If you spend time with some seasoned fire families, you’ll likely hear stories about the old days. You know, the days where they walked up hill both ways, never got a call from their firefighter while He was on shift, and had to rely on corded landlines to share important messages.
Today, things are WAY different. Gone are rotary phones and 10 cent text messages. Instead, we’ve got some incredible options literally at our fingertips.
First responder life comes with a lot of ups and down’s- especially when you’ve got the family involved. We enjoy being connected more than ever, and below you’ll find five essential apps for making it happen!
The App that allows you to send video messages to view later
We’re going to talk about the best option first, and one I love to recommend!
Since becoming a Fire Family, there have been missed moments and scheduling calls with unpredictable calls can lead to dissapointment!
Thankfully, we’ve got this app to use on busy days where we are playing phone tag and my husband can record a message in the afternoon for me to share with the kids at evening.
The app is called, MarcoPolo, and allows you to share videos to be viewed later (or over and over and over again!)
The App that helps you manage your money- even when you’re apart
There are quite a few stats that show that money (or lack of money) is the number one cause of disagreements and divorce.
So no matter if you are in a relationship, or co-parenting, or living with a roommate- money is important!
There are SO many apps that fall under this category. Mint is a popular app we’ve used, and helps for a full picture of where you stand with your budget.
Our prefered app for this is designed more for married households, and that is the EveryDollar App. We recommend this app for those Fire Families looking to get out of debt.
The App that helps you connect with other Fire Families
Connecting with other First Responders has never been easier (technically) but in some ways it still feels hard to form a genuine connection with other people online.
I get it! We are all different personalities, and it can be hard to know where to look or who to talk to!
Thankfully you’ve got several options for finding a community online.
You can try something low key, like podcasts (there’s an app for that!) and we’ve got a great list of podcasts for fire and ems to relate too.
Or start following some people on social media like Instagram. There you’ll find other Firefighters and Firefighter Wives who have figured out a few things and love to share what they know with you! Here’s a list of accounts to follow on instagram that are firefighter wives.
The App that offers in person video chatting
It is essential that you have a way to connect on shift- especially when those shifts cover several days!
Most Fire Families have adopted an evening routine where they video chat, and this has been an incredible improvement considering most fire families in the 90’s barely got a phone call.
Apps in this category include Facetime, Hangouts, and Google Duo! There are so many options here, from using facebook messenger to any number of other messaging apps that include voice and video chatting.
The App that helps you keep your todo list organized
The number one thing that my firefighter and I have argued about is… lack of communication regarding responsibilities.
I know I know. It seems silly, but in reality, it was a serious problem for us.
So we got simple and started doing things on paper- but when my Firefighter is on shift, that’s the opposite of simple!
Then we discovered apps that allow us to create checklists AND add other people to complete tasks as well. These are typically used for businesses, but work incredible for the distance relationships.
Apps in this category that I’ve personally tried include trello, Todoist and workflowy. These all allow for adding additional people to the to do list- so you can keep track of who did (or needs to do!) what. Cozi is also an app that comes highly recommended by other Fire Families!
But wait, there’s more!
More great things to share with you, that is!
Not sure what to text your Firefighter on shift besides the same old boring to do list? Check out this list of 40 things to say to get started with less boring texting!
Or if your a Firefighter, definitely text your partner these memes that will have them laughing out loud!
Bible verses that relate to this wild Fire Life are also good ideas to text and send during shift days… unless you need a really good laugh, then you can head over to these posts: