It's a real pickle to be in. You have to think of something that would survive being shipped in the mail that far but is still special. Something they can enjoy but that won't take up a lot of space. Something that is useful to them but not against regulations. It's difficult to come up with ideas for Christmas, for a birthday, for Valentine's Day. So I've done some pondering and came up with a list of ideas of personalized gifts that you can send a soldier who is deployed (or away for training.) Hopefully it will get the juices flowing.
- A Love Letter - This may seem cheesy but you would be surprised how much they crave that feeling of being loved over there. Surrounded by pain and anger all the time, your love written out in a simple letter reminds them that the whole world isn't like that. It gives them the hope and the strength they need. Even the tough boys need hugs.
- 101 Reasons Why I Love You - Why not sit down and make them a list of all the reason's you love them. Get a little silly too and tell them even the quirky things you love. Make them see just how special they are.
- Baked Goods - Bake them a batch of their fave cookies. To keep them fresh put them in a Ziploc bag with a slice of bread. Or get creative and bake them a cake in a jar. Here is a link on how to do that and some good tips about sending food overseas. http://baking.about.com/od/giftideas/ss/canningjarcakes.htm
- Love Coupons - Make some homemade love coupons that promise him all kinds of fun when he gets home (maybe even a little over the phone or Skype *wink*.)
- Make him a special homemade card complete with your best artistic skills! =)
- Make him a photo book of pictures of what is going on in your life (and your kids lives if you've got them) back at home. Here are two great sites to do that. http://www.blurb.com/ and http://www.shutterfly.com/
- Make him a home video or slideshow of pictures for him to watch on his computer with messages from everyone he knows and loves back home.
- Sew him a blanket. Fleece tie blankets are very simple to make if your not good with a needle. http://www.allkindsofbabystuff.com/no_sew_fleece_blankets.html
- Personalize a mug or t-shirt or pillowcase. There are several sites online that will do that.
I hope that gives a few of you some ideas in the future. If you think of any others that I don't have up here leave a comment telling about it!
Keep L i/o ving!