Whittle and Daughter House-Sitting Services


Planning a family holiday this summer?

Worried about what might happen to your house while you’re on the beach? Well, worry no more because Whittle and Daughter House-Sitting Services are here to help. We take house-sitting to a whole new level.

To illustrate our innovative approach to customer service, and our dedication to going the extra mile, some highlights of our recent house-sitting engagement in Brighton:

On day one, we arrived at the property shortly before bedtime, so we had a quick dinner (setting off the fire alarm in the process) and Flea went to bed in the room with white walls, white floors, white bedding and white blankets. And then had the sort of nosebleed that makes Nightmare on Elm Street look restrained.

The next morning, while I was unpacking, Flea watched a DVD, and it got stuck. The DVD player had to be disassembled (using a combination of scissors, hair clips, keys and profanity, since I didn’t know where the screwdrivers might be) to remove the disk, and then gave up the ghost, refusing to turn on again.

That night, I decided to watch a bit of TV, what with the DVD player being broken and all. The Sky+ box wouldn’t start. By the time the home-owner texted me to say it could sometimes be a bit slow, but there were lots of movies on there I could watch, I’d completely reset (and wiped) the Sky+ box to try and get it working.

Our key responsibility as house-sitters was the feeding of the cat, and the fish. The cat, Chloe, was terrified of Flea, who has decided she no longer wants a cat but a hamster because, “they won’t run away when I try to stroke them”.

For a few days, all went well with the fish. Crucially, none of them died.  Then one day we noticed, suddenly, the fish tank was only half-full with water. And the pump was making a strange noise. And there was a faint smell of burning.

Using all the expertise gathered from exactly zero years of fish ownership, I quickly topped up the tank with a bucket of water, and put some towels around the tank to soak up the murky water that was escaping from somewhere, then texted the home owner who said, under no circumstances just put water in the tank. Oops.

So we finished our stay with the faint smell of bleach pervading the house, some slightly stained bed linen, a broken DVD player and Sky+ box, and some fish being slowly poisoned by a bucket of tap water.

Oh yes, I see a flourishing career ahead of us. 



Sally is a full-time blogger and founder of the Tots100, Trips100, Foodies100 and HIBS100 communities, along with the MAD Blog Awards. She spends a bit too much time on the Internet. She’s also a very happy Mum to Flea, the world’s coolest ten year old.

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  1. Domestic goddesque
    7th August 2011 / 11:03 am

    This is the funniest thing I have read in a long time: thanks for lifting my oppressive mood 🙂

  2. 7th August 2011 / 10:40 am

    Not so bad at least the house was still standing. So anyway, did you have a nice holiday ……

  3. 7th August 2011 / 10:40 am

    Hahaha, brilliant! I’m going away for a short holiday soon – I’ll speak to you when I get back 😉

  4. 7th August 2011 / 11:29 am

    What? We could TOTALLY house-sit in Israel…

  5. Jen @ Suburban Mum
    7th August 2011 / 11:45 am

    Oh dear, that did make me laugh (sorry!). I once house sat for my boss for a week and managed to break the oven door off and also broke the shower screen and managed to lock myself in her bathroom for about an hour, making myself late for work. Never again!

  6. 7th August 2011 / 12:30 pm

    I do hope that was a good friend…
    I have a holiday coming up I’d like to book you for… 2092 – are you free?

  7. susie@newdaynewlesson
    7th August 2011 / 3:13 pm

    BUT, you had loads of fun.

  8. Chuckalicious
    7th August 2011 / 9:24 pm

    That is brilliant (for us, not you!). Are the owners still speaking to you? 🙂 as a previous fish peer, as soon as I read you’d put a bucket of water in I did cringe! Ouch. Poor fish.
    But we all learn 🙂

  9. Lorraine The Party Times
    7th August 2011 / 9:28 pm

    Sure it could have been worse – no animal deaths (yet!) and no fires and house still standing!!!
    Seriously very comical post!

  10. 8th August 2011 / 6:43 am

    I just think it’s a cool post because I have a photo of Hove seafront somewhere.

  11. 8th August 2011 / 9:31 pm

    seriously nothing I just read put me off.
    My dog is a loon, no one will look after her – you and flea sound like you would get on like a house on fire.
    you free thursday?