The Air In Here.

The owner of the house came by on Thursday. We didn’t realize he was going to bring his whole family so it was awkward and made us lose our momentum in telling him we’re moving. While here they opened up a crawl space that’s in the basement. Previous tenants of this house had cats (not the one’s before us but before them). I guess the cats used to go in this crawl space and they found a lot of rancid cat piss on top of plastic wrap in the crawl space.

I know this isn’t the only reason for the nasty house smell but that is so disgusting. The owner brought along a contractor and said he’ll do everything he can to help when it comes to this house.

So even though we are moving, both the hubby and I chickened out and didn’t tell him that we just can’t live here. The hubby is so worried about the legal ramifications of breaking the one year lease. I reminded him that for the past week we have lived here, there has been rancid cat piss in a crawl space not far from where we sleep in the basement.

While the owner and his family were here, his early 20-ish son came upstairs from the basement coughing. They hadn’t even been here more than half an hour and that just shows how bad the air quality in this house is.

The hubby along with the owner and family went outside to the back of the house and I stayed inside with the little girl. The opening of that crawl space really triggered something because I started to have an asthma attack. My asthma has always been under control and I’ve never had anything like that before. I had a small one years ago but I think it was due to the fact that I was also having a panic attack.

The asthma attack got so bad, I thought I would have to go to the hospital but after being outside for a while, it got better. The owner was about to leave and I was still waiting for the hubby to tell him that we just can’t live in this house. I know I could have told him myself but here’s the thing. I feel in cases like this it’s better for my hubby to handle it because it would just sound better coming from him.

I feel like there’s this double standard where if a guy speaks up he’s respected but if a woman does it she’s just a bitch. I’m not old-fashioned but I just prefer it when my hubby handles things when it comes to dealing with landlords, car mechanics, plumbers, and so on.

I’m perfectly capable of handling things on my own, especially after being married so long to a military man who has been deployed countless times for several months, but when the hubby is around I like him to do it (read: I’m too much of a scaredy cat).  But he didn’t say a word and I was still getting over my asthma attack. So the hubby walked the owner to the front of the house and then he left with his family.

I stayed at the back of the house and cried, then it turned into the ugly cry. I really hate those. When I went back into the house, I noticed a smell that just got worse over the course of the night. It smelled like a can of bug spray exploded in the basement. Where we sleep. In our comfy, king size bed.

It got so bad I woke up my hubby at 2 am (why can’t this stuff ever happen earlier) and we had to wake up the little girl and go upstairs to sleep. Since Thursday night/morning we’ve been sleeping on the couch, not our big, cozy bed. It’s still down in the basement probably being infested with spiders and moldy smells along with rancid cat piss.

Not only that, there’s a skylight right above the couch in the living room so when we go to bed and it’s dark and quiet, my imagination runs wild. I feel like I’m going to look up and see some creepy monster or zombie looking down on us from the skylight. Yes, I’m 5.

Friday morning I woke up and it felt like my stomach was in horrible knots. I think the stress of this whole move that started July 14th has finally gotten to me. My stomach just won’t calm down so I’ve been slamming pepto and ginger ale for the past 4 days. I’m finally able to laugh a little about this situation. Since the musty smell is so bad, we can’t close our kitchen cabinets. Every time I walk in the kitchen, it reminds me of that scene in “The Sixth Sense” where the cabinets are opened by ghosts and I expect to see Toni Colette and Haley Joel Osment standing there.

My hubby finally told the owner a few days ago that we’re not going to be able to live here so he is letting us out of our lease, although I don’t know what the conditions are yet. I should have gone with my instinct about this house from the start and said no to it. I was looking back at some older posts and I even mentioned how I have renter’s remorse and it will be such a challenge to fit our stuff into this house. I was also less than thrilled that we had to make the basement our bedroom.

I do have a lot of guilt about doing this to the owner which is making my stress and stomach even worse. The owner is so nice and we had mentioned to him when we first moved in that we would love to plant a garden for our daughter. He emailed us a few days later and said he has a friend that can come by and help us get it started free of charge. OOHHHHH! That’s me groaning with guilt.

He also gave us a couple of geraniums for our garden…OOHHHHHH! He told us that his mom loved geraniums and she’s smiling down on us knowing her favorite flowers are in our garden and that there’s a child running around the house again. Okay now, say it with me…OOHHHHHHH!

After my hubby told him that this house isn’t going to work out for us because of all the breathing problems I’ve been having, the owner said he felt so bad about it that my hubby should take me out somewhere nice on his dime….OOHHHHH!

I feel like such an asshole.


Now with pics. This is so embarrassing because the place is such a mess but we don’t have anywhere to put our things because of the awful smell in the cabinets and drawers. Our dressers are in the basement but we can’t keep our clothes down there because it reeks. When looking at the photos think of the smell of bug spray, animal urine, and mildew.

The kitchen with cabinets we can’t close b/c of the stench. We have to put bleach down the sink almost every day since there’s an awful smell coming from there too. Good Times! We keep our television to the right of this pic.

Our abandoned bed and the kitty.

Our new bedroom/playroom/living room (I made my part of the couch. hehe). But look at the view we have outside. 😉

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11 Responses to The Air In Here.

  1. Lisa August 24, 2010 at 08:22 #

    Ohhhh…Elle, I feel so bad for you that you’re having all these pains. But it will subside once you get resettled into the new place…You’re doing the right thing- AND you’re not an a**hole!! You were kind about it to the landlord….I’m just so happy that he’s not being a jerk!

    Don’t beat yourself up too much-(I get it…I would be doing the same thing) Just keep repeating “I need to breathe- I need to breathe.” It’ll all be alright. 🙂

    ps…glad the hubby finally told him! :p

    pps…you should put some pics of the place up…I’m sooo curious to put a “face” with the crazy stories!

    • Elle August 24, 2010 at 08:44 #

      Thank you for that. I promise I will stop bitching about this place because it even annoys me. I might do a woohoo once we leave but I don’t have anymore plans to write about it (yay!).

      I thought about putting pics up but the thing is the house *is* beautiful and photographs really well. If I put pics up I’m sure people would wonder what I’m complaining about. I’m going to think about it. Read: I’m sure I will put pics up.

      I’m just not sure if I should put up the pics we took before moving in or what it looks like now. Right now it looks like something out of Hoarders:Buried Alive since we don’t have anywhere to put our things because of the stinky cabinets. I wish pictures could be scratch n’ sniff. 😉

  2. lisa August 24, 2010 at 09:28 #

    btw- i don’t think you’re bitching too much!! 🙂 not even a lil’ bit…and I don’t find it annoying.

    I think you should take pics WITH the cabinets open while you live there! That would be a great story enhancer…not that it’s great for you to live with… 🙂

    hang in there!

  3. lisa August 24, 2010 at 10:54 #

    wow….you poor things! love how the cat looks right at home in the king bed with the lovely smell of cat stench!! 🙂

    thanks for giving a great visual!

    • Elle August 24, 2010 at 11:03 #

      Our kitty is in heaven, she has the bed to herself. She probably thinks the cat urine smell is hers. 😀

  4. Cassie August 24, 2010 at 13:08 #

    OHHH, I’m so bummed for you! I was feeling guilty right along with you when I read about his mom looking down on her geraniums!!!
    But you have to do what’s best for your family. I’m positive your landlord understand that!

    I’m keeping my fingers crossed that this next move works out 100x better for you!!

    • Elle August 24, 2010 at 15:57 #

      Thank you for that!

  5. waj306 August 24, 2010 at 18:50 #

    I would 100% be the same way. Too scared to tell him and feeling guilty too. I’m sure he understands! Sounds like this is totally the right move for you guys and glad it’s happening soon!

    There is definitely a double standard for men and women. Not to get all serious on your blog or anything 😉 But just the same as when kids were in high school and the boys were awesome and the girls were sluts!

  6. Elle August 24, 2010 at 21:32 #

    I’m so glad we were able to get out of the lease. Only a week and a half to go, then we’ll be back in our king size bed, not our couch. 🙂

    I hated that double standard back in high school. It’s even like that in the adult world though. Just look at Tiger Woods. All of the women he slept with were considered sluts but he was “the man”. Some of the women are questionable 😉 but he’s the one who slept with 15 or more women while married. ugh!


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