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We all have such great ideas on how to pack things, I thought we should have them in 1 place.


Let's not chatter in here, just post the packing ideas.  That way, when go to try and find something, we won't have to search tons of pages.



Views: 74

Replies to This Discussion

Comment by carolyn k 2 hours ago

Cheryl, when I sent baked stuff to my son (and it took 5-6 wks to get to him when he was deployed), I saved my coffee cans. I made brownies in mini muffin pans (i put the paper liners in first) and then packed those in the cans. They fit really well. I lined it with waxed paper first then did a layer of brownies. I found what worked best was if one brownie was up and the next was upside down (because of the slight V shape to them, I could get more in the can). I topped it off with more waxed paper and sealed it with masking tape.
For cookies, I found the mediium size flat rate box worked best. I had some newspapers that I put in the box first (for protection and something to read...a magazine would work also). We had some old spiral notebooks around and I ripped off the front and back covers, put one cover in a large zippy bag and then layered the cookies (usually 2 layers to keep them fairly flat) in the bag and zipped it up. In between the bags of cookies, I had a thin layer of newspaper. I was able to get 5 bags of cookies in the medim box. The top layer was newspaper. Mike said he got the cookies and they were still really good...even 5 weeks later!! BTW, for the customs form, I put 'hockey pucks' on the label. That's our little inside joke for cookies. My mom is a terrible baker....she burns cookies all the time and they resemble hockey pucks. This way he knows what they are and no one touches them!
Comment by Michele on May 25, 2010 at 2:25am Delete Comment LOL - Sue, every time I talk about, and think about those 'moldy peach muffins, I chuckle! So many of my local contacts get the biggest kick out of that story as to how HAE began.

Lyn... you are right as far as the custom forms. Note of caution on custom forms... I may have mentioned this before... do not make any reference to the "type" of cookies or cakes you are sending (i.e., NO HOLIDAY references, like Christmas Cookies or Easter Cookies (just put cookies). Even baked goods isn't advisable, because they aren't sure what type of baked goods... they consider all types of baked goods may also include MEATS which is a NO-NO if it is pork-based for the Afghanistan or Iraq regions... and they are now opening all of the boxes that they may have to question.

I also learned when I send my cookies, I use Pringles cans sometimes, depending on how many I am sending (more often this is for when our sailors are deployed on the ships). I will send an entire box of nothing but baked goods in the pringles cans. Keeps them from crumbling.

Had to laugh at my sailor on last deployment... it was during time he was up for physical fitness assessment, and he asked that I NOT send baked goods because he was eating "healthy"... and I told him to not open the pringles cans, just give them to his shipmates who weren't up for physical fitness... they would gladly eat them, I'm sure! (He was a little taken aback by Mom suggesting that she loved his shipmates more than him... LOL) I told him "Not more, just almost as much."
I've gotten 37 pillowcases in a large flat rate box, but had to have my husband sit on top of the box to close. haha.

First of all let me say this: If you make them the way the instructions are written (my instructions that Dori cleaned up a bit), then you will have a much easier time of packing.
Anything extra is just more fabric and is bulky. ie: double cuffs, flange (extra strip) and huge hems.

option 1
*fold pillowcase (pc) in half lengthwise
*fold pc iin half width wise - you have a smaller rectangle
layer as many as you can into one corner of the box alternating the hem side and fold side. You now have 2 side spaces.

Side 1 space along the seam edge of the pcs:
*fold the pc so that it is the same width as the box and narrow enough for the space. you can do that several ways-you will just have to practice it.
Layer as many as you can to fit that space. I can get 4 maybe 5 here.

Side 2 space along the folded/hem edge of the pcs. This space is more narrow:
*fold the pc the same way that you at the beginning, the 1st 2 folds.
*The pc will be the same width now. fold in half again, maybe again until it will fit in the space. I can ususally get 3, maybe 4 here.

option 2
*fold pc in half lengthwise
*fold up the folded edge about 4"-measure against the length of the box.
layer these outside of the box-it's easier. alternate the hem and folded edge for a smoother pile. every 4 or 5
place a folded pc (I fold them into 3rds to make a square) and place in that "empty"space. This will make a flatter surface.

You will only have one open side this way. Fold and layer as in option 1.

I hope this helps. I use option 2 more when I have so many with the double cuffs and flanges.
here's soHere are some ideas for "pick me up" boxes. You can even give your box a "name"! lol

Java JunkyTea, cocoa, coffee singles, creamer, sugar, International coffee, tins, cookies for dunking in coffee, chocolate covered espresso beans, travel mug.

Dirty Laundry
Laundry soap (sample size or Tide tablets), fabric softener sheets, twin bedding, pillow cases, magazines

Monthly gift (FEMALE)Tampons, Advil, Aleve or other meds, therma heat wraps, Lots of sweets!!! (chocolate not recommended this time of year because of melting factor) Perhaps chocolate pudding cups or Oreos.

Thanks a million!!Things that may “seem” expensive such as Grey Poupon, Twinings, Earl Grey tea, wrap items in green tissue paper, an electronic game of who wants to be a millionaire, travel sized monopoly game

Hang in thereStuffed animal monkey, banana chips, banana pudding, monkeys in a barrel game, card with a monkey on it

Hair affair (for a female)Shampoo, conditioner, brushes, pony tail holders, scrunchies, barrettes, bobby pins, towel

A day at the beachSunscreen, beach towel, beach snacks, flip flops (shower shoes), aloe vera gel, beach boys CD, blow up beach ball

Take two of these & call me in the morningPackets of chicken soup, Dayquil, chocolate chip cookies, aspirin, Band-Aids, Neosporin, A&D ointment, cold medicine, alka seltzer, Rolaids Ibuprofen, etc

Health nut
Nutrition/health bars (ex; Powerbar, tigers milk, myoplex), multi vitamins, nutria-grain bars, Gatorade or other sports drink (to stay hydrated), work out video

Hello mother, hello father greetings from camp USS LINCOLN
Notebook paper, stationary, pens, pencils, stickers, envelopes, address book, postage stamps, one time use camera, with a note to send back once full

Childs play

Silly string, bubbles, small bouncy balls, hacky sacks, deck of cards, dominoes, etc

Action heroes
Powerbars, squirt guns, red bull drinks, small army figurines, comic books, etc

-superman add the cape & DVD
-Spiderman add silly string for the web & DVD

-XMen add the DVD

Bathroom in a box (female)
razor & refills, foot powder, bars of soap, washcloths, towel, travel size shampoo & conditioner, toothpaste, toothbrush, lotion, poofie for shower, tampons etc.

Bathroom in a box (male)
scratcher, wooden massagers, yo-yo’s, bubbles, squeeze tension ball, scented lotion, relaxing sounds CD (like water fall or Yanni)

Goin’ Nuts
Peanuts, cashews, pistachios, peanut butter cookies, any candy or cookies with nuts in them

Gone fishin’
Hooks, lures, line, gold fish crackers, gummy worms, fly fishing magazines, field n’ stream magazines

Happy Feet (foot care kit FEMALE)
Foot powder, Dr. Scholl’s boot inserts, foot lotion, scrub brush, nail file, cozy socks, toe nail clippers, nail polish, toe separators, polish remover, etc.

And this little piggy went to the sandbox (foot care kit MALE)
Foot powder, Dr. Scholl’s boot inserts, foot lotion, foot file, nail file, fresh socks, toe nail clippers,etc,

Chili today, hot tamale
Hot tamales (candy), small cans of chili, red pepper flakes, salsa sunflower seeds, Cajun flavor Pringles, spicy chex mix, Boston red hots, peppered beef jerky, taco bell hot sauce packets, extreme Doritos, chili powder, nacho cheese sauce in a can, wasabi peas, etc.

How do you eat YOUR Oreos?
Regular Oreos, peanut butter Oreos, double stuff Oreos, low fat Oreos, chocolate filled Oreos, chocolate covered Oreos, vanilla Oreos, powdered milk packets

Movie madness
DVD’s, microwave popcorn, flavored salt seasonings for popcorn, cracker jacks, mike & ikes, etc

Soup-er pack
Soups, soup packages, crackers, spoons

Brain Busters!
Crossword puzzles, travel sized chess board, Sudoku puzzles, Rubik cube, brain teasers, word searches, pencils,

Happy Birthday
Banner, hats, noise makers, blank birthday cards, silly string, candies, cookies & a wrapped gift (like a CD or gift card to Target)

Gourmet Gourmand
Mini NON alcoholic champagne, canned seafood (smoked oysters), mini pate, smoked salmon packs, cheese crackers, nuts, bon-bons, plastic wine glasses, etc

FOUR! Golfers only!

Travel sized electronic golf game & some golf magazines, golf balls, tees, etc

Texas hold ‘Em
Poker chips, poker rule or how to book, roll out felt table cover, cards, maybe some sun glasses for the bluffing shark, pretzels, chips, candy & fake money to be silly!

It’s good to be King!
Stephen King novels, DVD’s, blanket to cuddle under, flashlight to read by (with batteries)!

Night at the Museum

Magnifying glass, Night at the museum DVD, plastic cowboys & dinosaurs etc

Fear Factor
Gummy worms, slime, play dough fun factory me cute ideas posted by a Lincoln mom:
I agree. I love themes!
Hey--how is your post office letting you ship shampoo and conditioner? Mine won't let me.
Love all the themes! May have to use some for our next packing party.
What neat ideas.
I thought I posted that they came from Lynn, a Lincoln mom and also a member here.

I just put down toiletries Carol. I learned 2 years ago to not write specifics. I ship that stuff all the time.
I do put it in a plastic bag though.
COOL Ideas!!! I know I will "steal" a few for the next deployment of QM2!!! I love a theme too!!! I'm throwing a Mexican Fiesta Night at our house when we get some company in August....none of us are Hispanic...but the food and drink is fun!!! Norweigan and Swedish themes are hard to come up with things...lutefisk and lefse!!!
No stealing allowed, but paying it FORWARD! absolutely.

how about rosettes or sandbakkers? ever read books by Laurine Snelling. Norweigan families, which I am half.
here is the information that I got from UPS:

have talked to UPS about their suitcase box. It's actually very close to the same price as USPS, but you have to buy the box. I took an avon box full of fabric in to compare the prices. I'm a visual person, so that helped me understand. this is what I found out:

suitcase boxes:
small 22 x 14 x 9 cost is $13.00 for the box
large 26 x 16 x 12 cost is $18.00 for the box, I think

then the add 1" to each dimension for the actual figuring of the cost. Don't quite get that, but that's what they do.

Then it's based on the weight and zip code. Plus they charged me $1.50 for a fuel surcharge. I mailed the box for $25 and change, which was alittle bit more than the 2 flat rate boxes. But I had some crazy big bulky pieces that fit nicely into the avon box vs the flat rate box, so I went with it.

So if you have your own box, it's about the same. if you buy their boxes, that adds to the price. and this is based on surface shipping which took 1 week. And I didn't do a "practice" pack with pcs, just fabric. I will have to do that.

Air is outrageous. hope that information helps.
So, if I'm reading this right: If I have my own box (which I do have several Avon boxes) and can fit 60 or so pillowcases in a box, it comes out to about the same cost as packing two flat rate boxes with 30 or so pc each? I want to get the best deal for my shipping $$, but I also have 160+ pc to ship for my son's squadron. I'd rather pay 'a little more' and ship in larger batches (heck, if I could ship one HUGE box, I would!).


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