Sunday, May 31, 2009

It's showtime!

I always think of "Beetlejuice" when I hear "It's showtime"...when Geena Davis says "Beetlejuice" three times and Michael Keaton appears.

That movie was a hoot. One of my favorite parts is when the dinner party sings along to the Banana Boat Song. (This one is in English but has foreign sub-titles...couldn't find just a regular one.)



Anyway, "Beetlejuice" is not the reason for my post tonight. If plans had gone according to schedule, I would be here right now.

But VivaAerobus cancelled my flight "due to the swine flu virus." In reality, I think it's because they weren't making any money flying out of Austin, so they've cancelled all further flights from there. Now they're flying out of Las Vegas, however. We'll see how that goes. At least I got my full refund.

The real reason it's "showtime" is because I've officially put my house on the market and signed all the papers last Friday. So this baby is up for sale. (No "For Sale" sign in the front yard yet, though.)

Since I've been thinking about doing this, I've painted the entire exterior. (I did the tile work in the front entry shortly after I moved here in 2004, so that wasn't part of my recent improvements.)

Close-up of the telltale real estate lock box.

So I have totally de-cluttered, de-personalized and minimized furnishings in the house. Very few knick-knacks, neutral colors, etc. Painted the living room a neutral taupe...

And the dining room...

And decided to move my desk/computer into the quirky room with the cement floor off the kitchen/dining area...

...on the other side of the window I made (and posted previously) to give it some aesthetic appeal. It was empty before and some people don't have the ability to imagine what to do with an empty "bonus" room, so I thought making it my office would give it some definition.

Painted my bedroom 'Vanilla Wafer' (boring but sellable)...

And bathroom (a kind of light sage green...slightly more interesting)...

And painted the little deck on the backside of the house. My garden ain't got nothin' on Beck's, Ann's and Vee's yards. I should have paid them to come out and give me some tips. I just planted a few more flowers and threw down some fresh mulch. It's amazing how fresh mulch will make a garden look so much better.

Even painted the garage. I don't mind painting the interior of the house because the final outcome is always so gratifying...especially when you're painting a vivid color. But painting my garage was damned boring because I don't spend any time in my garage...only to get into/out of my car and when I'm looking for a paint can or tool or getting the lawn mower. The most time I've spent in my garage at any one time is about two minutes...tops. Except when I was painting it...then it was like a whole bunch of boring hours. (By the way, all those red boxes are full of books which I'm giving to the senior citizens center who I keep forgetting to call to have them pick up.)

So I sign the papers on Friday afternoon and the real estate agent goes out to my house to take pictures and measurements. She said I wouldn't have any action this weekend because it takes several days to post. NOT! I woke up on Saturday thinking I had the whole weekend to do little odd jobs like dust the ceiling fans, swiffer the floors and wipe down the cabinets. I pulled into the Target parking lot where I was going to get some new towels for the bathroom so it would look spiffy, when I get a call from my real estate agent. Someone from her office wants to show my house at 3:00. What time is it now? 2:15. Forget about the towels...call Jared to get him to arrange his room and clean his windows. Rush home and do as much as I can before 3:00. Throw the litter box and cats in the car (because we don't want potential buyers to think we have pets) and drive around for an hour listening to MEOW! MEOW! MEOW! while they're climbing on the dashboard, around my legs, wondering why I am being so cruel to them taking them away from home in this strange machine. (Why is it that dogs LOVE riding in cars and cats HATE it?) And since we're in South Texas where the days are approaching 100 degrees, I have to keep the air conditioning on so that they're comfortable. Wouldn't want the SPCA on my back.

Oh, well...that's what happens when you're selling a house. I'll have Sunday to catch up on those things I wanted to do. NOT!! On Sunday morning, I got calls for showings at 11:00 and 2:00. Shit!! I got the 11:00 call at 10:00 and still hadn't mowed the yard so I asked them if they could back it up by a half hour...which they did. So I mowed the yard, threw the cats and the litter box in the car and drove around for an hour to MEOW! MEOW! MEOW! Get the hell in the back seat and shut up, for God's sake! (I didn't really say that, but I may have been thinking it.)

Okay, so we get through the 2:00 showing and I'm thinking "Whew! That was fun." Then I hear, "...have another beer in Mexico..." (That's my ringtone.) I look on my phone and it's from the realtor. Oh, God, no...please, no. Yep...it's another showing...at 5:45 tonight. I have about three hours and I'm so tired I don't want to do a damn thing. I should be glad that I'm having this activity but if it weren't for the damn cats (who I love, but maybe not so much when I'm trying to sell a house)! One last time today...throw the cats and the litter box in the car and drive around. By this time the cats were actually getting used to it and just laid down in the back seat...probably from being tired of the whole ordeal.

So these are a few things I did to boost the sale. Good smelling candle...

Fresh daisies on the table...

And even bought an inexpensive fountain with zen-like water trickling...

So I'm at work on Friday and I'm telling the UPS guy that I'm trying to sell my house. He says, "Isn't there something you're supposed to bury in your yard to give you good luck?" Hmmm...come to think of it, I had heard that myself but couldn't remember. Then the lab technician guy comes in an we ask him. "Yeah...I think it's St. Joseph...you should Google it."

So I did. And St. Joseph it is.

I guess you're supposed to bury him upside down next to the "For Sale" sign facing the house. I'm not Catholic but I've learned through the years that we should get all the help we can get, so what the heck...I got one. I don't have a "For Sale" sign yet, so I'm waiting to bury the poor guy (seems kind of cruel to me...especially upside down for cryin' out loud), so he's perched on my window sill above my sink.

So my office is the only place in the house where I have some momentos. These are sitting on the table next to my printer. My real estate agent was at my computer last week looking at local listings and she said, "So, is that your son?"

HaHaHaHaHaHa! That was a good one! I told her that was one of my favorite photos from Isla Mujeres...a little island off the coast of Cancun. I took this picture in May of 2007...he was one of the workers building the new pier. He was about 100 feet away from me and didn't have a clue I was taking his picture...which makes his cocky pose genuine.

Well, I wish I could be like a bug in the window and hear what potential buyers think about the house.

And, finally (thank God)...it's time to relax...

4 comments:

Jamqueen said...

The house looks great! Wonderful that you had that much activity so quickly! Hope one of them turns into a sale!

Vee said...

Deb, I'm so glad the house is generating such interest. Everything looks wonderful! I've heard the St. Joseph story, too. Maybe you'll sell really quickly and not have to take the kitties for many more rides. Best of luck, and keep us posted!

Paul said...

You've done a nice job. Is that a bottle of tequila on your kitchen sink, or Johnny Walker Red? Couldn't blame you for taking a couple of 'bumps' after all the hard work you've invested. Good luck!

Isla Deb said...

Thanks, Ann and Vee. Considering the economy these days, I am keeping my fingers crossed.

Paul - HaHaHaHaHa! No, that's not a bottle of Johnny Walker Red (although I could use one about now). It's a bottle of olive oil...which happened to crack on the bottom a couple days ago and I had olive oil all over my counter.