Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Pull a chair up to the fire -- the Irish Fireside that is

Pull a seat up to the fire -- click on over to the Irish Fireside for a chance at winning A Journey into Ireland's Literary Revival. While you are there, check out his list of great Irish gifts and other wonderful things. It's a great site.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Passports with a Purpose is a success!

This just in from Passports with a Purpose about their fundraising efforts this December. I am contributing a copy of all three of my books and have sent my money into Heifer International in hopes of one of the great prizes below. Read on for more details:

Passports With Purpose: Get Ready to Win!

I'm excited to announce that we have raised over $3300 for Heifer International through Passports With Purpose! We're not done yet, though, and if you have not yet made a donation, this is your last full week to do so before you head off for the holidays. I'm posting the full list of prizes and instructions below. Odds off winning are still very good, and there are even a few prizes that don't yet have any entries. I thought I'd share that list so that you can rush over to FirstGiving and make your donation (just leave the code number for the prize you want in the comments). For more details, click on the link with each of the prizes below.C03 Merino Wool Long Underwear from Jones Wear ($120) from Nerds Eye ViewC06 Clothing items (one outfit) by Earth Creations from Travel With PurposeC07 His and Her Shirts by ExOfficio from Wanderlust and LipstickK05 $100 Gift Certificate with Babies Travel Lite (sponsored by Babies Travel Lite), signed copy of Travels With Baby($122) from Travels With BabyE04 Tour Pack from Mountainsmith ($70) from GoGreenTravelB03 Five Books from Lonely Planet ($94) from Ever The NomadB04 A selection of books from Lia HadleB07 2 items: Travel with Kids: The Definitive Guide to Family Holidays Worldwide AND A Magnetic Travel Art Kit for Children ($40) from LizAndTobiB08 Where to Go When: The Americas, DK Brazil, DK Peru, DK Argentina ($120) from WandermomB09 Signed copy of Sacred Places of a Lifetime ($40 plus signature value from National GeographicB12 Travel Guide Bonanza from Wandering EducatorsB14 A Set of CDs ($102) from The Blend Magazine
Here is the full list of prizes. Remember that each donation makes a huge difference in the life of a family struggling to keep food on the table.
Prize ID
3 Nights at the Wyland Waikiki in Hawaii ($400+)
Harlem Food and Cultural Tour ($190)
Seattle TourSaver and Alaska TourSaver ($180)
$100 Gift Card for any hotel in the Mr. and Mrs. Smith Hotel Collection ($100)
Mr & Mrs Smith Luxury Hotels
Two night stay for a family of four at The Wildflower Inn in Lyndonville, VT ($400)
$100 gift certificate towards any Ciao Bambino property ($100)
Ciao Bambino
2 night stay at B&B in CA($495)
Cooking class and dinner for 4 in NYC ($600)
Collazo Projects
Culinary Tour of Greenwich Village led by Addie Tomei ($240)
Things You Should Do
PhotoWalks walking tour of Boston for 4 ($120)
Things You Should Do
Horseback riding on the beach in Bradenton, FL ($120)
Things You Should Do
Fairmont Hotel Package, One night in a suite, parking, dinner ($299)
Fairmont Hotel
Flip Video Camera ($150)
$150 Gift Card to B&H Photo (valid online and in store) ($150)
Eye-Fi Wireless Camera Memory Card ($130)
$200 shopping spree with ExOfficio & $100 lunch ($300)
1 set of ExOfficio his/her shirts ($148)
Around the Bloc
Merino Wool Long Underwear from Jones Wear ($120)
Nerd's Eye View
Mountain Hardwear Women's Mynx Jacket (medium, dark adobe), Eagle Creek Messenger Bag ($265)
Merino Wool Long Underwear from Ibex ($120)
Nerd's Eye View
Clothing items (one outfit) from Earth Creations
Travel With Purpose
His and Her Shirts from ExOfficio ($170)
Wanderlust and Lipstick
Casio Wave Ceptr WR10 Bar World Time Watch ($100)
Solio Charger - portable solar charger ($170)
Trusty Pony
WordPress Premium Theme ($90)
Coming Soon from TravelRants!
Medela Swing Single Electric Breastpump ($149)
Maclaren Techno XLR ($350)
Britax Boulevard Car Seat ($330)
CARES Flight Safety Harness (sponsored by Kids Fly Safe), signed copy of Travels With Baby ($97)
$100 Gift Certificate with Babies Travel Lite (sponsored by Babies Travel Lite), signed copy of Travels With Baby($122)
Sit-n-Stroll convertible car seat and stroller (sponsored by Lilly Gold), signed copy of Travels With Baby ($272)
Ergo Hands Free Baby Carrier and iPod Shuffle ($213)
Peg Perego Primo Viaggio Infant Car Seat ($290)
Cookie Magazine and Going Places blog
Gift Bags and Baskets
Grab Bag of fun travel-related gifts including the Funkey Finder, hair products from Tassi, a Carson Lens Pen, luggage tags from and an Eastport Natural Collection Duffle Bag. ($155)
Grab bag of travel-related gifts from the Moms who participate in GNO
Coming Soon from GNO!
2 Indonesian sarongs, 2 matching Indonesian pillowcases, 1 Indonesian pillow cover, 1 Chinese bottle cover ($120)
Gift bag of travel goodies
Matador Travel
Gift basket from SkinStore ($200)
Just Go!
Makeup and Beauty Package from Erwin Gomez Salon and Spa ($300)
Things You Should Do
Original Oil Pastel Painting by Lola Akinmade ($250)
Geotraveler's Niche
TravelMuse Travel Journal, "Inspire Me" T-shirt and $100 Shutterfly gift certificate ($135)
$100 gift card from American Express ($100)
Eagle Creek ORV Duffel and Eagle Creek Messenger bags ($210)
REI Vagabond Travel Pack and PackTowl UltraLite Towel (XL) from Viking River Cruises ($130)
Carry-on luggage from
Go Galavanting
Tour Pack from Mountainsmith ($70)
Go Green Travel Green
2009 Tampa Buccaneers home game tickets! ($170)
What Boundaries!
Books and Music
Spain: A Culinary Road Trip by Mario Batali w/Gwyneth Paltrow
1,000 Places to See Before You Die-by Patricia Schultz
Immersion Travel USA-by Sheryl Kayne, Diners
Drive-Ins and Dives-by Guy Fieri
Frommer's 500 Places to See Before They Disappear-by Holly Hughes($100)
Gift pack of Barefoot Books ($100+)
5 books from Lonely Planet
The Travel Book
Best in Travel 2009
The Big Trip
Lonely Planet 2009 Wall Calendar
Travel Journal($94)
Lonely Planet Travel Book
5 Time Out city guides of the winner's choice
2 Alastair Sawdays Guides
1 Pocket Comm Communications tool
2 Paperblanks 2009 diaries
5 sets of Moo postcards by collage artist Lia Hadle
Lia Hadley
$100 Gift Certificate for ($100)
2 books: Travel with Kids: The Definitive Guide to Family Holidays Worldwide AND A Magnetic Travel Art Kit for Children ($40)
Where to Go When: The Americas, DK Brazil, DK Peru, DK Argentina ($120)
Signed copy of Sacred Places of a Lifetime ($40 plus signature value :-)
National Geo Intelligent Travel Blog
Lonely Planet Guide of YOUR choice and copies of The Travel Book ($100)
A Journey into the Transcendentalists' New England A Journey into Ireland's Literary Revival Walking Boston. ($45)
Travel guide bonanza:
Lonely Planet's Syria & Lebanon
Frommer's 500 Places to See Before They Disappear
Frommer's NYC Free & Dirt Cheap
Frommer's Cancun and the Yucatan
A Mindful Christmas($100+)
$100 worth of Creative Memories Scrapbooking Supplies ($100)
Set of 3 CDs from award winning Native American flutist, Evren Ozan
1 CD from cowboy poet, Mike Moutoux
1 CD from Americana musicians Steve Smith & Hard Road
1 CD from Nashville singer/songwriter Jon Roniger
1 CD from from Phoenix-based Michael & Spider($102)
The Blend Magazine
Putumayo World Music CD's
Women of Africa
Asian Groove
Samba Bossa Nova
Turkish Groove
World Hits($75)
Wanderlust and Lipstick
Signed copies of Getting Lost and Globejotting: How to Write Extraordinary Travel Journals AND a one-hour writing consultation with Dave Fox ($100)
Dave Fox

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

The Irish Gift of Gabbing about Irish Gifts

This is pretty cool. My book, A Journey into Ireland's Literary Revival, was listed as a top Irish themed gift for 2008 at the Irish Fireside website. These guys handpick stuff from quality craftspeople and artists, so I was thrilled to be included.

Take a look here at the link: and scroll down until you find me.

Monday, December 08, 2008

live author chat on LibraryThing

Friends -

I am answering questions live over on LibraryThing. Stop on by and add to the conversation.



Monday, December 01, 2008

Passports with a Purpose

No matter how light we pack, we almost always carry our privilege with us. Our simple presence in a foreign land is a clear sign that we have the means to get there, and, as often is the case, when we carry camera equipment and backpacks worth hundreds of American dollars, that message is doubled. I struggle with this often -- how do I respectfully witness and document conditions so very different than mine in a way that empowers those I see, or at the very, very least does not take away from their sense of personal grace and humanity? What is my role as writer and photographer, as fellow human?

While I have no ready answers to these questions and welcome all perspectives, I do know of a few actions I can take. One is to read: read the perspectives of those who live different lives than me, read the accounts and thoughts of other travelers, read the theories of those who spend their lives thinking about these issues. Another is to write. A third option is to help provide the funds to help people overcome the challenges set in front of them.

Today, I grabbing that third option and linking up with Passports with a Purpose, a fundraiser run by four travel bloggers in Seattle. They have set up a December raffle for a series of great prizes offered by a variety of travel bloggers. They are raising funds for Heifer International.

For my part, I be contributing to Heifer International using the First Giving page set up by Passports with a Purpose. And, I am offering a bundled three-pack of my books to a lucky raffle winner. So, go to the First Giving page, make a donation and sign up to win a copy of each of these three books:

A Journey into Ireland's Literary Revival

From the 1890s until the 1920s, a great tide of literary invention swept Ireland. As the country struggled for political independence, the writers who formed the Irish Literary Revival created a new, authentically Irish literature. Some, such as W. B. Yeats, John Synge, and Lady Gregory, celebrated the mystical tradition of Ireland’s west; others, such as Sean O’Casey, explored Dublin’s crowded streets and tenements. This fascinating, revealing, and beautiful book examines the relationship between these writers and the towns and countryside that fueled their imaginations. Party history, part biography, and part travel guide, A Journey into Ireland’s Literary Revival takes the reader to Galway, the Aran Islands, Mayo, Sligo, Wicklow, and Dublin. Along the route, it visits the cottages and castles, crags and glens, theaters and pubs where some of the country’s finest writers shaped an enduring vision of Ireland.

A Journey into the Transcendentalists' New England
This lavishly illustrated volume examines the major figures of the Transcendentalist movement and explores the places that inspired them. Beginning with Transcendentalism’s birth in Boston and Cambridge, the book charts the development of a movement that revolutionized American ideas about the artistic, spiritual, and natural worlds. At the same time, it creates a vivid sense of New England in the nineteenth century, from its idyllic countryside and sleepy towns to its bustling ports and burgeoning cities. The book is divided geographically into chapters, each focusing on a town or village famous for its relationship to one or more of the Transcendentalists. Thus, for instance, one chapter spotlights Cambridge, where Ralph Waldo Emerson delivered his path-breaking lectures, while another explores Walden, when Henry David Thoreau spent two years attuning himself to the rhythms of nature. Other chapters retrace the paths of writers and poets such as Nathaniel Hawthorne, Emily Dickinson, and Margaret Fuller through Salem, Amherst, Boston, and Concord and the utopian communities of Brook Farm and the Fruitlands.

Walking Boston

Boston has a revolutionary history that has established the city as New England’s cultural and historic capital. Here you can experience American history and fresh pasta in the North End, visit the shiny new waterfront and 50-acre greenway post-Big Dig, or wander the cobblestone streets to Henry David Thoreau’s house in Beacon Hill—and it’s all conveniently within walking distance. This portable guide features detailed maps for each trip, original photos, and public transportation information for every trip. Route summaries make each walk easy to follow, and a “Points of Interest” section summarizes each walk’s highlights. The 36 walks include trivia about architecture, local culture, and the city’s rich history, plus tips on where to dine, have a drink, and shop.