The Dear MilFamily Podcast

A podcast for anyone who has a family member in the military or anyone interested in the military lifestyle.

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Jul 10th, 2018 by dearmilfamily at 7:00 am
Finding friends as an adult can be difficult, but finding military friends can be even harder! We all need someone to lean on during the roller coaster of military life. When you just PCSed to a new area (or maybe all your friends just PCSed) it's scary to think about putting yourself out there again. But it is so important that you do! I talk to Lauren and Michelle of The Dependas of how to find that military friend and keep trying to find your people despite setbacks.
Lauren is a USMC spouse to her husband, James, and a mom of three girls. She is an avid fitness buff to include lifting heavy weights, running further than most people find sane, and yoga so she doesn’t kill anyone around her. She is one half of #TheDependas as well as a small business owner specializing in brand development and VA services and the managing editor of Daily Mom Military. 
Michelle is the other half of The Dependas. She is an Air Force wife, and the mother of two monkeys and a fur baby. She loves her  Mama, Jesus, and America, too! In addition to managing the controlled chaos of motherhood and military life, she is also a registered nurse and dietician who gets her kicks providing TLC to laboring mamas and new babies. Military life has given her the realization that she is not in control and that is incredibly freeing. She enjoys  running, watching real-estate shows with my hubby, and credits her positive attitude in life to her faith, lots of laughter (often to inappropriate things), and the power of relatively cheap Riesling and sweet red wines. 
You can find these wonderful ladies at:
Connect with Lauren:
Daily Mom
Jul 3rd, 2018 by dearmilfamily at 7:00 am

PCS (permanent change of station) season is in full-swing! We are right smack-dab in the middle of it with about two more months to go. I don't know about you, but once I have moved into a place I like to make it feel like home as soon as possible. But we can't change too much about our new home especially if we are renting. We have to find new and creative ways to decorate our homes while on a budget and while keeping the damage to a minimum. On today's episode, I talk to Maria Reed of Moving with the Military about how to do just that (and of course we gab about other things too). 

Maria Reed is the creator of "Moving with the Military," a home improvement and lifestyle web series that helps military families turn a house into a HOME. As an active duty military spouse, she understands the struggles and joys of military family life. During her 25 year career in the television and film industry, she worked on locations all over the world;  creating spectacular scenes from the modern design to traditional. As a military spouse of 14 years, she has learned to be resilient, kind and resourceful. Through decorating and design she has discovered that treasures can be found in the most unlikely places, and helping people through creativity is her passion.

You can find Maria:

Jun 26th, 2018 by dearmilfamily at 7:00 am

Deployments can really suck when your the partner who is holding up the homefront. But it can suck even more if you're the kid! Children often have a hard time understanding why their parents have to deploy, where they are going, and why the deployed parent can't keep regular contact. On this episode, Sheena talks to children's author Kristin Ayyar about the book she wrote to help kids understand deployment a little better.

Kristin Ayyar was an Air Force spouse for over 24 years and has experienced many separations from her husband during several deployments, lengthy military training courses and long flying missions. These experiences inspired her to write the children’s books Countdown ‘til Daddy Comes Home and Countdown ‘til Mommy Comes Home

Kristin has been an avid volunteer in her 3 children’s schools and in the military community. She was awarded the Commander’s in Chief’s Outstanding Community Service Medal in June of 2006.

Throughout the numerous moves of her husband’s Air Force career, Kristin has held many sales and marketing positions from a Sales Representative of Unilever Corporation to a Senior Sales Representative of Apartment Guide Magazine. Her family has moved more than 14 times, including assignments in India, Hawaii and across the U.S. mainland. Kristin currently in Oakton, Virginia

Kristin is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin- Madison with a Bachelor of Arts degree in International Relations and Economics.

Find Kristin:





Amazon: Countdown 'till Daddy Comes Home

Jun 19th, 2018 by dearmilfamily at 7:00 am
Has your spouse been given a duty station that you are not really excited about? I've been there when my husband was sent to San Antonio. I was not excited about living there to say the least. But everything changed around for me by the end of the assignment, and it can for you too! Sierra Redmond also knows what it's like to be sent somewhere you don't want to go. She and I discuss her tips on how to get pass your initial distaste and end up loving where you're at!
Sierra Redmond is the 22 year old Mom and Army Wife behind The Daily Impressions Lifestyle Blog. The Daily Impressions was created in 2017 to encourage the building of stronger family units through travel and experiences. Sierra went to college for Broadcast Journalism TV/Radio and Media and was set on being a correspondent. In 2014, she married her high school sweetheart turned US Army soldier and  knew that it would change her life. After getting married and moving to Fort Leonard Wood, Mo she realized how impossible it was going to be to work in media the way that she intended...That’s when she discovered blogging. She found a fulfilling career that allowed her to support her husband's career and be a stay at home mom to her son.  She hopes that her website encourages military families to travel more often, draw closer together to build strong families and make the most out of their military experiences. She is currently serving as the Armed Forces Insurance Military Spouse of the Year base winner for USAG Miami and uses her platform to show Military wives everywhere that they can live their best lives.  
Jun 12th, 2018 by dearmilfamily at 7:00 am
Those members of the joint spouse or dual military family know what true commitment means. From my perspective, it seems at times that these families have double the sacrifice at times because of the struggle with scheduling and even getting assigned to at least the same area of the country. Many couples that both serve in the military have long-term long-distance relationships. I talk to friend of the podcast, Amanda Huffman of the blog Airman to Mom about what it was like when she and her husband were both serving in the Air Force and the struggles they overcame.
Amanda is military veteran who served in the Air Force for six years as a Civil Engineer including a deployment to Afghanistan. She traded in her combat boots for a diaper bag to stay home with her two boys and follow her husband’s military career. Which currently has them stationed in Southern California leaving the dream and making frequent trips to Disneyland. Her blog Airman to Mom incorporates stories from her past military life and how she views life through her unique life experiences of both a veteran and military spouse. You can check out more about Amanda on InstagramFacebook and Pinterest.
Jun 5th, 2018 by dearmilfamily at 7:00 am
Last week, we talked about getting settled in your new community and we are continuing that them by talking about ways to get connected. One way to get connected and put down some roots is to get involved with your local community by volunteering. Sara Hunold joins the podcast today to talk about her organization Freedom's Ring USA a unique way to get your whole family involved and get connected to your family's assigned duty station.
Sara Hunold is a wife of a Marine and mother to  three toddlers- a 4,3 and 1 year old. Prior to staying home with the kids, Sara was a high school government teacher. It was in losing that professional status she really discovered the desire for meaningful work, sense of community, and need to make a contribution through my own service that was the catalyst for founding Freedom’s Ring USA a new nonprofit that calls on military spouses & families to model patriotism in action by doing extraordinary acts for others as a way to increase personal well-being and sense of community. 
Find Freedom's Ring USA at:
May 29th, 2018 by dearmilfamily at 7:00 am

Maybe you've already PCSed or getting ready to and wondering how to build up a new village or build one for the first time. The number one thing that military families need is a local support network. So how do you get started and where do you go for help? I talk to Jennifer Borgstrom of Military Bridge about how to get connected to a new duty station and how locals can help military families feel more at home sooner.

Jennifer Borgstrom is a proud military spouse and founder of  Jennifer lives in Hampton Roads, Virginia with her two kids, two dogs and husband.  She is a Minnesotan at heart born and raised.  Jennifer moved away from the cold to never return to attend college at The University of Arizona where she majored in Business.  She met her husband while going through pilot training in Tucson which led to 2 years of long distance dating.  After getting married, Jennifer and her husband moved to Hampton Roads area to finish up his military career....after 24 years in the Air National Guard, she jokes she is still waiting for him to finish up.  
Jennifer worked in Pharmaceutical sales before having children.  Once she had kids she chose to be a stay at home mother.  With her children getting older and the realization of a void in resources in the military community she launched in 2012.  MilitaryBridge has kept her busy over the last 6 years and it has been very rewarding experience for her.  Her family loves the Hampton Roads area and enjoys raising their children there.  In her little free time, she enjoys golfing, exercise, cooking, boating and of course spending time with her family.  
Social info:
May 22nd, 2018 by dearmilfamily at 7:00 am

Giving birth is definitely an experience. But doing it when your spouse is in the military can add some unexpected needs. Both of my birth experiences were unique in their own way. The thing I wish I did was have a doula at both of them. Mothers often feel like they have no control in their birth processes. Doulas can help moms get back some control. I talk to Amanda Dodson of  Military Birth Resource Network and certified doula about what a doula can do for you before, during, and after giving birth.

Amanda is a certified doula CD (DONA) and HypnoBirthing Educator HBCE.  Her passion to help service members and their families during pregnancy and beyond inspired her to found the Japan Birth Resource Network.  In order to coordinate and provide training and support for local area doulas and parents, Amanda opened the Okinawa Birth Education Center while stationed in Okinawa. As a military spouse of 19 years, she has spent over 13 years living overseas with her husband of 19 years and their 3 children, two of which were born in Okinawa.  Amanda was voted 2016 AFI Spouse of the Year for Marine Corps Base SD Butler, Okinawa, Japan for her important contributions and unwavering commitment to the military community and our country.  She has spent the past 9 years educating and supporting military families stateside and abroad, working to build a continuity of care for expecting families and building relationships while fostering growth in local communities.

You can find Amanda:

Her personal business:
May 15th, 2018 by dearmilfamily at 7:00 am

 "Moving is one of the top stressors in life, right along with death of a loved one, divorce, a major illness, and job less" says Carol Morgan of The Huffington Post (Check out the full article here). With all that stress, it can really take a toll on your physical health. But if you get in control of it before you start the move, you might be able to reduce the impact. On this episode, I talk to Tatiana Mone of Tatiana Mone Fitness. She gives some amazing tips and advice on how to stay healthy before, during, and after a PCS.


Tatiana wears many hats on a daily basis. She is a military wife, mother, project manager, fitness competitor and Certified Health and Wellness Coach. Her journey to health and balance came out of necessity. She was unhappy, over her healthy weight, in toxic relationships, and too career focused. She had always known what it meant to look healthy but she had to learn what overall wellness really meant. She had to learn to let go of the negativity in my life, set clear goals, and focus on what was important. Today She is an empowered, happy, and loving my life. Her goal is to inspire others and equip them with the tools to live a happy healthy, balanced life. You can find her:

FB Group:



May 8th, 2018 by dearmilfamily at 7:00 am

Military life brings about a unique set of circumstances for military spouses. We have to decide many times if it worth it to try to find a job or just wait until our servicemembers are finished with their military careers. But we can actually choose to do something else! We can start our own business and become an entrepreneur! And these types of careers usually translate into a PCS proof business; one in which the business can travel with you wherever you go. In this episode, I speak with Moni Jefferson of Dog Tags and Heels LLC and MilSpouse Creative.

Moni Jefferson is a MilSpouse entreprenuer and owner and creator of Dog Tags and Heels LLC a PR company, the MilSpouse Creative a group devoted to MilSpouse entrepreneurs, MilCam Filter App, and MilEmojis. She is an Air Force wife of 20 years and mother to three brilliant children. 

Connect with Moni:





Creator of MilCam App

This episode was sponsored by Sudio Bluetooth Headphones. Go grab a pair of their amazing headphones to use to listen to the podcast. Use code: MILFAMILY to get 15% off your purchase.