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A Day in the Life of Sheila Taylor-Clark

Sheila and her husband Nate live in Lewisville with their 3-year-old daughter McKenzie. Nate works as a probation officer in Dallas County, while Sheila is a CPA and owns a tax practice, Sheila P. Taylor CPA. Sheila is also a breast cancer survivor and volunteers with The Junior League of Dallas and The Bridge Breast Network of Dallas.

5AM Daddy gets up to head to the gym and is immediately confronted by a sleepy 3-year-old wanting milk. I hear the discussion but am trying really hard to keep my eyes shut and tune it all out so I can continue to sleep. I pull McKenzie in bed with me after she drinks her milk so she can go back to sleep too.

6:30AM McKenzie slips out of bed to watch Daddy brush his teeth and follow him around the house until he leaves for work. Again, I try to keep my eyes closed tight.

6:45AM McKenzie hears my alarm go off and comes in to wake me with a kiss, or to tell me that her tattoo from the night before has washed off, or to tell me she loves Mommy, or to tell me she wants to go to work with Daddy. I wake up and spring into action – gotta get her off to school.

7AM Personal hygiene activities completed; it’s time to help McKenzie get dressed and comb hair. We also say goodbye to Daddy, who has a long commute ahead of him.

7:30AM Yes, I realize it takes me a long time to get McKenzie ready, but 10 minutes of it is telling her she can’t wear the purple tutu because I have already dressed her in the pink one. Her ballet lesson is today, and she wants to make sure her look is “perfect.” I prepare breakfast for McKenzie (today it’s scrambled eggs and fruit), who picks at it but manages to get a forkful or two in between watching Sprouts or the Disney Channel. I check my calendar for the day and read and return a few client emails.

8:05AM McKenzie is loaded in the car and headed to preschool. I walk her to class and give her a goodbye kiss and a reminder to be good.

8:25AM I arrive at the gym ready for my body pump class.

9:30AM I am gasping for air, dripping with sweat and running to my car to grab my iPhone. I need to check emails before I drive home.

9:40AM I am eating breakfast and working on client implementations in my company’s software. So glad I get to work from home.

10AM I am on my first of five conference calls of the day, providing tax technical advice.

11AM I am running late to the next call. No call ever ends early or on time. I am meeting with another client via Globalmeet. I love the meetings where I can share my laptop, do presentations and “meet” without clients seeing me, because I am still in workout clothes.

12PM Time for my Bridge Breast Network Board Meeting via teleconferencing. I am an eight-year breast cancer survivor, so volunteering and serving on the board of this organization that provides free life-saving medical services to the uninsured and those diagnosed with breast cancer provides me with a way to turn my test into a testimony. I serve as treasurer and vice president (I am a multi-tasker). 

1:15PM I am scarfing down a lunch of grilled fish and spinach and a Girl Scout cookie (OK, three).

1:30PM Back to my conference calls. This time it’s a sales support meeting with a prospect who is thinking of buying our tax software.

4:30PM Now I am preparing client tax returns and writing up tax planning and tax savings strategy memos for clients. I love being a CPA, even though it’s especially busy this time of year.

5:30PM Time to get McKenzie. She greets me with a “No, Mommy, I’m not ready to go yet. I’m doing a puzzle (or dancing, or playing with my friends, etc.). She realizes that when she gets home, it’s just Mommy and Daddy as her playmates.

6PM After a run to Boston Market, we are home and I am fixing McKenzie a snack. We recap the day. “What did you learn today? What letter did you work on? What Spanish word did you learn? What were your friends doing? Did you enjoy ballet?” I let her watch Disney or we do a puzzle while we wait for Daddy to come home.

6:30PM Daddy’s home! McKenzie hides from him, which means she runs in her room and lies on the floor – she’s not very good at hide and seek – and he finds her. Though this happens nightly, it always makes me laugh.

7:15PM We eat dinner as a family and then it’s playtime, which tonight is a tea party. I’m just glad it’s not old videos on Centric and a family dance-off with the likes of Beyoncé and Michael Jackson. Daddy is such a good sport. He’s drinking pretend tea out of his cup and even trying to hold his pinky out. I have on a tutu made of scarves, and McKenzie and I are both wearing pearls and tiaras. She wants to be a doctor and a princess when she grows up. She has the princess thing down.

8:30PM I get away with reading only three books tonight, and it’s time for bed. McKenzie is out like a light.

8:45PM Daddy and I get to spend a little time together while we catch up on The First 48, which he DVRs religiously.

9:30PM Daddy gets his clothes ready for work tomorrow and heads to bed. I follow up with one of my clients.

10:30PM I spend a few minutes Facebooking and playing Words With Friends and Ruzzle.

11PM I fall into bed exhausted and ready to do it all over again. I know that in about six hours, I will hear a little voice asking for milk.