See what was in this issue of Real Simple.

By Real Simple
Updated December 13, 2005
Sang An

What a Great Idea!, pg. 28
The winners of Real Simple’s inventors’ contest share their eureka moments and life-simplifying ideas. Their stories may even spark a lightbulb moment of your own.

Lighten Up, pg. 162
Low-fat cooking becomes no-fuss, no-stress, and ― best of all ― delicious with these five everyday techniques. (Who knew vegetables could be so creamy...without cream?)

Bedtime Story, pg. 172
Three less-than-perfect bedrooms in one Wisconsin town get dreamy transformations with a few fresh, foolproof ideas.

The Future is Clear, pg. 180
Easy ways to cover up four common skin problems ― including wrinkles and breakouts ― with affordable makeup.

Portrait of a Marriage, pg. 186
With a marriage each behind them, Kyle and Bill White have learned how perseverance (and Post-its) go a long way to help blend families and lives.


New Uses for Old Things, pg. 51
A business-card holder stores sweetener packets in your purse; a laundry bag stops small items from falling through dishwasher racks.

Modern Manners, pg. 54
Sally who? Advice for those times when you forget someone’s name.

Products of the Month, pg. 58
A belt that turns a dish towel into an apron; sheets that keep you warm ― and your bed partner cool.

Healthy Habit, pg. 60
Thought vaccinations were just for kids? Think again.

Party Trick, pg. 65
Order personalized napkins for your next get-together.

Fake It, Don’t Make It, pg. 66
Chicken and Dumplings


Thoughts, pg. 8

Your Words, pg. 43
What’s the craziest thing you ever did for love?

How to Find Your Way, pg. 71
A writer realizes that the world does not end just because she’s constantly lost in it.

Postscript, pg. 224
An excerpt from Money, a Memoir: Women, Emotions, and Cash, by Liz Perle.

The Guide


  • Beastly behavior: negotiating tricky situations with people and pets, pg. 81



  • Fancy a cuppa? Your complete guide to teatime brewing and essentials, pg. 101
  • Keep your house toasty (and your wallet fat) with heat-saving habits and tools, pg. 111


  • The right sneaker for your foot, no matter the workout, pg. 117


  • Why do knuckles crack? This and 11 other bodily mysteries, solved, pg. 133

The Organizer

  • Save yourself from last-minute shopping trips by stocking up on easy-to-store gifts, pg. 145


  • Shopping List/Recipe Index, pg. 202
  • Bird of Paradise, pg. 205
  • One roast chicken, one pan, six variations, infinite pleasure.
  • Taste Test, pg. 217
  • For sipping on ski slopes or in snowy backyards, the six best hot cocoas, which will warm you from head to toe.

In Every Issue

  • Why Not?, pg. 10
  • Contributors, pg. 22
  • Editor’s Note, pg. 26
  • Credits, pg. 222
  • Real Simple to Go, pg. 226