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A Care Package for a Sailor

Updated on August 22, 2014

Sending Great Care Packages to Your Sailor

My husband and I had fun sending care packages to our son who served on the USS Nimitz. We always sent care packages with enough to share.

Our son said his friends liked to see what was in the box and speculate and make comments as to why we sent this or that. It breaks up the monotony and everyone enjoys it. It is a little morale booster. Of course care packages aren't just for sailors. Your soldier, marine, coastie, airman or college student would enjoy them too!

What to Include in the Care Package?

What Treats Does Your Sailor Like?

Now we get to the fun part. First of all we sent things that we knew our son liked. It might be Goldfish Crackers, Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, Dutch Peppermints, Duplex Cookies or Almond Roca.

Secondly, we looked for items that might have a little entertainment value. Everyone loved the Dutch Peppermints and made jokes about them, so we sent those a few times. Once we sent Jelly Belly Belly Flops. These are imperfect Jelly Bellies that might be the wrong color for their flavor or it might be two stuck together. They had fun with those.

Once we sent a bunch of boxes of atomic fire balls. They had contests with those to see how many they could fit in their mouths. Probably the favorite thing was some Red Velvet cookies from a grocery store bakery. Amazingly, they made it all the way to the middle east in good shape and the sailors loved them. They asked us to send them again and we even got thank you notes about those cookies. There were also comments about not fitting into their coveralls. ;-)

The next thing is that it can't be anything too big that he has to store. There simply is no room. He grabs what he wants out of the box and shares the rest. Nothing to store!

One place we like to shop is the Grocery Outlet store. They have great prices and they have items that you might not see at the regular grocery store. We often find unusual things there, like the gummy mouths that included tongues....and teeth.

Trader Joes is another favorite shopping place. They have great treats there including chocolate covered almonds, English toffee and lots of different candies, cookies and crackers. We shopped here when he was on the East Coast in the winter. You don't want to send chocolate overseas when it's hot.

A Care Package from Home - Cookies, Gum, and Crackers

Mints for a Care Package
Mints for a Care Package

Here's a few of the things going into the next care package. Fortune cookies, gum, Starbucks chocolate, and Annie's Cheddar Bunnies. Update: This care package was sent when the ship was stateside and it wasn't hot. Chocolate should not go overseas.

Photo property of Dianne Loomos

Kasseri Cheese

A little piece of home. Not for when they are in hot climates.

Not for hot climates!

Nick likes Kasseri cheese which is a Greek cheese and not always widely available. While stationed in New York, he was putting in 12 hour days and didn't have the time or inclination to do much grocery shopping. I froze a couple of wedges of Kasseri cheese overnight and packed it up early in the morning on a Monday, took it to the post office and sent it priority mail. He received it in a couple of days and it was fine. It was like a little piece of home for him.

For New Years I sent two boxes of crackers, two summer sausages and 3 packages of cheese. They arrived in good shape but I wouldn't do that in hot weather.

Sometimes it takes me a while to put together a care package. I will get a box ready and then as I see things I think will be appreciated I'll buy them and put them in the box. When I have enough to fill it I tape it up and send it. It is usually good to send things that are not too perishable. I won't send something like cheese if I know that he is out to sea for sea trials or if it is a long term deployment.

Photo property of Dianne Loomos

TV Shows on DVD

Movies too!

Most sailors take some things to keep them from being bored while at sea. TV shows are great for keeping boredom away! Think about what TV shows or movies your sailor likes and include the DVD in a care package. The sailors in the same berthing will share what shows they have so it will be put to good use and help keep the boredom away. This goes for movies too.

T-Shirts and Underwear

Practical Items for a Care Package.

Update: One of my readers says that they now wear blue shirts under their coveralls. Be sure to check with your sailor for the proper kind of shirt to send.

My son said that on one of their underways there was a problem with the water and no one could do laundry. The onboard store quickly sold out of white t-shirts so a lot of sailors had no clean t-shirts, which they are required to wear.

Navy for Moms recommends sending white t-shirts, socks and underwear because the sailors need these things and sometimes can't get them. Make sure you know your sailor's sizes so you can send these things if necessary.

Crystal Light On the Go - A Handy Care Package Item

Crystal Light Drink Mix, Classic Orange With Vitamin C & Calcium, On The Go Packets, 10 Count (Pack of 6 Boxes)
Crystal Light Drink Mix, Classic Orange With Vitamin C & Calcium, On The Go Packets, 10 Count (Pack of 6 Boxes)

Sugar-free, orange flavored drink mix that turns water into a flavorful, low-calorie soft drink

90% less calories than leading soft drinks; provides 100% daily value of vitamin C; a good source of calcium

Individual packets; just add to your bottled water and shake

Offers all the benefits of water plus a refreshing light taste

 

The Three Month Slump

Send something fun!

I've heard that about three months into a long deployment, morale begins to sink. This would be a good time to send some great care packages from home. Ask your sailor what they would like to receive. Chips and dips are popular as is jerky, energy drinks, candy and cookies.

You never know what you might find at the dollar store that would be fun. We found a bunch of glow stick type things once in time for New Years. I've heard that squirt guns and toy airplanes are fun.

A Word About Packing Materials

Bubble wrap is lightweight and is not messy like styrofoam peanuts. The recipient of your care package will appreciate the fact that they won't have to clean up a static charged mess of styro peanuts. If you have styrofoam peanuts that you want to use up, tie them in plastic grocery bags and use them that way. It makes it easier to clean up.

Packing materials can be expensive. On occasion I have picked up a big bag or box of packing peanuts or bubble wrap for free on Freecycle. You can use air pillows too.

Many times I would buy individually wrapped hard candy to use as packing material. It will fill up the holes so things don't slide around AND it's an additional treat.

I recommend Scotch brand packing/shipping tape. You can buy cheaper tapes but I think it ends up costing more. Cheap tape tears and sticks to itself and I end up throwing a lot of it away. I like the Scotch brand tape as it's very sturdy.

Priority Mail for Care Packages

Free Priority Mail Boxes and a Military Discount

Did you know that you can get free boxes for mailing care packages? You can pick them up at the post office or you can order them from usps.com and they will be delivered to your door. I like the large flat rate one. It costs the same no matter how heavy it is. It's an economical way to send care packages to your loved one in the military.

It's a good idea to pay a visit to your local post office where you'll be mailing your care packages. You can see what supplies they have and they'll be able to answer any questions you might have.

Customs Forms

For sending your care package to an APO or FPO address.

If you are sending a package to a person overseas you will need a CUSTOMS FORM . This is another thing that you can pick up at the post office or you can order them online for no charge. You can fill it out online but I did this once and it took 5 sheets of paper, so I decided it was better to get the forms at the post office and fill them out by hand. If you are unsure which form to use just ask at the post office and they will know. Ask them to give you a few to keep on hand and then you can fill it out at home before you take your package to the post office. This makes it easier.

INDIAN OCEAN (October 1, 2009) Logistics Specialist 1st Class Dayon Banks sorts through mail in the hangar bay of the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz (CVN 68) after a replenishment at sea with the fast combat support ship USNS Bridge (T-AOE 10).

The Nimitz Moms group on Navy for Moms (navyformoms.com) took on the task of sending a stocking or goodie bag to every sailor in Carrier Strike Group 11 for Christmas 2009. They had their deployment extended by two months and wouldn't be home for Christmas that year. Groups around the country volunteered to help us. Realtors, churches, Boy Scouts, Wal-Marts, school children, VFWs, American Legions, Moose Lodges, Elks Lodges and others volunteered to make cards or send us donations of cash or goods. It is heartwarming to see so many Americans willing to help the Nimitz Family make Christmas a little cheerier for our sailors.

Update: This has become an annual project now. The moms from Navy for Moms adopt which ever carrier group is deployed at Christmas time and every sailor gets a goodie bag and a card.

32,000 Pounds of Mail - Hangar Deck, USS Eisenhower

Mail on the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower
Mail on the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower

Here is a pile of 32,000 pounds of mail in the hangar deck of the USS Eisenhower. You can see why you want to make sure you have sturdy packaging. What if your care package is on the bottom of that pile? Also you will note that this mail was delivered while the Eisenhower was in the Arabian Sea. If your sailor is in the Arabian Sea, the Persian Gulf or any other hot location, make sure that you do not send chocolate or anything else that will melt or is perishable. Chocolate is a popular care package item but the sailors are told to inform their loved ones not to send it because it will melt. It then leaks out of the box and ruins other people's care packages.

ARABIAN SEA (April 23, 2009) - Sailors aboard aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower sort 32,000 pounds of mail during a replenishment at sea.

It seems that I am always the designated care package sender. That's ok because it is something I enjoy. Do you send out care packages? Who do you send them to?

Who do you send care packages to?

See results

When your sailor comes home

don't forget

Welcome Home T-Shirts

from Welcome Home Navy.

Welcome Home USS Nimitz

America Welcomes You Home!

Welcome Home Navy has Welcome Home shirts for every aircraft carrier and for some other ships as well. If you want a shirt that I don't have in my store please let me know and I'll make it for you. Leave a comment here on this page or contact me through the contact button on my profile page.

What do you send in your care packages?

Do you send out care packages? - A Care Package for a Sailor, Soldier, Marine, Coastie, or any loved one.

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    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      this is a awesome site! i have sent many packages for my dad while he was in the navy and now i get to send them to my coastie husband. keep in mind guys u can not send pornographic material of any kind. u will get ur person in a lot of trouble. and sending burned movies is a great idea that they can watch and share with the crew and not have to worry about damage or getting it back. burn ur movies at home and send them a copy to watch and share.

    • profile image

      chickie99 4 years ago

      this is a superb lens!

      thanks to all those who courageously serve in our armed forces!

    • profile image

      CapnFatz 4 years ago

      @anonymous: Actually, geedunk refers to both.

    • Virginia Allain profile image

      Virginia Allain 5 years ago from Central Florida

      I remember sending my brother care packages when he was in the army during the Vietnam era. He says mail of any sort is a morale booster for homesick soldiers.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Nice to come back her to sprinkle a little angel dust on this lens. My Dad was a Navy man, and I know those care packages mean so much for those on board ships for long periods of time. - God Bless all the Sailors!

    • profile image

      Ruthi 5 years ago

      Sending care packages to those who serve our country is a grand idea throughout the year. It is always good to show our military men and women that we care and carefully selecting some gifts from home is a good way of letting them know we appreciate their service.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      A gee dunk is a vending machine not a store of junk food. But a care package is not just about non perishable food, it's what they ripen out on a ship (basic necessities). Like: body wash, toothpaste, detergent, black socks, navy blue undershirts, toothpaste, etc.

    • tonybonura profile image

      Tony Bonura 5 years ago from Tickfaw, Louisiana

      I used to love getting care packages when I was in the Air Force. So did everyone else in my barracks. We all shared as far as they would go, so be sure to send a lot of stuff.

      TonyB

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Marvelous lens. A friend of mine is in the Navy, you've given me some food for thought!

    • MrMojo01 profile image

      MrMojo01 5 years ago

      Great lens! My buddy is in the army and when he was in Iraq I would send books to help kill the time.

    • Dianne Loomos profile image
      Author

      Dianne Loomos 5 years ago

      @catmaxx: Thank you for your service and for encouraging people to send care packages. They are appreciated indeed!

    • Dianne Loomos profile image
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      Dianne Loomos 5 years ago

      @squidoopets: Care packages are always appreciated!

    • Dianne Loomos profile image
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      Dianne Loomos 5 years ago

      @MrsKatieE LM: Such a cool story!

    • MrsKatieE LM profile image

      MrsKatieE LM 5 years ago

      Thank you for all the tips for care packages. While I was in college my best friend was stationed in Germany and did 2 tours in Iraq. My girlfriends always had fun helping me choose items. Socks were an often requested item from my Army Infantry friend. We would take them out of the package and stuff a couple with candy and random treats. If there was no more room we would use the extra socks as packing material. It was fun, and my army infantry friend actually ended up marrying one of the girls who helped me pack the boxes.

    • profile image

      RuralFloridaLiving 5 years ago

      Yes - many!

    • squidoopets profile image

      Darcie French 5 years ago from Abbotsford, BC

      I have not yet given a care package. I really like the idea of making one for my teenage daughter who has moved out to her own place. Could send a thoughtful gift like this for anything. :)

    • catmaxx profile image

      Terry Lomax 5 years ago from Rep. of Ireland

      I don't send care packages, but as an ex-sailor (R.N.) I know very well how appreciated they are, I served on 2 aircraft carriers in the '70s, away for anything up to 9 months.My daughter was 6 weeks old before I first saw her. A great lens, all you navy spouses out there, anything from home and loved ones is priceless to a sailor.

    • betsy-wooters profile image

      betsy-wooters 5 years ago

      Thanks so much for sharing this. I have send a are package to troops on my boys ummer bucket list and this will be a greathelp n giving themidas on what to send. I'm going to check out anysoldier.com also.

    • profile image

      Joan4 5 years ago

      Great ideas for care packages! I would never have thought to send the Crystal Lite! Super idea!

    • Winter52 LM profile image

      Winter52 LM 5 years ago

      Most impressive... I don't think that there was one thing in that "care package" that I didn't like but it was the jelly beans that grabbed my attention!

    • profile image

      aishu19 5 years ago

      Care packages from home certainly would make a sailor's day. Such a relief to see so many people doing this from them. its when they are away that even a Reese sounds like a golden nugget :)Great way to cheer them up.

    • Sylvestermouse profile image

      Cynthia Sylvestermouse 5 years ago from United States

      These are great suggestions!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      My community does a book campaign for soldiers. They have a list of what books their soldiers like. People donate books and the organization matches the donated books to the soldiers. We've also sent them like frisbees or balls for their free time. It's those tiny comforts of home that makes it bearable.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Omg this was so helpful! I'm send my very first care package to my sailor! I was freaking out and now I'm excited :)

    • Dianne Loomos profile image
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      Dianne Loomos 5 years ago

      @Bill Armstrong: God bless you and your dear mom, Wee Maggie.

    • Dianne Loomos profile image
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      Dianne Loomos 5 years ago

      @OhMe: Thank you Nancy, I will!

    • Bill Armstrong profile image

      Bill Armstrong 5 years ago from Valencia, California

      I just love Mothers like you...your care packages to your son is a very cherished gift, I know, I received them from my Mum when I was in the Falklands and there was never a more welcome sight..we love them ;) Great lens, hope more read this and realize how valuable this is to our boys, thanks for sharing. By the way, Wee Maggie (My Mum) still sends over small little care packages to me here in California:)

    • OhMe profile image

      Nancy Tate Hellams 5 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      Wonderful information for sending Care Packages to a Sailor. Please tell your son Thank You for serving our country.

    • Dianne Loomos profile image
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      Dianne Loomos 5 years ago

      @anonymous: Thanks for the update! I hadn't heard this. :-)

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Fantastic information. I recently sent my husband and his shop some Cakes baked in Jars. He hasn't received them yet, but I've seen them raved about on other sites.

      Also, note: We now wear blue t-shirts under our coveralls. So that'd be good to update for people wanting to send extra daily wear t-shirts, if they don't already know.

    • profile image

      BeddingHQ 5 years ago

      Cool I'm totally going to do this!

    • Dianne Loomos profile image
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      Dianne Loomos 5 years ago

      @anonymous: Natasha, sounds like some very thoughtful things to send, tailored especially for him.

    • Dianne Loomos profile image
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      Dianne Loomos 5 years ago

      @snazzify lm: Thank you!

    • Dianne Loomos profile image
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      Dianne Loomos 5 years ago

      @anonymous: A belated thank you!

    • Dianne Loomos profile image
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      Dianne Loomos 5 years ago

      @Countryluthier: My thanks to your son!

    • Dianne Loomos profile image
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      Dianne Loomos 5 years ago

      @anonymous: Connie, thanks for these great suggestions!

    • Dianne Loomos profile image
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      Dianne Loomos 5 years ago

      @bigjoe2121: That's what my husband said too!

    • Dianne Loomos profile image
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      Dianne Loomos 5 years ago

      @anonymous: I'm glad this was helpful!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      These suggestions have been extremely helpful for me a first time care package sender. Thank you so very much!

    • bigjoe2121 profile image

      bigjoe2121 5 years ago

      In the army we called geedunk pogey bait :)

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Some suggestions if you are sending out to sailors. My son is on the USS Abraham Lincoln and we are sending out 30 plus packages to one of the Engineer departments. A very needed item is black ankle socks. They can not get these on the ship and this deployment just extended from 4 months to 10. Items we are sending and that were requested from them (for ladies of course femine hygiene pdts) Everyone: Any prepackaged cookies, rice crispy treats, granola bars, protein bars, snack trail mix, gum/candy, drink mix like 4c Tea , energy mix, crystal light (cheaper at Family Dollar Store like 8 pouches for 1.00 name brand, vitamins (all) jerky of course, (we are making ours to send, cheaper) top ramen in cup/macaroni microwavable, popcorn, antibacterial wipes, hand sanitizer (NO homebaked goods for overseas since its usually mush or taste bad once they get. we are on facebook projectsailorcvn72 if you have any questions I am on facebook Connie Burnette Miami, FL

    • angelsigh profile image

      angelsigh 5 years ago

      My son is a sailor and will be going on his first deployment soon. I will make sure to get a list from him so I can just send them out eery few weeks or so. Thank you for your lens :)

    • Countryluthier profile image

      E L Seaton 5 years ago from Virginia

      You certainly know your care packages parent of a real squid. We have that in common. Our son is a navy member and I know he appreciated care packages across 7 months. Great lens with tempting stuff!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Sending care packages is a great way to show our support to the troops. Blessed!

    • snazzify lm profile image

      Katie Harp 5 years ago

      great lens! blessed by a squid angel :) <3

    • BoyScoutPopcorn profile image

      BoyScoutPopcorn 6 years ago

      My dad enjoyed care packages when he was in the military, but now he's retired. We try to give back to the military through my Boy Scout Popcorn for the Troops fundraising during the Scouting popcorn sales.

    • stylishimo1 profile image

      stylishimo1 6 years ago

      Fantastic lens, my partner was in the navy for 13 years and this is just the types of things he loved to receive, especially the jelly sweets and candy. Things like this are a great reminder of home when you are miles away.

    • Dianne Loomos profile image
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      Dianne Loomos 6 years ago

      @anonymous: Sounds like a great care package. I'm sure he will really love it!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      My boyfriend is an electrician on an Alaskan fishing boat! A little different right? He loves hot wings with ranch so I'm sending him hot wing chips and a mini package of ranch dip, pictures of his parents and brother, pictures of his kitty, fancy packages of coffee, protein bars because he wants to come back all muscley, some magazines- he loves maxime (for obvious reason), a list of 101 things to do when he gets home, fishing supplies by request, candy galore, fancy peanut butter (he loves it), and a couple little nick nacks that will make him laugh!

    • profile image

      pawpaw911 6 years ago

      Thanks for taking the time to do this lens. I have lens rolled it on my Really Support the Troops lens.

    • Dianne Loomos profile image
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      Dianne Loomos 6 years ago

      @hlkljgk: I did that for a while too. I adopted a sailor on the USS Ronald Reagan and I used to send her books. I lost track of her when she came home though. :-(

    • hlkljgk profile image

      hlkljgk 6 years ago from Western Mass

      i send packages overseas using anysoldier.com - sometimes i even get letters back. :)

    • CruiseReady profile image

      CruiseReady 6 years ago from East Central Florida

      Great lens!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      ~ Cupid Kisses by a Squidoo Angel ~

    • profile image

      gravityx9 6 years ago

      Great lens!!! I have featured it on one of my lenses, VALENTINE'S DAY CARDS *SEE IT HERE* and a BIG THUMBS UP!

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      This is my first time sending a care package to my son who's in the NAVY. Awesome information...thank you!!!

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      This is my first time sending a care package to my son who's in the NAVY. Awesome information...thank you!!!

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      Nice lens! Great information. Your readers might also be interested in smokeless cigarettes and smokeless cigarettes reviews information. Feel free to visit and leave a feedback!

      Good luck!

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      I looked forward to the care packages that I received. It made me feel loved and I was able to share with others that didn't even get a letter.

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      Thank you very much.. It is very helpful!

    • profile image

      Donnette Davis 7 years ago from South Africa

      Thank you. Have rated, faved and lensrolled to Soldiers_Angels

      Best

      Donnette

    • profile image

      martialartstraining 7 years ago

      Hi,

      This is a wonderful way foe them to know that we have not forgot them!!

      thanks for sharing this wonderful info with us!!

      I think every one should get a care pakeage over to them!!

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      Fantastic!

      ...and if you're interested in a hassle free approach, The Care Paks Company offers alternative solutions for fun care packages. (http://thecarepakscompany.com)

    • VarietyWriter2 profile image

      VarietyWriter2 7 years ago

      Nicely done, thoughtful and lots of helpful information too. A good site you might be interested in checking out is http://www.anysoldier.com Blessing this lens :)

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      I have a sailor on the USS PINCKNEY and would love to get in on the Christmas cheer. I have been sending care packages to his division on the ship. LOTS of cookies, and for halloween popcorn balls and candy corn. I am always looking for ways to help keep their spirits up.

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      I too have a sailor on the USS Nimitz. He is a gunners mate in the Weapons Dept. I send packages frequently and am always looking for new ideas and suggestions. This is his 3rd deployment. Thank you for the info and links. My son too shares what I send and we send packages to the division at times. They help him to get through each day. Good luck to your sailor.

    • profile image

      OLPS 8 years ago

      I am ex Royal Navy, we actually call these Red Cross parcels and they are most welcome. i can remember sitting in our mess deck sharing things that had been sent between us. It was a good boost to our moral and our families felt that they were still in touch.

    • KimGiancaterino profile image

      KimGiancaterino 8 years ago

      You've been blessed by a Squid Angel, and this lens was included in Another Day of One Hundred Squid Angel Blessings.

    • profile image

      julieannbrady 8 years ago

      OMG, this is a wonderful lens idea! I've heard of schools locally putting together care packages -- bravo!

    • naturegirl7s profile image

      Yvonne L. B. 8 years ago from Covington, LA

      Great step by step for mailing & so many great ideas. Loved the Tightwad Gazette II book, too.

    • tandemonimom lm profile image

      tandemonimom lm 8 years ago

      Great lens on a great topic! 5*

    • Dianne Loomos profile image
      Author

      Dianne Loomos 8 years ago

      [in reply to Treasures-By-Brenda] You are right about there being no privacy. Once Nick moves up one grade he can live out in town so he is looking forward to that.

      And Susan I do know that it is principal and not principle. Sheesh! Too early in the morning I guess.

    • Dianne Loomos profile image
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      Dianne Loomos 8 years ago

      [in reply to Susan52] Trail mix and jerky are great ideas too! I hadn't thought of things like the games. I bet silly string was a big hit! Silly string is a tradition at our local high school graduations. Once they are pronounced graduated the silly string comes out and soon they are all covered with it including the principle who is standing at the podium in their midst. Yep, I think a trip to the dollar store is in order. ;-)

    • TreasuresBrenda profile image

      Treasures By Brenda 8 years ago from Canada

      Your son is very lucky to have you crafting these beautiful geedunk packages for him and I am sure he loves receiving them!

      My husband just retired from the Canadian Air Force. He spent many years on board frigates and destroyers with the Canadian Navy...he says, "There's no privacy on a carrier."

      This is a heartwarming lens.

      Brenda

    • SusanDeppner profile image

      Susan Deppner 8 years ago from Arkansas USA

      I've sent a bunch of care packages to my Marine and my soldier (I voted Marine above since I couldn't vote twice). They're home now, but they loved getting jerky, trail mix, and my No Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies. When our Marine was on a ship, we bought lots of fun little toys, like velcro dart games, hackey sacks, silly string, things that he could share with his platoon and have fun with in their small area. Those went over very well. I'm glad you included the USPS Priority Mail box; those saved us a ton of money on postage. All the best to Nick and all of our troops and the families who support them!