I received an email telling me of a very generous gift that was given to a no-kill animal foundation in honor of, and in memory of my dog Max.  

The donation was made on line, and will be put to use in a way that is close to my heart.   An E-card was then sent to me, and included a message from the person who made the donation.

In tough economic times, it's not always easy to make a donation to charity.  But looking online,  I've discovered some ways to buy cool gifts for family members and friends that will also help out a worthy cause.

One is Unicef's Golden Chandelier Earrings and Note Cards.  They are inexpensive and the gifts help fund the United Nations Children's Fund programs that save and protect the lives of children around the world.   The website is www.unicefusa.org    And one other idea is smile squared toothbrushes.

A great stocking-stuffer that will brighten smiles, and for everyone purchased, another one will be sent to a child in need.  The price is $6.00.  Just a couple of ides that may help with last-minute holiday shopping.