‘Tis the Season for Unique Gifts

 

Great gifts feel good to give and to receive. What better way to spark joy than to find a clever, curious, and/or beautiful gift for your favorite person (or even yourself). Stand out this holiday season by giving unique gifts. We’ve assembled items in our roundup below that you’ll wish you would receive.

Little Geniuses

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Aww worthy gifts that the little ones are sure to love.

1. Baby Elements Onesie, $14.95
2. Fiona Walker England Unicorn Head, $165.00
3. The Community Cloth Handknit Hat, $36.00
4. The Human Infant Project Book, $24.99
5. Uncle Goose Braille Alphabet Blocks, $42.00
6. Baby Armadillo Plush, $19.95
7. 20” Triceratops, $125.00

Neckline Subtleties

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Dainty necklaces are the perfect everyday necklace and versatile enough for layering. Sometimes a little sparkle goes a long way.
1. Ginette N Y Malachite Diamond 18kt Rose Gold Charm Necklace, $1050.00
2. Zoe Chicco Diamond Curved Bar Necklace, $650.00
3. Melissa Joy Manning Herkimer Quartz 14kt Gold Necklace, $300.00
4. Rebecca Lankford Love White Sapphire Rose Gold Necklace, $340.00
5. Dinny Hall Bamboo Oval Pendant, 22kt Gold Vermeil, $240.00

Quirky Under $150

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Practical home décor items that give that whimsical touch to any home.

1. Radiant Relics Cushion – X-Ray Skull Profile, $40.00
2. Periodic Barware, $9.95
3. Gummy Bear Red, Anatomically Correct – Limited Edition, $44.95
4. Alligator Bookends, $80.00
5. Duck Mirror, $99.99
6. Unicorn Skull Bell Jar Ring Holder, $80.00
7. Ice Dwarf Art Glass, $135.00
8. Heart of Gold – Metallic Plush, $24.95
9. Light Up Newton’s Cradle, $39.95

 

Make a Statement

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A dazzling piece can make a huge statement long after it is unwrapped.

1. Alexis Bittar Tribal City Crystal Encrusted Figurine Cuff, $495.00
2. Vilawain Iridescent Broken Chandelier Bead Necklace, $950.00
3. Eddie Borgo Europa Black Lace Agate Statement Earrings, $450.00
4. Rebecca Lankford For H.M.N.S Rose Quartz Butterfly Ring, $890.00
5. Julie Cohn Designs Eclipse Sapphire Ponyhair Bracelet, $395.00

 

Natural Habitat in Color

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Timeless natural specimens are the eye catching gifts you’re looking for. Truly one of a kind natural works of art.

1. Variety In Motion Butterfly Display, $660.00
2. Bottle Stopper, Natural Stone $29.95 each
3. Amethyst Specimen, $495.00
4. Lapis Gemstone Box, $3,995.00
5. Dugway Druzy Agate Geode Bookends, $295.00
6. Citrine Specimen, Brazil, $695.00

As usual feel good about shopping knowing that 100 percent of museum store proceeds benefits HMNS’s educational programs!

Looking for even more gift guidance? Peruse our 2016 Holiday Shopping Guide “The Thrill of the Hunt”, check out our Pinterest where we have additional mini guides. Don’t forget our social media; Instagram and Twitter where we feature our products daily.

Happy Shopping!

Give Back and Help the Scientists of Tomorrow #GivingTuesday

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At HMNS, our love of learning is evident in everything we do. We provide education programs for ALL age groups, from interactive labs for students to world-class exhibit halls to phenomenal films in our Burke Baker Planetarium and Wortham Giant Screen Theatre. Help us inspire philanthropy and encourage charitable giving during the holiday season by showing your support for HMNS. Your gift will play a pivotal role in introducing our 500,000 annual student visitors to the wonders of science and the awe of our natural world.

JOIN THE MOVEMENT

Help HMNS reach its  Giving Tuesday fundraising goal of $10,000!

You can be part of #GivingTuesday by showing your support of the Houston Museum of Natural Science! Make your gift of any size, then be sure to share your participation on Facebook and Twitter, using #GivingTuesday and #HMNS hashtags.

  1. Donate Today!
  2. Share #GivingTuesday and #HMNS on social media!
  3. Tell your network why you supported HMNS this Giving Tuesday! Download the #UNselfie form.

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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:

Q: How will the money be used?

A: Unless otherwise instructed by the donor, all Giving Tuesday donations will be directed to the Museum’s Annual Fund. The Annual Fund is the heart of the Museum’s fundraising efforts and provides for the basic needs of the institution.

Q: Are gifts tax-deductible?

A: The Houston Museum of Natural Science is a 501(c)3 organization. Your donation is tax deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law.

ADDITIONAL QUESTIONS?

If you have any additional questions about Giving Tuesday or giving in general, please contact us at 713.639.4629 or development@hmns.org.

Thank you so much for your participation in #GivingTuesday. Every dollar makes a difference!

Giving Tuesday is a global day of giving that harnesses the collective power of individuals, communities and organizations to encourage philanthropy and to celebrate generosity. Giving Tuesday uses the power of social media to inspire people give back in impactful ways to the charities and causes they support. #GivingTuesday!

Museum Collections: Cooler than it Sounds!

Oftentimes we find ourselves in social situations with people we’ve never met before. You may be in a doctor’s office, a school open house, or even at a social event in our Museum. While mingling with new people the same conversations invariably come up, with the subject matter being almost as predictable as your favorite pet greeting you at the door. The question we’ve all both asked and answered that amuses me the most is, “So, what do you do for a living?” Personally I’m okay with that question because saying that I work for the Houston Museum of Natural Science often results in responses like, “My children love that place!” or, “We’ve been members for years!”

Those are the typical responses I get when I omit the department I work for. How could the response be any different based on the department that I belong to? Well, I work in Museum Collections, and while for many that brings up mental images of stacks of old fossils and fragments of pottery, for some people it makes them envision a completely different form of “collections” work. Don’t get me wrong, as a struggling college student that was prone to creatively juggling bill due dates I can see where their mind processed the second word and completely missed the first. I help add to their consternation by providing my title of Inventory Manager, which I believe lends a mental image of tracking office chairs and Swingline staplers.

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Not office chairs and swingline staplers

It really isn’t like that at all — and now comes the fun part of letting you peek behind the curtain of what it is to do what I do. Our Museum has a huge collection of artifacts, fossils, animals, shells, and minerals. Our collection is so large that as you walk the halls of the Museum you’re seeing no more than 10% of what we actually own. Keeping track of that many items is a full time job. Actually, it’s four full time jobs.

Meet Emmalee, Kathleen, and Max; all three are Inventory Technicians for the HMNS Collections Department. Their task and mine is to create a record of each item’s location and to tie that location to the item’s file. When you’re dealing with numbers of items that border on the millions that might seem like an impossible task. Thankfully technology impacts all things, including the museum world. Here at the Museum we have software that allows us to document an item’s location down to the very shelf that item rests on.

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Anyone familiar with our Museum and has visited recently can probably guess that just knowing an object’s storage or display location wouldn’t be enough. Objects in storage or on display don’t typically stay in those locations and many of our pieces are rotated in and out based on current exhibitions at the Museum. Keeping track of an artifact or specimen once a curator has decided that it should be displayed or stored is our second responsibility.

So yes, my team and I work in a collections department but it might not be the department you first envision or the job you first thought we did. We work in a department that strives to preserve knowledge for future generations — and tracking dinosaurs really is in our job description.

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Travel through time with HMNS collections on Google Arts & Culture

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We’re proud to announce that HMNS and some of the most loved natural history institutions in the world have partnered with Google to bring you a new online experience! This new online exhibition is available on g.co/naturalhistory and allows people to come face to face with Jurassic Giants and browse through the most spectacular collection of natural history available in one place!

The new collection uses state of the art technology to give a new virtual life to extinct animals and tell fascinating stories about our planet’s evolution over billions of years. Viewers come face-to-face with Jurassic giants in 360 degree videos, giving a better sense of how these animals lived, and what it might have felt like to be in their presence. 

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For this exhibition, HMNS and natural history institutions from 15 countries created over a hundred interactive stories, sharing a total of 300 000 photos, videos and other documents online in collaboration with Google. The latest innovations in tech help bring the magic of these legendary venues to life, and give everyone a chance to reconnect with our evolution story and our planet environment in all its richness.

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The new online exhibition opens today at g.co/naturalhistory and is open for all online, for free on the web and through the new Google Arts & Culture mobile app on iOS and Android. You can watch all the 360 degree videos on YouTube.

Start exploring!