When your Dad is Head of the Maths Department at your secondary school, there is a heavy weight of expectation on your shoulders whether you like it or not.
My younger sister and I were both spectacularly appalling at Maths. It didn’t come naturally at all, and our Dad spent most of his school holidays giving us extra tuition, coaching us through past papers and working his socks off to get us through our exams.
The trouble was at the age of 13, faced with the Common Entrance exam to Rydal Senior School, I was so au-fait with past papers that I soared through the exam and came in the top 3 of my year. Great celebrations! Now you might think this was a top result but it had far reaching consequences!
It meant, of course, that I was streamed into the A set at the Senior School. The only benefit was that my poor Dad didn’t have the indignity of trying to teach me. The big problem was that I went from top to bottom in the first lesson, and struggled during with every lesson after that.
With a lot of hard work I achieved a pass in my O’Level and that’s as far as my Maths was destined to ever go.
Starting my own business in 2014, I knew early on that I would come unstuck with the numbers. It’s funny how they tell you on the business start-up course that accounts has nothing to do with maths. This is clearly not true, and they certainly didn’t figure on trying to teach someone who has not even the slightest sense of numbers!
What a joy it was at the Network She conference in 2015 when the lovely ladies of Foremans LLP, Chester, came by my cake stall. They enjoyed several cupcakes (each), told me about their accountancy services and a few weeks later I was signed up.
The first job was to get my Self Assessment Tax Return done for the year. Now there’s many tutorials out there on YouTube, many leaflets to help you through the process and many business owners that will tell you it’s easy and you can do it yourself. Ho Ho! Let me tell you – I needed help!
I have a journey to Chester several times a month anyway for my Photography Academy so I figured a Chester based accountant would work fine. They are based on the Chester Business Park so access and parking couldn’t be easier.
The great news for me is that Foremans specialise in helping small businesses so the Cake Lady from Llandudno was just up their street. Alison made me feel welcome, she assigned me a lovely and very clever accountant Sarah to do the maths, and a very friendly and attentive account manager Jennifer to look after me. Jennifer is now Charlotte – and Charlotte is just as lovely.
I have total confidence that my year end accounts are in great hands. I think they like me because I bring them a lovely white lever arch file with all my receipts and invoices in order. It makes them smile a lot. Apparently some clients bring in a bin bag! Who knew?
So it’s February now, and they have just filed my second year of accounts with HMRC. Everyone is happy.
I hope they would like me just as much if I didn’t bring cupcakes to their office at tea-break time. But I guess I’ll never know.
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I’m Judith. I’ve been caking since 2012. I also love to write, photograph, travel, drink coffee and read books. This is my cake blog where you’ll find recipes, and baking tips and all my latest cake projects.
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