Saturday, February 2, 2013

Here Comes the SUN!!

Did you know - according to Google, Finland only receives between four and six hours of daylight during the winter?  That is just crazy nuts!  I was raised in Alaska and I remember it would get a little light during lunch recess.  We walked to school in the dark and we walked home in the dark.  I can't remember it really bothering me too much when I was a kid but then again, it was all I knew.  I do remember loving the never ending daylight during our brief summers.  I recall my mother saying, on more than one occasion, "David?  It's two o'clock in the morning!  We've got to get these kids to bed!"  Funny how if it's light outside we think we need to be awake...and vice versa.
I'm currently serving as the Senior Primary Chorister (best job in the kingdom!) and our Primary pianist is serving a mission in Finland.  This week we also had the honor to host a new friend, Elder Nepia from New Zealand.  His plane arrived a day earlier than he needed to be at the MTC so we got to host him for the night.  Way fun!!  Well, it's summer in New Zealand and it is definatly NOT summer in Utah.   We decided to send them both a Box of Sunshine to help with the dark winter doldrums.  This package has been so much FUN to put together.  It's so bright and cheery!  How could you help but smile when you open this one?

I found this adorable printable (above) ready and waiting for me at  CUTE!!  I printed them on card stock, cut them apart then handed them out to the Primary teachers.  The teachers had each of the kids write a short note or draw a picture to Sister Luedtke at the end of class time and then turned them back into me.  All I had left to do was tie them all together with a bow.  Ta daa!! Done.  You could easily hand these out to family, friends and neighbors instead of to a million kids.  Not everyone gets to serve in Primary.  I'm just really, really blessed.  For Elder Nepia, we just sent notes from our family.
While wandering around (cute as heck site!) I also stumbled upon this free printable (above).  So, so cute and beyond perfect for the bottom of our Box of Sunshine.  Love it!  I just printed it out, trimmed the edges and put it at the bottom of our tissue lined box.  Awesome!  Thanks, OllieBop!! 
Now is the fun part.  Fill your box with goodies...just search for anything and everything that is yellow or orange.  Avoid reds.  It's not too long until the color scheme gets all muddy and the bright sunshiney effect starts to go away.  Note:  the green packages that you see in the background will get opened up and separated out into smaller bags (see below).  

Here's a few ideas to get your juices flowing:

Frito's Corn Chips
Cheddar Cheese Pringle's
Lemon Head's
Orange Slices
Trident Tropical Twist gum
Butterscotch candies
Lifesavers "Orange" Mints
Orange flavored Tic Tac's
Quacker Chewy Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip granola bars
Starburst candies (original flavor)
Kit Kat bars
Apricot or Peach Fruit Leather
Ritz Crackers
Goldfish Crackers
Wheat Thin Crackers
Trisket Crackers
Skittle's Riddles
orange juice
Koolaid Orange or Lemonade mix
Crystal Light individual drink mixes
Lemonaid soda
Orange soda
Orange Crush soda
Mandarin Orange Slice soda
Lemon Cookies
Oreo Cookies - you know, the yellow ones
*Note:  Do NOT send fresh fruit of any kind.
Burt's Bee's
(everything comes in that cherry yellow packaging)
shower gel
Hawaiian Breeze air freshener
(it smells just like summer...or Hawaii, I forget which)
Post it Notes
small notebook get the idea.
Some of the bags of treats had way too much in them for one person and I wanted to make it easier for Sister Luedtke and Elder Nepia to share with their companions.  I made two sets of bag toppers that are designed to fit over the top of a Ziploc Snack size baggie.  I dumped all the candy into piles, divided them up into individual bags for each person, zipped them close and placed one bag topper over two candy bags and stapled them shut.  Is that as clear as mud?  Two bags of the same candy will be attached together with one bag topper.  Better?  You can download the bag topper here = click here for #1 and here for #2.  Print onto cardstock.
Note:  Line up the 'fold line' on the bag topper with a straight egde.
Run your finger over the edge to create a nice straight fold.

Fold the tissue over the top of your package and place a cover letter on top introducing the treasures found inside.  You can click here for the printable.  Your printable will print out as 8 1/2 x 11.  Just jot your message on a document and run the printable through your printer.  Easy peasy!!  What a FUN package to put together.


  1. You are the cutest ever. It makes me want to go on a mission just to get one of your packages.

    1. No YOU'RE cute! Thanks for being so supportive of all my hairbrained ideas. I love being in Primary with you!

  2. I just wanted to tell you how much I love all your ideas for missionary packages! I follow you on pinterest, and I always get really excited to see your pins and repins.
    Thank you so much for sharing with the rest of us! I have my first missionary out right now in South Carolina, and it's been fun to put some of these packages together. He has loved them too!
    Thank You!

    1. Well, aren't YOU just the nicest thing! Stay tuned...I've got lots more coming. My next in line just opened his mission call last night...Washington Seattle Mission! We are so thrilled! Just look at all those exclamation points. My junior high journalism teacher would be appalled! Oops, there's another one.

  3. You are amazing Cherylann. Seriously amazing! When I grow up I want to be just like... wait, never mind, that would involve growing up...

  4. When I click on certain things to download, it takes be to Once I am there, I am lost...not sure where to find certain things. I want the bag toppers and tags on your Box of Sunshine post...
    Amy - Missionary Mom of 2!

    1. Hi Amy. Wow! Missionary Mom of 2? I can't imagine...
      I just retested the links and while they do take you to they should open directly to the printable you want. Just click on 'download' which is sort of close to the top on the right side with a blue arrow. If you still can't get it to work, you can email me and I'll attach it to an email and send it right back to you. My home email is Where are your missionaries serving?

  5. Our daughter is in Concepcion Chile and our son is in Washington DC North. It's much cheaper to send things stateside!! I'm sure she won't get near as many packages...hope she won't be offended! :)
    I love your ideas...thanks for making these are awesome, as I am so NOT creative!!
    I will try getting the downloads again...thanks!

  6. Oh my goodness! I just sent out my first son on his mission two days ago & have been searching for ideas to be the best missionary mom ever! :) Your site is AMAZING and my cup runneth over with thoughts now. LOVE LOVE LOVE your blog with all the ideas. Keep them up - I'll be needing them for the next two years at least! Thank you for being so generous in sharing by the way - there are many of us not so creative people who need the extra help! Bless you!!!

  7. My pleasure! I'm sure that you're totally creative...just haven't had to tap into that creativity previously might be it though. It helps to have someone to be creative FOR. Glad that I could help to jump-start your new found creative side. Good luck to your missionary!

  8. You are amazing!! THANK YOU so much for all of your ideas! I just barely sent my first son to Peru and was finishing his first package today when I stumbled upon your blog...needless to say, I haven't mailed the package yet because I've been planning future packages now!

    When I tried to download the Sunshine Package cover letter, it took me to the box site but then it had a red box appear that said the download had been deleted or is unavailable to me. Do you have any suggestions for what I might be doing wrong?

    Again, thanks for all of your efforts that are helping lots of other missionary moms lives easier!!

  9. Hi Juli,
    So glad that I can help. I LOVE making packages for our missionaries. Not sure why you can't access the Sunshine Package cover letter. I clicked on the link and it took me right there. If you will email me your email address I will forward it to you as an attachment. Good luck to your missionary!! (

  10. Thank you so much!! My email is
    You are WONDERFUL!!