13: Bracelets for Opera and Ballet Lovers

If you are a personal friend of mine, you know that I love opera! I know this is all about Christmas with Kids, but let’s face it, many of us are looking for the perfect gift for our parent, spouse, sibling, or grown child here!

This first gift is a great way to commemorate your daughter’s first opera experience!

Check out this wonderful spiral chart from Cindy Battisti about Donizetti’s opera “The Elixir of Love.”

The Elixir of Love bracelet spiral chart

What girl wouldn’t want a beautiful Queen of the Night bracelet in a box with a pair of tickets to see The Magic Flute? I know that I’d love this! Check out all of these lovely bracelets!

This jewelry artist specializes in bracelets that the tell the story of an opera or ballet through symbolic beads and charms. They are very clever and beautiful. I really like that they can help you remember plot details. and it’s a great way to recall and celebrate favorite performances and events.

Did your daughter just sing her first operatic role at college this semester? Celebrate that with an opera bracelet!

Did your young ballerina dance in The Nutcracker this Christmas? There’s a Nutcracker bracelet for that! If she’s too young, get one for yourself to commemorate the event!

Please visit Cindy’s Facebook Page and her website for more information!

If you are a fan of The Metropolitan Opera’s Live in HD Series, join my Facebook group! That’s where I met Cindy!



70: Museum Memberships – A Great Family Gift!

Here’s a gift to consider for that special family on your list. Find out what’s available in your gift recipient’s area and get them an annual membership. In our area, some of the favorite places include the zoo, science museum, aquarium, children’s museum, art museums, and others. If your recipients already have a membership, it is usually very easy to add another year to their membership.

Photo courtesy of the Brooklyn Children’s Museum

75: Photo Calendars for 2010

Yes, that’s right. 2010. It’s too late now for 2009, but you could start taking pictures now to produce a gift calendar for next Christmas. What do you have to do? Take a themed picture each month of all the kids, assemble them next October into a calendar, get them printed, and give them as gifts!

Starting with October, here are some month-by-month tips to get great themed pictures of the kids for your fabulous calendar next year.


  • dress in overalls, photo in pumpkin patch, cornfield, hay bales
  • halloween costumes, trick or treat bags, candlelight


  • dress in aprons and chef hats, action photo of them cooking in the kitchen
  • Pilgrims or Native Americans, Thanksgiving props – harvest corn, cornucopia


  • dress in coordinating pajamas in front of the Christmas tree
  • Family Christmas card photo
  • matching scarves and singing carols


  • dress in winter clothes in the snow, skiing, or ice skating
  • New Year’s scene with party hats and horns


  • dress in blue jeans with red and white tops, photo on your sofa
  • cardmaking action photo


  • dress in gardening gear, photo of kids planting seeds in the dirt
  • St. Patrick’s Day theme, green clothes, shamrocks, etc.


  • dress in Easter clothes, photo in front of Easter lilies or baskets
  • rainy day theme with raincoats, boots and umbrellas, or splashing in puddles


  • dress in shorts and t-shirts, photo of kids playing in new grass
  • planting flowers, gardening, school’s out theme
  • Memorial Day theme, photo with relative/family friend in the armed forces


  • dress in play clothes, photo of kids posing with bikes
  • beach scene, swimsuits
  • vacation photos, roadtrip theme


  • dress in red, white, and blue, photo with American flag or other patriotic symbol
  • picnic theme
  • historical landmark theme


  • dress in back-to-school clothes, photo with backpacks and lunchboxes, holding an apple for the teacher
  • park theme with photo on the slide or swings, or all the kids hanging from monkeybars


  • dress in favorite football team fan gear, photo at a game or with a football and/or pompoms

If you wanted to, you could certainly go back through your photos from last year, or have a crazy photo session and dress up for each on of these photos for a 2009 calendar. It’s a good time to plan ahead, though, and decide if this is something you’d like to do for next year. If it is, mark these photo days on your calendar now!