HELLO! Thank you for reading and joining the Troopster Blog.
Here it is. The first official blog entry for Troopster. I have discarded my other entries as “not-real” blog entries because they predate my googling of “How to Blog.” A simple idea and yet much like launching Troopster it all seemed very intimidating when put to paper. After a little time though and taking that first ‘can’t turn back now’ step here we are.
Breaking Down The Basics
So you are here to send a care package. Most likely to a deployed military member, but possibly to a college student or someone in the Peace Corps. No matter the reason or destination you are here because you care about someone and you want to take care of them.
There are many great DIY care pack tutorials out there and an ocean of creative and visually addictive Pinterest Pins showing you the top 10 ways to decorate your care pack. The truth is as women, many of us adore the creative, thoughtful and visually appealing care packs such as painting the interior or decoupaging the flaps with photos. I tend to lean more toward the right side of my brain and so for me I just love all of the fun and great ideas for what you can do, but, and this is often the case, I know for a fact that those great Pins and ideas don’t strike the same cords of fancy for my deployed Sailor or many of his friends.
Please prepare yourself for what you are about to read next, as I do not want anyone to feel as though their hard work and thoughtful construction of any previous care package went to waste.
The Troopster Options
If you want to skip the stress, let us take care of sending a care package for you! Take a look at some of Troopster's great care package options below:
- Army Care Packages
- Navy Care Packages
- Air Force Care Packages
- Marine Care Packages
- Healthy Care Packages
- Boyfriend Care Packages
First a little anecdote. When thinking back to my deployments my mom and friends would send me care packs filled with bobbles and cute knick-knacks that I always enjoyed or that made me smile. But with limited space I could rarely keep anything that wasn’t necessary or useful and more often than not anything that wasn’t needed ended up being dishearteningly thrown away. I watched as many of my male counter parts I worked with would get these wonderful and decorated care packs some painted on the inside, some decorated with scrapbook paper, photos and notes, but were after a moment or two of attention discarded. There were times in which I gave more attention and appreciation to the decorated care packages of my coworkers than they did, but again I think this is more for the reason that as women, and granted not all women, we tend to appreciate the creativity, time and effort put forth.
This isn’t to say that every decorated care pack will be easily discarded, but I can say from my experience as having been deployed and also being on deployment with others that the best care packs are the ones filled with things that we can use.
While going all out is appreciated the more useful the better and sometimes you can combine useful with thoughtful. For example I love a specific brand of healthy choice instant oatmeal as well as a select flavor and brand of coffee. Some of the best care packs I received were filled to the brim with these certain food items that I couldn’t get anywhere other than home. Similarly the beds we sleep in aren’t the most comfortable and receiving soft, comfy sheets and lavender pillow mist was something that really helped me to feel a little more at ease with where I was.
What To Send
So this brings us to what you should put in a care package. Snacks that nearly everyone can appreciate, such as Oreo’s, Chex Mix, Pistachios, Jerky etc. are a good start as well as basic necessities such as deodorant, razors and body wash. These items are always a good start and if your loved one doesn’t have a use for or doesn’t like something they recognize that these are items that someone in their shop will eat or use, so they still won’t go to waste.
GO BIG OR GO HOME!
Don’t underestimate the impact of a box full of snacks. For some reason, be it on deployment or in a dorm room, our diets away from home falter and so receiving a box filled with food and snacks is always a great sight to behold! And in today’s world snacks aren’t always unhealthy. Now we have great options for Gluten Free, Organic, Kosher, etc. The sky is the limit and don’t be afraid to send one or two of these great choices.
With snacks and necessities out of the way now we can get to the good stuff. The special, “that reminds me of home” items. This doesn’t have to be anything big or so unique that it took you weeks to find. On deployment or even in college, just having anything that brings back that warmth and love of home is special. Letters and notes, a family photo, a team logo, all of these can add a special touch to any care package.
We all get care packages at the beginning and end of a deployment, or in college we may never get one at all, but rarely are care packs consistent. Understandably everyone is busy. As long and drawn out as the days are on deployment they are oppositely short and fly by in the real world. Every day is either a Monday or Friday and before you know it a month has gone by. Remembering to send a care package can be challenging especially when you feel as though you just sent one. Marking the calendar or setting reminders on your phone can help. With Troopster I’ve added a recurring order option to automatically send a care package to your loved one as frequently as you’d like. If Troopster just isn’t a good option for you right now, then something else that might help is adding a few of the items you want to send next time on your grocery list and then set those items aside for when you want to send out your next care pack.
What NOT To Send
Try not to send anything that will melt or could break open. Baked goods, while thoughtful, might not make the journey especially to some of the more isolated or dangerous military locations. There are also restrictions for items being sent to certain postal codes and this should often be looked over if you are sending out your own care package.
So there it is. What to send, not to send and how often. Troopster is here to help you streamline all of this and still send your loved one a thoughtful and great care package. You even have the options for adding photos and letters, but even if you don’t chose to use Troopster I hope you see all of this as a good reference. Care packages are something that mean the world to deployed military, but can also be a good surprise for anyone else. Thank you for sticking with me on my first blog and I hope that this information has helped give you an idea of what to send or do for your next care pack.