Deb's Lake Conroe Real Estate & Stuff! : Give her an inch and she'll take the tub...

Give her an inch and she'll take the tub...

Yes she will. I was thinking about this today.

One of the first little houses we sold for an elderly gentlemen was just empty. Now, when I say empty, I mean it was lucky to have walls.

He was a big hearted gentleman that just could no longer take care of his home. He was moving in with one of  his daughters in the last days of his life. He knew that life on this earth was short but he wanted to sell the home and realize enough money to leave to his children.

As he was moving, to the extent that he could, he hired a maid.He hired her to clean everything he just couldn't get to. He boxed the few mementos he planned to carry with him and left the rest for the maid to take with her or distribute.

As he was leaving the maid to work on his home he told her, "I am leaving everything here behind. Please feel free to take home what you feel you can use and throw away the rest."

Boy did she take that seriously! When we walked into the little house there were no words to be spoken. The shock was severe.

She left nothing. I mean nothing. She took the sink, the light fixtures, the towel racks, the air conditioning units, the ceiling fans the appliances and whatever was not nailed down. She took some things that WERE nailed down.

We watched as his heart sank. We watched him search every corner with his eyes and watched them cloud up. We would have offered him a chair but...well, you know.

The gentleman cleared his throat, began to nod his head and slowly but surely a smile was crossing his face. "She must have needed that, he said with a lilt in his voice. How much you think we can get for this place?"

He saw no reason to discuss what happened as he had given her permission to take what she wanted.

We did sell the house but it was after his passing. When I think of generosity I think of this elderly gentleman looking pleased that the maid got what she wanted.

All we take with us is our knowledge and love.




and Proud of it!








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Comment balloon 36 commentsDeb Brooks • April 18 2008 12:01AM


What a heart-rending, yet touching story. Thanks for sharing the experience. It really was unimaginable until you spoke out.
Posted by Vickie Nagy, Vickie Jean the Palm Springs Condo Queen (Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate) about 11 years ago
Debra, that is a good story.  I hope to learn to have that kind of an attitude before my time on Earth is over!
Posted by Tony & Darcy Cannon, The C Team (Aubrey and Associates Realty) about 11 years ago
Oh My, Deb.  What an awesome man he was.  What a wonderful lesson he shared.
Posted by Nancy Brenner, Roswell Georgia Real Estate Agent (Referral Associates of Georgia, Inc.) about 11 years ago
That is a touching story, but it should also remind us that we need to be specific when we give instructions.
Posted by Christine Hart Howlett, Keller Williams Greater Cleveland NE (Painesville and Eastern Lake County) about 11 years ago

Vicki, he was in touch with himself. You could just feel it. Good man.

Tony and Darcy, me too! I try everyday to let less and less "little things" bother me.

Nancy, he was so sweet. It made me so sad for him. He was happy through it all though. His daughters were proud as well they should be!

Christine, you're not kidding about that! At least he hadn't left a car behind!

Later in the rain~Deb

Posted by Deb Brooks (Brooks Prime Properties Wichita Falls Texas) about 11 years ago

Hi Debra,

Oh my gosh, she helped herself allright. Sort of sounds like some REO's I've/we've been seeing. Some even have the cabinets removed.

Posted by Lynda Eisenmann, Broker-Owner,CRS,CDPE,GRI,SRES, Brea,CA, Orange Co (Preferred Home Brokers) about 11 years ago
Well Lynda, I guess he really got lucky. She left the cabinets! I came across a REO recently that even the electrical wiring had been stolen for the copper...hum. How much can you get for four walls and a slab?
Posted by Deb Brooks (Brooks Prime Properties Wichita Falls Texas) about 11 years ago
Debra - I really enjoyed this story; a clear example of misuse of someone's generosity.
Posted by Jennifer Fivelsdal, Mid Hudson Valley real estate connection ( JFIVE Home Realty LLC | 845-758-6842|162 Deer Run Rd Red Hook NY 12571) about 11 years ago
Debra, this is so sad...
Posted by Missy Caulk, Savvy Realtor - Ann Arbor Real Estate (Missy Caulk TEAM) about 11 years ago
Debra this lady really had some nerve.
Posted by Nannette Turner, Online Marketing Home Ownership Advocate Specialis (Keller Williams Lynchburg) about 11 years ago
Wow Deb- What grace that gentleman had! I know I would not have been as serene or forgiving. A lesson truly. Thanks girl!
Posted by Vanessa Stalets, REALTOR, Brentwood TN Homes, Real Estate (RE/MAX Elite) about 11 years ago
Debra, He knew he couldn't take the things where he was going, He was at peace with that. No time left to sweat the small stuff
Posted by Hugh Krone, Realtor, Sussex County NJ (Weichert Referral Associates) about 11 years ago

What an amazing man.  I can't believe she would take everything like that, that's crazy. 

Posted by Chris Fisher (Your Virtual Assistant) about 11 years ago

It is crazy Chris, and I told him so. He just looked at me with forgiving eyes that were aimed toward heaven.

Hugh, the older and older I get the smaller the "stuff" seems to get. That's the way it's suppose to be.

Vanessa, he did have such grace and generosity and forgiveness. The very attributes I am looking for.

Nannette, If I had my way she would have been punished.

Missy, sad but happy too. He found such a wonderful graciousness within that it spread through me.

Jennifer, it was a misuse yet he took it like a gentleman and Santa Clause.

Later in the rain~Deb

Posted by Deb Brooks (Brooks Prime Properties Wichita Falls Texas) about 11 years ago
Is there an E in Santa Claus? Clause? no.
Posted by Deb Brooks (Brooks Prime Properties Wichita Falls Texas) about 11 years ago
Deb, isn't it amazing people take advantage of your generosity to this extent? They are warped. I can relate to your comment about not sweating the small stuff as you get older, It just isn't worth the energy.
Posted by Gary Woltal, Assoc. Broker Realtor SFR Dallas Ft. Worth (Keller Williams Realty) about 11 years ago
The true spirit of giving even if unintentional.  He must have been at peace with it or wouldn't have given so freely.  God Bless his spirit. 
Posted by Terrylynn Fisher, HAFA Certified, EcoBroker, CRS, CSP Realtor, Etc. (Dudum Real Estate Group - about 11 years ago
What a wonderful lesson ! Thank you so much for sharing this ! A truly heart wrenching story ~
Posted by Melissa Grant, The Law of Attraction In Life & Business (A Serendipity World) about 11 years ago
I can't believe she had the nerve to take advantage of the elderly like that.  He is right though she must have needed that stuff bad.  What dignity he died with.  I applaud you for honoring his memory this way.  What a sweet man!
Posted by Sharon Tara, New Hampshire Home Stager (Sharon Tara Transformations) about 11 years ago
How hard it must have been for you not to hunt down this maid and ...well you know. Something about people mellowing with age or do you think he was always this dear. Lovely story thank you. Kym
Posted by Kym Hough, Staged to Sell East Bay - Danville, CA (www.Staged-to-Sell ) about 11 years ago
I too enjoyed this story, and I too am appaled at the Maid's actions!  Nothing else to say really, as he inadvertently "gave her permission" as he stated.  What a work of art she is :(
Posted by Kathy McGraw, Riverside County CA Real Estate (CELLing Realty) about 11 years ago

Hi Deb, this was so sweet, sad, and funny, I ready your other one about the inspection write so well.  Can I hire you to teach me how to do all that fancy stuff you did not your winning historical town post? :)  That was outstanding and congratulation on your win, you deserved it.

I'm got the post done, so you better get on over there with your ideas, Good Golly Miss getting married in the rain...Active Rain that is , you are a TWP, you know.

Did you have to put the picture with the toothpick hanging outa my mouth?  I know you were paying me back...but I warned you.  By the way, Rhett says hi and to give you a big kiss, Love Ya, L







Tell Scott I really enjoyed meeting him too, yall make a nice couple.

Posted by Liz Carter, Broker/Owner of Liz Carter & Team Realty, Katy TX (Houston) (Liz Carter & Team Realty-Your Real Estate Resource For Life!) about 11 years ago

Hi Gary, It's a wonder the lady could sleep at night.

TerryLynn, I could learn from him!

Melissa, it sure helps put things in perspective.

Sharon, amazingly sweet and obviously giving. Thanks for coming by!

Kym, you don't want to know how tempting it was.

Kathy, she will get hers...

Liz, How's Rhett? BLOW him a kiss for me. "BLOW" is of course the key word here!!! He's a cutey. I will try to share about the slide show. I'm working on it!

Later in the rain~Deb

Posted by Deb Brooks (Brooks Prime Properties Wichita Falls Texas) about 11 years ago
That took a lot of nerve on that cleaning woman's part! Talk about tacky! If someone told me to take whatever I wanted, those things wouldn't have even occurred to me. It's too bad she couldn't have obtained some class!
Posted by Lisa Hill, Daytona Beach Real Estate (Florida Property Experts) about 11 years ago
Deb - I hope to have that kind of grace when I get older.  Heck, I hope to have it now.  Great post, my friend.  I am including this one in the Family Ties recap tonight.
Posted by Jason Crouch, Broker - Austin Texas Real Estate (512-796-7653) (Austin Texas Homes, LLC) about 11 years ago
Some people just take the cake.... and the cabinets and the... well, never mind. LOL  He probably figured she needed the things more than he did.  He definitely had a forgiving, generous heart. 
Posted by Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired (Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®) about 11 years ago

Hi Deb...This man's glass was always full.  What happiness he created for himself.  It is an art I hope to achieve.

Thank you for sharing such a touching story.


Posted by Kate Elim, Realtor 540-226-1964, Selling Homes & Land a (Dockside Realty) about 11 years ago

Hi Deb, congratulations on Jason picking your post, well deserved!  Thought I would put the good picture of you on here too :)












Could not remember if I had sent this to you for Scott yet or not, sorry if you got it twice.  L

Posted by Liz Carter, Broker/Owner of Liz Carter & Team Realty, Katy TX (Houston) (Liz Carter & Team Realty-Your Real Estate Resource For Life!) about 11 years ago
This is a sad story. I cannot believe the maid took "everything". Sad for the gentleman - and he definitely sounded like a gentle man.
Posted by Sharon Paxson, Newport Beach Real Estate (Compass) about 11 years ago

Hey Liz, I really can identify with the cartoon. Scott gave up on me coming to bed at a reasonable hour. Thanks for the laugh! I liked it!

Sharon, this was sad but sweet too. I can only imagine that the maid was in need anyway and he ended up feeling good about the whole thing.

Later in the rain~Deb

Posted by Deb Brooks (Brooks Prime Properties Wichita Falls Texas) about 11 years ago
Very nice story and I am pleased he had a sense of humor.
Posted by Latonia Parks, Certified Military Relocation Expert (Top Bragg Realty, Fayetteville NC, Home of the 82d ABN DIV) about 11 years ago
Wow...that just goes to show that our words sure can get twisted out of context to suit their wants.
Posted by Celeste "SALLY" Cheeseman, (RA) AHWD CRS ePRO OAHU HAWAII REAL ESTATE (Liberty Homes) about 11 years ago

Latonia, I'm glad he did too. He just felt it wasn't worth the effort to rebuke. He was able to smile about it.

Sally, I think she stretched it way out of proportion! She simply took what she wanted...and probably gave the rest away! I'm glad you two stopped by!

Later in the rain~Deb

Posted by Deb Brooks (Brooks Prime Properties Wichita Falls Texas) about 11 years ago
I was surprised how the story ended. I thought the man would be concerned about the monetary loss for hsi children since he was leaving it to his children. I am glad it turned out well and that he and his children were okay with it and very generous to let it go.
Posted by Julie Kippen about 11 years ago

Julie, I was surprised too. His very adult kids were pretty set on their own. I think if he actually had needed it for them he would have reacted somewhat differently. Thank you for commenting.

Later in the rain~Deb

Posted by Deb Brooks (Brooks Prime Properties Wichita Falls Texas) about 11 years ago

Debra:  This is a man that didn't need to dwell on the negative and unpleasant.  He didn't deserve this type of treatment by the cleaning lady.  I sincerely doubt that she needed any of that, but took advantage and cashed in.  Very sad.

Posted by Chris Ann Cleland, Associate Broker, Bristow, VA (Long and Foster REALTORS®, Gainesville, VA) about 11 years ago