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    You are in: Home / Community Forums / Recipe Requests - General / Son in Iraq, need recipes for items that ship well.
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    Son in Iraq, need recipes for items that ship well.

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    Jade #3
    Thu Nov 02, 2006 9:43 am
    Semi-Experienced "Sous Chef" Poster
    Hi, my oldest son is in Iraq for the next year. I would like to send him a care package that includes some home-made goodies. Does anybody have any experience with items that might hold up well and arrive still in one piece? I would appreciate any input.
    Dib's
    Thu Nov 02, 2006 10:33 am
    Food.com Groupie
    Jade #3 wrote:
    Hi, my oldest son is in Iraq for the next year. I would like to send him a care package that includes some home-made goodies. Does anybody have any experience with items that might hold up well and arrive still in one piece? I would appreciate any input.


    Hey There-

    Alot depends on "how long" it takes to get there. We have a ton of "Gifts in a Jar" or "Mixes" that you could ship. I would place them in zip-lock baggies placed inside stackable zip-lock containers-nothing will break that way, and you can pack your goodies tightly.

    Di icon_wink.gif
    Jade #3
    Thu Nov 02, 2006 11:24 am
    Semi-Experienced "Sous Chef" Poster
    Since it will be my first care package I have no idea how long it will take from Southwestern Ontario. I guess it depends on how I send it too...hmm. My boss suggested packaged cookies instead of homemade...NO WAY!! They have preservatives, so they wouldn't get stale, but how could I do that? Anyway, I will wait to see if anyone has experience with this.
    keen5
    Thu Nov 02, 2006 2:48 pm
    Food.com Groupie
    My sister sends her daughter care packages in Iraq. I can't remember for sure how long she said it took, but I do remember that it takes quite awhile. I'd call her, but she's at work.

    She uses shredded paper from a paper shredder to put in the bottom and all around the sides of her packages, so the individual small packages/containers don't bump and bang into each other. She then puts the shredded paper all the way to the top of the box, to keep everything nice and snug, before taping it shut.

    She ships cookies, cheese curls (my neice loves a certain brand that she can't get there), candy, just about anything that won't suffer in weather conditions like extreme heat or cold or get moldy fast. Most times everything gets there fine, but there is the occaisional cookie crumble and my neice says "hey, they still taste great!" But, normally that doesn't happen. She writes Fragile and This End Up on the box, but there's not guarantee it will be treated that way.
    Molly53
    Thu Nov 02, 2006 6:33 pm
    Forum Host
    It's cold at night in the desert.
    Operation Air Conditioner
    provides air conditioners AND heaters for soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    You can send a personal misting/cooling device to a soldier via Cool Our Troops.


    Free military shipping package from the US Post Office

    Reading material is scarce on the front line. Used paperback books may be donated for service personnel through www.booksforsoldiers.com. Please make sure and get the free military shipping packaging mentioned above AND to use the Post Office's Book Rate for greatest cost effectiveness.

    Here are some GREAT Tips from the Cookie Lady that are very helpful for sending baked goodies.


    Treats for Troops
    helps get you provide packages to your loved ones overseas. If you don't know anyone, the Foster-A-Soldier Program matches you with a registered soldier by branch of service, home state, gender, or birthday - or you can choose to sponsor a group of soldiers.

    Useful Care Package Information

    Operation Gratitude is another way to send care packages.

    If you'd prefer not to send your own care package, Operation USO Care Package helps boost morale with personal supplies to overseas service members. Your $25 donation will sponsor a care package for a service person.

    Frequent flyer miles may be donated to help soldiers return home for emergencies OR reunite family members with injured loved ones through Operation Hero Miles


    Homes for Our Troops
    assists injured veterans and their immediate families by building new or adapting existing homes with handicapped accessibility.

    The Fisher House Foundation donates comfort homes, built on the grounds of major military and VA medical centers. These homes enable family members to be close to a loved one during hospitalization for an unexpected illness, disease, or injury.

    Become some soldier's angel by adopting a service member.
    Soldiers' Angels


    https://www.motomail.us/ (for friends of Marines only)


    The Freedom Calls Foundation
    is helping families videoconference with their loved ones in Iraq. You can donate money to help keep this project going.


    Voices From Home
    allows military members and their families and friends to send and receive immediate voice e-mail messages in remote locations around the world.


    Operation Call Home's
    mission is to provide each platoon with their own satellite phone.

    USO Operation Phone Home is a program that delivers prepaid calling card to solders so that they can talk for free.

    Old cellphones and money for calling cards can also be donated at Cell Phones for Soldiers.



    Adopt a Platoon
    has several ongoing projects to ensure that no soldier overseas walks away from mail call empty-handed.

    Send e-greetings via Dear Abby to service people via http://anyservicemember.navy.mil/

    Groceries for Families
    The men and women who lay down their lives for us are terribly underpaid. Help a family by purchasing gift certificates to the commissary.

    AAFES Gift Certificates
    The Army and Air Force Exchange Services is where most servicemen and women do their shopping. You can purchase gift certificates for those in Iraq and those hospitalized.

    Keep the morale of both the troops AND their loved ones left behind high by Showering Babies of Deployed Troops with baby supplies and handcrafted gifts.

    Soldiers called to active duty often have no choice but to put their pets in shelters or give them away. Foster a service person's pet for up to one year of care (with the owner covering all expenses, including food) through
    www.netpets.org.
    Red Apple Guy
    Thu Nov 02, 2006 7:51 pm
    Forum Host
    You could send him my appreciation. Guys like him are heroes to me.
    Jade #3
    Thu Nov 02, 2006 8:02 pm
    Semi-Experienced "Sous Chef" Poster
    I am not much on war myself, but the army has really matured him. He is doing supply work in a US built prison there. I am very proud of him, I try not to dwell on him being over there because I think that I would get myself into a depression over it. He called for the first time last weekend, it was so good to hear his voice.
    Thanks for the replies so far. I am going to call UPS tomorrow to see if they have the same free shipping charge for any families who live in canada, of US servicemen. He might get a lot more packages than I had anticipated sending.
    Chef on the coast
    Fri Nov 03, 2006 10:29 am
    Forum Host
    Jade #3 -
    My husband was stationed in Iraq right after the war started and was there for a year. It took about 2 weeks to a month to get packages to him. These are some of the items my 4 boys and I sent. We would send at least one care package a month.
    I didn't send much in the way of homemade goodies simply because they would spoil on the way over. I sent peanut brittle for Christmas thinking it would be good thing and it exploded over the whole box! He had a good spirit about it though and just laughed. Fudge holds up well. Especially this time of year as it is not so hot over there.
    When it was my birthday, I sent him a couple boxes of twinkies and water balloons so they could have some fun.
    When it was his birthday--I sent a package 2 months ahead of time to his commander. It included a cake mix, frosting, balloons and a present. They actually had the ingredients over there to make the cake! I was so surprised! They had him out doing latrine duty on his birthday just so they could get a surprise party together. He was surprised!
    On our anniversary I sent him a red and white checked tablecloth with crackers, cheese spray in a can, sausage roll, peanut butter, and a small jar of homemade apple pie filling. (It made it over there just fine and he devoured it!) and a few other things that don't come to mind.
    We have sent pudding snacks, granola bars, capri suns (just leave them in the box), beef jerky, razors (his favorite type), toothpaste, pillow, guitar, DVD's, mini DVD player for Christmas and the boys and I made him a Christmas quilt which we sent. I did the boys' handprints and put them on the quilt and had "Operation Snugglies" embroidered on the middle. He absolutely loved it and still has it. He doesn't like the boys to use it.
    We tried to send lightweight things because the postage DOES add up! icon_smile.gif However, it was so worth it to know even if he couldn't be home, we could try to make him somewhat less homesick. Hopefully some of these ideas will help you. Good luck and thank you for being a military family! icon_smile.gif
    Mysterygirl
    Fri Nov 03, 2006 12:56 pm
    Food.com Groupie
    I have sent packages to a sailor that was in the gulf. Some things that I sent that haven't been mentioned are those single serving cups of soup. They worked really well. Also, those Crystal light individual serving packets.
    robarkel
    Sat Nov 04, 2006 5:46 pm
    Regular "Line Cook" Poster
    I ship to a niece in the Navy (not in Iraq). It usually takes 2-3 weeks for the package to get there. I package everything in my seal-a-meal (cookies, brownies, even non-food items). Then wrap them in bubble wrap. Keeps everything fresh and it stays put during shipping. She says it's all in good shape when it gets there!
    Jessica K
    Sun Nov 05, 2006 9:28 pm
    Food.com Groupie
    we shipped many boxes to our friend when he was over there, my husband hasn't had to go yet, but when he's released from recruiting duty i know he will have to.
    i always mailed it us priority mail but i don't know if canada has that option. try to send things that will not melt.
    molasses cookies and sugar cookies are a good idea. our friend loved oreo's so we sent him a huge supply of them. maybe some savory cookies too, like cheese straws or something. remember, no meat products at all, they will confiscate the whole package, better to be on the safe side.

    also consider other things. the guys over there need things like batteries and reading materials. they are in high demand so they are hard to find. for women things like tampons/maxi pads are always out of stock at the on site exchange. maybe books on tape also. or some new video games or dvd's if they have a system hooked up. just some ideas. good luck!!
    Molly53
    Sun Nov 05, 2006 10:09 pm
    Forum Host
    Jessica K wrote:
    we shipped many boxes to our friend when he was over there, my husband hasn't had to go yet, but when he's released from recruiting duty i know he will have to.
    i always mailed it us priority mail but i don't know if canada has that option. try to send things that will not melt.
    molasses cookies and sugar cookies are a good idea. our friend loved oreo's so we sent him a huge supply of them. maybe some savory cookies too, like cheese straws or something. remember, no meat products at all, they will confiscate the whole package, better to be on the safe side.

    also consider other things. the guys over there need things like batteries and reading materials. they are in high demand so they are hard to find. for women things like tampons/maxi pads are always out of stock at the on site exchange. maybe books on tape also. or some new video games or dvd's if they have a system hooked up. just some ideas. good luck!!
    Actually, we heard back from someone with a family member in the military that tampons/maxipads are excellent wound fillers that could prevent bleeding to death...send some to the fellows. It could save their life.
    DEEP
    Sun Nov 05, 2006 10:42 pm
    Food.com Groupie
    My young nephew is no long there, but spent 18mos in Iraq. I sent him packagess almost weekly. Have been trying to recall some of the things I sent. I do recall a few.....trail mixes, jarred or canned nuts, cookies, all kinds of candies(during that period, the military personel had a lot of contact with the kids in Iraq, so the hard candies were as much for them as him). I sent hand held electronic games of many sorts with tons of batteries. Kept him constantly supplied in crossword puzzle books, pens, as well as the "find the hidden word" books, paper goods, i.e., note pads...things of that sort. Do not send large items, as in all likelihood they will have to be left behind if they are quickly re-deployed to another area. Gosh, there are so many things. Just go to your local "dollar" store and roam the isles and be imaginative. Not ever really knowing what he wanted, or even needed, I just sent whatever hit my fancy. I always reminded him that these things were his to do with as he pleased, and encouraged him to share with the guys and ladies who did not have families back here who could or would take such good care of them. Someone else mentioned costs of postage.....well, it was a fortune.....often more than the value of the contents in the package. Oh, I also once sent a couple of bags of corn chips and jars of salsa and told him to have a little bunkmate get together sometime. I punctured the chip bags, flattend them and then taped over the puncture. They arrived fresh. Otherwise they would have jostled around in the package til they were nothing but crumbs.

    Best to you & Regards,
    DEEP
    Molly53
    Sun Nov 05, 2006 11:21 pm
    Forum Host
    Jade #3 wrote:
    Since it will be my first care package I have no idea how long it will take from Southwestern Ontario. I guess it depends on how I send it too...hmm. My boss suggested packaged cookies instead of homemade...NO WAY!! They have preservatives, so they wouldn't get stale, but how could I do that? Anyway, I will wait to see if anyone has experience with this.
    Jade, if you're close to the border, is it possible for you to cross over to a US post office and take care of it there?
    Jade #3
    Mon Nov 06, 2006 6:03 am
    Semi-Experienced "Sous Chef" Poster
    We are heading to Delaware for my dad's 70th birthday party this week, so I will be taking the first box of stuff down with me. I have done a search on shipping to Iraq, and for US priority mail shipping to Iraq for a serviceman is considered a domestic shipment and should only cost about 7 dollars. I sure hope that I got this right, but it doesn't really matter except to my pocketbook.
    I can't believe that tampons and pads would be in short supply. I would have a big problem over there with my danged fibroids. I keep the manufacturers in business. I keep thinking how much money I will save after menopause, ha. My mom was the same way. I know that there are days when I spend 15 bucks on stuff.
    I had a fun time at walmart the other day, getting stuff for my first box. I still need to find squirt guns, they are out of season in Canada right now. I am going to hit the dollar store today and see if they have any. I did get a T-shirt for all of my relatives to sign with their good wishes. I will see many of them this coming weekend at the birthday party.
    I got some little debbie snacks, a calendar (so he can mark off the days til he gets home), some doritoes, gum, jolly ranchers, foot powder, lip balm, a little nativity scene(hope he doesn't get teased for that). I also got some other stuff. I had fun shopping.
    We are about 2 1/2 hours from the border, and with winter on its way, I doubt we would make many trips to mail packages. I was thinking that I could send my sister money(she lives in Maryland) and a wish list and let her shop for me. It wouldn't be the same, but I think that Adam wants some TLC, so he would like anything.
    Thanks for all of your input.
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