Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Thank You & What I’ve Been Up To~

Thank you ladies….your comments yesterday meant the world to me….and brought tears to my eyes. I am going to continue writing my little blog….enjoy my little blog….and enjoy my dear friends.

Thank you. You mean more to me than you will ever know.

What I’ve been up to:

Some of you may know this by day I am an apartment manager. I’ve worked on my property 11 years. This is almost unheard of in my business as many managers go where the big bucks are…newer properties etc. Me, I love my little apartment community. I have many long term residents….I’ve seen some come. go. then come back. We have a sense of community….most of our residents feel this way. I’ve watched their children grow up, given them a hug on a bad day….sent them balloons on their birthday. That kind of environment is what makes my 200 unit property…special.

I have one lady in her mid 50’s who has lived there 7 years. She would wave when she walked by but we were never able to build a report with her like we have with some of the others. She came in my office late December….in tears. She was depressed and said her apartment was out of control. Note: I have two maintenance men, on site. One has been with me 6 years the other one 10 years. These 2 guys will go to the end of the earth for me or anyone else on the property. They are in & out of apartments all day repairing leaking faucets, ac’s/heaters…you name it. They fix it. Neither one of my guys had been called to this particular apartment in over a year.

So, I walked over to her apartment and went inside.


before: living room

Breakfast room before

before: breakfast room

{ I apologize for the poor photo’s. These were taken w/my cell phone. }

Now, I had heard she was a hoarder….but I really had no idea. Most of us, have seen the tv shows, but I’ve never seen it in person. I told her I felt confident that we could her apartment in order. She said “do you really think you can do something with this?” I said “of course”. This lady has family, but after several e-mails between myself and her daughter….no one else was willing to help. At least not to the degree she needed help. My resident told me that her daughter would come in and just “throw her stuff away. “ Well, we know you can’t do that….each item had to be thoroughly cleaned ( we’re talking 300 or so cookbooks and at least 500 little plastic food containers~ in addition to many other items.), she had to decide if she would “keep, donate or toss “. I suggested to her daughter that she bring storage bins ( clear ) so we can see inside of them & that all the cardboard boxes had to go….the apartment was in dire need of deep, deep cleaning and much needed organization. No one in her family would help her....my staff & I spent one day in there....the other day and 1/2 was just me. I have spent 20 hours in there so far. I didn’t realize what I had in store for me…..{it has been worth it.} I emptied her pantry ( tossed 2008, 2009 and some 2010 canned goods ) cleaned inside & out all of the cabinets. Unfortunately, I do not have a before picture of the kitchen but by seeing the before of the living room and breakfast room….you probably get the idea. I’ve only completed the living space, breakfast room and kitchen. Her bedroom and bathroom are next.

after jpg

after: living room ( ignore the vacuum and cups on coffee table…we were still working at this point. )

breakfast room after

after: breakfast room

I’m not decorating her apartment, just cleaning and organizing, trying to give her tips on keeping things stored neatly…etc. The daughter is bringing some new furniture next week. My resident told me she is very excited about her apartment getting organized. She will be signing an addendum to her lease that states she will be having weekly inspections due to past housekeeping issues. Overall…..we have bonded….she calls me a tornado and said she has never seen someone work the way I do. =) She also says that I treated her differently than others who have tried to come in and help her in the past. I was positive and didn’t degrade her. She is a charming lady and we even found time to dance in her living room! I will be spending some evenings over there this week , I figure 8-10 hours and we’ll be done. This has also been good for my soul…a new friendship and understanding with a super special lady. She knows she has a friend in me.

♥ Jessica


onlymehere said...

Bless your sweet kind heart for helping and not judging. I also think it was pretty brave of her to come to you and ask for help. Kellianne loves this show but I just can't watch it. I do, however, like Clean House and it's kind of the same concept. This had to have been a ton of work for you but I'm happy to hear that the work seemed to forge a new friendship.

Have a great day my friend!
P.S. I'm glad to hear you're going to keep blogging!!!!!

Happy To Be/ Gl♥ria said...

What a special person you are girl..I'm glad to call you friend..Hugs and smiles Gloria

Becca's Dirt said...

Why Jessica that is so sweet of you to do that for her. It wasn't part of your job but you did it anyway. They are blessed and they don't even know it to have someone like you looking out for them.

Lynne (lynnesgiftsfromtheheart) said...

Wow!! Just another confirmation, it's not the size of the gift, but the gift you give, and darling you're giving of yourself. What an honor to call you friend..
hugs ~lynne~

Queenie said...

This is an Amazing job you all did on this apartment Jessica...what a gift you gave this lady, you have got a heart of gold I'm telling you, and I know that God is smiling down on you :)

I never mentioned it to you, but I know what it means to be an aparment manager, we once managed a 40 unit apartment complex when we were in our early 20's. We did it for a year and then moved out, and on but We lived there and took care of everything the grounds, the pool, the apartment maintenance, the cleaning, the painting, paperwork and leases, and collecting rent...it was hard work, (especially since we lived there too) but it was very rewarding in a lot of ways....we learned a lot, we met a lot of nice people that we will never forget, and I still have a picture of one nice older lady, she loved my son so much and treated him like a grandson (he was only 3 yrs old at the time). Oh and I will never forget this elderly man that lived in the apartment next to us...he was on the the verge of dementia and his family called me to ask me to check in on him and I did and I could not believe the way he was living...I felt so sorry for him, it was terrible.. I was compelled to wash the dishes (they were piled everywhere and looked like the'd been piling up for weeks, and I cleaned the place up...I just had to....it's just heart breaking to see the way he was living, and he couldn't help it. I tried to check in on him more after that. He didn't get to stay that much longer though...his family decided he didn't need to be living alone anymore....but I will never forget him. People have a way of touching your heart, so I can completely understand the connection that you have made with this tenant and it looks like you and her have both made a new friend in the process...what a blessing :)

Well, I didn't mean to write so much but I wanted to share that with you.
I hope that you have a great weekend!
Big Hugs,
P.S. Cooper is so cute!

Betty said...

You are a special person. This was all in God's timing too. Take care dear lady.