Dumber Smart Home

Who doesn’t like shiny new things? Right? Well, I certainly do. And I can’t really afford it all. On top of that, I am also not really the person that renews their iPhone each year or has to get the latest of the latest. It’s nice if it was possible, but I am very much so content with what I have. To top that, I try to take (good) care of the shiny stuff that I do have so it dies from wear and tear, not from neglect. Well, my old apartment isn’t the smartest one. And with that I mean: It doesn’t really have shiny (new) tech things. Until this year.

Throughout the years I have tried to pick devices, technology, and the internet of things stuff, that match what I do daily. And that means if I am not mobile, social, and going to friends, I don’t really need a laptop. I pick a good working desktop device and make the most of it. And invest in a good working iPhone that is my travel buddy. And with a nice desktop and modern streaming services, I haven’t felt the need for a fancy flatscreen tv. In fact, I haven’t had a television in my apartment since 2007 or something. My eyes are sensitive to light, and I regret not getting something like Philips Hue light bulbs sooner.

This year, 2022, I’ve worked hard to get my apartment back to a place where it feels more like my apartment, a modern version of it, and doing my best to keep it clean. Why? Well, so I am happier in this little bubble of a world I am constantly in. It might take away the feeling that I have to move to some deserted island to start over. I mean, that’s just moving my troubles and problems. It doesn’t resolve anything. I can be happier in life right here, and invest and make the effort to achieve that. So I’ve started to budget. Putting money aside. Creating to-do lists in my head, and wishlists on the computer, have discussions with some friends. And now it’s almost December, with 2023 around the corner. And I can look back now and feel like I have made progress.

The apartment had the toilet-, and bathroom renovated. I’ve worked on my kitchen and living room so my daily life felt nicer. I’ve used both opportunities to move items from my wishlist to my to-do list and to use that budget for the short-, and long-term improvement of the whole of the apartment. I’ve fixed my washing machine, I’ve moved things around to create space, I’ve moved all my lights to smart lights, I’ve hired people to help me fix up some stuff that I can’t do alone, and I’ve hired people to come and help with some cleaning. And I’ve fixed my vacuum cleaner, and even bought some quality-improving devices that are smart, such as an air-fryer, humidifier, robot vacuum, air filter device, .. stuff like that. They help me improve the air quality, keep things cleaner, and let me cook differently, and hopefully healthier.

I am only mentioning this because while these are normal things for some or a bit of overkill to others, I could spend ten minutes explaining why it means a lot to me. And since I am the one living here 24/7, I kinda feel like I don’t have to explain myself. Anyway. Baby steps toward comfort, convenience, modern tech, and a happier and healthier life. I think that’s worth a little bit of money. And thanks to the suggestions of my online community friends, and my family. And the help of others who came to help clean a bit and fix up some stuff. I am good in taking those next steps so I get to that point.

Especially after the last decade, or maybe specifically, the last four years.

Knowing ahead of time what I want on my wishlist. I have been keeping track of online reviews, people with experiences, and prices. And gave some stuff some time to settle down in my head in regards to ‘do I really want this? Even if I don’t need-need it?’ And now with Black Friday weekend in a few days, the deals have been flowing in. When the discount is more than average and ridiculous enough, I take my budget and invest in that comfort, convenience, and all that.

At least all the lights are led now, and I’ve used deals to try and get smart lights for most rooms that I use. This way I can also save long-term on the energy bill by having them behave a bit smarter. I’ve invested in a cheap pack of smart plugs that allow me to turn off devices that are plugged in, used incidentally, but don’t have to be on standby 24/7. To fight dust in the apartment I am about to buy an air purifier/filter and to fight dry air, I’ve got myself a good enough humidifier. The fixed vacuum cleaner is wireless, and less noisy now. So I can get into corners and do a better job. I got myself a better Swiffer last year semi-cheap, so I can mop the floor a bit easier. And now the Ecovacs vacuum robot does a daily vacuum, mobs once or twice a week, and deep cleans with higher settings once every weekend.

All these smart thingies I’ve hooked up in their apps made some Siri shortcuts and such, so they can still work with HomeKit, and I even found out the air fryer had wifi on it. Haha.

So, my stupid apartment is doing a lot better, and while it’s not the latest or ‘bestest’ tech, it’s what helps me, what works, what was on a massive discount, and a worthy investment (finally). I went from a stupid dusty apartment for years, to a dumber, but a bit smarter apartment.

I guess it’s time to finally get a new tv after a long decade, and maybe this or next Black Friday has a high-quality OLED one with a massive discount available.

To finish this blog-thought up, I hope these baby steps to improve my apartment, and kinda indirectly myself, are the first steps towards living a bit healthier and happier and are the steps to bigger changes. And taking away that urge of wanting to move, or the urge to step away from it all.