Friday, March 13, 2015

App-tacular

I am a tad behind in the app-world of smart phones, as I have been fumbling around with my first smart phone for only a week now.  And, I have to brag, have yet to drop it.

That being said, am hoping you can feed into my growing obsession of apps.  Below is a ((very) short) list of my favorites and would love to hear from others on apps they prefer and why.  From apps for hobbies, working out, kid-centric, I want to know about it!

If you have a favorite, tell me.  Favorite ten, even better.  Faves in excess of 20...maybe think about getting a new hobby...after sharing of course.

City-Centric:
  1. SpotHero - Best parking rates available near any location to provide. It's been fantastic for us in Chicago.  Which is great when you are cheap like us.
  2. Park Chicago & Parkmobile - parking meter apps for city of Chicago.  CLUTCH if you are like me and typically carry your phone.  And only your phone.  Side note: I need to start remembering my wallet.
  3. GasBuddy - Locates the least expensive gas rates from where you are.  see comment above re: cheapness.
  4. Urbanspoon - identifies restaurants near you or a selected location - can search by cuisine, location, price.
  5. CTA Arrivals - Um, this is the best one my husband uses and I can't find it anywhere, so I guess am looking for a better system than "CTA Tracker" - this no longer exists (sadly), so have begrudgingly moved onto Transit Stop
Kid-Centric:
  1. Kids Media - provides information on movies, TV shows, Apps, and Computer sites for kids.  Ranks them based on age of children, violence, language, so you know what you are getting yourself into (ie. we liked How to Train your Dragon, but will be waiting a few years for the second one).
  2. Night Lite - just used this at out hotel so Chase wasn't bumping into walls in the middle of the night.  It was awesome.  And much quieter.
  3. Cut the Rope - if you can get past that it is all about feeding candy to an adorable little monster, this is a great problem-solving game.  My 5 year old loves it, but my 3 year gets frustrated as the difficultly goes beyond what he can do.  Our kids make zero connection to candy and wanting candy...or maybe the fact that they always want candy means it is a wash.
  4. Thinkrolls & Thinkrolls 2 - Great game for kids to do problem solving, not too hard if the kids are younger and they can increase the difficultly as they acheive levels or repeat the same levels if younger and mastering.  Another great thing is if you are stuck in one spot, the child can easily re-start.
  5. Tozzle - little puzzles that move when completed.  Our 4 yo loves them.
  6. KidsDoodle - Again, Chase loves this and there is a video where it plays back what they have drawn.
Health, Recipes, Travel Tips / Road Trip Ideas:

  1. Roadside - This gives fun facts and pit stop ideas to breakup a road trip.  I have only used it once and it was fun to point out facts along the road and if we weren't focused on just getting to the destination as fast as possible would have even ventured to see a few of the notables up close.  This one is purchased and then it is a bit sneaky because your purchase only gets you one "area" of the US.  So, luckily we don't travel by car too many places and the options work well for us so far.
  2. Waze - Great option to Google Maps as it points out police presence along the route and traffic issues.


Annnnnnnnd that's it.  Please help me - post in comments or on FB your recommendations - I can't wait to be up and running on this little machine!