Themed Care Package Ideas

This list was submitted by a website visitor, Tracy. It’s quite extensive. Be forewarned there are a few “adult” theme ideas within. Thanks, Tracy, for putting together this list!

Themed Care Packages

“Surviving the Sandstorms”- Eye wash; Nasal spray; Chapstick; Bandana; goggles/sun glasses; etc

“Laundry Load”- Laundry soap (‘sample Size or Tide tablets kind) to pack in with their clothes….in case there are no washer/dryers; Fabric softener sheets; clean socks and undershirts; Febreeze

“Lotta Java”- Tea; Cocoa; Coffee singles; creamer; sugar; International Coffee tins; cookies for dunking in coffee

“Thanks a Million!!”- Things that may “seem” expensive. Ex: Grey Poupon; electronic game of “Who wants to be a Millionaire?”

“Hang in There!”- Stuffed animal monkey; Banana bread; Banana chips; Banana pudding (the kind that doesn’t have to be refrigerated); Monkey’s in a Barrel game; card with a monkey on it.

“A Day at the Beach!”- sunscreen; beach towel; beach snacks; flip flop sandals (shower shoes); aloe vera gel;

“Medicine Cabinet”- aspirin; band-aids; Neosporin cream; A&D ointment; cold medicine; Alka seltzer; Rolaids; etc.

“Staying Healthy”- nutrition/health bars (ex: Powerbar; Tigers Milk; Myoplex); vitamins; Nutri-grain bars; Gatorade or other sports drink (to stay hydrated);

“MRE/Mess Hall Survival Kit”- restaurant Size condiment packs of bbq sauce, mustard, ketchup, mayo, relish, and salt. Pepper, taco sauce, ranch, cheese in a can dip, etc.

“Correspondence Carton”- notebook paper; stationery; pens; pencils; stickers (who knows, they may even play with these!!); envelopes, address book (filled out already, of course); camera (with a note to send back once it is full);

“Action Hero’s”- Powerbars; squirt guns; Red Bull drinks; small Army figurines; comic books; Gatorade; Red Bull drinks; etc

“To Be A Kid Again”- silly string; bubbles; small bouncy balls; hacky sacks; brain teaser toys (Rubix cube, etc); a deck of cards; dominoes; slinky, Frisbee’s; Pez w/ dispenser; Nerf balls; sand box toys (pail, a small shovel, etc);

“Bathroom in a Box”- TOILET PAPER!!! (the soft stuff); razor refills; foot powder; bars of soap; fresh, clean, soft washcloth; travel Size shampoo/conditioner; toothpaste; toothbrush; etc

“Ruck Sack Snack Pack”- packed full of your loved one’s favorite snacks….possibilities endless. Doritos; M&M’s; nuts; chips; dips; crackers; jelly beans; beef jerky; gum; etc.

“Breakfast on the GO”- mutrigrain bars; instant oatmeal cups; small boxes of cereal; pop tarts; Hostess donuts: Otis Spunk Meyer muffins; cocoa; coffee; Tang;

“Tube O Tasties”- Just as something different…send a package in a tube instead of a square box. Make sure the parameters are acceptable, though.

“Stress Reliever”- back scratcher; bubble wrap; yo-yo’s; bubbles; squeezy tension ball;

“Sloppy Kisses”- since we know chocolate melts over there….send a bunch of Hershey’s kisses. Bound to be “sloppy kisses!”

“I’m Nuts About You”- peanuts; cashews; pistachios; peanut butter cookies; any candy or cookies with nuts in them; Nutter Butter’s; Peanut Lover’s Chex mix; Fiddle Faddle with peanuts.

“Rock On” or “Charlie ROCK”- pop rocks; music

“Chili Today, Hot Tamale”- hot tamales (candy); small cans of chili; red pepper flakes (like the ones at pizza parlors); salsa sunflower seeds; Cajun flavor Pringles; Spicy Chex mix; Boston red hots; peppered beef jerky; taco bell hot sauce packets; Extreme Doritos; chili powder; nacho cheese sauce in a can; Tums/Rolaids, Jalapeño Ritz

“And this little piggy went to the sandbox”- (foot care kit)- foot powder; Dr. Scholl’s boot inserts; foot lotion; foot file; fresh, clean socks; toenail clippers; scrub brush; odor eaters for shoes/boots; foot soaks (either include a small bucket or large Ziploc bags to soak feet it)

“How do you eat your OREOS??!!”- regular Oreos; peanut butter Oreos; double stuff Oreos; low-fat Oreos; chocolate filled Oreos; chocolate covered Oreos; holiday Oreos

“Muchas Gracias…Nachos Supreme”- Doritos &/or Fritos &/or any corn tortilla chips; Mexican Velveeta; salsa (wrapped in bubble wrap); small can of olives (don’t forget the can opener); bean dip; nacho cheese dip; a small can of green chilies; a jar of jalapenos (wrapped in bubble wrap); taco seasoning; small paper plates or bowls (so they can make their nachos); taco sauce (especially easy are those condiment packets from Taco Bell); You could also send the sauces from the various Mexican dinner kits (they also have tortilla’s in those dinner kits that are sealed so they would probably get there without molding or drying out); Taco Bell Nacho Supreme kit

“Sweet Tooth”- Nerds; Gummy Bears; Laffy Taffy; Bubble Gum; Tootsie Rolls; Lolli pops; (any candy that won’t melt)

“Pamper Party” (for females)- Feminine hygiene products; shampoo/conditioner; hair barrettes and scrunchies (same color as their hair); facial scrub &/or soap; facial mask; lotion; shower gel; razors; facial moisturizer; tweezers; nail care kit; toner; special facial products (alpha hydroxy; eye cream; etc);

“Congrats on your promotion”- congratulatory party favors; all your loved one’s favorite snacks; sparkled cider (wrapped in bubble wrap, of course); etc.

“For the Fisherman”- Goldfish crackers; tuna pouches; canned smoked salmon; cans of sardines; gummy worms; Go Fish card game; Field & Stream magazine; electronic fishing rod game; Sponge Bob Square Pants stuffed toy; fishing game toy (made by several different toy companies. Has a small fishing pole with a magnet on the end. Fish have magnets on their mouths);

“Say CHEEEESE!”- disposable cameras; cheese dip; Doritos; Cheetos; Cheese nips; Better Cheddars; Velveeta;

“Kick Back & Relax”- Dominoes; playing cards; magazines; books; music; crossword puzzles; jigsaw puzzles; word searches; hand held electronic games; squirt guns; water balloons; bubbles; hacky sacks; Nerf balls; board games (Axis & Allies, Clue, Trivial Pursuit, etc);

“Christmas in July”- wrap everything in Christmas wrapping paper; peppermint flavored hard candies;

“Italian Stallion”- Italian cheese Ghardetto’s; Pizza-licious Pringles; Pepperoni pizza Combo’s; small Boboli pizza bread; pizza sauce (for dipping Boboli); canned Ravioli, spaghetti, lasagna, etc;

“American Classics”- Pez with dispensers; Cracker Jacks; Lifesavers; Necco Wafers; Pop Rocks; Nerds; Good & Plenty; Candy Necklaces; Candy cigarettes

“Deployed on Thanksgiving”- canned turkey; instant mashed potato cups; hard breadsticks; gravy in a jar (wrapped in bubble wrap); Hostess apple pies; a small can of corn (or other veggies); something special to cheer them up on


Movie Care Package
Microwave Popcorn (or already popped if they don’t have a microwave)
Cracker Jacks
Rice Krispie Treats
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

Chicken Noodle soup packets
Gourmet tea packets
Cold medicine
Inspirational “Get Well” quotes
Dole Fruit Bowls
Get Well “pills” (candy-coated mints)
Get Well card

At Ease Package

Glow in the dark yo-yo
Crossword Puzzle Book
Silly Putty
Deck of Cards
Ritz Bitz
Cereal Bars

Scruff Care Package

Baby wipes
Shaving cream
Lotion (if your soldier is female, step it up a notch and do something from a SPA line)
Foot powder
Big fluffy towel
Toilet paper

Comforts of Home Package

Small Bottle of Febreze
Snuggle dryer sheets
Phone card
Blanket (a nice comfy one)
Glade PlugIns
Pair of slippers or cozy socks
Hot cocoa or coffee
Decorative coffee mug
Pillowcase with your perfume/cologne sprayed on it

Big Kid Package

Squirt guns
Silly Putty
Silly String
Whoopie Cushion
Funny face eyeglasses
Sidewalk chalk
Crayons & color book
Football/soccer Ball (mini)
Hacky Sack

Sports Theme Package

Favorite sports magazine
Personalized mug

A Day At Home Package

There are several variations of this package. The idea is to replicate a day with you. First, you will need a camera. Take pictures of each thing you do. Use your creativity, but 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 a picture in a towel).
  • We started the day off by doing some yard work and mowing the lawn (take a picture mowing the lawn).
  • After our work, we had lunch (take a picture with lunch), and then we colored pictures – or threw around a football, etc. (Take pictures doing the activity).
  • We all ate dinner together (take a picture of 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 a picture watching TV).
  • Later we snuggled up in our jammies (take a picture in jammies) and had a nighttime snack (take picture snacking).
  • We love you very much and miss you! (take a picture of a goodnight kiss)

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 the backyard (strange but reminds them of home)
• Color books or football (something that matches the day’s activity)
• Lunch and snacks
• New pajamas
• Popcorn
• TV shows or movies
• Hershey’s Kisses

1. Work It Out!: sneaker balls; deodorant; Gatorade powder; Hydroxycut; power bars; cheap headphones; white gym socks (no logo)

2. Cookie Mania: everyone bakes a batch, and we vacuum seal them

3. Night at the Movies: DVD; stovetop popcorn; individual size movie-candy packs; entertainment magazines (like Rolling Stone); add favorite movie quotes to a poster; take pics of kids with a star shape in the background and with sunglasses

4. Game Night: Poker Chips; Board Games; Packs of Cards; handheld games and puzzles; nut mix; snack packs

5. Texas Misses Y’all (adjust for your own state): Buy a stack of Texas postcards for people to fill out at the meeting (for their own and other soldiers); include pictures of favorite area spots; pralines or pecan cookies or muffins; Texas pens; Texas stationery; Longhorn stuff; anything useful with a Texas theme; hot sauce; BBQ sauce

6. Breakfast in Bed: Breakfast Bars, Individual Cereal Snack Packs, Powdered Juice Mix, Coffee, hot/cold mugs, muffins; powdered creamer; instant oatmeal; pop tarts

Upcoming Seasonal:

7. Winter Wonderland (may not translate around here 😉 ): hot cocoa mix; cider mix; winter cookies; have older kids/parents make and sign paper snowflakes and paste to construction paper; chapstick; hot/cold mugs; marshmallows

8. Luck O’ the Irish: make a “kiss me I’m Irish” poster with shamrocks and kisses; send Hershey kisses if still cool enough out; good luck charms; St. Patrick’s themed cookies

9. Take Me Out to the Ball Game: Cracker Jacks; Peanuts; Sports Illustrated Magazine and other sports magazines; gum with baseball cards; Nerf Balls; beef jerky; favorite team pennants

10. Are You Ready for Some Football?: Sports Magazines, Team Pennants; Regulation and Nerf Footballs; pretzels and chips and salsa; posters of cheerleaders

Fun in the Sun

lemonade mix
Beach Boys music

*maybe a beach towel, flip flops(just to set the mood LOL), a pic of you and the kids at the beach or in the pool in a beachy picture frame*

New Year’s Package: Party blowers, confetti, a plastic champagne glass with a promise to toast each other at midnight, or any of those crazy year decorations you see people wearing in Times Square.

If you think your soldier will be self-conscious about partying it up alone, then send enough for the guys he’s with the most. You can also include your new year’s resolution list.

Valentine’s Day Package: This will be a package full of red! Candy hearts (even a handmade sign/card with the candy hearts spelling out a message), a book of photographs of you and the two of you together (include risqué photos at your own risk!), a sexy pair of panties,  list of songs you picked out, especially for him, a book of love coupons (you can find these in most stores or make your own).

During one deployment, I made coupons for my husband and emailed one to him every few days. Not only was it fun, but it ensured he would check his email! Be sure to spray something in the box with perfume – you may want to enclose it in a Ziploc bag so the scent remains during the trip. Another fun item is a pair of boxer shorts with your handprints strategically placed over the butt.

St. Patrick’s Day: Good to be green. What better than to send your soldier lots of things for good luck. You can send paper shamrocks, a blarney stone, green beads (similar to Mardi Gras beads), green candy, green drink mix, and a picture of you with the traditional “Kiss Me I’m Irish” saying on a shirt or button.

Easter: Go ahead and send that Easter basket! Fill it up with all sorts of candies – just be careful about sending chocolate. Even if it is cold where he is, you never know where your package will end up between your home and his. You can also send plastic eggs containing special messages from you or your family.

Halloween: Of course, send Halloween candy. Some may even want a costume, depending on what their unit allows. You can also send scary movies if he can access a TV and DVD player. Don’t forget the guys in his unit – this holiday is great to send treat bags for other soldiers too. Fake pumpkins that can be carved can also be a great surprise.

Thanksgiving is always the hardest holiday for me to send packages for since it mainly revolves around food. One idea that I’ve heard of others doing that I love is celebrating Thanksgiving early and placing a video camera in the chair where he would sit if he were there. Record the dinner, send it to him, and he can watch it while he eats his own Thanksgiving dinner.

During one of our deployments, I sent things that represented what we normally have for Thanksgiving Dinner – he got beef jerky (turkey), rice cakes (rice), potato chips (potatoes), candy corn (corn), etc. It was definitely the most interesting package I’ve sent to him.

Christmas: Send the tree and all the decorations. You can find miniature trees along with the decorations at the dollar store. This also ensures you won’t spend much money if he has to leave it behind. Be sure to send battery-operated lights, and don’t forget to include the batteries. Send a small stocking for him to have as well and, of course, include his gifts. You can also send your favorite Christmas movies. One family I know watches “A Christmas Story” during the 24-hour marathon on TBS each year, so they sent the soldier the DVD so he could watch it, too. Another I know attends a church service each Christmas Eve, knowing he was deploying, they recorded the service last year, and he’ll receive the recording in his package so he can be there, at least in spirit.

Birthdays: Party in a box! Send cake in a jar (search the net for recipes), candles, a recording of you singing happy birthday, party blowers, birthday hats, and confetti. You can also send message balloons. To do this, blow up a balloon (don’t tie it closed) and write a message on it. Deflate the balloon and put it in his box with instructions to blow it up to get his message. You can also send a certain number of items based on his age. If he’s older and your checkbook would die of shock, you can always include a card/sign with that number of lipstick kisses. Leave it one short and tell him he’ll get that one in person.

Anniversaries: Celebrate another year by sending your favorite songs, a list of your favorite memories while you were dating or on your honeymoon or from your first years of marriage, a sappy and funny anniversary card, a detailed description of how you will celebrate your anniversary when he’s home – if you plan to give him a massage, you can include the oil or maybe it includes dinner at a favorite restaurant so you could include a menu.

Mail Calls can be the highlight of the day for any deployed man or woman. Even something as small as a crayon drawing from a two-year-old can bring joy to your loved one! Make it a point to send something….even if it’s just a letter….as frequently as you can!

Book Theme Care Package

Book mark
Book tote bag
coffee or tea

Personalized Romance Novel – What better to give your DH for Christmas than your very own personalized romance novel.

Movie in a Box
Movie (New release)
Entertainment section from the local newspaper

Thanksgiving box
turkey spam
cans for veggies
can of cranberry
Paper Plates
Thanksgiving decorations from the dollar stores
cute paper pumpkins from Halloween

Fishing in a Box

(put all this in a tackle box)
Fishing Magazines
goldfish crackers
Swedish fish
gummi worms
“go fish” playing cards
fisherman hat
lip balm
plastic boat or a model of a boat

State Box Program

Post Cards from your state
Hometown specialty foods
Hometown souvenirs
Hometown sports items
Hometown Favorites
Hometown newspaper
Hometown magazines
Hometown books
Hometown map ( You can circle where you live)
Hometown Celebrity facts
Hometown photos ( You can be in them)

Desert Survival Kit

no-water Excedrin
Kleenex Rippled or Charmin Ultra toilet paper
eye wash
nasal spray
cotton swabs
lip balm
sun block
body powder
foot powder
bug repellent
pocket Kleenex
Crystal Light drink mix
beef jerky
any kind of food
tuna kits
instant cup of soups
cereal bars
Little Debbies
Disposable cameras
Velcro dartboards or catch game
Inflatable beach ball
Miniature foam footballs or basketballs
Teddy bears (we never outgrow them)
Exercise shorts and t-shirts
Freezer Zip-lock Baggies

Care Package Scoreboard Stats.
Minutes donating: 10,080
Field Goal Donations: 100%
Donation Assists: 48 Shaving sets
Care Points in the Paints: 54 toothpaste
3pt. Donation Field Goal %: 18 Toothbrushes
Steals: 300 pairs of shampoo & conditioner
Rebound donations: 100 fruit snacks
Blocks: 200 packs of ground coffee
Care turn-overs: 350 toiletries
Donation carries: 30 types of candy
Free throw %: 50 packs of popcorn

“Heartfelt fun”
Homemade Cards with handwritten notes
Hugs & Kisses! Hershey’s Good Night Hugs Hot Cocoa mix & Chocolate Kisses
Friendly gifts include My Soldier Hats, warm socks, silk flowers, luxurious body/skin care products, and international phone cards.
Reading Material: especially current best sellers and hobby, sport, and fashion magazines.
Games: Board games, puzzle books, and new (or slightly used) Play Station and Xbox games are very much in demand and will help the soldiers feel “Young at Heart.”

“Poker Party”
Cards, Poker Chips, & Play Money
Make your Own Pizza Kits: Boboli Pizza Party Pack or Chef Boyardee Pizza Kit
Pizza Flavored Snacks: Pizzalicious Pringles, Cheetos Cheese Pizza Flavored Puffs
Bubble Gum Cigars

“Ladies Night- Spa Party”
Small inflatable pool (so they can all soak their feet), peppermint foot soak, facial mud mask, pumice stone, nail brush, lotion, powder, fingernail polish/remover, cotton balls/swabs, flip-flops, fun socks, fashion and beauty magazines, herbal tea, instant specialty coffee

”Taste of Home A to Z”
A – Apple Pies (Hostess or Drake Cake individual sized), Applejacks cereal, A-1 Sauce
B – BumbleBee tuna, Bazooka bubble gum
C – Crackerjacks, Chocolate Chips Ahoy cookies, Crunch n’ Munch
D – Dried Fruit or Del Monte Fruit To-Go, Doritos
E – Easy Mac, Easy Cheese
F – Fruit Loops, Fritos
G – Girl Scout cookies, Goldfish crackers
H – Hershey bar, Hawaiian Fruit Punch
I – Idaho instant potato mix, Instant specialty coffees
J – Junior Mints, Juicy Fruit gum, Juicy Juice Juice Box, Jerky,
K – Kool-Aid, Kellogg’s cereal (single-size boxes)
L – Lipton onion soup mix, Lemonade mix
M – M&M’s, Moon Pies, Mallomars
N – Nabisco graham crackers, Nilla wafers
O – Oreos, Ovaltine
P – Pop-Tarts, PowerBars, Prunes
Q – Quaker Oatmeal, Nestlé’s Quik
R – Ritz crackers, Rice Krispie Treats
S – Spaghetti O’s, Spices, Sardines & Salmon (canned)
T – Triscuits, Twizzlers, Tabasco Sauce, Twinkies, Tuna, Tostitos Snack Packs
U – Utz potato chips and pretzels
V – V-8 juice, Veggie Chips
W – Whoppers malted milk balls, Whoopie Pies, Wrigley’s gum
X – Chex Mix, Trail Mix
Y – York Peppermint Patty, Yoodles
Z – Zagnut Candy Bar, Zweiback

Military Survival Recipe/Dish: A Comfort Dish to Survive the long days away from home
Here’s a recipe or suggestion for a survival kit from our friends at Operation Military Pride. These fun kits are made simply by printing out the list of ingredients (items) with their meaning and stirring it all together for one meaningful “dish.”

Comfort Recipe
Lifesavers – to remind you that that’s what you are
A Match – To light your fire when you’re feeling burned out
Smarties – To help you on those days when you don’t feel smart
Mounds Bar – to remind you of the mounds of love & support you have from back home
Tape- To fix things that will not work
Confetti- To remind you to have fun
A Starburst – To give you a burst of energy on days when you don’t have any
Pack of Gum – to help your unit stick together
Cotton Ball – to cushion the rough roads
A Rubber Band – To stretch yourself beyond the limits
A String – To tie things together when everything falls apart
Penny – we all need a little luck
A Marble- For when you lose yours
Battery – To give you that extra charge to keep you going… and going.
Piece of Rope – When you reach the end of yours, this will keep you going a bit longer
Sample pack of Excedrin – Thank you, I know this job can be a headache
Paperclip – to hold it all together
A Hershey Hug- to let you know there’s always someone on your side
Mint – because you are worth a mint
Phone cards-reminder to call home
Candle – to light up the darkness
Tootsie Roll – to help you roll with the punches
Laffy Taffy- to remind you to laugh
Jolly Rancher – to remind you how sweet things can be
Map of USA– so you will never be far from home.
Yellow Ribbon-So you will know you will always be supported till you come home

“Tucked inside this little bag
When your spirits are starting to sag
Here 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: Reminds 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.

New Baby:
“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]

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, postcards, handmade cards, gel pens, stickers, sheets 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 triangular 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

Let’s Play Ball:
baseballs, peanuts, major league gum, sunflowers, baseball cards, baseball hat, shredded 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, Rubik’s cube, travel size games of checkers and chess.

Emeril of Iraq (or another 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, 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 to and grow to resemble underwater coral growths. How about one of the medium-sized Conk seashells so he could hear the ocean? Saltwater taffy 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, deodorant, 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 MREs, Bob Marley posters and music, sand bucket and shovel (They have all the sand they need there), travel magazines from Jamaica. Some beach towels with board games like twister and 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 from Oriental Trading Company postcards from Jamaica, sunscreen one of those hats with dreadlocks 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 restaurant 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 really well.

Pool/Sand Party:
Beach Boys or any other group singing about…summertime fun… beach balls, squirt guns, water balloons, Kool-Aid and those little paper umbrellas, several different types of “water bombs” that you soak in water and toss around, footballs, volleyballs, 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 they have a TON of Hawaiian things like paper palm trees, grass hula skirts, leis, coconut novelties, tropical straws w/ palm trees, flamingos, pineapples, etc. pineapple chunks, ‘Hawaiian tropic lotion smell,’ Hawaiian punch juice boxes, sunglasses, pina colada drink mixes, a 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, relaxation music (the ones with sounds of waves, etc), crossword puzzles, word searches, jigsaw 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 – caramel 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, I have pizza, cheese, bbq Pringles, sunflower seeds, and 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 Ziplocs and bubble wrap. maybe send cheese/cracker snack packs with Pepperoni pieces, chips and dips, salsa, pretzels, shelled peanuts, dice, play money, dealer visors, a lucky rabbit’s foot and shot glasses, felt to play on, Crackers & Pub cheese or Velveeta (no fridge required 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 equivalent for the summer, men’s magazines, music & batteries, cards, chips, dice, 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; some fire stations 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, flaming 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 willy’s 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, Kellogs 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- volleyball and net W- watermelon flavored hard candy X- Y- yo-yos, yellow mustard Z- zingers

a box of “Whoppers, the game Go Fish, some little plastic fish from Oriental Trading Co, they’ve got all kinds of fish and things like that, rig up a little fishing pole out of a piece of dowel rod and string, a hat with fishing flies on it, pepperidge farms goldfish crackers, Swedish Fish, Field and Stream magazines, gummy night crawlers, tuna kit

Let’s Play Ball:
baseballs, peanuts, major league gum, sunflowers, baseball cards, baseball hat, shredded 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

Gentlemen, start your engines:
Any racing-related items: NASCAR, NHRA, BUSCH, Formula One, a little remote control car, they also make die-cast car replicas of the individual driver’s cars

Personal Hygiene:
razors, baby wipes, toilet paper, deodorant, foot powder, odor eaters, sunscreen, toothbrush, toothpaste, eye drops, lotion, soap with a plastic case, Q-tips, shaving cream, towels, Bug Be Gone, medicated chapstick, antibacterial hand sanitizer, dental floss, tampons/pads, baby powder, sports bras, underwear

Pamper Party:
I’m thinking of including 2 bottles of a foot soak and a small inflatable pool so they can all soak their feet, foot lotion, foot powder, foot files, new socks, some mud mask stuff, and some cappuccino or International Foods coffee, and some cookies, some shampoo and deep conditioning treatment too, scented lotions, peel-off facial masques (individual), travel size Caress body washes & lotions, travel size baby powders, chapsticks, clear fingernail polish, emery boards, foot scrub & foot/leg lotion, new socks & underwear, microwave popcorn, fancy chocolates, the movie “Thelma & Louise,” Cosmo & other magazines, stationary, plastic soap dishes with lid’s and used those to pack several small bottles of nail polish & toe separators. Liquid body gel & lotion in matching scents, a soap scrunchie, a back washing “strap”, a packet of ponytail holders, a case of bobby pins, a small pair of trim scissors., nail clippers, tweezers, disposable “ladies” razors, toothpaste, toothbrush

Birthday Ideas:
In an Oriental Trading book, there is a balloon animal kit, cake in a jar, party hats, streamers, confetti, noise makers, get some of the Little Debbies cakes and candles, traditional birthday banners, party favors, noisemakers, confetti, balloons, filling space with shredded colored tissue paper (red, white & blue or camo colors to keep with the theme so to speak), hard candy, and bubblegum, camo napkins, plates (seen them at party supply stores and craft stores) party games like pin the tail on the donkey. Hostess Cupcakes, boxes of candles, confetti, birthday cards signed by as many people as possible, goodies like candy and books, etc., wrapped in birthday paper. Hershey sells a chocolate cake (it’s in the shape of a cake candle included and personalized) it’s like a giant chocolate candy bar but a circle in a b-day tin.

Christmas Ideas:
How about a Christmas card swap? I know postage would be a little more, but soldiers would be bombarded with cards across the nation, those little Christmas trees that they sell in all of the mail-order catalogs (Lillian Vernon, etc.) that come with their own ornaments, mini Christmas stockings and candy canes or those little candy bags of coal (bubble gum ones), the green and red M&Ms for the holidays, an Advent Calendar box, Oriental Trading Company has these. They are little pine trees (about 4″ tall) that have a mineral solution on them (I’m going by memory here, I have a whole bag upstairs in a closet but am too lazy to dig them out). You add water to the little base, and these colored mineral salts “grow” on the tree and look like colored snow and decorations.

Halloween Ideas:
A gingerbread haunted house ( all precut and ready to go), goodie bags full of candy, plastic carved pumpkins, a Tootsie Roll pop covered with tissue to look like a ghost, apple cider packets, candy corn, costume for your soldier, carvable pumpkins

Thanksgiving Ideas:
Turkey Jerky, dried cranberries, if you check a good candy store, there are some candies called Peas n Carrots ( they are round green balls and small orange squares ), candy corn, beef jerky or summer sausage = venison, potato chips = potatoes, canned veggies = veggies, dried fruits, and assorted mixed nuts are themselves assorted crackers or breadsticks = asst. bread, hostess fruit pies for the pies, cupcakes for cakes, you could even send some caramel sauce with shortbread cookies for the gravy! and send it in one of those cheap cornucopia baskets from the craft stores, stick some plastic or silk-colored leaves around it, and write a note on a nice autumn-looking picture postcard! If you have kids – or access to some, you can do some Thanksgiving crafts. The old trace-your-hand and color turkey comes to mind, instant mashed potatoes; many big candle companies also make scented candles that would fit this theme and Thanksgiving. Yankee has Harvest, Cranberry Chutney, Apple Cider, Autumn Lodge, Pumpkin Pie, and Spiced Pumpkin

Care Package Ideas to show how sweet your soldier is to you:
Happy Valentine’s Day Card
Red and White Crinkle Paper
Personalized Valentine’s Message
6″ Valentine’s Plush Bear
Necco Conversation Hearts
Hershey’s Hugs and Kisses
York Peppermint Patties
Nestle’s Crunch Hearts
Sweetarts Hearts
Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups
Big Red Gum
Red and White Mints
Homemade valentines.
Traditional Valentine’s candies, such as sweethearts
Conversation Hearts and/or small “friendly” gifts such as warm socks or a stuffed animal.
Valentine’s Tootsie Pops
Valentine cards from local schoolchildren
Valentine’s for Veterans-get some vets to write out some cards for our troops, or send a Valentine for a vet.
A valentine’s letter written entirely with candy message hearts glued to the paper.

St Patricks Day:
green beanie baby, green jelly beans, instant Irish coffee, Rice Krispie treats dyed green, potato soup, green sugar 4 leaf clover cookies, Irish Spring soap, Pert Shampoo, taste the rainbow of “Skittles,” Lucky Charms cereal, sour cream and onion Pringles, small toys from Oriental trading company or your local party store, gum in green wrappers, green dental floss, green toothbrush, guacamole chips,

jelly beans, starburst, bunny corn, skittles, easter basket, colored candy canes,. eggs, candy, toys hidden in eggs, bible verses, and chocolate eggs. Don’t forget the peeps!!! Those little sugary chicks, bunnies, etc remember? A big hit last year was the “jousting” peeps. Send your soldier toothpicks, have them inserted in each peep, put them in the microwave facing each other, turn it on (obviously) and watch them “joust”!!! Your soldiers will get a big kick out of it!!! Banners to decorate their rooms or mess hall that say Happy Easter. Confetti to decorate the tables, pin the tail on the Easter Bunny-maybe a playboy bunny, stuffed Animal of an Easter Bunny, Stationary, Phone Cards, typical chocolates, Easter Coloring Book with Crayons, Easter Book Mark, just some fun things. I’m trying to find an Easter Pinata to send along with the candy so the soldiers can fill the pinata, water guns that are shaped like Easter, and Easter Straws. If you go to Walmart, there is a pack with a jump rope, jacks, and a paddle with a ball in the toy section. I sent a few of those to a unit, and they said that was the best thing that they could have ever received. They laughed all night long.  How about a couple of egg-dying kits? I’m sure they can get hard-boiled eggs from the chow hall. Make sure the kits only require water (no vinegar). Easter M&Ms are great, they won’t melt, plastic eggs and stickers. The dollar stores sell all kinds of Easter Novelties, like plastic bendable rabbits, colorful erasers, pencils, etc.

4th of July Care Package Ideas:

Thanks for defending
the red, white, and blue.
We want you to know
that we’re thinking of you.
So here are some treats-
all in U.S. hues,
To help you combat
the “Mess Hall Blues”!
Personalized Message
Cards from local schoolchildren
Red, White & Blue Crinkle Paper
Red, White & Blue – Chex Mix
Red, White & Blue – Cracker Jacks
Red & White – Starlight Mints
Red – Nacho Cheese Doritos
Red – Atomic Fire Balls
Red – Twizzlers
Red – Gatorade Drink Mix
Red – Skittles
White – Tic Tacs
White – Payday
Blue – Oreo Cookies
Blue – StarKist Tuna Pack
Blue – Rice Krispie Treat
Blue – Winterfresh Gum
Blue – Phase 10 card game
4th of July type movies
4th of July music
4th of July items from Oriental Trading
4th of July table decorations/picnic items
American Flags

For Fun and Entertainment:
Batteries (AA, AAA, C), Blank Greeting Cards (for Soldiers to send home), Books, Magazines (Please see disallowed items list), Card games (Uno, Skip-bo, etc.), Colored pencils, Crossword Puzzle Books, Decks of cards, Dice, Disposable Cameras, Bandannas, Electronic handheld games (poker, blackjack, etc.), Flashlight with a red lens, Frisbee, Envelopes, Global phone cards (pre-paid), Hackie Sacks, Hand-held games, Jigsaw Puzzle Books, jokes & comics, Journals, Jump ropes, Mini-fans, Music, Nerf toys (small footballs, basketball, etc.), Paper / Stationary, Pencils (mechanical), Pens (Black ink only), Pocket size notebook, Slinkys, Softballs, Squirt guns, Travel games, Word Search Books, Wrap Around Sunglasses (Blaster Shield Style), Yo-yos, you could also use newspaper for packing material that way they could read it afterward.

Food and Snack Items:
Crystal Lite Drink Mixes (Just add water) Beef Jerky, Beef Summer Sausage, Breakfast Cereal Individual sizes, Cereal bars, Instant Cup of Soup (Just add Water), Cheese and Crackers, Chex Mix / Snack Mix, Instant coffee (various flavors), Chocolate, Coffee Singles (like a tea bag), Coffee-mate Non-Dairy Creamer (powder), Condiments (Fast food restaurant type packets), Cookies, Equal (packets), Fruit Cocktail / Applesauce Snack Packs, Gatorade (presweetened, powder), Granola Bars, Gum, Hard Candy, Hickory Farms Beef Stick, Homemade cookies / baked goods, Hostess Snack Cakes, Hot cocoa / Hot chocolate (Just add water), Hunts Snack Pack Puddings, Individually Wrapped Snack Items, Instant Grits (Just add water), Instant Oatmeal (Just add water), Jell-O Snack Packs, Kool-aid (presweetened, powder), Kraft Handi Snacks, ,Lemonade Mix (presweetened, just add water),Life Savers / Certs / Tic Tacs, Little Debbie Snack Cakes / Treats, Malted Milk Mixes (Just add water), Maruchan Instant Lunch Cup of soup/noodles, Milk & Cereal bars, Nacho dip, Peanut Butter and Crackers, Pop tarts / Pop tart sticks, Power bars, Pretzels (Regular, Yogurt dipped, etc.), Pringles snack size packs, Rice Krispies Treats, Salt / Pepper packets, Snack Crackers (Wheat thins, Ritz), Snack Size Chip Varieties, Sugar (packets), Tea Bags, Trail Mix, Tuna Snack Kits, Velveeta.

Boredom Buster Care Package:
This care package is full of great activities to cure their boredom. It’s an ideal military care package, perfect for anyone homebound, in the hospital, or stuck in bed. If your child needs some extra fun for camp, this care package is great fun for camp. All of the items in this care package are small enough to fit into a pack, backpack, or suitcase.
Hasbro Electronic Hand-Held Yahtzee
Radica Electronic Pocket Poker Hand-Held Game
Radica Electronic Pocket Slot Hand-Held Game
MGA Entertainment Baseball Hand-Held Game
Original Full-Size Rubik’s Cube
Original Full-Size Slinky

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 the 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 Coffee, Decorative Coffee Mug, Pillowcase with your perfume/cologne sprayed on it, Books

“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, Aromatherapy oils, Scented candles and holders, Pumice stone, Washcloths, scrubber or loofa sponge, Back cleaning brush, Relaxing music, 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

Candy play on words
Take each candy and attach a note explaining why you’re sending it. You can put them all in a box labeled the reason why I love you or something like that:
Nerds: You’re such a nerd and always make me smile.
Smarties: You’re so smart.
100 Grand: You’re just so rich (joking, of course).
Reese’s whips: Because you’re whipped.
Snickers: For the way you snicker at my jokes.
Butterfinger: Because you have a nice butt.
Sweet Tarts: Because you’re so sweet.
Hot Tamales: You’re so hot!
Laffy Taffy: You always make me laugh.
Hershey’s Hugs and Kisses: You always give great hugs and kisses.
Dum Dums: You love me even when I’m a dum dum.
Shockers: The way I feel about you is shocking!
Baby Ruth: I love it when you call me baby.
Lifesavers: Because you’re my lifesaver.
Mints: You’re worth a mint to me!
Reisen: You’re my “reisen” for living.
Reese’s Pieces: Because I love you to pieces.
Big Hunk: Because you’re my big hunk.


Sexy items for a private care package from the wife
I bought some X-rated heart candies (Valentine’s conversation hearts that say stuff like “Be Mine” and stuff..yeah, these said some other things…)

I made some chocolate and vanilla “kitties” on a stick with an insinuating little note attached about him eating them. They were wrapped in pink cellophane and tied with red ribbon. It wasn’t hot there then, so it didn’t melt. He thought the edible “kitties” were hilarious.

I got some underwear for him, put on some dark lipstick, and kissed them all over…mostly in THAT area…I put them in a plastic bag with my perfume sprayed on them and a pink notecard with “Guess what I’ve been thinking about?” on it.

I got him a sleeve for his special alone time and some lube.

Gummy handcuffs with a dirty little story about how we’d use the real thing.

3 or 4 erotic letters in individual envelopes, each scented with my perfume.

Some private pix.

Red Hots that were in a package labeled something like “Sex Pills” or something like that, can’t remember…it was funny but I can’t remember what the label said.

A pair of my panties in a plastic baggie.

A pillowcase with an iron-on of me in a sexy pose so we could still “sleep together” even though we couldn’t.

Coupons for dirty deeds he could cash in when he got home. Yes, he’s cashed them ALL in by now.

Boobie cookies.

I also numbered some obscure, hard-to-identify pix of various body parts. He would receive recognizable pix of those parts if he could identify them. It was kind of like a puzzle/game/brain teaser/other part teaser thing.


Goldfish crackers
Salt packets
Blue Kool-Aid – don’t forget the sugar and pitcher!
Shark gummies
Little game with the magnetic fishing pole
Goldfish game cards (go fish or regular)
Tuna packets with crackers
Sea monkeys you add water to, and they grow
A small conk seashell so he could hear the ocean
Salt water taffy

This would be especially cute for those with children who have taken a zoo trip. Include lots of pictures of your trip and then some of these treats:
animal crackers
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
stuffed animals
plastic zoo animals
tons of pictures!
Reminders of care
“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”
Paper clip: 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: Reminds 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

author avatar
Stacey Abler
Stacey's husband joined the Army in 2003 and was medically retired after four deployments. She enjoys sharing her experiences and expertise around Army life while continuing to support Army spouses and families in their military journey.

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  1. Wow. I am so glad I found this. I actually wrote the first themed case packages list listed about. I wrote in in 2003 when during my husbands first deployment. I passed it around to dozens of people so I am glad that it is still out there…..especially since my husband is on his third deployment and I lost my list awhile ago. I called my sister – who helped me make that list – and we were laughing at some of the stupid themes we made up….like the sloppy kisses. Thanks for having this posted!!

    1. oops…that should say I actually rote the first themed care packages list listed above…not about 🙂 (the list from Surviving a Sandstorm to Deployed on Thanksgiving).

  2. Thank you so much for all the hard work you put into this list. I am officially an Army Mom, am a Navy brat, the ideas are great and they help generate more as I go thru what you sent and how you sent it. It is awesome to have the input of an “experienced” family on how to manage the deployment blues. This is our first time out to the sandy beach, we are only 3 weeks in but do expect the next 32 to require information and support. Hope your current deployment will be a smooth one . K. Readinger. PA

  3. Wow, this looks alot like the list that I put together about 8-9 years ago when my hubby first started to deploy. Through 4 deployments and a 15 page attachement that I have shared quite often with those on yahoo answers (where I started to share it through email) to facebook. Nice to see that others like it as much as I liked putting it together.

    1. Many of these ideas have been sent to me from various readers and I simply compiled them. I’ll be happy to give you credit if they are originally yours.

  4. KLASSY Toffee ( will send a free box of toffee to a Soldier overseas everytime they sell a box! Its just like the ‘Toms Shoes’ guys that give a pair to a kid in a poor country for every pair they sell but this one helps our troops. They donated to military charities from every sale too.Oh and by the way, they have absolutely THE BEST toffee in the ENTIRE WORLD! I bought 2 pounds from them at a chocolate festival in may in Denver and they are soooooooooooooooooo good.There is another company that does something similar to this but I cant remember the name! It was a company that makes clothing though and whenever they sell like a certain amount of ‘support the troops’ products they send a bunch of care packages overseas. Pretty awesome!

  5. Allison,
    I took your recommendation and sent a few pounds to my sister who is stationed in Afghanistan. The owner’s name is Ryan Klassy. He answered my messages personally and was super friendly and didnt send automated messages (except the invoice) and my sister said the toffee was incredible. I wish I could try some myself! *hint hint Mr Klassy if you ever see this, I love free samples!!!* Just kidding haha.

    Amazing blog too by the way Stacey, seriously HOLY CRAP that is a lot of info.

  6. Wow. I am amazed by this site. It is amazingly helpful; and super cute! Thank you for the referance ideas! I’m sure he will love them. <3

  7. Josh and Alison, I am from Aurora (part of Denver) but have never heard of klassy toffee. It looks like their website is down right now but the facebook works, i cant wait to try them. I love local things and my brother is in the army so its all pretty sweet.

  8. Thank you for posting this super inclusive list. A TON of great ideas. I plan to reread this post every time I make a package. Just (haha) need to adjust the prices quoted due to inflation.

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