The Mister Soandso and I are selling our house. This is our third house so this isn’t my first time at the rodeo, so to speak. But this rodeo feels different. Like instead of goofy clowns and angry bulls, the clowns all extras from a King novel and the bulls are all ex pats from Spain. It’s a dangerous world, this house selling business!
The first house I sold, Oldest was a toddler. Like an 18 month old version of toddlerdom. For the most part, my job was to pack him up and take him somewhere for the open house. It was 2001 and houses were selling like tasty hotcakes in Minneapolis. We sold that adorable house practically before the sign went up in the front yard.
The second house we sold was in 2004. We decided to sell it by-owner and got the info packet off the internet. It was listed on Wednesday, had an open house on Sunday, and sold by Monday. The most exciting bit was me trying to get back from the zoo with 4 year-old Biggest and 8 month old Middlest before the tornado hit. (Yes, life in Minnesota can be exciting. Don’t let all the snow boots and puffy stadium coats fool you.)
Fast forward to 2014 and the landscape of real estate is all different.
First off, let’s get the juicy bits out of the way. Biggest is verging on 14. Middlest is 10.5. And Littlest is just shy of 8.
If you’re a math whiz, that’s a lot of crap. Lego crap. Littlest Pet Shop crap. Book crap. (I don’t mean that. Books are our friends. Not crap.) But with five people and three pets living in one house, we have a lot of crap. In fact, just the number of shoes we own is crap.
In other words, we have a ton of crap that is going to somehow get into a box and then someday find a new home. But before then, the house must go from being our home to someone else’s. Hence the title.
We are now the proud owners of such things as SHOW TOWELS. If you are a fan of pooches, you might have visions of poodle-shaped linens prancing about the place and you’d not be far from the truth. For while the show towels are actually not expensive towels, they are very, very special.
All five people in this house have been instructed to never, ever use the show towels.
Because they are for showing the house. Not for use by the people who actually live in this house, but for the visual joy of the people traipsing through our house, scuffing up my waxed floors.
We no longer have tissue boxes in places people might think to find one. Because heaven knows, people trying to visualize themselves living in this house had better not conjure up spring allergies or a head cold.
And forget signs of normal life such as a fork in the sink, laundry in the baskets, a book on the side table. Instead, what you hear me shout on a regular basis is, “Don’t forget to brush your teeth and wash your hands before–wait! Not the show towels! Use the normal towel on the counter for god’s sake. Never, ever use the show towels!” I’m not sure who’s more traumatized by this whole thing: the kids for hygiene-induced towel phobias or me for keeping my house this clean for this long.
It’s as if my long-held wish has finally come true.
I live in an IKEA showroom. Aside from the lack of Swedish brand names and such things, of course. Only the show towels are from IKEA.
ps. If you have a lucky rabbit’s foot, or similar device, please say a little prayer-type-thing that this house sells quickly. I’d really like to take the tissue box out of the bathroom drawer.