Says Kristen: "I'm hoping you can help me find a hidden treasure of my own for my sister. She is starting a new chapter of her life and moving to England with her husband and my beautiful one year old niece. Although I'm beyond excited for her and am planning to visit (a lot), I would love to send her off with a clever parting gift from me. My sister is uber-smart, the consumate professional and when it comes to fashion and decorating, her style has always been classic and casual yet stylish. I, on the other hand, have always had a more playful style, often lacking on the practical side. Although we are polar opposites in absolutely every way, we have grown very close and I will hate to lose her. I would love it if you could find something (I'm open to anything from jewelery to household nick nacks) that will remind her of me whenever she looks at it."
Hi, Kristen! This is Marian, and I know what it's like to be the impractical one of a pair. Your sister's move sounds really cool, but daunting, and I hope that some of the following items will keep a smile on her face!
Striking a balance between practical and sentimental is this 1) Bulova dual time desk clock ($63), which will show her the time both on her side of the Atlantic and yours, so coordinating phone calls will be simpler for her. (I dig the retro-futuristic look of the thing, too.) On an interesting and patriotic note, these things that look like little ruby earrings aren't ruby at all - they're 2) bixbite ($160), which is a red form of beryl (green ones are emeralds) that is found only in the United States. It's crazy rare, which is why I'm including an auction item in the first place.
On a more whimsical and fish-out-of-water note, we have this 3) hopelessly out-of-date 1956 guide to England from the American Geographical Society ($8), which should give her a giggle, and 4) Sting's Nothing Like The Sun ($10), which has a title drawn from one of Shakespeare's sonnets and features the classic "Englishman In New York", if she might want to dance around her new residence singing "whoa-oh, I'm an alien, I'm a legal alien" from time to time.
And for your niece, there's an introduction to British literature: 5) a stuffed Tigger ($20), modeled after the original illustrations in the Pooh books. I went with Tigger, because, well, if your sister is Owl . . . no offense meant, of course. We LOVE Tigger around here.
Safe travels to your sister, Kristen! Thanks for thinking of us!