iPad Air: My constant companion

My mom is a retired university and elementary school teacher. She's had an iMac for years, received her first iPad in 2011, now has an iPhone and Apple TV as well, and is looking forward to adding an Apple Watch to her setup this April. Since the iPad has replaced the Mac as her primary computing device, she thought it might be interesting to explain how and why. Needless to say, we agreed immediately. — Rene

I wake up early and, as I am retired, I can afford to spend the first couple of hours curled up reading the news on my iPad. I've collected several newspaper apps, including the Montreal Gazette, La Presse, and the New York Times that let me stay informed in two languages and across two countries.

I sometimes also catch up on television using the CBC, CTV, or Global apps. I especially enjoy that I can immediately check on people and facts mentioned in the articles or on the shows. The Safari browser and Google search engine are only ever a click and a tap away.

Following my One on One session at my local Apple Retail Store, I now use the Calendar app to keep track of all my appointments and upcoming events. I also keep a running record of shopping items and gifts to get. I use Notes instead of Reminders because I don't really need to be reminded of the items, I just need to know they're safely stored. Maybe I'll try Reminders at some point, though.

Both sync with my iPhone 5c so I know I'm always up to date and ready for the day ahead.

After breakfast, I check and answer emails and send iMessages to my family and friends so they know I'm thinking of them.

I love that I can stay in almost instant contact with the people who are most important to me, regardless of whether they're down the street, in the next city, across the country, or across the ocean in Europe or Africa.

I'm also very fond of emoji.

During the day I get creative. I have great fun using Waterlogue in combination with Martha Stewart's Craftstudio to create personalized cards and thank you notes for special occasions and special people.

While I'm tidying up or while driving long distances, I listen to books on Audible or the music I've downloaded from iTunes. It keeps my mind busy and helps pass the time.

If I'm out of the house, I typically use my iPhone. If I know I'll be out of the house or traveling for an extended period of time, I bring my iPad.

One of my favorite things to do is read iBooks. I do it whenever I have time between appointments or when waiting for a rendezvous. It's immensely enjoyable to always have my favorite authors with me, and like my calendar, it syncs with my iPhone so I can always pick up right where I left off no matter which device I have with me.

When my god children visit, I let them work with Reading Rainbow or play some educational games as a reward for good behavior. I've also bought some videos to show them as a special treat.

I go to Taiji class twice a week. In between sessions, I use the Taiji videos on my iPad as well as a cardio video to make sure I get some exercise in every day.

As evening falls, I check the news again, and my mail and messages. Sometimes I AirPlay shows I've missed to my Apple TV.

And when I go to sleep at night, if I'm not too tired, I read a little more in iBooks to relax and wind down.

Like I said at the beginning, it's become my constant companion.

Mrs Ritchie