Bon Voyage: Cartagena de Indias, Colombia

We arrived in Cartagena yesterday afternoon and despite the unceasing rain, the city is as charming as everyone said it would be. Oddly enough, Cartagena's historic section reminds me of Jaipur...just a bit cleaner. 

Gorgeous old-world architecture fit snugly within the city walls, crumbling balconies overflowing with a riot of bougainvillas, street vendors hawking both auto parts and coffee cups from their carts, sidewalk stalls peddling strange but colorful candies. I love it all! 

And if you weren't convinced yet, my dinner last night of a massive corn and cheese arepa and mango sticks covered with salt and lime juice cost only $1! Yes, I could easily spend more time here. Once we get a little sunshine I'll take some photos....but in the meantime here's some I quickly swiped from some tourism sites.

Photos from: (Cartagena)

Inspire: Fortune Favors The Brave

We board a boat to Cartagena soon. I'm a little worried about cramped quarters, nonexistent showers and scurvy. But this print is helping me keep it together.

Print available through lilcoletterpress.

Video Love: I Look For My Heart It's Perdido....

The Sassy Sarah Vaughan says it best, I think.
How can you listen to this song and not imagine yourself in Havana or Panama?

2010 Holiday Gift Guide Round-Up

Nothing says Merry Christmas like a sweaty, dirty, homeless girl.
Yep, that's me.

I'm not complaining, but spending the holidays traveling in South America is proving a bit difficult in the holiday seasonal spirit department.

Since the internet connection is surprisingly reliable in our rented room in El Cangrejo, I've been crossing some good little girls and boys off my list. Shopping has been a - ahem - Caribbean breeze with these fantastically efficient gift guides! They're so prevalent on the web (and seem to pop up hourly) that it was hard to narrow down my favorites. Of course, none of them is devoted to global - inspired decor (I'll be working on that soon!). Anyhow, here's some goodies that might help you (and those on your gift list) get in the holiday mood...

Gifted Magazine - Creature Comforts Blog
This fantastic little online magalog is loaded with diy decorating ideas, holiday inspiration and loads of gift ideas, to boot. My husband was especially impressed with the "Gifts for Him" section.

2010 Gift Guide: $25 & Under - Design Sponge
Of course Design Sponge would post some of the most lovely, charming gift guides on the web. The $25 and under one is my favorite because, well, that's the state of my budget this year. I'm contemplating the vintage thumbprint candles and sweet (and cheap!) birch branch ring holder for some ladies in my life.

2010 Gift Guide - Cup-of-Jo Blog
Joanna Goddard's 2010 Gift Guide is still in the works but it looks like it will be fantastic (as always!). She has a few entries up already. I don't know what I like more-- her exquisite taste or charming entry titles. I suggest Gift Guide Part #2: Your Hilarious Younger Brother Who Rides a Yellow Motorcycle and Dressed as a Bedbug for Halloween.

Gift Guide: For The Home - Elements of Style Blog
Yet another gift guide from a blogger with polished taste. Loving the little glass trays made from vintage ephemera and gold-dipped carafe set.

56 Amazing Presents Under $50 for Everyone on Your List - Real Simple Magazine
Pretty impressive selection of gifts like artisanal whiskey and monogramed clutches made from vintage fabric. While you're there, check out the 33 Creative Stocking Stuffers section. (For the record: My mom always gets us gossip magazines and random kitchen goodies like pasta strainers and miniature spatulas. Great, right?? It's always my husband's favorite part of Christmas morning.)

2010 GeekDad Holiday Gift Guide - Wired Magazine
Secretly, all I really want for Christmas is what I've wanted since I was 13-- Legos and urban fantasy novels. So I had to include this fantastic list for the perpetual nerd in your life.

25 Under $100 Tech Gifts for Him - My Life Scoop Blog
Yep, this nails it for the ever-unimpressed college brother in my life. Leaning towards the Star Wars USB drives, cubic switchplate and Rubik's Cube clock.

The Gift Finder 2010 - New York Magazine
Wow. Exhaustive guide of unique, invariably hip gift ideas for everyone on your list from your crafty sister to your munchkin's teacher.  The Shop-A-Matic section features a pretty robust selection of goodies, too. You can even organize items by price. Yay budget!

The 2010 Holiday Gift Guide - Cool Mom Picks
100+ Holiday gifts for everyone on your list, in every price range, from cheap and chic to splurge-worthy. With suggestions such as "For The Cool 13-Year Old From Her Cool Aunt" and "For Your BFF From High School," you can't go wrong.

So now I'm just crossing my fingers that these sites can wrap, tag and send my presents to everyone at home!