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A Military Christmas: 15 Gifts to Send a Soldier

Is a friend or loved one deployed? It’s time to pack those Christmas boxes.

Gift list for soldiers. Photo by Jason Swarr for Thinkstock, Getty Images.

If you have a loved one deployed, then you know it’s time to pack those Christmas Boxes. This is also a great time to pull together friends and family to help send extra boxes for your serviceman or woman to share with fellow soldiers.

Here’s a list of 15 things you can send a soldier for Christmas:

Packing Christmas presents for soldiers is underway at a Blue Star Mothers chapter.1.  Christmas Candy
Especially chocolate because it will travel well this time of year and won’t during the warmer months.

2.  Baked Goods
Cookies and bars travel better than a full cake.

3.  Individual Drink Mix
This makes even lukewarm water palatable for our men and women far away from home. Also, the individual packets are much easier to carry when they’re away from base.

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4.  Beef Jerky
Our soldiers need good quality snacks, and this is a popular source of protein while out on patrol.

5.  Nuts
Another great snack, packed with protein.

6.  Individual Snacks
You know the individual likes and dislikes of your soldier, but some good choices are protein bars, granola, small pop-top cans of fruit, etc.

7.  Handwritten Cards and Letters
Now is a great time to ask friends and family to write short cards and letters to arrive inside the box. Including handmade cards from children is also great. You can contact your local school, preschool and/or church and find plenty of teachers who would love to take this on as a class project.

8.  iTunes Gift Cards
Most soldiers have iTunes accounts and can get much more than just music. There are audio books, TV shows and movies available.

9.  Pictures
Yes, you can email them pictures, but something to have in hand often means the world to our loved ones away during the holidays.

10. Socks
For soldiers in combat uniforms, socks don’t last long, so it’s always a welcome gift. Look for black, brown or dark green.

11. Batteries
There’s always a need for these.

12. Toiletries
Travel size soap, deodorant, toothpaste, etc. But, if you’re including these things in a shipment with food be sure to double bag these items in zip-top plastic bags. Nothing’s worse than getting a box from home where everything is covered in mouthwash or toothpaste.

13. Wet Wipes
Great for so many things during deployment.

14. Playing Cards and Frisbees
Life on base, even a base far away, is sometimes boring, and these can help pass the time.

15. Books, Magazines and Puzzle Books
Again, both good ways to pass the off hours.

These are the things our local Blue Star Mother chapter always collects to pack and ship. I’d love to know what you’d add to this list. 

Click here to donate gift subscriptions to Guideposts Military Subscription Program.

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