Give Thoughtful Care Packages

Give Thoughtful Care Packages
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Do you have a “go to” list for care package items when a friend is in need?

Bookmark this page for your “go to” list for thoughtful care package items. Be the friend who gives generously and thoughtfully when a friend is in need, without asking “what do you need.” Whether it’s the stress of caring for a sick family member, sitting bedside with the dying, or trying to hold the family together after a traumatic incident, the same basic needs exist…food and rest. 

Putting together a small package of helpful items and dropping it off on a friend’s porch says so much. It’s a hug, a prayer, and a meal all wrapped up in one. Before you stop reading because your friends live too far away, most of this could be done by restaurant or grocery delivery services, too. Don’t let distance keep you from helping out. 

Over the years, friends have generously and thoughtfully taken care of my family during hard times. I remember a meal taken to MY house for my kids because I was away at my parents house caring for them. I remember a bag full of homemade cookies that got us through 4 am bedside vigils. I remember a grocery bag with paper products and toilet paper because they knew we would not want to leave the house that week. I remember multiple containers of vegetable soup and a huge pan of pumpkin chocolate chip muffins, enough to feed everyone that came through the house for several days. I remember not asking for any of it but being so grateful during the moment. I was fed, hugged, and loved. In the moments of stress and early morning hours, I was not as alone as I felt.  

Over the years I’ve created a list of food and products that are pretty easy to put together and take to a friend. I don’t take all the items, but just pick what will be most appropriate for the situation. I always take the items in disposable containers so there’s nothing to return to me. If several items go together to make a meal, I often list that on a note in the bag. The person opening the front door might not be the person making the meals so I try to make it easy on everyone.

Foods that are easy to grab and eat no matter the time of day:

Chicken salad and mini croissants

Hearty soups (in several smaller containers)

Individual salad bowls

Breakfast bars, granola bars, power bars

Individual bags of trail mix or nuts

Mini charcuterie snack boxes

Whole fruits

Apple sauce cups

Yogurt cups

Fresh veggies, washed and cut

Mini hummus or guacamole

Individual bags of pretzels

String cheese

Hearty muffins

Hard boiled eggs

Oatmeal packets

Cookies with oatmeal

Mints or gum or mini chocolate bars

Bottled water in small sizes

Tea bags

Household items:

Paper plates


Coffee to-go cups with lids

Plastic silverware

Sandwich bags

Tissues (mini packs and a box)

Toilet Paper

Plastic cups

Sanitizing wipes

Paper Towels


Make ahead freezer meals (with ingredients list and cooking directions)

Charcuterie board or individual boxes

TV dinners

Frozen individual servings of soup

Food prep delivery service

Gift card for a local restaurant with take out or delivery

Giving some food goes a long way to helping a friend have more time to eat and rest, especially nutritious and easy to fix foods. To give means to present voluntarily without expecting payback, but we know that the one who gives generously and thoughtfully DOES get payback. The satisfaction of giving to a friend in need is the reward. Even on a limited budget, it’s easy to grab one or two of these items on a shopping trip to keep on hand to share with a friend when the occasion arises.

Share in the comment section if you have a favorite freezer meal or soup recipe you like to take to friends. 

Table Talk: What is your favorite meal to take to a friend? What’s the best care package you ever received?


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