By David Raleigh
Limerick mother Aine Laffan cooked up a New Year's Day storm in her kitchen as she delivered her son Odhran on the kitchen floor.
Aine, (34), from Lisnagry, had wanted a home birth, but didn't expect it so soon - little Odhran arrived three weeks ahead of his due date, weighing an even seven pounds, and looking for his breakfast.
"I'm feeling great, tired, but great. I'll never forget it; I had him in the kitchen, on the floor. We'll never be able to look at the spot on the floor in the same way," she laughed.
Proud dad Denis Kelly, made a late night dash from his family home in Roscommon to be with Aine, and as it turned out, he was in plenty of time to "catch" his son who arrived home at 4.42am.
"I got down around 12.30am, and Aine woke me at 3.40am. I caught (Odhran) as he came out, and the ambulance arrived on ten minutes later," Mr Kelly said.
"I'm very excited. He was three weeks early so we never expected it to happen when it did. We're very lucky everything went ok."
"We had wanted a home birth but we didn't think it would happen like it did. He still came at our home," he said.
Beaming mum Aine added: "We had a few complications, as he was in a breech position, but in the end everything went ok; It was a lovely experience."
After the early morning kitchen delivery, the couple's two-and-a-half-year old son, Fionn, joined his parents and Aine's mother, Martha, to catch his first glimpse of his younger brother.
Aine and Odhran were then whisked by ambulance to the University Limerick Maternity Hospital for observation.
Paying tribute to the nursing staff, Mr Kelly said: "The midwife here was great and made everything really relaxed and comfortable for us. The nurses let us take all the time we needed with Odhran after the ambulance brought us in."
Meanwhile, Declan and Gloria O'Grady, from Patrickswell, were celebrating the arrival of their first child, Lily Mary Eileen, who was born at the Limerick maternity hospital, at one minute past midnight, weighing seven pounds, four ounces.
"She was due on January 3rd but it was a fine delivery; it lasted six and a half hours, from 5.30pm to 12.01am," said delighted mum Gloria.
"I'm very happy and very tired. It's great, and hopefully it's the first of many," she added.
Delighted dad Declan joked: "I've already ordered her the Patrickswell GAA jersey, the order is on hold, as I was waiting for her size."
Another New Years Day newborn Samuel Wojciech Golral was being showered with love by his thrilled Polish parents also in the Limerick baby hospital.
Weighing a little over three pounds, and arriving nine days before his due date, tiny Samuel was catching up on some sleep in his mother Katarzyna's arms after his "very quick" arrival at 2.25am.