We wanted to be unique, in sending out our family letter in January, so we devised all sorts of ways through the holiday season, to procrastinate writing it. Quite sanely, we made the decision to drive up to Idaho to spend Thanksgiving with family, and unexpectedly got snowed in. We cleverly decided to go house-hunting in the late fall, so that we could close on our new house the week before Christmas. That same week, we managed to squeeze in having Kimble admitted to the hospital for an infection in his lymph nodes. To top it all off, we moved into our new home and celebrated Christmas in a sea of boxes. Now that we are settled in our new house, and the kids have transitioned into a new school, we have run out of excuses. May we present…The Nunnelly Family: A Year In Review.
Things weren’t just busy at the end of the year. It seems that we got quite a healthy dose of
January: Having just gotten home from being in the hospital and undergoing heart surgeries with our new baby Kimble, we spent January recovering, and never going more than a few days between doctor’s appointments. We relished the time we had at home (vs living in the hospital) and I spent plenty of happy hours cooking, creating, blogging, and enjoying the craziness that five kids bring.
February: Not a lot changed in February, except that we continued to see Mr. Kimble growing fat and happy. The kids all chose Kimble, to be their Valentine.
March: In March, we managed to play outside in shorts and T-shirts one day, and the next day, went sledding in two feet of snow. That is the joy of living in Colorado. The kids went roller-skating, and loved it. We continue to see Kimble’s doctors every two weeks, and finally got a plan for the next few months: cleft lip surgery in May and heart surgery in June.
April: The next two months were filled with preparation for the surgeries, by undergoing ultrasounds, X-rays, Ct scans, bloodwork, and Cath-Lab procedures. We took lots of neighborhood walks, as a family, and made lots of “comfort food” like chocolate chip cookies and macaroni and cheese. We also kicked off our Blanket Drive for The Denver Children’s Hospital, in hopes of giving back, even a fraction, for all the service that was done for us, while in the hospital.
May: On Kimble’s six month birthday, we celebrated by undergoing surgery to fix his cleft lip. It was a hard recovery process, but well worth it. His lip looks fabulous, and you can barely see the scar. We enjoyed the Colorado sunshine as much as we could, by playing at local parks. We also enjoyed reunions with Kimble’s heart baby friends and their families, who were in the hospital back in November, with Kimble. These two other families were also part of orchestrating The Blanket Drive.
June: The kids got out of school for the summer, and enjoyed a few weeks of playing. Kimble and I flew up to Washington, to see my baby brother (Ian) get married, and my baby sister (Nancy) graduate from high school. It was a great weekend reunion. We took the Family Picture that accompanies this letter. After that, Heath drove the kids to Utah, so they could be watched by my wonderful brother and sister for two weeks. During that time, Kimble had his third heart surgery, which re-routed blood flow, to better accommodate his faulty heart. Within a week, he was discharged and recovering amazingly well. Heath went back to Utah to pick up the kids, and this takes us into July. (You know you want to keep reading!)
July: The surgery made all the difference, with Kimble, and he immediately began making huge milestones, developmentally. Heath also acquired the long-sought after GS position (government civilian job) with the Department of the Army. Although it came with an initial pay-decrease, the job stability, in this economy, greatly out way any other factors. We enjoyed Colorado more, while exploring it by car and foot, and played host to many friends who traveled through.
August: August brought more friends traveling through, and we discovered that we really love people visiting us (hint). The kids started school again, and things quieted down a bit, with just Kimble and Georgie home during the day. I spent a lot of time canning salsa and quite literally falling in love with a cream cheese potato and ham soup, and sticky coconut chicken with coconut rice, that I now make on a weekly basis (but not at the same time).
September: We started house hunting with kids in tow (not a brilliant move on our part, but somewhat necessary) and continued to gather and make blankets for The Blanket Drive. I celebrated my one-thousandth blog post (http://just-because-i-am-me.blogspot.com) and finally conquered The Manitou Incline, which is a one-mile hike straight up the side of a mountain, consisting of old railway ties.
October: Much to Kolby’s delight, October was filled with lots of candy and yummy treats. Kolby and Keaton were both Spiderman for Halloween, one being Venom, and the other “the good Spiderman”. Kamy was Cleopatra, Georgie was Tinkerbell, and Kimble became our little courageous lion. We finally found the house we would buy, and put in our offer. I also spent the month making Christmas presents, in preparation for our (mostly) homemade Christmas.
November: Kimble became overly ambitious and uncoordinated at the same time. As a result, he got multiple black eyes this month, the first one occurring on his first birthday. That same day, in celebration of such a momentous and heartfelt year, we completed our Blanket Drive, and donated over one-thousand blankets to The Denver Children’s Hospital. It was an overwhelming day, with lots of publicity, but we felt such accomplishment! As previously mentioned, we spent Thanksgiving with much of my side of the family, in Idaho, which was fabulous, even though we were “trapped” due to the weather.
December: In perfect harmony with our crazy year, we experienced drama relating to house issues, dealt with an unexpected hospitalization for Kimble, said goodbye to our dear friends ( which was so difficult, but made easier by the fact that we were only moving 30 minutes away this time), and moved into our first mortgaged home just in time for Christmas.
In all honesty, it has been one of the best years of our life. Although we endured multiple surgeries connected with unbelievable highs and lows, we grew as a family this year. We have an unshakable testimony of the power of faith, love, and prayers, and we appreciate everyone (family and friends) with much more intensity. We are so thankful that we could have such a fantastic year, overflowing with blessings. We hope this letter finds you happy and healthy.
Wishing you all the best in the year to come. With much love, The Nunnelly Family
Heath, Shaina, Kamyren (10), Keaton (9), Kolby (7), Kennedy (“Georgie” 5), and Kimble (1).