November 23, 2018 AsktheBuilder Newsletter
Did you just subscribe? Welcome and let me tell you now this is a pretty strange issue of my newsletter. Hang in there.
Old friend or newer subscriber? You're going to LOVE this issue. If not, reply and tell me why. March through the entire thing as there's great stuff here the day after Thanksgiving.
I'm a little groggy writing this as I didn't get a good night's sleep last night. It's now just after sunrise here on a bitter cold New Hampshire morning. Brilliant sunshine is pouring into my man cave, but it's only 9 F.
Last night just after 2 am, I hear a knuckle rapping on my bedroom door.
"Dad! Dad! Get up!"
My son was talking in a hushed voice and I got up from a deep sleep and was groggy.
Opening the door, "What's going on?"
"Dad, are both cats in the bedroom?"
We have two indoor cats, both of them are pretty special as they're a mix of domestic and wild cats. With a fog swirling inside my head, I couldn't quite figure out why at 2 am in the morning it was important to know that.
Quickly I open the door enough to let light in and I see both cats in the bedroom. I then went out into the hallway as I could see my son was pretty upset. He had an unusual wild-eyed look.
"What's going on?"
"Dad, the front door was wide open!"
Sure enough, the hallway was cold. The floor was damn cold. The choke in my brain had just been pushed in and I was starting to think more clearly.
The previous 24 hours had been windy as an arctic cold front was our Thanksgiving gift. Temperatures were in the single digits overnight and the wind chill was below zero.
But going to bed, I remember the wind had pretty much died down.
Was there a burglar inside? Had my son scared him as he came up the steps?
We decided to go room by room and clear the house. I should have grabbed my Sig 9mm from the bedroom, but didn't. We live in a rural part of New Hampshire and there's a raging opioid epidemic that's causing personal devastation and increased crime. Burglaries and break-ins are now as common as loons on the lakes.
We went into every room, opened every closet, looked behind all the shower curtains. We looked everyplace we could think of where someone might be hiding. Nothing.
I decided to go out the front door to see if there were any footprints in the dusty snow on the driveway. Once again, nothing. I needed to get back in as I had gone out barefoot.
"Dad, could the wind have opened the door? It just doesn't seem possible. Look how tight the weatherstripping is."
I tested the door and it did take moderate effort to get it open once the latch was out of the keeper.
We said goodnight and I went back into the bedroom. But I was wired and awake. Kathy wanted to know what was going on and I told her.
My mind was whirling as I lay in bed.
It's damn possible a burglar did try to get in but got scared off.
Maybe I should go look next door as my neighbors, their house is the first down the driveway, are gone for Thanksgiving and maybe the burglar went first to their house and left footprints in the light snow on their drive.
Then in hit me like a bolt out of the blue.
The motion sensors on my Ring floodlight cam and the Ring doorbell would have captured the movement of the wretched burglar!
Each time anything moves in front of either device it records video and creates an event on my app.
I sprung up out of bed like I was sitting on a spring and fired up my phone. Here's what I saw:
The timestamp in the red oval says it all. That's where the motion detector saw me go out the front door in my Monty Python PJs, t-shirt, and bad hair with bare feet. If I had clicked that gray arrowhead to the right I could have watched video of myself. I'll spare you that imagery.
The red arrow points to the last time anyone was on the front porch. That was me on Thanksgiving morning going outdoors with my STIHL electric leaf blower to blast off the dusting of snow on the front porch and sidewalk.
I decided to go share this intel with my son and it's a damn good thing I did.
I proceed to walk down the steps to his bedroom and there he was at the bottom of the steps with his loaded AR-15 in his hands. He was ready to take out the intruder.
Little did I know that he was very freaked out thinking that there was still a burglar in the house hiding.
"Guess what? Our opens in a new windowRING doorbell camera and motion detector has the proof that no one was here. It was obviously a gust of wind that blew open the door."
He looked at the screenshot and gave out a sigh of relief.
"There was no way I was going to bed. I was going to wait until you got up at sunrise."
"Well, now you can put the safety back on and get some rest."
I'm so glad I have the RING doorbell and floodlight cam.
If you want PEACE OF MIND like I now have, I URGE you to opens in a new windowCLICK HERE and skim over my review. Click any of the links in my review to purchase your own RING doorbell or floodlight.
If you're worried about one of your kids or your parents who might live alone, this is a fantastic gift that allows YOU to view what's going on outside their home should you want to make sure they're safe.
$9.99 Stocking Stuffer - Save Your Keister!
While on the topic of saving yourself and having some peace of mind, you're going to LOVE the Christmas stocking stuffer I have for you today.
Remember, I promised to find ones that were $15 or less.
Here's the list of the previous Christmas stocking stuffers in case you missed them. Great photos are at each page:
And now for this issue's idea. It's just $9.99!!
You can roll up a $20, $50, or $100 bill and have it on your keychain or in your pocket should you lose your wallet or purse.
opens in a new windowCLICK HERE and read the story about the time I HAD TO HAVE CASH with me.
Trust me, one day you're going to need CASH and you'll thank your lucky stars you bought several of the cash capsules.
Shopping on Black Friday?
If you're shopping at Amazon today or this weekend, consider helping me if any advice of mine has helped you over the past year.
When you shop at Amazon.com using my link to get there, I get a tiny part of each purchase. It doesn't increase your price. All that happens is Jeff Bezos gives me part of the profit he was going to keep for himself.
opens in a new windowCLICK HERE to get started shopping at Amazon.com. You need to click the link on the page you'll land so I keep Amazon.com happy. They don't like me sending you there directly from the newsletter.
Sue Your Builder or Contractor?
Have you ever filed a lawsuit against your builder or a contractor because he screwed you in any number of ways?
If so, would you be kind enough to HELP ME?
Remember, I only need help from you if you went through the motions of filing a LAWSUIT. I don't care if you settled or went to trial.
PLEASE complete this simple survey and feel free to VENT once more, unless it's too painful.
That's quite enough for the Friday after Thanksgiving.
I'll be taking a nap today for sure.
Do It Right, Not Over!
P.S. THANKS SO MUCH for being a subscriber. I thought about you yesterday. Creating this newsletter is one of the things I look forward to each week.