Delicious Apps

Posted on January 14, 2013 by Tanya

 Grocery IQ – FREE – This is my go-to app for grocery shopping. With this app, you can scan barcodes or type in what you want listed, arrange your list by aisles for your favorite store, and email your list to others to shop for you! It is easy to add items on the phone app or get your basic list added in on your computer to then sync with your phone. As you purchase the items, you tap the list and it removes it so all you have left are those items you have not yet purchased. I always begin my weekly shopping trip by pulling up this list and tapping on all those basic items I always need to buy. There is another feature that would be great if it worked in my area – “Savings card” where you can add store coupons to your list and they will automatically be counted when the store rings up your savings card.

 Better Homes and Gardens Recipe – FREE – This is a helpful, easy to use app with other 500 recipes to choose from all the basic cooking categories (breads, desserts, grilling, main dish…). You can search for recipes based on the amount of cooking time or topic, including “5 Ingredients or Less”. And for those who are more adventuresome, there are “How-To Secrets” for cooking all the basics.

 Real Simple – No Time to Cook – FREE – This is an awesome app allowing you to select the category of food (poultry, beef, pork, pasta, vegetarian…) and the amount of time you have (20, 30 or 40 minutes). It will pull up a lot of recipes from which to choose. If nothing else, it should give you an idea of what to prepare!

Omaha Steaks – FREE – Need to know how long to grill that steak? Check out this app! It provides you with grill time for the cut of meat you have, a steak 101, Recipes and more. And there is always a featured recipe. If that picture does not get your whistle whetted for a slab of beef, I don’t know what will! And, of course, you can shop Omaha Steaks directly from your phone!

And for the coffee lovers…

 Starbucks – FREE – This app lets you find Starbucks near you (based on whether they are drive-throughs only, have wireless, serve food, accept mobile payment and more). You can load your Starbucks card from your computer and then pay from your phone. Of course, to do this you must set up an account. But that’s a small price to pay to get that frappuccino or latte just like you want it!

 Dunkin’ Donuts – FREE – Similar to the Starbucks app, this one lets you pay from your phone, clip offers, find stores and more. You can find a store near you and it will automatically tell you where it is and what it has to offer (drive thru, wifi, directions, hours, phone number and more). You can easily purchase a gift card and have it text, emailed or sent via Facebook. You clearly get a lot along with that cup o Joe!

Enjoy these apps as you enjoy the food they are meant to connect you with. If you need a quick pick me up cup of coffee or are planning dinner for your family, these apps strive to make it all easier and less stressful. And that is a winning combination for me!

New Year – New Chance!

Posted on January 1, 2013 by Tanya

Now that we have made it to another new year and 2013 is here, have you begun to make all those New Year’s resolutions or have you already tried but broken several? Try this instead – come up with three things you really need to do this year:

1. For You

2. For Someone Else

3. For Work

Find that one thing that you’ve been needing to do for yourself, a loved one and your professional life and commit to it. Allow yourself to slack off, to forget, to ignore, but keep pushing for it. Just because you slip up doesn’t mean you have to give up.

Let’s use time management as a way to succeed with these three goals for the next year. We all need to better manage our time so we can accomplish what we need to. That’s right, what we need to and not necessary so we can accomplish more. More is not always better. In fact, more may be why you never seem to complete a new year’s resolution. So, shift your thinking about and tackle this year’s a little differently.

Now that you have just three goals in mind and you know you have all year to do them, let’s plan how you are going to be successful. Because you can.

Time Management – everyone has an idea about what you should do and how you should do it, but the key is finding what works for you. One very successful friend of mine always takes two hours on Sunday afternoon/evening to plan her schedule for the upcoming week. This is an arrangement she has with her family and they know they cannot interrupt her as she plans. I think this is a wonderful idea and am set on trying it myself. It may or may not work for me (or you), but it is one way to try.

Another is to keep your schedule going. By this I mean that you always record your appointments, dates, upcoming events in a format that will work for you. I use iCal on my MacBook Pro. This synchronizes with my iPhone and I can import invitations and dates from within emails. This also allows me to track back to the originating email to get the details I may have forgotten. (More on this in a later post).

What does this all have to do with these three goals you are setting for yourself? Schedule them in your day! Actually put in your calendar some time to work on your goals. One of mine is to continue with my Bikini Boot Camp. To help me keep this goal (1. For Me), I have it on my calendar. Since I use a computer based calendar, I can put it in there and set the repeat feature and forget it. This helps ensure that I don’t forget or ignore that 530am commitment!

So my goal (2. For Others) is for my family. This also involves planning. And my iCal, Grocery IQ app, Better Homes and Gardens app and the Real Simple No Time to Cook app. (More on these in a post coming later in January). It is imperative that I plan our meals, even if only a couple each week. It has also worked well for me to make a lasagna or casserole that we can easily heat up for lunches a couple of times during the week. This keeps us from eating out so much and can keep the ole PB&J from getting tiring. Also, by planning, I can ensure that I have the ingredients I need and can use some odd ingredients for more than one recipe that week. I don’t often buy potatoes. So, that week I may make a meal with baked potatoes as well as home made fries or hash browns.

And my goal (3. For Work) is for my jobs. I have two contract positions (both part-time equivalent) that must come first and then my work with Structured Chaos. So again, my calendar is a pivotal part of my success. I have my calendars set to certain colors (NC OMC is orange, NC PACC is yellow and Structured Chaos is brown). Plus, paydays are green, bill days are red, one son is green and one blue…This allows me to see at a glance where my time is going. Since I will go back and look at the time I actually spent and what I actually did for one job or another, I can really tell if I am balancing things out.

Find what will work for you and stick with that plan. That alone may well help you to achieve all three of your goals for 2013!

Happy New Year!!!