Tag Archives: iPhone

My Take: iPad 2 vs. Kindle Fire

Okay, I tried and I simply couldn’t resist. Yes, when I decided to get the Kindle Fire, I was thinking it would be an adequate replacement for the iPad, which I thought of as too expensive. And before I really get started, I want to give full disclosure. Kile and I both wanted e-readers for Christmas this year. For a long time we couldn’t decide between the Nook and the Kindle. Then they announced the Kindle Fire. And for a bit more than we were planning on spending, we could get a quasi-iPad. It seemed like the best choice.

But I have to admit that the usability of the Kindle Fire was pretty unimpressive. I wondered if I had finally become utterly spoiled by Apple products. The touchscreen was nowhere near as responsive as my iPhone and playing Angry Birds on it was such a disappointment that I stopped trying. I found myself using the Kindle to primarily read books and saving the other functions for my iPhone.

And then I started to wonder about the iPad. I had always written it off in the past as being an oversized iPhone. But the Kindle Fire helped me to see that having the larger display could be a great thing in certain circumstances. Such as watching movies. And then I got VERY frustrated with the way the Kindle Fire handled file transfers. Which is to say: not at all. There is a micro-USB port, but when you use it to connect to your computer, you can’t actually transfer any files over. At least not in any way I could find. You could drag files over to the Kindle until the cows came home but they wouldn’t ever show up on the Kindle. You have to email the files over to a special address you receive when you register your device. Oh and it can take several hours for a file to show up. Case in point: when we went to Elko this last time I wanted a pattern for an item I was knitting to display on my Kindle so I wouldn’t have to use my laptop every time I wanted to see what to do next. I emailed the file over and kept checking for the rest of the day. The file finally delivered sometime in themiddle of the night, at least SIX hours after I had sent it. Are you kidding me?

And say you want to transfer one of your movies you have a digital copy for so you can watch it on a car trip? For starters, the Kindle will only play certain formats. And of course none of the formats your digital copy was delivered as. So you have to find a file converter to convert it for you. If you can. And say you get the file converted and you finally are able to transfer the movie to your Kindle (for some reason you can transfer these sorts of files via the USB). Don’t bother looking for the movie under the Videos tab. No, apparently that’s only for Amazon content. Your movie can be located under the Gallery tab. UGH.

And that’s only just a taste of what can be kind of aggravating about the Kindle. Perhaps if I still used a PC laptop, had an Android phone and didn’t know the benefits of Apple products, this stuff would roll off my back easier. Or I wouldn’t notice. But I have been converted to Apple goodies and I do know that technology doesn’t have to be so frustrating. So wondered about the iPad.

I had some extra cash after the holidays and started looking at iPad 2’s on eBay. I knew I wanted the iPad 2 since we had recently purchased an Apple TV and there was some functionality with AirPlay and mirroring that can only be used with the iPad 2 or the iPhone 4s (I still have the iPhone 4; I’m holding off until the 5 is released to upgrade). Luckily I was able to find a really good deal, bid and won. Days later, the iPad 2 was in my hot little hands.

And yes, the iPad just works so much better than the Kindle. I didn’t want to believe it, but oh lord, it’s true. Transferring files is a piece of cake (and exactly like it is with the iPhone so I was already accustomed to it), the touchscreen is so much more responsive and typing is MUCH easier ( I’m writing this post up on the iPad in fact and it’s a breeze, not to mention the WordPress app is fantastic). I still imagine I’ll prefer reading on the Kindle (though I’ve been toying with iBooks and I do think I prefer the usability and interface to that of the Kindle) since its much easier to hold for extended periods of time and I got the cutest cover for it off of Etsy. But for pretty much everything else? The iPad wins hands down. I should have gotten one ages ago.

It seems a little silly to have a full Kindle Fire just for reading books. But I just don’t feel ready to write it off altogether yet. Time will tell. If you’re on the fence about the iPad, just get it. Especially if you have other Apple devices at home. In the tablet market, it is the one to beat. For very good reason. The Kindle Fire is a fine device, but it’s just not even remotely in the same league.

Tech Wars

One thing about living in this new, technological age, is that lines are drawn in brand loyalty and never the two shall meet.  Everyone has an opinion about SOMETHING.  Even if you don’t care about game systems, chances are you care about cellphones.  And if you don’t care about cellphones, chances are you care very deeply about your home computing.  So I’m here to ask: What side are you on?  And then to ask (if your choices differ from mine): What, are you nuts??

Example #1 – Game systems.  This one is tricky because there are three major systems.  Nintendo Wii.  Microsoft Xbox 360.  Sony Playstation 3.   In some cases, you can enjoy and be loyal to two of the three available systems.  HOWEVER, I’ve found that those two will almost always be the Xbox and the Wii.  Playstation stands alone.  A good example of this is MY family.  We have both a Wii and an Xbox.  This is driven by games available to play and general usefulness of the system.   I haven’t played a Playstation since there was only the original to choose from but I feel comfortable in saying that the Playstation 3 has nothing I’m interested in having.  I have a blu-ray player.  I have two kickass gaming systems.  Why on EARTH would I want a Playstation 3?  In this particular instance, either you’re a fan of the Playstation 3.  Or.  You’re not.

We’re not.  By the way.

Example #2 – Home computing.  Once upon a time, we were PC people.  We could appreciate the aesthetics of the Mac but all the programs we wanted to run were on the PC, we were used to PCs and the PCs seemed like a better bang for our buck.  But things changed over the years.  The Macs became more accessible.  More programs were available for both PCs and Macs.  And the quality of PCs started to dip so low that suddenly I was more interested in a computer that might last me two years even if it was a little more expensive.  Because at least I would know it was built to last more than five months.  And also, the iPhone is totally a gateway drug to becoming a Mac user.  But more on that in a minute.

We were dedicated PC people!  Moreover, we were dedicated to Dell PCs, which at the time were one of the PC brands out there.  You could get a great computer for a reasonable price and have it last two years easy.  See, two years is my “lifecycle” for computers, more or less.  I generally expect to need an upgrade after two years.  As far as I’m concerned, I’m not unreasonable expecting my computers to last that long.  The Dells used to be able to be able to manage that with their hands tied behind their back.

But then I got a crappy Dell laptop and it all went to pot.  When I bought a new computer that year, I bought a Mac.  And I haven’t’ looked back since.  I LOVE my Mac.  I love that it works and I don’t get blue screens of death.  It’s a great laptop and has been worth every penny.

Mac people and PC people.  Never the two shall meet.  It’s like Democrats and Republicans.  They’re just diametrically opposed.

Example #3 – Cellphones.  Once upon a time, cellphones were just something you used to make a call when you weren’t near a landline.  If you were lucky, you might be able to play Tetris on yours.  Or use it as a calculator.  Back in those days, we would just take whatever AT&T had as their “Free with a contract!” phones and be done with it.  But then.  The iPhone was born.

And it all changed.

Oh sure.  People are saying “What about Blackberry?  Those were around LONG before iPhones.”  To that I say “PFFT!” and “PSSSHH!”.  And “Bah.”  Basically any dismissive sound you can think of.  Because Blackberrys back then were just fancy cellphones.  Oh sure, they had the full keyboard and blah blah SNORE.  I’m saying the cellphone world changed with the iPhone.  And I’m sticking to it.  Because all the sudden it became, “Oh you can use your email on your phone and it looks like MAGIC.  And the web too?!  Shut the front door!”

I will admit, I wasn’t terribly impressed until I got my first iPhone.  Those of you who have been loyal enough to hang around here for a while probably remember when I won it at a BlogHer conference.  And I swear to you, it was like the heavens opened up.  This phone was INCREDIBLE.

The rest of the cellphone companies out there went “Huh?  Wait… WHAT?” and scrambled to put together their own kind of iPhone ripoff.  And, call me a phone snob, but… I’m not impressed.  You Droid lovers… you can have it.  It’s still just a PC as far as I’m concerned.  Just like an iPhone is a Mac.  Confused?

Let us recap the previous example.  PCs are buggy as heck and don’t last for shite.  Same with the Droid/esque phones.  Macs are beautiful and work like magic because I’m convinced they are powered by teeny leprechauns.  Same with the iPhones.  No, really… it works because everything is meant to work together.  That’s how they make it.  Everything fits together like it was meant to be because it was.  Not pieced together with parts from the lowest bidding vendor.  “Here’s, lets plug this into that and see if they work together!”  Sometimes they do.  And… sometimes they don’t.  I never have this problem with my iPhone.  It always works.  And it always looks gorgeous.

Plus, you know.  It led the field.  The other companies would be pushing barely updated Blackberry knockoffs if not for the iPhone.

Okay, now that I’ve alienated a good portion of my dwindling readership, I’m going to go have dinner.  Later, taters!

Feel free to throw rocks at me

So I think I’ve pretty much come to terms with the fact that I’m an Apple Fan Girl.  I’m not proud of this.  I didn’t set out to become an Apple Fan Girl.  I was just minding my own business, entering giveaways and that sort of thing (oh hush, you enter giveaways too!  admit it!).  When, BOOM, I won a giveaway for an iPhone.  More specifically: a giftcard to purchase an iPhone.  A dedicated free-upgrade-phone/Windows-PC user, this was pretty much the only way I would get an iPhone.  I waited SO PATIENTLY until my upgrade window came up so I could not only get an iPhone, but an iPod for Kile as well.  Our fist “i” gear!

I’m sure you’ve heard me mention before that we’re rather cheap people.

Anyhow.  The iPhone opened my eyes.  I loved it.  Everything about it.  And when my stupid Dell laptop started giving me fits (which were well-documented here), I dreamt of the day I could replace it with a new MacBook.  And when that day finally arrived, well, it does go down as one of the best days ever.  Along with the day that I got the iPhone.  Cough.

I haven’t looked back nor have I regretted my conversion to Apple products.  The stuff works like it’s supposed to (crazy concept, I KNOW), the company is pleasant to deal with and by now I’m just plain used to it.

My iPhone has been eligible for an upgrade since around April sometime.  But I knew this new iPhone was coming out and was biding my time.  I’m good at waiting.  At least, I was good at waiting until the new iPhone was announced last week.  And then waiting became SO LAST YEAR.  I anticipated today, which is not the day the new iPhone was released, OH NO.  It was the day that you could preorder the new iPhone.  Yep.  I was excited about the day I could spend outrageous amounts of money on a cellphone.

Got those rocks ready to throw yet?

Of course, me and every other Fan Boy in existence was also excited about the preorder.  As a result, Apple and AT&T’s servers both disintegrated and then blew away in the wind.  So yeah.  Getting a preorder was TOUGH STUFF.  In my fervor, I heard of a new Apple Store app you could download that would let you preorder right there.  So I downloaded the app and, sure enough, I was able to get a “reservation” in.  But this reservation just wasn’t good enough.  It wasn’t a preorder, no money changed hands, it kind of like reserving a place in line.  Except there was no guarantee that there’d actually be a phone available after you waited in line.  So, even though I had this reservation,  I kept trying.  And finally I was able to get through to the AT&T site.  I’d pretty much decided at that point to order a phone to be shipped to me.   It would mean I would have to hang around the house all day (and on a day that I actually would otherwise be OUT of the house!), but… small price, yes?

So I ordered the phone from AT&T.  But there was no confirmation email, the money was not debited out of my PayPal account and I could not access the order to view it’s status.  Hmm.  Very troublesome.  Plus, I was starting to hear that maybe AT&T wasn’t the most reliable in preorder stuffs.  I got a little twitchy.  And this is where things get a little obnoxious.  I kept trying.  At apple.com.  Because what I REALLY wanted, as a pre-order phone to be shipped to me through Apple, not AT&T.  Picky much?

But I got my wish and got an order in at Apple.  And not only did it allow me to place an upgrade order (which tells me that AT&T wasn’t registering my order yet), but it also debited my account right away.  AND I got an email acknowledging the order.   Also?  I can log on to the Apple website and check my order status whenever I darn well please.  So yes, I feel better now.  But this does not change the fact that I have essentially THREE iPhones reserved/preordered for June 24th.  The reservation is easy enough to cancel and I am doing that as we speak.  But I can’t do diddly about the AT&T order until they at least ACKNOWLEDGE that I placed the order in the first place.

UGH.

So yeah.  Apple Fan Girl.  I can’t hide from that now!

And YAY… I’m getting an iPhone 4! Squee!

I’m bored. Wanna see my Apps?

It’s no secret that I am in love with my iPhone. When I found out I won this lovely little piece of technology, I was all, “Cool!”  But if I hadn’t won it, I doubt that I would have been interested in putting forth the cash to get one on my own.  I used to be firmly implanted in the “free upgrade” camp.  In fact, when I shelled out $50 of my own money for my Razr, I though that was very excessive.  Of course, now I know better.  People dog the iPhone all the time.  These people do not own iPhones of their own.  They say that they hate AT&T and that’s why they’ll never try it.  I say, the iPhone makes AT&T WORTH IT.  That’s saying something, people.  All those other phones?  Posers.  Wannabes.  Why mess with the best?

*cough*

Anyhow, I thought I’d show you what Apps are rocking my world as of this moment.  Notice: this list of apps is probably subject to change as early as this afternoon.  I’m an App Hoar and I am always downloading new ones.  But for now, this is what I have collected.

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We start on the home screen.  This is supposed to be a default/knitting/app page.  I actually don’t use this page as much as you’d think.  It’s handy for a few things though: The aNote app is the best to-do list/productivity app I’ve found.  I paid for it, but it’s been worth it.  I have been managing my customs list on it and it’s worked great.  That’s probably why it’s in the “knitting app” line.  The knitting apps are… okay.  Probably because these are all free versions.  Maybe the paid versions are great but I haven’t tried those yet.  The Ravelry link is handy when I’m shopping for yarn for a project out and about.  Ravelry needs to have a iPhone app though.  HINT HINT.  The other gmail app doesn’t get used much.  The App apps (snort) are good for feeding my addiction.

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Page 2 and 3 are for my photography apps.  I have more photography apps than is necessary.   But they’re easily my biggest weakness. The ones I use the most are probably the Photobucket app (for yarn and other on the fly photos) and the Flickit app (I like it better for uploading to Flickr than the actual Flickr app).  Photogene and PS Mobile are great editing apps.  The Lego one is fun for entertaining the kiddos. The iVideoCamera is a new one and for $.99 it does a LOT.  Basically makes a person go, “And WHY would I need a 3Gs?” If you don’t have a 3Gs and want to take videos, this is the app to get.  Worth every penny. I love photography apps.

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This is my music page.  Pandora was my favorite for a long, long time until they started putting commercials in.  The big reason I used it over the other radio apps is because I could edit the music it played and it didn’t play commercials.  I would listen to my custom “soothing instrumental music” station while trying to fall asleep at night and the last thing you want is some loud voice busting in on your non-vocal, going-to-sleep music.  And I have no interest in paying the exorbitant membership fee.  So meh.  I’ve been listening to SlackerRadio instead and I love it.  It has commercials too but not as obnoxious and I love the fine tuning they allow you to make on your stations.  Right now I have the best 80’s music station going EVER.  The bottom line here has some “noise maker” apps that I will sometimes listen to while going to sleep as well.  My favorites are storms and ocean waves.  But I’m very picky about both.  The waves have to CRASH and the lightning has to sound relatively real.  I’m weird, I know.

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This is the entertainment page.  Movies, television, general “time wasting” type stuff.  Fairly self explanatory.  When we used Redbox more than we do now (thank YOU streaming Netflix!), the Redbox app was vital. IMDB is great for looking up random movie information which I do quite a bit of. Directv is VITAL for recording movies and shows while out and about.  I use this a LOT.  And I LOVE the Flixter movies app.  I can rate movies, find showtimes, see what’s new on DVD and add to my Netflix queue and take goofy movie quizzes all in one app.

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This is my social media/business/weather page.  I use this page a lot.  Weather Channel is my favorite weather app hands down.  USPS is great for tracking packages (something I’m obsessed with).  Paypal is self explanatory and has actually gotten a lot more useful since a recent upgrade.  Mobile RSS lets me read my Google Reader on the go.  Forums is handy but would be handier if they supported zetaboards. Goodmamas is a link to my favorite forum. Facebook gets used probably the second most on my phone (first is the Mail app).  WordPress… duh.  But I don’t find it that great for blogging.  Maybe in a pinch but I rather use my laptop.

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This is a reading/news/navigation page.  I’m in the middle of “Pride and Prejudice” and it saves my place very nicely.  Otherwise I’d probably delete it in favor of the “Classics” app (which also has P&P).  Bible is handy on the go and I have no need to buy a Kindle due to the free (FREE!) Amazon Kindle app which works great.

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These are my shopping/restaurant pages. Some are more useful than others.  Gowalla and CauseWorld are kinda fun to use when out and about on the weekends.  All of these are handy in their own right.  Yelp was wonderful when trying to find places to have dinner in South Lake Tahoe on our recent vacation.

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This page is… basically leftovers.  Searches, information, recipes, utilities… the Air Sharing gets used the most here since that stores my pdf pattern files.  Which is great for checking a pattern when away from home (I don’t print out patterns, but keep them on my computer).

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The last page is the games.  These really don’t get used all that often as I’m not a big “game on my iPhone” sort of person.  CivRev is probably my favorite, but I think it is in need of some updates.  Then again, maybe they HAVE updated it and I haven’t opened it in a while to see.  Hmm.

So that’s my iPhone.  Do you have an iPhone?  If so, share your favorites.  What Apps out there do I NEED to have?

Wherever you go, there you are

First, a clarification on my “Tough Job” post.  There were a few comments that said, “Hey, I get all happy and bake cookies sometimes!”  So yeah, I didn’t mean to cast dispersions on cookie baking.  We all do that from time to time.  Yes, even ME.  There are days that you feel all warm and snugly and content and domestic.  For sure!  No way would any of us stick with this if we didn’t, right?  What I was talking about were the people who pretend like they never have a negative thought about being a stay at home mom (perish the thought and a pox upon you for feeling that way!).  These are the ones who, regardless if they honestly feel that way all the time or not, make those of us who definitely do NOT feel that way all the time like a pile of crap.  And it’s not to say that they want to make other mom’s feel like a pile of crap.  That could be the furthest thing from their minds.   As for those who DO want to make other moms feel like a pile of crap?  There’s a special spot in Hell for them.

Basically the way I feel is: staying at home with children is back breaking, soul crushing, mind numbing work.  There is no vacation, no break, no weekend and no sick days.  There’s just more of the same, day in and day out.  And all the trays of cookies in the world couldn’t change that.  We all look for the positive in things because we have to.  We don’t dwell on the awfulness because if we did, we’d go crazy.  But it’s there.  It’s always there.

Of course, warm hugs from snuggly children sure help too.

It’s also quite possible that people who are overly perky all the time make me want to slam my head in the door.   You know that old saying where if you don’t have anything nice to say, you best say nothing at all?  I think the opposite can be true.  If all you want to do is spout happiness and unicorns, then maybe just try to limit it a touch for those of us who didn’t get our daily rationing of coffee that morning.

Just sayin’.

In other news: I’m watching “Cars” for perhaps the 38th time this month.  It makes Liam mellow, which this morning was a neccesity.  He was starting to go thermonuclear.  I just want to pause for a moment and praise the dudes at Pixar for making visual crack for our children that DOESN’T make my brain bleed.

And in other, other news: Facebook is freakin’ addictive.  And I don’t even play games on there because most of the games are lame-o.  Yes, even that game that you love.  TRUST ME.  But I am addicted (just a little bit) to some of the quizzes and such.  And I love checking my friends’ and family’s statuses.  Facebook is FUN.  It is also a TIME SUCK.

In other, other, other news:  I love my iPhone.  I know you’re all sick to death of hearing me say that but I just saw those of you out there in the audience who have one too nod your heads knowingly.  It is quite simply the best thing I’ve ever owned.  I am forever amazed and thrilled with all the things it can do.  There’s a lot of stuff in my life that I would give up before I ever gave up my iPhone.

Okay.  I think I’m done.  With all that off my chest now, I’m going to share a cute little video of my girl discovering just how bouncy the couch is when it is removed of it’s cushions.

I shouldn’t be allowed to post from my iPhone

You know, this isn’t the first time that I’ve gone back to read something I posted from my iPhone and gone, “WTF??”  Because really.   That post makes it all seem very sturm and drang and BLAH BLAH BLAH, boring and STUPID!  I think my eyes rolled reading my own post so I can only imagine how the two of you out there who are reading this reacted.

For that?  I apologize.

Yes, last week was very had.  Yes, I had a lot of crabbyness.  Yes, I let my feelings get hurt over stupid stuff that isn’t supposed to hurt my feelings.  Yes, there are times I want to high-tail it to the border just so I can have a break.  But holy cow, doesn’t everyone?  I hardly think I’m unique in that respect.  So please know that the pity party thrown in my post last night wasn’t QUITE as dramatic and pitiful as it came across.

I may be a loser, but even I have standards.

I honestly think maybe it’s the teeny screen of the iPhone that you have to type out a blog post on that makes all the stuff I post from there come out all weird and un-evenly toned.  Yep.  That’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it.

Thankfully, I don’t think the heat will get the better of me this week (yes, I do think that the heat contributed to 90% of my crabbiness… y’all need to believe me when I say I HATE THE HEAT).  Kile put our window a/c unit in the living room today and I’m currently enjoying some machine-generated coolness and am loving it more than I can express in words.

It’s not ALL bad.  Yes, I am mildly depressed.  I’m pretty much used to it by now and I think most of you are used to it too (you know, all two of you).  But like I said, BIG DEAL.  Who cares?  I don’t care.  You don’t care.  NO ONE cares.  Moving on…

It’s Sunday!  And I had a fabulous breakfast at Mimi’s Cafe this morning that may have made my toes curl.  And Evie almost choked on a honeydew melon!  It was good times, all around. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go decide whether or not I need to have something to eat right now.  This is going to require a lot of thought.

Ready to start A picture from the drive-in.  Just cuz I can.

Napping A napping girl.  Cuz she’s cute.

iPhone, youPhone

Do you have an iPhone yet?  Why not?  You’ve seen me prattle on about mine ever since I got it back at the end of the summer/beginning of the fall.  Surely my gushing has led you to purchase your own, right?

Actually, the iPhone is one of those things that you almost have to experience for yourself to fully appreciate.  This could be why the Apple Stores have about a bazillion on display in their store for you to fiddle with to your heart’s content.  Best Buy has one or two as well, last time I checked.  There’s a reason for this, people.  Once you play with an iPhone, a spell is cast.  It’s only a matter of time until you have on of your very own in your pocket to love and cherish.

Of course, I’m probably just making all that up since I got mine because I WON IT (god, that was awesome) and had I needed to actually pay for one, I may have been far more reluctant to try it out.

Anyhow.

That’s all beside the point because what I want to talk about today is “iPhone Applications”.  Anyone who has an iPhone knows about these applications and all the wonderous and magical things they can do.  Shoot, even if you don’t have an iPhone chances are you’ve seen one of those commercials where they pimp a particular application like the racing game where you just tilt the whole phone to steer or you shake the phone to find out where to eat lunch or somesuch silliness. The point here is: iPhone Applications are Awesome.  And you want to know which applications I cannot function on a daily basis without, right?  Right.

Well, since you asked so nicely, I’ll tell you.

  • Air Sharing – I got on in on this one when it was new and free and I think you have to pay for it now.  It lets you upload files to your iPhone that you might not normally be able to store on the iPhone (such as text files, pdfs, etc and so forth).  This is useful to me because a lot of my knitting patterns are pdf files and when I’m on the road, it’s nice to be able to cue up the pattern on my phone to see what the next step is rather than having to either a) memorize which I suck at or b) print it out which uses a lot of evil paper.
  • Easy Relax - a sound generator that spits out soothing sounds for you to play while you’re trying to fall asleep.  I have several of these, including White Noise AND White Noise Storm.  I like the beach sounds on Easy Relax though so I tend to use that every night when falling asleep.  Though I just got the word on aSleep today from Sarah at The Anvil Tree and I rather like the beach noises on that one so I think it may be my new favorite.  Anyhow.  Gotta have a sound generator.  I’m addicted to these frigging things.
  • Facebook - I swear, I use the Facebook application more than I use the actual Facebook webpage.  There are a few things I wish the app did (such as allow access to the games), but for the most part?  Handy as hell.  Love it.
  • Evernote - a versatile notepad application that lets you not just enter in text notes but audio and picture notes too.  You might not believe how handy this is.  I use the text note to keep track of what diapers I currently own.  I know, but it really helps to have it written down so I don’t let myself get nuts with the diapers, yo.
  • StitchMinder - This is what it says.  It is a stitch counter.  Handy for casting on or keeping track of how many rows I have done/need to do, etc.  There’s also a handy KnitGauge application but I’m far too lazy a knitter to actually knit a guage swatch. Shyeah.  Right.
  • The Weather Channel - My favorite weather application (I have three because I’m thorough like that).  I love the hourly weather info, the 3 day forcast, the week long forcast and the radar.  Very nice.  I refer to this often, and many times in the middle of the night when we’re having a wind storm to see WHEN the heck they expect it to stop blowing so damn hard out there.  Then I turn on my beach sounds extra loud to drown it out.
  • Movie Star – a decieving name for this application.  What it is is basically IMDB on your iPhone.  If you’re an OCD IMDB looker-upper like me, then this is handy to have so you can access movie information on the fly.  Trust me, this gets used more than you would think.
  • Kindle – It’s basically an Amazon Kindle for your phone.  I haven’t really had the chance to use it yet as I have no Kindle books but I love that it means I won’t need to buy a whole Kindle for $300 or whatever it costs.  Cuz it’s free.  Bonus!
  • WordPress - I love this application but it could be a LOT better.  There isn’t much support for anything terribly fancy and there are some features that I would sorely like to see integrated and it hasn’t been updated in like FOREVER.  But whatever. I use it a lot when I need to post from my phone.  I just wish they would allow landscape typing because that would be a lot nicer.
  • Flickit - If you need a Flickr application (and who doesn’t, really?), this is the one you want.  I have tried many.  Believe me.  This not only lets you upload in full resolution (not as common as you might hope), but allows for easy name, descriptions, tags, visibility, set support… you name it.  FOR FREE.  FREE, people.  FREE.
  • PayPal - Handy for checking balances on the go, which I often need to do.  You can also send money though I’d like it if they allowed you to pick if it was a goods or services or whatever transaction.
  • I Can Has Cheezburger – Who doesn’t want access to lolcats on the go?  You also get all the other great lolz, like loldogs, lolpolitics, lolcelebrities, etc and so forth.  Good for a chuckle when you need it the most.

There is at least one application that I would love to see that I haven’t found yet.  And that is a dedicated Google Reader application.  I’m tired of using Safari to read my feeds and it’d be real nice to have an application devoted to my reader.  There are feed reader applications, both free and pay but none that are Google Reader specific (as far as I can tell… correct me if I’m wrong!).  So that’d be nice.

I may have already done one of these “gotta have these applications” posts, but… I don’t care.  I’m too lazy to look it up at the moment and frankly, my needs have changed in the last several months so I’m sure there are many things on this list that wouldn’t have been on a previous one.

So if you have an iPhone… what are your favorite apps?  What can’t you live without?

Rescued from the iPhone

Looking through my Camera Roll on the iPhone the other day, I was surprised by the pictures I had taken but had forgotten about.  Does anyone else do that?  Or is it just my own brain that is slowly (quickly?) turning to mush?  Anyhow, I thought I’d rescue them and do a little photo post.  I love doing photo posts.  I love pictures anyhow and it makes for a an easy and interesting post.  Well.  Interesting to ME, at least.

IMG_0234 Taken on Christmas Eve when we went to dinner at Mimi’s.  Evie’s rocking her headband and bow and the gal at the table behind us STILL freaks me out a month later.

IMG_0251 Evie chills at her 6 month pediatrician appointment.  Girl loves that tissue on the table.  (Am I the only one who wants to nom on her legs?)

IMG_0256 I think this was January 2nd and the last time we had any sort of inclement weather.  SIGH.  I sorta miss it.

IMG_0252 She has a tendancy to sleep with her eyes open.  FREAKS ME OUT.

IMG_0315 You’d think she’d be happier to be hanging out at Whole Foods, wouldn’t you?

IMG_0320 The sun sets over Target.  I love Nevada sunsets.

Work in progress (PixUp) My current work in progress. The colors are a little wonky here (more blue and the waist is dark gray) but am VERY pleased with how these are turning out as I’m using a new and more complicated pattern.

I can knit! (sorta)

Last night, I finished the baby hat I started knitting for Evie last Sunday night.  It’s not perfect, but it’s finished and it works and it fits and I love it so much.  Because I made it.  And if I can make this, maybe there are other things I can make.  

Finished Baby Hat 

There were a couple of… ahem… mistakes made during the knitting process.  Some of them I know how the mistakes were made.  Some of them.. I don’t.  

Finished Baby Hat 

But I guess mistakes are how you learn, right?  Though I’m pretty sure that only applies to mistakes where you know what you did to make the mistakes.  Like, down by the brim, there is some ribbing.  I pretty much know what I did there.  I didn’t realize that stockinette stich is different in when knitting in the round.  But I left the ribs in there because I thought it added some “interest” to the piece.  Whatever. 

A few... ahem... mistakes 

This?  I don’t have a clue.  This was one of the “joins”.  The one on the other side came through pretty okay, but this one is all kinds of fuxed.  And I’m pretty sure I suck at joining purl stitches, though I improved on that towards the top of the hat.  Sorta.  But what the heck is with all the other funkiness there?  I don’t know what happened there, other than plain old fashioned “not paying close attention”.  

Uhm... 

Hrm.  Yeah.  Not sure what happened here either.  This was in that ribbing that I wasn’t technically supposed to be doing anyhow.  But I think I fumbled a stitch or ten here.  

I made this. 

See up there where the hat starts getting smaller?  Those stitches that look all different.  Yeah.  NO IDEA.  I know those are purl stitches but I swear to you with every fiber of my being that I was KNITTING.  Not PURLING.  Somehow, the darned thing got turned around.  So when all my attempts to turn it back around failed, I made a few more rows of it and then purled the rest of the hat.  Why?  So it would look knitted.  Yes, I purled so it would look like knit.  WHATEVER. 

Evie models her new hat 

In the end, it all came out looking fine and almost as though I meant to do it on PURPOSE.  Which is sorta awesome.  I won’t tell anyone if you won’t.  Deal?  

Cute girl in a cute hat 

The important thing is that Evie seems to not notice or care and that’s a good thing.  And it keeps her head warm in our cold-as-Christmas house in the morning.  

So what shall I knit next?? 

My iPhone WallpaperAs a bonus, I’m including a screenshot of my iPhone wallpaper so you’ll all know what a monstrous nerd I am.  But admit it.  Some of you wish you had Edward smiling out at you from your cellphone too, don’t you? 

Travelogue

You didn’t think i would forget to post today, did you?  Not after being conscientious enough to post every single day while we were in Elko using nothing more than my (supa-cool) iPhone?  Of course not!  But I wanted to post some pictures of what your average road trip between Elko and Reno looks like.  And of course I couldn’t just upload pictures STRAIGHT FROM THE iPHONE (because surely it didn’t work this last weekend).  So I had to wait until I got home and then I had to futz with the pictures in Lightroom (which wanted to be updated first).  And we needed dinner.  And now the kids want to go to bed.  So this is actually taking a lot longer than I expected.  Whoops.  Anyhow… here goes.  Be prepared for a lot of BROWN (and water, as it was a rather wet day here in Nevada).

Road Work
When ISN’T there road work going on in Nevada??

Traveling Beetoe
My traveling companion

Nevada Landscape
See? Lots of brown.

Common Sight
And lots of trucks.

Down the hill
Getting closer to Winnemucca

Winnemucca McDonald's
We ALWAYS stop here for a break. ALWAYS.

Raindrops
Lots of little raindrops on the windshield today.

Chilled out
Liam is content with his stuffed animals, sippy cup and cars.

Livestock
Moo!

True Midpoint
This truck stop is almost exactly halfway between Elko and Reno.

Snowy Mountains
Snow!

Ramshackle
This “building” looks more and more rundown each time we travel past it. Someday I’ll imagine it won’t be there anymore.

Truckin'
Once again… lots of trucks

Peeking Sun
This was the first and last time we saw the sun today.

I see the Sierras!
Our first glimpse of the Sierra Mountains since last week.

Reno, at last!
Yay! We can see Reno!

One last stretch
And up the interstate towards home… at last!