See what was in this issue of Real Simple.

By Real Simple
Updated October 17, 2005
Sang An

The Choice Is Yours, pg. 43
Too many options can make you freeze up. Here's how to narrow them down and pick a puppy, a steak, a snack, party music, and more.

Time To Give Thanks, pg. 254
Things to be grateful for: Thanksgiving recipes, tips, and make-ahead strategies that let the host celebrate as heartily as the guests.

Living History, pg. 264
When an heirloom passes from one generation to the next, it carries with it the life and times of the giver. Six women share the stories of their family treasures.

Pop Goes the Table, pg. 276
Give your party a good dressing-down; 17 fresh alternatives to traditional decorating that make fun the centerpiece.

Slow Down, pg. 286
Speeding through life can affect your memory, your health, and your sanity. Experts explain why it's better to be a tortoise than a hare.

25 Ways To Save During the Holidays, pg. 292
By saving a little here and a lot there, you can make your holidays a richer experience. After all, why spend where you don't have to?

No-Hassle Holiday 101, pg. 307
How to choose the turkey, make the gravy, fake Mom's stuffing, and clean up afterward without getting lost in all the details.

The Guide


  • Chic all-weather boots, pg. 95
  • Luxurious cashmere at every price, pg. 103
  • One flattering skirt goes casual to dressy, with stops in between, pg. 109
  • Learn more about the ones you love with the right questions, pg. 119
  • Buy or rent? How to decide, pg. 135
  • Common air-travel frustrations and what you can do about them, pg. 143
  • Fast and easy holiday cards, pg. 155
  • Mixing bowls for how you cook, pg. 167
  • Alligators in the toilet? Household myths and mysteries explained, pg. 175
  • Get a leg up: four lunges to tighten your derriere, pg. 189
  • Make sure your health insurance meets your needs, pg. 197
  • The sugar-substitute lowdown, pg. 207
  • Eight great liquid hand soaps, pg. 217
  • The best mascaras by lash type, pg. 225
  • Masks that make quick work of 10 skin and hair problems, pg. 231

Simple Solutions

The Organized Life, pg. 63
Turn an ordinary photo display into a gallery with a kit that's as easy as 1-2-3.

New Uses for Old Things, pg. 64
Baking soda polishes silver; a brooch makes boxy shorts fitted.

Modern Manners, pg. 71
Go ahead and eat. Now.

Uncommon Knowledge, pg. 72
Find out if your favorite charity is spending your money wisely.

Products of the Month, pg. 73
A paint-storage kit for easy touch-ups; a box of cards for every holiday.

Gracious Giver, pg. 74
Make any gift more user-friendly.

Healthy Habit, pg. 76
Why you really should call in sick.

Fake It, Don't Make It, pg. 80
Spinach-Artichoke Dip


Thoughts, pg. 12

Your Words, pg. 53
How do you take the stress out of holiday entertaining?

How to Be a Better Person, pg. 85
Sometimes charity begins at home. And sometimes it begins with a to-do list.

Postscript, pg. 338
An excerpt from The Year of Magical Thinking, a new memoir by Joan Didion.

In Every Issue

  • Why Not?, pg. 16
  • Contributors, pg. 36
  • Editor’s note, pg. 40
  • Credits, pg. 363
  • Real Simple to Go, pg. 366