During a deployment, your to-do list can feel very overwhelming. Managing a life and household solo, while missing a loved one, can make it feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day for everything you need to get done. That’s when things like these time-saving care package hacks become so helpful. They make at least one thing on your to-do list a bit simpler and free you up to do something else, maybe something you enjoy.
Time Saving Care Package Hacks
Shop in your own pantry
Don’t have time to go to the store, but still want to send your loved one a little something? Go shopping in your own kitchen! Odds are you have a few of your loved one’s favorite snacks hidden away in your pantry that you can add to your care package. You can also “shop” other spots in your house: send one of your t-shirts that smells like you, send a few local magazines that always arrive in your mailbox or send a favorite book or movie. As a bonus, this may help you save money on your care package too!
Get help with decorating your box
Honestly the most time-consuming part of a care package is decorating the box, but even that has a hack: don’t do all the decorating yourself! You can purchase pre-decorated care package flaps (I may know someone who can help with that) so that all you need to do is attach them to your box and send it off to your loved one. If you’d like to do the decorating yourself, look for patterned scrapbook paper that reduces how much extra decorating you need to do. For example, if you’re sending a football-themed care package, buy paper that has a football theme to it. This allows you to add a few stickers and maybe some wording, but the bulk of the decorating is done for you.
Purchase care package items in bulk/during your regular grocery shopping trip
Nothing sucks time from your week more than multiple trips to the store. It takes lots of time and can cost more than just doing one big bulk trip. Some people I know use the american express everyday card to get better rewards from their shop but they would be better off using the card alongside a big bulk shop. This gives them both the rewards and saved time/money. Combine your care package shopping with your regular grocery shopping trip to save you a bit of time. Making a list of items to purchase keeps you as efficient as possible once you’re in the store (and may keep you from impulse purchasing your paycheck away). You can also purchase care package contents in bulk so that you only shop once or twice a deployment rather than every time you send a care package.
Fill out your customs form before you head to the post office.
Standing in line at the post office is my own personal hell so I make sure to do everything possible to shorten my time there. One of my favorite care package hacks is to fill out my customs form at home. This way, I can jump right into line at the post office, without having to pause to fill out the form. Taping up my box at home also saves a bit of waiting at the post office.
Keep it simple!
This is probably the best of all my time-saving care package hacks. All the extras are wonderful, but does your care package HAVE to sing, light up and be art museum-ready? No. Does it need to be filled with love? Yes and that’s the only requirement. Send a smaller box, go simpler with the decoration and contents, get help from others. Your loved one will be appreciative of what you send, no matter what.
Care packages don’t need to be another overwhelming task on your already too full to-do list. Taking advantage of a few time-saving care package hacks will help make your next care package faster and simpler.
Want even more care package ideas? I’m giving away 165+ ideas (plus what to put in them) here.