Candace: Do you have any suggestions when it comes to keeping families connected and organized?
Manoush Robin: "Oh, Candace, I absolutely do because I don't know about you- fall means back to school for people, but it also means back to back crazy family hectic schedules. So I've got some low cost and some even free ways that you can keep the family in sync and communicating. I want to start out by talking about how you can stay in touch with all the people in your life. You probably know Skype- it's a way of getting free and low cost calls but now you can make those calls straight from your home phone without even turning on your computer. The FREETALK Connect-me adaptor uses a broadband internet connection with your home phone and the adaptor is under $40. It comes with 60 minutes of free calls or if you're in the market for a new phone you might want to check out the Skype GE cordless which connects straight to your Skype contacts, so it's a way to keep that monthly phone bill negligible."
Candace: And with Skype, do you have to have a certain connection speed to use it?
MR: "You just need to have a broadband internet connection to use it, yeah."
Candace: How about when it comes to parents with small children?
MR: "I have got the perfect thing, this is not just for small children but for kids of any age; you probably know UNO, right? It's the card game that's really great for all ages and if you're looking for a way to get quality time as we're all talking about; a way for the family to take a break, this is great because UNO is turning 40 this year and it's getting a digital update with the unique personality. Meet Mattel's UNO Roboto. This little guy lets players customize their game, record their names; he'll even MC and keep track of your house rules. This is a fun way to get the family to actually come together and take a break."
UNO Roboto Game – Amazon.com
Candace: Do you have any tips on keeping families active for fall?
MR: "Well, if anything we're finding that families are insanely active but mom or dad or whoever's in charge of running the carpools and all those things; they can be hard to sing for things because you don't know if it's going to work in your schedule. I have found a great way to keep track of your family's schedule and it's free. This is from Day-Timer and it's called HomeLife; it's an online calendar that lets you color code each family members schedule. You can also create to do lists and send reminders. You can get on your smartphone and you can sync it with your Google outlook calendar too. And let's face it, Candace, this is way more efficients than scrolling stuff on that calendar that you've got stuck on your refrigerator door.
Now the last thing I want to tell you about is more of a safety feature- Sprint has a new Drive First application for Android phones. It'll keep you; but especially I think teenagers safe by automatically locking a phone if the car is moving more than 10 miles per hour, so you can make sure that your kid isn't talking or texting while driving which we know is so dangerous; because the app sends incoming calls to voicemail, it replies to texts and it silences alerts and the app can be overridden in an emergency but it will alert mom or dad. And this is a great price as well, only $2 per month per phone but you can find out more about all of these products and other great ideas that we have for keeping your family connected- just go to DailyLounge.com, that's the place to go!"