Do More with Less and Win a Windows 7 Phone

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Update: We have a winner. Samantha from NorCal. Congrats!

The holidays are here and what should be a nice relaxing “holiday” can easily turn into a very stressful unrelaxing time for the host. Knowing this, we have assembled some tips to help make your holiday entertaining a bit less stressful (and economical)! Oh yeah, and we are going to give away a Windows 7 Phone to a lucky commenter, all you need to do is tell us how you do more with less in the comments below.

As an early Holiday Gift to our readers we are giving away a brand new Windows 7 Phone.

So how can you do more with when planning a holiday party?

One word: PUNCH!

Why punch you ask? We love punch for many reasons, lets name a few.

1. Prep time is minimal.
2. You can make a punch with a little as 3 or 4 ingredients.
3. Punches are lower in alcohol that other cocktails, so you can stretch your entertaining dollar and worry less about drunk guests.
4. Your guests can serve themselves.
5. It is easy to make more when you are running low.
6. A bowl full of punch is a great center piece for a table full of party goodies.
7. Punches are highly customizable.

So how easy is a punch to make? Simple as one, two, three: One of our favorite recipes combines whiskey, simple syrup, black tea and fresh fruit (lemons, limes and oranges). That’s it. Dead simple. For a small party a large 1.75 liter should be plenty of booze (buy in bulk and save) . Simply add the ingredients into a punch bowl and you are good to go. We like to make an ice block to cool the whole mixture. These are easy to make, just fill a large Tupperware container with water and freeze. How easy is that.

When you are ready to make you punch, just dip the Tupperware in warm water and the ice block will slip right out. Oh yeah, make sure you add the ice block to the punch bowl BEFORE the other ingredients otherwise you may have a mess on your hands, and that is not easy or fun to clean up, plus you risk wasting booze.

Once your punch is assembled, simply put out some punch cups and ice and let your guests serve themselves. How easy is that? If you really want to get fancy, put out some sparking water or soda so your guests can customize their libations. During the party all you need to do is add more booze, tea or ice as the bowl get low.

So how do you do more with less? Let us know in the comments below and we could be sending you a Windows 7 phone! To be eligible to win, your comments must be entered by November 29, 2010.

Disclosure: This giveaway is brought to you by the new Windows Phone 7. Learn more about Windows Phone online [www.windowsphone.com] and see it in person at local T-Mobile stores today. For official rules, click here.

This contest is now closed.

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  • cosmicooze

    since first baby has arrived I guilt-free buy pre-packaged food to save prep time. A smart phone would help me juggel work and home but we haven’t been able to afford one yet.
    Thanks!

  • Helen

    We are doing more with less this year for Christmas by capitalizing on our church’s free toy trade! We all have toys sitting around (used and new) that get ignored – parents get together to trade and viola! Free Christmas!

  • Brook

    We make Wasal Bowl every Christmas. Nice warm drink for adults and kids.
    on stove top fill pot with apple cidar, black tea bags, orange slices, and cinamon sticks. let simmer on stove all day. have a bottle of rum on side for adults…..enjoy

  • ralphevelyn

    I buy a large vodka and infuse it with different flavors. It opens up new options, and makes great gifts!

  • MelissaCollins

    We buy chicken in bulk and make meals and freeze them. Dinner is so much easier and cheaper by just grabbing a frozen meal and preparing it within 10 minutes. The chicken is super cheap as well!

  • LaniMurphy

    We love shopping Costco for liquor…always a great deal with little cash.

    • drinkoftheweek

      @LaniMurphy We do as well. Great prices at Costco

  • Sstran

    I love the idea of bulk buying alcohol and doing punch. I make a variation of jungle juice with vodka, schnapps and lots of nectar and fruit

  • Amber

    We always host a big Christmas party, and this year my preschoolers are in charge of decorating. It won’t look like how I’d do it, but it saves me time and everyone will probably even like it more!

  • Pingback: Windows 7 Phone Contest — Do more with Less | eContests

  • deleolowoyo

    The shopping warehouses are great for buying more for less

  • stargirlheuser

    Buy what you can in bulk! Saves time and money!

  • drea8685

    I go to wholesale clubs in order to do more with less..I buy in bulk at these places and it really helps..I also use coupons towards my food which again helps do more with less..all these things really do add up , i would advise anyone looking 2 save to do it

    drea8685@yahoo.com

  • dmetd42

    I sub beans in for protein in recipes- does more for my wallet and my waistline. dumei42 gmail com

  • BeautyAlchemist

    Cooking at home can save ,money and I have a nice store of recipes that are good but not time consuming to prepare with a small ingredient list.For the holidays this comes in even more handy. and I supplement with pre done items if I find a deal to make it even easier.

  • bowpay

    My wife and I cut coupons then build a binder full of coupons which we “stack” and walk out of the store with a lot of free stuff. Very fun but very tedious at times. Gives us more with little money. :)

  • HuRa

    Make an honest list of wants vs needs.
    Look at the needs list and give it the same test again.

    You’ll find what you need to be happy is less than you think.

  • HuRa

    Make an honest list of wants vs needs.
    Look at the needs list and give it the same test again.

    You’ll find what you need to be happy is less than you think.

  • fredov

    For drinks, a good way to get everyone involved is to supply a simple liquor or two like gin and/or vodka and have everyone bring the mixers. For eats, those lil’ smokies get made fun of a lot but never last.

  • tommmckee

    Since I am 25 years clean and all my friends are in recovery, my punch is simple 1 liter of Lemon Lime pop and 1 bottle of Cranberry Juice mixed well and the party is on

  • KeithOtipoby

    I am making my own chicken stock to use for Thanksgiving from a chicken carcass left over from dinner tonight

  • Merlin

    I try to do more with less, by consolidating shopping trips which saves me time and gas, keeping vigilant of bonafide sales, and entertaining more at home whenever possible.

  • setiabud

    Using Windows Media Center is certainly a “Do More With Less” thing. record all your favorite TV shows and watch it at any convenient on your TV (or TVs if you have an extender). No need to pay for DVR fee!

  • Stevelev17

    We moved into a more efficient house. So far the utility bills are half as much. When we moved we consolidated some services and are eliminating others such as cable TV. At first it was tough but so far it has worked well. Lastly, after moving about 10 miles we are a little out of our comfort zone and are finding ourselves take time to reevaluate old habits of eating out and binge buying at the grocery store. M

  • chadwickNnola

    i do more by less by just chillin out

  • chadwickNnola

    i do more by less by just chillin out

    • drinkoftheweek

      @chadwickNnola Keep it real!

  • Sstran

    i make sentimental gifts like making collages of me and whoever i am giving it to, cost-efficient and a caring gift

  • Amber

    We take advantage of the free tickets the library has for local museums, acquariums, playlands, etc. Some of those entry fees are crazy – we go for free!

  • LarsBoeNielsen

    Using my Smartphone, I really enjoy being able to send voice clips via Messenger, rather than having to type emails or SMS on the go. It’s fast easy and require no effort.

  • techSage

    I do more with less by not buying things I don’t need or can get cheaper another way; i.e. I don’t buy songs on iTunes.

  • deleolowoyo

    We hardly drink, but one way we do more with less is making our own drinks, along with a nice dinner at home, versus paying 300% more at a restaurant.

  • EmilyThornton

    My boyfriend and I ONLY go on dates from Groupon, Scoutmob, etc. The deals usually exclude alcohol, but if we get 50% off our food, the alcohol tab doesn’t seem quite so high :)

  • AEmery4444

    We have potluck parties. Everyone brings something. Usually it is a theme (love me a theme party) so all of the flavors go really well together. People take the plates they brought home too so less prep and clean up too!

  • Whimzy_Mountain_Gal

    Sticking with the drink theme, I save money during the holidays by making big batches of instant Russian Tea and giving that as gifts. We love it at home too!

    • drinkoftheweek

      @Whimzy_Mountain_Gal Great tip!

  • Sstran

    i love making spiced cider, its simple to make and its always a great crowd pleaser during the holidays

  • Amber

    Turns out I can do more with less just by letting people help! I don’t have to be in charge of the ENTIRE menu for both the Thanksgiving AND Christmas dinners. : )

  • Yogi76

    I stay organized with Microsoft OneNote, which helps me do more with less time.

  • Craig

    Punch is a terrific idea, but in my experience a punch bowl ends up causing a mess. Maybe my friends are slobs? Anyway, my more-with-less suggestion is to serve only a variety of different hard liquors rather than mixed drinks. I find this encourages sampling and careful drinking, rather than overindulgence.

  • Whimzy_Mountain_Gal

    My do more with less for today has to do with the juice from the fruit cocktail we use in our fruit salad. I drain it into a measuring cup and use it in punch for the kids on holidays.

  • Sstran

    my mom always cooked with me. it made me appreciate home cooked food more and make my food healthier

  • Yogi76

    By using Quick Steps in Microsoft Outlook, I do more and do it quicker.

  • Amber

    We ONLY eat out as a rare special treat. It actually usually takes less time to prepare a meal at home than it would to take three kids to a restaurant, and there is no doubt it saves money. Plus family dinners are awesome.

  • deleolowoyo

    Egg nog is sounding really great righ tnow. getting in the festive mood

  • Sstran

    I love using chicken broth to take shortcuts during the holidays and food. Its inexpensive and adds tons of flavor to any dish

  • Amber

    I just found a tutorial for homemade felted dryer balls, something I’ve never heard of before. I plan on using a holey sweater for the yarn, and they cut down on drying time (i.e. electricity)!

  • deleolowoyo

    Calendars are a huge help. And the Outlook Quickstep is a great shortcut tool that helps me quickly create some of my common tasks, appointments, and emails while on the go. The win phone 7 will be a great mobile tool to aid in this.

  • Austinkir

    Simple is where it’s at. Substituting chicken broth for water adds a “punch”.

  • Whimzy_Mountain_Gal

    here’s my tip of the day for doing more with less. At Halloween I become the switch witch and trade my kid a cheap toy for all of her chocolate. Then I use it to make cookies, brownies and hot chocolate for months. More chocolate to cook with and less sugar coma and cavities for her.

  • Brody

    I like to eat at home as often as possible so that I can get more out of my food budget.

  • Yogi76

    I’ll be able to get more done with less by consolidating my devices when I get a Windows Phone.

  • Maureen

    I have been finding recipes that are easy and quick and use basic ingredients that I have on hand.

  • Schmidty

    I do more for much less by hitting the garage sales and thrift stores for much of the basics, and yep, using coupons and shopping online steals and deals.

  • Brody

    I make homemade Christmas cards for my family every holiday season. It allows me to give them all better presents.

  • purplelover04

    i do more with less when i use coupons they help so much and it hard sometime. But it help when u use then with a store sale and u cant save so much money it makes me so help when i do more for less.

  • Amber

    ????The ultimate “do more with less” for our young family: nursing the babies! How often is the best thing you can give your baby completely free?

  • Yogi76

    I get more with less by doing comparison shopping using Bing.

  • deleolowoyo

    I’m all about doing more with less by using free tools such as the Google calendar to organize my day, week, month, year…need I go on!!!

  • Whimzy_Mountain_Gal

    I keep all the magnetic business cards and calendars I get in the mail or at trade shows. I tape my metric conversions on some of them, recipes I use a lot on some, and pictures I love to see. Then I put them on the fridge!

  • AEmery4444

    My husband and I just moved and so we are staying with family with our “house” in storage. We have really learned to do more with less stuff. We’ve found we probably don’t need most of the stuff we have either!

  • Brody

    I ditched my cable bill in favor a higher speed internet connection and a Netflix membership so that my family and I could get more entertainment for less money.

  • HeatherD

    My husband and I plan our dinner meals very carefully, so we can use the leftovers for lunch. I also do alot of crockpot cooking. There are usually minimal ingredients and dinner is done when I get home. Less time in the kitchen, more time with my husband and toddler son.

    joshandheather714(at)yahoo(dot)com

  • deleolowoyo

    I do more with less by using awesome phone apps. There are many useful, fun, and creative apps out there that help make life a little bit easier to manage.

  • Yogi76

    I get more done by using the Microsoft Outlook junk filters to see less spam.

  • annapick

    Menu planning, coupon clipping, and bargain hunting!! Thanks!

  • Brody

    I try to buy shelf stable food and other groceries in bulk so that I can save money and not have to make as many trips to the grocery store, which also saves me time.

  • Yogi76

    I get my screen more organized with less hassle using Windows 7’s Snaps feature.

  • Meena

    I keep everything organized so that when I need something I know exactly where it is.

  • Whimzy_Mountain_Gal

    I make photo and recipe books online so they are ready for a two for one sale. Then I follow them on Facebook or Twitter and get email updates so I never miss one. I got a 3 for one last time!

  • deleolowoyo

    Doing more with less means keeping your cars as long as possible especially when they are paid off.

  • Malky

    One example of me doing more with less is carpooling with friends to school (when I don’t take the train). Being college students, we’ll save all the money we can and it’s so convenient that I have a group of friends that all live pretty close! It’s fun to see each other in the mornings, ha and eat breakfast on the go. It’d be so awesome to win!

  • Brody

    I use multiprotocol IM clients that support social networks and email so that I can check all of my accounts at the same time. More done, less time spent.

  • Sstran

    i love giving out coupons as presents. Like ill watch your kids for an hour or help you clean your house. they are cheap and effective. so everyone is happy

  • Whimzy_Mountain_Gal

    I recycled the cotton batting from an old quilt and am using it for the snow in my Christmas village display this year.

  • Malky

    This might be a little too simple, but I do more with less by always having my laptop with me. Nowadays, since I’m in college, it seems like everything is being moved online, from turning essays in to math homework. It definitely helps me do more when I have free time and I have less stuff to carry around!

  • Jyoken

    Egg Nog! It’s the only time off year you can get it. Just add a little cognac and your good to go.

  • lnghairedgrl

    My friends and I like to go out so now, instead of waiting until we get there and running a $200+ tab, we get a couple bottles and get started at home! Don’t worry, we always have our DD!!

  • Yogi76

    I do more with less redundancy by syncing my files using Windows Live Mesh.

  • Yogi76

    I do more with less redundancy by syncing my files using Windows Live Mesh.

  • Whimzy_Mountain_Gal

    I make my chicken stock when I have leftover bones from roast chicken then freeze it in ice cube trays to save time when cooking later.

  • Brody

    I try to consolidate all of my errands into one trip to town so that I don’t use as much gas.

  • Malky

    One example of me doing more with less is simply turning off and unplugging electronics and appliances. Sometimes people forget and it adds up to the costs. As time goes by, spending a few little seconds on turning appliances off can really make a difference and save more money, more money to spend on stuff I want! I only turn things on when I need to!

  • kkgray

    I do more with less by planning ahead of time as much as possible

  • Brody

    I do my college homework while I’m at my job during slow times, that way I have more free time at home.

  • Sstran

    m and ms are probably my favorite more with less candy. i use them to decorate cakes, i use them in counting games with kids, and they just taste good

  • deleolowoyo

    Doing more with less sometimes means reusing grocery bags, or buying the recyclable types and using those. Saves the environment and saves the grocery stores money, which in turn saves you money.

  • Whimzy_Mountain_Gal

    I take my used coffee grounds and use them in the garden.

  • Malky

    One way we do more with less is with leftovers. Especially during Thanksgiving time. An example would be using ham for lunch sandwiches and using the leftover turkey for quesadillas or my favorite turkey and tortilla soup!

  • http://astr0x.com astroX

    I do more with less when I shop on Black Friday for presents I will give on Christmas!

  • http://www.examiner.com/cigar-in-tampa-bay/tom-ufer TomUfer

    Just this week my family went to Disney for free by using the “Give a Day, Get a Day” voucher we received from doing volunteer work. We stretched out the stay by attending a Hilton time share presentation and got a deep discount on a four day/three night stay at a great resort. We also stretch our food dollars by always using coupons at the supermarket or dining at casual restaurants.

  • Brody

    I use a combination shampoo and body wash to make both showering and grocery shopping easier and faster.

  • kkgray

    i do more with less by trying to stay as organized as i can

  • kkgray

    I try to prioritize things, just so that i don’t get stressed out by the small stuff

  • Brody

    I almost never buy clothes unless they’re on sale. I can stretch my clothing budget pretty far sometimes by doing this.

  • Malky

    I do more with less by combining my errands into one drive and trip so I save gas. An example would be going to the store, post office and barbershop in one trip, rather than going at different times of the week. This way, I can do more with the money I have because of the less money I have to spend on gas!

  • moe

    Changing all my regular light bulbs to eco friendly ones really saves on the electricity bill. And it helps the environment too !

  • greenlee42

    I do more with less by cooking enough to last for several meals
    greenlee 42 at yahoo dot com

  • techSage

    I do more with less by trying to win contests like this when I have spare time instead of wasting it watching TV.

  • dirtymartini

    We do more with less by looking for good deals on presents.

  • purplelover04

    i go to dollar store and buy things i need for party and everyday stuff .

  • chris22

    I do more with less time by multitasking

  • smitty24

    I do more with less by giving baked treats as presents for the holidays

  • http://astr0x.com astroX

    I used to check my email through a browser; a few months ago I started using an email client. Now I can check all my email accounts at the same time! That’s doing more with less!
    astroxweb@live.com

  • CCinLA

    When I make a big purchase I spend a lot of time looking for a good deal online

  • Whimzy_Mountain_Gal

    Whenever I make my favorite pasta salad I make sure to save the olive juice for some dirty martinis later!

  • kate33

    I make lists so that I can stay organized better

  • deleolowoyo

    Doing more with less could be decorating the christmas tree as a family. More work done in less time, and lots of family time together.