4 Free Apps for Privately Sharing Photos

apps for privately sharing photos Many, many articles and essays have been written about the potential dangers of posting photos of your kids on Facebook and other social media. Whether or not you agree (that’s a topic for a whole other post!), there are some great alternatives out there for sharing photos of your children with family and friends. (Psst: We recently did a post on apps that help working moms stay connected to school/daycare, and we’ve also talked about how to organize family photos and make photo projects.) Sure, you can safely use platforms like Instagram, Flickr, and Google Photos to show off pictures of your kids (as long as you adjust the privacy settings carefully), but there are some great apps for privately sharing photos on the market right now — and all of them have a “free” tier for pricing.

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The Best Online Backup Services for Backing Up Family Photos, Unfinished Novels, and More

online backup services for momsThese days, everyone has precious things on our computers: those family photos, that old voicemail from Nana you saved on your computer, the half-finished draft of your novel. Some of it you can save casually in the cloud, sure — but some of it, for sheer size alone, kind of has to live on a hard drive. How do you back up those hard drives? We looked into the best online backup services that keep your stuff safe — and don’t require a ton of effort or money on your part.

If it hasn’t happened to you personally, it’s definitely happened to a friend or family member: Your computer crashes and you lose everything … because you haven’t backed up your files. Backing up data is usually pretty tedious and time-consuming — and it’s so easy to forget to do — but online backup services make the process much easier and hands-off. Today we’re rounding up the 3 best online services for backing up files.

Pictured: The normal time everyone thinks about backing up their computer: when they see the blue screen of death. Credit: Flickr / Blondinrikard Fröberg

By the way, over at Corporette we’ve talked about Evernote and other note-keeping apps, the Morphine plugin for Chrome for limiting distractions, and apps for working women, and here at CorporetteMoms we’ve talked about how to organize family photos and make photo projects.

Here, we compare the popular and highly-rated online backup services Crashplan, Backblaze, and IDrive: 

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Which Are Your Child’s Favorite Books — And How Do You Find Them?

photographing your kids favorite booksIf you’re like me, I’m guessing books were huge to you growing up — I proudly considered myself a bookworm for years. (I’m trying to get back to it, but I read more articles than books at this point in my life!) For my boys, I’ve always tried to encourage reading, sometimes by adding in some bonuses like knee-bumps, sometimes by reading them the same book three times in a row, etc. So let’s discuss, ladies — which are your favorite books — and for what ages? (And, how do you find new ones — do you have any lists that you swear by? I often will Google “best books for 2-year-old boy” or some such, but finding Amazon’s list of bestseller kids’ books isn’t always helpful.)

A weird thing I’ve done that I kind of cherish now is take pictures of their favorite books, maybe every nine months or so. It’s a wonderful little snapshot of their favorites at that point in time, and I love all the memories that come flooding back to me, like J declaring every food he liked to be “disgustingly delicious!” just like Oscar the Grouch does in Elmo’s Delicious Christmas, or the cute way he would wave at the arriving ship captain in Eric Carle’s 10 Little Rubber Ducks.

Now that H is around, it’s also fun to compare their reading material. J was obsessed with construction vehicles from a young age, but H seems to like animals more. (H is doing this adorable thing right now where he kisses any sleeping animal or kid in our bedtime books. At least, I thought he was kissing them — turns out he’s licking the page. #ProudMama?) I’ve included some of the pictures I could find below, with links to the books that are still in print (a lot of their favorites are surprisingly from my childhood (and my brother’s) in the late ’70s and early ’80s). Even though it feels like a pretty good snapshot, it’s funny how some books that had a long run aren’t represented — I swear I read Hop on Pop a thousand and two times to J, and both boys went through an obsession with The Robot Book (you have to get the one with the twirly things — ISBN 0740797255), as well as the In My Tree series of puppet-books. J also went through a long era where he was obsessed with Sam the Firehouse Cat (an old book from my childhood, in which Sam saves the neighbor cat Becky from a fire, and then they get married and have babies right away!) and the newer book Pickles the Firehouse Cat.

I do have some hesitations about reading the boys older books sometimes — I saw this interesting comparison of how Richard Scarry has updated some of his books to reflect Mommy and Daddy both doing housework, and things like that — but I also feel free to skip over parts of the books, or “lose books” entirely that raise eyebrows. I don’t get too upset about books that still say “fireman” rather than firefighter, or things like that, but maybe I should police that more. There’s at least one Richard Scarry book with a hippo for a judge whom I purposely refer to with feminine pronouns.

We get a lot of kids’ books from the library (I love ordering them online and then picking them up — quick and easy!), but when people gift us books I try to ask them to inscribe the books, at least with their name/date.

If you’re curious, here are some of the pictures I’ve taken over the years:

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How to Organize Family Photos — and Make Photo Projects

How to Organize Family Photos

2018 Update: We still stand by this advice on how to organize family photos; you may also want to check out our newer discussion on the best apps for privately sharing photos. Over on Corporette, Kat’s shared her best tips for how to get started with digital photo books.

I don’t know about you guys, but I have been overwhelmed by the number of photos we take of the boys. So many good family photos!(Part of the problem: I text the grandparents a “picture of the day” of each of the boys.) Over the years I’ve developed my own system for dealing with all of them, but I’m curious to hear what everyone else does, because my system is definitely a bit labor intensive… How do you organize family photos? What are your best tips for organizing family photos and “processing” them into projects?


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