Starting out with Philips Hue Lights & Google Home

One of the best new features of Google Home is the ability to use it to control your smart home devices, like smart Philips Hue lighting.

For those who are still learning about this new device, Google Home is a smart speaker and digital assistant that can also be used to control a variety of gadgets in your home by simply asking. Google Home is controlled merely by saying, “OK Google,” followed by a command. Continue reading “Starting out with Philips Hue Lights & Google Home”

How to talk to Philips Hue & Google Home

We’ve been looking at just how easy it can be to run smart gadgets in your house using Google Home. Philips Hue lights are one of the compatible systems that work with Google Home allowing you to ‘talk’ to your smart Hue lights. Here’s exactly how to talk to your Google Home and Philips Hue bulbs. Continue reading “How to talk to Philips Hue & Google Home”

Camping Gear: 4 of the coolest tents

Camping technology has come a long way. Fabrics are thinner and more waterproof, and most gear is lighter than ever before. There’s also some crazy design innovations when it comes to tents. These are the coolest tents I have on my must-have list. Continue reading “Camping Gear: 4 of the coolest tents”

New Playbulb Candle S; now rechargeable & brighter

It’s been HOT where I live. Really, bakingly hot.  The kind of heat where you don’t want to turn on the oven for dinner, or even boil water. Lighting candles is out of the question. Despite the fact that some subtle flickering ambiance is nice, adding anything that says ‘heat’ is not happening. That’s why I love Playbulb’s new electronic candles, Candle S. Continue reading “New Playbulb Candle S; now rechargeable & brighter”

Need Samsung accessories? These are perfect for the new Galaxy S8+

The Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+ have been out for a while now, and to go with it, there’s plenty of new Galaxy-ready gear.  Whether you need a proper case, charging cables or other accessories, there are some new options from different companies.

Samsung Accessories – Cool Cases from Olixar

Olixar makes a variety of smartphone accessories for Samsung phones.  From ultra thin cases that are barely there, to ones that are durable and drop-proof, there’s a case to fit every need and situation. My personal favourite for the new Galaxy S8+ is the clear soft plastic version that’s super slim and barely there.  It lets me admire the slim stylings of the phone itself.

Samsung Accessories -Handy Colourful Cables by Ventev

ventev colour charging cable  colorI absolutely love colourful charging cables. Not only are they interesting and different, it’s easy to locate yours among everyone else’s at the office or airport. These cables are available in 3.3 or 6 foot lengths which is extra long too, meaning you’re not going to be tied to the wall while you’re waiting for your phone to recharge.

I love the candy colours available and the flat profile means they wrap easily and don’t tangle.

Ventev also makes handy screen protectors for the Galaxy S8 as well as power and charging options too. I’ve found their gear to be well built and durable in previous tests.

Samsung Accessories – Extra Power from Belkin

belkin power bank charger pink color colour bestRoad tripping means you need in-car power. I recently had a chance to sample some new Belkin gear for my Galaxy S8+. I fell in love with the Home and Car Charging kit that comes with a cable, wall plug and car power adapter.  It was super handy to have all my charging options covered in one package.

I also absolutely love Belkin’s rose gold brushed aluminum power bank. The MIXIT Metallic Power Pack 6600 is powerful and attractive, giving you the ability to charge two devices at once. This was super handy while I was camping, since I could juice up mine and my husband’s smartphones in my daypack. The 6600 mA battery will charge a smartphone three times over, and can also charge your tablet. It doesn’t matter what phone you have, the USB plugs let you plug in anything that needs power.

As I adapt to life in the Samsung Galaxy/Android world, I’m finding these new accessories invaluable.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tree tents – Reviewing Tentsile Connect suspension tent

I’d first seen this futuristic space age style tent on someone’s Instagram post. It was slung in an impossibly strange place hovering over a body of water, strapped inexplicably to some trees. It was a tent, but looked like a type of hovering spacecraft. I had to know more about what this crazy contraption was.

I learned eventually that what I saw was a Tensile tent and ever since I’ve been dying to give one a try. Continue reading “Tree tents – Reviewing Tentsile Connect suspension tent”

Google Home Review – what a digital assistant can do for you

Typing is for chumps.

Savvy techies today are talking to their devices, using their voices to interact with technology, rather than typing commands into a web browser online. You’ll see it in a series of new smart home digital assistants; Amazon’s Echo (not yet available in Canada) Apple’s soon-to-be-revealed Home, and of course Google’s Home device is now available in Canada. Continue reading “Google Home Review – what a digital assistant can do for you”

How to set up smart lights & home control with Google Home

Google Home is a super smart home automation portal that works with just your voice commands. While it can play music and answer trivia questions, and much more (Read Erin’s review of the device here) it can also be used to automate and control smart home gadgets. Here’s how to get smart home devices connected with Google Home. Continue reading “How to set up smart lights & home control with Google Home”

Hunting the elusive Haskap berry

I wrote this article for CityPalate Magazine this summer after trying to find these elusive berries. Have a read. -Erin

“Have you seen any of these?” Like a culinary detective hunting an elusive suspect, I flash a photo at a clerk at the market. “Sorry, no.” I try again next door. “I’m looking for these. Know who’s got any?” “Can’t help you.”

I get similar reactions from people all over the market until I run out of fruit stands. Yes, fruit stands. I’m looking for a berry, and though it’s said to be one of the most prolific in Alberta and western Canada, I’m met with inquisitive looks every time I ask about it. Continue reading “Hunting the elusive Haskap berry”