more about: Real Simple

Are the Rules Changing for Addressing Envelopes? Yes!

A Real Simple reader named Milea Joy posted this question on the magazine’s Facebook page:

What is the proper way to address a letter/envelope to a couple where the woman has her doctorate and the gentleman does not?

First, I love the fact that you are actually addressing an envelope, Milea. For readers who are unfamiliar with the practice, it’s something we used to do fairly often back in the Dark Ages before the Internet, involving things we called “paper” and “ink”— and requiring the use of penmanship skills we painstakingly acquired in elementary school.

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The Case of the Racist Roommate

Earlier this week, a reader named Allison posted a dilemma on Real Simple’s Facebook page that is as much about ethics as etiquette:

“I have a prejudiced roommate to be. She sublet from another roommate. How should I handle other people who want to rent rooms?…At first she didn’t want to live with any more girls, which seemed strange, but then it was African Americans. She uses the phrase “she totally jewed me,” and she does not seem to have many kind things to say about Greeks or anyone of Asian descent. Ahhh! We have sublet the rooms for May only to a bunch of Caucasians (female, much to her actual chagrin), but we have to go through the whole process again in June.”

How should Allison handle this sort of talk…and the roommate’s unwillingness to rent to “other kinds” of people?

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Are Handwritten Thank You Notes Becoming Obsolete?

Part of me can’t believe I even have the gall to ask that question. My grandmother would be turning over in her grave if she read blogs. But the other night, at a restaurant where I was sitting at a big round table with six other women—a mix of old friends and new acquaintances—the topic of thank you notes came up and …

Thank you note

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Why Do You Think I Want Your Hand-Me-Downs?

This is a question one of my friends is dying to ask her next-door neighbor. But she’s not sure how to pose it—or even whether it’s appropriate to ask—without sounding as rude as the neighbor who foisted the stuff on her. Here’s what happened:

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The Nudes Next Door

One morning a few days after we moved to a ninth floor apartment in  New York City, I walked into the kitchen to find my husband staring out a window, transfixed.

“Would you look at that?” he said, gesturing with his coffee cup toward a building directly across a courtyard. I looked over his shoulder to take a peek and saw our neighbors walking around in their eighth floor apartment wearing…nothing.

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Mural Painting, Real Simple Style

Every year New York Cares, a volunteer organization in New York City, organizes a day of service called New York Cares Day. This year, it fell on Saturday, October 23rd and our team comprised of Real Simple staffers and members of BE@T (Black Employees at Time Inc.) were out in full force to paint three murals at P.S. 346 in East New York.


I’m happy to give you a glimpse of the amazing work that our staffers did to transform these areas of the school. And also to give a big thank you to Olympic Paint and Lowe’s Home Improvement in Brooklyn who donated all the paint and painting supplies (brushes, dropcloths, stir sticks, etc.) for our project.


Here’s our team ready to begin:


New York Cares Day - Team Real Simple & BE@T


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