Welcome back! Here’s this week’s round-up of Must Have Apps for Parents. This week I decided to stick to all FREE apps ’cause who doesn’t like a good freebie?! Enjoy and hope these make navigating parenthood a bit simpler. 🙂
Wow! I recently discovered this app and I can’t believe how simple shopping can be now that I have weekly circulars for all my favorite stores right at my finger tips! Every parent needs this!!! Available for both iOS and Android, this app will simplify your shopping experience. Trust me! Say goodbye to paper circulars! I avoid those things like the plague. I’ll tell you that I usually hand the circular off to the hubby as soon as we enter a store. He’s good at finding the deals while I run down the aisles after the kiddos. NOT ANYMORE!!! Now I let him run after the kids while I scroll through my pre-selected deals on my phone. This app is also great for keeping a shopping list at your finger tips. I used to keep my shopping list on my iPhone Reminders app. Not anymore!!! So go ahead download Flipp, shop simple and save some $$$. Adios annoying paper circulars!
Why I LOVE it
- This app delivers more than 400 local circulars right to your phone or tablet. Just enter your zip code and BAM there you have it! You will never miss a good deal again!
- Allows you to type in your own list and then shows you the local deals that match each item on your list. Genius!
- Allows you to tap and clip items as you scroll through a circular. It then places those clippings into a neat clippings section where you can use just what you clipped, no need to look at the rest of the circular again. This feature is also super convenient if you are a parent who uses price matching to save extra $. For example, I know Walmart matches any competitors lowest price. Happy and simple savings!
Who said babies don’t come with an owner’s manual? When my son was born my go to baby book was The Baby Owner’s Manual. The hubby and I swore it was the bible of all things baby! What a clever and easy to follow (and carry around) little book! So you know I was super excited when I recently stumbled upon this app! I had just dug up the ol’ little manual and there it was sitting on one of Baby Girl’s shelves when I discovered this app. I had been a bit disappointed because I couldn’t jot down milestones in the book since I had already used it to track my son’s milestones. Well problem solved! Now I can track all her milestones right on the app! You can too! Download this iOS must-have app and you too can have your own owner’s manual for your little baby. This clever little app includes all the goodies the book does. Score!! 🙂
Why I LOVE it
- Allows you to track and record baby’s weight and length and compare it to average percentiles
- You can track feedings and sleep schedules
- View all the data you enter in a neat chart, just like in the book.
- What’s super cool is that you can share all these milestones and data via email, photos, Facebook or Twitter with family members and friends. But most importantly you could share this all with your pediatrician as well.
- Customizable baby profile where you can add your little darling’s photo
- The Tips section includes lots of the same useful information that I depended on so very much when my Big Boy was just a little baby boy.
- And the best feature of all… Get this, you can track multiple kiddies using different profiles
Whenever I’m fresh out of ideas and need some inspiration for something fun and simple to do that won’t break the bank, I turn to my trusty Groupon app. I have been known to occasionally loose myself in a scroll-tap-scroll trance, daydreaming about the endless possibilities. Everything from kids books to date-nite outings and vacation deals can be found on GroupOn. You might have already read my earlier Valentine’s date-nite post about how the hubby and I celebrated with a cool Groupon deal. If you haven’t, check it out here. To give you some more example of how I use it, just this past weekend we took the family on a FUN outing here in NYC to the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum. We bought tickets on Groupon and saved $10 on each ticket! I even booked a family vacation recently to a really nice all-inclusive resort in the Bahamas (blogpost coming this summer, so stay tuned) and saved BIG $$$. As you can tell, I really love this app! Available for download from the App Store, Google Play Store, Windows Store, and they even have a version for your Blackberry. So there are no excuses for not getting Groupon deals mom and dad! This app is a must-have for parents who are not trying to break the bank but still want to have all the FUN!
Why I LOVE it
- Easy to use with a few quick slides and taps of your finger
- Personal profile stores your payment methods, billing and shipping information making for quick purchases anytime/anywhere
- My Groupons section stores your purchases for easy access and lists them in the chronological order in which they will expire
- Easy customer service. They are easy to contact by email, message or telephone and will resolve any problems that may arise, including refunds when needed (in my experience)
- and finally, the DEALS and the endless possibilities!
This is a huge must-have when you need to entertain your kids for a bit, in the car, at a restaurant or just to buy yourself enough piece to enjoy a quiet much-needed cup of coffee. This free app was released by Google only a few weeks ago and runs on Android and iOS. YouTube Kids makes it safer and easier for kids to get access to the kid-appropriate videos they love and you won’t have to police their every click and tap. Enjoy your freedom parents! 😉
Why I LOVE it
- The easy to use interface includes large images and colorful icons making it easy for kids to navigate on their own
- Built in content filters allows access to videos that are kid-appropriate in 4 categories – Shows, Music, Learning and Explore
- Once you begin using the app a recommended category/button will show up. The app rounds up your favorite videos based on what you’ve already watched and pulls them into this category for easy access anytime. For example my kid absolutely loves watching Minecraft videos so now he has a section full of them that he can get access to at anytime. Pretty neat!
- Speak to search function makes it easy for kids to search even if they can’t write/type.
- The Parental Controls lets parents breathe easy knowing that their kids won’t stumble upon inappropriate content.
And just to give you an idea of the included content, here are some of our favorites by category:
Shows = Peppa Pig, Sesame Street, Pocoyo, Yo Gabba Gabba Channel
Learning = BabyFirst TV, National Geographic Kids, PBS Kids, TedEd, Doctor Mad Science Channel
Explore = Lego Channel, Disney collector’s unwrapping videos (cause for some weird reason kids can’t get enough of these), cat videos, puppy videos, cooking videos and in the news videos
Music = Storybots Channel, Mother Goose Club Channel, Pop Music Videos for Kids, (and of course) Let It Go Videos.
Quick Navigation Tip: How to Navigate Parental Controls
- Start by tapping the padlock at bottom right corner GROWN-UPS ONLY! To gain access you must enter four numbers that are spelled out
- Once unlocked you can tap on the timer or settings buttons to customize. The timer feature offers the option to set time limits of up to 120 minute max. The app will lock down when time is up
- In settings you can customize audio features and eliminate the background music and sound effects from the main page (cause it annoys the heck out of me)
- The content control feature allows you to remove the search option to limit available videos to those that appear on the home screen only
- The privacy feature allows you to clear out the watched history including the recommended videos
Even though I think this app is awesome! There is one thing that for me would make it better and more effective in keeping kids safe…
What I would LOVE to see changed
- I wish they had an option to set a custom pin. My Big Boy started reading the names of numbers by age three so if you have a savvy toddler or a school-aged kid, the parental controls might not be as useful as Google intended.
If you aren’t using this visual bookmarking tool yet, you need to try it out pronto! I know you’ll love it! Before Pinterest, I wasted so much time clipping magazine articles, saving links to websites and jotting down ideas only to forget where I stored them when I really needed to find them. These days, Pinterest is where it’s at! I’ve used it to find inspiration when planning my kids birthday parties, setting up their new cool bedrooms, organizing the closets, making dinner, and so much more! Weather you need to plan a new project around the house, need travel tips, want to find your style, need to cook a kick-ass meal, or wish to explore a new hobby, Pinterest is the place for you! So download the iOS or Android app now and let the pinning frenzy begin. You can thank me later! 😉
Why I LOVE it
- You can find ideas for things to make, buy and do. Pinterest has it ALL!
- Image based boards – think of them as categorized bulletin boards where you can pin-up pictures of the cool stuff you want to save for later use.
- Sign up with your Facebook or Twitter accounts and you can find your friends on Pinterest. You’ll find this feature at the top left corner. You can also access it under settings. You can find your Facebook friends, invite friends by email or text them and invite them right from your phone’s contact list. I love this feature because it let’s you see what your friends are up to and provides a little extra inspiration. You never know if one of your friend’s next pins will inspire you to complete that DIY home project you’ve put off or bake that perfect homemade multi-layer birthday cake (which you never thought you could do) for your kid’s next party!
- Send messages to your friends right from the app so you can plan projects together, swap ideas and share your favorite Pinterest finds.
Quick Online Tip:
- If you go on to use the Pinterest website make sure you download the Chrome browser button. It will allow you to save any creative idea you may stumble upon while searching the web.
- To add this button to your browser click the plus sign (+) at the bottom right corner on the Pinterest website.
- Click on the words Get the Pinterest browser button (or click here to get it now)
- When you land on the new page click the red Get our browser button. Then just follow any directions and you’ll be pinning on the web in no time!
So once again, there you have it! A few more of my favorite apps and must haves for any parent! Thanks for stopping by and hope you’ll come back soon to check out my next installment of Must-Have APPs for Parents. And please, let me know how you like these. I hope that they will make your life a little simpler in some way. Go ahead! Leave me a comment below. I would LOVE to hear from you! 🙂