A family member’s deployment can be a difficult time for many military families.

There are some ways to make things a little easier on everyone involved, however.

In part 1 of 2, we’ll take a look at the first five steps.

Step one – take pictures.

This is as much for the service member as it is the people staying home.

Step two, talk to each other about concerns and fears.

Make a list if that’s easier, but just be sure to be honest and acknowledge a difficult situation.

When it comes to lists, an emergency contact list is equally important.

So too is walking through your home, making sure everyone has a basic understanding of things like fuse boxes and shut-off valves.

Lastly, make an emergency kit for the house as recommended by the Red Cross.

Deploying service members will feel better knowing everyone is safe.