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Keep an Eye on Your Home from Anywhere with These Gadgets

Categories: Blog | Posted: December 31, 2019

It’s vacation time! You’ve spent weeks planning the trip and double-checked your packing list. But on your way to the airport, you have a moment of panic. Did you close the garage door? Did you turn all the lights off? That gnawing feeling won’t go away, even if you’re sure you took care of everything.

Isn’t that feeling the worst? Luckily, we’re in the age of technology, where the ability to monitor your home remotely is as simple as opening up a smartphone app. Even if you’re gone for just a few hours, now you can check up on your home, your backyard, and even your pets from anywhere. These home automation gadgets can help you monitor everything in your home, no matter how many miles away you’re traveling.


You’re probably already familiar with Ring. It’s a smart video doorbell that records activity near whichever door it faces. You can watch it in real-time or be alerted to activity when USP delivers a package, when girl scouts come knocking, or even when strangers walk up to your door. This clever doorbell also has the option for you to speak to people at your door through the app.

Remote Pet Monitors

Ever wondered what your cat or dog gets up to during the day? You can keep an eye on your pets from anywhere with pet monitors like Nest, Furbo, and TOOGE dog cam. Set them up in high-traffic areas throughout your home to keep tabs on what your pet is doing. These are great for highly anxious pets or for those who jump onto places they’re not allowed (counters, couches, you name it!).

Remote Light Control

Controlling lights today is so much more sophisticated than just a few years ago. We’ve replaced clapping (do you remember those lights?) with high-tech apps that work with smart light switches to remotely control different lights inside or outside your house. You could be halfway across the world and still be able to turn lights on or off strategically inside your home. This is perfect for when you’re away on an extended vacation and don’t want your house looking vacant.

Security Apps

Security smartphone apps allow you to monitor your security system remotely. If it detects any unusual activity, you’ll be alerted right away and can opt to send the police over to check it out. Most security systems today have an app connected to your system so you can arm it, disarm it, or check on its status day or night from anywhere.

 Fully Connected Smart Home Options

Each of these options allows you to control a specific function in your house, like adjusting the outdoor lights or monitoring your cats and dogs. If you’re looking to fully automate all these functions and bring them into one system….now you can. Automation systems like Kasa Home, Google Home, or the Amazon Echo allow you to connect multiple smart devices in one place and operate them all from a single dashboard. You can control lights, speaker systems, TVs and screens, even your window blinds or refrigerator for a truly smart home.

So breathe a sigh of relief the next time you’re out of town for a few days. With home automation gadgets like these, you can check in on your home, turn off the lights you forgot to hit on your way out, and relax knowing you’re protected.

Top 5 Pet-Friendly Plants to Spruce Up Your Home

Categories: Blog | Posted: December 10, 2019

Vibrant, hardy plants brighten any space and have the added benefit of purifying the air in your home. Bringing in vibrant greenery can also add a splash of color to any space. But there’s a hidden danger lurking in household plants for animals: Some plants are toxic to pets, like aloe or branching ivy. Don’t worry; there are still plenty of options for cat and dog lovers. Here are five of our favorite pet-friendly indoor plants.

  1. Parlor Palm

We promised you a list of pet-friendly AND easy-to-manage plants, so we’re starting with the parlor palm. Pet owners who love the look of a small tree in their home will appreciate this non-toxic palm. Better yet, it’s extremely easy to care for, so beginners can enjoy the benefits of the parlor palm without fussing over it too much. There are actually a few other types of palms that are perfectly suited for pet-friendly homes, so explore your options here!

  1. Christmas Cactus

These succulents are easy to care for and are non-toxic to all pets. These spiny plants bloom during the coldest days of winter, making them a festive plant that adds a pop of color to the room even when the weather outside is frightful.

  1. Friendship Plant

This fuzzy green plant is sure to put a smile on your face – and your pets’ too! It’s easy to divide and share this fast-growing plant, which is where it got its name. So share this plant to your heart’s content with your friends, especially those with curious, furry friends at home.

  1. Spider Plant

Don’t let the name throw you. You’re not bringing ANOTHER animal into your home when you purchase a spider plant. These pretty plants are hardy and grow quickly, and the long tendrils add a nice decorating touch to your room. You’ll probably want to hang this plant for two reasons: The spider plant sprouts long, dangling shoots that need the space, and if it’s not high enough, your cat may pounce thinking it’s a toy.

  1. Calathea (or Prayer Plant)

Last but not least is the stunningly beautiful Calathea! It has lovely red, cream, and green leaves that position themselves toward the sun during the day and curl up at night. These plants are perfect for small spaces you want to brighten up, and they’re incredibly easy to grow. And – of course – they are perfectly safe for your dogs and cats.

There are plenty of other pet-friendly plants that didn’t make our list, but it’s always better to err on the side of caution when bringing plants into your new home. Besides causing a tummy ache, some innocent-looking indoor plants are downright deadly to your furry family members. But don’t let your dog or cat stop you from benefitting from indoor plants! There are so many wonderful ways you can decorate your home with these beautiful green plants.

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