Friday, November 15, 2019

The Brigade that Builds Brands: Home Baker, Food Blogger & Army Wife Payal Kharbanda on turning a hobby into a biz

Hello friends! Today, I’ve invited Army wife, home baker and food blogger, Payal Kharbanda to The Brigade that Builds Brands series. She spills the beans on how she used her passion for cooking to bake up a delicious food blog & baking business. A fashionista by qualification, Payal is that lady who always finds a way to use her skills, interests or training to create meaningful work opportunities from wherever she is posted. I hope her story inspires You to create a work-from-home small biz that you’ll enjoy working at J.

*For updates on the #workfromhome series & #milpreneur inspiration, do follow us at @chandanamilspo on Instagram + check out the "Be your own Boss from Anywhere" series on Youtube here.

Milpreneur series
Featuring Milpreneurs
CB. Please tell us something about yourself – what do you do, where are you based and how long have you been a fauji/military wife.

P.  I am Payal Kharbanda, married for almost 13 years to the olive greens. I have two beautiful daughters and belong to Delhi (presently also based in Delhi). I am a fashion student from NIFT. I come from a business family. I, now am a food blogger (#365dishesonmyplate) and a home baker.

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

6 Reasons why military/fauji wives stop working

The military spouses/ fauji wives I meet are a talented and well-qualified lot. While a small percentage of them change over to a teaching profession to suit the nomadic life of military families, many ladies put their professional lives on the back burner because of lack of appropriate job opportunities.

Create your own work-from-home careers
Be Your Own Boss From Anywhere - Blog & Youtube series
Here are some of the most common reasons fauji wives press the pause button when it comes to working.
1.     “I can’t find a job to fit my qualifications.” This is the most common lament. When you live at back-of-beyond military bases with interesting job opportunities just as rare as the sparrow, it can be a demoralizing factor for many. 
2.   “Social and volunteer commitments take up all my time.” I agree, that within the defence services of our country there's often a lot to do when it comes to parties, welfare activities, and other social events. If you let it, all of this can take the place of professional work. But even though you can easily have a full calendar of events, with some gumption and prioritizing, you can juggle both – work and the social scene at your base. 
3.   “I don’t think I have what it takes to be a work-at-home entrepreneur.” Time and time again, I’ve seen military wives/ fauji wives give up on entrepreneurship even before they’ve taken the time to understand what it involves. When it comes to a job vs. your own venture, most prefer the former, even when there aren’t any good jobs on the horizon. Being your own boss seems like this huge mountain that is difficult to scale.

Monday, November 11, 2019

GIVEAWAY from Jugnoo Story Art, my quirky art brand

#giveaway  Helloo friends! Are you in the mood to win a set of these fun 'n' fresh art print #coasters for your table/ #coffeecups ☕/ # teacups from Jugnoo Story Art (@jugnoostoryart), my niche brand of quirky art and art prints?

quirky art coasters
Quirky coasters from Jugnoo Story Art
We are giving away 2 sets: 1 owl set & 1 set with #jugnoo characters (each set has 5 quirky coasters @399). These vibrant coasters are made of MDF with art prints of my original art and unique characters.

To ENTER this Giveaway, you have do All of these 3 steps:

1. Follow us on Instagram at @jugnoostoryart.

2. Like us on Facebook at @jugnoostoryart (

3. Answer this question/leave a comment on both the above pages:

"What kind of products would you like to see at Jugnoo Story Art in the near future?" 

Note: Do all 3 steps to enter this #giveaway. This giveaway is valid only for people living in India.

:) We will announce 2 winners (each wins a set of our choice) on November 17 / Next Sunday via Lucky Draw, based on names of those o u who participate.

So, are you gonna be part of this Giveaway Party??? 

#artprint #faujiwifeentrepreneur

#milpreneur #art 

#owlart #owl #girl #lama #boy #table #tabledecor #free #jugnoostoryart 

Thursday, November 7, 2019

The Brigade that Builds Brands: Writer, Novelist & Army wife Puja Mukherjee Khattri on creating a career that sustains you through different phases of life

Hello friends! Meet Puja Mukherjee Khattri, a freelance content writer and self-published novelist, and Army wife, who forged on in life and work with courage and gumption after she lost her Army officer husband on active duty, a few years ago. Puja and I have known each other online for the past many years. I really wanted her to share her story at The Brigade that Builds Brands to inspire ladies, whose husbands are still in service or those who have lost their better halves in the line of duty, to build sustainable careers from wherever they are in life or in the country.

puja mukherjee khattri - writer, novelist, army wife

CB. Please tell us something about yourself – what do you do, where are you based and how long have you been a fauji/military wife.

PMK. Hi Chandana, I am an army daughter and wife. I am a writer and have been writing for the last twenty odd years. The kids and I live in Delhi with my parents. We moved to Delhi after my husband, Lt Col Abhishek Khattri, died on active duty.

CB. Fauji wives make their home in an assortment of obscure places across the country. Our lives are about living in the moment and doing what we can, when we can. Can you share how you stayed creative or found work that satisfied you while moving across the country?

PMK. I truly believe that I am blessed in my choice of profession, because I can work from almost anywhere, as long as I have a computer and an internet connection. I have sent in my articles from the most interesting of locations. I remember standing at the doorway to our temporary accommodation in Sikkim, while it was snowing outside and the bukhari was on inside, waiting for the internet speed to pick up enough to send my email. And that time I used to log onto the internet through my cellphone. When we were moving out or moving into a new accommodation I have worked in middle of stacks of boxes!

Monday, November 4, 2019

6 Smart reasons to start a work-from-home career as a military/fauji wife

I prefer being my own boss any day over reporting to a boss. But if you’ve always worked for an organization—a company or school, then you might wonder what’s so great about this self-employed lifestyle. Especially, when working for yourself is about putting in just as much hard work or more and not getting a paycheck every month in the bank (the money trickles in, eventually).
work-from-home military wives
Work-from-Home entrepreneurship for fauji wives

Here’s why I think home-based self-employment is a great fit for the military wife:
1.     You can pack and carry your work wherever you go: Whether you’re moving to another town on posting (PCS) or traveling with your husband on a TD (temporary detatchment), you can take your work along. While you may have to take a break when you’re moving to another base, you don’t have to quit working or worry about taking a long leave of absence. 
2.   You can work from back-of-beyond military bases: When your spouse is in the military, especially the Army and the Air Force, postings to obscure places across the length and breadth of the country is a given. And rather than making the difficult choice of staying back in a bigger town to work or giving up working altogether if you move with your husband, as a work-from-home entrepreneur, you can continue working (with some solid tweaks to customize it to your current posting and portfolio requirements) wherever the service sends you.

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Be Your Own Boss From Anywhere: A brand new blog series for military wives & moms!

Hello ladies! Are you a military/fauji wife or aspiring work-from-home/homeschooling mom with talents, skills, degrees and a deep desire to whip up a home-based career from anywhere? Have you been wondering where to begin or how to start that work-from-home small biz? Do you often feel disheartened about the lack of good job opportunities where you’re posted and feel that you won’t be able to have a career as a fauji wife?

work-from-home moms & military wives
Helping military/fauji wives & moms with small kids, start that work-from-home venture

I’ve got a new & Free blog series, with audio (download it below) + video (am beginning my Yourtube journey soon) to help you get started. I’ve also launched a new Facebook group called Be Your Own Boss From Anywhere, as an online meet-up of work-from-home women entrepreneurs. 

What’s in this new series for newbie work-from-home military wives? From the nuts and bolts of identifying what you want to do, how you need to get started and how you can juggle work with your military wife commitments, this blog series has you covered.

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

The Brigade that Builds Brands: Meet Navy wife & handmade entrepreneur Rupinder Kaur

Hello, dear readers! I’m back after a longish break – a surprising, out-of-the-blue break, where I launched a whole new career as an artist, making and selling quirky, cure, out-of-the-box artwork (here's my Jugnoo Story Art FB page). I was also recovering from some health issues, and giving all the required TLC to my spine ;-). I’m back here again, with new ideas, new challenges (i.e. balancing writing, art, homeschooling my son & my military spouse portfolio), and the gumption to nudge more of you into the ‘Boss Lady’ life as a self-employed, work-from-home, fauji wife.

self-employed entrepreneur

I’m launching a brand new series every week with posts designed to help you banish those issues and create your own Girl Boss life, from anywhere in the country! Do subscribe to the blog to stay tuned. And, don't forget to join our new group: Be Your Own Boss From Anywhere.

Today, I’ve invited Navy wife and Jewellery Designer, Rupinder Kaur at The Brigade that Builds Brands, to share her creative journey as she juggled military life, motherhood and a business. Without further ado, here’s what we chatted about.

For those who are new to my blog: The Brigade that Builds Brands  is an interview series about Fauji wives who create businesses or stay uber creative while juggling all the social + family commitments.

CB. Please tell us something about yourself – what do you do, where are you based and how long have you been a fauji wife.

R.  By education I am a trained Hindustani classical vocalist and also have completed my B Ed. I spent my initial 10 years of married life looking after and raising my two lovely daughters. In 20114-15 I realized that I had some time to spare. Also my husband’s job took him for long sailings and to utilized my time gainfully I got involved with NWWA and also started making utility items from paper weaving. I started my brand ‘Recreation – The Inner Voice’ in February 2015. The page has been a huge success for me and today I have more than 800+ followers of my page.  My paper weaving art was a huge success but regular transfers thereafter ruined some of my artifacts due to their delicate nature and this made me think that I needed to do something different.

So I started making jewelry with a difference. I started investing my time in learning about fabric art and making jewelry out of jewelry. I also started hand embroidery and crafted my embroidery into jhumkas and neck pieces which were liked by my inner circle of friends. I started exhibiting my art within Naval community and also got chance to display my art during Kala Ghoda festival in 2017. NWWA, at Mumbai, was very supportive of my effort as well as that of other artists. Since that time there has been no looking back and my effort has been recognized by art lovers across India.

I am presently at Delhi. I am married into Naval family since 2002.

small business
Rupinder's handmade jewellery

CB. Fauji wives make their home in an assortment of obscure places across the country. Our lives are about living in the moment and doing what we can, when we can. Can you share how you stayed creative or found work that satisfied you while moving across the country?

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

How this "closet illustrator" & writer became a working Artist - A peek into my artsy journey

The classic case of “life is what happens when you’re making other plans” actually happened to me on my birthday on March 30. 

Just as I was reaching the 5,000 word mark of my second in-the-works Kindle book, I morphed into an artist. A “for real” artist, who paints for a living and plays with beautiful colors and brushes for all her “working hours”.

So this is what happened. I was taking a break from writing, after having published a bestselling Kindle book “The Work-At-Home Military Wife”, and was hoping to recharge my batteries and get more ideas for my next ebook “Self-care for Women”. The best way to indulge in self-care myself was to bring out my paints and brushes, and paint the joyful pictures that I knew would rejuvenate me and fill up my well with happiness.

I shared the photos of those finished paintings on social media and these led to a few initial queries from moms who wanted to buy my artwork for their kids’ rooms. All of it snowballed into ‘Jugnoo Story Art my cute + quirky art venture, where I fuse my passion for painting & stories.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

The Brigade that Builds Brands: Novelist, ex-Army officer & Navy Wife Sajita Nair draws inspiration from her military life

Hello everyone! Today, I've invited Sajita Nair at #thebrigadethatbuildsbrands. She is a former Army officer, a Navy wife & an acclaimed novelist. We talk about how the #military life can actually spur a #Milspouse to create meaningful work for herself.

C. Please tell us something about yourself – what do you do, where are you based and how long have you been a fauji wife.

S.I am a former army Captain and writer based in Bangalore. My father served in the Air Force and I have been married to a Naval officer for the past twenty years. Hence I have experienced life in the three arms of the forces.

C. What has been your business or creative journey been like: how & when did you start your venture?

S.Post my tenure in the army, I began to work towards my dream of being a writer. Initially I published short stories, articles and travelogues in reputed publications. Only when I gathered enough confidence, did I attempt writing a full-length novel. My debut novel ‘She’s a Jolly Good Fellow’ was published by Hachette India in 2010 and follows the life of two pioneer women officers, trying to find their place in the male dominated army. 

C. Were you in a different profession and re-trained for the current one? If yes, can you share how/where you learned the skills required for your current profession?

S.I learnt everything about writing, on the internet. Formatting query letters, researching information, editing written work and presenting a polished piece of writing to the editor – I learnt all these from various websites. For serious learners, there is no bigger guru than the internet.

Sunday, March 31, 2019

The Brigade that Builds Brands: Army wife Shreya Sharan Pawar builds two businesses on the move

Hello everyone! For every #militaryspouse #entrepreneur I meet, I meet 10 other talented #military wives, who tell me that being their own boss from military bases in boondocks is impossible. Today, I speak to a young Army wife, who shows us how you can not only build one but multiple brands on the go. Meet my #bizbuddy Shreya Sharan Pawar and let's find out how she does what she does.

Shreya Sharan Pawar

 C. Please tell us something about yourself – what do you do, where are you based and how long have you been a fauji wife.

S. I was an army kid and became an army wife in 2012. I am currently based in Wellington, Tamil Nadu but we will be shifting once again by mid April. As of today, I don’t know where I will be 6 weeks later.
I am a solo entrepreneur and have 2 business ventures which are very different from each one.
My first venture is“Burst of Happyness”  - a brand of vegan, handmade & natural bath and body products.
My most recent venture is Business Mentoring for creative Indian women where I help them build a business around a passion or a hobby.

C. What has been your business or creative journey been like: how & when did you start your venture?

S. I have always been a creative, DIY kind of a person and my first experience of entrepreneurship was at the age of 11 when I tried to sell handmade trinkets and cards to a local store in Panagarh, West Bengal. Unfortunately, my dreams were dashed coz I sold none.

I never thought of entrepreneurship again till I got married (while studying for my MBA), ditched a high paying corporate job offer post my MBA  and moved to MamunCantt, Pathankot with my husband.

 That's when I started Burst of Happyness as a hobby  from a Captain’s kitchen. It was a result of my own struggle with severe acne and hormonal issues which prompted me to follow a sustainable, green and a natural lifestyle. Soapmaking was a hobby I had picked up along the way to avoid hormone disrupting chemicals present in most bath and body products. I combined my background in adverting + my MBA in Marketing and my soapmaking hobby to build a business.

I started my other venture - Business Coaching - 2 years back. The reason for launching this was because a lot of women started to approach me seeing my progress with Burst of Happyness. So, I use this platform to share tips, tricks and all the lessons I have learnt as a solo woman entrepreneur in India.

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

The Writer's Den: Novelist Katie Mettner's journey as a prolific writer & self-published author

Hello friends! We’re launching a new series this month called The Writer’s Den (#thewritersden)! Once a month, we’ll invite a writer and author to come over to the blog and tell us about their journey in writing and publishing, their craft and their struggles, their inspirations and their stories. Today, we’ve invited #inddieauthor Katie Mettner, who has written 36 novels and published 31 of those, to tell us what got her started in this journey.

 C. Please tell us about yourself – what you do, the number of books you’ve written, where do you live, your family.

K. My name is Katie Mettner and I live in the Northwoods of Wisconsin near Lake Superior. My husband is a teacher for a local school district, and we’ve been married eighteen years. We had our own little instalove story. We met online in November 1999, met at Thanksgiving, he proposed on New Year’s Eve 1999, and we were married in April 2000! We have three kids, whom we call the three E’s because their names all start with E! Emily is starting college this year as a music education major, Edward is learning to drive, and Elias is learning the tuba! Our only pet is a very special leopard gecko named Leroy Jethro Gibbs (my daughter is a huge fan of NCIS).

I’m disabled as an amputee, but I used to be a medical transcriptionist for a dozen years. That job gave me a lot of fodder for stories and the knowledge to write about physical conditions and how to research them. I spend my days writing, editing, reading, crocheting, and momming (is that a word?) I just finished my 36th novel and currently have 31 published. I have two more releases for 2018.

Thursday, March 7, 2019

How to Write & Self-publish your First Kindle Book: Lessons from my indie publishing journey

Hello friends! I recently wrote and published a Kindle book (which made it to the #amazonbestseller list in the first week) called ‘The Work-At-Home Military Wife – A quickstart guide to creating a pack-and-carry career and work-from-home lifestyle on the move’. It took me a few months, from start to finish, and it’s been one roller coaster of a learning experience.

self publishing
How to write, launch and promo that first Kindle book
I’d love to write and publish more books, both non-fiction and fiction, and the lessons learnt here will help me in the months to come. If you’re self-publishing your first book, I hope my journey will help you too.

Writing a book: I started writing this book in December 2018, when my parents were visiting me, and I could grab a few extra hours to write every day as they were helping out with my homeschooled son. When it comes to writing a book, there are so many tiny steps, and Hassan Osman's ebook helped me break down the process into bite sized pieces. Here are the steps I followed:
1.      Write down the ideas for your book, and choose one that you want to take up for the current project.
2.    Break it down into a list of topics and create a table of contents.
3.    Add in the extras like Acknowledgements, notes, copyright information and anything else that you want in your book apart from the chapters.
4.    Set some deadlines for yourself, like maybe 1000 words each day or 45 minutes at your desk writing your book. While a lot of authors suggest writing tonnes of words each day, I fit things according to my schedule. This is the best thing about Hassan’s book; he asks you to spend only 30 minutes per day, if that’s all you have, to get your book done.
5.     Spend at least 5 days a week on your book, so that you don’t lose the rhythm and flow.
6.    Finish the book. This can be the tedious part because by the time you’re at the end of it, you might feel a tad bored or may want to take a break from it.

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

The Brigade that Builds Brands: Air Force wife Sanyukta's Children's Room Decor & Linen Biz

Hello friends! I’m back with another story from #thebrigadethatbuildsbrands series. We’re featuring Air Force wife Sanyukta Bhardwaj today and her ‘Apple of My Eye’ – a handmade children’s room linen and art venture. I’d  like to mention that we will also feature veterans, veteran ladies and Veer Naari’s as well as Armed Forces wives, who have set up interesting businesses and brands. If you know anyone we can feature, drop us a line (contact details below). 
Now, on to our chat with Sanyukta.

Sanyukta Bhardwaj - #Milpreneur

C. Please tell us something about yourself – what do you do, where are you based and how long have you been a fauji wife.
S. I’m an Air Force wife, stay-at-home parent and an Architect by education. Currently based out of the outskirts of Delhi NCR and have been married to my man in blue since 10 years.

C. What has been your business or creative journey been like: how & when did you start your venture?
S. The venture honestly started by chance; it all started when I was packing the hospital bag for my yet to be born son. Being an architect and a daughter of an artist (my mother), I have had a flair for painting, so both of us decided to hand paint and stitch linen for him. Post the birth I happened to show all the hand painted stuff to my fellow Air Force friends. And they motivated me to start this venture when they mentioned how such kind of linen and accessories are not available and even if it is, it costs a bomb.

So that is how ‘Apple of my eye’ was conceived and formed. My very first order for customized bedding set was from the same dear friend (an Air Force wife herself).

My mother and I run this venture together. I mostly do the PR, managing the Facebook page, handling client orders, and my mother does the execution or field work ( since she is stationed and I move from place to place) so we discuss all the details of fabrics, textures, designs, colors etc over the phone.
I however, do most of the wall art orders myself as sourcing canvases and stocking on art and craft supplies is easy with the constant moving!

C. Were you in a different profession and re-trained for the current one? If yes, can you share how/where you learned the skills required for your current profession?

S. I’m an architect by education and all architects are artists/designers by default, so I’m the jack of all trades; the trades being sketching, drawing, doodling, painting and scribbling. So I just had to polish my skills when I started with ‘Apple of my eye’, and now I’m planning to learn stitching too.

Friday, March 1, 2019

Homeschooling a Kindergartner in India – Part 2

We started homeschooling our 5-year-old about 10 months ago. Though we were always intrigued by the concept of homeschooling, we didn’t really know where and how to begin.

Photo credit: Smokey Bandit

Should we set up a strict school-like timetable? Should we set up an entire room like a classroom? Will I, as the primary homeschooling parent, be able to cope with entire days of studies, play and activities, with very little time to do my own work?

There were many questions jostling for attention in my mind, but we decided to take the plunge and go with the flow. This is what we did to get started in our homeschooling journey:

Stocked up on good quality children’s books. I stumbled across a curriculum called Build Your Library, and liked how everything is taught through beautiful storybooks and ‘Living Books’. While I do have the curriculum with me, I generally tend to pick and choose the books as per what we want to learn that day.

Made art and craft material accessible. While we always had art supplies that my son could work through, we put it all in a basket and kept it at a place that he could easily access. This way, now he is always working on a project of his own, upcycling cardboard boxes into robots, cameras and whatnot.

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

6 Common Challenges you Encounter as a Work-from-home Military Wife

I’ve been a work-from-home military spouse for 13 years now. From working for a small publishing company to leading a pitch-and-query life of a freelance journalist and content writer, to starting an on-phone health coaching practice, I’ve done an assortment of work. Like many military wives, I’ve worked from bases in the boondocks most of the time, with erratic internet, too many social commitments and odd comments about this strange work-from-home life that I lead.
Create a work-from-home career on the move!

Here’s a bucket list of everything that you stumble across as a military wife, who works-from-home:
1.     Spotty or non-existent internet: While fast internet connectivity is taken for granted in “big cities”, when you’re in the boondocks, this is a rare commodity. I’ve spent countless hours tearing my hair out when I’ve missed my deadline just because the internet refused to boot up. I’ve also had to take sabbaticals because either it took too long to get an internet connection at a new base or because the internet cables got cut & it took ages (read: 6 months) to mend them.
2.    Power cuts: Almost every small town base you’re based in has a regular schedule for long periods of power cuts. “Load Shedding” as it’s called, can play havoc into your work, especially if you don’t yet have an inverter or, even when you have one, the battery’s given up because the power cut has spilled into the next day.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

‘The Work-At-Home Military Wife’: Why is it a necessary read for military spouses with ambitions and professional dreams of their own?

Hello friends! I have some happy news to share. I’ve just released my first #Kindlebook about creating a work-from-home lifestyle on the move (The Work-At-Home Military Wife – A quickstart guide to creating a pack-and-carry career and work-from-home lifestyle on the move) + a Free ebook with 25 legit work-from-home careers.

(on Amazon)

While there are lots of books on work-at-home jobs, there weren’t any for the always-on-the-move military wife. But why is a book like this even necessary, you may ask?

Here’s why:

We’re always on the move. And when you’re on the move, you’re moving on to a new base, a new part of the country (or world), new friends and new horizons. It’s difficult to hold down a permanent job, unless you’re in the military yourself. This often leaves us wondering about what we can do at this new place and how we can use our education and talents to get a job.

We’re often in the boondocks. Several military bases are in farflung areas of the country, with zero job opportunities. In such situations, the choice is often between not working and well, not working.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

How to begin homeschooling in India – 6 Questions to ask yourself

About 10 months ago, we took the decision to homeschool our son. With a cutback on the school transport, excessive and sudden travel plans at our front and eventually, a posting to a small town with meager schooling options, homeschooling was a decision we entered into with trepidation.  But over the months, I’m getting used to being my son’s teacher and we’re finding our own groove to this homeschooling life.

Homeschooling in India - A beginner's guide
While I’m no expert in being a homeschooling parent, I can offer you tried and tested tips to help you make the transition to a homeschooling life, if that’s something you’re thinking about.

Here’s what you should think through, plan for and embrace as you start homeschooling:

Why are you homeschooling or thinking of doing so? 
For me the number one reason was my son, who wanted to be taught at home and secondly, the lack of logistical support in sending him to a school he enjoyed going to. And, now that we’re in a place that doesn’t have schools that teach in a hands-on way, the only option is to homeschool. Your reasons can be similar to or different than mine. But whatever are your reasons, be very clear on these because there will be times along this journey, when you will need your reasons to motivate you to go on.

Are you ready to dedicate a solid chunk of your time to homeschooling? 
In a homeschooling family, at least one parent needs to spend time teaching and doing activities with the child. Leaving the child home with a maid or delegating all the classes to a tutor, won’t really help in creating a nurturing homeschooling environment. It also defeats the purpose of taking the child out of the school system to homeschool.

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

My Big Rocks for 2019 - Filling up the jar with what matters

The New Year’s rolled in, and it’s the possibilities that a new beginning is filled with that’s got me scrabbling to chalk out what I’d like to fill my jar with. 

2019 Goals
Goals and plans for 2019

What will be my Big Rocks, Medium Rocks, and Sand this year? I know that if I don’t jot this down, I’ll fill my jar with far too many things and get overwhelmed in the process.

So, here’s my Big Rocks for 2019. Big Rocks are all the things that are on top priority for me, and I will want to carve out a chunk of time for these:

1.      Homeschooling my son. About 10 months ago, we plunged into a homeschool life. What started with the hunt for a detailed curriculum has now eased into a with-the-flow education. We spend our mornings in our makeshift school on the porch overlooking our garden. And this is an essential part of our week.
2.    Writing more. As a health coach and writer, I spend my days doing both – upgrading my wellness know-how, creating workshops, writing and teaching creative writing. But this year, I want to dedicate a chunk of time daily to writing books, blogs, and stories.
3.    Family time. We are like the 3 Bears and enjoy huddling in at home, pottering around in the kitchen garden, baking something and enjoying a good Netflix movie on television. This is the sugar and spice to our daily life, and just as essential or more to our days.
4.    Learning new skills. As a #militaryspouse entrepreneur, I have to constantly evolve and add to my knowledge pool, to do work that I love from the back-of-beyond places that we are posted in. I’m learning about being a self-published author, which involves everything from how to write more books to designing and editing to marketing them using social media platforms.
5.     Exercise. With the hours that I put in the chair, stretching and walking are imperative to factor in. Spending an hour every day exercising also keeps me happy and energetic.
6.    Meditation and Reiki. For a while last year, I was consistent with my meditation and Reiki practice, and the way it helped ground, center and calm me, is wondrous. So, this year, I want to schedule it in and be more consistent about getting to my mat.

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Happy 2019 + My 2018 at a glance

Hello everyone! Happy New Year. May 2019 be joyous, peaceful, prosperous, productive and healthy for all of us.

So, I’ve been away for a while, packing and moving, unpacking again and setting up home in a far-flung part of the country. Amidst all of this, I’ve been figuring out how I can fit in homeschooling, social obligations and my own dreams into the same canvas.

It’s not only been a full two months, but also a full 2018. With so much of traveling and living out of suitcases, not knowing where we would be every month, transitioning to a homeschooling life, and trying to find a place for my goals within the jigsaw puzzle of this, it’s been a rollercoaster of a year.

Here’s looking back at 2018 that’s whizzed and whooshed past like a dervish. At a glance, this is what I was up to:

Began settling into our first big town posting at the beginning of 2018.

Started teaching Creative Writing to children and enjoyed it immensely.

Got into the groove of DIY cleaning and housekeeping (our byebye maid phase), with our trusty spin mop and dishwasher.

Launched, an online resource for women who want to live a healthy life by being gentle to the Earth.

Completed and earned my Women’s Wellness Educator Certification, and taught in-person health workshops.

Continued creating wellness content for my website and workshops.

Launched #TheBrigaethatBuildsBrands series that features #militarywives, who launch #workfromhome careers while moving across the country with their husbands.

Started learning a variety of things – from Reiki Level 2 and Angel Card Reading to nuances of growing one’s small business via social media to learning how to become a #selfpublished author, it’s been about absorbing skills that can help me grow as a professional.

Wrote the first draft of my first full-length #nonfiction book.

Started #homeschooling my son.

Moved to multiple places + got posted yet again to a tiny town.

What has 2018 been like for you?

Leave a comment below + connect with me via Twitter (@ChandanaMilspo / @4GGorgeousGreen) & Instagram (@ChandanaMilSpo / @gorgeousgirlsgogreen)

#2018 #NewYear #yearataglance

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