I (Sarah) remember the first time I ever heard about a phone app: I couldn’t even understand what word the person was saying (“what?!”), let alone grasp the concept of what one did. Now, of course, I can’t imagine life without customized software on my mobile phone!

How would I know what route to drive to the indoor pickleball courts? Would I still have to download music? Get my friends to reimburse me in cash? 

Here are must-have apps of several members of Team AMR, and why they love them so much.



I think I could live without this houseplant care app, but I am pretty sure my plants couldn’t! It helps me identify plants; teaches me how to care for them; sets up a care schedule for me; and even helps me determine which rooms in my house are best for particular plants I own or want to. My houseplants are surviving and thriving so much better than ever, and I am gaining confidence in my abilities to nurture and help them grow! 

—Jessica Hofheimer, Traditional Running Programs Coach

phone apps


My very best friends live in other states, and we only get to see one another in person once a year. To stay close, we use Voxer for daily chatting. I know some people prefer Marco Polo, but I love Voxer for its simplicity and ease of use. In a digital world where I’m bombarded with videos and images, I love that Voxer is all audio and I can hear their sweet voices. Our group chat is a lifeline for me! We’ve gone from raising babies to college-age kids and managed to stay incredibly close thanks to technology.

—Cathy Engstrom, TLAM Club Manager


In 2021, I set a personal goal to read 100 books. A friend recommended using the Goodreads app to keep track and stay accountable. It’s addicting! There is something so gratifying about adding a book and seeing it count toward my annual goal. I also love having a record of the books I’ve read and ratings I’ve assigned. I enjoy reading reviews before I select a new book.  

—Liz Waterstraat, Heart + Sole and Triathlon Coach (+ co-host of Miles of Books,
debuting on February 24 at the end of our Friday podcast)

Carpool Kids

I was introduced by a fellow mom: At first I scoffed (“who needs an app for something that’s been done at a low-tech level for decades?!”), but it truly helps me to stay organized and sane with the various carpools my kids are in. It’s interactive and user-friendly; you simply sign up for slots and indicate on which days you can drive or need a ride. Plus, the riders’ addresses are stored in the app, so I don’t have to scramble to find them or bumble around trying to remember whose house is which. 

—Sarah Wassner Flynn, co-host Many Happy Miles podcast


The library in my county in Oregon uses Libby to loan ebooks and audiobooks. I listen to at least two
audiobooks a week while on walks, driving, running errands, etc., and I always have an ebook or two on loan
to read while I’m traveling after I’ve finished the physical book I’ve brought along. It’s much lighter than carrying several books in my suitcase!

—Brooke Thames, BAMRbassador Coordinator (+ Southwest Airlines flight attendant!)


Despite being a Russian minor in college, I’ve always sucked at learning languages–until my teens turned me on to Duolingo! This highly effective, slightly addictive app turns learning a language into a game. Today marks Day 400 (!) of my Spanish lessons streak. I love getting and giving support to friends. 

—Sarah Bowen Shea, Chief Brand Director + podcast host

Your turn: What are your favorite apps?