One of the conversations I have with other women on staff is what we would bring if we could go back home and re-pack...I try not to think of it in a negative light, but more as what I would tell someone who was coming here for the first time. For those of you who already have plans to visit: we are very much looking forward to seeing you and we are also very much looking forward to what you can bring us! :)
1. Spices--I brought some Italian seasonings (though why I didn't go out and buy new, full jars I will never know...and guess what? They have Italian seasonings here!). I think I would bring every spice from my cabinet that I use regularly. I was able to find salt, pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder easily. I thought I'd be able to find cayenne pepper easily...not so.
2. Baking supplies--I would bring baking soda, baking powder, vanilla extract, baking sheets, and cooling racks. I've found baking soda and powder but in very small amounts for about $5 each. I have yet to find any of the others. Measuring cups and measuring spoons are also impossible to find. And, they're small...I could have fit them in easily!
3. Broom--I know, this sounds weird, and it would be pretty impossible to pack, but the brooms here are really short and they hurt your back especially when you have wood floors and you sweep 3 times a day!
4. Refried beans--my kids love these and after 3 weeks without them, we went on the hunt for them at the international market in our neighborhood. We successfully bought the one and only can they had...for $4.50. If you'd ever told me I'd pay that much for a can of beans, I would have laughed in your face!
I know that there are many other things, but these are some of the small things that it probably would have been easy to throw in if I'd known. Oh well...you live and learn, right?