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Hanging With The Turners (HWTT) was launched in 2016 as a way to chronicle our family interactions, provide advice and suggestions as well as share ideas about family. Our hope is to inspire and motivate families through our activities and experience. 

HWTT is all about family, sports and lifestyle. We provide thoughtful insight on our events through blog posts, original photography and social media. Happy hanging!

Say Hello to my Little Friend

Say Hello to my Little Friend

My name isn’t Al Pacino, but over the past couple of months, I have been transforming my house from a regular home to a smart home with this little device. In order for this to happen, I had to start with this hockey puck-style contraption called the Echo Dot. This amazing little device by Amazon is an absolute game changer.

This device can tell you what’s on your calendar, order a pizza, make purchases from Amazon and assist your kids with their math problems…all from the sound of your voice. How does it work? I am glad you asked. The first thing you need to do is purchase this device, connect it to your home network and download the Amazon Alexa app to your smart phone. After that you have to determine what kind of things you would like to do with this device. You can use it for basic commands like playing Pandora or more intricate commands like dimming your recessed lights to 20%. In order for the device to respond, you have to say “Alexa” and then give her a command. For example, “Alexa, tell me what the weather is tomorrow?” And she will respond with a nice little weather report.

As I stated, I am transforming my home into a smart home so I have been able to connect my lights, alarm system and other areas of the house to Echo Dot. In order to do so you have to enable skills in your Alexa app in order for it to work. For example, I am using the Philips Hue lighting system and the Philips Hue app which skills has been enabled by the Alexa app in order to control my lights by my voice. The key to connecting everything is ensuring everything is connected to your WiFi. Some items are connected via hubs, smart outlets and or apps. Also, I have Echo Dots on every floor and in various rooms so I can control everything with the sound of my voice no matter where I am.

I know it sounds complicated, but it really isn’t. Now it can get expensive so I recommend doing a little at a time as I am. But seeing it come together has been fun for the entire family.

Batman and Piggy

Batman and Piggy

Another 48 Hours

Another 48 Hours