Garanimals Blog

Archive for the ‘app’ tag

June 17th, 2014 at 9:38 am

Find and Share Your Favorite Places with Findery

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There are a lot of ways to share your good times on social media. Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, and Yelp are just a few places where you can post your favorite places and where the action is.

Findery is a new app that wants to take location/social relationship to a different level. Rather than just look at the menu items people like or the photos and comments about places traveled to, Findery wants to collect input about everything from the reason why a park, or park bench, is worth stopping at, or what that funky building is on the corner where you are.

This app is a collection of stories. Imagine if lots of people shared their personal impression or recollection of a place, so that you can know the real story. What was there once? What notable thing happened there? Or why you should stop and have a look rather than walking by.

Findery is new, so it’s still building the database of places. However, the idea of not just getting a picture of a place, but a note with the factoids that bring it to life, makes this a much more interesting app.

Findery is available as an iPhone or web app – the Android app is on its way.  When you join, you can create, follow, or just explore your neighborhood or where you’re going to visit. As a frequent traveler, I love the idea of being able to find out, on a personal level, what makes a place interesting or worth visiting.  And what not to miss, especially if it’s a little bit odd or off the beaten path.

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June 3rd, 2014 at 10:26 am

Sanity Saving Road Trip Apps

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Planning a car trip this summer? Kids in the car for any longer than an hour (or maybe less) is enough to make you panic just thinking about it. Here are some apps that can help you keep them occupied and give you some peace of mind.

Kids just want to have fun. Mom Maps  app (free on Android, $2.99 iPhone) will provide you with all the kid-friendly places near where you are. Play spaces and kid restaurants are easy to find with this app.

Road Ninja is a free app that will help you find rest areas, restaurants and interesting places to stop along the way.

Some iPhone/iPad games to play along the way include Auto Bingo , Car Travel Games  and Road Trip Scavenger Hunt ($0.99).

And for Android, try Road Trip Games, and Scavenger Hunt Bingo.

For the younger ones, there’s also the Garanimals Learn, Play, Share app…education and fun in one!

Having these apps at the ready will help ensure that your trip time goes a little more smoothly. And while they won’t guarantee that you won’t have some surprises or misadventures along the way, they will hopefully keep the whining to a dull roar.

Happy travels!

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May 20th, 2014 at 7:58 am

Saving and Sharing Family Memories

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We love our kids’ art. Somewhere in my attic is an artist’s portfolio folder filled to the brim with all of the preschool and kindergarten artwork of my first child. There isn’t one for my second child. Yep, the novelty had worn off by child number 2. Sorry sweetie pie!

Even so, I still have plenty of creations from both of them from their school years. I just can’t bring myself to throw them away. I finally did throw away my daughter’s dinosaur diorama from third grade. She’s 19….

Here are a few apps that let you archive the memories without having to keep the originals.

ArtKive is an lets you take photos of your artwork (or any other items of interest), tag them, upload them, and print photo memory books. The app is free, but the books run $25 for 20 pages.

ArtMyKidMade (free) is similar but links with Dropbox, Evernote or Facebook for storing and sharing.  Anything you share on the Art My Kid Made blog could be featured in their Artist of the Day pick.

Another option is Keepy. This site lets you upload photos, artwork, and other mementos to the site, make recordings that tell the story, and share it all with friends and loved ones, who can also reply or comment with text, voice recordings or videos.

Keepy is free for the first 31 items but also offers premium and ultimate plan options for $1.99/month for 101 images and $2.99/month for unlimited.

So get out those folders, baskets and boxes of fabulous art and get clicking. You now have permission to throw away the originals without guilt. Well, maybe save a few.

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April 8th, 2014 at 9:03 am

Apps for Expectant and New Parents

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Baby on the way? Congratulations! Such an exciting, expectant, and nerve wracking time, especially if it’s your first. So much to learn, so much information about what to do and not to do. It can be overwhelming. But, while there’s no app for the hard parts, there are plenty of apps that can help you prepare.

Hello Baby app for iPhone  is a great way to learn about all of the stages of growth of your baby during pregnancy. It’s full of images and information that can help you understand the magic that is happening in the womb.

There is also the What to Expect apps for both pregnancy and the early years. This trusted series of books has been invaluable for so many of us as we navigate all of the stages of babyhood.

Sprout ($4, iPhone only) is another really helpful app for information and tips on pregnancy, weight tracking, prepping for doctor visits and what to know about all that’s happening to your body right up to timing your contractions.

Baby Bump is another app that not only provides information on your pregnancy but also has a social networking component so you can share your experiences with other moms-to-be.

And if baby is here, how about something to help with nursing, and tracking your newborn’s progress in those critical early weeks and months? WebMD Baby  provides many resources and really useful information about sleep, growth, feeding, and milestones to help you through the fraught early days of caring for your child.

I wish these apps were available when my kids were born, especially in the middle of the night when you just didn’t want to call mom, again!

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