Find Your Focus, Create a Dream Board


How to Create a Dream / Inspiration Board

On last weeks radio show we highlighted a unique idea to help us focus on our goals and priorities. This project can guide our efforts and help keep us on track. Creating a dream board, or sometimes called vision or inspiration board can also be great for stress relief!

Here are some basic project details:


Tacks, Tape or Glue
Bulletin or foam board

Difficulty Level: Easy

Time needed: as little as 15 min

Here are 5 steps to creating your own Dream Board / Inspiration Board:

1. Time to brainstorm. Think about areas of your life that you want to improve or plan. I’ve seen inspiration boards to plan weddings, to get into shape, eat healthy, saving for that car or vacation….the possibilities are endless. The point is to think about what you would really love to do, what big event in your life is coming up that you need to plan for, or maybe highlighting your priorities like spending more time with your family. These are just ideas to get your creative juices flowing.

Think about these questions:

What do I want to do, have, be, get or give?

Where do I want to go?

2. Next start looking for photographs that match your vision. You can look through old magazines, even online at websites like If you are an artist, sketch your ideas. You can scan photographs you already have and print them out on your printer if you don’t want to cut an original photo. Get your camera out and take your own photos even!

3. Now that you have a pile of photographs you can start placing them on your board, you can even create a digital board. Turn on some of your favorite music, make your favorite coffee or cold beverage and begin. Consider adding quotes that inspire and give perspective. Feel free to add or remove photos as you go along. You can use any type of board, or even a picture frame. If you want something to carry along with you, use a small journal book. This would be helpful for party planning, brides, decorating projects and if you want to keep your board private. Don’t get hung up on how perfectly you should align the photos. They can be random or orderly, whatever suits your personality. The goal is to have fun with it and let your creativity roam.

4. Now that you have placed all your pictures on your board don’t hide it in your closet! Place it somewhere prominent in your home. Pick a high traffic visible area, like your bedroom dresser, on a wall in your kitchen or near your computer. Viewing your board frequently will remind you of your priorities, goals and dreams.

5. Chances are your board is an organic thing, meaning it is ever changing. As you find photos of another new decorating idea, that business suit, that photo of someone doing what you want to do, a favorite swimsuit or cool photo of another street in Paris you want to visit add it to your board!

This is also a great project to do with your girlfriends and/or your kids!

If this sounds interesting to you and you’d like to try it along with me, I’m looking for some volunteers to share their creations. You can post your in progress creations on the website and we can all have a little creative fun!!

Doing a little project like this can help us all to follow our heart and Live Our Dreams!!

Check out some examples of Dream / Inspiration boards:

I’m going to end this post by an excerpt of a speech by Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple, addressing the 2004 Stanford graduates and I recently came across, I hope it moves you and much as it has moved me…..

“When I was 17, I read a quote that went something like: “If you live each day as if it were your last, someday you’ll most certainly be right.” It made an impression on me, since then, for the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something”

“Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything – all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.”

You can view the whole speech below….

Steve Jobs’s Commencement Speech at Stanford

Sams salutes Military Families

Great news from Sams Club

Military personnel with proper identification can shop and save on their holiday meals and gifts at Sam’s Club without a membership. The company will also waive its 10 percent non-member service fee. The military open houses will be held Monday, Nov. 17, Monday, Dec. 1 and Monday, Dec. 15 in 598 Sam’s Club locations in the U.S., during regular club hours.

Navy Wife Radio Tues 25 Nov – 10pmET features author Jill Connett and USAA’s J.J. Monanaro

Update:  30 Nov 08 – To order The Green Plate or for more information contact Jill at amy.connett(at)

LIVE Tuesday at 10pmET join us for a new episode of Navy Wife Radio!


USAATuesday- Nov 25th – Thanksgiving Show Today’s show is all about entertaining and preparing for the holidays. We’ll share our Thanksgiving traditions and welcome Jill Connett, author of *The Green Plate*.

Also USAA’s, J.J. Montanaro stops by to give us some tips on budgeting for the Holidays. Join us!

We invite you to join the conversation!

Show Details:

25 Nov 08 – Tuesday 10pm ET

Yahoo IM: Navy Wife Radio

You don’t want to miss this show LIVE! Our call in # is 646-652-4629.

To listen live go to:


Show link:

More on *The Green Plate”:

The Green Plate The Green Plate
by Jill Connett

“Moving is hard. Saying goodbye to friends is hard. Starting over is hard. In Jill Connett’s The Green Plate, discover how a simple plastic plate begins a friendship, helps friends say farewell, and reminds a family that time should not be wasted to know people and enjoy special times with friends and family. A simple act of hospitality, presenting new neighbors with brownies on a green plate, begins a journey of friendship. That same green plate becomes the farewell gift as friends must separate, a symbol of memories as death comes unexpectedly and encouragement to move on in the life of a military family. The Green Plate offers smiles, tears, and inspiration to begin again wherever and whenever the need arises to start over. Enjoy this tribute to hospitality, the military lifestyle, sacrifices, friendships past, and those to come. Jill Connett is from Talladega, Alabama. She teaches school and supports her husband’s military career wherever she and her family live at the time. She truly loves being a military wife and mother. She has loved traveling to new places and meeting new people among the hardships that come with always starting over. She writes, “Thank you to all of my family and friends who have supported us as we’ve moved from place to place. I’m proud of my husband and what he does, and I’m very blessed to be surrounded with people who share and support our adventurous lifestyle. May we have many more adventures to come.” The Green Plate story helps capture the enormous personal burden American military families are bearing today. Meeting US servicemen and servicewomen in the field and their families back home, I’ve always been humbled by their commitment and strength in the face of very real dangers. Jill Connett gives a revealing window into the joys and sadness of life on the homefront. -Jim Sciutto, Senior Foreign Correspondent, ABC News”

32 pages

more info

More on J.J. Montanaro

Joseph “J.J.” Montanaro is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ practitioner. He is a native of Kansas City and earned his bachelor’s degree in Engineering from the United States Military Academy, West Point, N.Y. He holds Series 7, 63, and 65 licenses with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). He is a member of the Financial Planning Association.

Montanaro has 14 years of experience in the financial services industry as a financial planner. Prior to joining USAA in December of 2002, Joseph owned and operated an office as a financial planner. Before entering the financial services industry, Joseph served in the U.S. Army for six years on active duty and is currently a Lieutenant Colonel in the United States Army Reserve.

Outside of work, Joseph enjoys spending time with his wife and three kids. His other interests include running, golf and reading.

For more info on J.J.’s webinar’s visit his webpage. Gives away 20,000 Welcome Home Banners is doing it again! They are giving away 20,000 Welcome Home banners or if you prefer a huge greeting card, all you have to pay is shipping.

buildasign_logo gives away 10,000 Homecoming Banners

These banners will go fast!  Over the summer gave away 10,000 banners in just 3 weeks, so don’t wait….order yours today!!

Details from

What do I need to do to get a jumbo card/banner sent to an APO address?

When you are checking out and entering your shipping information, please select AE in the State/Prov/Reg:* drop down menu (AE will be at the very bottom of the list). Please note that APO orders can take 5-15 business days for delivery after your jumbo card/banner has been printed.
»  When will I receive my jumbo card or banner?
Our normal turn-around time is 8 weeks. If you need your banner or jumbo card sooner, within your shopping cart, you can choose from several delivery options: 6 weeks, 4 weeks, 2 weeks and 1 week. Your shipping and handling charge will be calculated based on your shipping address and delivery option chosen.
»  Will you review my artwork before printing my jumbo card/banner?
No. provides you with several opportunities to review your own artwork by allowing you to open up a “proof” while in the design tool and within your shopping cart. If you upload an image that our system determines may be pixilated or does not meet our quality standards, you will receive a pop-up warning. If you do not have a higher quality image, please feel free to contact our Customer Service Group at 1-800-330-9622 or email us at Please attach your image and sign specifications, such as what material and size sign your image is going to be used for so we can best assist you with your order.
»  How do I get started?
Please visit and select one of the templates (you must place your order via this URL in order to receive the promotion). You can then customize your jumbo card/banner, add to your shopping cart and complete your order all online.
»  What if I want to order more than one banner or jumbo card?
The first jumbo card or banner you add to your cart will be free (you’re only responsible for shipping and handling charges) and each additional 18″X24″ jumbo card is only $7.99 and each additional 2’X4′ or 3’X6′ banner is only $9.99.
»  How many will you give away/how long will the promotion last? is giving away 20,000 banners. The promotion will run until supplies last.
»  What is the difference between unfinished banners and finished?
Unfinished banners are not sewn or grommeted. Finished banners are sewn and grommeted. You have the option to upgrade your banner to include sewing and grommets within the shopping cart for $9.49.
»  What will I need in order to display my banner?
In order to hang your banner, we recommend that you visit our accessories page for a variety of choices, such as bungee cords, zip ties, hanging clips or suction cups. We also offer several different types of banner display stands under the heading “banner accessories”.
»  What if I have any other questions?

Feel free to give us a call at 1-800-330-9622 or contact us at

Recruiting Quote of the Day

“The Marine Corps will make you puke, make you cry, and when that’s over, you’ll be sent to the most miserable, dangerous, godforsaken place on the planet. So let me ask you: Why should I let you join my corps?”

Published: October 31, 2008

My son Zachary was a gangly high-school junior when he casually informed me, in the fall of 2003, that he’d been speaking with military recruiters. “An Army guy, a Navy guy and a marine are coming over,” Zach said. “A parent has to be present because I’m not 18 yet.”

“I’ll be present,” I said. “Don’t worry.”

I wore my best vegan-dyed PEACE T-shirt. I was wary but not too worried. Zach was barely 17, graduation seemed far off still and the notion that he would volunteer was laughable. He didn’t like killing anything, even insects. The sight of blood made him gag. His favorite hobby was napping.

Army Guy turned up with a salesman’s enthusiasm. “How are you, ma’am?” he said to me, and answered himself in the next breath. “Great! Let’s just sit you down here. … ” Soon the couch was covered with glossy brochures detailing the great accommodations at military bases in Italy and Germany, the great medical facilities, the great on-base T.G.I. Friday’s. Zach looked over my shoulder as I examined dreamy photos of Hawaiian bird life and Munich’s museums and beer festivals. “Great opportunities if he likes culture. … ”

“What about the war?” I said.

Continue reading

Navy Wife Radio LIVE tonight 10pmET

Hillary and I are back with a NEW LIVE edition of Navy Wife Radio at 10pmET.  We’d love for you to join us as we will be talking about our week, the election of course, deployments (of course again) and much more.

Click here to listen:

Giving back.

There are so many opportunities to do good in the military community. This website is just one wonderful example of that. What Wendy has provided for the Navy community and the military community at large is wonderful. I have a hunch Wendy does even more than this site and Navy Wife Radio, she just seems like the giving kind of gal. As a matter of fact, most spouses do.

It appears to be a trait of military spouses-by nature we are nurturers, givers, and lend-a-handers. Sure there are spouses who are disconnected from the community and don’t get involved, but those who are involved seem to outnumber them.

So what does “involved” mean? Well, it could be something as simple as attending FRG meetings to acting as a Key Volunteer or unit’s Ombudsman. Other ways to be involved include reaching out to your fellow spouses and military families in their time of need, whether it’s to help with a new baby or a PCS move. I can name so many military spouses who have made a positive impact on my life because of their involvement. They have either led by example in a leadership capacity or shown me the ropes on something unfamiliar to me. The common theme seems to be that of community.

We’ve got each others’ backs. We look out for the greater good. We seek ways to make positive changes in the world and community around us.  Giving back doesn’t have to be in some monumental fashion, it’s the effort that speaks volumes.