Handy apps to keep your summer easy, organized and fun.
As you probably know, last week marked the official start to summer! Who would have thought it would be here so fast? If you’re like me, you’re probably scrambling around trying to prepare for family vacations, come up with ideas to keep your kids busy, and of course, keep on track with the thousands of other life to-dos.
With so much going on, I thought I’d point out a few handy apps that I’ll be using myself this summer. Hopefully they can help make your own sunny days a bit easier, organized and fun.
FamJam is a drawing and photo sharing app that lets you and your kids use a robust set of digital coloring tools to create custom art that can be sent, saved and cherished for years to come. It’s especially useful for those moms whose refrigerators have no more room for another coloring book drawing — just digitize it instead! FamJam is available for iPad, iPhone or Android.
Rent The Runway
Headed to a high school reunion, wedding, or other special event this summer? Why spend hundreds of dollars on a dress you’ll only wear once? Instead, go to Rent The Runway and pick out a gorgeous couture designer gown that you can rent (!) for your big night. It will be sent to you a day or two before the event, then just drop it in a pre-paid shipping envelope after you’re finished wearing it — no cleaning required. It’s like Netflix for designer dresses! Worried about the fit? They’ll even send you two different sizes to make sure one works!
Summer is the perfect season to be a bit lazy. Don’t you agree? That’s why I’m loving TaskRabbit, an errand service where you pay nominal fees to have people do anything for you! Don’t want to go to the grocery store this week? Need someone to take all that junk to Goodwill? TaskRabbit will find a qualified, vetted “rabbit” to do it for you, usually at a very reasonable rate. I personally use this service all the time and can testify that it’s changed my life. I haven’t stepped inside a grocery store in months! It is already in several major cities in the U.S. and coming to more all the time, so keep your eyes peeled.
Martha Stewart’s CraftStudio
Summer time is the perfect time to work on that old scrapbook. While I love a good scrapbooking project, the tech-obsessed soul in me yearns to see all real-world things with a digital companion. My crafting inspiration, Mrs. Martha Stewart, apparently agrees. Her new app, Craftstudio, does a fantastic job at letting you create virtual scrapbook pages right from your iPad. There are all kinds of embellishment, paper and decor options — you can even shake your iPad to sprinkle glitter! Better yet, the app is free until July 8th, at which point it will cost you $4.99.
Dog Park Finder Plus
Bringing Fido on your summer road trip but don’t want the hotel parking lot as the only place for him to get some exercise? Dog Park Finder Plus is powered by over four years of editorial research and reviews of the best dog parks across the country. The app even includes recommendations for dog friendly beaches and restaurants. Download this app (available for iPhone or iPad), and your dog will thank you with kisses for many road trips to come.
Last minute guests coming in for the weekend? Need a place to stay along that road trip? Hotel Tonight helps you find and book same-day hotel rooms at up to 70% off. The prices you’ll find here are truly AMAZING. Plus, you may discover a really neat hotel off the beaten path. Though not every city in the country is included yet, most of the major cities are supported with even more being added each month.
UV Safe Timer
Everyone hates a sunburn…especially your delicate skin. But have no fear — there’s now an app for that. (Of course there is.) UV Safe Timer lets you specify the type of sunscreen you’re using and will notify you when it’s time to reapply. The alert is based on your personal skin profile and, using GPS technology, the current UV index at your location. Less aloe vera for all!