iPhone Love: My New Toy and Other Things I’m Loving

I pride myself on being thrifty, and as a full-time blogger I am embarrassingly low-tech. Just to give you a sampling of how low-tech we truly are:

  • We don’t have cable television.
  • We own one television that is sporting a big backside and bunny ears.
  • We don’t have a blue-ray player.
  • We have one portable DVD player that we connect to said bunny-eared television.
  • We don’t even have Netflix.
  • We don’t own any gaming devices.
  • We don’t have a stereo
  • We don’t have a cell phone plan

Up until last week our cell phones were pay-as-you-go, T-Mobile phones from the year 2003. Below is a picture of the old relic. Yes, it still works but not all that well.After traveling for several weeks and being completely at the mercy of everyone else for all of my communication needs, I decided enough was enough. I came home and purchased two iphones. A 4S for myself and a 4 for the hubs. My credit card company, knowing me all too well, wouldn’t allow the transaction to go through and actually called me to ask if my card had been stolen…or if I had gone temporarily insane. I told them that it was the later :).

So now I have officially joined this century, and I have to admit that I am LOVING it! Who knew it was so bright and shiny and convenient in this era? Yes, yes…..you did. Okay, so here are some of the apps I’ve downloaded and played around with so far:

iphone appsiphone app

In my defense, the two games somehow jumped on here when I sunk my phone. They were in my itunes from my kids’ 1st generation itouch and are now uploaded onto my phone.

As you can see, I have a lot of camera apps because I’m addicted to taking pictures. I adore my Nikon but it’s not super practical for taking pictures of the cute pillow on sale at Target, or of my entree at a restaurant, or of the paint I’m using for a project—you know, all the weird things we as bloggers take pictures of everyday! The camera is definitely my favorite aspect of my phone. Granted most of my pictures so far have looked something like this:

pomeranian picture

So what apps am I missing that are must haves?

I was told to get an Otterbox Defender case for my phone, but I was feeling truly reckless and instead went with this adorable case from Joss & Main. Perhaps I’ll be crying over this decision when my phone shatters into a million pieces but for now pretty is winning over practical!

Source: jossandmain.com via Beth on Pinterest


And this is completely unrelated to my new love but might help out some of you procrastinators. I bought two of these Groupon deals today for Mother’s Day. It’s $20 for $40 worth of FTD flowers which I thought was pretty decent. Just be aware that they add $15 for shipping and handling so take that into account when you choose your flowers.

So what are you loving right now?

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  1. Emily says

    Everybody I know has a smart phone. Except for me that is…I have phone that slides where as everyone I know, including my own mother has a touch phone! But I always say ‘what ain’t broke, don’t fix it’.

    • Beth @A to Z says

      I hear ya girl. My old phone wasn’t even cool enough to flip or slide or anything and it still worked in an emergency :). But after experiencing the dark-side I’m admittedly hooked.

  2. Beth M. says

    Get the Otter cover! I went with cute and stylish and when my phone and the driveway got in a fight, the driveway won! It shattered into a million pieces!

  3. says

    I just got an iphone only because I had gone through all of my husband’s old business cell phones and had killed them all. I wish we didn’t have cable. And we only have one TV. I LOVE cheap people. They are so cool. Have fun with your new toys!

  4. says

    You sound just like our family! We finally did upgrade our TV this year, but still only have 1, and are on the pay as you go cell phone plan. My friends hate it that I don’t text. I’m thinking we may just be ready to join the new millinium…maybe.

  5. says

    I have an otterbox commuter case and it is MUCH slimmer and cuter than the bulky ones. And it does it’s job! I don’t know how many times I have dropped my phone on various surfaces and it is still in one piece and working fine! So check out the commuter series….I think you’ll like them much better!

  6. says

    Ah! How refreshing to hear, Beth! I am so ridiculously cheap….it’s almost a sickness. I also have a prehistoric phone and have been stomping my feet against getting an iphone for years now. I am starting to realize I have stomped too hard and should just join the movement…of course this realization didn’t happen until my phone got osteoporosis last month. :)

    • Beth @A to Z says

      LOL! Yes, my phone definitely had some geriatric issues going on. Honestly if I wasn’t a full-time blogger I would probably have kept using it for a few more years. But after this last conference it was obvious that a good phone (with a decent enough camera) would be a beautiful thing!

      • says

        Yes, the camera is the MAIN reason behind my new ‘mindset’! My current phone has a camera, but….well, okay, I’ll just out myself…I use a disposable camera and hold it up to my ear to fool onlookers. Lol. Kidding. But hey, congrats on joining the electronic era! I hope to join ya’ll soon!! :)

  7. kelly says

    i never thought i needed an iphone until i had one now could not live without it! i just have a hard plastic kate spade cover and have dropped my phone at least 5 times, the case has taken a little damage but not the phone at all. i would never go without a case though and the screen protector is a must too. my son and soninlaw work construction and i make them have otterboxes since i pay for the plan but that’s hard core dropping!

    • Beth @A to Z says

      I bought my husband an otterbox because he’s a tad clumsy and I did my the “extra protective” case for my phone. It hasn’t arrived yet so I’m not sure if it’s sufficient.

  8. kelly says

    oh and there are cute otterbox covers, i think it’s very jane that has them right now but look on etsy.

  9. says

    Lipstick Shades makes monogrammed Otterbox cases–I think in both the Defender and Commuter styles. I refused to get an Otterbox for forever, but a rowdy 16 month old + 2 broken iPhones in one month made me break down and do it–and I’m so glad I did! I love it!

    • Beth @A to Z says

      Oh cute! The ones by Lipstick Shades are pricey but so much cuter than the ones I originally saw.

  10. says

    Looove this — I’ve had my iPhone for a week now so I was happy to read your story and know I’m not alone! Before I had a 2003 flip phone, hollaaa! 😉 Scramble with friends is my guilty pleasure… hootsuite, vlingo (voice app for your phone), GPS Drive, Key Ring (scan all your reward cards) and Flashlight… all super duper important apps in my world 😉

  11. Beth McHale says

    I highly recommend the iPeriod app! That’s a for me. A couple fun ones for kiddos are Stack the States, SkyView & Rocket Math. I like them cause they’re a bit more on the educational side, but still fun to play.
    Just keep in mind…sometimes fashion is more important than function! I’ve had “cute” cases for 3 years and never had a problem (& I’m a bit clumsy).

    • Beth @A to Z says

      iPeriod? How funny and clever :)! I always know when mine is coming on because everything and everyone annoys me. LOL! I have the stack the states for my kiddos on their itouch but it won’t allow the others since it’s a 1st generation. I’m not letting them play with my phone :).

  12. says

    Welcome to the iphone love! I fell in love with the iphone in December! It’s amazing, isn’t it. My question is . . . how do you upload the photos from all those great apps to your blog. What is the easiest way? I use Instgram a lot and would love to post some of my pics but am unsure what’s easiest — do you email them to yourself and then store them to your computer and upload them? That seems like a lot of work!!! I must be missing an easier way! Thanks in advance and have fun with your iphone!

    • Beth @A to Z says

      Girl, I’ve had my phone for 1 week and you’re asking me? LOL! But yes, so far I’ve just sunk my photos to iphoto and then uploaded them to the blog. I’m guessing that you could open your blog on your phone and then upload your instagram pics from your “photos” file on your phone.

  13. says

    Quite honestly, my iPhone(s) have become my left hand. I use it constantly, and I mean CONSTANTLY. It’s a sickness. I use it to blog, photograph, upload, download, program, tweet, pretty much everything. As such, I think I have a few good and mostly free apps that I tend to put right onto all of my friends’ new phones. This occurs because I’m a techno zealot and completely obsessed. Here you go:

    Remember The Milk (great task list)
    Redfin – Real estate and house daydreaming (limited areas)
    Zillow – Again, house daydreaming
    Remote – remote controlling iTunes
    Weatherbug or The Weather Channel
    OpenTable (I love it on vacations when looking for a good place to eat)
    Bump (syncing and sending contact info by bumping)
    Shazam (listens to music and tells you what’s playing)
    RedLaser (QR/Bar Code scanner)
    OneReceipt (receipt organization)
    Google Translate
    Amazon (built in bar code scanner for price research)

    For your website/tech troubleshooting
    Ping Lite

    And if you use Gmail, get the Gmail App, I actually like it better then the normal mail app.

    There you have it. That’s my top list of apps, and probably only about 1/4 of the apps I have on my phone.

    I hope you enjoy your phone. I feel so lame when I say it, but my phone has actually been a life changing device. I say this because it has effectively changed the way I research on a daily basis. I can be more efficient and do better research, and that results in money savings. I know the iPhone can seem expensive, but you can make it work for you to promote savings to the point where it will easily pay for itself.

  14. Kathy :) says

    Oh Beth I am so happy for you….I adore my iPhone, I still have the 3g, know I should update but I just love this thing……we’ll see.

    I love Shazam, so fun…..Better Homes must have recipes, flixster,amazon price check, yelp, all free….

    One more I just downloaded emoji….let’s you add all sorts of cute little smiles, hearts….etc….

    Beat the traffic is another goodie….and of course Words with Friends…..

    All the best,
    Kathy :)

  15. Danielle says

    Even with the groupon, it is always cheaper to call your local florist directly. Internet floral companies take out fees for processing and your local florist fills the order anyway.

  16. Rebecca says

    My current favorite Iphone Apps:
    1. Postagram – Send a postcard from your Iphone of your Instagram.
    3.Micheal’s – Coupons!
    4.Scatterbrain – Nifty way to collect my thoughts

    Have fun!

  17. shelley says

    beth, I just got on the iPhone bandwagon
    as well and love it!
    let me know your instagram username!
    mine is shelleyshelley.

  18. robyn says

    I LOVE my iphone just joined the iphone family in Dec.
    Some of my favorite apps
    Alarm Clock by ihandy it also has a flashlight if you shake it great for travel, bathroom trips etc.
    Key Ring no more carrying all those tags on your keys
    Starbucks love to pay for my coffee off my phone
    Five Guys love to order from my phone and it is ready when I arrive!
    Pay Pal
    Seafood Watch
    Draw Some….love this
    Label Box
    Guess those are my faves and I’m in the over 50 crowd so not too many games! LOL

  19. Kim B. says

    Hi Beth! Check out appsmitten.com it basically categorizes all the apps for you :) My FAVORITE app is GasBuddy as it tells me where to get the CHEAPEST gas nearest where I’m at. I have saved TONS using this app as gas can fluctuate anywhere from 5-10 cents a gallon in my area! I also like First Aid as we mom of boys never know when an injury or accident will occur :) Craigslist is good too! It was a nice surprise seeing you on Instagram!!

  20. Christine C. says

    Hi Beth, On Sunday my husband & I just upgraded our old iPhone 3Gs to the new 4s. I knew the time was coming so I started looking online for a cute case. (because that’s what girls do) I saw the same cell phone case as you at Joss & Main and only put it in my shopping basket. But of course, the salesman warned me about leaving the store without a case. It’s not as cute as the other case, but this one will do (same price). Good luck & enjoy!

  21. says

    We broke down and upgraded to the Iphone 4s a couple of months ago, and it’s an addictive device. I already feel we spend too much time on our phones. But I love the camera! I am constantly taking pics (sometimes with Instagram)!
    My must have apps are:
    Overdrive- I can get free audiobooks from my library downloaded straight to my Iphone without having to log onto my computer and then transfer to my device.
    FIND MY IPHONE- Everyone should have this app on their Iphone. You can remote lock and locate your phone with this app.
    Keyring- No more store rewards card. I scan them into this app, and just show my phone at the register.
    Mapquest- The gps navigation that comes with the Iphone does not have turn by turn voice. Mapquest does.

    And here are some tips:
    Double tap your home button to show you all the apps running in the background. Press and hold to close these apps.
    I have friends who have their Iphones for over a year and didn’t know this and they were complaining about the terrible battery life on their phone! Every app they had ever open was running in the background!

    Scroll to the top of a webpage by touching the battery button at the top of your screen.

    To extend battery life:
    Turn off the wireless and bluetooth if you are not using them.
    Close background apps.
    Turn off location and notification services of apps you don’t use often.

  22. says

    Oh, and I have an Otterbox Defender case in the Pink/Plum. Bulky it is, but I am clutz and I will destroy my phone otherwise.
    You know what sold me on the Otterbox? My uncle took showed me his and then proceeded to throw it 30 feet down his concrete driveway. Not a scratch on it.

  23. Wanda Styrsky says

    Welcome to the 21st century!!!!! Next up, you need an iPad. I haven’t turned on my PC in a looooooong time.

    Btw…. I believe it is “synced” , not sunk!

  24. Cindy says

    I’m glad to know that I am not the only person reluctant to join the 21st century! LOL I was carrying around an ancient phone that only made phone calls, no texting. I finally got the iPhone 4s almost a month ago and wonder how I ever lived without it! A few of my favorite apps that haven’t already been mentioned are Yelp, MindSnacks language learning games, iHandy Level, nook (I’m thinking the new phone kind of makes my ereader obsolete), lonely planet, and MyFitnessPal.

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