Ten Reasons Why You Will Love Having Me As Your Next House/ Plant/ Pet Sitter:
(1) Peace of mind - it's everything, right? How can a person possibly relax, and enjoy their time away, if they don't have a sense of peace about who they've entrusted the care of their home/ plants/ pets with? I'm a mature, responsible person with loads of common sense...which isn't so common anymore. Do you ever find that? Your place, plants, and pets will be safe with me. The bottom line is that if you respect people, you don't violate them/ their boundaries. Period. As surely as what goes up, comes down; so is it true that what goes out, comes in. I truly believe that what we put out, we get right back. What emanates from us, will be back at our doorstep in no time.
(2) I'm respectful, and self-aware. We all need to be responsible for the energy that we bring into any situation. Small children, and animals, are especially adept at recognizing this. I'll treat your home, and belongings, with the care as if they were my own. (This means that I don't wear outdoor footwear indoors. I don't place mugs containing hot beverages, nor glasses of cool beverages, on surfaces without using a coaster. I don't conduct myself in a mindless way as I go about my day. I'm thoughtful, deliberate, and think of the effects of those actions on any other person(s), or animal(s). I don't do things such as something that I recently witnessed a former colleague of mine do to her own furniture, which was to put on lip balm from a little tub, and then wipe the remnants onto the fabric of her sofa! I would've gotten a tissue.) I know how important it is to find someone that you can trust with your home. I'll treat your pets, and plants, with loving care, and compassion. I'll speak to them in a calm, soft-spoken, kind, mild manner.
(3) I'm a communicator. This means that it's important to me that all parties in a conversation feel equally heard, respected, and understood. I practise active listening. I'm cognizant of how I frame things. I have lived, and worked, abroad - whilst fitting in as much personal travel as I possibly could - so I have a heightened cross-cultural awareness/ sensitivity. Having stated that, though, each head is truly its own world! Socialization of the individual is everything. I'll communicate with you as much - or as little - as you would like during your time away. I'll follow your instructions to the letter because it's important to me that you know that your home/ plants/ pets are well-cared for. I want this to be a positive experience for us both.
(4) I truly love, and care about, animals. I respect all living things - with the possible exception of mosquitoes. I can't say that I've developed much of an appreciation for them! All kidding aside, I grew up on a (grain/ animal) farm in the Canadian prairie provinces, just above Montana - "Big Sky Country." (Whenever I'm at the farm, I'm always amazed by the various cloud formations, and the different colours in the sky! It's truly magnificent, and always absolutely stunning!) Animals have been a part of my life for all of my life. I naturally gravitate toward animals, and have a deep appreciation for them. As a child, I was always outside, playing with our animals/ pets. I grew up with cattle, pigs, chickens, turkeys, ducks, geese, rabbits, dogs, cats, and fish. Some of my earliest memories as a young girl were of the animals being born on the farm. I remember the excitement of meeting newborn calves, kittens, puppies, piglets, goslings, and baby chicks. I can clearly recall watching one of my older siblings excel at breeding tropical fish, and seeing the babies dart around the incubator hatchery. Those experiences made a very strong impression on me! I remember it as if it were yesterday.
One of my little jobs, as a child, was to collect the eggs from the laying hens. My mom insisted that I cleaned them with a little dish of white vinegar, and a soft cloth, before they went into the refrigerator! I vividly remember sitting at the kitchen table, cleaning the eggs, talking to her, while she was cooking/ canning/ pickling. Horses were a big part of my life...and one horse in particular. I took riding lessons at an academy for many years, as a child/ tween/ teen. The owner of the academy was selling one of her horses, and I just couldn't bear that, because I was so incredibly bonded with the one that I rode, Querida. (I was told that her name meant "little sweetheart" in Spanish, but later found out that, more accurately, it actually meant "wanted," which was apropos!) I made an arrangement to buy the horse, and paid it off in babysitting/ child care sessions. (Nobody was going to buy the horse for me, so I had to use my ingenuity!) I love nature, and am in awe with the great outdoors. I have a special affinity for gardening. I grew up with two huge fruit/ vegetable gardens, along with several flower beds, herb gardens, and a greenhouse. The gardens were wonderfully sculpted visions to behold - measured out in painstaking accuracy, and tended to in minuscule detail. They bore great abundance, which was enjoyed all year long by my family, and also gifted to our friends/ neighbours.
For a few years in the early 2000s, I lived, and worked, in different regions of Italy. I have a new appreciation for vineyards/ wine making, olive oil, and balsamic vinegar production. I have been fortunate enough to enjoy what is regarded as the best in the world. I have also lived, and worked, in Japan for the better part of two decades. I'm very experienced with prized carp/ koi ponds.
(5) I care about the environment - this means that I recycle, and make my best effort to reduce my carbon footprint. I also use pet-safe/ natural cleaning products, which I'm going to guess that you have, since I already think of you as a responsible pet-caregiver. (For as long as I can remember, the word "owner" has made me squeamish when referring to pets because, in reality, they "own" us! I'm also not fond of the term "pet-parent." Guardian is more accurate, perhaps. The relationship is infinitely more important than the title, so I won't take offence to whichever term you prefer. The human-animal bond is a sacred, mystical one, in my experience, and I have much reverence for it.)
(6) I love going for a long walk, or hike, every day - if you have pets that need walking, you're in luck. I won't skip it. I also love walking in the rain. (This comes from years of living in The Pacific Northwest.)
(7) My friends, and family, call me "the queen of clean." You won't have to worry about the condition of your home. I can't stand clutter/ untidiness. I grew up with a mother that made us scrub the baseboards with a toothbrush every other Saturday morning - no cartoons for us!
(8) I won't bring other people into your home, nor onto your property - (pre-arranged service calls, deliveries, and true emergencies would be the only exception.) I won't be throwing wild parties. I'm looking for a space where I can have a quiet, peaceful existence, and concentrate on my many different projects. If your neighbours throw wild parties, please let me know. I wouldn't enjoy living near this kind of environment.
(9) I'll stay in your place every night. Your home won't be left vacant, and vulnerable. The benefits of this are clear - my presence will thwart off potential burglars/ vandals. In the event of a fire, flood, leaking/ broken pipe(s), I'll be there to deal with any emergencies. As a former employer of mine found out the hard way, many insurance companies reject claims if a property sits unoccupied for a specific amount of time, and/ or if they believe the property wasn't properly secured in the first place. I've lived alone for a long time. I'm used to diligently checking every door, and window multiple times. (I've had lots of jobs throughout my university career - one of them was in security. I'm well aware of how to secure a building/ property.) By having me there, you'll avoid this potential pitfall. Your plants will be cared for. Your pets will feel safe, and more secure, being in their usual, comfortable surroundings. I'll be there to look after them properly, and deal with any problems that may arise. Your family members (pets) won't have the additional stress of being carted off to a cattery, kennel, or boarding barn. I can assist you in practical ways by bringing in your mail/ newspapers/ parcels/ parcel notifications. Thus, making your place look lived in, and not having your personally identifiable information (mail) falling into the hands of a criminal.
(10) I want to propound something of great importance to me in this point - I have deep integrity. I care about my interactions with others on this planet. I truly believe that all that we have in this life - (in the final analysis) - is our name/ what we stand for. A person can lose everything else - your home, your health, your spouse, your family, your career, your possessions, your treasured belongings, your vehicle...but you don't lose your character. I want to give the next people that I house/ plant/ pet sit for a great experience. I want to be part of the reason that they have more joy in their life/ lives, and believe in people just a little bit more. (I know all too well the pain of being betrayed by those that I thought that I could count on. What I have learned in life is that complete strangers have, at times, been more helpful than people that I have known all of my life.....and then those complete strangers turned into great friends...with time. We should never prejudge a person, or situation, and we should be open to new experiences. As Peter Senge, of MIT Sloan School of Management, said: "Nothing alive stands still - either it is growing, and improving; or it is falling behind, and dying." Here's to positive, forward, uplifting growth, and movement.
Bonus point: I do not smoke/ vape, nor take drugs (illegal/ prescription) of any kind. I won't say that I'm a non-drinker, because I do enjoy the odd glass of good wine, but very rarely. When I lived in Italy, I enjoyed a lot of really great wines regularly.