I met Kristine at a platoon party ten years ago. During those ten years I have witnessed her commitment to her husband, family, and military families. She volunteered as a battalion KV for several years with 2/7 and was the KV Coordinator for 2/1 while they were in Fallujah. While the KV Coordinator, she was also pregnant with her first child. I was able to observe first-hand how diligent she was while fulfilling this duty. That deployment was one that required the KV Coordinator to be extremely professional and to have an admirable level of compassion; the battalion had over 100 casualties and 20 fatalities. Kristine then went on to found USMC Life, a website designed to assist military families. She has not received any compensation over the three years USMC Life has been in existence, but this has not deterred her from increasing its capability to reach more military families who find the information she provides invaluable. Kristine's tireless dedication is inspiring, and it is with that in mind that I believe she should be at the top of your list of nominations to be considered for Military Spouse of the Year.
Kristine is and inspirational woman.She is a positive woman and always grounded in love of country and Corps. She has developed a wonderful tool for spouses to use, a website called USMClife. It has so much positive usefull information, from where to get a good pizza,where there are good yard salesto where to find medical or mental healt help if needed. . She has been through many hardships and has weathered them with grace and dignity.
My name is Amy Hall and I have been a military spouse for nearly 19 years. I have moved across the country and across the world and have met many different strong and wonderful military spouses throughout the years. Out of all of those spouses, Kristine Shellhaas is my nomination for Outstanding Military Spouse for several different reasons.
As a friend I can tell you that Kristine is kind and generous. She has personally helped me out by watching my children (all 7 of them) on many occasions and almost always on a moment's notice. I have seen her make meals for sick neighbors, bring something by to new mothers, and support families who have just moved to a new duty station.
As a mother, Kristine is loving, patient, and always involved. In Twentynine Palms, California, we were having a terrible time finding preschools that would actually prepare our children for kindergarten. Not accepting this unfortunate situation, Kristine took the initiative and was instrumental in creating a co-op of moms who formed our own preschool.
As a spouse, Kristine is loving, supportive, able to survive long deployments, and always willing to move at a moment’s notice! While her husband was in Fallujah, Kristine volunteered to be the Key Volunteer Coordinator for his battalion. In 2008, after a very personal and dreadful tragedy, Kristine volunteered to be the Key Volunteer Coordinator for Fox Company in Second Battalion, Seventh Marines, one of the hardest hit Marine battalions. During the battalion's deployment to Afghanistan she organized events for all of our spouses, faithfully passed information, and assisted in writing newsletters.
One of Kristine’s biggest accomplishments has been the creation and maintenance of “USMC Life.” USMC Life is an excellent website, blog, and Facebook page dedicated to making life easier for military spouses. USMC Life is a 'go to site' for information about almost everything a military spouse needs to know. Kristine has spent hours setting up this site and currently spends more than 50 hours a week updating the website and adding new information.
It's hard to put in these few words the volunteerism, passion, and flat out love that Kristine has put into everything she has done for our Marines, sailors, and their families. Perhaps one of the best comments I can make about her and the reason I believe she should be nominated as "military spouse of the year" is that she is not only a genuinely nice person, but she never fails to put others before herself.
Tell us why you are nominating this military spouse. Your response can be up to 500 words.
Kristine Shellhaas is not only a wonderful Marine Spouse, she is truly amazing. She embraces her life and challenges with gusto and courage. She has supported her Marine through numerous deployments, including two recent combat deployments. During his last deployment, she delivered their daughter and worked on her Masters degree. She made the best of living on the remote Marine Corps base of 29 Palms, while raising her young children, working on her Masters, and being very active in spouse and family readiness programs. During this very hectic time in Kristine’s life, she noticed a lack of real-time information on the Marine Corps official websites and decided to launch a website of her own , USMC Life, which currently has over 10,000 followers. USMC Life provides an overview of every major Marine Corps base, focusing on base-specific information, military housing and photos, schools, youth programs and sports, getting to and from each installation, and popular links helpful to Marines and their families. It has blogs to spotlight on companies they love, insight on base and family life, military news and more. The site has also proved to be a valuable source for new Marine spouses and fiancés soon to join our military community. Recently, USMC Life launched an internet radio show that is listened to weekly by a following that grows each week. Kristine is a great example of someone who tries to make any situation better, offering her help , insight, and guidance to any spouse she meets. Please consider her for Spouse of the Year.
Kristinne selflessly pours hours upon hours into her website, usmclife.com. She helps countless military spouses and servicemembers by assisting them with their moves to new bases by offering invaluable information about the new bases. This helps with the crazy stess levels that come with PCSing. She also writes blogs that are relevant to military day-to-day life. She was a key volunteer and is devoted to her family.
I'm the founder of USMC Life (www.usmclife.com) where I've incorporated a base-by-base guide for all major Marine Corps bases. There's a ton of resources on the page for families to discover military discounts, benefits from the government and private companies, information and help for newcomers and more. There's a blog made up of other USMC spouses from all ages and backgrounds. Lastly, I'm a co-host of Semper Feisty Radio (www.usmclife.com/radio) where we discuss issues facing military families and life outside the Corps.
Celebrate life with friends and family. We need to take time out of our busy lives to keep our relationships alive.
My husband, who makes me a better person every day. I'm so proud of the work he does. We're blessed that we've lived some great adventures with the Marine Corps and our two kids.
When I don't get a good night's sleep. You know the saying, "People who say they sleep like a baby, usually don't have one".
Being MSOY would be such a great platform to help other military families grow and discover more of the resources available to them. I've learned so much through my last ten years as a USMC Spouse, I love sharing information with others. There's just something so fulfulling in being able to connect others and help families discover that 'one thing', which can make the difference between a successful deployment, finding happiness and more.
I am so proud of being able to connect with over 35,000 readers a month on my website USMC Life (www.usmclife.com) and help other Marine Corps families on their military journey. I know not everyone is going to relate to me or my experiences, so I have created a network of incredible Marine Corps spouses all across the globe who also share their stories. It allows them the opportunity to build their business, share their passions with others and connects people to know they aren't alone out there. I’m blessed that I’ve found a passion that I can take anywhere we’re stationed in the world.
I also want to serve as an example of one who has faced loss and adverstity in life and has moved towards positivity and joy in what remains today. I believe life is what we choose to make of it. We can choose to continue living with pain and sadness or we can find new beginnings in what lies beyond us.
October 20, 2007. My son was one year old when he drowned in his grandparent's swimming pool while I was out shopping for his birthday party. I would love nothing more than to have a complete family, fill the hole in my heart, and introduce him to his little sister. It was the worst day of our lives. Each day I wake up, I strive to make a decision to be there for my children and live our lives to the fullest in his honor.
An education system which helps military spouses with more consistent standards including testing, requirements, school age start dates, and more. I volunteered to the service when I married my husband, but our kids were drafted. I'd like to find a way to make this lifestyle as easy as possible for our little ones. I think we have come a long way by implementing the school liaison officers and bringing about awareness of this issue, but it still needs more work. So many children are losing out by retaking classes, missing elementary school because their birthday are days too late, retaking tests and more. As spouses, we want to make everything as seamless as possible for our kids and this would be one more step in that process.