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Mail and care packages sent to BMQ / BMOQ



Greetings All

My Son PT John M. started basic training, regular recruit infantry not officer,
this week in at St Jeans
(ok I am not up to speed on the lingo and the abbreviations yet... but I am learning ;-)

I am that sort of Mom that likes to send cool packages to put a smile on the boys face
but I am unsure what are nessesary items to send he cant already buy at the Cannex
Some say send food ... some say dont send food... things like that.
In reading posts here it sounds like he can buy all his basic toiletries there etc...
Can some of you suggest for me please,
what are things you would have loved to have while you were there
that you could not easilly get?   Useful utilitarian items mostly rather than 'treats'

No point in wasting money on things he cant have anyway or postage on things he can get himself
Its going to cost us enough already to get to the Graduation in June!!

He did not bring any civvies except for the ones on his back
Will he appreciate a set sent to him as a nice suprise, slide into his favourite jeans you know...possiblly after the first four weeks or so?

Thanking you all kindly in advance
Army Mom in Hamilton    :-*

Army Mom

first let me say we need more mothers like you around, I know from personal experience that some mothers don't send packages to their son's or daughters while on tour or even on course, in fact many a guy in my platoon did get a care packahe from home the entire duration of Roto 0 in Afghanistan.

as for what to send, just about anything is a good idea, cookies were a big hit when I was at St Jean and a mother sent them for all the boys in our platoon, also magazines such as Maxim and Stuff are always good for a laugh, remembering that contact with the outside world is limited in the first 4 weeks. yeah your son will needsome civies because if his platoon are good little troopies they will get their first weekend leave pass to be able to hit the town and unwind. "other" magazines were always in high demand when I was at basic and on tour but some Monthers are not comfortable sending them and rightly so.
Hi Army Mom, it's great your son is in, it's going to be the time of his life! A couple of things about sending food to St.Jean, your boy will have to make a choice, either share it up with his group right then and there or keep it for the field (They are not allowed to have food on the floors, living quarters) So send enough for everyone, that way he doesn't feel singled out. I'm not saying to spend a fortune but candy or cookies go a long way. The Maxim, Stuff magazines are one of the hottest commodities in the military, and hey whatever he's into be it popular mechanics, whatever it will mean a lot. One other thing I would send is a handwritten letter, we've become so tech dependant that a hand written letter is harder to find than the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Just drop a line to tell him how proud you are of him, he will use it as a pick me up all through his courses!  ;D
My mom is going to be the same way when I go on course I'll have to give her these suggestions thanks guys :salute:
I have to concur with sending handwritten letters.   It doesn't really matter what you say in it, just that you sent it.   Just tell him what you've been doing, mundane stuff, etc.   When I was first on course fresh out of school my mom sent me so many letters some of the others on my course would do pushups for me (they used to make you do pushups for each letter you got).   In return I would let them read some of the letters since some of them didn't get a single one.  My mom even sent me a cake in the mail for my birthday!   It wasn't much to look at but it was the thought that counted.   I still have all the letters she sent me during those courses and I like to read them from time to time although they are SO boring now.     :)

Glad to hear he has such a great mom, good for you for caring so much.
I wish my mom would do stuff like that for me. She already told me she isn't happy about me wanting to join so I'm not expecting anything.

Maybe we could work out a deal and you could send me stuff instead?? lol just kidding  ;D
Got a sense of humour

Fuzzy cuffs and a pair of huge panties...............

When I was in Saint Jean they would open the care packages infront of everyone

Oh man that would be wicked funny....
Hi again Everyone

Thanks for all the replies and keep em coming
I am sure it will give others some good tips and help on what to send as well

Your child going off to join the army is a difficult time for parents I can see how some might not like the idea.  Just letting go of your 'baby' for the first time into the grown up world on their own can be a biggie especially for a Mom.  That world having guns and things that blow up well thats another dimension of worry.  But once its a go and 'for real' then its time to put your fears and worries over there and support their decision and them as the people you love.
Personally when he first wanted to join I did what I could to dissuade him and give him other options etc...  but John always wanted to be a police officer and was always a physical person and into Military stuff.  There are not a lot of options out there for you young'ins if you dont have connections, lots of cash or you are not the school/studying sort of person.  I know the Military is going to open lots of doors for John and give him a sense of pride and accomplishment I dont think he would get anywhere else.
Oh yes and a pay cheque to boot!  So its all good
It scares the SH*T out of me thinking of him in a harms way type situation... thats the worst part trying to shut my mind off thinking of something 'happening ' to him somewhere.  That and missing his smiling face and just having him around close by.
So I am sucking it up and dealing with it just like he is doing in St Jean right now!
If he can do it... so can I 

sub guy...I most definitely have a sense of humour and I have a few wicked things up my sleeve now that I know he likely opens them up in front of the rest...snicker snicker.

civvy3840... maybe let your parents read this thread and this Forum in general it may help them to  start to see things in another way?  I wish that we found it before my son left but its an absolute invaluable place for me now hes there.  You all are helping me so much thank you.
All of your kind words and positive thoughts mean a lot to me

Handwritten letters most definitely... I snuck one in his bag for him for when he got there...many more to come.  Lots of push ups in store for the boy  lol!

Heres a question....
How many people in his group approx?  Incase I send something for all of them?

well lights out for now here in Hamilton
will type again.... :-*

The avg Platoon size I believe runs about 30 recruits might be a slightly lower or higher.

Also Army Mom you need to watch out what you do send as a gag, you see something will last with your son through out his military career, heck I have stupid stuff my wife(fiance at the time) did 6 yrs ago that still gets brought up around the guys I did my basic with when I get to see them of course.....and you see guys talk so it spreads to your Battalion and follows you where ever you go LOL. Don;t get me wrong I'm not telling you to not do it just to not do anything seriously embarrassing.
Good Mornin'

(You mean he wouldn't appreciate the photos of him as a baby with bottoms up on the baby blanket  lol!!)

Thanks for the heads up HitorMiss..will definitely be discreet items, I was thinking more something that only he and I would understand the significance of.
And an absolute is an occasional disposable camera so he can have these memories to cherish and look back at this time of his life with his kids etc

bye for now
ArmyMom :-*
On my basic my mom always sent me socks. (Junk food and the such too, or course,) but socks- not the issue kind, but like white cotton ones- always seemed to go missing. And a handwritten letter was always nice. It's such a great feeling when the instructor comes in holding a pile of letters and one of them is for you.
Pretty much its all been said

Send anything...  its a nice reminder the world exists outside the barracks.
Don't send food - he'll have plenty
Send some clothing - if he didn't bring any
Good reading material - for time off
Interesting things...  sure I can vouch for that..  fuzzy pink slippers or giant panties are awesome

Sure, it will follow him the rest of his career. But he can either get mad at other people or wear
it on his sleeve with pride.  I think he'll do the latter. And its a great boost not just for him but
for his buddies and instructors to see that.  Plus, troops bond around things like that, which is
part of the point of training.  Memories from basic haunt you for the rest of your life.

You'll be fine... sounds like you got your head on straight... and in no time he'll be posted
to Borden to the PAT platoon.... and you can see him more often.
I am not a mom but the wife of one of the privates that started his training on April 12th. 

I have already sent a package to my husband with 12 pages of handwritten letters.  I guess that he is going to be doing a lot of push ups as well.  In fact I write him everynight as I miss him dearly and want to try to keep him as part of my everyday routine as possible.

I was struggling with what I should send him in addition to letters becuase he had called me and told me that they weren't allowed food on the floor so the clarification of just send lots of goodies makes me happy that I can send him it after all.  I have a few ideas of what else I can send him as well now thanks.

BTW his birthday is the weekend before graduation (june 12) so i may just have to send him a birthday cake in the maill.
HitorMiss said:
The avg Platoon size I believe runs about 30 recruits might be a slightly lower or higher.
A RegF Recruit Platoon is 60 strong.
As for what to send, it's been pretty well covered. Food and drinks are not allowed in the quarters, so send something that can survive a few weeks in storage. Mixed nuts, like trail mix, is a good idea for the field. Magazines are always appreciated as are local newspapers.
Army Mom, what date did your son begin training ?
60 strong Jungle wow I don't remember my course(9909B I think may have been 07) being that big, then again hey that was back in 99 before the recruiting push.....sorry to mislead you Army Mom I was outside my lane on that one.
Greetings all

In reply to Jungle... his dates are are April 12 till June 16 

Package gone today (with a little help from my friends here at Army.ca)... 
FYI : I send via Express Post and they said it would get there tomorrow?
And its not that much more expensive than regular mail just a couple dollars. 
I was pleasantly surprised.

As for sending food think I will keep that one simple and he can buy his own there
They feed you fine from what I hear anyway
I think I will just send him the 'odd and unusual' and keep him guessing and surprised.

more questions please... I got a million of 'em  ;-)
-Is there processing time once the packages arrives at St Jean Base IE, will it take a day or so after it actually get there, to get to him?
-What time is mail call (hes in his first week) or does it differ from platoon to platoon?
-Does he have to earn his mail especially packages, or is that something thats given straight when it gets there

No prob HitorMiss...things are constantly changing I am sure

toodles for now
Army Mom :-*
Mail is usually given out at end of day summation, and as far as I know there is very little delay. However there are probably 1000 troops at the mega at an given time so there may be a delay.(Putting his platoon, section and course serial on it helps  8)) If they are in the field they will not get their packages until they get back (packages that arrive while they're in the field)  :)
They can't hold your mail..

Wouldn't that be a form of harassment?!?!  :mad:

He'll get it
I suggest instead of sending enough cookies or candy for 30 people, just send enough for a few troops. He directly works with about seven people in his section all the time. Although it would be great to be able to share with everyone, it really isn't particle. Plus it can get expensive if you do that. I will confirm a few things like a handwritten letter, a picture or two pictures of yourself and other family members. Maybe his favorite magazine.  Last but not least in your letter to him tell him how proud you are of him and what he is doing for his country. It sounds dorky but i can tell you it means a lot to guys when they see that in a letter. Especially after a few weeks of going thrue basic, it uplifts their spirt alittle.  good luck and as stated above i wish more Parents were as fabulous as you were. Take care and good luck to your son
CTD said:
I suggest instead of sending enough cookies or candy for 30 people, just send enough for a few troops. He directly works with about seven people in his section all the time.
Again, a (RegF) BMQ Platoon is 60 strong, divided in 3 sections of 20 pers each. No matter what the quantity of goodies sent, it will likely end up being shared... that's the nature of the organisation !!  ;)