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Don’t Trick Me—Milspouse Edition

The best (and by best, I mean most hilarious) lunch I’ve ever had from the commissary was macaroni and cheese. I’ve gotta hand it to these folks, really, because they got me pretty good. Now, if you know me, or have known me for more than five minutes, you know macaroni and cheese is my favorite food. I eat a lot of it and often…a habit I’ve had for years.

So, it was a normal day in Angie-land, and Husband was at the commissary, and I asked him to pick up some lunch and drop it at my office. Deli-counter mac and cheese delivered by my favorite guy? Yes, please! I won’t tell you I had the world’s highest expectations or anything, but maybe that’s where I went wrong. After a short struggle with the shrink wrap, I took my first cheesy bite and instantly knew.

This was not some top-secret recipe from DECA or Freedom’s Choice brand macaroni and cheese. No, sir. This was Stouffer’s mac and cheese! A classic. A favorite. My top choice of frozen dinners. And it was good, great even, down to the last bite.

Plus, you know, now I have a good story about how the commissary fooled me by opening a frozen dinner, microwaving it, re-shrink-wrapping it, adding their own printed label and charging me $4.55 for their efforts. As I said—Best. Commissary. Lunch. Ever.

I hope you laughed or at least chuckled. But seriously, I’ve learned a few things during my milspouse life that didn’t seem all that obvious at first, so here are my “gosh, I wish I knew that sooner” secrets.

1. If you are stationed overseas, you don’t have to have an active contact lens prescription.

Simply keep ordering your current prescription from Nobody’s got time for an eye exam when there’s a language to learn, sights to see, and general “life-in-foreign-country” figuring out to do. Puh-lee-se. Just keep on keeping on with your same lenses prescription for three-ish years. It’s fine…

2. The real reason to keep PCSing is so you can learn how to manage your hair in all types of climates.

Too cold to keep up with your regular wash routine? Rub some cornstarch in. That’s right, I said cornstarch. You can’t be affording dry shampoo when you just shelled out almost five bucks for some Stouffer’s-in-disguise macaroni and cheese.

Too humid? Use a dryer sheet to smooth that frizz down. Yes, ma’am. Everyone loves a head full of smells-like-fresh-laundry hair anyway.

Too windy? Put your hair in braids or under a hat.

Too hot? I don’t know. I’m always cold, but maybe you could just shave your head and bask in bald glory.

3. And another secret for the overseas folks, who just need some comedic relief every now and then.

Reread this quirky post. Just kidding! Shoot an email to the nice people at Cards Against Humanity, and they’ll send you a deck for FREE.

4. Lastly, find a way to laugh.

Truth be told, you are not making it too far in life if you can’t laugh about it.


If you have some tricks, tips, or secrets you’ve gathered, along with a few laughs, during your various milspouse adventures, please share with us in the comments.


  • Angie Andrews

    Angie is a lucky lady. Lucky, and blessed to be a wife and an Army wife to boot. She lives in Japan with her husband and two cats, Hunter and Matthews. Angie and her husband were married in 2013, and he began his military career in 2008. They met in Florida, and Angie hopes they will live off the Gulf Coast within walking distance to the beach one day. Along with the beach, Angie loves to have a good laugh, a good friend, and a good read or write. She has some serious favorites: food—macaroni and cheese, music—Tom Petty, workout—elliptical miles. Angie graduated from UCF with a degree in Elementary Education and taught for seven years, five of those years as a first grade teacher, and the last two as a reading coach. She has a collection of other jobs before and after teaching as well.


  1. Sharita Knobloch

    This is great, Angie– It cracked me up. Sounds about right for the re-packaged mac-n-cheese… I didn’t know those things about living overseas (we haven’t been OCONUS yet).

    As far as living in a hot climate for hair– I have VERY thick hair, and the only solution I found, beside shaving it (because careful that THAT– then you have sunburn issues!) is up in a pony tail allll the time (with a “high pony tail” ball cap” to keep the sun from burning your retinas. Better yet– just stay inside with the air conditioner on road gear 🙂

    Thanks for the grins today. You do such a great job– keep it up!

  2. Angie

    Thank you, Sharita. If you laughed or even smiled, then I did what I meant to do and that is a wonderful thing. I’m glad I got to pass on the OCONUS tips as well. It’s definitely an interesting journey with a lot of learning involved.


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