Happy February! I am so glad January is over. The flu and colds took over our entire house last month and I am looking forward to a new page on the calendar, no more sickness and one month closer to spring!
Between the stormy weather and illness, we have been cooped up inside and you can’t help but spend some extra time on the old smartphone. I thought I’d share some of my most used and favourite apps right now (aside from the obvious social media faves)!
I think this one might be my most favourite app ever. My wallet was so full of loyalty/points cards (even after a purge) that I could barley get it closed. I came across the Stocard app mentioned in a magazine, downloaded it immediately and was hooked. I got rid of most of my plastic loyalty cards and had them all accessible on the app on my phone. If you aren’t already using this, download it now- you will not regret it! Cards that I have digitized: Airmiles, PC Optimum, Canadian Tire, Aeroplan, Airmiles, CAA, Cineplex, Hudsons Bay, Plum Rewards, La Senza, M&M Meats, Dynamite, IHG.
For the ladies- Clue is a period tracking app that helps you track your periods and can also help to determine ovulation and fertility dates. The more data you enter in, the better it can help predict dates. Based on your entries, it predicts your upcoming mentstral cycles and fertile dates. I have been using this app for almost two years and it is undeniably accurate within 1-2 days for me. It was really helpful to have the fertility predictions when we were trying to get pregnant and the period tracking easily helped to look back and determine our due date once we concieved. Sometimes you get so busy, you forget your monthly gift is arriving. This app can send you notifications to your phone in advance to remind you mother nature is coming to visit and let you get prepared (because this is the worst suprise)! Plus, the app is FREE!
I like to think we are pretty tech-savy family. We purchased a Motorola video baby monitor that has a handheld unit and also allows us to pair to our phones. This way wherever we are, we can check on our little guy where he is sleeping soundly in his crib. We keep the handheld unit in our bedroom and use the app for everywhere else. Hubble also pairs with the nest system (something I am looking forward to trying).
The Wonder Weeks
For the new mamas- have you ever noticed your baby is extra fussy but you aren’t sure why? Shortly after my little one was born, my amazing hair stylist (and life strategist) told me about the Wonder Weeks App. It highlights your baby’s mental development stages and helps you understand their fussy phases. You set your profile to your baby’s due date (not birth date) and the app actually charts out by week (and date) the different mental “leaps” your baby will have, how long they will last and when the real stormy period may be. The app explains what your child is learning in each step and how to help your child through each development stage.
Shoppers Optimum (now PC Optimum)
This one may seem a bit more obvious, but seriously- by using the app and loading some offers before I go shopping (usually sitting in my car in the parking lot), I have earned so many more points and got so much product for free! The program just switched over this week so now you can earn points from your groceries AND from your drug store purchases and redeem them for either or (I’ll be going for the makeup/haircare and fragrance purchases)! One of the great features of this program is that the offers are usually specified to products you are already buying. The more you shop, the more the app can customize offers for products that you actually buy. I’m hoping this program keeps up with the great Shoppers Drugmart offers that were offered in the last program, as that is where I earned alot of my points. Check out this article from Moneysense on how to maximize the new program and your rewards. With the new program you can redeem in $10 increments as well so you don’t need to wait until you hit a specific number of points to redeem (and its really easy to redeem!). Every other month I can usually redeem about $60-100 worth of product. It’s easy to earn especially with your groceries and those runs to the drugstore for makeup/hair products, tampons, diapers/wipes etc. (those things add up)! And as a side note, to transfer your PC Plus and Shoppers Optimum cards to the new app/program is crazy easy.
My new workout obsession! I discovered this workout community/program through Youtube and instantly connected with it. Blogilates is a female fitness channel on Youtube led by Cassey Ho (she also has a blog, thus the Blogilates). Cassey is the creator of POP Pilates which are pilates based workouts with no equipment. The workouts are incredible! I started with a few Youtube videos to try it out and was hooked. After following her on social media, I realized she also had her own Blogilates app. Using the app, you link to her monthly workout calendar which includes new workouts every day (plus there all all other kinds of workout series videos and recipes!). Using the app and the workout calendar, you can check off each workout and you can play the YouTube video right then and there without having to open another app. It is extrememly convenient. The workouts are always changing, and the best part is that they are quick! Each day focuses on a different area (cardio, abs, arms, legs, lower body, upper body and stretching). For example, my workout today was a mix of three videos; one was 12min, the second was 13min and the last was 6min. All you need is a mat and you can literally do it anywhere. The app makes it so simple that it is really helping me workout every day and is the first at home workout program that I really enjoy doing.
This is just the standard Podcast app on Apple devices but honestly I never started using it until this month. I am obsessed with the Taylor Strecker Show (which is subscription based), and I listen to it live through the Podcast app. If you miss the live show, the full episodes are available on the app after the show. The show now has a free Podcast weekly called the Taste of Taylor. You should definitely check it out as this show is hilarious, always has amazing guest co hosts and will not let you down in the entertainment department (plus you get news, celebrity gossip and health advice on top of just great coversation). There are lots of free shows and podcasts on the app as well. They are great to listen to in the background and you need some down time and a good laugh. I have it on in the kitchen in the mornings, and I also pair it to my car while driving.
I love my morning routine which includes Breakfast Television Toronto on in the background. I get the daily news, sports highlights, weather and celebrity gossip and they are always highlighting the latest social issues, fashion, beauty, fitness and home trends. Also- they are always cooking or eating something delicious! The hosts are hilarious and the segments are always really entertaining. You can stream the show live from the app, but if I ever miss it live in the morning, the app has a number of video clip highlights from the show that you can catch up on when you get a chance.
I am not going to go into details on these as they are pretty self explanatory but my top shopping apps are: Amazon, Indigo, Sephora and Etsy. One touch shopping has never been so beautiful!
What other great apps should I try? What are you go-to’s? Leave any suggestions in the comments!