Monday, September 12, 2011

Organized Mom

Free online shared calendar to manage activities and get the family organized.

I used to be the 'paper only' organizer type and had my super cool Day Planner to plan my activities, social functions, holidays, and work related appointments as a play therapist.

But then I had a child.  And quit my job to stay home with her.  So, carting around a Day Planner in the diaper bag? Just not going to happen.  So I did what I never thought I would do, and started using an electronic calendar to organize my life- aka, my iPhone Calendar.

I quickly learned that you can't be at a park play date when a mom asks you if you are free next week, and whip out your big paper calendar. Just not going to happen. Or at the Pediatrician's office as they try to book your next appointment: "Uhm, let me set my baby down, and then awkwardly fish out my big book planner out of my already crammed diaper bag."  So much easier to pull out your phone and check your iCalendar.

BUT, even though I have gone high tech now, I was still feeling so disorganized as a mom.

Why you ask? Well, if you are anything like me, you have play dates to plan, doctor appointments, Mom Night's Out, Gym Classes (for me that is Hip Hop class), family functions, in-law visits, trips to visit family, a new mom support/social group I joined called MOPS, La Leche meetings, my Early Childhood PTA meetings and functions, birthday parties, social functions (like Longhorn College Football parties), etc..the list goes on and on.

I always feel like I have something going on but also the biggest problem was my husband needing to know what was going on. Hence the great Container Store magnet calendar I bought for our fridge. Which is great but was not helping us when he was away from the house.

But then, I stumbled upon greatness! Cozi.....

After talking to a few moms at a La Leche Meeting recently, they told me about Cozi.  It's a website that's FREE and their application on your iPhone/Smartphone is free too!  (FYI, I was NOT paid at all to endorse this, I wish!  It's just a really cool website I found and wanted to share my new found joy!) The site offers a calendar that you can access anywhere, as well as a To-Do list and Shopping lists.

I researched a few other home planner websites like Jibidee, Homelife and Plumlife but Cozi was the most user-friendly and had the best functions.

How does it work?

-The whole family can access the calendar from their own computers, phones or other mobile devices.

-You can assign each family member a color for their own appointments on the calendar and you can display the calendar as a week, day or month view.

-Receive appointment reminders by text or email.  This is super cool, so you can remind your husband of upcoming appts.

-Use the free App on your smartphone, so you and your family members can access it at any time.

-It has To-Do lists, that are shared or individual and you can send reminders to each member.

- You can also import existing Internet calendars, including personal iCals (Google or Yahoo calendar), or public iCals (sports or school calendars).

Online calendar to manage family activities and get organized.

I am so excited to start using this site. Has anyone else used this or found another great way to get organized?  (Again, I was NOT paid at all to endorse this-  It's just a really cool website I found and wanted to share my new found joy!)  Let me know if you start using this and how you like it!