Do you have a friend or a family member who has contracted a cold, the flu, or Covid-19 and you want to know how to make or what to include in a Cold, Flu or Covid-19 Care Package to send or drop off to them that is filled with items that will hopefully make them feel better or at least more comfortable? Then keep reading!
2022 Update: I originally wrote this blog post back in 2016 for a cold and flu care package and it’s been updated to include Covid-19.
I don’t know about you and your family, but we’ve been hit pretty hard with cold and flu bugs this past month despite flu shots and frequent hand washings. I came down with a bad cold on Christmas day and I was pretty hard on myself for getting sick – trying to figure out what I could have possibly touched, where I was, etc., and then my husband pointed out that it could’ve been airborne, that colds happen, and I should just get over it.
And then last week a friend got sick and I wanted to take her some cold and flu care essentials such as chicken noodle soup, warm fuzzy socks, throat lozenges, facial tissues, and tea and honey. And that’s when I came up with this idea to make a Cold, Flu, and Covid-19 Care Package.
If you would like to make your own Cold, Flu, and Covid-19 Care Package to send to a sick friend or family member, I’ve got all the details and more ideas for you below. Just keep reading!
First, you need a box or basket. Make sure it’s big enough for everything. A tissue box is pretty large, so if it doesn’t fit, you can always try using a few packages of travel-sized tissues.
The basket I used in my photos is discontinued, but here are a few links to some other similar-sized baskets:
- These tasseled baskets (I actually own these for my baby’s nursery and I LOVE them!)
- Cheerful, colorful, yellow wire basket
- Don’t forget small laundry baskets are also awesome as “gift baskets!”
- Making several care baskets for multiple people? Buy a 6 pack of baskets!
Pro Tip: If you’re making a Cold & Flu Care Package Basket to give in person, you can always include pajamas or a blanket in the bottom of the basket to give everything some extra height, like I did for mine, to make it prettier!
Then I filled the basket with what I think are all the essentials such as:
Coffee Mug, Tea, and Honey: Make it easy so all they need to do is add hot water!
Lots of Tissues: Because when you’re sick and your nose is running like a faucet, it’s inevitable that you’ll run out of tissues and then have to resort to using toilet paper which is so rough on your nose.
New Toothbrush, Chapstick, and Hand Sanitizer: This one is preventative. Have them throw out their old toothbrush and chapstick after they’re no longer symptomatic and replace them with new ones.
Also, remind them to use hand sanitizer! I like to use a spray hand sanitizer when I’m out and about like the Honest Co. Hand Sanitizer spray. I also keep a pump-bottle of sand sanitizer in my car.
Warm Fuzzy Socks or Slippers and a Blanket or Cozy Pajamas: Got to keep warm!
Target always seems to have cute slippers!
I own not one, not two, not three, but FOUR of these super (duper!) soft microplush blankets (not pictured) and they are my son’s favorite blankets!
Other items to include?
For Covid-19, if you can get your hands on any at-home Covid-19 tests, this will save your friend or family member from having to try to hunt some down. Also, KN95 (I use these and like them) or KF94 masks are nice to include if they do need to answer the door, go out to get tested, etc.
A few cans of soup! It’s an easy to make dinner that even someone who has the flu or Covid-19 can prepare. It doesn’t need to be chicken noodle, you can totally customize it for the individual’s tastes. My favorite soup is Well Yes! Tomato Basil Soup. Want some crackers to go with that soup? These Rosemary Crackers are the best!
You can also include a gift card for pizza, Door Dash, Grub Hub, or Uber Eats so they can order what they like and when they want to eat it.
This care package is also great if you live in the same town as your friend or family member, but don’t want to disturb them (or get sick, let’s be honest!) Just leave it on the doorstep, ring. the doorbell or send a text, and run!
A care package is nice, but the best thing to do is to prevent getting a cold, the flu, or Covid-19 in the first place, so here are a few tips:
- Wash your hands often. Washing your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds or more is the best way to prevent the spread of the germs. Do it often!
- Prevent illness by practicing healthy habits. Make sure to get enough sleep, eat a balanced, nutritious diet, exercise, and minimize stress. I know these things are hard to do. I truly do. I have three kids who are not old enough to be vaccinated during a fucking pandemic. I see you if you’re working on these things! I am, too! Even though all I want to do is eat cookie dough while staying up too late watching movies on the couch.
- Get vaccinated! Get your Covid-19 vaccine or booster. And while the CDC has made some shady recommendations lately (I see you CDC and your capitalistic 5-day quarantine bullshit!), they used to make good recommendations which included a flu shot for everyone over the age of 6 months. It is easy to get – just talk to your pharmacist. It the BEST way to prevent the spread of the flu. It does NOT prevent the common cold, but the flu is a devastating, serious illness that could put you out of commission for a week or more, or even worse, land you in the hospital with pneumonia or infect someone you love with a weaker immune system – like babies, the elderly, or those undergoing chemotherapy.
Let me know in the comments what else you would add to your Cold & Flu Care Package! I’m always looking for more ideas.