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Relaxation-at-Home newsletter, Issue #028 -- Busy Holiday Season - Reduce Stress
October 23, 2009

Are you ready for Halloween? With Canadian Thanksgiving behind us and American Thanksgiving in a month or so, it's the perfect time to enjoy our fall fruits and vegetables like pumpkins and yams. The busy holiday season is about to start, so this newsletter will focus on ways to help you reduce holiday stress in the kitchen this year.

You'll also find a suggestion for a personal project that may interest you.

Comfort Food

You will probably be cooking a large meal for friends and family over the holidays, and such preparation is extremely stressful. You have to make enough for everyone, it must taste good without being too spicy for your guests who have weak stomachs or prefer plain food, and you have to manage to get it all ready at the same time.

The best way to approach these meals is to sit down with a pen and paper. Making lists may seem unnecessary, but I highly recommend that you take the time to do it, as some important details may surface and it will improve the entire meal preparation and holiday experience.

  1. Write down your guest list and consider possible last-minute additions (will your son bring a girlfriend? what about the neighbor?). Figure out how many people you have to feed and plan for a couple of additional people. Better to have too much than not enough!
  2. Now plan your meal down to every detail. Make sure to consider food allergies if applicable:

    • What will you offer your guests before the meal (drinks, appetizers, etc.)
    • What will the main course include (meat, vegetables, salad, rice, potatoes, salad dressing, gravy, etc.)
    • What will you serve for dessert (cheese, fruit, cake, whipped cream, ice cream, etc.)
    • What will you serve for drinks during and after the meal (juice, pop, wine, water, beer, coffee, tea, etc.)
  3. Now that you have a meal plan, sit down with your recipe books and create a list of ingredients for the meal. Place post-it notes on the recipes you want to use to make it easier to find the recipes again. While looking at the recipe books, write down how long each recipe takes to cook and the temperature the oven will need to be at. You may have to cook dessert or vegetables ahead of time if they can't be in the oven with your meat because of temperature and/or space issues.
  4. Go through your pantry with your ingredient list and remove any items that you already have at home. On your grocery list, divide the ingredients into groups to make it easier to find them in the store. For example, place all frozen items together, all fruit and vegetables together, all meat together, etc. Go shopping at least a day early to avoid the crowds, and you may need to purchase items like frozen turkey a few days earlier to give it a chance to thaw before starting to cook it.
  5. Come up with a cooking schedule for the big day. Knowing exactly how long each item takes to cook, which pot will be used for what and which things can be prepared ahead of time will make the entire experience a lot less stressful.
  6. Now think of the location where the meal will be served and come up with a list of supplies that you will need. Think about tables, chairs, place-mats, bowls, plates, forks, knifes, spoons, wine glasses, water glasses, coffee mugs, center piece, napkins, ice, etc. If you don't have enough, ask a friend or family member to bring some.

Don't forget to ask your husband/wife and children to help if they want. Potatoes and carrots can be peeled and chopped ahead of time and dessert can often be made the day before and reheated later if needed.

You may want to use your slow cooker or borrow one from a friend of family member if you won't have enough elements on the stove or enough room in the oven.

Need recipes? Try these:

Loaded mashed potatoes

Roast beef recipes

Pumpkin pie and pumpkin bread recipes

Personal Project

With the economy starting to recover... slowly... you and your family may have thought about new ways to make money. You may have considered making money online, but there are so many scams out there, it's hard to know if it's legit or not.

I'd like to share a solution that I've personally been using for over 3 years. It can be perfect for you too if you're looking for:

  • A flexible job that can be done anytime from home (or anywhere) without a schedule, bosses, or even customers
  • A creative outlet for your talents/skills/passion, something that is different from your day-to-day responsibilities to kids, spouse and your home
  • An uncomplicated way to generate income successfully, without huge entry or overhead costs
  • Work that allows you to "be there" for your kids
  • And eventually, an opportunity to stay at home, as children enter school or leave for post-secondary education or jobs.

And, it's 100% risk free.

This personal project opportunity is the reason why you are reading this newsletter today. It's a way for you to build a great-looking website without having to know anything about programming or design.

I'm not saying that you will be rich overnight.

I'm not saying that money will fall from the sky.

What I'm saying is, like me, you too can start your own home-based business and make money with a website, without any technical skills.

I can even hold your hand and help you along the process. You know my email address... You can contact me anytime with questions about SBI and I'd be glad to help and tell you more about it. I can even help you build your site and provide you with free advice and information.

A friend recommended SBI to me years ago, and I'm sure glad I took the jump. I now have 3 websites with SBI, and the residual income they provide keeps increasing.

For a limited time, SBI is offer a $100 Halloween special that will expire at 11:59pm on Oct 31. Click here for more information:

Special SiteSell Promotion

More on working from home with SBI!

Book of the Month

Don't forget to check out my my two book of the month recommendations (one fiction and one non-fiction) right here:

Book of the Month for October 2009

Visit the previous link and you'll be able to download Dr. Joe Vitale's latest book - ATTRACT MONEY NOW - for FREE.

Current Promotion from LUSH Cosmetics

If you're a big LUSH fan, visit this page and look at the right column to see the latest coupon code that gives you 10% off wrapped gifts from LUSH if you order before 11:59pm on November 1, 2009.

Coming Up...

Stay posted and come back to visit Relaxation at Home.

That's it for this month and you'll get more relaxation tips from me around mid-November.

Relax and enjoy the last bit of nice fall weather!!

Caroline Begin

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