Somewhere between dropping the kids off at school, picking them up from daycare, getting one to soccer practice and the other to dance class (not to mention dinner, bath time and homework), it becomes clear: There aren’t enough hours in the day. Maybe you need to let some things go—or maybe all you need is a little help. Here are eight apps that will help keep you organized and, with any luck, give you some extra time to sit back and enjoy all those activities you’re so busy with in the first place.
1. Waze Waze is a cut above other navigation apps because it allows travellers to report traffic, collisions and construction in real time and then uses that info to reroute fellow drivers. It alerts you if a police cruiser is stationed up ahead, and syncs with your calendar and Facebook events (no more fumbling for an address on your way out the door!).
2. Chatbooks We all intend to organize, edit and print the photos on our smartphones, but who has the time? Enter Chatbooks. The app lets you order hard copies of your pics by generating prints or photo books from images you post to Facebook or Instagram (or those you favourite on your phone). Prices are in USD and shipping to Canada can take a while—but it’s worth it if it means never falling behind on prints again.
3. FamilyWall A hub for all of your family’s various commitments, FamilyWall is a replacement for those big calendars and corkboards that so many of us had in our kitchens growing up. Family members can sync calendars, share photos, engage in group chats and check in to various locations so everyone can keep track of one another. Your core family is your “circle,” but you can add additional wider circles to share information with grandparents, other extended family, and friends.
4. Flipp We all like to save a few bucks, but who has time to comb through flyers and clip coupons? Flipp does the searching for you by scanning store flyers in your area for deals and coupons that can be “clipped” and easily printed out. Flipp comes in especially handy at retailers that offer on-the-spot price matching, and the app has just added a function that matches savings with the items on your grocery list. (For ideas on how to save tons of money on disposable diapers, click here.)
5. Stocard Retail reward cards can be lucrative…if you happen to have the right one on you at the right time. Stocard eliminates the need to physically carry reward cards by keeping digital versions of all your plastic in one place. Simply launch the app at the checkout and let the cashier scan a bar code to collect or redeem points.
6. TeamSnap Having kids who play sports adds another layer of complexity to family life. TeamSnap is specifically for parents who need to manage team life (especially those who have been roped into coaching or organizing). Use the app to distribute roster contact info, post game and practice schedules, track attendance and payments, and share photos and location details.
7. ChoreMonster This app makes it easy for parents to assign chores and offer a point value for each one. Kids can then view the list online or in the app, checking off their duties as they go to unlock rewards of your choosing, like a pizza night or an hour of Xbox play. The interface is bright and fun, and it makes a game out of making the bed and taking out the garbage.
8. Baby Feed Timer Feeding a newborn can be an exhausting, seemingly endless job, made all the more frustrating when you’re trying to document feeding sessions while half-asleep, with one hand and in the dark. Baby Feed Timer reminds you of which breast to start on, times how long baby has been eating, anticipates when she might be hungry again and tracks diaper changes and sleep schedules.