Yunhee KimShop Smart
Sort groceries before you get home. At the market, ask the bagger to put all the perishables in one bag, the snacks in another, the canned goods in a third. You can help the process along by loading like foods together on the conveyor belt. At home, unloading will go far more quickly and be easier to delegate. (See 6 Ways to Save on Groceries)
Prep meat and fish. The few minutes it takes to trim or pound meat can be sandwiched in between the flipping of the breakfast pancakes or afternoon calls to doctors and plumbers. Come suppertime, just pull your pan-ready fillets from the plastic bag and cook.
Meat can sit in an oil-based marinade for about 24 hours in the refrigerator, so you can set up the next day's dinner before hitting the sack; fish, with its more delicate flesh, should sit for no more than 4 to 6 hours, so this is something you might do at lunchtime. Place the meat or fish and the marinade in a resealable plastic bag, pop it into the refrigerator,
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Yunhee KimShop SmartRead More »from Efficient Dinner-Prep Tips
Marcus Nilsson Packed with vitamins A and C, this dinnertime favorite begins its peak season now. Here's how to make the most of it
How to Choose: Look for heads of broccoli that have firm stalks and tight, dark green clusters of buds. Yellowing florets and woody stalks with holes at the base are signs that a head is past its prime.
How to Store: Refrigerate unwashed broccoli in a plastic bag in the vegetable drawer.
Shelf Life: Broccoli will stay fresh for up to five days.
How to Use It
- Broccoli Almondine: Toss steamed broccoli with butter and fresh lemon juice; sprinkle with toasted sliced almonds.
- Broccoli Dip: Puree steamed broccoli with sour cream and grated Parmesan. Serve with pretzels and raw vegetables for dipping.
- Broccoli Salad: Toss cooled steamed broccoli with chickpeas, halved grape tomatoes, crumbled Feta, olive oil, and red wine vinegar.
- Broccoli Soup: Saute chopped onion in olive oil. Add broccoli and enough chicken broth to cover and cook until tender.
Rick Lew1. AudiogramRead More »from 5 medical tests every woman should have
Why You Need It: To find out if you are one of the more than 28 million Americans with measurable hearing loss -- and, if so, to take steps to keep it from worsening.
When and How Often: Schedule an audiogram if you have trouble making out what people are saying, hear ringing in your ears, feel a plugged sensation, or have a family history of hearing loss. Otosclerosis, a genetic disorder that prompts abnormal growth of the bone of the middle ear, is more prevalent in women and often surfaces when a woman is pregnant or between 15 and 30.
What to Expect: You wear headphones while a licensed audiologist or ear, nose, and throat doctor has you listen to sounds. "We check for your ability to discriminate between tones of different frequencies," says David Fabry, Ph.D., a former president of the American Academy of Audiology.
What the Results Mean: If your audiogram is normal, you'll come back every two to five years for a follow-up test. If your audiogram shows you have
Adam Howling Consider This:Read More »from How to negotiate discounts on medical bills
To maintain cash flow, "many doctors will knock 5 or 10 percent off if you pay up front," says health-care consultant Rocky Fredrickson. Uninsured patients can get even bigger discounts ("50 percent or more," says gastroenterologist Martin Bashir) for procedures that doctors and dentists usually bill to health plans, because medical practitioners are used to getting less than full price from insurance companies. "The discounted rate doctors give a patient is still far better than what an insurance company pays," Bashir says.
Try This: Find out what doctors and dentists typically bill for services and how much insurers pay at www.vimo.com. Negotiate the bill before your procedure. Offer to pay up front in exchange for a discount.
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Francesco Lagnese Three tips to choosing a carve-worthy pumpkinRead More »from How to Select a Pumpkin to Carve
When choosing a pumpkin for carving do, be sure to:
Examine the rind.
It should be firm, uniform in color, and free of cuts, bruises, and blemishes.
Make sure that the stem doesn't look brown and dry.
And don't use the stem as a handle, since even a healthy one can break off. Pick up a pumpkin by its base instead.
Give the pumpkin a knock. A thumping sound means the pumpkin is solid, with no internal defects, rot, or soft spots.
Essentials for Hosting a Pumpkin-Carving Party
Make Centerpieces from Pumpkins
Choose the Right Thanksgiving Turkey
- A green clown wig + a schoolgirl outfit = Broccoli Spears Cheryl Zibisky
- A plastic laundry basket with holes cut out for legs + white balloons + a shower cap = Bathing Beauty
- A white dress + a pipe-cleaner halo + leaves in her hair and "dirt" on her face = Fallen Angel
- Black clothes + yellow electrical tape down his torso + toy cars + Velcro = Highway
- A pig nose + a blanket = Pig in a Blanket
- A blue T-shirt + cotton balls + tape + a water gun = Partly Cloudy With a Chance of Rain
- A polo shirt + khakis (or madras shorts) + a name tag = Jay Crew
- A clear umbrella (preferably dome- shaped) + party streamers or metallic ribbons = Jellyfish
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Essentials for Hosting a Pumpkin-Carving Party
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Jeff McNamaraColleen and Michael Cooney's second bedroom had always been primarily a home office and a stowaway zone for everything from golf clubs to books and files. When the couple learned they were expecting their first baby, they realized that their space was about to get even tighter. Although there was no way to keep the extra bed in the room (which measures 11 feet 9 inches by 12 feet 9 inches), the Cooneys did end up with a calm, airy space for doing business and bringing up baby.Read More »from Big Solutions for a Small Nursery/Home Office
Unify and divide. An energetic yet soothing color enlivens and enlarges the room. The contrast between the white molding and the blue walls makes the window seem larger, too. Keeping the office on one side and the nursery on the other enables them to coexist peacefully in tight quarters. With less clutter (and no double bed crammed into a corner), each side has room to spread out a little.
Always look under the bed. No need to let the space beneath the crib go to waste. It's the perfect spot to
Antonis AchilleosThese three key steps will get you on your way to making order in your home using basic everyday items:Read More »from 3 Clutter-Busting Concepts
Enough storage space is, of course, the Holy Grail of any household. But solutions to the problem are probably littering your closets and cupboards right now. Use monochromatic boxes, wooden crates, berry baskets, and empty jars to stash anything from mementos to old files, paper clips to dried spices. (See Space-Saving Tricks)
Transform stray containers or collectibles into a decorative tableau by clustering like objects. Consistency produces a neater look than a random assembly does -- and while one or two may look arbitrary, a group looks like art.
Although your lidless sugar bowl and your wobbly chair no longer serve their original purposes, they're far from useless. You can eke a second life out of idle treasures by assigning them new functions -- and, in so doing, add style to the surfaces they grace.
Clutter-Busting Secrets of
Litter box: The ripeness of Snowball's litter box depends on the litter as well as on her diet, allergies, or infections, and whether the box is cleaned daily.
Fur: Dirty coats breed odor-causing bacteria. "If we went months between baths, we'd stink," says Robert Krapfl, a veterinarian in Omaha, Nebraska.
Accidents: Fluids spread as they seep into carpet padding and create nasty smells.
Litter box: Clay-based litter that clumps when wet, such as Scoop Away Plus Crystals ($10 to $13 for a 25-pound box, at supermarkets) absorbs odors.
Fur: Brushing and bathing can prevent the buildup of bacteria. Ask your vet about shampoos.
Accidents: Spray Nature's Miracle Stain & Odor Remover (about $8 at pet stores) on an area wider than the spot (and under it, if possible).
Written by Marla Garfield
Conquer Household Odors
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Rather than randomly plucking items from shelves (and forgetting the things youDavid Princereally need in the process), make yourself an all-inclusive shopping list, grouped by the aisles of your grocery store. Creating the list should take just one trip to the market (and no more than 45 minutes). Better still, stored on your computer and posted on the refrigerator each week, it will be the last one you'll ever have to make.Read More »from Organize Your Grocery Shopping Trips
1. Before you go to the supermarket, jot down your grocery list. Add to it all the items you stock your shelves with that you don't need to buy this time.
2. Take the list to the store. As you shop, write down the aisle number next to each item on the list.
3. When you get home, type up the list according to the aisle numbers. Print out several copies.
4. Stick a copy of the list on your refrigerator.
Download a Sample Shopping List
1. Superglue mini magnets (available at stationery stores) to a pen and a small stapler and keep