Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Build a Fortress

I maybe should have given up blogging for lent... but since I didn't.

Last Thursday was our monthly women's club meeting. I look forward to getting together with these ladies every month because we always have so much fun together and like any good women's group, there is plenty of "hot off the press" gossip to go around. This month we mixed wine with the police. Don't you think that the wine tasting meeting is the best meeting to invite your neighborhood Sgt. to speak on safety?

Luckily for me I know some experts on the subject of wine and Ameila and Jeremy shared some of their favorites along with a generous donation of sample bottles. A very special thank you to you guys as it would not have been a proper wine tasting party without your advice and generosity!

When Sergeant Hutter entered he was greeted with bottles of tasting wines. I guess it was a good thing that we all lived close enough to "walk" home.
I was so impressed with the women in my neighborhood. Many of them were extremely knowledgeable on the subject of home security and I was amazed at the fortresses they had built. I learned so many helpful tips in order to feel more secure in my home. Owning a gun and setting an alarm are not the only things to consider in home safety. I agree with my husband and my in-laws that we should never live in fear, but that we do have to take the steps to protect ourselves. I decided to take advantage of our constables offer to visit our home for a free safety inspection and I would encourage you to do the same.
I know that motherhood has increased my sensitivity to my surroundings as I have to protect my son from harm as well as myself. On the days that I am home with him or the times where my husband is away on business, I never want to feel scared, but I will admit that sometimes that is the case. I am building a Fortress!

Are you living in a Fortress?

1. Where there is glass... Do you have double-key deadbolts? And you don't leave the key in the door? All it takes is for a person to break the glass, reach in and turn the knob or left key. Double points for moms with children who are of age to reach the lock.

2. Are you using 3 inch screws to secure your dead bolt plate? Even with a deadbolt, it is easy to break in if your frame is weak. 70% of all break-ins are from door-frame failure. The weakest point is almost always the lock strike plate that holds the latch in place. Standard industry screws are around 1 inch. Replace your strike plate and screws. Can you say Strike Master?

3. Is the outside of your house well-lit? Even if you cannot afford to have your electricity re-wired, they now make battery powered LED motion and light-sensor lights easy and inexpensive for your to install around your home.

4. Are your windows secured? Lock double-hung windows by sliding a bolt or nail into a hole drilled at a downward angle through the top of each sash and into a frame

5. Do you own a dog over 50 pounds? No need to bring home a new friend if you are not a pet-friendly home or if you are a lover of a smaller breed. Simply place a large water bowl or chew toy on your back porch or use a "Beware of Dog" sign on your fence. Chances are, they won't take a chance!

6. Is your constable on speed-dial? A lot of times the quickest responders are those that know your area the best and while 911 is what we all remember, your neighborhood constable should be on speed dial. Call on them for anything suspicious. A nosey neighbor is your best friend!

7. Do you have an activated alarm? Set your alarm even while at home during the afternoon. Most break-ins occur between the hours of 9am and 2pm. Did you know that some alarm companies can give you a "panic" button to place on your keychain? If you cannot afford an alarm system, you can always purchase the sign on ebay!

8. Do you secure and unsecure your child's carseat while car doors are locked and closed? This is one of my faults. Most women are attacked between 5am - 8am while they are getting ready to go to work and are paying attention to preparing for the day rather than their surroundings. Moms have an added distraction and I know I hang out of the car while securing the carseat. NOT ANYMORE. When getting into the car we go in together and I use my arm strength to fasten him in the back and then when getting out of the car I release the carseat and we exit the car together going straight from garage to house. It is a pain, but what in motherhood isn't? wink!

9. Do you always acknowledge the door when someone knocks? I know your mother always taught you to never go to the door for people you don't know. I used to think that if I stayed quiet the person (usually selling something) would think no one was home and just go away. Acknowledge the door. Burglars do not want you to be home! No one said you had to open the door. I simply tell the salesperson no thank you behind the door after yelling at the dog to stand back!

10. Do you own a door security bar? I bought one for each door and one for my brother's apartment. Sgt. Hutter suggested a Masterlock Door Security Bar that you can buy at home depot for around $19. If installed properly, the only thing breaking down your door is a bulldozer!
Have any safety tips to share? Let's all built a Fortress together. Knowledge is power. Protect yourselves and your families!


  1. Idea for a maroon and white yard sign: "This home protected by a Fighting Texas Aggie. Feeling lucky, punk?"

  2. Love Bills comment! You go Bill!
    xoxo I'm glad you are there to protect my daughter!