There are several different ways to ship our things to Africa and each method has its own challenging set of rules.  Some shipments do not allow aerosols, combustibles, or (you’ll never guess) oregano, as the spice is used to train drug-sniffing dogs.  In our tiny condo, we’ve done our best to make piles for air cargo (400 lbs, arriving in 2 weeks), household effects (7,200 lbs. arriving in 2 months via boat), airplane luggage, storage, and consumables (2,000 lbs. arriving in 2 months).  Consumables are any products we’ll need in the next two years that (a) aren’t sold in Tanzania, (b) are extremely expensive in Tanzania or (c) aren’t up to American standards.  This is where Costco comes in.

Of course, we have no idea how many consumable items we’ll need over the next 2 years, but below is a small sampling of what we purchased this week at Costco:

  • Toilet paper, 96 rolls
  • Razor blades, 34 ct.
  • Sunscreen, spf 50, 9 bottles
  • Bug repellant, 6 bottles
  • Toothpaste, 10 tubes
  • Shampoo and conditioner, 240 oz.
  • Windex, 1.5 gallons
  • Oatmeal, 10 lbs
  • Old Spice Body Wash, 6 bottles
  • Brownie mix, 4 boxes
  • Cotton balls, 600 ct.
  • Strawberry jello, 6 boxes (not sure what I was thinking here)

Having watched us bring things into the house for the last week, one neighbor thought we were moving in.  I assured him that we were definitely moving out.  As you can see, the pile takes up some precious square footage in our condo: