This post includes products from AU-Rate through Nakturnal, Green Beans, and Honey for Healing. All work is my own.
If you’ve got a long-term deployment or a kiddo that you’re sending lots of care packages to over a long period of time, it can feel like you’ve run out of ideas for what to actually put into said care packages. Here’s the truth: often, it’s not the stuff that goes into a care package that is what’s special, it’s the thought behind it.
But it’s also really fun to send treats that are fun and completely surprising, too. If you’re tuckered out from the long haul or if you’re looking for some fresh care package inspiration, check out these five ideas :
1. Classic jewelry
The best care packages are the ones with surprising items that just speak to you. A few months ago, my sister sent me a care package filled with things that I love– caramels, favorite flavors of jam and seasonings, and a stunning pair of earrings that she knew I would love. It was such a wonderful and indulgent treat. There’s something lovely about a pair of earrings that go with anything– gold studs are just that!
AUrate offers a variety of options and price points with options for gold, silver, and rose gold in most of their styles as well as playful reinterpretations of classic styles (as well as the classics, too). You can never go wrong with high-quality staples. (And did I mention…? AU-Rate has affordable jewelry made with recycled gold and ethically sourced gemstones and pearls. For every purchase made, the company donates a children’s book to disadvantaged youth.)
2. Tasty drinks
I cannot tell you how much coffee I sent to John while he was deployed. All kinds of flavors and brands. But they were all the same kind of coffee– bags of it. I love that Green Beans (which, if your loved one is in the military, you know is the coffee shop on many bases around the world) has options for coffee and tea that aren’t the usual. If your care package recipient loves cold brew, you can send them Green Beans new home brew packets. All of the hard, messy work is already done… all they need to do is wait for the brew to soak long enough to make cold brew. Your recipient doesn’t like coffee? Green Beans has a Spiced Chai Tea powder that will be an unexpected surprise, too.
3. Lovely pillowcases
When John deployed, I bought matching pillowcases (similar to these) and fabric markers. On the inside of his pillowcase, I wrote a note… and on the inside of my pillowcase he wrote one too. Pillowcases with other sayings or pictures are a fun gift, too. Try one that says, “Hug this pillow until you can hug me” or “May the moon kiss you to sleep until I can.” (You can always use a photo transfer to plaster a huge picture of your face on one side, too!)
4. Open When letters
Create Open When letters– notes meant for your loved one to open at particular days or moments in their life–and give your recipient something to look forward to when they’ve finished opening their care package. I’ve got tons of ideas for you so you don’t have to come up with them– here are 102 ones, and here are 55 more–as well as a bundle that you can print out to make your letters gorgeous and fun!
5. Useful, upscale body products
I can’t tell you how many times I have sent care packages to John with things that just weren’t exactly practical. Cute? Yes! On-theme? Absolutely! Usable? Eh… Sending stuff that doesn’t end up in the landfill or tossed aside is an easy way to up your care package game. It can still be unique, fun, and meaningful. One way to do this? Send products that your loved one might not splurge on for themselves. I loved sending John really nice lotions because I knew that, while he would definitely use them, he would have probably bought the cheapest thing at the NEX and called it a day. Sending something more luxurious was one way I felt like I was still able to do something nice for John when we were apart
Here’s one of those items that takes up hardly any room in a care package and is a necessity: Honey for Healing’s wound cream uses manuka honey, which is an anti-inflammatory and moisturizes. You can grab 20% off your purchase here.
Looking For More Care Package Ideas? Try These:
- 40 Ways to Save Money on Care Packages
- The Gigantic List of Free Care Packages for Deployed Service Members
- Here’s What Troops Really Want in a Care Package