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When I was six or seven, my aunt and uncle gave me a sterling silver charm bracelet. Over the years, I added charms whenever I visited interesting places. My mother often bought me several charms at once, and had several custom made. Silver charm necklace

By the time I was an adult, the bracelet was so full of charms it was completely unwearable. A jeweler recommended I place the charms on a silver chain. She sold me the split rings, and gave me a tool, which made it easier to open the rings and attach the charms.

I wore the necklace a handful of times, then stashed it in a ceramic pot in a display cabinet. I recently discovered the necklace, and was surprised at how random charms added in my teens took on meaning later in life.

Some of the charms include:

Animals

  • The original charm was a delicate horse, which continues to be one of my favorites.
  • The charm of a longhorn is a very detailed with majestic horns. I placed is towards the back of the necklace because it lacked meaning. However, when I moved to Texas and saw longhorns, I was instantly captivated with these incredible animals, and subsequently quit eating beef. I also have a charm of an oil derelict, which may have been a prediction to Rich and me moving to Texas.
  • I’ve always like rhinoceros so it’s no surprise I have a rhino charm.
  • I’m not sure how I ended up with a charm of a six-point elk

Marine

  • One of the first charms I received was a sailing vessel with multiple masts. It was created by a jeweler in Tarzana, California, and originally cast in gold. My mother asked to have it remade in silver.
  • I have no idea how anchor and rope, starfish, swordfish, and boat wheel charms ended up on my bracelet. I don’t recall purchasing or receiving them. Unexpectedly, Rich introduced me to sailing, and I ended up getting bare-boat certified. One day, we look forward to owning a sailboat.

Places I Visited

  • Tinkerbell from Disneyland
  • Stagecoach from Knott’s Berry Farm
  • Thunderbird with inset turquoise from Mammoth Lakes, California
  • Dutch shoe from Solvang, California
  • Flamingo from San Diego Zoo
  • Buddha from San Francisco Chinatown
  • Bear and cub from Yosemite, California
  • Pineapple given to me by my grandparents who went Hawaii. My stepchildren grew up in Kauai, and Rich lived there for several years.
  • Kokopelli from New Mexico

Personalized

  • Four charms that represent my parents’, brother’s and my astrological signs.
  • Mortarboard with a pearl, given to me when I graduated from high school.
  • Mortarboard inscribed with PSU (Portland State University) and the date I graduated.
  • Round charm that represents when I graduated from either elementary or junior high school

Random

  • Dragon, which maybe represents future interest in Game of Thrones (kidding)
  • Two fairy charms. There’s a third, which I never placed on the necklace, and carry in a cloth bag in my purse. She’s a parking fairy who ensures I can find a parking space even when the possibilities are remote.
  • Bird cage with a bird inside. Maybe it meant I’d marry a man with several birds.
  • Frog with a crown. Rich turned out to be a prince, but in mortal skin.
  • Helicopter. I’ve been in a helicopter twice, both as birthday gifts from Rich.
  • Skis. My mother’s lover after my father died (and the person she lived with prior to meeting my father) had a ski school and summer camp in Mammoth Lake, California
  • Large filigree bell, three little bells, heart with a key charms
  • Cinderella’s coach, woman who lived in a shoe, cuckoo clock, and merry-go-round charms
  • Fisherman, and fishing gear charms to represent my brother who fished
  • Two airplanes, one a jetliner, and another a prop plane
  • Ballerina, bicycle, flip phone, and eagle kachina, which I definitely picked out!

Musical

  • I can’t sing or play an instrument, but I guess to represent my cousins who are musicians, and my mother’s interest in playing the piano I have a piano, clef note, ornate series of notes, gramophone, and a man on a park bench playing a guitar (my mother thought it represented her lover holding a skis).
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