Shop Talk : Closer to home
The other day while my friend Tammy and I were walking our dogs she told me her younger sister Hayley, a freshman, called from college requesting a care package. Tammy agreed to put something together. We chatted awhile about snacks, Ethernet cords, pick-me-up gift cards, and some comforts of home in the form of snug blankets. I decided to share some of Tammy's ideas and how you too might send a treat to someone away from the Island.
An Islander who wants a reminder of home might like a Black Dog sweatshirt ($48) or drawstring pajama pants ($28), available in Oak Bluffs and Vineyard Haven.
There are so many choices all around the Island when it comes to a comforting throw or a pashmina. Sheila Allen on Main Street in Edgartown, has pashminas ($25) and matching purses ($22).
For those bottomless pits they call stomachs, make sure to include some Island edibles: Chilmark Chocolates or a pound of Murdick's Fudge, or a restaurant gift card available at Stop & Shop. They have various cards for restaurants, such as Olive Garden ($25), as well as Visa cards in various denominations that one can use to buy whatever else one might need or want.
There is always an item a student needs in their dorm room that they didn't anticipate when they moved in. An example is finding something that can make the thin, hard, old, and very uncomfortable mattress a little softer. East Chop Sleep Shop in Vineyard Haven has a nice selection of mattress pads that have some cushion and are waterproof, which is a good idea since most college beds serve as a dining table, study area, and couch.
Practical is good. By now the college student realizes there isn't wireless Internet like there is at home, so they better have an Ethernet cord to connect to the web (the long version gives them the most freedom) and a surge protected power strip to expand the one outlet they have. Advanced Computer Solutions in Vineyard Haven, across from the Black Dog Café, has both available ($9.99 and $40, respectively) along with AC adapters (laptop chargers) in case your student forgets to bring theirs home with them at the holidays.
Finally, dorm students can always use some more toiletries. If you visit Conroy Apothecary in West Tisbury, you can find not only their standard needs, but maybe a fun gift or card to let them know you miss them. For the ladies, Rouge Luxe Apothecary in Oak Bluffs is a must for more personalized bath and beauty products.
Not that college students have loads of free time, but a new DVD is always a nice to have. Hollywood Video in Edgartown has both new and previously viewed DVDs for sale.
A subscription to The Martha's Vineyard Times might also be a great way to help them unwind and feel that they are not so far away from home.