Military Families: New Articles for February

The latest batch of great articles for military families just went up.  Here’s what you’ll find this month:

  • Information on how to transfer military education benefits. If the servicemember can’t use them, it’s now possible to transfer them to the spouse, a child, several children, or any combination. But restrictions apply, and it’s important to know what they are.
  • Creative ways military families can reduce their tax bills. There are a lot of programs that aren’t available to civilians. You’ll learn about the most important ones here, including a situation where you can actually end up paying less tax by declaring more income.
  • Strategies to steer clear of the biggest financial pitfalls many military families fall into, from having to live on one income (because it’s so hard for spouses to find and keep work) and relocation expenses, to insanely expensive childcare and predatory lenders.
  • Advice on how to weigh your options when you’re faced with a “should-I-reenlist-or-should-I-get-out?” decision. There are plenty of advantages and disadvantages to both civilian and military life. We’ll help you make the choice that’s best for you and your family.
  • A guest post on the ins and outs of the Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH). What you don’t know could really hurt your chances of finding that perfect home.

We’re Looking for Great Content for Military Families

Brott, Military FatherAs the military families expert for about.com, I’m always on the lookout for organizations, programs, and practical advice and strategies that can help our military servicemembers, spouses, and kids.

If you have any suggestions, recommendations, and even guest posts, I’d love to share them with our readers. So please email me.

In the meantime, feel free to peruse the site, http://militaryfamily.about.com/

How to Know When It’s Time to Change Your Style

Whether male or female, we all tend to get stuck in fashion ruts, sometimes for a lifetime. That’s not necessarily a good thing. For better or worse, we are judged by how we look.

The fashions we choose could be the subconscious, deciding factor on whether or not we land a job or promotion that we are after. Not getting that job means not improving our income, which means having fewer options, with depression and self-esteem issues tagging along for the ride. All this because we chose the blue sweater instead of something more fashionable. Sometimes we just have to force ourselves to escape our fashion rut. Here’s how we know when it’s time:

New Relationship Status
Relationships develop their own styles. Something happens when two people come together to form one social unit. They develop a look and a sound and a fashion that is easily identifiable, even when the two are not together.
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I Know You Love Me, But I Need to Hear The Words

Dear Mr. Dad: My dad is an engineer and has always looked at the world in a very logical, no-feelings-allowed, Mr. Spock kind of way. I guess that’s just his style. The problem is that I don’t think he’s ever told me that he loves me. He’s always been a great dad and I have no doubt that he does love me. But as I get older—I’m nearly thirty—I start second-guessing myself and I really need to hear the words. I tell my kids all the time that I love them. Why won’t he tell me? Do you think he ever will?

A: Whenever I get an email like this, I’m nearly overcome with sadness. It’s tragic that your dad has never told you that he loves you. But I’m encouraged that he’s found other ways to get the point across and that you’ve gotten the non-verbal message. That still leaves your questions. Going in reverse order, yes, I think he will tell you, but it may take a little work on your part. As to why he hasn’t said those three magic words, there are quite a few explanations.

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Food, Fun, and Conversation for a Happy Family

Anne Fishel, author of Home for Dinner.
Topic:
Mixing food, fun, and conversation for a happier family and healthier kids.
Issues: Overcoming time-constraints, scheduling issues, and post-work fatigue; bringing gratitude to the table and averting complaints and conflict; the importance of conversation; getting the whole family talking, laughing, and engaging with one another—and keeping it up over time.