Do You Need a Voice-Activated Home Assistant?


My mother used to tell a story of her first ever visit to my father’s home when they were dating. At the end of the evening, as my father was taking her home, my mother said she was near to tears and my father couldn’t figure out why. She asked him why his family spent the whole meal time arguing and explained how that had made her feel worried and anxious. My dad couldn’t figure out what she was talking about and kept insisting that there hadn’t been a single disagreement during dinner or at any other time during her visit. As it turned out, my mother simply had never dined with Italians before and she mistook their boisterous, jovial banter for fighting.

My parents wound up marrying and raising 7 children in their 64-plus years together. My mother adapted to the cultural differences that existed between her family and the one she married into. Of the two, my mother was definitely always the quieter one. My own husband tells me I appear to take after my father. ::winks::

Advanced technology has provided a means for anyone who desires to quiet his or her own around-the-house tone. A new communication system known as Google Assistant can help you get the word out to your family without having to shout from room to room (and potentially frighten any new suitor that might be visiting at the time). You can get Google Assistant on your smart phone or through a Google Home speaker system. Basically, by saying the word okay, followed by whatever message you’d like your Assistant to deliver, you can reach your entire family simultaneously without yelling.

In fact, you can even choose the dinner bell mode to send delightful ringtones throughout your house when you want your spouse and kiddos to come to the table. Some say their voice-activated assistants have alleviate their before-school-stress each morning because they no longer have to chase each child down and yell three or four times that they’re going to miss their bus. Instead, they simply tell their electronic assistant to inform everyone it’s time to leave for school.

It makes me wonder if children will be more prone to comply when a voice-activated system is delivering the commands. I can just imagine frustrated parents setting up their voice-assistants to say things like, “I am counting to three! One, two — I mean it! You had better be here before I say the next number!” Can you picture it? It’s after midnight on a Friday night and as a teenager sneaks in through the garage trying hard not to wake his parents, the nearest speaker kicks on and he hears Google say, “You broke curfew. You are now grounded! Please see your parents in the morning to learn the duration of the impending consequence to your choices.”

All kidding aside, there are other helpful features to this new age technology as well. You can use the system from a remote location, for instance, to let your spouse or kids know you are delayed in traffic or are on your way home from work. In a time when one’s day can quickly turn from uneventful to an emergency situation involving a national disaster, it would be very comforting to have a way to immediately let your family know you are safe (or that you need urgent help).

You know you’re a Baby Boomer if this kind of stuff makes you feel as though you’re living in a Jetson Age. Those who are willing to learn new things and embrace the many opportunities and conveniences modern technology provides may find they actually like not having to yell all over their houses anymore (although I think those of us of certain heritages will still find reasons to project our voices — it’s in our blood) — now, if only they can figure out how to get the Google Assistant to weed the garden, do the laundry, drive the kids to practice and fill out tax forms, we’ll be set, right?

Writer Bio: Judy Dudich

Judy Dudich resides in the beautiful woods of Pennsylvania, where 24 acres of land and a home-office provide the perfect setting for her children’s home-education and her own homesteading and business ventures. Life is full of blessings (and challenges!) for Judy, as a wife, mother of 10 and Grammy to six. She is a published author, whose book, “I Surrender/A Study Guide for Women” continues to encourage and support others in Christian family lifestyles throughout the world. Judy has also previously worked in the online speaking circuit. Her passion for permaculture, re-purposing, foraging and organic gardening fills her days with learning and adventure that she loves to share.