When I was pregnant, I made a list of my top five pregnancy apps – and you guys seemed to like it pretty well. So I’m back today with a list of my current faves. I hope this one helps, too!
When I was pregnant, I was mainly focused on tracking Henry’s growth and development in-utero. Now that he’s here, making noise and causing a ruckus, I’m all about time management and community.
There are a few apps you can go ahead and mark as “gimme” must-haves. Those include Echofon, Tumblr, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. Okay, fine, and Candy Crush. We’re all there. We’re all using those. (The same goes for Netflix, Hulu Plus, Amazon Prime, etc.) I won’t bore you with a description of how I use the same apps as every other iPhone owner on the planet. Here’s my slightly deeper dive.
When I’m with Henry, I can count on spending 15 minutes every 2 hours or so holding him while he eats. I have learned to get some quality reading in during this time. That’s where these first two apps come in handy:
Zite is basically a news aggregator that tailors its content to your interests. You choose from a list of topics when you first set up your account, and Zite serves up the top articles and posts on those topics. It’s a very handy way to keep updated on the top news from your own areas of interest. For example, did you know that Getty just made over 35 million stock images available to bloggers for free? Now you know. Boom. Zited.
Interesting point of note – Zite was just aquired by Flipboard, another fantastic iOS app. They made it clear in their blog post about the acquisition that “the Zite app is not going to be around forever.” It’ll be interesting to see how the service evolves under Flipboard – but considering that Flipboard is one of the most beautiful, well-organized apps in the marketplace right now, I’m not terribly worried about the future of Zite.
Since I can now count on this built-in reading time, I use Pocket to keep track of all the articles I stumble across during the day. While I may not have time to read an interesting post the moment I come across it, I can use Pocket from any of my devices to bookmark the content and then access it later when I have the time, whether I’m on my phone, iPad, or laptop.
When I’ve read an article or post that I want to share, I’ll turn to one of two communities: reddit or twitter.
3. Alien Blue
My reddit app of choice, Alien Blue is the best organized experience I’ve found for the massive online conversation that is reddit. You can get lost in the wormhole of subreddits available, but I mainly stick to the super-supportive and helpful parenting communities.
While my fellow redditors may be up at all hours of the night, my friends on Twitter tend to NOT be wide awake and ready to chat in the wee-small hours of the morning. So when I’ve found something interesting to talk about (or when I think of an especially quippy one-liner) at an inopportune time of night, I use Buffer to save those tweets and send them out throughout the day. That way I don’t feel like I’m shouting into the void and my friends aren’t worried about my whackadoodle sleeping schedule.
I was SO BUMMED when Google announced that they were getting rid of Google Reader. I tried several alternatives before I finally landed at Feedly – but I have totally come around. Feedly is hands-down the best RSS reader I have ever used – easy to use, clean interface, and well-organized. Just delightful. And perfect for keeping up with all of my blogger friends!
6. Wonder Weeks
Henry is a ridiculously easy baby. He is an absolute delight 99.9% of the time. But when he does get suddenly fussy or restless or when he starts a bedtime strike that makes me wonder whether we’ll ever get him to sleep without a fight again, I consult this app. It’s right on the money nearly every time, and it always offers me valuable insight when I’m wondering what’s going on with him.
So, there you go! The apps that I find the most useful in my life as a new mom. As always, let me know if I missed any! I’m always up for a good enlightening.