Find Safe, Healthy and Socially Responsible Products with Good Guide

Screen Shot 2016-04-26 at 8.23.48 AMThis app was promoted on our latest Earth Day. I learned about it then, and downloaded it immediately.

I’m delighted!

With a massive database of over 210,000 products, this app rates them on a scale of 1 to 10 on health, environmental and social impact.

You can search for a product or you can browse through categories such as pet products, oral care, food, household cleaners and more. I especially like seeing the ingredients listed with ratings on EACH ingredient about its safety (or not). You can even scan the barcode of a product while you are shopping.

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I searched for several products that I use regularly and was surprised to see a very low rating for one in particular that I use all the time (oh my ….. a change will happen.:) ).

This app has been featured in the NY Times, USA Today, TIME, Oprah, InStyle, Newsweek, TechCrunch, ABC, CBS, and more. Truly a valuable resource at your fingertips.

Good Guide is FREE in the iTunes store.

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Amazon releases the Newest Kindle: Oasis

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This morning Amazon went “live” with it’s newest Kindle, available now to pre-order.

Improvements seem to be mostly the hardware: It’s thinner and lighter. It’s shaped differently, giving you a wider side on one edge to hold it. It comes WITH a cover, and that cover acts as an additional charging source for the Kindle, giving it the battery power of months (yes…months).

It’s pricey, and so it will be interesting to see if this model flies off the shelves ….

I’ve been reading on the Kindle Voyage, and it hasn’t been my happiest experience. The improvements on the new Oasis seem to have addressed the shortcomings of the Voyage. The price tag gives me pause, but I’m such a new-tech-stuff nerd ………. I just might……. (and if I do, I’ll be sure to let you know.:) )

Reviews are coming out, and they are looking good.

This short video, made by my favorite Kindle podcaster, Len Edgerly, examines the new Oasis.

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Use the “Near” Feature on Google Maps to Find What you Want

Screen Shot 2016-04-02 at 6.05.37 PMNot a day goes by that I don’t click on Google Maps. I use it ALL the time.

I use it for directions, of course, and daily for traffic. I use it to look for shortcuts, and I use it for street view so that I can recognize my destination when I get there.

Another great feature of Google Maps is the “near” feature. I was not very familiar with it, but now that I’m using it …… well, it’s simply invaluable.

Let’s say you are standing in Manhattan, near the Empire State Building. You want to visit a book store, but you have no clue of the name of any local book store let alone where one might be.

Google maps to the rescue.

Simply search for “book stores near (your location)” In this example case, I searched for “book stores near the Empire State Building” and the map below shows the result of that search. A bunch of book stores to explore!

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This is obviously a great feature to have when you’re away from home, but lately I find myself using this trick at home, too, to discover unknown-to-me restaurants and other places.

Just search using your own address (or “me” if Google maps knows your home address):
“Mexican restaurants near me,” for example, and, poof! All kinds of new places to explore.:)

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Weekend Distraction: Bonza: An Addictive Word Game

Screen Shot 2016-03-19 at 6.00.18 PM Bonza is a word puzzle game that’s a bit hard to describe.

The finished puzzle looks like a crossword puzzle, but that’s not how it starts.

You are presented with assorted pieces of the puzzle and it is up to you to slide those pieces around until you make the words that match the theme.

This quick video will show you clearly what I struggle to explain.

Once you download this app, you will get a set of ‘starter’ puzzles to complete. After that, if you want more, you’ll have to buy packs.

** OR **

you can return to the app each day and find a new puzzle …. for free. This is the one-free-puzzle a day model that is also used in the Daily Crossword. I like this. One a day is enough for my rather short ‘game-attention’ span.

Bonza works on your iPhone or iPad and is free in the iTunes store. (I downloaded this a while ago and paid 99¢ for it. As I write this blog post, it appears to be free.)

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How to See All the Photos You’ve Sent via Text

Screen Shot 2016-03-02 at 10.09.57 AM Text picture sending is something we all do. A lot.

It’s so easy to send a text photo that today most people share not only the extraordinary moments of their lives, but also the most ordinary everyday stuff. (Food pics? We’ve all done it.:) )

I was astonished to learn that you can SEE all the pics you’ve sent to an individual without scrolling back through eternity.

Just open a text thread, and take a look at the TOP, next to the person’s name.

See the word “details”? Tap on that. Poof!!!

A collage of photos, both sent and received!

From Skitch

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Wow and Thank you!

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This blog has officially been visited over 500,000 times. My goodness! That’s a LOT!

And it is with the deepest gratitude that I say thank you to each and every one of you.

I jumped into the blogosphere with blinders on. I did not know what to expect or even how it “worked”.

But now, looking back, I can say sincerely that my life has been deeply enriched by the friends I’ve made here…… blogging friends who live all over the world. Some I’ve happily had the opportunity to meet in ‘real life’ and others I plan to meet someday.

What a wonderful experience this is, and thank you, THANK YOU, for sharing it with me.

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How to Answer a Text without Unlocking your iPhone

Screen Shot 2016-02-23 at 7.47.47 AMThanks to my sweet daughter-in-law for bringing this tip to my attention. It’s a way to answer a text WITHOUT unlocking your phone.

This could be very handy.
In spite of fingerprint-recognition, I find myself tap tap tapping my lock code many times each day, usually just to answer a text message. This little hint shows us a way to answer without the unlock.

However...… old habits are hard to break. I think it’s going to take some conscious effort for me to make this change. The first few times I’ve done this, it has actually slowed me down:) . I guess time will tell if I adopt this method, or continue on tap tapping my code.

How to answer a text without unlocking your iPhone: (iOS8 and up)

When the text comes in on your locked iPhone, it appears like this:

From Skitch

Put your finger on the text and slide the text to the LEFT ……

From Skitch copy

Tap reply and type your message.

From Skitch copy 2

Old habits are hard to break. But it’s always fun to learn something new.

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