Monday, March 8, 2010

Battle of the Book Nooks + a Self-Portrait

     Supah's All About MEme Monday assignment is to post a self portrait created by yourself. Since I haven't turned the camera on myself for a couple of years, I sifted through all of my iPhoto files and found this one taken on Memorial Day 2007 after finishing my student teaching, pre-married life, pre-baby Foo, pre-heart failure, and pre-transplant. Plus, Shell's post inspired me to post a "look how nice and defined things used to be" photo. ;) By the way, no I wasn't naked! I had untied the strings of my navy and white stripped sundress and plopped down on the hotel bed. As a matter of fact, I wish you could see the dress: it was perfect resort wear. I will wear it again, I will wear it again, I will wear it again... (mantra-like) It was the cutest little sundress. We were at the Grand Hotel in Point Clear, about an hour's drive from where I live. 
Maybe this pic will better help you understand how irate I was this day (10/24).

*~*Next Topic*~* 
     As I promised a few days ago, here's how the trip to NOLA went: I got there relatively early for a change. I was so excited to chill-out, browse some blogs, order a movie, and pizza. By the way, the pizza is doctor's orders: I have a tendency not to drink enough fluids and that can make biopsies very difficult for me and the cardiologist, so by eating my more than average amount of sodium I retain water and thus making the vein in my neck easier to push the catheter through. Those of you that know about heart caths have typically heard of them going through the groin, but going through the neck is apparently much easier and you are up and out of there as soon as they are done. Anyway, back on topic, there is a hotel attached to the hospital that makes everything much easier. When I stepped up to the front desk and asked for a single room for one night, I got, "We do not have anything available for tonight." Oops. This place is NEVER booked, and I have NEVER had to have a reservation. Who wants to stay at a hotel adjoined to a hospital unless they are a patient or family? Well, apparently there was some sort of conference going on that day. I felt sort of lost there all by my lonesome. So, I dragged all my junk into the atrium and pulled out Baby Mac and hit up Expedia and Priceline for the closest hotels with the lowest rates and WiFi: yes, I had to have it. God bless technology. 

     I rang the Marriott Courtyard down the road and they had plenty of "room at the inn." I ventured back out into the torrential NOLA rains, and scooted on down the river highway to the Marriott. I timed it, only six minutes down the road! My room was very neat and quaint with a little balcony over-looking the pool. Too bad it was nearly a monsoon outside. I fell back on to the bed and...hello, memory foam. This night was going to be just fine. 

     I ordered a Papa John's Tuscan Cheese pizza and watched Law & Order then Couple's Retreat, and in case you were wondering the pizza was by far best of the three. Maybe it was because I had not so much as tasted a pizza in at least six months, but the movie wasn't so great either. I ♥ Vince, but this was a bomb. It was very tough to keep my eyes open. 

     The next morning I went on to lab as usual, picked up a scone, and strolled on over to the cath lab, were they took me right on back. Dr. Fisher was there to biopsy rather than my regular doc, Dr. Mandras. I was good to him again. He was the cardiologist on-call in the days surrounding my transplant, so it was great to see him again since that was the last time that I saw him. This was the first time I was attempting a heart cath/biopsy without taking any anti-anxiety or pain meds ahead of time. The needle and numbing of the neck wasn't was tough as usual, but apparently I have developed a lot of scar tissue in my chest that made the introduction of the catheter extremely painful. They continued to give me something, what it was I do not know. It did not help the pain, and when I sat up to leave, I was exhausted. I was even little wobbly walking back over to meet with Moriah for my clinic check-up. After chatting with her and checking all of my numbers, I moseyed on over to the MRI building, which I didn't realize was a little walk outside then to a mobile MRI trailer building. I guess they are remodeling or something because this is a nice hospital. Anyway, it was a regular MRI so my nose nearly touched the top of the thing, and I guess that they made some adjustments for momma hips. I fell right to sleep for however long it took.

     After I emerged from the pod-thing, I went straight to the coffee shop in the Atrium to get a White Gold (compare to a Starbucks White Chocolate Mocha). I called hubs and told him I fell a little "slow" and that I was just going to relax in the atrium for a little bit. He got all nervous and said that he didn't want me driving. I didn't exactly feel like it either so we agreed it would be best for me to stay another night. Luckily, my regular hotel now had rooms available, but not until 3:00 p.m. It was noon. 

     To kill the time until I could check in, I went to fill a prescription for an antibiotic that I had to have to treat a little splinter infection, and pick up a few snacks. On my way, I decided to stop by Border's Books. I had never been in one before. We have a couple of Books-A-Millions and a couple of Barnes & Nobles, but no Borders. I loved it. Of course, Barnes & Noble will always be my true love and I cannot stand Books-A-Million simply because it lacks that aesthetic that encourages reading. I walk into a Barnes & Noble and you just want to read. You walk in a Books-A-Million and I want de-clutter and start cleaning. I will go to Books-A-Million for little random funny gifts, i.e. magnets, pens, stationery, gift books, stickers, etc., and I will escape as quickly as I can. 
Borders is the happy medium. 
It has the delightful reading aesthetic, plus the large gift and knick-knack/impulsive shopper section. 

Did I mention the floor-to-ceiling bookshelves? I felt like Belle!

This is a former funeral home that they have recently turned into a Borders. I couldn't ever got an actual photo to post on here because the traffic wouldn't cooperate, but here is a Google photo. The colors and exterior are the same, but of course it has a Borders banner hanging across the porch and no chain-link fence. Isn't it great?! Apparently, Borders has been doing restorative projects across the country rather than building from the ground up. Cool, huh?

Now it's your turn to VOTE 
In my sidebar, directly under my profile, I have posted a poll. Let's see what true fan favorite is! You can select more than one because if you are like me, you have a favorite local, privately owned store and a favorite chain.
Ahh, the charming Page & Palette

     So, needless to say I had a peaceful night's rest; I slept in, made a few routine stops, did some wishful-window-shopping and headed home to my boys.


  1. Baby boy is adorable!
    I love the self portrait,your beautiful!

  2. Love your self portrait.

    Borders is my favorite, and we have a few around here. I love a good bookstore...

    I'm stopping in from SITS today, and I will be back.

    Have a great day.

  3. I feel you! I haven't taken a self portrait shot in forever! But you do look lovely & tan! It sounds like you've had a lot on your plate the last few years, but I must say your attitude is beyond admirable and inspiring!! And of course, you have the beautiful gift of baby boy :o)

  4. I am stopping by from SITS to say hello! Happy Wednesday!

    I totally agree about Books A Million! I hate it. It's so hard to find things there. Love me some B&N.

  5. Great self-portrait!

    Stopping by from SITS.

  6. Stopped by from SITS and a small town in Alabama! What a story! I love your spirit! I think it's great that Borders does restorations too! I will definitely check one out when I see it.

  7. I am now following your blog from a late Friday Follow. This is a neat and chic blog, I will be reading up more. You can also follow me at i'm sure you will like it too.

    Blessing @ Safe Home Happy Mom

  8. Sorry about all your followers going "Poof"! This is my first time here and I'm following now. What a bummer, huh?

    Great self portrait and love your baby boy's pic! I have two boys myself.

    Happy SITS Saturday Sharefest!

  9. Hi, I'm stopping by from SITS Sat. Sharefest. Wow, I feel like I'm peeking into your life right in the middle. I am glad your treatments seem to be going well, and there are some upsides (if that's possible)--getting to spend some alone time. Kudos to Borders, it's the bookstore I go to most frequently. They are from Ann Arbor, MI, home to U of M, so it makes sense they would want to be a little more eco friendly. All the best to you.

  10. Hi! Found you yesterday on YoTweeps! So glad I did. I can't wait to start reading your blog. I never knew this about Borders but WOW...that's some store! And a shout out to my favorite Disney movie of all time? LOVE IT.

  11. Hi Bethany! Thanks for stopping by to visit my blog and for becoming a follower. :)

    I voted-my favorite book store happens to be Barnes & Noble (in the U.S. anyway.) ;)

  12. I'm following you from Friday Follow!