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Monthly archive

January 2013

Installing a Keyless Deadbolt Lock

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schlage door lock keypad deadboltSome of you may live in cities or towns where locking your doors is a requirement. This means another key to carry around or possibly lose. And if you have kids coming home from school (latchkey kids), then they need keys too. Today I installed a Schlage keyless deadbolt on our front door. It was really way too easy and now lost or missing keys are a thing of the past.

Super Easy Toilet Clog Fix

Average: 4.3 (3 votes)

toilet boy cute babyAs a follow up to a prior article on unclogging drains, I wanted to share this simple method for clearing plugged toilets. Now I’ve taken a lot of crap over the years about this topic, and I wish somebody had just told me about this fix 20 years ago. From a very early age both of my boys have had “issues” using the toilet. One believes there is no such thing as using too much toilet paper, and the other must have a colon shaped like a Pringles can – OMG. And the only thing that has changed over the years is they are now older, bigger, and still being a pain in the commode. Now on to the easiest fix you’ll ever find…

Exercising Your Kid's Brain

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brain exercise study puzzles xrayWe all went bowling today for my oldest son’s 23rd birthday. Not necessarily cliff diving on the thrill-o-meter, but it’s what he wanted to do as a family. A surprising fact came up during our little “festival of the gutter ball”. He said that he has never been to a bowling alley that did not have automated score keeping. He has never kept score by hand or had to calculate how to process strikes or spares himself. He literally did not understand the process but has bowled numerous times and was once even in a league. This got me thinking about all the ways our kids are not exercising their brains. Here are some thoughts for you to help keep them on their toes…..

Benefits of Volunteering

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volunteer helping charity handsWhen our children were quite young (not toddlers), we made a concerted effort to provide them with multiple opportunities for volunteering. Originally our intent was to make it a family-oriented activity and to instill a sense of caring and sharing. But somewhere along the way to raising our boys into adulthood, we discovered that we gained much more than we gave. Let me show you some of the hidden benefits of volunteering….

Using a Solar Charger for your RV or Camper

Average: 3.7 (3 votes)

Battery camping solar charger

We like to camp. It started in Arizona when my wife and I were just dating (young, dumb, and broke). Our level of funding and experience dictated throwing a tent and supplies into the SUV and heading up into the mountains. We have since progressed on to a popup trailer, and now own a small Hybrid camper - although at 25 feet long some may disagree that it is small or “camping”. We park it at our Christmas Tree farm and have our own private campsite there too. The problem is we have no power or utilities way back at the camp. So I decided to set up a solar charging station to keep the camper batteries fully charged. Here’s how…..

The Art of Washing Dishes

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dad dish washing soap sudsThis past week our automatic dishwasher broke down. Between all the normal busy stuff and my severe lack of mechanical abilities, it took a week to get repaired. Nothing overly complicated once I tore it apart – just a split drain hose. However in the mean time it meant we had to go old-school with regards to doing dishes. For some of you this is a no brainer. For others (like my kids) it was new and uncharted territory to navigate. I’ll share with you the art of washing dishes by hand as taught to me by my grandmother. The bonus is the magic that occurred over this week…..

Home Made Motorcycle Lift

Average: 4.1 (10 votes)

Every motorcycle owner knows that if you want to do any work on your road bike, even something as simple as changing the oil, it’s nearly impossible to keep the bike upright and stable. Even worse, on my Kawasaki Vulcan 900, the oil level sight glass is way down at the very bottom of the engine casings next to the shift lever. Absolutely freaking impossible to hold the bike upright while you’re bent over trying to see the oil level in the window. I have no idea how the Harley riders or other Cruisers do this either. Let me show you how to build a home-made bike lift for next to nothing and it works like a charm….

Dad's New Action Cam

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skateboarding dad nerdChristmas is all over and you’ve probably already forgotten what gifts you found underneath the tree. Socks, underwear and a sweater are just not that exciting anymore, right? Well my wife bought me the perfect gift this year – an action camera. You know, one of those little video cameras to film yourself skateboarding, snowboarding, skydiving…all the thrill seeking adventures all of us busy dads do in our unlimited spare time. …well sort of. Let me take you on a quick tour of my latest digital toy…..

Creating A Better Password

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PasswordIf you’re like me you probably have passwords for nearly everything.  Work email; home email; online forums; banking; ebay; twitter; Facebook; and dozens of others.  As a parent (and a busy one – right) you need to make sure that the cute little techno wizard you’ve raised doesn’t hack into your PC and start using or viewing stuff that you’d rather keep secure.  A good password is important, but a great password is even better.  Here are some hints and tips for you to create secure passwords.....

Beat the Cold with These Fun (And Different!) Snow Day Ideas

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The score is Snow 1, School 0.  Your kids are thrilled because Mother Nature has given them yet another snow day.  But you’ve already made snowmen, gone sledding, and watched movies on all of those OTHER snow days.

Trust me, your choices are not limited to frostbite and snotcycles, check out these ideas for some snow day entertainment and avoid the dread "Dad, I'm Booooored!"