It’s happened so many times, they start to blend. That undercurrent of anxiety, of not belonging and not knowing where to go that comes with being in a new place. Social media and its influence have quickly become an integral part of our everyday existence. Intertwined with our personal and professional lives, touching both casual and close relationships, the ability to connect with people all over the world defines our identity in an ever-evolving way. For the military spouse, it has the ability to both relieve and exacerbate that feeling of anxiety brought on by every new move.
Social media has had a significant impact on the military spouse experience. It has helped to close the distance between spouses and their service members while they are deployed, between spouses and their families when they are stationed across the country or around the world, and between spouses and the life-long friends they have made at each duty station by providing a real-time mode of communication with those who are most important in their lives. But, aside from all of that, social media has helped some military spouses to overcome the barriers to career progression that have plagued this population for decades.
Nobody knows the challenges that military spouses face like other military spouses. And when it comes to business, unless you’ve had to pack up a business and move it across the country or around the world, it can be hard to even imagine the difficulties that come with relocating your business headquarters every two to three years. It was in the face of these difficulties that a small group of military spouse business owners came together and created the Military Spouse Business Association.
I have a secret. I am naturally a hot mess. I say “naturally” because, well, I fight everyday to go against my hot-mess tendencies. If you ask my husband, there isn’t anything I own that I can’t lose, or as I would say, “temporarily misplace”. Keys, jewelry, wallets, purses, ID cards…you name it. And that’s just as an adult. As a kid my mom had a replacement purchase policy with me. I lost so many umbrellas and lunch boxes at school that she made me buy them…and I was in elementary school.
Welcome to our first edition of the NextGen MilSpouse’s Blog Blotter! Our Blog Blotter is all about highlighting the biggest, baddest, mother-shut-your-mouth milspouse bloggers who are blogging all about our current month’s theme! So, if you’re a blogger and you want to be featured, watch our themes and submit a post for the BB. (That’s right, “the BB”…it’s a thing now. Go forth and use more of our inner-circle acronyms.)
This month’s theme is all about breaking away from the usual day-to-day routine and incorporating adventure into your life wherever and however you can.
Since this month’s theme is about being adventurous, I figured I’d write up an article on doing this very thing….in the kitchen. Being audacious in the kitchen stems from being motivated and inspired. The thought of cooking anything from four course meals to frying bacon can seem a bit overwhelming to even an experienced cook. So how does one stay motivated?
Here are a few tips on how to get your kitchen mojo going. Be careful though. Once you start, you may not be able to stop!
Typically, the term “adventurous” is not one of the first words I hear used to describe a career. In fact, it’s not even in the top 100. For people like Felix Baumgartner or Jeb Corliss, sure; but for the rest of us (who aren’t free falling to Earth at 843 miles per hour from a helium balloon dangling in the stratosphere or base jumping in a wingsuit through trees and mountains), definitely not.
Adventurous, yes. What I want my career to model? Not exactly.
As we sit here, post sequester, many questions remain unanswered. We don’t have all the specifics as to how this across the board cut is going to play out, but one thing is certain…we will all feel the pinch and none more so than our civil servants. 800,000 civil servants are slated for furlough come April.
When we think of the military community or military families, we’re typically thinking about ourselves. The servicemember and her family is an easy image that comes to mind. The uniform speaks for itself. It screams: Patriot! Sacrifice! The mission!
But what about our civil servants? They may not wear the uniform, but don’t doubt that their pride runs any less deep than ours. Our civil servants are true patriots, hidden behind suits and ties, khakis and sensible flats. And despite the fact that their jobs are intimately intertwined with our military community, they often seem invisible and forgotten to our larger military family.
Ahhh… it’s that time of the year again. Spring and warmer weather is just around the corner! We all know what that means…send the kids outside to play! Spring and summer also usher in the season for vacations and numerous activities taking place in the areas we live. TV commercials for resorts and cruises look like a dream come true, but with the prices, they will continue to be a nice dream for many.
Don’t let cost keep you and your family from having a fun filled summer! Vacation Milfam style! Each military branch has its own family programs division that is rich in entertainment, recreation, and travel activities for military families.
MWR/MCSS from Staycations to Vacations for Your Military Family
The Marine Corps’ MCCS and the Navy, Army, and Air Force’s MWR programs offer families and individuals a wide range of activities and support information. The sites have information about sports, fitness, base recreation activities, and resort hotels (yes please!). On top of military branch websites, each military installation has its own MCCS or MWR website with specific activities for where you are located.
For example, Camp Lejeune has Onslow Beach where you can rent a cabin on the beach for 3 nights for less than a stay on local islands like Topsail and Emerald Isle. There are also equipment rentals, like kayaks, for when you feel like taking a mini adventure down the Intracoastal Waterway. And try this on for size…the Army base in San Antonio, TX is having a Jazz and Wine event (the wine part caught my attention from the very beginning!). How cool is that?
I know there are stereotypes out there about base activities or military sponsored activities, but don’t knock ‘em til you try ‘em! You may find yourself pleasantly surprised. But if you want to have some family fun beyond base activities, you should check out the ITT office.
Make ITT Your Military Family’s First Stop Shop for Vacation Planning
ITT Tech? No! Information, Tickets and Travel offices offer discount tickets and travel for events, destinations, amusement parks, concerts, you name it! Before hitting the road for any type of trip, be sure to check with your ITT office for some money savings! Even if you don’t want to plan a big trip or take part in a group event, the staff can provide you with activities in the area for you and your family to do.
Local Fun? Two Words: Military Discount
Military often receives free admission to museums, sometimes it is just the service member though. Hey, a few bucks saved is a few bucks saved! Sometimes they’ll let family members slide. When my husband and I visited the various museums in Chicago, they let me in with free admission as well.
Just because a location doesn’t advertise a military discount, don’t be afraid to ask! We’ve received tickets at the Senior Discount price because there wasn’t a specific military discount advertised.
- Or if you are relatively close to a park, military also receives free entrance to National Parks.
- Busch Gardens, Sea World, Water Country USA, and Adventure Island offer a one-time free admission to military families as well.
- Then there are the always exciting discounted tickets and resort stays at Disney! See your ITT office for more information!
With all the money saving offers for military and countless activities offered at your local installation, I bet you and your family have no trouble keeping busy this summer… and keeping some of your hard earned money in the bank!