Category Archives: iPhone

My top 3 apps for a 12 to 20 month old

Since my Top Maternity Apps blog post was such a hit (CTV Morning Live Video). I’ve decided to create a list of 3 great apps for 12 to 20 month olds.

 Mr. Potato Head – Create & Play: School Edition (free)

With this app, she’s learning to drag and drop objects into a toy box and replace facial features on Mr. Potato Head. Also, there is a fun camera feature in this game that enables you to take a screen shot of your Mr. Potato Head in action.

WheelsOnBus (Free or Pay)

We paid for the full version of this app, because our daughter loved it so much. There are many activities that she can do using this app. She can pretend she’s a bus driver, play a memory card game, learn about emergency vehicles with the tiny train and use the coloring book. Her favorite thing about this app is the song. She’s able to tell me that she wants this app on when she says “bébé”, because she wants to see the baby go “wah wah wah”. I thought this app was worth buying the full version.

KidsDoodle (free)

Our daughter loves colouring and drawing. She has a few Magna Doodle type toys and loves all of them. When we forget these toys in the car, I can often distract her with this app. The simple gesture of waving your finger around on the screen and a line happens to appear is enough to keep her attention for a few minutes.

Other apps that we continue to use on a daily basis are:

YouTube (free)

I create TV and music playlists for my daughter using YouTube. We have songs from Yo Gabba Gabba to the Sesame Street gang. TV shows from Dora to Mickey Mouse classics.

Relax Melodies (free)

We still use this app on a nightly basis. Our house is very small and we’ve found that this app helps her get a good night sleep and drain out some of the noise from the other rooms at night.

 

Do you have any apps that you like to use with your kids? What are they and what age are they playing it? I’m also looking for suggestions on French apps for kids.

Mr. Stork has arrived in Ottawa!

 

I don’t know about you, but it feels like Mr. Stork has arrived in Ottawa. If feels like a baby boom is happening in Ottawa. Don’t you feel like everyone you know has either had a baby, having a baby or trying to have a baby. It’s wonderful news. All of it. Super excited for all of you and your friends. We’re adding to Ottawa’s population people! Keep it up!

I have to admit that when someone tells me their having a baby, I’m eager to tell them about all the cool websites, checklists and forums that they should sign up for.  I’m that guy. Some websites that offered me some fabulous advice and tips that I just have to share with everyone.

When I was pregnant, I was very thankful when people offered their two cents. Of course, you always take what you want from it and leave the rest, which is what I hope you will do with the following list.

Here is my list of great websites and resources that you should pay attention to if you are trying to get pregnant, are pregnant or have a little one.

Trying to have a baby

Getting pregnant wasn’t easy for my husband and I (I’ll save that story for another blog post). While we were trying to “relax and let it happen”, here are a few websites that I kept my eyes on while we were trying to conceive (TTC).

Baby Centre – Community: They have a great TTC section for those that want to talk with others that are going through the same thing. They also have subgroups for those dealing with more specific and/or delicate situations.

Fertility Friend: A great online tracking tool to figure out your ovulation window. If you are tracking your temperature, this site will be very useful for you. They also have a great app that you can download for free.

Ottawa Fertility Center: I count myself very lucky to have been refered here. This clinic took really good care of us and if you ever have to visit this center, I hope they take good care of you too.

Early Pregnancy Tests Online: Buying all those pregnancy and ovulation tests can really add up. This website has great prices on everything you’ll need TTC.

 

Your pregnant (!*$&!)

Congrats! This is the time to take care of yourself and indulge in those crazy cravings (buffalo chicken wraps and red delicious apples for me!). Don’t worry about how much you’re sleeping. Do it. Take advantage of it. You’ll be surprised how little you’ll get later (unless you have a “angel baby” that sleeps all night from day 1… then I hate you… just kidding.. sort of).

Baby Centre – Community: Once you’re pregnant, move over to the pregnancy section. Baby Centre has also created birth groups, so that you can interact with other moms who are due around the same time as you. Baby Centre also has some great apps that you can download which will track your baby’s progress week by week.

Baby Centre – Baby Registry Checklist: I love lists. This is a great one to get your baby registry up and going. It’s very overwhelming all the stuff you need to buy. This is a great checklist to get you started.

Old Navy Maternity: Shortly after you get pregnant you’ll start to notice that some things that fit loose one day, might be a little tighter the next. In comes maternity clothing. You may be lucky and get a wack load of clothing that you’re previous pregnant friend has and lets you borrow, but you might be pregnant in the opposite season as her or what she’s lending to you really isn’t your style.  Every Old Navy in Canada, I believe as of February 2013, should now have a small maternity clothing section. Old Navy often have sales on clothing (40% off everything!). So keep an eye out for these sales. Thyme and Motherhood Maternity also have good sales too once in a while.

Freebies for new moms: Sign up for ALL OF THEM. So fun!

 

Baby is here (!*$&! x2)

Now let the fun begin. Most of us have no idea what were doing. Just keep in mind, this baby has never had a parent before you, so don’t worry if you mess up, it can judge you.

A Cup of Joe (blog): I love this blog and her writing style. She’s a mom with two boys living in New York. My favorite blog post on her blog, is actually written by her husband. Every new mom and dad should read 8 confessions of a new dad. I have to agree with the 9 month comment. Let me know what you think.

Jenny wears glasses list of Ottawa consignment stores: For everything else that you didn’t get at your baby shower, don’t forget to go to visit consignment stores. You can often find what you need, in great condition and at a lower price.

Sleep Easy Solution: For those parents that might need to sleep train their kid. This book saved us.  I buy it for every baby shower I go to now. I always hope that you will never have to open or use this book, but I always find it comforting to know that you have it in your back pocket.

Information about Breath Holding Spells: Now I’m not adding this here to scare anyone, it’s more for information purposes. I never heard of this before I had my daughter and knew nothing about it.

 

What are your favorite websites/resources/tips? Let me know. I would love to hear them.

 

Top 5 iPhone Backgrounds (September)

The new iPhone is coming out today! To celebrate iOS 8 and the new iPhone 6 and 6+, here are 5 of my favourite iPhone backgrounds for September:

1. Bekah O’Connor – Feathers

2. Vetica – Cats

3. Alexquistie – Wrapping Paper

4. Modge Podge Rocks – It’s Fall Y’all

 

5. Eat Drink Chic – Brush Strokes

 

Here are my top 5 iPhone backgrounds for July.

Websites that make cool photo related gifts

Do you read A Cup of Jo’s blog? Are you jealous of all the cool things she’s been making with Pinhole Press*? Me too.

I’m hoping the Internet (I mean you), can help me find a website that helps us Canadians make cool stuff like this:

So far, the only companies I can find that makes anything similar are:

Vistaprint.ca

  • Clothing
  • Hoodies
  • Hats
  • Tote Bags

Walmart PhotoCentre

  • Photo Books
  • Photo keychains
  • Photo puzzles
  • iPhone cases

Blacks.ca

Do you use any of these sites for your photo related gifts? Do you have another website you use? Let me know!

 

*Pinhole Press does ship to Canada. Not sure what their shipping rates are.

 

My favourite mom apps

Over the past year, I’ve gotten to know my baby and my iPhone extremely well. We’ve always been close, but we got even closer while I was on maternity leave. I also noticed that I’m a great multi-tasker. Not only was I breastfeeding my daughter, but I was also searching the Internet to find out “why is my baby crying”.

Here is a list of my favourite apps that I used while on maternity leave:

1. My Pregnancy Today and My Baby Today – Both apps helped me a lot during pregnancy and helped me learn about my baby milestones. Cute cartoons would show up once in a while, which I found great to be great comic relief and the to-do lists they provided helped keep me on track.

2. Relax Melodies – Since she was 8 months, we have been using this app. I’m actually listening to “slow waves” right now through the baby monitor while I’m typing this. When we sleep trained our daughter at 6 months, one of the tools it says to use is white noise. While I was in Florida, her crib was next to a bathroom that had a fan. It worked great for those two months. It offered a light glow and the fan as a noise machine. When I got home from our trip, I didn’t have any sound machines that would go all night. After doing some research on Amazon.com, I came across this app. We had an old iPhone 4 that we weren’t using and decided to put the app on the phone, plug the phone in all the time and let it run. It works so well. It never shuts off, but you can set a timer if you want.  The best part, I didn’t have to spend $50+ on a noise machine, this app is FREE!

3. Candy Crush – Who isn’t addicted to Candy Crush? I certainly am. I’m not addicted enough to search for Candy Crush cheats, but I have paid .99 cents to get a few more moves to pass a level. Don’t judge. You’ve done it too!

4. Fisher-Price Giggle Gang – So we used this app mostly when we didn’t want the baby to fall asleep in the car, so that she could have a good nap at home. Our daughter was about 6 months when we started using this app. It was one of the only apps that would keep her attention long enough to keep her awake until we got home. Now I find she gets a little bored with that app, but it worked like a charm when it did.

5. Google Chrome – As mentioned above, a search engine app was key in the first few months of parenthood for us. I didn’t know what I was doing, I needed help. I searched for things like “why does my baby have goop coming out of her eye?” “Why is my baby crying?” “Does my baby have gas?” “How to stop a baby from crying?” and so on. It was extremely helpful. I don’t know how people did this in the olden days. 😛

6. Next Issue – If you’re reading this and now at #6 on my list, you’re probably a) a new mom b) a recent back-to-work mom or c) have a friend that is a new mom and plan to send her my list of mom apps for her to read. Next Issue is an excellent concept for anyone really. I have to be honest, I haven’t downloaded this app*, BUT I plan to tonight because I started work again on Tuesday and I finally have a few minutes to myself at lunch time to indulge in a good magazine. Next Issue is basically an all-you-can-read app for magazines. You know how magazines are normally between $3-$8 per magazine, well with Next Issue you can a basic subscription for $9.99/month or premium subscription for $14.99/month. This is a steal since you would probably end up spending more than that a month on 2-3 magazines, now you can have them all! Muahahahah. The best part?!? If you use this link, you’ll get a 30-day trial for free. FREE!

7. Instagram – While I was on maternity leave, I used Instagram a lot. I used it because I didn’t want to flood my Facebook with our family pictures, but did want to post a ton of pictures of our daughter to our friends and family that did want to see it. I currently use Instagram a little less for personal purposes and more for the blog these days. I guess that’s what happens when your little one turns one.

8. Netflix – Speaking of breastfeeding, we can’t forget our about pumping days. I actually really enjoyed pumping. I only did it a few times (which is probably why I say I liked it) and enjoyed every minute of it. Why? Because at that point, it was the only time of day that I had to myself. Our daughter was a terrible sleeper, so for the first three months, I actually had to sleep with her on me (bad I know, but you do what you have to do) and then beside me. We were attached to the hip (which I also loved)… BUT when I did want that alone time and I only got it when I had to pump. So, when it came time, I loaded up Saving Hope on Netflix, got my double breast pump ready and pumped away.

9. iBooks – I really enjoyed using iBooks on my iPad mini when I was in Florida. It allowed me to buy books and not have to lug around clunky books with me. Here are a list of books I downloaded on mat leave: The Best Homemade Baby Food on the Planet, The Sleepeasy Solution, Divergent and  The Husband’s Secret (which I still haven’t read).



* Update: Since I have written this post, I have downloaded this app and love it. I use it to read magazines on the way to work, to relax after the baby is down for the night and to browse magazines during my lunch hour. I really wish I had thought to download this app while on Mat leave.