Care packages are easy to make, can be inexpensive for the sender and priceless for the recipient. ¬†I love some of the very creative ideas out there for contents of packages. ¬†Keep in mind, there are prohibitions and some climates do not bode well for the treats that we may be enjoying back home. ¬†Here are a few creative ‚ÄúBasic‚Äù ideas to tuck in with your next care package. ¬†I‚Äôd be remiss to not also suggest that a great summer project with the kids would be to build some care packages and send them over! ¬† Don’t forget that the INSIDE of the box makes a great canvas for the kids to decorate as well!
Mason Jar cakes:¬† You should know that I love Mason jars. ¬†I use them to store my natural sugar scrub, my dishwasher detergent, homemade pickles and just about anything else I can find! ¬†Here’s a great way to send some homemade goodies that will stay fresh during transit. ¬†The heat during the trip will help seal the jar, ensuring it doesn’t spoil on the way. ¬†Take a freshly sanitized wide-mouth jar and wipe the inside with some butter. ¬†Fill the jar halfway with your cake batter (yes, any kind that you select should be just fine!). ¬†Set the jar (without a lid) into the oven and bake it for the same time and temperature as you would if using a cake pan. ¬†Keep an eye on it for the last ten minutes as it may finish up just a bit sooner. ¬†Using potholders, remove the jar and place the lid on tightly (while the jar is still hot). ¬†You can give it that “back home” feel by skirting the lid with some fabric to dress it up. ¬†Either way, I’m sure they will appreciate the cake and thoughtfulness!
Soap: ¬†Of course the recipient would love some soap! ¬†What’s better than soap is getting some natural soap to soothe the skin that smells great and arrived in neat shapes! ¬†Admittedly, when those silicone ice trays first came out, I thought it would be a fad. ¬†Now, I encourage you to pick up a few in cute shapes! ¬† I use mine for soaps as well as those natural dishwashing tabs and toilet fizzies! ¬†Just keep in mind the size of the finished product so you don’t wind up with trays that produce tiny volume shapes.
You’ll need a pound of soap base to start, along with some essential oils, herbs and, of course, a silicone ice tray or two. ¬†Place the soap base (chopped up into smaller pieces) in a glass container and microwave to melt. ¬†The time will depend on the size of the soap chunks and power of your microwave. ¬†Add at least 1/4 tsp of essential oils and 1/2 tsp of herbs. ¬†Mix and pour into the ice trays. ¬†After cooling overnight, these are ready to package and ship! ¬† Don’t be afraid to experiment with different combos of herbs and oils until you find a combo that you like.
For more information on how you can connect care packages with our troops, check out http://adoptaplatoon.