"What counts in making a happy marriage is not so much
how compatible you are, but how you deal with incompatibility."

-Leo Tolstoy

Care Packages 101

  • Things that are allowed to be Shipped in Care Packages:

  • Crystal Light Drink Mix Singles
  • Dry Non Fat Milk
  • folgers instant coffee singles
  • folgers coffee Glass bottle
  • Hawaiian Punch Drink Mix Singles
  • Lipton Tea Bags
  • propel energy water drink mix singles
  • energy drinks like stacker 2 or 5 hour energy
  • swiss miss hot cocoa
  • Beef Jerky
  • Blue Diamonds Almonds
  • Campbell's Chunky soups Single Serve

  • combos
  • cracker jacks
  • craisins (dried fruit)
  • single serve delmonte fruit cups
  • instant grits
  • power bars
  • protien bars
  • freeze dried ice cream
  • nutri-grain bars
  • Machuran Noodles (bowls, cups, single packets, so on)
  • Oreo Cookies
  • Planters Peanuts
  • pop tarts
  • pringles, pretzels

  • starburst's, chewing gum, altoids
  • twizzler's

  • bars of soap
  • band aids
  • toothpaste
  • halls cough drops
  • headache pills
  • floss
  • toothbrush
  • sanitizer
  • deodorant
  • shaving cream
  • razors
  • pepto bismol
  • heart burn antacids

  • board games
  • deck of cards
  • bug spray
  • batteries
  • chap stick

  • home baked cookies, Brownies. 
  • and any other personalizations  that your loved one might like

  • Mine always has extra comfy socks, because it get real cold in the desert. 

  • "Cakes in a Jar"

  • Easy way
  • 1. Follow the instructions for any cake batter or mix, just like you would if you were making a full cake. I used Betty Crocker Super Moist Yellow Cake.

  • 2. Instead of a cake pan, use wide-mouthed canning jars. Grease the inside of the jars with some oil or pam so that the cake can be "dumped" out to eat.

  • 3. Fill each jar about half-way full with batter. I used 1 cup of batter in my jars and that seemed to be the perfect amount. Nothing over-flowed.

  • 4. Bake the jars in the oven as per the instructions on the box. As a rule of thumb cakes will take about 15 minutes less than the box instructions for a 9 x 13.

  • My instructions said 33-39 minutes and overall I left mine in for about 20 minutes. Also, put the jars in a cake pan just to catch any possible over flow, plus it makes it easier to get them in and out (you might want to bake one by itself as a test). 

  • now for all of you who are avid Baker's i like to use my husband's favorite recipe's, like for instance he likes home made lemon cake, and yellow cake.

  • THEMES!!!:

  • New Baby:
  • A "Its A Boy/Girl" birth announcement card, candy pacifiers, baby bottles filled with candy, baby wipes (which they need), baby lotion, baby powder small stuffed animal, bubble gum cigars, baby boy stuffed bear, cheerios, Gerber Graduates - Banana Cereal Snackin' Squares, Veggie Crackers, Veggie Wagon Wheels, Fruit Juice Snacks, Cereal Bars, Johnson's Take Along toiletry pack, Sugar Babies, Milk Duds, Sour Patch Kids, Mini sweet tarts, Jerky Steak Bites - for teething, and can of powdered pink lemonade[Now I realize blue kool aid would have been more appropriate] (printed a new label - Baby Soldier Formula - Caution - use of this product may cause baby to require less sleep than normal babies, ability to sleep anywhere, develops strong patriotism, etc., and a disposable camera to record his rapid growth

  • Crazy for cookies
  • Any type of cookie in the cookie aisle Would be great during the holidays.

  • From the local zoo
  • animal crackers, peanuts, peanut butter from the elephants, beef jerky from the lions, dried banana chips from the chimps, trail mix from the birds ,Hostess Snowballs from the polar bears, tuna from the seals, postcards, stuffed animals or plastic zoo animals

  • You got the “write” stuff
  • pens, pencils, markers, stationary, envelopes, your own letters of encouragement, phone card, blank greeting cards, post cards, hand made cards, gel pens, stickers, sheet of computer printed return labels

  • Sweet Dreams package
  • cookies, hot chocolate, tea, pillow, powdered milk, book, small reading light, marshmallows (for the choc), mug

  • Fiesta theme
  • Margarita drink mix, Pina colada mix, lemonade, Salsa, Torango Chips (in a triangluar pringles type can), cheese in a jar (found in chips isle), hot tamales candy, Fire Balls candy, Red, green, yellow balloons, Chili peppers (canned), Refried beans, taco or fajita seasoning, tobasco Sauce, pinata (filled with candy),Taco Bell sauce packets

  • Lets Play Ball
  • baseballs, peanuts, major league gum, sunflowers, baseball cards, baseball hat, shreaded beef jerky (looks like snuff), sunglasses, popcorn, fake beer (near beer?), Cracker Jacks and a pennant from a hometown team, game day programs, stats on teams and players

  • Brain Teasers
  • those little games you get at parties and you have to put those little balls in the holes, crossword puzzles, puzzles, those puzzles that are small and metal and you have to take them apart and then put back together, rubiks cube, travel size games of checkers and chess

  • Emeril of Iraq ( or other place ):
  • all kinds of hot nuts and sauces and spices, Sun-dried tomatoes, dried shitake mushrooms olive oil, minced garlic (jar), balsamic vinegar, dry rub spices, marinades, specialty oils pesto, capers, anything from Emeril's food product line (esp BAM! essence), perhaps some grilling utensils (spatula, tongs, etc), Emeril recipes/cookbook (Every Day's A arty sounds like a fun one) napkins, coasters, etc from his restaurants in New Orleans, Las Vegas, or Orlando

Under the Sea
  • anything with Sponge Bob? Fish shaped crackers, salt packets, Blue colored Kool Aid, shark gummies, swedish fish, little game that has those fish going around and you have to fish for them? Goldfish game cards, At Oriental Trading company you can buy those toy fish. Maybe a Go Fish game. Tuna, those Sea Monkeys you add water to and they grow. Maybe the crystals you add water too and they grow to resemble underwater coral growths, How about one of the medium sized Conk seashells so he could hear the ocean? Salt water taffey is always a hit too

Breakfast on the Go
  • individual packages of cereal, instant oatmeal, trail mix, hot chocolate, coffee, mug, chex morning mix, donuts, Pop Tarts, cereal bars

You Stink 
soap, deoderent, socks, laundry soap tablets, air fresheners, Foot powder, Odor eaters, baby powder, Fabreeze, baby wipes, new undies, tee shirts, whoopee cushion

Big Cheese/Promotion Box
  • Cheese curls, cheese balls, cheese flavored chips, cheese Doritos, cheese popcorn, cheese and crackers, cheese flavored crackers, tubs of cheese spread, cheesy instant mashed potatoes

Jamaica in a Box
  • Jerk Seasoning for their MRE's, Bob Marley posters and CD's, sand bucket and shovel (They have all the sand they need there), travel magazines from Jamaica Some beach towels with board games like twister, checkers on them, sunglasses, tropical fruits (since you can't send fresh fruits, he thought either the canned ones or dried fruits) pictures of the Jamaican countryside we took, little tropical things like palm trees, fish, etc that you can get fro   m Oriental Trading Company postcards from Jamaica, sunscreen one of those hats with dread locks attached, translation guide on how to speak Jamaican or Patois as it's called there, a Jamaican Flag with an explanation on what the colors mean
Sun Tea:
  • Get one of those plastic 2qt jugs with the handles and the push button spout.. fill the inside of the jug with tea bags, sugars and sweet and lows and see about finding a restraunt that carries those little packets of real lemon...or even include a few real lemons??? Include a spoon and some cups...
  • or
  • Celestial Seasonings 'summer tea' bags that you use with cold water....hubby seems to like these real well....I also found on an end cap at wallyworld sample size for 25cents that came 4 bags in each pouch...we used these in our platoon packages this last shipment. ~

Pool/Sand Party:
  • a burnt cd with the 'beach boys' or any other group singing about...summer time fun... beach ball, squirt guns--water balloons--ummmm, koolaid and those little paper umbrellas, several different types of "water bombs" that you soak in water and toss around, footballs, vollyballs, sand toys, those velcro pads you wear on a hand & the balls that stick to them. bunch of beach towels, , chapstick, bottles of aloe vera, Beach Towel board games(Twister, Checkers & Tic, Tac Toe), hacky sacks, insect repellent, plastic baseball bat and ball sunflower seeds, buckets and shovels(to build sand castles), soft-sided cooler plastic Trucks to play in the sand with, croquet game, kiddie blow up pool, ice tea, lemonade, sunglasses, sunscreen
  • Macadamia nuts, coconut creme cookies, Kona coffee, sugar in the raw packets, photos/cards with Hawaiian scenery, go to orientaltrading.com they have a TON of Hawaiian things like paper palm trees, grass hula skirts, leis, coconut novelties, tropical staws w/ palm trees, flamingos, pineapples, etc. pineapple chunks, 'hawaiian tropic lotion smell', Hawaiian punch juice boxes, sun glasses, pina colada drink mixes, bag of seashells, line the box with tropical themed wrapping paper, Hawaiian girl car ornament, inflatable fish, sharks, palm trees, Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition, Dole tropical fruit cups, dried mango, papaya and pineapple, those Loreal Kids Shampoo in fish shaped containers, teriyaki chicken and beef nuggets, Barbie dolls dressed in bikinis, colorful flip flops
Kick back and have some fun: Dominoes, playing cards, magazines, books, music CD's, those relaxation CD(the ones with sounds of waves, etc), crossword puzzles, word searches,jig saw puzzles, hand-held electronic games, squirt guns, water balloons, bubbles, hacky sacks, nerf Balls, jokes and funny pictures and cartoons

Going Nuts/Hang In There Package 
  • banana chips, barrel of monkey game, I think Little Debbie makes some Curious George Banana Twin cakes, Bath & Body Works has some Kids Bananarama wipes, all kinds of nuts - carmel corn with nuts, peanut butter, peanut butter crackers, baby ruth, snickers, almond joy, planters bars, peanut brittle, Peanut - Almond or Peanut Butter M&M's, all flavored corn nuts

Cold Season
  • some cough drops, kleenex, tea, instant noodle soup, hot chocolate, get well card phone card to call MOMMY

Poker Party:
  • Poker chips and cards... for snacks so far I have pizza, cheese and bbq pringles, sunflower seeds, tobasco flavored microwave popcorn (found at dollar store)... and since I have read of people being successful sending cans - I am going to send O'Douls non-alcoholic beer in ziplocks and bubble wrap. maybe send cheese/cracker snack packs with Pepperoni pieces, chips and dips, salsa, pretzels, shelled peanuts, dice, play money, dealer visors and a lucky rabbits foot and shot glasses, felt to play on, Crackers & Pub cheese or velveeta (no refridge req'd kind), beef summer sausage, salami, or pepperoni, drink mixes (Bloody Mary, Margarita, etc - for virgin drinks), Gatorade or iced tea powder some kind of multicolor hard candies (in case they run out of chips, chocolate - Tasteations or Nips or equiv. for the summer, men's magazines, CDs/Music & batteries, cards, chips, dice , cigars/cigarellos - the real ones - recommend Black-n-Mild - they're pretty cheap, bubble gum cigars & candy cigarettes - for those that don't want the above, party-themed napkins/plates/decor

Salute to the Heroes bag of toy soldiers, donuts, water guns, small black flashlight, there are some fire stations that will give a t-shirt to another fireman in a different area that may be visiting, maybe if you explain what you are doing they may give you a t-shirt from their station a St. George Medal. St. George is the Patron Saint of the Military. The inscription on the back reads: "Keep us safe, day and night. Give us courage, strength and might."

Warm Them Up
  • Hot Tamales, flamin hot Cheetos,hot sauce, hot nuts,cajun spices,Fritos and Jalapeno Dip, Atomic Fire Balls, Cinnamon Gum, Red Hots, Hot-Flavored Planters Peanuts, Mini bottles of hot sauce, Cinnamon TicTacs, IcyHot Sore Muscle Rub, Crystal Lite Iced Tea, Andy Capp Red Hot Fries, Jalapeno Jelly Belly Beans, a Hot Rod magazine and Tums,Icy/Hot Cream

and Cool Them Down:
  • A few of Angel's chilly willys squirt guns (forgot to put them in the bday box - space cadet!) Fan/Mister & Batteries Dentyne Ice & Koolerz gum IceBreakers mint tin Lemonade Drink Mix SnowBall cakes Cool Ranch Doritos Sunglasses (also forgot to put them in bday box - I must get organized!) water bottle "wet suit" candy ice cream cone thing-a-ma-jigs

American A-Z
  • A- Individual Apple Pies
  •  B-Baseball: Plastic or nerf baseball and bat 
  • C- cotton candy in a bag, chocolate chip cookies, 
  • D- Ding Dong Hostess Cakes 
  • E- F- Flags, Nerf Footballs, 
  • G-Gatorade powder 
  • H- Hot Dogs(Vienna Sausages(chicken)) 
  • I-Ice Cream -The astronaut Ice Cream someone else mentioned 
  • J- Jokes, jelly bean ( red white and blue ) 
  • K- Kool Aide mix, Kellog’s cereals
  • L- M- mac n cheese 
  • N- O- Oreos 
  • P- poker cards/chips,phone card to call home, Mr Potato Head, popcorn 
  • Q- Q-tips 
  • R- Racing: Die Cast Cars, Schedules from Race Tracks, Ritz crackers 
  • S-Sunflower Seeds, Soldiers (Toy Soldiers), slinky 
  • T- tea for sun tea, twinkies, taco bell sauce 
  • U-Unity: Photos showing people's support of our soldiers(signs in yards, etc) 
  • V-volley ball and net 
  • W- watermelon flavored hard candy 
  • X-Y- yo yos, yellow mustard 
  • Z- zingers

    • "Tucked inside this little bag
    • When your spirits are starting to sag
    • Are some little reminders that I care
    • As you fight for freedom over there."

    • Toothpick: To help you pick out the good in every situation you encounter.
    • Hugs and Kisses(Hershey's Hugs and Kisses): Because sometimes we all need a "hug and kiss"
    • Paperclip: to help you "keep it together" when it all seems to be hitting the fan.
    • Marble: To replace "the ones we all lose" from time to time.
    • Snickers: To remind you to "laugh" even when you feel like crying.
    • Rubber Band: To help you be flexible and "bounce back" in times of trouble without breaking.
    • Stick of Gum: To remind you to "stick" with the task at hand.
    • Mint: To let you know you're worth a "mint" to me.
    • Cotton Ball: To help "cushion" the rough times.
    • Lollipop: To help you "lick" the problems you encounter.
    • Star Burst: To let you know I'm "bursting" with pride for you.
    • Nut: To remind you to relax and get a little "nutty" sometimes.
    • Tootsie Roll: To remind you of the important "roll" you play.
    • Lifesaver: To signify the "lifesaving" things you do to keep our country free. 

    • Themed Care Package Ideas for US Military 
    • C 2004 Army Wife Talk Radio
    • Movie Care Package:
    • Movie (DVD or VHS)
    • Microwave Popcorn (or already popped if they don't have access)
    • M&Ms
    • Doritos
    • Cracker Jacks
    • Rice Krispie Treats
    • Twizzlers
    • Cookies (Oreos and Chips Ahoy)
    • Ruffles Chips & Dip
    • Hot Tamales
    • Nachos (Tortilla chips & cheese)
    • Make a "Now Featuring" Movie "Poster" on your computer and add it to the package
    • Get Well Package:

    • Puzzle
    • Chicken Noodle Soup Packets
    • Gourmet Tea Packets
    • Cold Medicine
    • Crackers
    • Inspirational "Get Well" Quotes
    • Goldfish
    • Dole Fruit Cups
    • Get Well "Pills" (candy coated mints)
    • Get Well Card
    • Chapstick
    • A&D ointment
    • At Ease Package:

    • Glow in the dark yo yo
    • Crossword Puzzle Book
    • Silly Putty
    • Deck of Cards
    • Ritz Bitz
    • Pringles
    • Cookies
    • Twizzlers
    • Cheetos
    • Cereal Bars
    • "Scruff" Care Package

    • Razors
    • Baby Wipes
    • Chapstick
    • Shaving Cream
    • Deodorant
    • Mouthwash
    • Lotion (if soldier is female step it up a notch and do something SPA line)
    • Foot Powder
    • Shampoo & Conditioner
    • Soap
    • Big Fluffy Towel
    • Toilet Paper
    • Shoe Polish
    Comforts of Home Package:

    • Small Bottle of Febreeze
    • Candle
    • Snuggle Dryer Sheets
    • Phone Card
    • Blanket (A nice comfy one)
    • Glade Stick Ups
    • Pair of Slippers or Cozy Socks
    • Hot Cocoa or Coffe
    • Decorative Coffee Mug
    • Pillowcase with your perfume/cologne sprayed on it
    • Book on Tape
    "Big Kid" Package:

    • Squirt Guns
    • Silly Putty
    • Silly String
    • Whoopie Cushion
    • Funny Face Eyeglasses
    • Sidewalk Chalk
    • Crayons & Color Book
    • Jacks
    • Marbles
    • Balloons
    • Frisbee
    • Football/Soccer Ball (mini)
    • Hacky Sack
    Holiday Themed Packages

    • Fill any package with holiday themed ideas and use things like tissue paper, balloons, confetti etc. to decorate it!

    Bath Package

    • Gel eye-pack
    • Shower Gel
    • Shower Flip-Flops
    • Aroma therapy oils
    • Scented candles and holders
    • Pumice stone
    • Washcloths, scrubber or loofa sponge
    • Back cleaning brush
    • Relaxing music on CD or cassette
    • Rubber ducky
    Write Home Package

    • Note paper or cards
    • Envelopes (choose a variety of sizes)
    • Letter opener
    • Nice Pen or Pencil
    • Address Labels
    • Address Book
    Sports Theme Package

    • Favorite Sport Magazine
    • Taped TV or DVD of favorite sport
    • Cheetos
    • Popcorn
    • Personalized Mug
    • Cookies
    "A Day At Home" Package

    • There are several variations of this package. The idea is to replicate a day with you. First, you'll need a camera. Take pictures of each thing you do. Use your creativity here are a few ideas:

    • We woke up (take a picture in bed) and ate breakfast (take a picture eating cereal) and then took a shower (take picture in towel). We started the day off by doing some yard work and mowing the lawn (take picture mowing lawn). After our work, we had lunch (take picture with lunch). Then we colored pictures - or threw around a football etc. (take pictures doing activity). We all ate dinner together (take picture having dinner). We had a full day so we were tired when it was time to set down and watch our favorite TV programs (take picture watching TV). Later we snuggled up in our jammies (take picture in jammies) and had a nighttime snack (take picture snacking). We love you very much and miss you! (send picture of kiss goodnight)

    • Now take all of your pictures (referencing above) and send them with "treats"

    • Pillowcase with cologne/perfume sprayed or maybe a decorated one
    • Several small boxes of cereal or cereal bars
    • Shower Gel or Shampoo or even a towel
    • Grass Clippings in a baggie or dirt from backyard (strange but reminds them of home)
    • Color Books or Football
    • Lunch Snacks
    • New Pajamas
    • Popcorn
    • Recorded TV show or movie DVD
    • Hershey's Kisses