Thursday, November 18, 2010

True Fact: Life Isn't Fair

Other than a couple big things (which I blogged about earlier), nothing huge has been going on here. Just little things, like my kids' allergies being the end of me. For the last few weeks, their allergies have been acting up like CRAZY (mostly Sam) and it has been a huge struggle every single night for us. In the last three weeks/month it's safe to say I have not slept solidly through the night. On average, Sam is waking up about 3 to 4 times a night, sometimes more (last night between the both of them it was 6 times in 7 hours). Not only is climbing in and out of bed on a continual basis painful for me, but it's extremely exhausting. Most days I feel like I'm in a dream state, where I don't know what's real and what's not, because as soon as I start to drift back to sleep and slip into a peaceful state, I am woken again by screaming or legs kicking the wall. Let's just say Sam doesn't handle the annoying itchy feeling in his nose very well, accompanied with constant running.

I have tried EVERYTHING, too. The only option left is to get an air purifier for their room, which we are doing this week. I have taken some awesome suggestions from friends/family, but so far, nothing works. Not even medicine like Benedryl or Claritan. I just wish Arizona would start cooling down already. It's so frustrating. Because I'm sure as soon as it does, and there are less allergens in the air, that will help. Winter come, PLEASE...for the sake of my sleep and sanity!!!

And you would think that after a while, you'd get used to the constant interrupted sleep, but you don't. Trust me. Your body never adjusts to being depleted. I know it sounds completely dramatic, but I really don't know how much longer it can go on like this...especially when I'm already run down and starving for sleep as a pregnant mom. And I realized in two months, when Lucas comes, I will be up all night with him (hoping not, but just going off of the way both Sam and Josh were as newborns...) and then what? What if Sam and Josh (again, mainly Sam) aren't better by then? Do I just say "screw sleep" in general and stay awake all night? Because that's how it will be. I just PRAY, harder than I did with Josh and Sam, that Luke will be a good newborn, a good eater, and a good sleeper. Because I have yet to know what that feels like.

But even if he IS like Josh and wants to eat 3 times throughout the night, even that isn't as bad as how much I'm waking up now. Balance, please!

Anyway, enough of my complaining...on that subject. I apologize to everyone who ever talks to me lately, because I know it's probably all I do. I try to be positive, I really do. Sometimes I just feel like the horrible way I feel physically (not just with exhaustion, but all the other pregnancy pains and contractions), puts a blanket over everything else and it's almost impossible to see anything through it sometimes.

But speaking of positive things! (Wait, were we?) Tomorrow we start our 15 hour trek to Colorado!!! Yay! I can't even express how thrilled I am. Even the uncomfortable car ride is worth it. It's been almost a year since we've been there as a family (and since we've seen the Meyers gang) and it's way overdue. I am so excited to see family and for Josh to bond with the family he hardly knows. Arizona is too far away and we are both (Dave and I) looking forward to this break. Now, I just pray me and the kids have good health. Usually (actually, every time) when we travel, at least one of us is sick...usually the kids. Dave had the horrible stomach flu yesterday and I am HOPING me and the boys are in the clear.

Now...back to the negative. Sorry. Have to talk about it. But I'll try to make it sound as upbeat as possible. Here we go. I am so thrilled that our NEW van was the victim of a hit-and-run last weekend! There's nothing like a good, solid roadblock to put things into perspective! When I walked out of Walmart and into the parking lot and saw the back of my van bashed in, I wanted to jump up and down with glee! Even better, they still haven't found the woman who did it, and most likely, we will be paying our $500 deductible to get it fixed...out of our pocket! I'm so glad we could do that for this woman who almost ran down the witnesses as she sped away and has made it impossible for the cops to find her! Merry Christmas, criminal woman, from our wallet your mistake!

Okay, I can't fake it anymore. It really does suck. Especially around the holidays. The damage doesn't actually look that bad, but the handle hardly works and the whole tailgate will end up having to be replaced. Which of course will definitely be more than the deductible. I talked to the police yesterday and he had a couple more addresses to follow up on, but come to find out, the woman is also a main suspect in some other criminal investigation. Go figure. So either she sped away to avoid that, she was drunk, or she doesn't have insurance. We are betting at this point that it's all three. It's not looking so good. Would someone like that really have insurance?

After talking to the insurance company, they informed us they will do everything to get what they can out of her, but we have to think realistically. This is life and as we all know, life isn't fair. So after a good, peaceful night, when I finally felt sane with the world, I make the mistake of going to Walmart to buy Dave's Christmas present (legally parked, mind you), and now we have the fortunate blessing of forking out $500 to pay for something we didn't do. On our new vehicle.

*Deep breaths* Okay, I'm done complaining. I promise. I really am aware of all the many amazing blessings in our life, because I know we have COUNTLESS to be grateful for, but sometimes you just gotta vent about the not-so-great things in life, too.

Ending on a positive note. During stake conference last Sunday (which I heard not a single word of, by the way), Sam told me my hair was "beautiful, like Cinderella." :) I didn't even know he knew who Cinderella was. Nothing like the sweet words of a child to brighten your mood.

When One Life Ends, Another Begins

It's taken me a while to blog about this, but I just wanted to make a small tribute to my beautiful, cute, lovable (and sometimes ornery) Grandma, Barbara Culling. She passed away on the morning of November 6, with my mom and dad by her bedside. She's been on the verge ever since October 2006 when she had her first stroke, and had been in a nursing home for the last 4 years. We'd all been praying for her to go peacefully and that her suffering would end, so her passing was bittersweet. We're all very grateful that she isn't bogged down by her physical body anymore and feel this has been a blessing after 4 long years, but we all miss her!

Her viewing and burial were on November 10 and I wished so badly I could be there and experience the sweet spirit that others in my family did. But my thoughts were there that whole day, and I'm just grateful she had the privilege to meet my first two children, Sam and Josh.

The way I will always remember her is the active Grandma who loved dogs, hated having pictures taken of herself, and used to walk everywhere. Some of my fondest memories of her were the few times I got to fly out to California and visit her alone as a kid, spending a week with her at a time and meeting all her other cute, ornery friends at her apartment complex. Walking her little terrier, Bingo, then walking to the Iron Skillet or the 99-cent store. I love my Grandma so much!

But there's been a little blessing in the Coltharp family--another addition! On the morning of Monday, November 15, my sister, Cindi, gave birth to her daughter, Abigail Catherine Lindsay! Both she and Abbey are doing great and now at home trying to adjust to the new life-style. I wish I could see her so bad, but from the pictures and videos, she looks just like a little, cute, female version of her big brother, Aaron! She's so cute and I'm so excited for my sister that she gets to be the mom of a newborn again!

Next it's my turn. Gulp.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Zombies and Reptiles

This is my favorite picture from this weekend. Love my little reptiles. This was last night, heading out for trick-or-treating.

Saturday night we had the Halloween carnival for Bagdad and other than the fact that our kids were a tidbit cranky from being sick, it was lots of fun for them. Well, for Sam I should say. I'm not too sure how Josh felt about it. He was pretty enamored with all the costumes and people and just aimlessly wandered most of the time, in his own world. But I love that Sam is at the age where he can really start enjoying the games and things. He wanted to play every one of them and by the end was so tuckered out that he was begging to go home. And I was okay with that because I was already exhausted and hurting from the long day we had in Prescott. But anyway, it was awesome and I really appreciate Becky and all she did to throw it together, and everyone else who pitched in!

My kids slept in the next morning (Sunday/Halloween)...both of them. Which is seriously a miracle. Every once in a while, Josh sleeps in if Sam doesn't wake him up at 6am, but NEVER do they both sleep in...and until 8:45, mind you. MIRACLE. We never set our alarms for church on Sunday morning because we never have to...because our kids are usually up at the crack of dawn (or recently, before dawn). So when we heard Sam's first peep that morning and I turned to the alarm clock and saw the numbers "8:41," I sat straight up, in shock.

So even though we wouldn't have nearly enough time to get us and the kids ready for church (9am), I have to admit it was nice to sleep in. REALLY nice. They were still coughing and had runny noses from being sick so I was leery about taking them to nursery anyway, and I felt like absolute garbage, so at that point we just decided to keep us home. Anyway, that day we watched the NBC comedy shows from last Thursday night on our DVR (Community, the Office, and Outsourced), which were the Halloween episodes, and Sam was SO into Community. It was about all the students at a Halloween party getting some virus and turning into "zombies." Needless to say, it was one of the best Community episodes ever.

But Sam was on the edge of his seat the whole time, yelling things like "Run!" and "Oh no!" and "Mom, did the zombies get them?? Are they zombies now??" When it was over he wearily said, "Mom, I don't like zombies at all." And ever since then he's leery of zombies everywhere.

...And of course one of the first houses we trick-or-treated at last night had some guy dressed like a zombie, popping out at kids on the porch. He had to pull off his mask at one point and assure Sam that he was just a normal guy, because Sam almost started crying. It was actually pretty hilarious. But after that, every single house we came to, I heard, "Are there zombies at this house?"

Other than the fear of zombies, trick-or-treating was a huge success and my kids (and myself) had so much fun. It was the first year Sam was REALLY into it, so I fed off of his enthusiasm. I love being a parent and living through my kids. :)

Anyway, it took Josh a while to catch on to the idea of it, but he eventually did and just loved filling his pumpkin pale with candy. At one house, there was a bowl on the porch with a sign that said, "Take two," and of course Josh freaked out when I pulled him away after two pieces because he wanted to empty the whole bowl into his bucket. But as soon as he realized we were getting candy at the next house, he was fine.

The trick-or-treaters started knocking on our door a little before 6 and after that, it was a constant stream until about 7:30. I was actually surprised. Out of everywhere we've lived, we've never had so many trick-or-treaters. And I think that that's because in most places, people just don't take their kids anymore, whether it's because of other parties or that things just aren't as safe anymore. So I absolutely love that Bagdad is still into it, because it reminded me of when I was a kid!

Anyway, the door wouldn't stop knocking and we decided we wanted to be here to hand out candy, so Dave and I split up. He stayed home and I took the kids by myself. I wanted him there so bad and with the way I was feeling, going alone with them was the last thing I wanted. But I also really wanted to see them trick-or-treat, more than Dave did. So my plan was just to go up one street and back, but when I got out there and got wrapped up in the "spirit" of it, I couldn't stop. There were some cool houses and I just had to take them up the hill, down this street, over this way and we ended up hitting the whole block by our house.

Josh was soooo incredibly slow, and so wrapped up in the crowds of kids in their costumes, that I was literally pulling him along the whole time. Either that or carrying him. Let's just say that wasn't fun for me to do going up the hills. Talk about constant contractions. It was worth it though. Anyway, it was a lot of fun. And by the time we got back to the house (about 7pm), Dave had a show on pause and said he had to have it on constant pause for the last hour because the door wouldn't stop knocking. Our huge bag of candy from Sam's Club didn't last very long, even with us being stingy and only giving one piece.

My kiddos were so cute, too. Josh's dragon costume (formerly Sam's) got so much attention, as usual. It's so adorable. Old Navy sure hit the mark with it.

Well, that's it for now! Here are some pics of the weekend.

My dinosaur fishing with his daddy at the carnival...

Enjoying his prize.

My cute little dragon. And I don't know why this picture turns sideways when I upload it! It did the same thing on Facebook...even though I have it saved on my computer right-side-up.

I tried all night to get a good picture of them together, but Josh was being far from cooperative.

Sam's cool flame that Mandy Schultz painted.

Waiting for their popcorn...

And this was after trick-or-treating last night, winding down with some candy in front of the TV. My two little blond heads.