December 15, 2007 at 9:14 PMI could be helpful, and ask all of you what you would really want for a holiday gift so your relatives could go to V.com and find your heart's desire. But I think it's more amusing to see just how many of us have received various kinds of violin-related gifts over the years. I've listed a good number of typical knick-knack kinds of gifts, as well as some violin accessory kinds of gifts, just to get the ball rolling.
As a youngster, I actually did not want to pin my identity on the violin, and I bristled at getting violin-related kitsch. "Do NOT get me some frog-playing violin figurine!"
Then a nice boy, not one who took music lessons, in my seventh grade class called me up one night before Christmas, "I, uh, well, have a present for you..." and he showed up on my snowy doorstep with a sweet little ceramic angel, playing the violin. It melted my heart. I came across it recently, when I was cleaning, and I was glad I'd kept that angel safe; my friend died young.
I suppose in some way, my entire life's story could be told through violin-related gifts. There's the beautiful Russian music box, which played the "Sugar Plum Fairy," given me by students who were sisters, and they'd bought it with their allowance. To my great chagrin, it was lost during a move.
My Christmas tree is full of the little ornaments given me by students, and I regularly wear the musical jewelry they have given me.
I couldn't resist including this on the list: the piano scarf, as I consider this to be THE campiest music-related item on the planet -- a true classic.
What little violin-related gifts have been given you, and what is their story?
I like the cards the best. I keep them all.
The niftiest present I got last year was an awe-inspiring, perfect, huge pine cone. My student's Mom had picked it up off the ground while she was on one of her walks, and gave it to me as a fun companion to a grocery store gift card. The gift card was awesome (Attention, parents of violin students: A grocery store gift card is the gift that keeps on giving!), but I adore this pine cone. It has a place of honor on the coffee table.
This year, I asked Santa for:
1) Permanent World Peace.
2) "The Potato Eaters" by Van Gogh.
3) The "Soil" Strad.
4) A blender. My old blender died about nine years ago...
I just received some early gifts, a new Coda Diamond GX bow, with two cakes of rosin, one dark, one light. This was just yesterday.
I ask for:
1. (Permanent World Peace) above all!
2. Free ad from Violinist.com.
3. New Gamut Strings.
That all. Oh Anne, I have a new blender. I'll will trade it with you for the "The Potato Eater" by Van Gogh, if you get it.
Thank you Laurie, for this website!
Merry Christmas to everyone!
All the best!
For Christmas this year I want free tickets to the Takacs Quartet's entire next season. Or that unforgettable Storioni I played in Salt Lake City. Either one, I'm not picky. :)
Years ago my mother gave me a violin playing porcelain doll, I think for a birthday. A friend gave me a couple of pictures of music stuff. But mostly I buy things for myself (a real pretty painting, several little glass violin figures).
I think the most useful thing I got as a gift was a zipped waterproof music folder, with music notes on the outside, for carrying music. Full-size rectangular, cloth-covered violin and viola cases like the ones I have now have functional music pockets, but the series of shaped, hard plastic, bullet-proof cases I had as a kid did not. My daughter's and her friends' don't either. So she uses it now. It's pretty old, so I've had to (discreetly) tape up the bottom corners so the pencils don't fall out.
-A round stoneware jar, with "Ashes of Problem Students" engraved on the front.
-Violin mugs. Many, many mugs.
-Violin bottles, 3, including the "Nannerl" bottle.
-Violin fridge magnets.
-Violin necklace charms.
-Violin stand-alone vase.
-Violin wall vase.
-Violin lamp, lights up from the inside!
-Violin-playing cat figurine.
-Violin crystal blocks, 3, laser-etched.
-Violin pencil sharpener.
-Violin candy, the Reber-Mozart Kugeln.
-Violin keychain, and it "plays" songs.
-Miniature violins, (three) in cases, with bows.
-Miniature violin, hanging on small display rack.
-Violin brass wall-hanging.
-Large angel-playing violin.
-Red/Green metallic violin that "plays" Christmas songs.
-Crystal violin-playing snowman.
-Violin-playing snowman, battery operated.
-Nutcracker, gun removed, violin added!
-Violin embroidered Christmas stocking.
-Violin ornaments, and angel-playing violin ornaments, too big for the tree, hanging off the CD shelves.
-Christmas tree ornaments, 37 and counting...
I got my first two from my brother, when he was in Moscow. He picked them up at a street kiosk, years ago. The other one came from a student.
(Off to decorate the tchotchkes!)
-Violin light switch plate.
-Violin sun catchers.
-Violin stained glass window, dinner plate sized. That is probably my favorite. My Dad had it custom made for me about 15 years ago. I hang it from a chain in front of the window. This hippie-type artiste named Charlie made it. Evidently, Charlie thought the violin was quite tricky to do, but it looks marvelous.
But from my parents/family, I get musical gifts all the time. I inevitably get at least 1 CD every year. :) Last Christmas my parents gave me a shirt that said "without music life would Bb [flat]". But by far the coolest musical gift I've ever gotten is A MANDOLIN. Now if only I could actually play it . . . :) . . . someday!
"Is this a commentary on my tidiness, or a new mode of transportation?"
Just kidding. It is terrific.
Also, I forgot to include the violin towels, and the violin plates. Very cool.
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