Skip to comments.CARE PACKAGES for our Troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, 2008
Posted on 03/29/2008 11:24:00 PM PDT by patriciaruth
Welcome to the 2008 thread of the Merry Band of Patriots!
Our grassroots group of troop supporters started in the summer of 2001 by sending VHS movies and Snickers candy bars to the 101st Airborne and later the 10th Mountain at Camp Bondsteel in Kosovo. We are not an organized charity as no one of us has the time or energy to do all that paperwork, and any contributions made are not tax deductible.
Our specialty in the past has been movies, books, snacks, personal care items, holiday decorations and some appliances like DVD players, microwaves, and Playstations; and we have sent many hundreds of movies to various bases. Normally we adopt a whole unit and send care packages to a contact in that unit who distributes the goodies to all in the unit. When our adopted units rotate back stateside, they leave the items which are not consumable for the use of their follow-on unit. Thus we have helped build up entertainment libraries throughout the war zones.
REVIEW OF 2006
In 2006 we entered our 6th year of sending care packages to our troops in war zones We adopted the follow-on PSYOP company at Bagram air base in Afghanistan and a follow-on Stryker Brigade company at Mosul in Iraq. We also adopted a new company of 141st Signal battalion in the 1st Armored Division that started at Tal Afar and was soon moved to Ramadi as a tip of the spear there in 2006, just after another adopted unit (Old Sarges unit) at Ramadi left. Here are a couple emails from Chris that say it all for what they went through there.
The bad news is that my team has been activated and now has a mission in downtown Ramadi, the most dangerous place in Iraq. June 15, 2006
can you say, BOMB MAGNET?!! -- June 16, 2006
[It didn't help that a reporter with a major news service helped the terrorists spot their RPG trajectories by publishing that one had fallen 20 feet short, resulting the next day in an RPG killing one of our contact's fellow soldiers.]
Last week another soldier and I were at our communication trucks when an RPG hit a humvee right outside our compound wall about 10 feet away. It rocked the trucks. We both opened the doors to our trucks to run inside when a 2nd RPG flew over the wall, through our camouflage net, bounced off the top of our trucks and hit the ground exploding right in front of us. I was closest, about 2 feet away. The blast threw us back into the trucks. The other guy only had his glasses knocked off. He got right back up and ran inside. I don't remember the exact details but I remember the blast throwing me back inside the truck and into the signal equipment. I think I was stunned and dazed because I sat there for a few minutes before I regained situational awareness and got the hell out of there. I suffered a concussions and some hearing loss. August 10, 2006
A lot of prayers were said for our guys at Ramadi, which is now a relatively peaceful city under Anbar Awakening, and our contacts are safely home.
In 2006 we were also glued to a couple companies of the 172nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team out of Fort Richardson in Alaska. (Most of the Brigade bases at Ft Wainwright.) Our adopted company in an SBCT the year before had been at Fallujah 2004 and then met evil face to face and endured some horrific times at Mosul (2004-2005). They witnessed atrocities to the civilian population by the terrorists and they experienced IED attacks and the mess hall bombing at FOB Marez that left some of our company very severely injured with one KIA.
Their follow-on unit and a sister company that we also adopted were faced with pacifying the towns along the Syrian border. In 2006 they moved out from Mosul into Ft Talafar, FOB Heider, COP Rawah, and other locations and brought a return to sanity for the locals from the murderous reign of radical and vicious terrorists enforcing their idea of Sharia law.
Alpha company of 4-23 infantry regiment of SBCT was out in the sand in tents at COP Rawah in the late winter and into the blistering summer heat with few amenities, so we concentrated on sending them packages.
In May of 2006, because I believed our adopted 172nd Stryker units and our 1AD unit at Tal Afar were going to be in an upcoming major offensive, I urged our troop supporters to send a great many care packages for the Fourth of July.
The Merry Band of Patriots responded by sending over a hundred care packages to our adopted units for the Fourth of July. More detail will be in one of the first posts of this new thread.
As feared, just as their tour ended and they were getting on planes to go back to Alaska, our two adopted 172nd SBCT companies had their tours extended and were turned around and sent to Baghdad in 120 degree heat. They pretty much arrived with just the clothes on their backs, having given away to their follow-on unit or mailed home most of their comfort and recreational items. They had to beg back their Stryker vehicles and unpack and reassemble and resight their weapons. Stryker at the special location (FOB Heider) went, too; and all were reunited again at FOB Stryker at Baghdad. Some 200 plus of them returned from Alaska.
We did an emergency mailing of packages to help reequip them with odds and ends, like surge protectors, flexible cold packs, pillows, sheets, soccer ball inflators, drink mix, DVD movies and boxed TV series. kattracks, bjcintennessee, daybreakcoming, DAVEY CROCKET, JaneAustin, Just A Nobody, SwatTeam, JoyjoyfromNJ, Enterprise, MJY1288, norton, JustAmy, Abigail Adams, DrDeb, Ros42, my optometrist, SENClander, patriciaruth all sent packages.
In return a few of us got T-shirts from the Apache Renegades (Juans Stryker unit), with their mascot [skull with Indian war bonnet] over a map of Iraq with this inscription:
Aug 05 Dec 06
Mosul Rawah Baghdad
We adopted a new unit in the Fall of 2006, an NPTT unit (National Police Transition Team) at Baghdad, on the recommended of Juan in the 172nd SBCT, because his brother Andy was a member of the unit. (Another brother was serving in Afghanistan. What a family!)
We also sent 19 packages to Kirkuk for Operation Crayon summer 2006 with school supplies for the local kids.
We communicated with and sent some packages to a few wounded warriors at a Fisher House for transitional treatment of those just discharged from Walter Reed.
We sent some packages to Irbil where some MI soldiers were liaisoning with servicemen from Republic of Korea, and some to a military intelligence unit at Kirkuk.
I sent a few packages to a Marine from my town who was near Baghdad.
2006 had its victories.
Zarqawi was killed at Mosul in June and Saddam was executed in Baghdad in December. But the bombing of the Golden Mosque at Samarra by al Qaida early in 2006 sparked escalating sectarian violence that almost derailed everything we had accomplished. Anbar Awakening (where the Iraqis in Anbar Province decided the al Qaida types were evil and decided to band with the Americans to get rid of them) and the Surge in 2007 put Iraq back on the freedom track and our soldiers closer to seeing a victory for their heroic and costly efforts in Iraq.
2006 had its sorrows.
2006 was a difficult year for me due to personal and family health problems and the beginning of kattrack's final illness, and thus I never posted a new 2007 thread with a summary of 2006. The advantage of the delay is that I was able to include much more detail about what was going on with our adopted units in 2006.
kattracks was our Fairy Godmother Dept for our soldiers in harm's way. In the first 9 months of 2006 she sent at least 92 care packages, many of them large. 7 went to Camp Ramadi and included an large inflatable wading pool, 9 went to Stryker at Mosul. 23 went to Tal Afar for general distribution to all the units there. 11 went to A company of Stryker at COP Rawah and then 11 more went to them after they were redeployed to Baghdad; 2 went to C company of Stryker at Ft Talafar and 11 more after they redeployed to Baghdad. 9 went to Kirkuk for Operation Crayon, and 9 went to Bagram air field, Afghanistan.
kattracks was given the precious gift of the Rapture in May, 2007, and we were left to carry on without her.
A few other special projects in 2006 that caught my eye as I was counting the packages from kattracks:
18 boxes of school supplies were sent in 2006 to Operation Crayon in Kirkuk by Coop, kattracks, Jane Austen, patriciaruth, my mother, Just A Nobody, Enterprise, DrDeb)
Two framed quit claim deeds to Zarqawis safe house were donated by doug from upland (together with copy of the ad on eBay) and sent to MI at Kirkuk and to 1AD at Ramadi.
Christmas, 2006, packages went to
Bagram (from Nina0113, Enterprise, daybreakcoming, airborne)
10th Mountain: (from patriciaruth)
NPTT (from SENClander, daybreakcoming, with 11 Petzl headlamps sent directly)
a local Marine near Baghdad (patriciaruth)
4th ID north of Baghdad. (from patriciaruth requested by Abigail Adams)
Mosul: Stryker that was redeployed to Baghdad (from jtill, a Santa suit from patriciaruth, LittleBlogSpot, Freedom is eternally right, SwatTeam)
Ramadi: (from jtill, fanfan, SwatTeam, daybreakcoming and her sister, Merlinator, Abigail Adams, Enterprise, Just A Nobody)
Walter Reed (from Enterprise)
Mologne House for recovering wounded (from patriciaruth)
daybreakcoming sent pre-lit Christmas trees to Ramadi and Mosul, and her tree to Stryker at Mosul ended up at FOB Stryker in Baghdad as they were redeployed there just before Christmas. SENClander sent a pre-lit Christmas tree to NPTT at Baghdad.
Many care packages went out throughout 2006 which are not listed, like all those nina0133 sent to Bagram; but I have decided to cut the effort to list everything now so I can manage to get a new thread posted.
REVIEW OF 2007
In 2007 we sent out over 71 care packages to Afghanistan, over 105 to Stryker Brigade Combat Team units in the Surge to pacify Baghdad and environs, over 83 to NPTT units at Baghdad, and 4 to Balad for an estimate of over 263 packages sent to our adopted units in the war zones.
. The Surge meant our guys were on walk about more than they were at home base -- looking for and finding AI (al Qaida in Iraq) as well as enough caches of weapons to carpet California.
Afghanistan heated up and we ended the year 2007 sending a few care packages to a group holed up on high mountain ledge near the Pakistan border and scoring 400 plus fire fights with Taliban and al Qaida trying to infiltrate back into Afghanistan.
Last year 2007 we grieved at the loss of troop supporters kattracks, kayak, 68-69TonkinGulfYachtClub, GretchenM (formerly GretchenEE), and the husbands of jtill and SENClander. We also continued to miss COB1 (AKA Texas Cowboy). God holds them all now in the palm of His infinite hand.
BAGRAM Air Field near Kabul:
SENClander's sister sent 3 care packages in January to 315th PSYOP unit just before they left, and we [nina0133, Ros42, Abigail Adams, Just Amy, Jim Robinson, jtill, Paperdoll, PigRigger, manna, patriciaruth] sent 61 care packages (5 were large) to A Co, 13th PSYOP who took over and who have now departed early this year. These packages included 55 bags of beef jerky given to a Special Forces unit there from airborne, norton, Kitty Mittens and my mother. SW6906 sent most episodes of 3 TV series.
KANDAHAR: fanfan sent packages to Canadian troops
BATTLE Company on Pakistan-Afghan border:
Early in December 2007 we sent them 7 care packages for Christmas:
5 boxes of Hickory Farms cheeses (with 37.5 oz of cheese in each) from Enterprise and patriciaruth, a box with 17 packs with 1/2 lb of beef jerky from 4Godsoloved...Hegave, and a box with 14 Hickory Farms 14 oz beef sausages from by cshnorthcarolina.
Email to maine-iac7 from her grandson: We ate all of that cheese and meat, it was amazing. We really pushed through all of it fast. awesome. I cant find the box to tell who sent it - if you know, PLEASE thank them and let them know how great it was! Best food in some time! It means a lot to us that people back home know we are here. We;re so isolated that it really is awesome to know. It means a lot to all of us.
In 2007 we [[nina0133, SwatTeam, manna, jtill, patriciaruth, Enterprise, Ros42, Abigail Adams, mathluv, Just Amy, Jim Robinson] sent 66 care packages to our adopted Stryker unit at FOB Stryker at Baghdad up to their departure at the end of the summer --including a microwave [Enterprise], a Nintendo Wii [my optometrist], and 210 blue ice gel packs [SwatTeam and jtill].
We sent 39 care packages [deadhead, SENClander, JustAmy, Jim Robinson, Paperdoll, Abigail Adams, patriciaruth, 4Godsoloved...Hegave], 18 Petzl headlamps [Enterprise, jtill, manna, PigRigger, Kitty Mittens, MEG33] and a Christmas tree with ornaments [mass55th] to the current Stryker unit at Baqubah in Diyala Province, after we made contact in November.
To 3 NPTT (National Police Transition Team) units in Baghdad (at Camp Liberty) we [SENclander, patriciaruth, mass55th, Yaelle] sent 56 care packages including 22 Petzl headlamps [MEG33, SwatTeam, norton, Enterprise, jtill] and a Christmas tree [MJY1288] and ornaments. To one of these units (to Juan's brother Andy) we [Enterprise, Tunehead54, patriciaruth, my mother] also sent 12 boxes of school supplies for him to distribute to local school children.
To an NPTT unit at FOB Falcon near Baghdad that left in September we [patriciaruth, iceskater, Enterprise] sent 15 care packages and SW6906 sent most or all episodes of 5 TV series.
BALAD, Iraq 2007: 4 care packages sent for Christmas to mystery-ak's husband (doing another tour of duty).
FOB Prosperity, Iraq 2007: 1 care package
Our many generous donors of checks, cash, money orders, Paypal, shopping cards, phone cards, etc are listed in the Accounting posts toward the end of our 2006 thread (which also covers 2007) and which can be linked from the post below. Many of our members are now trusted to mail their packages directly.
BUMP for you, Patty, and all of the tremendous people on this thread. (You have FReepmail)
Thank you so much for all that you and the rest of the group do.
I have had the privilege to see our troops open boxes like these and they’re like kids at Christmas and always so appreciative that people back home are thinking of them.
You all are the best!
Jolly Ranchers & Twizzlers
Candy Corn Taffy
Sweet Tart Variety Mix
mathluv mailed out her box of Halloween candy for the base near Kandahar. See post above, #604. Thank you!!
PGalt pledged help with another box and inspired me to send this out to a local Marine in Afghanistan. THANK YOU!
Mailed October 19, 2011, to local Marine in Afghanistan, third box 12x12
third box; insured $85.11, postage $17.95
All Creatures Great and Small (James Herriot)
All Things Bright and Beautiful (James Herriot)
All Things Wise and Wonderful (James Herriot)
The Lord God Made Them All (James Herriot)
Every Living Thing (James Herriot)
7 bags Halloween candy:
Brach’s Autumn mix
Brach’s mallow pumpkins
50 Tootsie Pops
Hershey’s with almonds
Hershey’s Cookies and Cream
DVD movie: Without a Paddle (Burt Reynolds)
National Geographic on Teenage Brains
Sports Illustrated on The New Money Ball
Planning is now starting for Christmas. Hot cocoa mix sounds good. A Christmas tree or two sounds good. Decorations sounds good. Any other ideas or volunteers to help?
THANK you, patriciaruth! Thanks to FR’s finest, stepping up for America’s finest. Thanks to families and friends of all who have served, all who are serving, and all who will serve in the future.
(I added a self-imposed $5 late fee to my original amount because I never made it to the post office on Monday. It’s on the way!)
Hey, all you Halloween survivors! (We had around 350 trick or treaters)
A couple days before Halloween we got this email from the base near Kandahar. Really neat to see how excited the Chaplain was at the bonanza that came in from Airborne, mathluv, JustAmy and JimRob, and from boxes financed in part from jtill, Enterprise, PGalt, and Kitty Mittens.
How are you doing? I hope this email finds that you and your family are doing well. So far we are entering month 6 of our deployment and so far things are going very well. It goes without saying that we miss our families very much and with the holiday season approaching things might get a little tough but I know we have a strong group of Soldiers here and we will pull each other through.
Thank you, thank you, thank you... Thank you so much for all of the candy, protein bars, books & magazines, popcorn & snacks, juice and candy again... The Chaplain confirmed today that all boxes have been received!!!
I don’t know how you are able to supply us with so much but we really do appreciate it. I was not there when the chaplain unpacked the boxes but I was amazed by the amount of love (and candy) that your organization was able to provide to us. The Chaplain has a plan to go around our FOB and visit each Soldier and pass out the candy in a reverse of trick or treating event (instead of the Soldiers going door to door the candy it will be brought to them). We will also be using the left over candy during our Holiday card social. The chapel will be set up like a card shop. Our version of a Halmark store. Soldiers will be able to come and pick out Holiday cards for their family. We will play Holiday movies and have coffee, snacks (and now chocolates, my favorite!!!) while the Soldiers pick out cards to be mailed and delivered before the Christmas Deadline.
To answer your question about movie: I spoke to some of our Hispanic Soldiers and they had a few recommendations. Movies, Lambada (Lou Diamond Phillip), Stand and Deliver (Edward James Almos), Honey (Jessica Alba), Tortilla Soup (Hector Elizondo) Like Water for Chocolate, Latin Kings of Comedy, Born In East L.A.. Actors/ Actress Eva Mendez, Jennifer Lopez, George Lopez, Benecio Del Toro. Movies in Spanish are fine with them as well.
I have not found any Native American Soldiers but as soon as I find some I will ask them the same question.
I will email you in the next few days in reference to the Christmas tree/ decorations. I do believe the last unit left the Christmas tree/ decorations for us but I want to check our conex to make sure.
Ma’am you are simply awesome and your organization is making a huge impact on FOB Walton and the lives of our Soldiers/ Civilians. Sometimes we get so caught up in the mission here that we don’t think anyone outside of our families are thinking about us. However with each box that you send I think to myself there is a group of people that remember and appreciate us.
Thank You for all you do...
Thank you very much, patriciaruth!!
Wonder if he meant La Bamba with Lou Diamond Phillips: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PK2HANwsUWg
God bless our troops!!
You made my day!
(((((Thank you, my Dear Sister in Christ)))))
I’ve ordered La Bamba, Stand and Deliver, Honey, and Latin Kings of Comedy already thanks to contribution from Enterprise.
And thank you! for your continued support with JustAmy of our adopted units.
I think yours was the first box to arrive and it sort of bowled them over!
Awwww....what a sweet message...
Take care of yourself, sweetie!
I’m hoping for 5 or 6 volunteers to send one or two care packages for Christmas to our adopted base at Kandahar or to another one on the Pakistani border.
I have in mind that we would send cocoa (hot chocolate) mix and candy canes. Postage for a 12x12 box would be 12.95.
In the past hot chocolate mix sold for $1 a box of 10 envelopes but this last year I haven’t seen it for less than $1.49. One can get 10 or 12 boxes in a care package, or more, especially if you open some boxes and stuff the envelopes in some of the other boxes.
Candy canes of the regular size come in boxes of 20 or 12 that can only be economically sent from the East Coast where a larger care package box can be filled and mailed at lower postage than elsewhere in the country. For those of you in other parts of the country you can take the canes out of their boxes and put them in your 12x12 box layered between sheets of bubble wrap. And I think you can easily get 8 boxes of 10 into your care package. Boxes of candy canes sell for $1.00 to $1.50 a box.
Or you can put in both cocoa mix and candy canes cushioned with bubble wrap together in one care package.
I have a lot of movies and books already purchased that I am sending, and also going out to get ornaments for a Christmas tree for the base on the Pakistani border. I have put out a request to a faithful donor to buy and mail a tree from the East Coast, and should hear from him by next week if he can manage it.
My local Marine will be leaving Afghanistan in December and not be there for Christmas. Godspeed to him and our deep appreciation for his service.
I hope we can get some volunteers to get these care packages out before Thanksgiving or soon after, and also donations to me to cover the cost of the movies, books and ornaments and postage are always appreciated. I am never too proud to shill for our troops in the war zones.
Please let me know if you can help with Christmas for our troops.
Happy Thanksgiving to All!
Correction: candy canes come in boxes of 10 or 12 not 20 or 12.
I have two or three items purchased and plan to send them wherever you want me to send them. Unless I hear otherwise, I will send them to the same place as I mailed the last boxes.
I will buy some hot chocolate mix and a couple of boxes of candy canes.
I can get 2 or 3 boxes mailed next week.
Let me know how many envelops of cocoa and how many candy canes you send so I can keep track of how we are doing.
I plan to do some shopping today.
I have on hand a large box of granola bars, some regular size candy bars (120 bars) and a box of Rice Krispy treats. I will get cocoa and popcorn to use as packing.
I’ll let you know quantities later.
I got two boxes of 30 Nature Valley fruit and nut bars for Kandahar and just packed two boxes of 15 caramel nut protein bars as filler with the ornaments going to our base on the Pakistani border tomorrow. So we are both on that same brain wavelength.
I figured how to pack those Bob’s candy canes with 12 in a box for 98 cents at Walmart. Two boxes flat with canes vertical/straight up in kitty corners and then put two boxes turned 90 degrees so canes are seen horizontal into the other two kitty corners. Can get 8 boxes in that way and take the canes out of the remaining two boxes and lay them out on thin bubble wrap, and then overlaid with bubblewrap. Get 120 canes into a 12x12 care package pretty quick that way.
Trick to getting 10 boxes of cocoa mix in one box is easy, too. Cocoa Swiss Miss cost 1.29 at Walmart.
Bless your care packaging heart!
I have 5 boxes packed. I need to finish the Custom Forms, I plan to take to PO tomorrow.
Also, last week I got 24 candy canes as Target for 2.49. I bought 4 boxes (8 doz canes) for $10.00. This week Target has 3 boxes of 24 candy canes for $5.00 so ... today I picked up another 6 boxes (144 canes) for $10.00. I plan to pack them tomorrow and mail them on Thursday along with the granola bars. I read the granola bar box again. They are packed 2 bars per pack for a total of 96 or 48 individual packs.
Tomorrow, I will post what I get mailed tomorrow.
I mailed 5 large flat rate boxes to Kandahar this morning. I will try to get two more boxes mailed tomorrow.
56 candy canes
12 bags MW popcorn
100 individual packages Nestle Cocoa Mix
48 candy canes
34 Rice Krispy Treats
3 boxes flavored Coffee Mate .. 50 packs each box ...
French Vanilla, Creamy Chocolate, Irish Creme
2 boxes of M&M variety regular size candy bars ... 30 bars/box
20 Rice Krispy Treats
6 bags corn nuts
2 boxes of M&M variety regular size candy bars ... 30 bars/box
24 bags David & Sons sunflower seeds
5 plastic candy-filled candy canes
2 decks of playing cards
2 packages of dice
1 tin dominoes
2 tubs soft red/white mints
1 40oz bag Reeses assorted candies
~ 85 pieces of assorted candies for filler ...
Skittles, Starburst, Snickers, Milky Way, etc.
I packed different this time. Instead of leaving the candy canes is the original boxes, I used bubble wrap and put the candy canes in loose. I’m hoping they make it without breaking.
I mailed two more boxes today. That makes a total of 7 boxes from Jim Robinson and me.
48 Crunchy Granola bars (packed two bars per pack
72 Candy Canes
6 Microwave popcorn
72 candy canes
22 Microwave popcorn
~ 75 mini size assorted candies for filler
Here comes Santa Claus!
Big THANK YOU’s are due.
Dolander2000 has mailed big boxes to both of our adopted bases with beanie babies for the soldiers to choose and send home to their kids or hand out to local children.
JustAmy and Jim Robinson have sent out 7 boxes, see the two posts above, filled with goodies for Kandahar, including candy canes, granola bars, popcorn, candy bars, etc.
norton has his boxes ready to fill when Hickory Farms opens tomorrow and send to our adopted unit at FOB Joyce.
MJY1288 has mailed a tall prelit Christmas tree to headquarters of FOB Joyce.
And I mailed out the Christmas tree ornaments yesterday for
the tree to FOB Joyce, BIG THANK YOU to Enterprise for the donation covering these boxes and their postage.
Mailed November 16, 2011, to FOB Joyce in Afghanistan, 3 care packages 12x12
Box 1, value $34.74, postage $12.95
Christmas tree ornaments:
box 18 medium blue round shatterproof
2 containers small round shatterproof (1 blue, 1 silver)
part box with 12 medium red balls
19 Balance protein bars (caramel nut)
Bag 16 Kitkat Halloween candy bars, 3 Halloween Skittle pkgs, and 1 Halloween Reese’s peanut butter cup
1 box 1000 tinsel
Box 2, value $30.67, postage $12.95
1 box tinsel
1 pkg 3’x5’ sparkle snow drape for tree skirt
box 18 medium silver balls
6 medium red balls
container 10 small red balls
2 boxes 24 silver icicles 4”
box 200 ornament hooks
11 Balance protein bars (caramel nut)
Box 3, value $14.95, postage $12.95
Glass and white lights star tree topper
4 boxes 12 medium peppermint candy canes
4 foot of Buffalo snow for tree skirt.
For those who can send more candy canes or hot chocolate mix to Kandahar, here is some helpful info.
Customs forms (post 496 for instructions in how to fill out)
can be got at U.S. post office as can 12x12 flat rate priority boxes for the troops, which can be mailed to an APO address for 12.95, 2 dollars less than usual.
I figured how to pack those Bobs candy canes with 12 in a box for 98 cents at Walmart. Two boxes lie flat with canes vertical/straight up in kitty corners and then put two other boxes turned 90 degrees so canes are seen horizontal into the other two kitty corners. Stack another layer on top and can get 8 boxes in that way and take the canes out of the remaining two boxes and lay them out on thin bubble wrap, and then overlaid with bubblewrap. Get 120 canes into a 12x12 care package pretty quick that way.
Trick to getting 10 boxes of cocoa mix in one box is easy, too. Cocoa Swiss Miss cost 1.29 at Walmart.
I really need a few more volunteers to send either a box with 10 boxes candy canes (cost 9.98 for canes and 12.95 for postage) to Kandahar, or to send them 10 boxes hot chocolate mix (found stacked on pallet in aisle next to candy at my store) (cost 12.90 for the cocoa, and 12.95 for postage)
A few people sending one box each will help a great deal!
Enterprise and jtill have been very generous donors, as you will see when I post the other boxes that will go out before Thanksgiving, but I need help with leg work of getting more candy canes and cocoa mailed out. THANK YOU ALL!
Now have a HAPPY THANKSGIVING!
MERRY CHRISTMAS! HO HO HO!
See post 496 for information on how to fill out customs forms for care packages.
“We wish you a Merry Christmas; we wish you a Merry Christmas”...
see post 496 for information on customs forms.
If still have questions, let me know.
Christmas care packages continue to go out. :-D
norton is sending two large boxes to FOB Joyce;
Total of 11 beef and 3 turkey sausages,
11 smoked cheddar and 5 jalapeno cheeses,
20 packets of hot cider and 40 cocoa mix
Mailed November 23, 2011, to base near Kandahar, 5 care packages 12x12
Box 1, THANK YOU to jtill for donating this box, insured $145.28, postage $15.80
red Santa hat with white fuzzy ball and trim
14 DVD movies:
Tortilla soup (Hector Elizondo)
Stand and Deliver (Edward James Olmos)
La Bamba (Lou Diamond Phillips)
Latin Kings of Comedy (sent as requested, but R rated for a reason, don’t recommend)
Honey (Jessica Alba)/Blue Crush/Jose and the Pussycats THREE pack
Mask of Zorro (Anthony Hopkins, Antonio Banderas, Catherine Zeta-Jones)
Song of Hiawatha (Litefoot, Graham Greene)
Thunderheart (Val Kilmer, Graham Greene)
Pow Wow Highway (A Martinez)
Smoke Signals (Irene Beach, Irene Bedard)
Dreamkeeper (Cody Lightning)
Rescue Dawn (Christian Bale)
Complete Sherlock Holmes, vol I (Sir Arthur Conan Doyle)
Complete Sherlock Holmes, vol II
Every Living Thing (James Herriot)
2 bags Halloween candy:
28 fun size Snickers
Reader’s Digest November 2011
Reader’s Digest December 2011
Sports Illustrated: College Basketball
Christmas theme stickers
Box 3, value $18.79, postage $12.95
THANK YOU to Lets Roll for boxes 3 and 4
14 boxes Swiss Miss hot chocolate (10 envelops/box)
1 box 1000 icicles (tinsel)
Box 4, value $11.76, postage $12.95
8 boxes 12 peppermint candy canes regular size and
47 individual candy canes bubble wrap cocooned.
Box 5, value $18.79, postage $12.95
THANK YOU to Kitty Mittens for boxes 5 and 6
14 boxes Swiss Miss hot chocolate (10 envelops/box)
1 box 1000 icicles (tinsel)
Box 6, value $11.76, postage $12.95
8 boxes 12 peppermint candy canes regular size and
47 individual candy canes bubble wrap cocooned.
Box 2 to Kandahar needs customs form done, but is packed with granola bars and movies. Also have 3 boxes movies, books, goodies for FOB Joyce that are close to finished, sponsored by Enterprise and jtill. Finally, lots more candy canes and cocoa for Kandahar, which will be going out Friday or Monday, but need sponsors, or a few troop supporters to help with postage or content costs.
It’s looking good!
Mailed December 1, 2011, to FOB Joyce, 2 boxes 12x12
Box 1, insured $166.54, postage $15.80
THANK YOU to jtill for pledged donation toward this box
11 DVD movies:
Reign of Fire (Christian Bale, Matthew McConnaughy)
Outlander (Jim Caviezel)
How to Train your Dragon (Jay
Unbreakable (Bruce Willis)
Lethal Weapon 1,2, 3, and 4 (Mel Gibson, Danny Glover)
Mo’ Better Blues (Denzel Washington)
Lawrence of Arabia (Peter O’Toole, Alec Guiness, Omar Sharif)
Frequency (Dennis Quaid, Jim Caviezel)
Most Secret (Nevil Shute)
Tunnel in the Sky (Robert A. Heinlein)
Sarum (Edward Rutherford)
Russka (Edward Rutherford)
Starship Troopers (Robert A. Heinlein)
10 Wet Wipes
1 bag corn candy
1 bag mallow pumpkins
1/2 bag pecans
3 little individual bags Halloween candy 4 corn candy, 4 Indian corn, 3 pumpkins, double Starburst)
1 magazine: Reader’s Digest October 2011, “Funny Power”
Box 2, insured $263.95, postage $17.70
THANK YOU to Enterprise for donation for this box
1 Santa Hat (red fuzzy hat with white fuzzy ball and trim)
1 miniseries DVD:
Jesus of Nazareth (Franco Zefferelli directing)
16 DVD movies:
Apollo 13 (Tom Hanks, Kevin Bacon, Gary Sinise)
The Right Stuff (Scott Glen, Sam Shepard, Jeff Goldblum, Dennis Quaid)
Star Trek (Chris Pine)
Hitch (Will Smith)
The Gods must be Crazy I and II
The King’s Speech (Colin Firth)
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (Chevy Chase)
The Santa Clause (Tim Allen)
A Christmas Story (about Ralphie and the bee bee gun)
Tyler Perry’s Daddy Little Girls
The Penguins of Madagascar
Ghostbusters I and II (Sigourney Weaver, Bill Murray)
The Mountain Valley War (Louis L’Amour)
Rider of Lost Creek (Louis L’Amour)
Kilkenny (Louis L’Amour)
Hondo (Louis L’Amour)
Last of the Breed (Louis L’Amour)
Ender’s Game (Orson Scott Card)
Teeth of the Tiger (Tom Clancy)
The Bear and the Dragon (Tom Clancy)
Glory Road (Robert A. Heinlein)
1 bag Butterfingers
3 candy canes
2 cherry Chapsticks
2 Imprimis newsletters (Executive Power in wartime; The Presidency and the Constitution)
1 bag Sunsweet dry mixed fruit
Mailed December 1, 2011, to base near Kandahar, 3 boxes 12x12
Box 2, insured $116.01, postage $15.80
9 DVD movies:
The Great Raid (Joseph Fiennes, Benjamin Bratt)
The Quick and the Dead (Sam Elliot, Kate Capshaw)
Night at the Museum (Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson)
Night at the Museum II, Battle for the Smithsonian (Ben Stiller,
The 2 documentaries on wolves were wrapped in Christmas paper and silver bow
Wolves: A Legend Returns to Yellowstone
Yellowstone: Valley of the Wolves; Christmas in Yellowstone
Louis L’Amour 3 pack: The Sacketts miniseries with Sam Elliot, : Conagher with Sam Elliot, ; Catlow with Yul Bryner
Fallon (Louis L’Amour)
The Key-Lock Man (Louis L’Amour)
2 boxes 30 Nature Valley fruit and nut bars
5 freebie paper perfume/cologne
3 Franklin Graham newsletters
1 box 10 Swiss Miss hot chocolate
magazine: National Geographic on The Bible, King James version
1 Happy Hanukkah card (signed Yehuda and Merry Band of Patriots)
1 Christmas card signed with jtill, Enterprise, Lets Roll, Kitty Mittens, patriciaruth, PGalt real names.
1 roll Scotch tape to tape the bow on the wrapped package.
Box 9, insured $59.10, postage $15.25
6 boxes 12 peppermint candy canes
1 box 22 peppermint candy canes
NatGeo hardcover coffee table book: Indian Nations of North America (Christmas wrapped with bow)
Box 11, value $14.82, postage $12.95
3 boxes 24 peppermint candy canes
3 boxes Swiss Miss hot chocolate
Nativity scene window sticker figures
2 boxes Reach mint waxed floss
Boxes 7, 8, and 10 for Kandahar are close to packed, and have one with Christmas presents for FOB Joyce to finish.
Anyone able to send hot chocolate to Kandahar?
I have another 120 candy canes to mail. I can pick up some hot chocolate mix today and get these mailed Monday. Will Monday be too late?
I can get the candy canes in the mail today but if I add hot chocolate, it won’t go out until Monday.
I also bought more candy canes but am having trouble finding cocoa.
Please send cocoa! My candy canes will go out tomorrow, so yours can wait till the cocoa goes with them.
THANK YOU! THANK YOU!
Mailed December 3, 2011, to FOB Joyce, 1 box 12x12
Box 6, insured $173.43, postage $15.80
11 DVD movies: wrapped in Christmas paper, ribbon, bows as three packages, one gold reindeer, one silver Christmas trees, one green and red holly .
Indiana Jones, Crusaders of the Lost Ark (Harrison Ford)
Indiana Jones, The Temple of Doom (Harrison Ford, Kate Capshaw)
Indiana Jones, The Last Crusade (Harrison Ford, Sean Connery)
Indiana Jones, Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (Harrison Ford)
Die Hard (Bruce Willis)
Die Harder (Bruce Willis)
Die Hard with a Vengeance (Bruce Willis)
Live Free and Die Hard, unrated version (Bruce Willis)
Wolves: A Legend Returns to Yellowstone (documentary)
Yellowstone: Valley of the Wolves and Christmas in Yellowstone (documentaries)
The Rise of Black Wolf (documentary about one of the Yellowstone wolves)
Tactics of Mistake (Gordon Dickson)
Conagher (Louis L’Amour)
52 peppermint candy canes
File box with two sets of dividers, one for movie, one for books with index cards made out for use of lending library.
Reagan 2012 Calendar
Popular Mechanics: WarPlanes
Sports Illustrated: World Series: NBA Preview; Sports in America; Penn State; The Perfect Pack
Christmas card for the troops signed with first names of all the Christmas contributors
Mailed December 3, 2011, to base near Kandahar, 2 boxes, one 12x12, one slightly bigger
Box 7, insured $72.07, postage $15.25
DVD TV series: Home Improvement, seasons 1-8 (Tim Allen)
10 boxes 10 Swiss Miss hot chocolate (2 have marshmallows)
4 individual peppermint candy canes
Box 8, valued at $5.95, postage $15.90
box that the Home Improvement 8 season set came in, which looks like a tool box, foil over cardboard with metal lock and metal handle. I decorated it with red bow and spray of green holly leaves and red berries.
36 peppermint candy canes
Mailed December 5, 2011 to base near Kandahar....
Box #1 12X12:
Hot Chocolate Mix ... 50 Dark Chocolate and 50 Rish Chocolate. Total 100 individual packages
Flavored CoffeeMate ... 50 each Irish Creme, Hazelnut and French Vanilla. Total 150 individual packs.
Box #2 12X12:
Hot Chocolate Mix .... 50 individual packages Dark chocolate
Flavored Coffee Mate .... 50 individual Creamy Chocolate packs.
1 4oz can French Vanilla Maxwell House coffee mix.
72 Candy Canes.
I have 48 more candy canes but need something else in box. Do we need more hot chocolate mix? If so, I can pick up more Wednesday which would put it in Thursday’s mail.
With the box I mailed today and the one you just mailed we now have totals of 700 cocoa mix envelops and 713 candy canes on their way to the base near Kandahar.
You have 48 candy canes left, that’s 61 more candy canes than cocoa. If I had my preference I’d say get 6 boxes of cocoa mix to go with the candy canes so they are even and can be passed out together by the chaplain. However, 700 is 100 more than I promised them, so if you want to keep the candy canes and forgo sending more boxes, I say give yourself a break! You did great!
I don’t know what you’re paying but my local supermarket was charging almost $4.00 a box for those rich and dark chocolate brands of cocoa mix. I opted for the store brand at $2.00 a box so I could send them to FOB Joyce and even out the cocoa and candy canes sent there, a total of 100 each to our adopted unit there.
I wiped out WalMart. That was great at $1.29 a box while it lasted.
So, my vote is “put your feet up and pat yourself on the back!”
I have one box left to send out to FOB Joyce, and then I’m going to do the same.
JustAmy (see post 637) also mailed out a final box to Kandahar today, with more cocoa and candy canes.
That brings our total candy canes send to Kandahar to 713 and total cocoa mix envelops to 700. FANTASTIC!!
In order to fill the space left in my box I added the movies I was going to send early January for the Superbowl. If anyone is interested in sending some knoshes or nachos for the soldiers in January, please let me know.
Mailed December 5, 2011, to base near Kandahar, 1 box 12x12
Box 10, value $44.11, postage $12.95
3 boxes 10 Swiss Miss cocoa
2 boxes 22 Peppermint candy canes
4 DVD movies:
Hoosiers (Gene Hackman)
Trouble Along the Way (John Wayne, Donna Reed)
Groundhog Day (Bill Murray, Andie McDowell)
The Longest Yard (Burt Reynolds)
7 packs 12 Orbit berry red sugarless gum
1 calendar 2012 Landscapes
2 perfume sheets
sheet angel stickers
2 angel card
I’ve been getting boxes of 50 cocoa packages for 6.00. This week they are on sale for 5.00. I’ll pick up a box of 50 and put 37 in with 24 candy canes. I will keep the rest of the cocoa for personal use and I will use the other 24 candy canes for Marissa’s class for Christmas.
When I get this box mailed on Thursday, that will be it until January. I will start watching the sales to see what I can pick up for later.
You are a wonder! I let them know that you will be mailing an additional 10th packages and to expect it around, perhaps just after, Christmas.
My mother had a theory (a rationalization for her tardy ways) that late mailed packages made it because they passed over the piles of stacked up boxes already mailed.
I’m going to send one more package tomorrow to FOB Joyce with the extra cocoa, but found that I had picked up a couple sugar free boxes instead of the regular cocoa yesterday at the local supermarket. That wouldn’t have been a problem except for some insane reason there are only 8 envelops in a box, and so I’m 4 short...
Your dedication is all that kept me from breaking down and gnashing my teeth and wailing...
Happy Holidays, what? :-)
Last package until next year!!
Today I mailed two boxes .. One 12X12 and one Medium Flat rate box. I picked up enough extra filler to fill the medium size box. LOL
Box #1 .. 12X12:
40 packages hot chocolate mix
40 individual packages Spiced Apple Cider drink mix
30 candy canes
12 1.4oz bags cornnuts (mixed flavors)
3 pkgs snowman Peeps (9 per pkg)
Box #2 ...medium flat rate box:
24 Nature Valley Granola Bars (Sweet and Salty Nut)
48 .8oz bags cornnuts ... 24 ranch; 24 barbecue
I tried to get a Christmas card in each box ... I’m sure I missed a couple. I sent 3 in these two boxes.
I sent a few extra candy canes ... I hope they make it there without breaking.
Nominations are in for JustAmy for care package packer of the year.
Our crazy troop supporter had some candy canes left over and so she went out and bought more stuff and packed two more boxes just to have something for “fillers” to send to Kandahar with the candy canes.
Check out her post above, post 643.
Trying to keep up but failing, I tried to rectify a mistake in buying accidentally two boxes of sugar free cocoa mix, and finding they had only 8 envelops per box. So I was 4 short.
So, I bought two more boxes of regular cocoa mix, stuffed them in the already packed other boxes of cocoa, and added another 12 candy canes, snuggled between the little bags of corn nuts. And in the supermarket parking lot I finished packing and then taping up the box.
Mailed December 7, 2011, to FOB Joyce, 1 box 12x12
Box 8, (actually 7, but couldn’t remember sitting in the parking lot without my note pad), insured $71.98, postage $15.25
6 DVD movies:
Independence Day (Will Smith, Bill Pullman, Jeff Goldblum)
Rio Bravo (John Wayne, Dean Martin, Ricky Nelson)
The Replacements (Gene Hackman, Keanu Reeves)
Trouble Along the Way (John Wayne, Donna Reed)
Mystery, Alaska (Russell Crowe)
The Rookie (Dennis Quaid)
6 boxes 10 regular cocoa mix
2 boxes 8 no sugar added cocoa mix
12 peppermint candy canes
18 bags BBQ corn nuts
1 magazine: Sports Illustrated, sportsman and woman of the year
740 cocoa and 743 plus candy canes to Kandahar. 116 cocoa and 112 candy canes to adopted unit at FOB Joyce.
Now, we are really finished for the year! (Unless mathluv wants to send a package for New Years.)
Merry! Merry! everyone!
Thanks, Enterprise. Now time to start thinking Christmas for my family.
NOTICE: All APO’s are currently cancelled. I’ll let you know when I get follow-on APO’s. FOB Joyce unit that was on Pakistani border is home now!!
2nd notice: price of postage for flat rate priority 12x12 care packages for troops has increased to $13.45.
Mailed February 8, 2012, to base near Kandahar, 3 boxes 12x12
Box 1, insured $140.86, postage $16.35
Random Harvest (James Hilton)
A Town Like Alice (Nevil Shute)
TV series on DVD:
Firefly (sci-fi series, season 1)
9 DVD movies:
Jeff Foxworthy Complete Incomplete Deer Hunter, 3 DVD set
Blue Collar Comedy Tour 3 pack (Jeff Foxworthy)
Sleepless in Seattle (Tom Hanks, Meg Ryan)
An Affair to Remember (Debra Kerr, Cary Grant)
The Sand Lot
King Tut (documentary course on Egyptian treasure)
Box of 30 Nature Valley granola bars, fruit and nuts
3 bags Hershey’s kisses (2 milk chocolate, 1 raspberry hugs)
2 Calendars 2012 (freebies)
2 National Geographic magazines, Jan 12, Feb 12
6 Sports Illustrated 12/19, 1/9, 1/16, 1/23, 1/30, 2/6
1 Readers Digest Feb 12
Box 2, insured $142.36, postage $16.35 (BIG THANK YOU to jtill for contribution for contents and postage)
10 Valentine DVD movies:
Somewhere in Time (Christopher Reeve, Jane Seymour)
Forever Young (Mel Gibson, Elijah Wood)
Notorious (Cary Grant, Ingrid Bergman)
Spellbound (Gregory Peck, Ingrid Bergman)
The Angel and the Badman (John Wayne, Gail Russell)
Random Harvest (Ronald Coleman, Greer Garson)
Goodbye Mr. Chips (Robert Donat, Greer Garson)
Murphy’s Romance (James Garner, Sally Field)
Enchanted Cottage (Robert Young, Dorothy McGuire)
Crossing Delancey (Amy Irving)
4 bags Hershey’s kisses (2 milk choc, 2 raspberry cream hugs)
2 bags Dove chocolate hearts (1 dark choc, 1 dark choc and cherry)
4 bags Tootsie pops, cherry
1 box Cheezit crackers
3 Imprimis newsletters on Reagonomics, Dept of Ed, Declaration and Constitution
Refrigerator magnet with historical U.S. flags
box 3, value $65.76, postage $13.45 (BIG THANK YOU to jtill for contents and postage)
3 cans 18.25 oz Plantar’s deluxe mixed nuts
6 bags Hershey’s Kisses (4 raspberry cream hugs, 2 milk choc)
2 bags cherry Tootsie pops
5 bags Dove hearts (3 dark choc and cherry, 2 dark choc)
3 Popular Mechanics magazines, Jan 12, Feb 12, and a DIY digital handbook