?

Methodically, Melvin


Dear Melvin,

I would recommend that you carefully claim every deduction you’re entitled to.  Here are some often forgotten write-offs:  mileage to and from the doctor’s office, alternative health care costs such as chiropractic, charitable mileage, financial planning fees, safe deposit boxes, deductible portion of auto license fees, investment management fees, tax preparation fees, professional education costs, and temple dues!  If you want to be sure, you might want to hire a maven!


Happy Passover from the Passover Fairy (and the Money Maven)!


Sheryl L. Rowling, CPA/PFS,  has been providing tax, financial planning and investment advice for over 30 years, since 1979. Contact her at [email protected].



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