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©Robert William Baker

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Alistair Simon Baker

When Bella & Quinn were born I did a writeup of those days, so in keeping with my self-made family tradition here's my writeup for Baby number 3 - our surprise package :) BB3 was due on the 14th of September, which was a beautiful spring day in Cape Town - sunny skies and hardly any wind. That afternoon I took Bella & Quinn for a ride to Orms & bought a Sony HDR-CX760E, which was used to take all the photos & footage.

At 15h10 on the 14th Karen came to me & without any words being spoken, I knew that contractions had begun - she's got the same look on her face as when in labour with Quinn. Karen told me contractions were some 40m apart. I phoned Lynn, who agreed to pick up Bella after work (nice having a helpful big sister), and Angie agreed to stay the night to look after Quinn. I left a message on Facebook that contractions had started, and here are some of the replies:

Then I went and pumped up the birthing pool fully and put the lining on.

By 10h30 Quinn was asleep with Angelina, in the outside room. Lynn had bbm'd me, to let me know that Bella was asleep as well. Contractions were now 20m apart, and we were waiting for Mariana, the midwife to arrive. I started filling up the birthing pool with hot water from the geyser, but that wasn't enough and I put the urn on as well. Karen hopped into the birthing pool once it was warm enough.

Marianne arrive at about 11h00, and I made her some tea and myself some coffee (I rarely drink caffeinated coffee, but suspected this was going to be a long night). At about 11h50 I climbed into the birthing pool with Karen. It was a bit of a different birth to Bella & Quinn, as Karen's water didn't break until after baby's head was out. It was quite amazing to be able to feel the placenta as Karen pushed him out. Although all the photos was light because of the flash, the room was actually dark, we had the bathroom light on to have a bit of light to work with. The room was nice and warm as well, as we had the heater on.

Then suddenly...I noticed that Marianne was leaning on the table on which the urn was and said "watch out" as I noticed the urn leaning over...but nothing could be done at that point and Marianne leapt up as boiling hot water showered onto her legs. She ran into the shower, and I went and got some ice to put on her feet. Later, on examination we would discover she had what appeared to be 2nd degree burns on her foot, which had large blisters swelling up on it. I took some of the ice back to the freezer and then ran back, and arrived back in the bedroom just in time to hear Karen shout "I can't!" as she pushed baby out, and the water broke just after baby's head came out (apparently this is good for baby, as it cushions his head). I climbed into the birthing pool, and Marianne took photos as we cuddled BB3. He cried a bit more than when Quinn was born, but not as much as Bella.

Baby Baker 3 with Mom and Dad

For the record he was born at 00h10 on the 15th September 2012 (clearly he likes making an early start to the day). He weighed 3.88kg at birth, the heaviest of our babies at birth, and his head circumference was 37cm - which apparently is quite big. The fact that he's born on the 15th makes it a bit easier to remember, as Bella was also born on the 15th (but of March). As you can see in the picture he had some brown hair on his head, and his nails were long enough to scratch his face with.

Then I heard Quinn crying for Mommy, with Angie outside. I went and spent the next half hour with Quinn, who was desperate to see his Mommy. When I went back into the bedroom and held our baby, of course Quinn suddenly wanted to be with me now. Quinn held baby's hand and head and was very curious - he hasn't quite mastered the art of being gentle, so I helped him. Was so sweet when he gave his brother a kissie. Baby mostly fidgeted with his hands, which he enjoyed sticking into his mouth. He wasn't crying much, mainly just mouthing & fidgetting. By the end of the night if I said, "Where's your brother", Quinn would point at BB3. Marianne in the meantime stitched up Karen, who wasn't at all happy with the injections & needles.

Baby was wrapped in a blanket, and I was a bit concerned that baby was getting cold, so we put a hat on him, a nappy and dressed him. Then we placed baby on Karen's boob - this is actually where he was happiest & wanted to be, same as I remember with Quinn on the first night. I got a story for Quinn, and he eventually fell asleep. By 03h30 I was the only one awake :)

Baker boys

Here's a photo of Karen & Alistair in the morning (in fact it was a little bit after this picture was taken that we made a final decision on his name - Alistair Simon Baker).

Mommy & Alistair

The state of the world on the 14th September 2012

What else was going on the world at the time of BB3's birth? The paralympics & Olympics had recently ended, Bafana Bafana beat Mozambique in soccer that week, a program of QE3 (Quantitative easing) was announced on the 13th September, where the US Fed would be buying private sector debt instruments; and the big news in South Africa was about the labour unrest at Lonmin Mines (Marikana). On the 15th September the Springboks play the All Blacks in rugby, and the T20 World Cup is due to start shortly.

birthing pool

2 Feb 2017

Ali has learnt how to use the mouse on my laptop. He sits and watches Toy Cars 2 youtube clips on a side of the screen, whilst I work on my side. He now knows how to pause, restart, move the mouse to select a new clip, and click "skip ads"

31 Jan 2017

Today I saw Ali putting on a seatbelt for the first time, on our VW Transporter - it's a bit challenging as it needs to be done over the jumper seat. He told me he's done it before.

30 Dec 2016

Bella and Quinn were going out for a sleepover with the Oosthuizens, so I took Ali out to Grandwest. He didn't want to watch a movie, just got the popcorn and a slush puppy. However, he did want to go bowling, so he did that for the first time. They had a special metal frame for children to place a ball in and roll it down towards the pins.

17 Nov 2016

For the first time, today Ali asked me to go for a run with him. So, I thought it's the first time so I better get off my backside and do it. On our way, Jonnie let it be known he wanted in on the action. So, we jogged to Margaret Avenue and then to Ennerdale, past the park and back home (me with Jonnie on my shoulders).

15 Jun 2015

Ali had his first haircut today. The golden baby locks get into a tangle, and he doesn't like having his hair brushed. So, today he went with Quinn and both of them had their hair cut.

25 Mar 2015

Ali's confidence in the pool is growing in leaps and bounds. He can't swim on his own, but he jumps off me towards the wall of the pool, sinks well under, then as he rises he feels around for the side of the pool and lifts his head out.

26 Feb 2015

Ali was telling me he wanted to go in the "Beeping car"...after a while I realised the Toyota Yaris was the beeping car, because it made beeping sounds when you're driving with the seatbelt off!

16 Jul 2014

Ali has been stringing words together for a while now. When Ali is calling somebody, he says "Want you. Me"

25 Dec 2013

Ali gave me a kiss for the first time this morning.

Dec 2013

Ali has started saying a few words, or at least trying to say them. The very first word he started saying and also uses all the time was Dada (not just to call Daddy, but also to call Mommy or Angie!). The first other word Karen heard was "bubble", and the first other words I've heard are "car" (gar), "tree" and "bird".

19 Nov 2013

When Alistair wakes up at night, usually he wants Mommy to put him back to bed. Last night, he let me (Daddy) cuddle him, and he lay with his head on my arm and went back to sleep.

21 Sep 2013

Today Ali started standing for a few seconds unassisted, before falling onto his bum

2 June 2013

Alistair's 4th footh pops out, front top middle-left
Ali also pulls himself up to standing for the first time
Ali also started crawling (I'm talking getting around, not just 2 or 3 steps)

28 May 2013

We can feel Ali's 3rd tooth, front top middle-right.

1 Apr 2013

We feel Ali's first tooth growing out, on the front bottom right.

20 Jan 2013

Ali rolled over for the first time, and found his feet - Bella was watching him and showed us that he was playing with his feet.

22 Sep 2012

The stump of Alistair's umbilical cord falls off.

20 Sep 2012

Today I noticed that Alistair has an appreciation for classical music. He went quiet when he heard this.