Category Archives: some social media

smart phones and apps

My day begins with a cup of tea, a glance at the Boston Globe (the Sox won) then an email check (maybe some on-line dawdling, I mean social media) and then getting kids off to camp, lunches, carpool and all. It does not (yet) involve a smart phone but I think that is about to change. Hiawatha Bray, the great tech columnist for the Globe (he was introduced to our school group during a tour of the Globe last year and is very funny, too), has a column in today’s Globe about smart phones and Google’s Android operating system. Basically you can either get an iPhone (but with service only through A T & T) or any other smart phone (Samsung and Dell are featured) through any other carrier. Read more here.

capability mom looks at appsThen, in my inbox was an email from a friend (okay, I was messing around with her iPhone yesterday) about a site called MomswithApps.com. Great site for developers of apps and families who want good family friendly apps.

From the site :  In November of 2009, four moms (who connected over Twitter) got on the phone to talk about their apps, how they were marketing them, and how they could work together to help spread the word. They decided to form a Google Group, and invited other mom developers to join. It quickly became a discussion, brainstorming and marketing forum about family-friendly apps. How do you successfully launch an app? What should you price it? How are you making your app compatible with iPad? You get the drill.

Besides the moms, there were also dads, aunts, grandmas and reviewers who came on board. With critical mass they launched the Moms With Apps blog, which focuses on articles about kids, technology, developers, and weekly featured apps. Over the last 9 months (no pun intended) the group has attracted over 100 parent and family-friendly developers, in addition to app reviewers and industry specialists.

There are apps for reading, apps for learning, apps for travel ( I am playing with MomMaps this morning), apps for parents, apps for fun & creativity, and apps for special needs. On Friday, they feature an app that anyone – you don’t have to be a developer – can submit – so send them your favorite app. Here is the email address: momswithapps@gmail.com. capability mom looks at appsA great site – well organized and thoughtful with cool age appropriate apps.

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Filed under Creative outlets, family Activities, Feed your head, soul, self, Finds, math games, Parents and Kids, some social media, the mompreneurs

BlogCatalog

Now I'm a Mom Blogs - BlogCatalog Blog DirectoryI just was adding my blog to blog directories – and this popped up as a post. Since I really wasn’t planning on writing about this I will just refer you to this blog Thomas Shea http://8k53d.th8.us/ where I got the directories to list my blog in…bloggapedia, blog catalog, bloghub and blogarama. It is a good idea to do this and they are free – you can pay for an upgrade, too, and one or two (I forget, it was late) work as sites to connect with other bloggers. I will let you know more when I figure it out.

It is Camp Mom week and today we cleaned Mommy Car ( I am the best Mom ever!), bought a vacuum (more tremendous fun), had pizza at The Upper Crust (getting better), went to a (double) swim birthday party (decidedly better), had a terrific dinner from Whole Foods – the fresh pasta bar in Dedham at Legacy Place – watered all of the plants we said we would water for friends, walked the dog three or more times. I did do some work tonight – cleaned up twitter and messed with some social media.

What I did not do: choose a computer (mac or pc? desktop or laptop…suggestions welcome), buy a car or in any way darken the door of a car dealership, move my blog to wordpress.org…no change for you, dear reader,  but it is a big deal for me.

Anyway, that’s all.

Update: I wrote this assuming that I had posted Epic Fail – a post I started a few days ago.

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Filed under Creative outlets, Feed your head, soul, self, mom blogs, some social media, the mompreneurs

A super social day where some media did transpire…

but mostly it was social which works for me.

Yesterday I had a full day planned – hold on to your seats – tea with one friend, a meeting with another to look at some facebook and twitter stuff and a lunch with another friend then early camp pick-up – don’t ask – it is on the schedule.  One of the great things (aside from the super nice staff and delish teas) about meeting at L’Aroma is that I ended up seeing some more friends who were there for their own meeting – so nice! So even though our laptop struggled to connect to their wi-fi, we still covered a lot of ground.

I may have a problem with over-booking (don’t ask my husband, he has weighed in on this before) and it was a pretty tightly scheduled day –  so when everything ran late – I had to reschedule lunch (luckily I have a really nice friend and we are getting together this weekend instead) and was late to camp pick-up for the first time ever. No, really, ever. I have a car book that I have been reading every day in that carpool line – in the not only un-airconditioned Mommy Car but heated Mommy Car. (please let me just decide on a stupid car already. I swear I will take the first car that has a/c – I really would – it’s good thing my husband has a car with a/c and higher standards). So my cell phone battery died and there was a ten minute window when I couldn’t reach anyone – camp. kids –  you forget how dependent you become on technology. It’s not that it was ten minutes, it was the timing of those minutes – stuck behind a front loader going ten miles per hour while late for camp pick-up. Gosh, that was fun.

Fast forward to the recovery – a late lunch at Sofra where I picked up a friend’s farm share who couldn’t use her share this week – thank you, generous friend. Lunch was lovely and we ran into my doctor whose office is nearby – picking up her farm share – she hasn’t seen my youngest since she was a baby so that was nice.

Then an evening performance of the musical at the camp – so much wonderful energy and original music  – the cast was great and so talented. Fun! A very long day and I am looking forward to the weekend – I plan on walking, reading and, for something different, doing laundry.

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Filed under Feed your head, soul, self, Finds, mom blogs, some social media

get your tone right and go to a meetup for mashable

Here are some new things to check out:

A computer add-on or app that makes sure you are not too – em, inappropriate in your emails – http://www.tonecheck.com/

A Mashable meet-up on Lansdowne Street  tonight – Social media types – get going! http://www.meetup.com/mashable

Have fun – I will be harvesting vegetables and trying to come up with a good recipe using stuff I did not choose…

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Filed under Creative outlets, Feed your head, soul, self, Finds, local events, some social media, the mompreneurs

I visit the Mystic Valley Parkway and am pleasantly surprised.

Yes, the Mystic Valley Parkway, more specifically in Medford. Hmm…Capability, are you quite right today? and why were you in Medford on a Monday morning? Well, since you asked…

I had a traffic violation – What! Surely not! For what you wonder…texting while driving?  Never. Speeding, then? No, hardly my personality or within the capabilities of soon to be replaced Mommy car. Running a red light? Well, almost. Okay, first of all,  it was yellow.

It was that dicey intersection off Memorial Drive into Harvard Square – lots of lanes of traffic and some seriously aggressive drivers. I was nervous and felt like I was in the middle of the intersection and had to turn but the flashing blue lights in my rearview said otherwise. Dammit. I never get tickets because I am a rule follower and don’t do anything wrong…well, at least nothing egregious. So I got the ticket and promptly contested the ticket. I was fired up, I was in the right and I was ready to defend my actions…four years ago. Yes, I have not heard back from Cambridge Traffic until June of this year. Really. I was told they did a sweep and came up with my old ticket. Yay. My day in court! Cambridge, here I come! But not so fast, Cambridge Traffic Court moved to Medford (okay, so it’s a long story – skip to the end like you do in Cook’s Illustrated if you need to) and I had to be there by 8:30 am on a Monday morning. Hmm. That sure sounds like fun…traffic through Boston and Route 93 North and the Mystic Valley Parkway during rush hour on a Monday morning.

Long story continues… finally, July 19, my day to expunge my record, uphold my honor, set the record straight …I would triumph with my clear-headed logic and, mostly, being in the right. So scarier for me than presenting my case  in traffic court was actually getting to and finding the place. Waaay out of my comfort zone, this. But darling spouse printed clear directions and a map and after I made a few lunches, I was on my way. Note : the Mystic Valley Parkway is not identified on any street sign – evidently and as is customary for Massachusetts – you should just know it is Route 16, well, I did not but thanks to a desperate cell phone call home and a really nice court employee who had earlier told me that it was between Bertucci’s and Gold’s Gym, I found it and was there early. This is only particularly notable if you know that I am never early for anything.

SO. 8 am and time to kill and nowhere to go, barely any shade, no benches – save those across the parkway and that wasn’t happening. I walked over to Bertucci’s – which was not open until 11 – but a very gracious manager (Giovanni Cefalo) let me in and gave me water and access to the ladies’ room.  He was kind and gracious and the water was desperately needed – it was so very hot. When I finally got inside the courthouse, everyone was pleasant and professional. I waited and chatted with another woman – this is incredible –  she had a ticket from the same intersection! Really! Hmm, a more cynical person might find that suspect… Come on, Cambridge, work on that.

So my name was called and I went into a small conference room where a professional young woman introduced herself and the State Trooper. I promised to tell the truth (even raised my right hand) and then… I was dismissed. What? They couldn’t even find the ticket and I was excused, no fee, no nasty insurance surcharges but no chance to state my case (and I had practiced a little).  I was relieved and happy that it was dismissed and they could not have been nicer or more helpful.

Now, I had to figure out how to get home, which I did without incident and substantially less white knuckles on the steering wheel. I was back home by 9:30 and I stopped by the grocery store on the way. Chicken kabobs on the grill, with fresh veggies from a friend’s farm share and the farmer’s market as the celebratory dinner.

Update: My dad used to deliver newspapers along the MVP – who knew? Umm…I guess I kind of spaced that…sorry Dad.

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Filed under Creative outlets, Feed your head, soul, self, some social media, the mompreneurs

Spent the day on the computer and at the computer store – well, at least it was the Apple Store

First thing, after getting kids to camp and dog and self walked, was to cool off with a giant iced tea (it was really hot today and note to self – a bit speedy now – should have skipped that Starbuck’s green tea at 3 pm –  make a pot of decaf iced for tomorrow) and plunked myself down in front of the computer. I worked on two Facebook business pages, a Twitter account and set up some links. Sounds easy and parts of it are but it is time-consuming.  Luckily I can Google questions when I get stuck which was only twice today.   Also cleaned up some left-over LinkedIn messiness (Note to all:  if you hit invite all of your contacts and import your contact list it is not enough to delete the contact list, somehow there is a cycling effect and unless you go to your Inbox and Sent Invitations and manually delete them, people will continue to be harassed invited by you in perpetuity. Unless you have a thick skin and never get tired of emails asking why you invited your Aunt Flora to join LinkedIn, do this). You are welcome.

So, some social media and then I used a great resource Freecycle…and you will not believe what I got. First, read about Freecycle:

Welcome! The Freecycle Network™ is made up of 4,810 groups with 7,245,000 members across the globe. It’s a grassroots and entirely nonprofit movement of people who are giving (& getting) stuff for free in their own towns. It’s all about reuse and keeping good stuff out of landfills. Each local group is moderated by a local volunteer (them’s good people). Membership is free. To sign up, find your community by entering it into the search box above or by clicking on “Browse Groups” above the search box. Have fun!

I have located a jog stroller for a friend and cross-country skis for me.  When you have something to give away, you write “Offer” in the subject line and if you are looking for something “Wanted”. It is best to balance the two and now I am certainly on the ‘need to offer’ side as I asked (hope springs eternal) for an older Mac laptop. I did not get a laptop, I got a desktop model – maybe 5 years old seemingly in good condition. I drove it directly to the Apple Store where I was relieved of my very heavy desktop by a staff member and helped by a wonderful customer service person. Really knowledgeable and kind and patient with this Mac novice. I was embarrassed to admit I got the computer from Freecycle so I said it was from a friend – which it was, well, sort of. It feels very friendly to go to someone’s house and pick up something.  Nice community building.

So,  I am at the Apple Store and everything was going well until we tried to connect to the internet and when it didn’t work wirelessly – we tried the ethernet connection and that was a problem because the back of the unit had been removed by a previous tech-y owner. I left the newbie (to me) with the lovely Apple people and am waiting for the results of the diagnostic. How great is that? All I need is a mouse and a keyboard (hopefully) and I am good to go.  What you don’t know is that I am using the family computer – which means I have to wrangle for time on it – to write this as my aging useless stupid Dell laptop shuts down periodically and then I freak out. ‘Cuz it sucks to be working on something and then to see it crash. I hate Dell. Sorry, Dell. You have not been kind to me. I have given you too many chances, Dell, I am afraid it is over.

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Filed under Feed your head, soul, self, mom blogs, some social media

Day 2…The Joos Cleanse

Day 1 was okay and I only felt a little more tired than usual by day’s end but I realized (and thank you, Lauri, for the great suggestions) that I need more fuel for the day. I never did cut up my veggies and knew I should have.

Day 2 – exciting – Joos™ in am was great although I still had my tea and I felt a little spacey and not centered by mid-morning (maybe that was good for our CoffeeShopBloggers meeting, maybe not). Anyway, I picked up some veggie dishes at Whole Foods for lunch (which I think fit the cleanse in essence) and felt good.

I had my second Joos™ around 2 pm and really enjoyed it. There are different types of  Joos™  and I have tried three of them and liked them all…but I also like wheatgrass shots…grin (BTW, these are way more delicious than wheatgrass).

I have been snacking on almonds, fruit and humus and crackers – Oh, and I did find the roasted  seaweed snack at Trader Joe’s and like it…sweet and sort of like an appetizer.

I also got to try these great baked goods from Joos™ that look like mini-muffins (really like Whole Food’s brownie bites not that I like those or anything) – in a word, yummy. They give you an energy boost and are sweet and nutritious and, get this, they are made “… from JOOS™ pulp, which contains kale, chard, collards, celery, cucumber, apple, carrot, lemon, lime, ginger, and more ….and they are gluten-free and do not contain any refined sugars (even the chocolate chips are sugar free). They are organic, vegan, and high in protein and fiber.” Seriously?  They taste way to good to have all of those healthy attributes! I ate them knowing all of this and was so pleasantly surprised.

All in all a busy day and I felt good – not even minding not eating the ice cream at the school party last night…much.

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Filed under Feed your head, soul, self, Food, healthy, mom blogs, some social media