This post is for all the homebodies, introverts, homebirds and Stay Home Club members out there.
I like the outside. I like walks in the sunshine and shopping trips and coffee dates and cocktails and a bit of drinking and dancing now and again. I'm not a complete bore, but I am most definitely a homebody. I'm happy to spend an afternoon (nay, a weekend) pottering around the house - doing the washing, baking, cooking, meal prepping, having a long, leisurely bath - sitting in the garden, tending to my houseplants, reading and netflixing to my heart's content. While I do love getting out and about and experiencing life, It's important to me that I have somewhere warm, cosy, safe and happy to come back to afterwards. It will come as absolutely no shock to anyone that I love making my home environment pretty, and honestly, it's probably because I spend most of my time there.
So if you're reading this and nodding along, and maybe thinking about where you should put up some shelves next in order to display your *aesthetically pleasing* books; or adding the ingredients to that divine-looking sourdough recipe to your basket; or settled in for the night on the sofa under a blanket; I've compiled a list of these awesome, homebody friendly gadgets that I think you need.
oh, and a little ps - none of these products were *gifted* to me for this blog post (the Google Home was free when we bought our Google phones, but that was a deal available to all customers and is not affiliated in any way with these posts) I just think they're fab and we use them daily.
Remote Control Plugs
Wow. Let's just watch that gif a few times because that shit is MAGICAL. I came to discover these things existed because as far as I am concerned, fairy lights in the bedroom is an absolute essential. We barely ever use The Big Light (why is it even there, really?) and instead have a little lamp, and fairy lights around the bed for pre-sleep reading and (realistically) phone browsing.
However, fairy lights don't tend to come with switches, and turning them off and on can often require some complex acrobatics: reaching behind drawers, or leaning/falling out of bed and wrenching the plug from the socket. Not exactly conducive to a zen, restful bedtime routine. I knew I needed something to let me switch off only that plug but I didn't know what it was, so I turned to Martin, King of Gadgets, to brave Amazon and make what I was looking for exist. And he delivered.
Now, we just plug our (multitude) of fairy lights into these things, and use a fancy lil remote to turn them off and on!!!! Life changing.
We were lucky enough to be given a free one of these when we pre-ordered our Google Pixel 2 phones last year, but the Google Home Minis are pretty cheap, anyway. The Google Home is Google's offering to the smart home gadget world and it has become part of our routine. Whilst it can't add things to your Amazon basket, ahem Alexa ahem, I think it's actually a little cooler than Amazon's offering. We use it regularly to check the weather whilst we get ready for work, she connects to our google calendars and reads us our reminders, I use it daily to set timers whilst I'm cooking, but the coolest and most homebody friendly feature, I think, is that you can add recipes to your Google Home app, and she freaking reads them out to you step by step.
Obviously, Google Home products work best if you have an android phone, as it can sync up with all the google apps, but living with a Google fanboy (we also have a google Chromecast) this is the best system that works for us!
This was a techy, nerdy find by Martin. He likes to spend a lot of his down time at his computer, gaming or just browsing, so being the sensible kind of guy he is, he picked up an ergonomic chair to keep his back healthy, and some LED strips for behind his monitor to keep his eyes healthy. The idea is that a backlight behind the screen you're staring at is better for your eyes when you're sitting in the dark. So naturally, when we wall-mounted the TV, we got some for there, too. I wasn't too sure at first - I was worried it would look too techy and Tony Stark-y, but when Martin showed me that it was just two tiny strips of LED that stick onto the back of your screen, and the colours can be adjusted, I was on board.
Now I'm not interested in a colour-changing Christmas light cacophony going on behind there, but I do like the flush of warm light behind the screen. It plugs into your TV so they turn on when you turn on your TV, so no faffing with plugs and switches, and I can adjust the colour from green to orange to purple to white. From an *aesthetic* standpoint, I do actually really like how it looks, especially in the cosy darkness of the evenings, and I think it adds a lil bit of cinematic-ness for those movie nights!
I am a super paranoid person. I find it hard to hang out alone at home because every creak is somebody coming to kill me. And worse, when I'm out of the house today, I will suddenly be overcome with the fear that somebody is burgling our house right now and nobody is going to notice or stop them omg!!!! So last Christmas, to put my poor worried mind at ease, we picked up an Arlo Home Security camera in the Black Friday sales. We are most definitely not made of money, so we chose Arlo for a few reasons -
- the software is free to use for up to 5 cameras before you need to pay a subscription fee
-it is motion sensing, meaning it only records when it detects movement, which saves us buying expensive, obscure batteries on the regular.
- it was in the sale!
It comes with an app that lets us set it when we leave the house/go to bed, and gives me a hell of a lot of peace of mind. Not only that, but you can open the app and check up on the cameras *live* whenever you like - so if I ever get a streak of paranoia (oh no, what if the cameras aren't working for some unprobable reason and we are in fact being burgled RIGHT NOW) - I can just open up the app and reassure myself that no, look, there is the front door and there is my sofa and my dining table and everything is fine. And I can go about the rest of my day. This might not apply to all homebody type people, but certainly for this paranoid person, it's been a godsend.