2018 Recap: Merry Christmas!

2018_05 Family at Airport

It is a World record, I’ve gotten this letter completed BEFORE Christmas!!  I have no idea what is happening. Who am I? Perhaps all of the changes in 2018 have left me in a good headspace (more on that later).  2018 had a milestone birthday & anniversary and a few highs/lows with a lot of traveling in-between…

We committed to another year of “Operation Reconnect” to make sure hubby and I planned adult dates with each other at least once a month.  We also continued the Family dates of doing something out of the normal routine for the children at least once a month.

Charlie continued to settle into his new job at Facebook this year and seems to be loving every challenging minute of it. He also continued to compete in mountain biking races with his friends in April, June, and September (in Angelfire, Ruidoso, & Tijeras, NM).  He also enjoyed taking Gentry Elk hunting again in September. As part of my milestone birthday year, we had planned a 2 week trip to Greece/Croatia with two of my girlfriends but Charlie had a sudden health issue that stranded us in Los Angeles after the first flight of the trip.  If you didn’t follow the saga on my Facebook, it ended up being 6 days in Cedars Sinai hospital. Luckily Charlie ended up being okay and there was plenty of silver lining after all was said and done. We ended up with a few days of R&R on the beach and some fun deep sea fishing.

The children finished their first year at their new school in May.  Gentry continued to enjoy baseball, soccer, and moved up to Webelos level in Boy Scouts.  Haven continued to enjoy Girl Scouts, soccer, and guitar. The children spent another summer at the Think Academy where Gentry really enjoyed Digital Arts, Creative Writing, Science, Tennis, & Karate.  Haven really enjoyed Tennis, Dance for Musical Theater, and Piano. The children flew to Texas by themselves (which was both exciting and scary) to spend a week with Charlies brother and his family and with my sister.  Speaking of Charlies brother, he married his longtime girlfriend, Misty, and we were able to spend Thanksgiving week with them (and with my twin sister in Austin) and attend their wedding reception celebration #ItsAboutTime!  Speaking of weddings, Charlie and I celebrated our 10 year wedding anniversary this year. Time flies… when you’re busy raising children!

Speaking of busy, we were blessed to have quite a few little fun trips this year.  The first was my milestone birthday girls trip to Las Vegas in April with my twin and friends!! We all had such a blast pretending we were still young and hip in Sin city.  I also went to Memphis, TN with the Junior League ladies for a learning conference and I absolutely loved the MLK/Civil Rights museum there and the blues/BBQ joints. In July the children and I flew up to Portland, Oregon to celebrate my new chapter and to meet up with Charlie who was in Bend, OR on business.  We checked out the Haystack rock in Cannon Beach (from The Goonies movie), toured Tillamook cheese factory, got lost in Big Foot country, and hiked/played on the Deschutes River in Bend. At the end of August, we all flew to New York city because my Moms side was hosting a family reunion. We really had a great time meeting so many cousins/aunts/uncles that I’d never met and learning about them.  We spent 57 hours in NYC seeing everything from Times Square, USS Intrepid, Battery Park, Staten Island Ferry, Statue of Liberty, etc. The children loved riding the subway, the train, the ferry, and exploring Central Park/Grand Central Station.

Lastly, I made some changes this year.  After a little over 3 years (4 if you count my internship year) of working for Child Protective Services, I quit my job at CYFD in late July.  I just needed a break before my tank was completely empty. At the end of August, I started as a part-time school social worker with Albuquerque Public Schools.  I really like it so far. Perhaps the most exciting thing is my latest “side hustle”… my Private Practice. I rented office space in Edgewood, NM in August and started with my first client in September.  I also share an Albuquerque office location. It has literally been a dream come true to be able to do what I do best: listen & nurture insight in others. Appropriately so, the name of my psychotherapy practice is Nurturing Insight LLC (“like it” on Facebook, ha! or https://www.NurturingInsight.com ).  Despite MONTHS of tedious paperwork, I am almost credentialed with all the major health insurance companies (& Medicare/Medicaid), just waiting on BCBS. I still enjoy volunteering with the Junior League of Albuquerque and serving another year on the Board of the Future Fund (part of the Albuquerque Community Foundation).  

We hope this letter finds you and your family doing well. We wish you lots of love and joy in 2019.


The Tomlins
(Charlie, Kellie, Gentry, & Haven)

2018 Operation Reconnect

Buddy Guy Jonny Lang Concert 2018

Buddy Guy Jonny Lang Concert 2018

As a New Years resolution in 2018, Charlie and I again vowed to re-ignite the spark of one-on-one time at least once a month in the form of unique date nights.  Like in 2012, 2014, 20152016, and 2017 the rules were to alternate who planned/executed each date night every month and to not repeat previous date nights within the 12 months.  As usual, our hopes were high to be able to get more creative with each date but due to some schedule constraints (traveling) we relied on some old tried and true date nights.  Here is what we ended up with by the end of 2018:

January  – Tablao Flamenco at Hotel Albuquerque
February – Brain Gang Trivia at the Canteen Brewhouse
March – BANFF Film Festival at the Lensic Performing Arts Center in Santa Fe, NM
March – 10 year wedding anniversary weekend at the Hyatt Tamaya Resort
April – Bien Shur for Birthday at Sandia Casino
May – Game of Thrones watching in Cedars Sinai hospital in Marina Del Rey, CA
June – Venice Beach, Malibu, Santa Monica Pier in Los Angeles, California
July – FAIL
August – Buddy Guy/Jonny Lang Concert at Sandia Amphitheater
September – FAIL
October – Albuquerque Community Foundation dinner at Old Town Farm
November – Junior League “Nuclear Night Out” 1950’s Gala
December –  Facebook Christmas Party with Dueling Pianos at Sandia Casino

International Balloon Fiesta 2018

International Balloon Fiesta 2018

In addition to planning our unique couples time each month, we also wanted to make sure the children had unique and fun experiences each month too.  This is what we planned or rather, what fell into our lap:

January – Pinewood Derby in Cedar Crest
February – Shovel races & skiing in Angelfire, NM
March – Talent Show at Moriarty Civic center
April – FAIL
May – Texas vacation with Matt & Misty, and Yvonne
June – NE Heights Summerfest, Camping with Boyscouts
July – Fishing at Bluewater Lake
August – Facebook family day at Cliffs amusement park
September – Rain Gutter Regatta, 12 Hours of Albuquerque mountain bike race
October – Greek Festival and Balloon Fiesta
November – Texas vacation at Lake Travis and Ammansville, TX
December – Madrid Christmas Parade and Polar Express on Durango Railroad

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