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Smart Ideas for Care Packages for College Students

Send Your Child a Healthy Care Package:
A Nutritious, Delicious and Personal Alternative to the Traditional Care Package
By Jen Danowitz
for CollegeTipsForParents.org

Care packages are often loaded with junk. At first, the typical college student will smile at the “snack-size” packages of candy, cookies and punch mix; but after a few days of sugar-highs, a few pounds heavier and an empty, hungry feeling lurking inside, your child will be craving something more to help successfully pull an all-nighter to write that paper. Take advantage of sending a classic care package to your college-aged son or daughter to send along items that actually support your child—and really show you care. The following include suggestions for a healthy, useful and more personal care package.

1. Food, Food, Food!
Every college student loves the excuse of heavy coursework to chow down on junk food. However, there are many alternatives to these empty calories that will better support your child, keeping him or her healthy and focused. Items such as rice cakes or oatmeal have low sugar and caloric content, yet include nutrients your child needs to stay on top of a demanding schedule. Stay away from the Easy Mac and microwaveable popcorn—your child will appreciate the opportunity to chow down on these more satisfying snacks, which are not easily found in the dorm environment. Remember that most packages are not delivered directly to your child’s dorm room, so avoid including anything perishable.

• Whole grain breakfast and/or protein bars
• Dried fruit mix
• Mix together dried cranberries, blueberries, raisins and granola for a nutritious sweet treat.
• Graham crackers
• Rice cakes
• Serving-size cereal boxes
• Nuts mix
• Homemade granola bars
• Fat-free crackers
• Low-fat cookies
• Sugar-free water-mix flavor packets

2. Personal Items
Your child will surely appreciate these personal items and toiletries that are often hard to find on campus.

• Spare contact lens cases, lenses and on-the-go solution bottles
• Toothbrushes and floss
• Vitamins
• Tissues
• Most students don’t think to pick up some extra tissues—until they have a runny nose. Stay ahead of the game and ensure your child is prepared for these times.
• Cough drops and basic cold medicine
• Air freshener or room deodorizer
• Paper towels, cleaning wipes
• Stamps

The above items are obviously on the ‘practical side’, in part 2 of this article we will include a bunch of exciting ideas & fun items to include in the college student care package. see you then…