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Who doesn’t enjoy getting a package delivered?
We know you really care, you care a lot about your student and want them to be happy. Whether it is for a birthday, a little something to ease the stress of midterms or finals, a pick me up when they are feeling sick, holiday treats, or congratulations on a job well done; there are many options that will surely bring a smile to your student’s face. Sometimes it is nice to go with the local shops; most all deliver. Then again, there are some excellent national choices too. We have given you plenty to choose from– all of which our kids, interns, or we like. All you have to do now is decide what to send. There is variety there too. For instance; if you are looking for sweets (and who isn’t?) for a birthday, pick me up, Halloween, Valentine’s Day, religious holidays, or just because… we’ve got plenty of ways to show you care.
Where to start? A great parting care package gift that you can leave in their room or send as a package is this package of Open When College Pack envelopes. We suggest filling them with either a message, picture, or gift cards purchased in advance but we love the messages. When you take your first big test, when you’re sick, when you’re tired of dorm food, and more… a perfect parting way to express that you care.
Note: GF or V indicates gluten-free and vegan are available.
Locally we recommend:
- Insomnia Cookies: located near campus, Insomnia Cookies are a fan favorite among students. They even have special birthday cookie cakes!
- Orlando Cakes: available for pick up or delivery (based on how far)
- Publix – You can also have a cake delivered from Publix through Instacart and Shipt.
- Sweets by Holly – will deliver the most amazing cupcakes (12 cupcakes for $20, plus a delivery fee). Who wouldn’t appreciate a customized cookie cake or cupcakes on their birthday?
- Yumm Cake has everything from birthday cakes to chocolate-covered strawberries
- Sugar Divas Cakery – Located at 25 W Crystal Lake St., just south of Downtown Orlando, this small female-owned company can make luxurious cakes and cupcakes for any occasion. If you order a week in advance you can send them any inspiration or ideas you may have for the cake and they will do their best to make your vision come to life. If you have to order a little last minute, no worries because they provide a great selection of cakes that will take just 24 hours to make. They have both curbside pickup and delivery options.
- Butter Bliss Bakeshop – While they currently do not have a storefront location, they offer orders online for delivery and pickup in the East Orlando area. The best part is, they are starting to come to the East Orlando Farmer’s Market at Waterford Lakes on October 4th from 10 am-3 pm.
- Nothing Bundt Cakes – A staple place for a moist yummy bundt cake! There is a Nothing Bundt Cakes located right by campus on 626 N. Alafaya Trail. They offer big and small bundts for all kinds of occasions. You can either place an order for pickup or delivery.
National and delicious options include:
- Bake Me A Wish. If you’re looking for a full catalog of desserts to choose from, this is where you should start! Bake Me a Wish has cakes, cupcakes, cheesecakes, cookies, and more – all for a reasonable price! Plus, you can personalize your selection with any message you wish. GF
- Baked by Melissa – If you’ve ever been to New York, you know the name Baked by Melissa. These are tiny cupcakes that come in assorted flavors including cookie dough, red velvet, brownie, and more! You can get a box of 25 or up to 100 and send it directly to your student for any occasion! These are available for purchase through their website or on Amazon. Trust us, these are always a hit and they taste delicious! GF, V
- Debbie’s Doodle’s Cookie Company – They ship from South Florida right to your student and offer delicious, homemade chocolate-chip and brown sugar butter cookies. They come delivered in dry ice and then a birthday box with a card. From the presentation to the cake itself, it was seamless and delicious.
- Milk Bar Store – Don’t be fooled by the company name – Milk Bar offers some of the best cakes we’ve ever tasted! Think a Funfetti boxed cake that your student likely baked from time to time, but SO much better! They also have cookies, truffles, and pies – and anything you choose is going to have you eating the whole thing, it’s THAT good!
- The Dirty Cookie – Have you seen the famous cookie shots? If not, think of a cookie, but shaped in the form of a shot glass. You can fill it with milk, coffee, ice cream, or alcohol (21+), and you can pick a cookie shot in several different flavors! Is there a better way to celebrate your birthday, the end of an exam, or just making it through another week of quarantine? The answer is, OF COURSE NOT! Use code HUH15 for 15% off your purchase and enjoy it!
- Wicked Good Cupcakes – GF Our personal favorite is the Wicked Good Cupcakes Birthday Box. I sent these to my daughter last year and she loved them. Just make sure you get enough for their roommates. If we’re going by the name, you know these are going to be wicked good! These desserts come in a festive box filled with cupcakes in a small jar, plus birthday décor and candles if they’re celebrating a birthday. You can pick different sized boxes based on your budget. Plus, these last for at least 10 days without being refrigerated or your student can freeze them for up to 6 months (even though we know they’ll be devoured as soon as they open the box).
- Edible Arrangements If you are thinking something more along the lines of fresh fruit (and because who doesn’t like sweets, said no one ever), then Edible Arrangements is the way to go. From their traditional fruit bouquets to their fruit platters, the best gifts are Edible.® They even have strawberries dipped in cake batter and rolled in mini sequin sprinkles, miniature cakes made with fresh pineapple and dipped in white chocolate or you can create your own box.
They will think this is sweet too…
- Drizly – For students who are 21+ then parents can order any type of alcohol, mixer, and even energy drinks
- Maitland Chocolate Factory – A great idea for a cute surprise package, different from Edible Arrangements, and more local. They are located on South Orange Ave. in Maitland and they ship all over the U.S. They offer different assortments of chocolate boxes, chocolate lollipops, and chocolate-covered Oreos. Perfect for parents to send to their child on their birthday!
Flowers and Plants
Maybe flowers (or a cool plant) are something your Birthday Knight would prefer. Even better, combine balloons with flowers! Many florists – like most of these – deliver balloons as well. Locally we like:
- A Downtown Florist is located in Lake Eola (just 15/20 minutes away from UCF main campus).
- Artistic East Orlando Florist
- Colonial Orlando Florist has such cute options for flower vases like cars or grills!
- Elite Floral and Gift Shoppe
- Harry’s Famous Flowers has a great selection of flowers and vases.
- In Bloom Florist has such unique options including wines, rainbow flowers, and more! Same day service available.
- Zozo Flower Shop – Online flower delivery shop that serves the surrounding Orlando area.
- Market Garden Floral – located at 1418 Semoran Blvd, this family-owned company has a wide range of variety for flower arrangements. They also offer same-day delivery so with just a few clicks you can have a beautiful bouquet on someone’s doorstep.
- Novelties by Nadia – Flowers and More -This location is a little farther away located at 1115 N Ronald Reagan Blvd in Longwood, but they do deliver, and the packages that they offer are too cute not to share. They have “Ultimate Packages” for different occasions that come with flowers, mini balloons, a candy/snack basket, and a stuffed animal!
- Oviedo Florist Publix has a floral department AND they will deliver
Nationally, here are some of our tried and true favorites:
- Bouqs – These beautiful flowers come from eco-friendly farms that use sustainable growing practices, which means longer lasting flowers and no middlemen. You can buy individually or start a subscription.
- Balloons are always fun. Many florists will attach balloons to an arrangement or send a bouquet of balloons separately. Locally you can get them from…
- Balloon Magic of Central Florida – @balloonmagicofCFL
- Dollar Tree – inexpensive but doesn’t deliver
- Party City
- Target delivers balloons!!
Nationally these places send great balloons too:
Yes, Soup For You!
Soup can be nice when they’re feeling under the weather. Locally, you can show you care and get soup sent from:
- Bento also has udon soups.
- Domu – More ramen, and really delicious.
- TooJays chicken noodle soup is one of the best options. They also have matzo ball soup and the soup of the day.
- UCF Hillel
- Viet-Nomz has pho bowls which are pretty much soups and they’re delicious, according to our interns.
- And then there are Whole Foods, Lucky’s, Publix, and Panera too.
There are also national options:
More Care Gift Ideas
We understand that there are other things that are nice to receive other than food and flowers. One of my daughter’s favorites was when I sent her the comfiest sweats she ever owned. (Yes, I too now have a set or two.)
- Have you ever slipped into Lou & Gray sweatsuit? It’s perfect study-for-exams attire. Here are some other national companies that have some great options to bring a smile to your student’s face.
- Darden Restaurant e-gift card or a physical card – Olive Garden, Yard House, Cheddar’s, Bahama Breeze, Longhorn Steakhouse, and Red Lobster
- Greetabl – this is great when you want to send something small, thoughtful, and personalized. You also have the option to include gift cards to some of their favorite stores.
- Knackshops– They offer some great college care packages or you can make your own.
- Lovepop – don’t forget the card. They have some really fun cards for birthdays, Halloween, Get Well, Graduation, and Just Because. They even have sticker pops and gift tag pops.
- Mouth – great for care packages for birthdays, wellness in a box, get better, exams
- Cameo – This is a really fun way to indulge your celebrity-obsessed friends. Arrange for a personalized message from their favorite celebrity, whether it’s an actor, athlete, musician, reality tv star, or creator. You can arrange for them to get a personalized message from their favorite person. Depending on the person, prices vary.
- Our Campus Market – choose from healthy to gourmet for birthdays, move-in, Trick or Treat, Just Because, and more. Kosher, gluten-free, and vegan packages available – You can even include a gift card to one of their favorite places.
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