S: Annika's Beautiful Beginning
FC: Annika's Beautiful Beginning
1: "Where there is love, there is life." -Indira Gandhi | A story of our family... | for Annika Loren Smith Created by Alicia Smith Photography by Dominika Lis
2: One benefit of a high-risk pregnancy: we got to see you every fortnight! Each visit we got to watch you grow and be re-assured that you were healthy and growing well. Occasionally we even got to see you on the newer 3D technology!
3: Auntie Dominika took a few photo shoots as Mama's belly grew. Even then, Sophie loved giving you kisses and cuddles!
6: Welcome to the world, Annika Loren! | 10 August, 2010 | 9:33 am | 48 cm | 2.47 kilos
7: After Mama spent about a week of bed rest in the hospital, you came into the world 7 weeks early. It was a rainy Tuesday morning, and my labour was only 3 hours long. All of in the room that morning breathed a collective sigh of relief when we heard your strong little cry. NO ventilators for you! Your tiny lungs and heart and brain were perfect. Your mama cried many tears of joy. (Your skin was still paper thin and quite see-through, so you had a very red look in those early days.)
8: August 15,2010
9: They were beautiful, bittersweet days - the 18 days you spent in the hospital. From that very first breath, and from the first attempt at feeding, you showed all the best signs that you would grow and thrive. But nothing was certain, and there were many days of holding our breath, waiting to see what you would do. We prayed for faith, and we continued in hope...working along with the medical staff, as partners in your care - willing you to grow and to gain strength. | So you spent a lot of time wrapped in a Bili Blanket, with gauze sunglasses taped to your face to protect your eyes. You had a surprisingly strong suck reflex for a newborn 33-weeker, but at first you did not yet have the strength to feed enough to grow. So what nutrition you couldn't get yourself, was given to you in a tube through your nose, while you rested and stored energy for that next feed. Your Mama spent every day holding and feeding you in the nursery, and expressing more milk for you. Sometimes we fell asleep together in the comfy big armchairs - the pink one was our favourite! | For the first week, you needed regular treatment for jaundice, as your little liver wasn't quite mature enough yet to get rid of all the biliruben in your blood.
10: Peek | a | Boo | Look who's a big sister now! | Your Daddy looked forward to spending time with you as often as he could. He gave you kangaroo cuddles and sang to you. We all prayed for you to come home soon!
11: Annika and Sophia meet for the first time. Sophia can't wait to give her baby sister a big cuddle and a kiss! For now, she'll just have to settle for a gentle pat! | Sophia learned and followed the SCN rules so well! Wash your hands right up to the elbows, and wear the special gown!
13: Our beautiful, ,tiny new person...we love you completely. Welcome to our family!
14: Visiting Nana's house | You absolutely loved cuddles from everyone - Auntie Dom & Uncle Dom, even Cousin Sebastian and Sister Sophie! But posing for the camera to show how big you are...not such a favourite activity!
18: We've been waiting for you, we're so glad you came. We've been looking forward to showing you the place... There's so much in store and We've been waiting for you
19: Your little hands, your little toes, I cherish all your littles while they last
22: You loved being held by everyone. Fascinated by faces and always up for a cuddle, nothing made you as happy as being the center of attention! Some of your first giggles were inspired by your sister Sophie, who loves to make you laugh! Blessed with precious times with your Grandma Gayle, Nana Pam, and your"Big Nana" Monica! | Time with your Grandmas
24: Grandma Gayle's Visit | It was so good to have Grandma come and stay with us for 3 weeks in those early days. We took you out for your first excursions while she was here, with your cousins Sebastian and Oskar, Nana and Granddad, Dom & Dominika too. It was so much fun to spend some time out of the house and all together!
25: Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary | & Mt Coot-tha Botanical Gardens
27: Kisses and Cuddles