Bundles of joy on Christmas Day for proud parents

Dozens of families celebrated the ultimate gift on Christmas Day as it was baby-bliss as usual at the country’s maternity hospitals.

There was nearly one baby for every day of Christmas at Cork University Maternity Hospital (CUMH), where staff helped to bring 11 bundles of joy into the world on the big day from shortly before 2am.

Among them was Noelle Bernadette, daughter of Joanne and James Fenton from Fermoy in north Cork. While most of the nation’s children had been tearing open presents for hours, she arrived at 7.30am and weighed in just under 8lb.

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A 7lb 11oz girl arrived to Cara Kenny from Kilworth just over an hour earlier.

Also making his debut at 3.03pm was Ciarán Noel O’Connell to happy parents Karen and Tomás, from Dromahane, Mallow. Ciarán weighed in at a healthy 7lb 5oz.

“Everything went fine, everyone is happy. I suppose 11 births is about an average day,” said Jean O’Connor, manager at the Cork hospital.

In Dublin, Ciara Lynch from Drumcondra gave birth to the first child born at the Rotunda Hospital on Christmas Day. Weighing in at 7lb 2oz, Amelia Kennedy came into the world at 1.38am.

Claire Colloff had her son Patrick less than 10 minutes earlier at Kerry General Hospital in her home town of Tralee. The 7lb 13oz boy was one of five children delivered to four mothers at the maternity unit there.

The first were twins — a boy and a girl — who arrived a few weeks early and were receiving specialist care as they each weighed just over a kilogram when they were born at 12.52am and 12.53am on Christmas Day.

The National Maternity Hospital in Dublin’s Holles Street had around a dozen deliveries on Christmas morning. They included the first child of Gintare Burauskaite and Robertas Siupinskas from Bray, Co Wicklow.

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