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6 Great Apps for the Modern Parent

6 Great Apps for the Modern Parent

Most of us read George Orwell’s 1984 in high school – a time when technology had reached the height that the government had access to its citizens’ every movement and conversation – at home, at work, and on the street. As adults, of course, we find that reprehensible and have genuine fears today about surveillance and over-reach. Not so with our kids, however. It is a dangerous world, emergencies happen, and our ability to protect ourselves and our kids is important. So is ease of finding great stuff to do as a family and providing educational experiences for our kids. Technology brings that to us through some great apps for the modern parent. Here are eight that provide both security and fun.

1. Baby Monitor 3G

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    This is the first HD quality baby monitor from any device on video. It is receiving rave reviews around the world and was named one of the 5 top lifestyle apps in over 100 countries, and currently has over 1/2 million parent users. Here are its most important features:

    • Works with all devices – easy set up
    • Provides live HD video anywhere
    • Baby activity log entries
    • Great reach over WiFi, LTE and 3G
    • Clear sound and picture
    • Adjustable night light
    • Parents can talk to their babies in real time with their own voice
    • Available in 13 different languages for true global reach

    2. Red Rover

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      This app is relatively new, but is a great resource for parents who are traveling with kids or just looking for local attractions and events that are family-oriented. Each event or attraction is accompanied by a photo. Tap on the photo and you will get detailed information about hours, event details, pricing, etc. Users can also buy tickets and locate close-by restaurants, shopping etc. Events and attractions are updated on a daily basis – a huge plus.

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      Users can sign up for the app at Red Rover and then download the app to their iPhones. (Note: also available for Android)

      Currently, the cities are limited to New York, Boston, Atlanta, Hamptons/North Fork, and San Francisco; however, many more are coming soon – Washington, D.C., Chicago, Los Angeles, Seattle, Austin, Dallas, Houston, Philadelphia, and others.

      Best advice? Download the free app and keep it updated as you plan your family trips. This will be a great resource.

      3. Mom Maps

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        Whether you are in your own home town or traveling with your kids, this app will tap you into anything and everything available for your kids by categories. Imagine traveling by car long distances and finding a need to get your kids out of the car for some “runaround” time. Now you can locate parks, indoor playgrounds. Or suppose you are on vacation and it rains all day – finding an indoor play place or activity is the perfect solution.

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        The premium version lets you get reviews and recommendations from other moms and give your own feedback after a visit to a spot. Other features include:

        • Ability to bookmark and save favorites
        • Users can view and upload video
        • GPS with directions
        • Ability to share with friends on social media
        • 28,000 locations in 28 different metro areas with more being added regularly, both in the U.S. and major cities abroad

        It’s free and available for iOS and Android – premium version will give you reviews and feedback.

        4. SurfBalance

        SurfBalance

          Here’s the perfect parental control for helping kids develop smarter web use. This tool will let a parent limit, guide, and verify where their kids go online, through iOS or Android. Here is all that a parent can do:

          • The app provides over 1,000 safe links for kids. Parents can modify as they wish.
          • Surf Balance then tracks kids’ usage and provide reports so they can see how long they have spent on each site and in total during a time period or a day. Parents can set time limits, so kids learn how to “budget” their online time.
          • Parents can block certain sites, and kids will have to ask permission for access. This gives parents time to review those sites and approve of them before giving permission
          • Parents can also request daily or weekly email reports regarding their kids’ usage.
          • Reasonable price – $4.99

          There are certainly many other good apps for web controls, but this one has the added feature of time budgeting – a good skill for kids to learn.

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          5. White Noise Baby

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            Adults use “white noise” machines all of the time to enhance their sleep. Why not for baby too? For both IOS and Android ($0.99), the White Noise Baby app will provide your baby’s favorite white noise for both soothing sounds when s/he is cranky or for when it’s time to sleep.

            Features include the following:

            • Looped sounds – car ride, music, hair dryer, fan, conch shell, train, heartbeat, Doppler ultrasound of the womb and much more.
            • Parents can choose a single sound or a combination to be played sequentially
            • A shut-off timer that gradually fades the sound
            • Timer that can be re-activated if it detects crying, to repeat the soothing sounds again
            • Report log so parents can determine which sounds are the most effective

            6. Smart Ice4 Family

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              This may be one of the most important apps a family can have, especially if there are family members with medical conditions that should be relayed to EMS and hospital personnel when the patient is unable to speak for themselves.

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              Data such as name, age, medical conditions/alerts, insurance, emergency contact information, medical history and more. All messages can be recorded in advance by the user, and they can be accessed by a simple tap.

              Information can be stored for up to 8 family members. Important features include:

              • EMS alert buttons that automatically dial EMS that include location
              • Automated message plays once phone is opened giving EMS personnel instructions on the use of the app
              • A built-in HIPAA statement with email capability – no filling out long forms at the hospital.
              • Insurance information
              • Listing of all medical conditions and current medications
              • Preferred hospital statement
              • More

              Lots of peace-of-mind for $3.99!

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              Published on July 22, 2021

              20 Healthy and Tasty Family Meals Ideas to Try This Week

              20 Healthy and Tasty Family Meals Ideas to Try This Week

              It’s 5 p.m., and you’re exhausted. The kids are hungry, but no one knows what they want to eat for dinner. With very little energy, you force yourself into the kitchen and look through every cabinet, hoping for a spark of inspiration. Eventually, you toss a few ingredients together and hope for the best. It won’t win any prizes and falls short of what you consider “healthy,” but it fills everyone’s stomachs.

              Feeding a family can be stressful, even tiresome. It’s hard to find the energy and creativity needed to cook healthy but simple family meals. It’s easy to fall into the “anything goes” mentality. When you’ve got a busy lifestyle, meals become more about survival and less about nutrition.

              Here are 20 quick and healthy—but tasty—recipes followed by tips on making these family meals more nutritious. These recipes can help you have a healthy family meal on the table in an hour or less. Remember, swap ingredients out if someone in your family has dietary restrictions or if you avoid certain foods.

              1. Mini Meatloaves With Green Beans and Potatoes

                These miniature meatloaves come together quickly and cook faster, too. You can have a family favorite on the table, paired with seasoned potatoes and fresh green beans, in just 40 minutes.

                Get the recipe here.

                2. One-Pan Chicken Parmesan Pasta

                  This classic will taste like you spent hours cooking, but the preparation and clean-up couldn’t be quicker. One-pot cooking makes this dish practical, while fresh basil, parmesan, and garlic add a special touch.

                  To try this recipe, go here.

                  3. Sheet-Pan Chicken Fajitas

                    Skip the restaurant and make fajitas at home. The ingredients go on one sheet pan, meaning you won’t spend all night cleaning. Zesty chicken, bell peppers, and warm tortillas can be on the table in 40 minutes. Add sour cream, salsa, guacamole, lettuce, diced tomato, and any other favorite toppings.

                    Check out the recipe here.

                    4. Philly Cheese Steak Stuffed Peppers

                      Lose the carbs but keep the cheesesteak flavors with this quick family meal. Kids will love the pepper “bowls,” and you’ll love giving them a meal full of veggies and protein to keep them healthy.

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                      Try it tonight. Get the recipe here.

                      5. Chipotle Chicken Quinoa Burrito Bowl

                        This veggie-packed meal adds an extra boost by using the superfood quinoa instead of rice. Flavorful yet simple, this meal makes an excellent packable lunch or dinner for your whole family.

                        Find the recipe here.

                        6. Spinach and Chicken Skillet With Lemon and Parmesan

                          The complex flavors of lemon and parmesan come together nicely in this gourmet-like dish, but you don’t have to exert the effort or spend as much as a gourmet meal.

                          Get the recipe for this dish here.

                          7. Oven-Fried Fish and Chips

                            Fish and chips can also sometimes be healthy as evident in this oven-fried version. You won’t miss the calories with this favorite family meal.

                            You can find the recipe here.

                            8. Pineapple-Teriyaki Chicken

                              Tangy pineapple and sweet teriyaki will have everyone coming back for seconds. Frozen vegetables make this simple family dish even easier to make and enjoy.

                              Find the recipe here.

                              9. Mozzarella, Basil, and Zucchini Frittata

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                                This egg dish is usually served for breakfast, but a frittata can make a fantastic dinner, too. High in protein, packed with zucchini, and delicious, there’s no reason to wait until morning.

                                Try it tonight. Get the recipe here.

                                10. Chicken and Sweet Potato Grill Packets

                                  Skip the pans and throw everything into foil with this fun family recipe. Kids will love loading ingredients into their pack, and you’ll love its versatility and simplicity.

                                  The recipe for this meal can be found here.

                                  11. Chicken and Spanish “Rice”

                                    Cauliflower takes the place of rice in this low-carb family meal, but it’s so flavorful and filling, no one will miss it.

                                    Find the recipe here.

                                    12. Honey Chicken Stir Fry

                                      This honey chicken stir fry is the healthier version of a restaurant favorite that can be served up quicker than you can order it.

                                      Find the recipe here.

                                      13. Chicken Skewers With Tzatziki

                                        Greek chicken and tzatziki sauce will have you yearning for the Mediterranean, but you can make this recipe at home for your family to enjoy.

                                        This easy recipe can be found here.

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                                        14. Healthy Walking Tacos

                                          Traditional walking tacos are a party favorite, but they’re not usually healthy. However, this recipe keeps it fun while making it more nutritious.

                                          Find out how to make it here.

                                          15. Slow-Cooker Chicken Noodle Soup

                                            This classic comfort meal can be ready when you walk in the door. All you have to do is add noodles, and it’s ready to serve.

                                            The recipe can be found here.

                                            16. Cheesy Chicken and Rice Casserole

                                              This usually takes a little over an hour, but the preparation time is only 30 minutes. You’ll love how easy it is, and the cheesy rice is sure to please.

                                              Find the recipe here.

                                              17. Crockpot Rotisserie-Style Chicken

                                                Skip the checkout line and have a rotisserie-style chicken ready at home. A staple in many quick meals, you might find this family meal recipe among your most-used.

                                                Get the recipe for this flavorful chicken here.

                                                18. Santa Monica Street Tacos

                                                  Named after a simple taco found on the streets of California, you’ll be surprised that something with only a few ingredients can be so flavorful. Your kids will surely enjoy them.

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                                                  Find the recipe here.

                                                  19. Pizza Pasta Salad

                                                    Enjoy the flavor of pizza without the hassle of making a crust. Use a fun pasta shape to make this even more appealing to your family, especially kids.

                                                    Try it tonight. Get the recipe here.

                                                    20. Slow-Cooker Lasagna Soup

                                                      Everyone loves lasagna, but it can be time-consuming and messy to make. However, this soup version has the taste you want but with the ease of a crockpot.

                                                      Get the recipe here.

                                                      Bonus: 3 Simple Ways to Make Meals Healthier

                                                      Eating healthy doesn’t have to take a lot of money, time, or thought. Any improvements are a big step in the right direction.

                                                      Here are three easy ways you can make meals healthier for your family.

                                                      1. Lose the Sugar

                                                      Are you looking to improve your health? Cut processed sugars from your diet—the more, the better, and that includes artificial sweeteners.[1] Why? Studies show that sugar increases the risks for weight gain, heart disease, acne, type-2 diabetes, depression, cancer, fatty liver disease, cellular aging, and low energy levels.[2]

                                                      2. Avoid Highly Processed Foods

                                                      Many processed foods are fine to eat. Even fresh fruit and vegetables go through some processing to stay fresh longer. However, highly processed foods have added salt, sweeteners, saturated fats, preservatives, and artificial colors. These types of food have been linked to heart disease, diabetes, and high blood pressure.[3]

                                                      3. Replace Simple Carbs for Complex Carbs

                                                      Lowering daily carbs can do wonders for your health. Studies show that low-carb diets lead to lower insulin levels, lower bad cholesterol levels, visceral fat loss, weight loss, reduced appetite, and can be therapeutic for many brain disorders.[4]

                                                      When eating carbs, choose complex carbs over simple carbs. Simple carbs, such as white flour, rice, and degermed cornmeal, lack nutrients and spike blood sugar levels. Complex carbs, such as sweet potato, brown rice, and oats, are usually more nutritious and aren’t digested as quickly, giving more sustained energy and less of an insulin spike.[5]

                                                      Enjoy Family Meals With Less Stress!

                                                      Dinner can be enjoyable again now that you’re armed with simple and nutritious recipes for your family. These healthy and tasty family meal recipes can help you feel even better about what you serve. Best of all, you’ll have the extra time and energy you saved from cooking and spend more time with your family.

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                                                      More Healthy Eating Tips

                                                      Featured photo credit: Jimmy Dean via unsplash.com

                                                      Reference

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