A good night’s sleep

It has been a couple of days so I feel that I owe you a quick update and some more photos (OK it’s just the photos that you are here for isn’t it?).  The last time you heard from me was Saturday night so what has happened over the last couple of days?

It is not very often that one of the most exciting things that happens to this family is sleep but that is exactly what happened on Saturday night.  Ezra is less than a week old so we are fully prepared for sleep depravation however Ezra threw us a curved ball by sleeping for just over 5 hours on his fourth night in the big wide world.  Yes, unlike his sisters Ezra simply eats and sleeps (and poops) at the moment.  He seems very contented and only cries when it is food time.  Now maybe this is due to the fact that we are more confident parents and he senses this; maybe it is because he is a boy or maybe it is just him.

So was this just a one-off? Perhaps a little too early to tell yet and although he didn’t last quite as long last night again he woke when he was hungry, fed, then went back to sleep.  We can not ask for any more from him.

So Sunday morning we awoke feeling more human and somewhat surprised and ready to receive visitors.  If Saturday was the turn of the Bagnall side then Sunday it was the ‘Badger’ side’s turn to meet the newest member of the family.  Lucinda’s brother Steve and his family popped round early afternoon.  This meant that Ezra had met (and had a cuddle from) all of his first cousins.  This included Finley his only male cousin and the original owner of some of his clothes.

Then Lucinda’s mum’s sisters, Aunties Sally and Diana came round with Adam and Lucy and John.  Again Ezra was very well behaved although his sisters were a little over-excited.  It must be very difficult for them because they are no longer the centre of attention when people come round.  We are trying to involve them in everything but obviously Ezra is the draw and they know that.

Both Éowyn and Amélie have been brilliant with him though.  They both fight over wanting to hold him and sit with a cushion on their lap and have quickly learnt to support his head.  Amélie especially will sit for an extended period holding her little brother, stroking his head and kissing him.  She is very cute, if at times a little heavy handed but that is to be expected and we obviously supervise them when they have him.

We have spent a very quiet Monday at home getting used to being a family.  The rain, hail and thunderstorms were a deterrent for even making it up the road to Nanny and Granddad’s.  Our family enclave was only invaded once by the 5 day check up by the local midwives.  They examined Ezra and took blood via the blood spot (heel prick) test.  This upset Éowyn thinking that these strange people who had come into our house were hurting her little brother.  Fortunately although it looked painful he was feeding and must have had his mind on better things because he didn’t even flinch.

They checked Lucinda and made sure that all was well with her and then finally weighed Ezra.  He weighed in at a surprising 3.92kgs (8lbs 10oz); he had only lost 92 grams.  This is excellent, it means that he is feeding well and we will be more content to let him sleep rather than fretting that he has slept for 5 hours!  A new born baby can lose up to 10% of their birth weight before the medical profession get too worried.  At this rate Ezra will probably surpass his birth weight on my birthday and definitely by his next weigh-in on Saturday.

So as I sit here with Ezra sleeping on my chest I will leave you to enjoy the latest crop of photos.

Love and Peace


On record!

Today marks the end of Amélie’s first week out of the womb.  (I was going to say on Planet Earth but she has been here for a whole 9 months; it is only the last week that she has been a separate entity.)  This is also the day that she officially became part of the population of the United Kingdom for today we registered her birth at the local registry office.  Today was also the first day that our family of four all travelled in the same car together.  So it has been a momentous day in triplicate.  But before any of that let me get you slightly up to speed with the midwife’s visit.

As I mentioned yesterday the midwife was due to come round to discharge us from midwifery care into the arms of the health visitors.  The midwife weighed Amélie (she was 3.740kg (8lb 4oz), therefore she has only lost 44 grams or just over an ounce) and was pleased that she has not lost that much weight.  Some weight loss is usual and babies can lose half a pound in the first few days after birth and should be back to their birth weight by their 2nd week.  Therefore Amélie is right on track and will probably be back to birth weight tomorrow!  That’s my girl!  The midwife also performed the Guthrie Test (Heel Prick Test).  This is to test for a variety of genetic conditions and one of those things that if all is well you will never hear about it.  They only contact you if it is bad news, or they need to run more tests.  Let’s hope we don’t hear back.  The midwife also gave Lucinda a check up and so both my girls passed with flying colours.

Last night Amélie had probably her best night (or should that be, we had our best night).  She took a little bit of settling after her middle of the night feed (0330) which Lucinda admirably dealt with, while I snoozed (O.K. snored).  Then at 0700 both girls woke.  I took Éowyn downstairs and Lucinda fed Amélie.  Then Lucinda and Amélie snoozed until after 1000 this morning.  So we both feel a little more human today.  Amélie has been snoozing all day today (catching up on all that sleep she hasn’t had over the last few days) but this doesn’t fill us with any expectation of what the night holds.  Only time will tell.

As I mentioned in the opening paragraph, today we registered the birth of Amélie Iris.  By law this needs to be done within the first 6 weeks of a birth and it is one of those things that you may as well just make the appointment and get it out of the way.  Also once you have a birth certificate you can claim Child Benefit (if you are reading this is in the latter part of the 2010’s you may wonder what this strange phrase means.  Child benefit (actually Family Allowance) was introduced by a coalition government in the post war year of 1945 (although the first claimant books were not issued until 1946).  It was a universal payment given to mothers to help ease the burden on families during the dark economic times of housing shortages and food rationing.  Initially it was only given on the birth of your second child (and subsequent children) to encourage multiple births to repopulate the country.  In 1977 it was extended to include the first child.   In 2013 that is due to change.  Here endeth the history lesson), open a bank account and obtain a UK passport.  This will happen in due course.

So with my car’s odometer reading exactly 40,000 miles our first family of four car trip began.  However, it was only to Lucinda’s parents (at the end of the road) where we dropped Éowyn off so that we could concentrate on filling out the paperwork, especially if Amélie began to cry.  Éowyn loves it around Nanny and Granddad’s and in the end Amélie was no bother at all, so it was a very pleasant afternoon.  After registering Amélie we headed straight back to Lucinda parents where we stayed for tea.  Thanks Jenny!  And now with Éowyn in bed and Amélie sated we await what the night may bring.

We had an interesting coincidence today.  The registrar that registered Amélie’s birth was the same registrar that married Lucinda and I.  Lucinda remembered her immediately, she has an excellent memory for faces.  I admit that it wasn’t until she said that I remembered.  Not really synchronicity but a nice coincidence nevertheless.

Until the next time,

Peace and love


Meet the family

I’m back.  Did you miss me?

The last two days have been all about the family, hence no write ups and no photos posted.  Friday was devoted purely to Myself, Lucinda, Éowyn and Amélie.  We spent the whole day together getting to know each other as a family quartet with only one visitor, my friend Andy.

This we thought was especially important for Éowyn as she is the one that is probably going to be affected the most without the necessary intellect to understand why this tiny crying thing is taking up so much of mommy and daddy’s time.  Fortunately, I think she is also too tiny to be jealous or spiteful.  In fact, she has been a wonderful big sister.  If Amélie is in her moses basket and begins to cry, Éowyn will go over to her and try to calm her.  That is by one of two methods, either saying “Shhh!” or gently stroking her tummy.  Although she hasn’t quite got her tongue around her little sister’s name yet, and calls her ‘Amémie‘.

Éowyn also likes to hold Amélie.  She will sit on the sofa and put a cushion on her lap.  We have told her to put her arm out to support Amélie’s head and neck and it seems to have sunk in. Éowyn will usually only hold Amélie for a couple of minutes, and gently stroke her tummy and give her tender kisses.  It is very sweet.  However, when Amélie is crying uncontrollably Éowyn will put her fingers in her ears and look pleadingly at us saying, “Noisy, noises.” We have to agree!

Amélie still hasn’t settled into any kind of routine and seems to suffer from wind (colic) more at night than in the day, so myself and Lucinda are surviving on very little sleep at the moment.  The infacol has begun to work but she still seems colicky at night.  One of my friends has also recommended colief, which is quite pricey but a small price for a good night’s sleep and more importantly a daughter that is not in pain.  Thanks Clare!  We’ll let you know how we get on with it.

Saturday was definitely a day for family.  Nanny Fran and Auntie Liz came down from West Bromwich, Auntie Mary came over from Woking and Uncle Steve, Auntie Zoe and Megan and Finley also came to visit the newest member of the family.  The sales of biscuits and tea bags in the Staines area has increased considerably this past week.  Thank goodness we have a dishwasher, 30 minutes on eco-cycle and we have a constant stream of clean cups.  I think that Éowyn is enjoying the visitors as much (if not more) than we are, for she is getting just as many presents as Amélie and everyone wants to talk to her.  We never cease to find it amazing how generous everyone is.  Thank you all.

Nanny Fran and Auntie Liz stayed down south (it is OK they have had their injections) the night (stopping at Lucinda’s parents), so there were more munches and a chance for Éowyn to play with them before they headed back up the M40.  Éowyn was so excited to see her Nanny Fran and especially her Auntie Liz.  When she saw them coming down the path she literally begun a little dance of joy.  Obviously she does not see as much of my mom compared to Lucinda’s parents but we try to Skype at least once a week and whenever Éowyn pretends to be on the phone invariably it tends to be Nanny Fran.

There was still room in the schedule for more visitors before Sunday evening.  Uncle Michael popped round with Cristina, Lauren and Maddie and Lucinda’s Auntie Diane and Auntie Sally with cousin Lucy popped round to welcome the new edition.  Amélie has now meet all her Uncles and Aunties and a number of Great-Uncle and Great Aunties.  So for less than a week old she is doing pretty well!

Last night we thought that the colic had gone.  Amélie when down after her bedtime feed and didn’t stir until after 0300 which was just over 4.5 hours.  ‘Great!’ we thought.  We could have a good night.  Nope, she did not settle at all after her feed.  Lucinda took her downstairs as took Amélie downstairs at the same time yesterday and I was getting up at 0700 to take Éowyn to Jo (our childminder) for 0800.  At least Lucinda has had a little rest this morning (not enough obviously, but some).  I have done the house husbandly duties and the fridge is stocked and meals have been prepared and while Lucinda waits for the midwife, I will be heading back to Jo’s to pick our firstborn up.

Hopefully I will be able to add more photos tomorrow but for those of you who are new visitors to the website, do not forget that there are plenty of photos on the Flickr site that you can access but clicking on the photo in the right hand column or alternatively clicking here.

Just a footnote that since Éowyn has learnt to say “Boing. Boing, Baggies Baggies!” (I am a cruel father) West Bromwich Albion haven’t lost and are currently sitting pretty in 6th place.  It is too early in season to glean anything from that but quite a nice thing for Amélie to have been born when your team are playing attractive football and high up in the table.  This has probably put the collybosh on the team, especially since we are playing Manchester United at Old Trafford next and for that I apologise to the whole Baggies fraternity.

Peace and love