Kids and tech its a hard balance #VZParent

Kids and tech its a hard balance #VZParent

Kids and technology isnt easy to find a balance, we have always been the family where the kids have old hand me down iphones… and its only recently that we started discussing what features we can put in place to limit screen time.

This holiday season I’ve partnered up with Verizon to share some of their resources that will give parents some ideas of the cool technology thats out there… Verizon has a great section of their site thats “The parents’ guide to kids and tech.” Sure it covers which of Verizon unlimited plans makes sense for your family, but it also covers some really cool products that I can happily say work really well.

Have you heard of the GizmoWatch? I found this to be an incredible product for my son when he was in the 3rd and 4th grade, still too young for a typical cell phone (in my book) but did need a way to communicate with us when he was having a playdate or at an after school event.  This smart watch is also a GPS locator and a phone (that is limited list of names they can call – you can control who the child has access to call from the Gizmo app. They even came out with a new Mickey Mouse 90th Anniversary Edition ( that I know my middle child would love to get.

I also really loved this article on Balancing trust and safety: How parents can monitor their teen’s digital activity as its now something we’re working with Marc. I’m so excited to see Verizon offer up resources to help us parents in this digital world.

So what other useful resources have you read for helping parents with kids deal with the digital world?

The Ultimate Tech Holiday Gift Guide #VZParent

The Ultimate Tech Holiday Gift Guide #VZParent

Every year its a bit harder to shop for people there are sooooo many amazing choice of what products to pick up for who and where… Worry no more because I’ve partnered up with Verizon to bring you an ultimate gift guide for anyone that loves technology.  Most of these items can be found in store but all these items are available right now on their website.

Wireless headphones are a must these days…Some phones dont even have a headphone jack anymore, so here are two choices: over the head and in-ear.

For the in-ear headphones:  I’ve been crushing hard on these Bose SoundSport Free, they’re completely wireless. Comes in three colors Orange/Navy, Black, and Navy/Citron (my personal favorite). Shop from Verizon.

For the over the head: You cant wait on a subway train during rush hour and not see at least two or three of the Bose QuietComfort 35 Wireless Headphones II on people’s ear.  The noise cancellation feature is some of the best around and will turn a large noise subway car in to a little more then a mumble and imagine taking that on a flight. Shop from Verizon.

I carry one almost everywhere I go these days cause no matter how new my phone is that battery never lasts long enough… sure I’m a power user on instagram and twitter all day long but by 6pm if I have plans to go out at night I’m needing to recharge my phone.  the mophie powerstation plus 6000 with Switch-Tip Cable is perfect for both android and apple products and will give you two additional charges. Shop from Verizon.

Now if you’ve gotten a new phone in the last year or so you’ve heard it has the ability to charge wirelessly but it comes with a cord to charge… so rarely do people splurge on a wireless charging pad which makes them a great gift.  mophie charge stream pad plus is optimized for Apple, Samsung and other Qi–enabled smartphones. Shop from Verizon.

I’m sure by now you’ve seen someone with a smart watch but this year apple announced that their watch no longer needs a phone to connect to the internet (sure an additional monthly fee for a smart device will apply) but thinking that you can call from a smartwatch that is now fully waterproof is pretty amazing. I love how this version comes with an enhanced heart rate app too.  Shop from Verizon.

These are just a few of my favorite things and you can find a ton more great gifts over on and in the Verizon stores this holiday season.  PS. if anyone gets me anything off this list for my holiday gifts, you win 😉

Lucasfilm’s Solo: A Star Wars Story blasts on to your home screens

Lucasfilm’s Solo: A Star Wars Story blasts on to your home screens

Solo: A Star Wars Story is out on  DigitalMovies Anywhere, 4K Ultra HD, and soon on Blu-ray.

Board the Millennium Falcon and journey to a galaxy far, far away in SOLO: A STAR WARS STORY, an all-new adventure with the most beloved scoundrel in the galaxy. Through a series of daring escapades deep within a dark and dangerous criminal underworld, Han Solo befriends his mighty future copilot Chewbacca and meets the notorious gambler Lando Calrissian, in a journey that will set the course of one of the Star Wars saga’s most unlikely heroes.

The film stars Alden Ehrenreich, Woody Harrelson, Emilia Clarke, Donald Glover, Thandie Newton, Phoebe Waller-Bridge and Paul Bettany.

If you didnt catch it in the cinemas then I highly recommend you catch it at home.  I really loved the movie, thought it played really well with the history we’ve learned over the years in Star Wars episodes 4,5,6 and now in episodes 7,8.

As a special treat one lucky fan will be receiving the Blu-ray combo pack.

How to win it:  Leave a comment with your favorite Star Wars character.

Contest ends 11:59 pm EST on September 24, 2018. Limited to US residents only. Must be over the age of 18 to enter. Winner chosen at random.

Visit the official SOLO: A STAR WARS STORY site:

Voice Originals: When In Rome is a board game you play with your ALEXA SPEAKER

Voice Originals: When In Rome is a board game you play with your ALEXA SPEAKER

Voice Originals: When In Rome is a board game you play with your ALEXA SPEAKER! Yep, you heard me right.  It’s a whole new way to play with and interact with Alexa. This game is so much fun and great for the whole family. My kids loved listening to Alexa ask the questions, and I’m not gonna lie, it got a little competitive in my house very quickly last night!

Let’s get to the important stuff, When In Rome is the first in a series of social board games that are powered by smart speakers. The first of its kind in the world, actually. In the game, you split into two teams and fly around a board game travel map to 20 different cities. When you visit a new city, Alexa will introduce you to a real recorded local who asks a question about food, culture, customs, etc. You get points for correct answers and can earn fancy souvenir items from new friends, which help you advance in the game.

When In Rome is a really cool way for the whole family to learn about all different parts of the world, and even about our hometown New York. That’s right – there are some tricky questions to this game that! And after 5 plays with the family, we still haven’t hit any repeats, which is a refreshing for a trivia game.

While my kids are a bit on the younger side – the suggested age is 13 – my wife and I were able to help them out. It also helps that the whole game is run by Alexa! That’s right! There’s no rulebook, no need to keep track of the score and no reading question cards. With When In Rome, Alexa tells you how to play, asks the questions and keeps track of the score. While I was a bit skeptical in the beginning, it was enjoyable to have Alexa guide gameplay and not have to reference a rulebook or score card.

Here’s the best part, since the technology is already being used in tens of millions of homes, When In Rome retails for just $30! Great value. If you want to pick up your own copy of Voice Originals: When In Rome, you can go to Amazon or  Dont forget you need to own an Amazon Dot (but for a few extra dollars you might go with the Dot kids edition) or Echo to play.

Acronis #1PersonalBackup Twitter Party!

Acronis #1PersonalBackup Twitter Party!

Acronis one the of the global leaders in online backup just released Acronis True Image 2019.  In making the announcement, Acronis revealed that its artificial intelligence-based anti-ransomware technology – which is integrated into all of its backup solutions, including the new product – stopped more than 200,000 ransomware attacks on 150,000 customers last year. With current ransoms demanding an average of $522 per attack, the defense prevented more than $104 million in damages.

Acronis True Image 2019 is the only home solution that allows users to make full image backups to both local and cloud storage, or lets users clone an active system disk on either a Windows or Mac machine – capabilities that strengthen the user’s control over their data protection and management.

And in celebration of the the new release of  Acronis True Image 2019 we’re hosting a Twitter Party with a ton of great prizes. The twitter party is taking place on 8/21 at 9pm EST using #1PersonalBackup hosted by @acronis @dadarocks @techsavvymama @benspark and @themamamaven.  The official rules of the twitter party are here.

Pricing and Availability
There are three editions of Acronis True Image 2019:

  • Standard is a perpetual license designed for customers who store their data on local drives only. No cloud storage or cloud-based features are included. Pricing starts at $49.99 for one computer.
  • Advanced is a one-year subscription that includes 250 GB of Acronis Cloud Storage and access to all cloud-based features. Pricing starts at $49.99 per year for one computer.
  • Premium is a one-year subscription that includes blockchain-based data certification and electronic signature capabilities, as well as 1 TB of Acronis Cloud Storage. Starts at $99.99 per year for one computer.

All versions include Acronis Active Protection against ransomware and cover an unlimited number of mobile devices. Subscription customers can purchase additional cloud storage as needed.

By adding the ability to create an all-in-one recovery tool on an external hard drive, Acronis True Image 2019 makes restoring a system as easy as plugging in the external drive. Called the Acronis Survival Kit, it is as comprehensive and flexible in emergencies as a Swiss Army Knife – containing everything a user needs to restore a system from boot media to the system partition and all of their backups.

Creating backups is also easier with new event-based scheduling options, such as automatically backing up when an external USB drive is attached. For a personal backup solution that already offers tremendous customization, the new trigger-based options provide even more flexibility to users.


Amazon Device Prices for Amazon Prime Day (starts now!)

Amazon Device Prices for Amazon Prime Day (starts now!)

It’s happening now that some of the great Amazon Prime Day deals are available on Amazon Devices: