November 2009 Keep-It-Together Checklist Stay calm and in control with Real Simple's easy-to-follow monthly to-do list. Get it delivered to your inbox every month. Save this checklist! Progress Saved Your progress has been saved **You've changed this checklist.** Remember to save your progress. See Your Saved Checklists | All Checklists done! Turn off the outdoor water supply. Otherwise trapped water can freeze, causing pipes to burst. Remember to empty the garden hose to prevent it from splitting. Unscrew it and coil it, leaving one end on the ground; in the process, gravity will force water out. done! Save on shoes and boots. Before buying a new pair for the winter, examine where the sole meets the upper; you shouldn’t see glue or loose stitching. You also don’t want to see bumps, loose threads, or awkward construction where two pieces of leather or fabric meet. Next, look for discoloration or unevenness in the material, whether leather or man-made, as it will only get worse with time. Finally, make sure the heels don’t wobble. done! Go shopping online on Thanksgiving weekend. Many “Black Friday” online sales begin on Thanksgiving Day, so while everyone else is falling asleep in front of the football game, steal away for a few minutes and score some great deals. Too busy to hit the Web on Turkey Day? Then check sites like target.com and bestbuy.com early on Black Friday morning; they often make changes to their websites before dawn. done! Clean your stovetop in just five minutes. Keep the area spotless pre- and post-turkey with this quick routine. Step 1) Make sure the stovetop is cool. Remove the grates and the knobs (with an electric range, also take off the drip pans). Drop them into a few inches of hot, soapy water in the sink. See the rest of the speed clean plan done! Add Brussels sprouts to tonight’s dinner. Add an earthy taste and a hearty texture with these mini members of the cabbage family. Bonus: You’ll get a good helping of vitamins C and A, dietary fiber, and potassium. done! Sign up for traffic alerts. Plug in your route at traffic.com and indicate when you want real-time traffic alerts via text (for example, every day at 7 A.M. or right before you will be heading to the airport to catch a flight). You can also specify that you want the alert only if there’s major congestion on the road, or opt for a phone call if you’re not text-savvy. done! Pack something different for lunch. Your lunch doesn’t need to be as boring as the brown bag it came in. Get inspired by new recipes for sandwiches, soups, and salads. Progress saved Progress SavedYour progress has been saved**You've changed this checklist.**Remember to save your progress.