My Favorite iPhone Apps

Posted on May 19th, 2011 by Jean

You can get the iPhone 3GS for $49.00, which I what I recently did. The monthly service plan is actually $20 less than what I was paying on the original iPhone 2G ($40 compared to $60). Upgrades between the 2G and 3G include recording video and texting photos.
What’s the first thing I did when I received my new phone? Started downloading apps!
My Favorite Apps
When I have some down time, I visit Facebook to see what is up with all of my friends. It’s easy to add a photo or a location like I did when I was chowing down at In-N-Out Burger (pre-diet).
Yes, I’m digging being the Mayor of McDonalds. This app allows you to check in to local businesses, become Mayor, and take advantage of special offers. Newbie (first check-in) Specials include $2. off Arby’s Market Fresh sandwich and 20% off at RadioShack. You can opt out of FB/Twitter sharing if you’d like, meaning you don’t have to broadcast your whereabouts.
Hipstamatic really should have a post all to itself. It’s a cool photo filter program that helps you create amazingly fun photos. A few filters come with the app, and additional filters can be purchased.

The top game for me and my entire family would be Angry Birds. All of the versions. Free, upgraded, Seasons, Rio… they are all great. Rio just released an update, and has several updates scheduled. This newest update includes a Beach Volleyball level.

This app notifies you when there’s a sale on airfare. Tell the app which airport you fly out of, and it will send you great deals. Last year we flew to Sacramento for under $40 per person.
Want to know the latest about Arnold & Maria? TMZ is the app for celebrity news. You’ve heard of TMZ. They were the first to report Michael Jackson died, and the first to release photos of Rihanna. They provided pics of Tiger Woods’ smashed SUV. If you can’t pick up an Enquirer, download TMZ.
Hypnotic mind-play. Waiting in the doctor’s office? Play Bejeweled. Hubby watching football? Play Bejeweled. Kids want supervision in the shower? Play Bejeweled.
Kids, yes, I’ve got ’em. Sometimes they need to keep themselves busy like when we’re waiting on food at a restaurant, or waiting for the fireworks to start while camped out across the river from Laughlin. You will need apps for them too.
Kids’ Favorite Apps
Burp, Fart, Relief. Totally disgusting, just what kids like. Many foul burps, farts, sighs and screams from which to choose.
With the addition of the new Charlie character who has tiger’s blood, the pygmies survival rate decreases even more. You are the Pocket God, controlling the fate of the little island pygmies. You can strike them with lightening, have ants attack them, throw them in the volcano, drop them into the ocean and spear them. You can give them fish and coconuts, help them start a fire, show them a double rainbow across the sky. Good or bad, it’s up to you. Err, up to your kids, I mean!
Yes, you’ll want to take the phone away and compete with them on this app too. Jumping from platform to platform, avoiding aliens, grabbing a jet pack, it’s all fun!
Sometimes they just want to be mellow, coloring pictures. This is the app for that. They choose a scene and color it by tapping first a colored pencil and then the area of the screen to fill. Once all the white space is filled, a party horn plays.
Your app store is right on your iPhone, or you can visit the app store on iTunes.
What are your favorite apps?

California Vacation ~ Part 2

Posted on October 23rd, 2010 by Jean

There’s a large, prestine park near my parents’ home, so after a delicious breakfast at Huckleberrys, we all took a walk with Grandma and Papa to exert some energy and enjoy a little more bonding time.

Then we were off to Six Flags Discovery Kingdom in Vallejo. It used to be Marine World, and is an aquarium, zoo and theme-park. If you go, buy your tickets online. Adults pay kids’ rate. It’s also worth the extra $5 for premium parking reducing your trek to the entrance.
It’s impossible to cover all that ground in one afternoon, so we stuck to the zoo and kiddie rides.

Lunch was ridiculously expensive. The “special” at the Beachside Burger Shack was four burgers, four fries and four sodas for $44.

Tom and I had guacamole burgers, and with the kids’ chicken baskets, our total came to around $50.
A highlight of the day was watching this young adult tiger eating meat treats in his very own swimming pool.

After five hours, we were more than happy to return to our hotel and crash in our beds. Tom got up to retrieve us a pizza from the restaurant next door. Food tastes so much better when you are completely exhausted.
We slept soundly, and awoke to a beautiful morning for travel. Our flight was scheduled for noon, so after packing and checking out, we met Mom and Dad at my brother’s house to say our good byes. I hope we don’t let another three years pass before our next visit.
• Do you pay the exorbitant dining rates at amusement parks?
• Aquarium, zoo, or theme park ~ which is your favorite?
• Can you identify the animal in the bottom row of the Rides & Zoo collage?

To view our youngest daughter’s fondest memories of the trip, visit my guest post at The Mama Mary Show.

How To: Raise Hams

Posted on November 16th, 2009 by Jean

“Come on, Tom. It’ll be fun!”, I pleaded. “It’s just you and me. I’ll set up my camera, and you grab your meat, all nine pounds of it.”

Fits of laughter.

“Ok, I’ll take my big cannon and show you who’s boss.” Tom cajoled.

More laughter and innuendo.

The buzz of the evening wore off, but the playful conversation lingered in my head. Was he ready for his close up? Yes, actually he was. While I set up the tripod, he cleared the counter and set up an array of spices and secret ingredients for we were making an instructional video. Not the type Carrie Prejean would record but an honest to goodness How To video for making jerky.

I should call him One Take Tom for he could expound on the subject without missing a beat. It was hard to decide what should fall to the cutting room floor, or be deleted via iMovie. He’s my husband, and I felt a bit guilty omitting recorded episodes of meat grinding, salt sprinkling, and the tearing open of hot pepper packets. But cut I did, and replaced with photos overlaid with text. Even with all the snips, the video runs nearly seven minutes long. I’ll post the YouTube link below for those interested in jerking their meat.

With Mommy and Daddy making videos, it seemed natural when my seven year old asked to record her recipe for a soda drink. She wrote down her ingredients, sending Tom to the store for more Diet Coke. She had plenty of Pepsis which are on hand for guests. Her little sister was her lovely assistant, nodding her head and chiming in at just the right moment. I think my girls had a lot of presence for seven and four. Who else but a child would combine the two powerhouses of cola?

• Coke or Pepsi?
• Carrie Prejean, Donald Trump, or Perez Hilton?
• Behind the camera or in front of it?

Tom’s YouTube debut! How To: Make Elk Jerky