Themes, recipes, all kinds of ideas plus mailing tips and tricks. It's fun to have them here in one place, so come get ideas and share yours!
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Carla: I am a moderator for Navy moms on Yahoo, but also through the years have done troop support for all branches. I also have started and maintained hometown troop support, and send from our little community in Spirit Lake, Idaho - that has been very very cool. So, if you have ideas you want to share, bring it on and read and enjoy and use! My email is firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or comments. Feel free to share these in other groups or with friends.
Marcy ~ Corpsman Mom: I'm co-admin and been sending care packages since 2008! The best method is using the flat-rate priority boxes from USPS. There's a two-dollar discount when sending to an APO/FPO address and you can send up to 70 lbs - that's 7.7 bricks! You can order a free carton of 10 or 25 of the large-size boxes to be delivered to you at USPS APO/FPO flat-rate boxes; or call them at 800-610-8734 and request the "military pack" of six assorted boxes, customs forms, tape and address labels. It can take two weeks or more for mail to arrive, and much longer if your sailor is deployed. Tips: To save space, remove things from original packaging and put them in Ziplock bags. Don't pack fragrant items such as soap or fabric softener sheets with food as the odors get absorbed. Use clear tape or USPS priority tape to seal. Put a copy of the address IN the box. Storage space is limited so send accordingly :) And everyone loves to share cookies, brownies, anything chocolate! For your sailor now, two great checklists for deployment planning are the Single Sailor Deployment Readiness Checklist and Pre-Deployment Checklist for Family Members, prepared by JAG.
Just HOW does your care package reach the ship? Watch! Video: Underway replenishment - Guided missile destroyer USS Sampson (DDG 102) sailor Boatswain's Mate 3rd Class Marian Byrd discusses her role as a rig captain during replenishment-at-sea evolutions.
And if you've got the bug and would like to do more, please consider joining Molly's Adopt a Sailor here on Navyformoms.com. Every month they adopt a DEPLOYED ship or unit and send the service members themed packages. It's a super-fun and friendly group and you'll make great friends while sending much-needed and appreciated love and support from home!