Oct 29, 2011

Home, sweet home

Houses are a bit like us girls - they can use a day of beauty every now and then, ya know?  We can't take a house to a spa, but we can treat our dwelling to a day of refining and beautifying.

No, this isn't yet another post about our new house.  We recently offered our old place for lease (read: we stuck a sign in the yard) and were pleasantly surprised by the immediate response (within hours!) from several families interested in renting it.

As I showed the house and eventually made arrangements to lease it to one particular family, I began to look at our old home through the eager and bright eyes of a prospective occupant, rather than the weary eyes of the one who moved out.

The whole-house paint job looks great, but I realized the blinds needed cleaning (they weren't gnarly gross but they wouldn't pass anyone's white glove test.)  Ditto for the windows.  And the floors.  And the bathrooms and kitchen were passable, but I knew if I were moving in, I'd have to spend some time cleaning before I put my own things in the cabinets and drawers.

So this past week, I spent several hours (over the course of several days) deep cleaning and gently buffing and polishing everything to move-in condition.  At long last, the storage towers and hanging rods were installed in the bedroom closets, a new wire shelf/rack was up in the hall closet, the spot where the TV hung in the master bedroom was painted over, the bathrooms were sanitized to operating room condition, and all the floors were mopped and gleaming.  A flipped-over closet switch was righted (up is on, off is down), and the front door lever now operates properly.  It's the pesky little things you live with when it's yours, but you wouldn't wish on anyone else. (And after you do them, you wonder why you didn't find a few spare minutes to do it months or years ago!)

As I worked, I thought back to our own move-in experiences over the years.  As I reminisced, I thought how nice it would have been to find a few essentials and niceties to welcome us.

So I put myself in their shoes and made sure all the toilet paper holders were full and the bathroom sinks each had a dispenser of hand soap. I wiped out all the bathroom drawers and put a penny (heads-up) in each bathroom (because everyone needs a little luck, right?); changed out the filter on the HVAC system, and left the rest of the three-pack in the laundry room to encourage changes when needed.

New lightbulbs were inserted in all the the sparkly clean light fixtures and ceiling fans, and I tucked a few starter packets of dishwasher detergent under the sink; a scrubbed and bleached almost-new kitchen trashcan and a few trash can liners is at the ready.

On a whim, I snagged an inexpensive plastic  pumpkin and filled it with candy (they are moving in over the weekend and I have a hunch their trick-or-treating will be pre-empted by packing-and-moving.  As a final touch I filled a small basket with some apple-scented dish soap, new sponges and dishrags and a cute Thanksgiving towel to say "Welcome Home!" 

After I finished giving the old place its spa treatment, did I wish we were the ones moving in?  It did look pretty and welcoming.  But I am very content with our new home and I don't regret any part of our decision to find and move to a different home.

I have very high hopes for the future of the new family moving in.  I wish many blessings and joy on them as they make our old home their new home.

Happy moving in (and on),
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