The Best Apps for Managing Your Life (and Your Kids) Like a Type-A Champ
You don't need to convince any parent that time flies faster than a SpaceX rocket. (Seriously, how are those kids already outpacing us in height?) Oh and hey, happy 2018: Just like that, another calendar has — unsurprisingly — flown off the wall. If "get more organized" is once again at the top of your resolutions list, we'll be the first to get on that bandwagon with you — and the best place to start is the perhaps the device you're most likely already using to scroll through this story.
We already swear by our trusty iCal, Evernote, TaskRabbit, and other go-to productivity apps (just ask any of our entrepreneurial-minded members), which is why we're rounding up the best fam-focused apps for moms and dads to download in honor of their get-it-together resolution. From an on-demand app that's the "Uber for kids" and an app that helps parents and children live more mindfully to a meditation service to help guide women through pregnancy and more, these productivity- and wellness-focused downloads will help us all save precious time, sanity, and money — and yes, even help the entire family disconnect for a while (yes, you read that on your screen right).
Get ready to download your way to a more organized life and see our picks below, then share your favorite apps with us in the comments.
Expectful: Driven by the science-backed belief that mindfulness and relaxation can help boost fertility and have a positive effect on pregnancy and motherhood, Expectful delivers 10-minute meditations for every step of a woman's reproductive journey: From trimester-to-trimester mindfulness exercises to guided meditations that help couples get into the right mindset to conceive.
Price: $9.99 per month, first 14 days free
Download: iOS; also available online
Trekaroo: "With two kiddos it’s hard to find things all the time to keep them entertained," says Kelly McKee Zafjen. The mama of twins and Little Minis co-founder/creative director explained to us last year that she loves to check out the crowd-sourced travel advice app "wherever I am to see what kid-friendly activities are around me." Trekaroo gathers tips and reviews from parents, making it easier to find parks, events, things to do, and even local and international getaways that are friendly for families.
Clark: This virtual assistant connects parents and tutors, allowing users to get matched with a qualified tutor based on their child's needs, schedule and monitor their kids' progress, and pay for services — eliminating the need to fumble with cash or Venmo after each study sesh.
Price: Free to download; service fees vary
Peanut: The New York Times calls this the "app for mothers who missed out on Tinder." Translation: Peanut lets you connect with like-minded mamas near you — because not all of us have the time, energy, or patience to make friends the old-fashioned way (and that's totally okay).
Kango: Dubbed the "Uber for kids," this app (available in the San Francisco and SoCal areas) not only book rides for tots and teens to and from school, soccer practice, play dates, and wherever else they're headed, but it also allows parents to hire childcare. Of course, all drivers and sitters are vetted via Trustline certification, rigorous background and reference checks, in-person interviews, and more, and their vehicles also undergo a complete inspection.
Price: Free to download; service fee is $9 per month, rides vary by distance and time, and sitting services range from $15 to $20 per hour per child
Stop, Breathe, & Think
Stop, Breathe, & Think: This award-winning app makes it easier for both parents and kids to hit pause in their busy lives and meditate. Stop, Breathe, & Think allows users to check in with their emotions and recommends guided meditations and yoga and acupressure videos based on how you feel. It's also compatible with Alexa and Slack (to name a few), and offers 30- to 60-day programs focused on stress, sleep, and other concerns.
Price: Free to download; subscription fees vary
MamaBear: You don't have to be a helicopter parent to enjoy everything this family safety app has to offer. You can monitor and preview your kid's social media activity (including on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube), stay up-to-date on their location and driving speed, set up custom "safe places" (like school, home, and friends' houses) and get notified when they've safely arrived to and from there, and more. Kids will find it helpful, too: They can see all of their family members' locations, send parents a "come get me" notification, and use the one-touch "panic" button that lets their parents know where they are in an emergency.
UnGlue: We'll be the first to admit that we've been caught staring at our screens more often than we'd like, and this app helps us and the next generation break free from device addiction. unGlue is a platform that allows kids to earn their screen time by completing chores and other tasks, and helps them monitor their online and offline time, while parents can monitor and limit their children's internet and entertainment content (think Facebook, Snapchat, and the like) usage. Kids can even use the Steps4Time tracker to earn more minutes of screen time by walking.
Kids Eat Free
Kids Eat Free: Freegan parents, rejoice! This crowd-sourced app tells you where to find free kids meals and deals every day. Simply type in your ZIP code or city and the day of the week, and you'll find out where to get lunch nearby for zero dollars.
Price: Free (of course)
Homepage photo: Expectful