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"And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God,
to them who are the called according to His purpose"

Romans 8:28



March 25, 2008

Week 5 update...

Dear Diary,
I guess the correct heading of this post should be week 6 of Isla's young life, shouldn't it?
Anyways, which ever week it is, she is doing well. Last week Thursday was a memorable day for us as she gave her mom and dad her first smile (if you speak to her Oma, she'll say she had one at week 2 but that is just her wishful thinking!). It was a half smile but she has since figured out how to move her entire mouth when she wants too. They are still few and far between and the best time to possibly see one is when she is about half way through her bottle. She is becoming more and more alert with longer awake periods when we have some very interesting "conversations" as was happening in the photo below.












She loves to hold hands with her mom....



Colin was off work yesterday and we decided to go for a short drive because Isla likes to get out and see the spring lambs.

This is not a happy face -- her lamb was just born and she was being very protective

Ahhh, baa, baa, black sheep

A view of Slemish mountain where the patron saint of Ireland, St. Patrick was reported to have preached from the top while shepherding his grazing sheep.

No date yet on the move to Colorado but we anticipate late spring or early summer.

Hope all are well where you are.

Heather, Colin & Isla

March 22, 2008

Spot the difference

Dear Diary,

We came across this old picture, who do you think it is?...




Same dress, different generation...

March 19, 2008

The Big Weigh In

Dear Diary,

Here she is, all 7 lbs 9.5 ozs of Isla!!!

Growing like a weed as they say but her growth has slowed down ever so slightly off her 2 ozs. a day rate she was on... Nevertheless, we are very pleased she is doing so well...

Heather, Colin and Isla

March 18, 2008

Pretty in Pink!

Dear Diary,
I just had to share a few photos of Isla taken this morning. As you can see from the dribble in the corner of her mouth, she just had her breakfast....


Isla wanted to show off some of her pretty new clothes that she is finally beginning to fit into. She has loads of lovely dresses to try on but most are still a bit big. Tomorrow the health visitor comes to the house for the big weigh in - I'm guessing 8 lbs 2 ozs but we'll have to wait and see!!

March 17, 2008

Week 4 of Isla's life....

Dear Diary,

The beginning of week four of our darling daughter's life saw her being baptized! Our own minister has been off ill for quite some time so we were concerned that we wouldn't be able to have her baptized at Gardenmore but in Colorado. The minister from 1st Larne Presbyterian was assigned to be in our church yesterday so the opportunity was available for which we are very thankful.

We had a lovely day however Nanny Black couldn't attend as she is ill and had to be hospitalized yesterday. We pray that soon she may be well enough to come home to her family.

Isla Jennifer Black wearing her daddy's baptismal gown


My cousin Marie Vandenberg is back in N. Irleand for a few days and was able to join us for this happy occasion. We wish Marie well as she moves to Scotland later this week.

Jenna Black with Isla


Erin couldn't wait to hold her little cousin!

Amy also did a great job of holding Isla and perhaps a future babysitter for her!

Today is also a big day for me -- Colin is in Galway today and tomorrow so I will be alone with Isla overnight for the first time!! So far, so good, no problems. We are having a beautiful sunny day and we've been out for an afternoon stroll which she loves.

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Heather, Colin & Isla

March 14, 2008

Head west young man!!!

Dear Diary,


By now most people know of our plans to move to Denver, Colorado. We we're told by Colin's boss to be in Denver for the first week in April and so we thought we would be leaving Northern Ireland probably the 1st of April for Toronto where we will stay with my family for a few days together. After that the plan is for Colin to fly by himself to Denver to organize the company and find us a place to live followed by myself, Isla and the cats a few weeks later. However, things have since changed as Colin's mom is seriously ill in hospital and it's best if we stay in Northern Ireland a bit longer. Colin will be in Manchester on Wednesday to discuss the move and our departure date with his boss on Wednesday.

March 11, 2008

3 weeks old!

Dear Diary,

I have been wanting to update the blog for quite some time but just never got to it so tonight I have put Isla (pronounced EYE'la) to sleep in our bedroom and I have her bedroom (and computer room) to do work on the computer. Isla is a good baby but she is easily woken up so I figure this is the best way for both of us.

Let me tell you about her first 3 weeks of life.....

Well, as many of you probably know, I had pregnancy induced hypertension from about 34 weeks onwards. Even with five weeks off work before her expected due date, not much changed and it continued to go and up and down right to the end and even after her birth! At 39 weeks a midwife was at the house and my BP was well over 100 so she was obligated to call the hospital to see what they wanted to do with me. I was told to come in with an overnight bag as they wanted to monitor me for the next 24 hours. That was Valentines day and by Saturday, I was going stir crazy in the maternity ward so I asked the doctor if I could go out to the shopping centre with Colin for a coffee at Starbucks and I was told I would be lucky if I made it outside for a lap around the car park!
I was induced on Saturday night at about 10 p.m. and had a really uncomfortable nights sleep. While I was being monitored, Isla's heartbeat kept dropping with every contraction and it was decided that I would be better off in the Delivery Suite so I was transferred there by 7 a.m. To this day, they still don't know why she was in distress but after three attempts to figure out why, I was rushed into the OR and Isla was delivered by "crash cesarean section" with me under a general anesthetic. Colin wasn't in the room either but he was right outside the door and she was delivered to her daddy's arms within minutes of her birth at 10:20 a.m. on 17th February 2008. I came around at about 11:30 a.m. so the two of them had some nice bonding time without me!!! Unfortunately for me, I don't remember much of that day but we are both thankful all went well and we have our beautiful daughter.

Isla was a mere but healthy 5lbs. 4 ozs (they attribute her size to the hypertension issue) at birth and when we took her home on the 21st February she was even less at an even 5lbs. We're very pleased to report that the little miss is gaining about 2 ozs. a day and last week Wednesday she weighed in at 6 lbs 4 ozs so we're guessing that she is now over 7 lbs. and is sleeping and eating well. She has a slight eye infection which is being treated but otherwise she is small but perfectly formed and her little chubby cheeks are proof!

About her name, it's unusual and it's Scottish. It's derived from the Scottish Hebrides island of Islay and for two people trying to find a name we both agreed on that meant something significant, we didn't do very well. I came across this name at the beginning of my pregnancy and it stuck as I loved it because it was unusual and feminine.

She eats every 3 hours to the minute but the last few days that is down to about 2 or 2.5 hours which keeps me up alot. She usually falls asleep as she's eating and if I'm lucky, occasionally she'll go 3 to 4 hours between feeds. It's tiring work but she is worth every sleepless minute. Oma left on Sunday for home after spending 9 days with us and she was determined to get a smile out of her which she claims she did but I don't think so... I'm still waiting to see the smile and after that labour and delivery, I deserve it!!!!!

This photo was taken on 1st March...


















These two photos were taken on 9th March -- can you see a difference in her size? Look at those chins!






















As for me, I'm healing well after the surgery and last week my blood pressure has FINALLY come down low enough for me to be dischrged from the midwives care.

Hope this update finds you all well.

Much love from us,
Heather, Colin and Isla