We were living in southern Virginia. The kids and I bought a small three bedroom house one mile from where I worked as a forklift driver in a large plant. As part of the moving in excitement, I bought each of my three kids something they really wanted. For my son, it was a new bike. I should have known the neighborhood was a problem when his brand new bike was in our back yard and was not there in the morning. We had only been there a week and there was a really good fence with a lock on the gate. The police said oh well, this happens all the time. Huh, who knew.
Our first three day holiday there we went camping. When we returned from the camping trip there was a note on our front door requesting we call the police. As soon as we entered the front door we knew why. The TV and the reel to reel and the microwave were not where they were when we left. But the sight that was most disturbing to my kids was every cupboard was opened and everything spilled out. Every drawer in all of our rooms was thrown around and clothing thrown everywhere. It looked like a great huge big clothes vomit had occurred. All four beds were torn apart and mattresses removed. My older daughter who was a pre-teen at the time was so upset because her clothes and her underwear were pawed through by a stranger. She was frightened and I was relieved she was able to verbalize it to me and we worked through it. A window at the back of the house had the screen rolled up and the window broken. The police had done a temporary fix on the window after they took fingerprints.
Not surprisingly, as sympathetic as the local police were, they were quick to advise not to expect to recover any of the items. My jewelry box, each of the kids TVs and their small radios were gone. The homeowners insurance covered the loss but the price to replace all the electronics that were taken was not what was paid to me.
So we did some adjusting to secure the windows and had family talks often and moved on. Three months later we were pretty much over the trauma of the incident and went camping again on a three day weekend. Guess what? It happened again. No note from the police this time though. The windows were not obviously disturbed this time and the house looked fine. All the new TVs and stereos and microwave were again gone. The only difference was the house had not been ransacked.
The next weekend I put the house on the market and when it sold I bought a house in a different neighborhood, a little farther from work but still close enough to get home if the kids needed me.
Three day weekends remind me of the two burglaries and how they did not change our lives. We still went camping. We incorporated some better burglary deterrents at the next house and considered the two burglaries as a good learning experience. What else can you do?