Setup Family Sharing on Your Apple Devices [How To]

With the launch of Apple Music, we had to set up our family on the Family Share plan.   Up to six family members can use Apple music under one account if you are connected via Family Sharing.

Apple has a great tutorial on their support site that tells you how to set up Family Sharing, but it left out some details that I would have found helpful, so after 4 hours of tinkering, searching the internet, setting up family share and then disbanding the family to set it all up again, here are a few things I have learned.

1.  First, decide who is going to be the family organizer.  We just assumed it was best to make my husband the organizer since we had all been using his Apple ID for purchases previously, but the organizer receives a LOT of notifications (at least when you are dealing with four underage kiddos) so we ended up disbanding that family and setting it up with myself as the organizer.  I worried not having the original Apple ID as the organizer would cause issues with purchases, but it has not.  If you do not have a credit card on file you will want to set that up.)

2.  If your kids don't have Apple IDs already you can do this WHILE adding them to Family Share.  This will allow you to set up IDs for kids under 13 without fishing birthdays.  You don't have to create Apple IDs for them ahead of time.

I didn't know this and went through and set up new ones for all of the kids first and had to go and change their birth dates (which is more steps than you would think) after the fact.

3 - After everyone is set up for family share, make sure everyone is set to share purchases.
You can check this at  Settings > iCloud > Family   (on each persons iPad/iPhone)

4 - If your family previously shared an Apple ID for purchases and/or you created new Apple IDs during the set up, you will want to add the individual Apple IDs to each persons device.

You can do that at  Settings > iTunes & App Store

Also you will want to make sure to add the Apple ID under Messages (Settings > Messages > Send & Receive) and Mail (Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars > iCloud) as well.  This won't effect family sharing, but will come in handy if you have changed or added Apple IDs and will prevent frustration down the line!

At this point you should be all set to share purchases!!


** When you want to download an app purchased by a family member, go to the App Store on your device and search under your family members purchased apps. (They should be listed under  My Purchases)

** Not all apps are 'shareable'!!  To find out if the app you are buying can be shared, click on the app in the App Store and scroll down to information and it should say Family Sharing.

**You can only switch to a different family group once per year.  So our little mistake of making my hubby the family organizer...we are now stuck as a family for the next 365 days.

**Children under 13 can't be removed from a family. If you need to, you can transfer the child to another family or delete their Apple ID.


Harris "HB" Albright

Yesterday my husband's grandfather passed away. There wasn't a single moment from the first time I met him that I didn't feel like he was my grandpa too.  These two people sure knew how to love and I am forever grateful to have been a part of that for the last 17 years.

Below are the words that my husband shared on Facebook.  Although you may not have known Harris Albright, I still wanted you to hear these words.

Today I lost my last living grandparent, my grandfather Harris 'HB' Albright. I know most of you never knew him but for those who did and those who didn't these are 5 things I leaned from him by the way he lived his life.

1. To be loyal

His working life was spent as a personal aide to Howard Hughes. I would have loved to have learned more of his personal stories about his experiences during those years with him. One time a few years ago after watching the DiCaprio biopic I tried and tried to get him to tell me about the oddities and obsessive compulsive nature of his former boss but he refused to besmirch the man. He said the only thing he knew "Mr. Hughes" to obsess over was reduced drag and sustained airflow.

Further evidence of loyalty was that he was a lifetime Kansas City Royals and Chiefs fan. That kind of loyalty is not for sissy's.

2. To finish what you start

He always had a project he was working on and he remained focused on it until it was done. He took breaks to eat and sleep or to help grandma - not because he thought he deserved the rest.

3. To not lower expectations

You never wanted to be caught standing with your hands in your pockets or looking too comfortable on the couch when grandpa was working on a project. He always had a job for you. He didn't discriminate on the type of job he gave you just because you were 5-years-old either. He simply told you he needed you to do 'x' and to let him know when you were done. He didn't give you directions but expected you to find the way to get it done and to continue to work on it until you did it right.

4. To show up

I played a lot of baseball from Junior High to Junior College in some very hot Arizona summers. I do not recall a single game grandma and grandpa missed. Like clock work 15 minutes before every game I saw the two of them walk up to the field. Grandpa always carried both lawn chairs, a red cooler and their umbrella. Grandma would always wave even though she knew I had to be focused on the preparation for the game. Today I wish I would have at least tipped my cap to them.

5. To wholly love

The love I felt from my grandfather and grandmother were one and the same. Not individual but exponential. The individual memories of them are few - they did so little apart. Mark Twain once wrote about Adams' Eve that, "wheresoever she was, there was Eden." There lives were no more a paradise than any of ours but they were the greatest examples of what it means to be a help-meet to one another.

To me they will always be standing together at their front door arm in arm continually waving goodbye even as their images grew smaller and smaller in your rear view window. Today, I know they are together again. They were never meant to be apart. My faith and soul reminds me that families are eternal. We will be with and love those we have lost again. What sweet reunions must be happening.


Firecracker Jello and 100+ More Independence Day ideas!

Jello is a must have item at our 4th of July celebration.  I love these individual jello firecrackers from Cincy Shopper.  I will be on the look out for the perfect cups to use for these!! 

4th of July is probably my favorite holiday, so it is no surprise that I have hundreds of great 4th of July ideas in my archives!!  

Here are a few categories to get you started!! 

4th of July Ideas
4th of July Drink Stirrer from Martha Stewart
4th of July Wreath from Naptime Crafting


Sugar Coated Nanagrams

I love when talented people I know decide to start sharing their talents with the internet.  I watched my friend Barb develop her cookie talents over the years and she has recently started blogging about her kitchen adventures over at Sugar Coated Nanagrams.

French Macarons from Sugar Coated Nanagrams

You know a baker is legit if they can make French macarons!  Those puppies are not easy.  She shares her recipe and her tips for those, but you can also check out the likes of English Muffin bread and Strawberry Pie (perfect for Summer!!) too.


Healthy Snacks for End of Year School Parties

Is it Summer yet?  Oh yeah, not for three more weeks.  This is the first time since my kids started school 9 years ago that school doesn't end until June and I am trying my hardest not to mentally check out.  (I am starting to rethink how much I loved having that full week off over Thanksgiving though!)

And the hard part is that there is still a lot of IMPORTANT stuff left to do like finals, playoffs, end of year parties, and graduation!  Maybe that is why I am so ready for Summer!

My sister-in-law sent me a text asking for ideas for a healthy snack for the end of the year class party.  I told her to bring a 10 pound bag of apples.  But in case you are looking for something a little cuter (but still on the easy enough to pull off the last day of school side, here are some cute ones that won't break the bank or your will to live.

My first choice would be these cute butterfly bags from Squawk Fox.  You can fill them with anything and if you let your kids decorate the clothes pins they are relatively easy.  (I would even leave off the cute eyes as a last minute sanity saver.  She has a great tutorial on her site on how to put them together.