But, I Got the Rose Bushes. I Definitely Got the Rose Bushes.*

Can someone please punch me in the face? Just knock me out. Please?

A house down the street just went into contract. It is smaller than us. It is listed higher than us. And it went into escrow yesterday.

This is baffling for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that we don't think these buyers even looked at our house. Our house backs to huge mature trees and a slope. Their house backs to a busy street. Our house is over 3000 square feet. Theirs is 2800. Our house is decorated with goddamn Eddie Bauer paint and Pottery Barn furniture. I guarantee the woman who decorated that house shops at Dress Barn. Granted, they have wood floors (and maybe the buyers have the same obsession Amy does with wood floors), but are they really worth paying an extra $10,000 and sacrificing 200 square feet?

My throbbing and confused head says no.

When I called Chris at work and shared the news of this sale, he started cackling so apoplectically it sounded like his head may pop right off and roll around his office. I told him I was driving past the other house at that very moment.

Me: "It has rose bushes in the front."

Chris: "So?"

Me: "Well, we don't have rose bushes."

Chris: "No. We have a two hundred dollar Crepe Myrtle in full bloom."

Me: "True. Guess who it's listed with."

Chris: "Keller Williams."

Me: "Bastards."

Of course it is listed with Keller Williams. Awhile back when I showed pictures of my house and asked your opinion on improvements you thought I should make because it hadn't sold after being listed for five weeks (HA! We were such infants then!), I received about 20 emails all saying the same thing.

List with Keller Williams.

It seemed like each of you had a personal story of someone in our situation who dropped their realt*r, re-listed with Keller Williams and was sold by the time the new sign went in. I have no idea why this is the case. Is it because they favor only each other's listings within their own br*kerage? Are they like a little enclave - their own mini market? I'm starting to think so. And I hate them. And I am starting to obsess about being listed with them.

Keller Williams is like the head cheerleader.

Anyway, I started writing this post yesterday before this little development and it was actually to tell you some good news.

We're packing!

We signed a lease on a house near Laguna Beach. The new house is five minutes from Chris' new job in Newport Beach. The new house is two minutes from Savannah's new school. The new house is in a beautiful neighborhood without a single shopping cart to be seen. In fact, every yard in the city seems to be professionally landscaped. Foliage forethought! Yesterday, when Chris and I went by there to peek in the windows for the nineteenth time, people were actually outside watering their lawns and washing their cars and their children were riding bikes.

It's like people actually enjoy living there.

Did I also mention that there's a clubhouse? With a pool? And gym? And tennis courts? Did I mention that we're within walking distance to movies and restaurants? Oh, right. Also, a little thing called THE OCEAN!

What's that, you say? What about our house we haven't sold and our ticking time bomb of a m*rtgage? Well, don't you know how to kill a buzz.

Combined, our newly adjusted m*rtgage payment plus our new monthly rent amount are such a ridiculous number that writing that first check this week felt like someone kicked me in the face.

Now, before you kids think that we're rolling in the proverbial dough over here, I have two words for you: yard sale.

That's what we did last weekend. And you know what? People are serious about yard sales. We opened our garage door at 6:00 am to find a small crowd standing expectantly on our driveway. So eager they were to try and offer me ten bucks for an entire bin of Gymboree clothes and quarters for BRAND NEW SHOES. Oh, how we debated. In Spanish.

One guy was so obsessed with the lawn chairs we were sitting on that he couldn't stop staring at them until we finally removed ourselves from them and let him pay us $17 for both. (Shhh. They were from Big Lots. Score!)

It was so damn successful and demoralizing all at once - the perfect sadomasochistic combination.

Lastly, file the following news under Things That Are Way More Important Than Lena's House, Except To Lena: Julia is pregnant with twins and the genetic testing showed yesterday that they are both normal! (And in my opinion, also girls.) I have been reading Julia throughout all of her thirteen pregnancies and I could not be more thrilled for her. I actually took a break from crying for myself last night to cry for her. I know. I'm a giver.

*Whoever knows what movie this references gets a huge shout out from me tomorrow for being so awesome.


In the Trenches of Mommyhood said...

Me first! Me first!
It's from Rainman!

blog Portland said...

I soooo knew that before she did.

Amy said...

You could forget that line in Rain Main? I'm so glad you are moving closer to things that you love! I wouldn't pay $10,000 for 200 less square feet even if it had rose bushes...i'm guessing that it would cost less to buy your house and get some gosh darn bushes :)

Kristin said...

Welcome to the neighborhood.

Lena said...

I shall oblige myself of your liquor cabinet, Kristin.

Poppy said...

Congratulations on the new house. I've got my fingers crossed that the mtg. co. accepts your proposal.

Hang in there~

Kim said...

Okay, that's it...we are listing with Keller Williams!

We had the same thing happen to us! The house that backs up to ours? Exact same layout. Has nothing really different about it at all. SOLD. Last week. *cries* Why? Because they took a seriously low $60,000 less than we are asking....and we've already dropped our asking price over $150,000.

Thank you, dear neighbor. Thank you very much. Grrrr.....

the parents zone said...

Congratulations on a nice beautiful new house...and how much you mad with yard sale???

lori said...

Rainman, it's definitely Rainman.
I found my way over from Y's, and today is my first visit. I couldn't help myself from commenting, I just love that movie!

Mrs. M said...

I am garage saling this weekend! At first it was things not used in 6mo, then 6 wks, and now I'm down to the last 7 days. If we've not seen/touched/spoke about/used it in 7 days, it's out the door! We're seriously downsizing.

I'm sure this is a ridiculous suggestion and there is a reason that you're not doing it, but what about listing with Keller Williams? Would that help with the mortgages you think?

Brillig said...

On my way to call Keller Williams, as I'm in an eerily similar situation to yours. I'm still praying that my house will just burn down, so I can run with the insurance money. How sick is that?

And I'm so thrilled for you with your new home. YAY!!!

Lindsay said...

I am new to your blog. I'm not even sure how I got here. But I just want to say that your writing is amazing. You are an inspiration to be positive even during life's lemons. Thanks for your dose of "lemonade" it was much needed.

Butrfly4404 said...

You ARE a giver. :)

Your rental makes me want to squeal a little bit. Can I come live with you...just for a little bit? I promise I'll leave, my family will make me.

Anonymous said...

Can I come live with you? The new house sounds so, so awesome. Forget the checks and the stupid old house, just bask in the glow of walking to the beach and the pool and the tennis courts.

Her Bad Mother said...

Those people were giving out free blow jobs at their open houses. I'm just sayin.'

myminivanisfasterthanyours said...

Good to know about Keller Williams. I'm thinking about calling them and we're not even moving :)

Very jealous about the ocean. I live in the desert and get excited about puddles!

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