Tyke wins first baby contest

Jan. 5, 2011

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Happy parents Elizabeth and Richard Stillwell with little Sawyer, who was delivered on Monday as Providence Hood River’s official First Baby of 2011.

You might have heard the cheerful, familiar strains of Brahms Lullaby piping through the halls of Providence Hood River Memorial Hospital on Monday, Jan. 3 at 12:33 p.m.

Curious? The answer is an easy one. The music, now played whenever a new baby is born at PHRMH, welcomed Sawyer Matheson Stillwell into the world.

And Sawyer, along with his parents Elizabeth and Richard Stillwell, is receiving an extra dose of welcome from the community, since Sawyer is the first official baby of 2011 for Hood River County.

A hearty blonde with a gusty cry, Sawyer weighed in at 7 pounds and 8 ounces, measuring 21 inches in length.

Sawyer and his parents will be taking home a host of donated baby-friendly items from local businesses, courtesy of the Hood River News and their advertisers.

In addition, PHRMH will be waiving the insurance deductible normally accompanying the joyous arrival of a new baby.

Robin Henson, M.D., and Pam Howard, R.N., assisted the Stillwells in guiding the new brother into the family.

And, late in the evening on Jan. 3, following some rest for both the new mom and baby Sawyer, older brother Richard Brenton, aged 2½, will have been in to make his acquaintance with his younger sibling.

According to Barbara Ayers, marketing director for PHRMH, the competition was looking tough for Sawyer's first-baby-of-the-year win, with "a rush of deliveries right up until midnight on Dec. 31.

"And then, we had no one until the Stillwells arrived in the early morning of Jan. 3," Ayers said.

"We are just so happy to have Sawyer arrive healthy," said Elizabeth Stillwell.

"We have been waiting a long time for this little guy," added Richard Stillwell. "We had a miscarriage before him and it has been a long nine months, just hoping he would be okay."

Richard Stillwell is employed at Google, in The Dalles, and Elizabeth works as a volunteer for the Hood River County Commission on Children and Families. She has been active in the child car seat safety program and childbirth classes.

The Stillwells have lived in the Odell area since March 2006 and were high school sweethearts.

Their first son, Richard, was delivered at PHRMH during the new construction period with jackhammers wailing through their special day.

"We just had to come back and try out the new delivery area. It's a lot quieter this time!" laughed both Stillwells.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge



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