Get Organized and More Productive with Apps

So I’ve recently become even more addicted to my iPhone (if that’s even physically possible) and it’s array of apps that just happen to make my life so much easier and more organized! Which is just what this article is going to focus on, getting organized and raising your productivity by using the little gadget that most of us love so much. So so much. I know you’ve been wanting me to publish this one for awhile because of the many times you ask me how I appear to stay on task in the midst of chaos and since I gave you my daily staples for happiness I figured next up should be my staples for productivity and organization. Together we’re going to excel in 2013 like never before! Do you feel me?

Some of the most important applications I need to include in my work days (and weekends as well) are simple and easily locatable in the App Store BUT being an Apple fan I’m going to assume that you, much like myself, prefer the finer things in life. The well designed, well written and most useful of the group no matter the cost. So my basic must haves for any day are: brain wave hacks or meditation music, a journal or scrapbook, a gratitude journal, a mood journal, a calendar, a task list, a notebook, a sketchbook, a daily schedule planner and obviously a camera which comes standard in all iPhones. Enjoy my list of top dogs I’ve carefully selected after using many other sub-par creations.

Audio: BrainHack 2.0 and Spotify
Audio and music are probably not important to everyone but they are must-haves for me. Whether I’m stressed and need to calm myself or get inspired a bit with a brainhack or if I just need some relaxing tunes to meditate to audio is a staple to my every day. Plus if you’re all about increasing productivity even in down time you can learn some new things as you commute by subscribing to some awesome Podcasts and radio programs.

A Journal: Evernote and Evernote Food
Everyone needs their go-to journal that’s easily accessible anytime they need to write what they’re feeling or any number of other things. The good thing about Evernote, the journal application I prefer, is that you can access, create and edit all of your notes on your computer, your iPad, your iPhone and even your Kindle or other android device. Evernote has also created a few other useful apps such as Evernote Food that is useful for organizing recipes, favorite dishes and restaurants you enjoy most and we all know how important food is to productivity and to having an enjoyable day! With Evernote, which happens to also be very clean and nice to look at, you can create as many notebooks as you like, attach photos, visually format your notes and attach locations as well. It’s very simple to use and you’ll only continue to think of new ways to use it. I adore it.

Gratitude Journal: Gratitude Journal by Happy Tapper
Very important to those of us who want to become happier and more aware of the good things we have in our life. In practicing gratitude daily you learn to be more thankful for the gifts you have been given and to overlook the problems you may be going through. With this app you also get a daily inspiring quote, you can rate your days, format your entries and attach a picture. This was one of my first favorite apps and I’ve been enjoying it for a long time!

Mood Journal: iMoodJournal
I originally decided to find a mood journal when my boyfriend asked if I had one. We figured, as any therapist will tell you, by recording your moods you’ll become more aware of bad mood triggers and will be able to track how your moods change throughout the day, week, month and year. This app allows you to rate your day, add as many notes and tags as you like and to attach a picture of your face. It even inspires me cheer up when I’m down and look through my positive mood days and photos of what a happy me looks like.

Calendar
I think it’s best to use Apple’s own calendar for this app as it is also the calendar that is on Apple computers. Plus many apps you’ll download for productivity will be designed to sync with your Calendar for optimal organization.

Notebook: Notes
I also use the default notebook for quick notes as it syncs with my computer and is an official Apple product.

Task List: Any.DO
I decided to look for a more friendly task list manager after I only continued to add tasks to the default Apple task list app, Reminders, and felt very overwhelmed that the tasks were not really organized in any way at a glance which was very overwhelming to me. I often have many tasks per day that I need to do and I really enjoy getting to cross them out on Any.Do which has predictive task writing and can target friends online or by phone per task as well as share tasks with another. It has tons of simple yet useful functions that make it my favorite list manager.

Sketchbook: Skitch
Every artist and designer needs a sketchbook on hand just in case words wont do it and you need a quick visual. Since I got tired of carrying around my lot of tiny notebooks and sketchbooks and even my purse most days I decided to add Evernote’s sketchbook to my list of go-to applications. Very useful for annotating photographs and graphics as well when you’re working on the go!

Daily Schedule Planner: Daily Routine
I most recently found this application and I am already in love. It’s beautiful, extensive and although it’s been said (look at the reviews) to be too tough to figure out I prefer it over every other planner. The visuals, features and options it has top all other daily schedule planners and when you spend a few minutes to figure out how to arrange your daily schedules you’ll love it. It can remind you of each new scheduled event during the day and can set the same schedule for every work day and a separate for weekdays or absolutely any other way you can imagine. Try it! It’s worth the cost.

Fun
I’m often asked what my favorite apps are just for entertainment. A few fun apps I enjoy using when taking a break or the work day is over are usually horoscope and spirituality apps, design apps, social media apps and more. I’ll add another article with my favorite apps for the beginning of 2013 soon! Our past app list is probably a bit outdated so keep your eyes peeled for a new one coming soon!

Phone Cases
Looking for a new, cute and productive phone case to go with your new array of amazing applications? We have them coming to our store very soon so stay tuned. Our custom cases have gotten so much praise that we’re in the midst of developing some really special ones for you. Stay tuned!

What helps you stay organized and more productive on and off work days?

Thankful for Monday: Feeling Wonky

Hello, candylanders! Fear not for I did not and could not forget you. *majorsensoryoverload* My time is much more precious with baby girl around, I feel she deserves every waking moment and I seem to have no problem at all giving them to her!

hair bun
I’ve started a new artist project and have been scanning my old sketch/inspiration book.

Changes

Life always changes.. and the past sometimes seems amazing when you try to reminiscence about it.. but in reality you had problems then too. When you’re thinking about how wonderful things used to be you’re probably only focusing on the negatives now.. what what about the positives? I have to say I love changes because although I think I hate them and would want to be a child of the 80s forever — they’re amazing. Life changes all the time and you just have to enjoy each and every part… You only live them once!

You're my Candy Bunny
A print I made for Colette before she was born.

Japanese Fashion Magazines

So I’ve been away from all of my goodies (aka: loot) for quite awhile now.. it’s all still boxed and labeled nicely in storage until we move. I miss it so much! I’m probably going to do an *obsessedwithjunk* post when we move and photo-shoot everything I always took for granted!

I again remember why I miss Japan and the life I had there.. so amazing and filled with health, good food and happiness. The magazines take me back to a time when I surrounded myself with everything adorable, bright and colorful so that I wouldn’t focus on the bad. I tried to focus on cute things that made me feel happy (my Hello Kitty and Sanrio goodies go back to 1981!) and squeal. Japan makes that world of cute lifestyle real to me, I feel so at peace and home when I’m sleeping there.

On a really materialistic note I miss the stores, clothes, magazines and food a lot, too. These magazines are like rainbow soup for my candy-lovers soul.

Sketching

I love sketching once more. When I started painting again recently for a show I found my sketching skills as shaky as ever and I decided to start perfecting them again for this artist feature I’m participating in. I cannot WAIT to show you because I have some great ideas!
😉 I’m doing a sort of a scrapbook in my notebooks as well.

Cotton Candy

I think that with a name like fairy floss this candy pretty much speaks for itself. It’s sweet and flavored (if you’re lucky) sugar melted and dried by a cooling fan. Usually it’s melt-on-your-fingers pink and lick-your-lips blue. I had to go to the local fair recently to snag a monster-sized bag, no questions asked!

FAMILY

The little family I have makes me happiest of all. If I didn’t have them I would be a lot crazier than I am now! 😉 Ben has always been amazing to me and Colette makes me smile more than I ever thought I could! Everyday with them is the best day.

psychedelicake
Old inspiration sketch.

Thankful for Monday: Happiness Through Gratitude

This is a new kind of project I’m forcing myself to do. Having a few scheduled posts a week really works wonders for my over-stimulated brain. I cannot mindlessly list topics and ideas forever, brainstorming over great articles and DIY-material until I’m suddenly too drained to write or publish any of it.. silly! As much as I love lists, I’ve recently realized I’m wasting a lot of time on them. And.. as you may or may not know, a new mother’s time is very precious and limited.

So I’m urging myself to again start keeping a gratitude journal which once helped so much with my positive outlook. I had been keeping one for months on my iPhone previously, another in a journal my doctor encouraged me to start.. I must say that although I enjoy journaling and scribbling nonsense, the gratitude thing worked best digitally because it was always on hand. I could attach photos in a flash and rate my days.. sadly when I updated my iPhone OS, however, my restoration went wonky and my gratitude journal -and all of the photos- were deleted. I had a bit of a melt-down -I’m lying, it was a full-on panic attack- .. I was so upset I couldn’t now see the progress I had made.. the once unhealthy things I was so grateful for and the realization of what I should be grateful for.. to which of course my husband reminded me, “You have what you are grateful for right here, it shouldn’t be hard to start a new one. I see the progress you’ve made and deep down you know you’ve made it.”

So, on Mondays I will begin to look back at all of the wonderful (and even not-so-wonderful!) things I should be and am grateful for. It is said that keeping a gratitude journal is very healthy, a great way to be open to all of the amazing things you have in your life that you might not be noticing. It’s also said to lift your spirits in a way that cannot be denied. I agree and I urge you to try it! Even if just for a month.

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One

The sweet taste of a homegrown strawberry that I happened to rescue from the brink of death! We were in the grocery store and the fluorescent lighting must have left the shriveled plants with much to be desired. I instantly usherd one to the register and planted it in new soil and a large pot — now it’s branching out into my yard and attempting to spread sugary-sweet red fruit to all of the rabbits in the area. I did get to taste one berry, one very delicious berry, however when I watered it today I noticed my other three berries had been eaten. We have a cottontail friend roaming around now and again so I’m sure he was the one who experienced the delight of the fresh berries — at least someone enjoyed them!

Two

Every single coo and grunt my daughter makes. And the fact that I unbelievably have a daughter and can talk about her. It’s absolutely a trip and I never could have imagined how wonderful it would be. She’s been in my dreams for quite awhile so I feel very fortunate that she has arrived in my arms and left me with a scar I will never forget. I can’t to experience every new moment with her and I want to remember absolutely every day.

Three

Heart-wrenching memoirs of hardship and survival. I’m a dark, depressing memoir addict. I think it has something to do with being inspired by overcoming one’s past to become an amazing and creative person. Having been through a rough and tumbly past myself and having watched many of those I love fall to the negativity of their own past, it’s very enlightening to see what can be accomplished if you devote your life to overcoming it.

Four

My husband’s new-found appreciation for cooking. Not just because I get to taste all of his experiments, either, but because I am also passionate about cooking up my own creations and it’s double the excitement! We have yet another interest that we share and it’s the best kind of interest — the kind that tastes delicious. He keeps practicing on fresh Tilapia and I keep inhaling it.

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Five

Thrifting for vintage, kitschy mugs. Thrifting is not only fun alone, it’s even more fun because of the people you do it with. I often go thrifting with my best friend or husband and we have a blast finding kitschy goodies, vintage magazines and trying on 70s bathrobes. It doesn’t get old! You don’t need a lot of money to have a great time combing through pop-culture memorabilia — just a lot of time and patience. Even a box of old records or postcards can become an exciting giggle fest. No matter what their selection, make sure you look through the mugs and vintage cookbooks — they’ll always provide you with some inexpensive, kitschy fun for your kitsch-en!

What are five things that you’re thankful for this week?

Thankful for Monday: Web Gratitude

Gratitude journals are an easy task to add to your day that actually improves your happiness and gratefulness overtime. You begin take notice of what’s really important when you start writing down five things per day that you are thankful for.. whether you have a lot to be thankful for or not so many things.. it should help you evaluate what’s really important in your life for your happiness.

I definately keep a gratitude journal on my iPhone, it even lets you rate the day and attach a photo — great idea for bloggers! Imagine you rating each day and attaching a photo to symbolize it. What makes your days rate 5 (1-5)?

So since gratitude is always awesome I figured I’d attach some for the web world as well. I’m very thankful for the internet — without it my career would not exist. What better way to enjoy the wonderfulness of the world wide web than to appreciate 5 extra special places of interest each week?

Want to see something here? This could be related to humor, entertainment, design, diy, self-help, health, fashion, art,events, your call! If you want to let us know about your own blog or project, be sure to email us and you just might be listed here next Friday!

1

PaperCakes Finds (Cutie Girl Style post)
Chelsea is sweeter than sugar-coated gumdrops. When she told me her new finds list was inspired by me I was elated.. and then to see that the actual finds were snatched from my wildest dreams! This is exactly what I love the handcraft world because there is every kind of style, even my style, and they’re all made with the utmost care and precision of an artisan. Custom and one of a kind.

Instead of allowing someone to choose what is on the shelves we are choosing exactly what we want from the world and it makes us all a little bit more appreciative of the wonderful people making these amazing things. More empathy towards others is a huge thing to be thankful for — without it I would not have met many of the amazing people I’ve met on and offline.

2

Japan L.A.
One of the absolute cutest and most adorable pop culture shops right in L.A. They promote local artists and Japanese inspiration — two things I’m very passionate about. Absolutely adorable place, when I visited I couldn’t stop finding things to drop into my basket. I even found cute and well-loved gifts for MisterEducated and my best friend while there.

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(Photo Copyright Twinkie Chan)

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Twinkie Chan
If there were a more amazing decadent, pop art food textile designer I would be shocked. She creates adorable accessories that look good enough to eat sweet! Not only is she a diy-diva but she’s also a sweetheart to boot! I guarantee you’ll be drooling after you take a look at her creations!

4

Pupe Girl
A tasty little Japanese fashion site that you probably already know about but perhaps not.. you earn accessories and clothing by uploading photos of your own accessories and clothing as well as by participating in the community. It’s a cute Japanese social network based around fashion — what could be better?

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5

Bento Box Guide
An ‘old skool’ website I was surprised to still find up! It’s a cute little guide on bento boxes and is absolutely aimed towards the beginner, yes even you can make them! So give it a try and be proud of your adorable, healthy lunch.