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Martha Thomas, Editor
When it comes to gifts, sometimes we know ourselves best In my early 30s I decided to just go ahead and buy myself a charm bracelet. I found a gold link bracelet and began purchasing charms: a tiny pair of horses was my life in New York City, where I occasionally treated myself to a canter in Central Park. I bought a Viking ship after a trip to Norway, a tiny Michelangelo “David” in women_want_braceletRome and a violin that seemed to foreshadow heartbreak.
Each charm on that bracelet is a piece of my life – including such later additions as a silhouette etched with my daughter’s date of birth – and as a whole it is empowering. If I’d waited for a husband or partner to realize that I had always wanted a gold charm bracelet, I’d still be waiting.
Sometimes it’s just easier to give ourselves what we want than to wait for someone else to figure it out. Of course what we want is complicated. Is a piece of jewelry really the answer, when what we really crave is the partner who can figure it out? Furthermore, how can we be so hopelessly materialistic when there is hunger in the world, and children who can’t read?
We asked a handful of women, friends of the magazine, friends of all Howard County women, what they want – for the holidays and the coming year. Some of these women are known for all that they give, and it was hard to drag wishes out. So we offered them a chance to talk of their dreams – world peace, literacy, food justice – as long as they also shared an actual material desire. So here it is: What women really want.
To see the full story, please visit Philanthropy & Volunteering – Getting It Right When It Comes To Giving.

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