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New beginnings! Are you ready?

The new school year, a PCS this summer, a new job/employment, a deployment return or departure, a new or revitalized faith, a new workout routine, a wedding, a birth, a health crisis … all can be new beginnings for the military community. So how do you help yourself during new “stuff”?  

Remember the Old!

It gives us strength to remember what helped us in the past. Looking at old pictures is a great way to enjoy old friends, family times, previous assignments, etc. More important though is the support emotionally and physically we get from the routines that we created to cope with the military lifestyle.  

The new school year!

Never seemed ready for it but the date always arrived. Such a challenge for military brats > new school and new school year. Walking into a new school with no or few friends, unknown teachers, trying to avoid local social faux pas > what is the right book bag, where is my classroom, ++. Then all of the associated costs which can be budget busting: A few tips to help with that: http://www.militaryavenue.com/Articles/7+Tips+to+Rein+in+Back-to-School+Spending-43285.aspx  


Find something Fun to do with the New. New locations are best if we can find the new fun things in the area. New museums, parks, trails, golf courses, shopping malls, plus are the best things to explore! Just think, a lot of folks travel to your area just to do what is in your backyard. Find them through new neighbors, on installation resources such as MWR (includes some reduced price tickets too), online, the local chamber of commerce/tourist office and even welcome centers in your area.  

Make it the New Normal.

This is applicable to so many military family activities! We have to grab the new and make it normal for us. Fast! Because > It will probably be new again soon. Laughing out loud about a personal experience: we arrived in Florida PCS and loved it > change of wardrobe for entire family was not planned when orders for Iceland arrived 18 months later. So glad we grabbed hold of those beaches quickly.  

Flexibility is the key to success!

Family separations are the military norm but the saying good byes and welcome homes are tougher some times than just being away from a loved one. Go back to Make it the New Normal to catch up. Not easy, but certainly worth the effort to be flexible with “that new guy/gal in the house” after a long separation. Help is a phone call away with Military OneSource ((800) 342-9647) or a list of their resources.  Local resources such as the base chaplains’ office (which is totally confidential) can be best face to face.  

Tame Those Finances.

A PCS can drain funds and a new mortgage or rental agreement need to be weighed along with other new costs to live in the area. No PCS? How about a new budget to consider how your savings, spending plans are doing? Here are some ideas from the experts! http://www.militaryavenue.com/Articles/A+Recipe+for+Financial+Success-43392.aspx Communication is key! Discuss and communicate priorities!  
Stay Healthy.

Find time for yourself and the family to stay healthy. Those local attractions can provide exercise and be fun too! Work on those expenses by reducing the fast food and eat healthier at the same time. How about a new workout routine that you like! It does not need to be in a gym! Start simple with a walk around the neighborhood once a day (http://militaryblog.militaryavenue.com/search/label/Health). Change it up to keep it interesting with a bike ride or find a different location, a new trail; a friend to share it with always is a big help. The key to success is finding something you enjoy.  

Don't leave your faith at the last assignment.  Spiritual health is a key part of our family fitness measurements and finding a new worship location is one tough cookie for the military family.  But finding a new worship community can bring resources to your plate and even provide new beginnings!

Some other helpful links for a new beginning!

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Staying Fit from the MilitaryAvenue Blog.



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Dale Kissinger, ie. “Col K” is a co-founder of MilitaryAvenue.com and retired Air Force pilot who served with the best of the military community from the Army, Navy, Marines, Coast Guard and Air Force. He flew combat rescue and special operations helicopters, fixed wing trainers, special operations airlift and retired while flying the C-17 as the Vice Wing Commander of the 62nd Airlift Wing at McChord AFB. He served his country during conflicts in Bosnia, Iraq, Kosovo and Afghanistan.

A member of a proud military family that created MilitaryAvenue.com to support the military members and their families, he enjoys the continued military ties associated with MilitaryAvenue’s blog, “Our Letters to You: A Military Family Blog.” He has contributed numerous articles on current events; veteran support issues; military spouse and veteran employment; and military community outreach from corporate America. Dale is also a frequent participant with the DoD Blogger Roundtable at DoDLive.

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