With love from Home
There’s nothing quite as exciting as going away to your first overnight summer camp, but sometimes the prospect of being away from home can be a bit daunting—even for the most courageous and independent kids, and those who’ve done it all before. To help your little travelers make camp feel more like home, consider putting together a surprise care package to send along with them. It can help make the transition a little easier, and remind your kids or grandkids that they’re loved and missed.
Before you get started, determine whether it’s better to pack your care package in your child or grandchild’s luggage or send it along later via mail. Also, check the camp’s rules to make sure that whatever you’re planning to put into the box is allowed at camp, since some may restrict treats and the number of toys each camper is allowed to have (cabins aren’t usually very big). Some camps don’t allow care packages at all but do encourage letters, so make sure to double check. Once you have all the rules and regulations sorted out, the fun part beings!
12 Great ideas for camp care packages:
- Practical items like an extra roll of toilet paper, band-aids, a flashlight (with fresh batteries) and a new tube of toothpaste.
- A pair of cozy new socks and pair of clean underwear just in case all the others have vanished in the laundry.
- Stationary with envelopes that are pre-addressed and stamped to make writing home even easier.
- A small stuffed animal to snuggle with at night.
- If you have a family pet, a photo of Fido or Fluffy that your child or grandchild can show to new friends.
- Activity books containing fun things like crossword puzzles, mad libs and word searches for those rainy days and free time under a tree in the shade.
- A deck of cards.
- If allowed, homemade Rice Krispies Treats (which are gluten and nut-free!).
- A book, and maybe even a journal with a brand new pen.
- A little something for the whole cabin! Sheets of stickers, fun temporary tattoos or friendship-bracelet making supplies would be a fun surprise for bunkmates
- An address book so your child or grandchild can write down the contact information for all those new friends made during camp.
- A Frisbee or a foam ball.
Whatever you decide to put into your care package, make sure to also include a note from Mom and Dad or Grandma and Grandpa to let your little one know how much you love them and how much they’re missed. Tell them how proud you are of them for being so brave and grown-up, let them know you can’t wait to hear about all the adventures they’ve had at camp, and suggest that their very favorite dinner might be on the table the day they arrive home. Odds are that letter will be what they treasure and remember most.
For more tips on what to include in a summer camp care package visit AboutParenting.
411948H CAN/US (07/15)