Well, let's see.
Three years ago my husband and I had one kid, expecting another (8 months along in fact), living off of a little less than $2K a month, in a little 2BR apartment, both having a pretty high chance of getting called up to go to either Iraq or Afghanistan and we we're wondering if he would actually ever get a date to go to active Navy. Oh, and the only insurance we had was high copay med and dental (although the premiums were pretty low). We owned a truck that was over 15 years old, so it had some problems.
Now, he found out his transfer to active duty date around May '09. He makes about the same amount, but we don't have to pay rent or utilities. Plus, since I started school, we also get additional housing money. The family has really low cost med and dental insurance, with little to no copays (military insurance). We have a new car that we can easily afford payments and insurance on. Our house is more than big enough for our family and we can easily afford renter's insurance, plus we have additional safety features with this house that are absolutely wonderful. With the current downsizing going on in Iraq and Afghanistan, the number of IAs going out from the reserves is greatly decreasing, so less chance that I will get IA duty. His job has a decreased chance of having to do IA duty anyway.
Overall, we are doing much better than we were 3 years ago.