1001 Tips for Military Families – Tip #469


The Kindness Challenge

If you are anything like me, December is spent in a mad dash to buy things for people that I hope they will like and will show them I care.  However, I think that the Grinch had a serious “Ah Ha” moment when he discovered that Christmas isn’t from a store or in a box.  In fact, this was the inspiration for the December challenge.  Rather than the focus just on buying and wrapping, lining up and getting generally frazzled just trying to find a parking space at the mall – I will do that but… I wanted us to focus on being good to ourselves and each other too.  If you are posted somewhere without family and a lot of friends, have someone on a deployment, etc. this is a good way to refocus you too!

Click Here for our December Kindness Challenge Calendar: December Kindness Challenge

Kindness Challenge

 

Alter it to suit your family and feel free to share yours too!  Good luck and I hope your December is filled with a little more kindness and family fun and less having to follow someone with shopping bags leaving the mall to get a parking space.

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Living It Week 35 and 36


Calendar – Tip #25

When my husband was away, I was great (if I do say so myself) about keeping a calendar with everything and anything on it.  The kids even got into the habit of looking at it (I know you may be thinking that is a small accomplishment but it really isn’t in my world!).  It really helped to keep us organized and maintained some sanity.  Then my husband got home and all routines fell apart and the calendar was just taking up space on the board in the kitchen.  After two weeks of missing appointments, never knowing where everyone was, being totally out of sync and becoming really frustrated we quickly realized that it was something small that made a huge difference!

IMG_4102

I took my own advice and…

1) Asked that everyone put their things on the main kitchen calendar (it isn’t overly helpful to me to know that it is in your phone calendar…) and did the first input with everyone right there to get them started

2) Colour coded the calendar for people so that you would know which things were yours by quickly looking

3) Went over the calendar once a week at dinner (for the following week) so we all knew what was happening, who needs to be taken places, etc.

4) Printed out 3 months at a time so we also knew what things were coming up in the next months that were important too

5) Took a picture of the calendar and texted it to everyone

While I know that we are all in the era where we generally believe that technology can do it faster and more efficiently, this printed calendar in the kitchen may have actually saved the lives of my husband and children as I was teetering on the edge of insanity with the chaos!

For more information about our tips, resources and books go to: www.whileyouwereaway.org

Living It – Week 26


Make a Calendar Together – Tip #65

Our latest deployment calendar

Our latest deployment calendar

We are now past the halfway mark of this deployment and even though I have the deployment candy jar marking down time, the kids are older and I think need to see it on an actual calendar.  We have a calendar of events that happen each week but I thought it would be helpful to make a calendar of fun!  This week we made a calendar for the next three months so that we can begin to see a  see all the good things that are going to happen in between and after my husband gets back.  We do not have a specific return date so we are just highlighting the possible weeks for now.

Tips:

* Complete the calendar together (so you can also discover the events coming up that are important to them)

* Put it in a high traffic area so that everyone can reference it

* Add fun events, activities and holidays

* Mark birthdays and milestones and identify which month your family member is likely return

* Add things that you want to do at the top and reminders

For more information about our tips, books and resources go to: www.whileyouwereaway.org

More Tips for Military Families #132


On Line Calendar – Tip #132


When you aren’t together, you are missing another person being around to remind you of dates, anniversaries, birthdays, etc.  By setting up a calendar on line, each family can choose how they want to be reminders from it being on your desk top, to an alarm being sent to your phone to an email being sent out.  This way, even though you are separated, you will still be in sync with important things that are happening.

Tips:

* Do the calendar (when possible) before your deployment so that you can all put your heads together, know all about it, where it is, how to access it and what you are putting on there

* Decide as a family who will have access to the calendar

* Each family member should choose how they want to access it (cell phone, email, searching in on-line, etc.)

* Print out a copy and post it in a high traffic area

* If your deployed family member does not have access to a computer, print out a copy with a month or two in advance and add it to the package or letter you send

* Try to make updating it weekly part of your family’s routine

For more information about our blog, books or resources go to: http://www.whileyouwereaway.org

To submit a tip of your own, write to: Megan@whileyouwereaway.org