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I remember when I first got an Amazon account. It was last century. Yeah, about the time I was rocking the chat rooms, ICQ and my trendy hotmail account, I discovered that the music I loved could be purchased on CD from an online retailer called Amazon.
One of my first purchases was a Mercy Me album…. The 1997 album Traces of Rain. The current listing says “this is a very rare independent recording.” I also remember buying the Monkees More of the Monkees on CD.
Back in the day, as a teen with an unusual taste in music, Amazon was my resource to find the things you couldn’t buy anywhere else. I thought I was so cool with my “secret” resource.
Now, as a mom with more on my TO DO list than time in the day, Amazon has become more than my resource for hard to find things. (Though it’s still definitely that. I’m fond of saying “I bet you could find it on Amazon.”)
*Just to be clear, this post was not sponsored or endorsed by Amazon in any way. I really just love them this much. The links to Amazon ARE affiliate links which means you can score the awesomeness of Amazon while supporting this blog at no additional cost to you. Read my full disclosure here. *
If you have an Amazon Prime account, you may not be aware of all the features it provides!
I first got an Amazon Prime account to take advantage of the free shipping. As a homeschooling mom, I order a lot of books online. Sometimes I may hear of a book that fits right into our lessons for the week and I can hop on Amazon, order it, and have it delivered in 2 days!
It’s hard to overstate how much I adore the quick and free shipping.
Entertained and Educated with Prime TV
We haven’t had cable or satellite TV in years!
Several months ago, our internet-ready DVD/Blu ray player stopped being able to connect to the internet. Our only way to watch TV was to connect another device (iPad, phone, laptop) to the TV to watch. It was annoying. I did a little research and realized that the Amazon Fire TV would connect us to Netflix and Prime TV.
Prime TV programming is included free with your Amazon Prime account. There are additional programs and movies you can purchase or rent for a small fee. Our toddler has discovered a TON of great shows on Amazon Prime. Team Umizoomi, Zaboomafoo, and other programs whose names sound like toddler babble.
You don’t have to use the Fire TV device to watch Prime TV, but it does make it easier. We also watch TED Talks and PBS through the apps on the device. And the coolest thing is your Fire TV remote connects you to Alexa (amazon’s version of Siri) who can tell you the weather, help you place an order on Amazon, or even place your Domino’s Pizza order. I don’t have a local Domino’s or that would be happening all the time.
Amused and Organized with Prime Music
Prime Music…it’s a lot like Pandora… without the ads and again, FREE with your Prime Account. I’m listening to a channel called “Classical Focus” right now on my iPhone app.
We’ve also enjoyed playing our Prime Music in the car (on my phone app) and with our Echo Dot. The Echo Dot is a little device that sits around waiting to answer your every question. It’s useful for time when your child unknowingly utters a phrase that makes you start singing random old songs, at which point your child looks at you like you are crazy. All you have to do is say, “Alexa, play Islands in the Stream” and the song starts playing proving to your child that you’re not a wakko…or maybe not. Try Amazon Music Unlimited 30-Day Free Trial
Well-Read with *FREE* Prime Reading
This one’s new and I’m excited about it! I still haven’t bought a Kindle, but I have an iPad with a Kindle app and now, Amazon has tons of free content you can deliver right to your eReader. Just sent myself the Official Harry Potter Cookbook. For Free. That’s a $12 hardback book I’ve had in my wish list for ages!
Prime reading has magazines, fiction, non fiction, and kid’s books! Try it here: Amazon.com – Read eBooks using the FREE Kindle Reading App on Most Devices
Finally Organize the Albums with Amazon Photo Storage
As a mom and a photographer, I have a LOT of photographs! Several thousands of photographs stored on my computer and various external hardrives.
Let me just say, first of all, you should PRINT your photographs in some form or fashion. I prefer to do annual year books and regular updates to our wall portraits. But, you also need to have copies of all your digital files. Hard drives fail. It’s not a question of if, but when, will it happen.
If your photographs are precious (and aren’t they all) having an online backup on Amazon could save you a lot of heartache.Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial
Be the Hero of the Household with Subscribe & Save and Amazon Pantry
Ok…I saved this for last because this one has been life-changing for me.
Let me repeat.
To fully understand the impact this feature has had on us, I need to describe my life a little. I have 4 kids. They are homeschooled and therefore with me all the time.
Running errands requires a herculean effort of getting everyone dressed, shoed, and in the car…then out of the car, filling in to the store, then the checkout lines.
I’ve tried to simplify the grocery shopping experience as much as possible. I memorized the layout of the store. I made a checklist in order of my preferred route through the store. I try to plan our meals in advance so I know exactly what to get at the store.
Imagine going through all that then your child comes to you that night and says, “Momma, I’m out of toothpaste.” We were just. at. the. store. *breathe*
With Subscribe & Save, you find the items you use all the time and set them up on a subscription.
Every month, we get a large bag of dog food, toilet paper, guinea pig hay, and pull-ups or diapers.
You don’t have to do monthly though! Some items come in bulk like 3 bottles of dishwasher detergent. I figured we use one about every 2 months so I set our subscription for that item to be delivered every 6 months.
Once you have 5 items in a month, you get an even greater discount.
There are some things that aren’t available on Subscribe and Save. And sometimes, you need it sooner and forgot to set up your subscription.
Enter: Prime Pantry
The other day, I as I applied deodorant, the packaging scraped my arm pit. I realized I had not ordered more. So I hoped on Amazon, added it to an order from Amazon Pantry. I asked the kids, “is there anything you need?” They said soap so I added that. My husband had asked me to pick up soap for him when I went to Aldi the day before–they don’t have his brand–so I added his too.
The next day, my package arrived. Before I even needed to apply deodorant again.
With Subscribe & Save, the things you need arrive before you even realize you needed them.
With Prime Pantry, you can save yourself a trip to the store.
Honestly, my Amazon orders arrive sooner than if I made a note on my to do list and made the trip to the store myself.
One more thing: I haven’t used them yet, but Amazon also has Dash Buttons which are little buttons you can press when you are running low on frequently used items and they will ship them to you automatically.
I hate running errands.
I love spending time with my family.
I like my trip to the store to be about looking for quality ingredients and thinking of creative ways to cook them.
I hate keeping a running inventory of our family’s necessary items in my head!
Amazon simplifies that process. It’s out of my head and DONE.
And I don’t even have to put on shoes!
We use Amazon’s features everyday. It’s totally worth the annual subscription! Chances are you have a subscription too, but maybe you haven’t made use of all the features. (I didn’t even list all of them here!)
If you haven’t gotten on board with Amazon yet, they’ve come a long way from just being my source for unusual music. You can try it for free here:
Try Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial
I know there are a lot of Prime Mamas out there. What is your favorite feature of Amazon Prime? What haven’t you tried yet that sounds awesome?
Living Room Dance Parties and Picnic Weather,