TWIN FALLS, Idaho — For most people, this New Year's meant one thing: leaving all of 2020 behind. But for a lucky few, it meant welcoming a new member to the family.
Dennis Willis Hundelson and Katie Rose Wallis welcomed their new son and second child at 1:52 a.m. Friday. Remington Dean Hundelson weighed 6lbs, 9oz, and is 18.5 inches long.
"It was somewhat easy labor, and it was just a good experience, and everyone's healthy," said Wallis.
Wallis and Hundelson welcomed Remington just eleven months after their daughter Emily's birth. Hundelson says he's excited to have a boy and see his kids grow up together.
"It makes it nice that we're starting another year out with another child, and they're also close together, so in theory, it should be good for them to grow up together," said Hundelson.
Having had one child just before COVID and now another during the pandemic, the family noticed some significant differences in their experience.
"They were two very different experiences. We didn't have to wear a mask whenever we left our room like we did this time. There were just a little bit more restrictions," said Wallis.
One of the major differences for families expecting a new child this year has been that no other guests are allowed.
"They can have one person at delivery, but other than that, they can't bring in visitors to the hospital, and so that's kind of a frustration for the patients and everybody," explains Dr. Monte Crandall, an OBGYN for St. Luke's.
Like the families, the doctors and nurses are excited to welcome the New Year's babies. While spirits are already high during the holidays, staff have noticed some anxiety hanging around as COVID remains an issue with added safety precautions for patients and healthcare workers.
"We're wearing the proper gear, we have N95 masks, we each have a gown on, and goggles and gloves so you're pretty well protected," said Dr. Crandall.
Now that the hard part is over, Katie and Dennis are looking forward to going home, getting some shopping done for their new son, and showing others their latest addition to the family.