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Real Simple

When I first met Real Simple, I was still exclusive with Vogue. I didn't understand Real Simple. Why were the articles so short? Why was there so much about organizing and cooking? Their fashion sections were brief and so... simple. I bought a few because friends of mine were subscribers, anticipating the arrival of each month's edition.

Then the babies were born. Vogue started stacking up on my nightstand. Some editions still sit in my magazine rack wrapped in plastic, never even cracked open. I started looking for Real Simple at the check stands near the end of each month.

It started slow. I bought them each month and absent-mindedly flipped through the pages, nodding in agreement with a nifty organizing tip or jotting down the name of a cute item of clothing. Around the time the babies were 6-months old, I started really paying attention to Real Simple's recipes. The variety is fantastic. Who knew a fritatta could be such a fabulous one-dish meal? Or that making your own salad dressing could be so easy? And popovers... delicious fluffy bites of goodness.

Easy, 20-minute meals with fresh ingredients and heavenly flavors. My dad bought me a year-long subscription as a gift. I was hooked. I started a recipe book for our family, something that can travel with me and that organizes (organizing-- thank you, Real Simple) my recipes so I can easily access them. Around half of the recipes are from Real Simple.

Picture courtesy of Real Simple at Google+
The current edition, August 2012, features "16 marvelous 20-minute meals." I've got my nifty Board Dudes week calendar ready to start plotting our meals for the week: peanut noodles with edamame, crab rolls, pasta with zucchini, tomatoes, bacon, and Feta; even a great section on snacks: cherry tomatoes with goat cheese, dark chocolate and nut clusters, bagel with ricotta and strawberries... Oh, the possibilities!

The very thing that originally turned me off to Real Simple-- simplicity-- is now the thing I love about it. How simple to work in delicious ways for my family to try new flavors. How simple to pair a wild pair of flats with a well-fitting pair of jeans. Who knew H&M had so many affordable and stylish options? (I can tell you the number of times I have ventured into that store with a three-year old and one-year old twins in tow: zero.) And magazine articles don't have to consist of long stories of an amazing photographer vacationing with amazing friends (who happen to be models and entrepreneurs) in amazing places... Magazine articles can be about conversations that changed your life or simple, accessible ways to simplify-- and improve-- your life.

And I have time to read the magazine. I can read about boosting my memory while I sit in the playroom with my boys or about how to snack better while my husband puts our preschooler to bed (sitting in a dim room on the couch with a Lindt dark chocolate square in hand-- should have read that article earlier).

Picture courtesy of
One twin book, Ready or Not... Here We Come! The Real Experts' Cannot-Live-Without Guide to the First Year with Twins by Elizabeth Lyons (the first edition), says that Real Simple is a must-have for twin moms. I would say that Real Simple is a must-have for twin moms, busy moms, moms of any sort.

As for Vogue... I think I still get Vogue. I'm not really sure, though. I think Vogue will come back into my life when I could possibly leave the house in heels or dry clean only shirts. For now, I'm sticking with a magazine that mirrors my interests. This month's edition features a section entirely on flats. I'm in.


A said…
makes a note, must go buy real simple.

makes another not, must update blog

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