Say Hello to Phoebe, Our Beautiful Baby Girl

by Craig Brelsford
Founder, shanghaibirding.com

phoebe
Phoebe & Daddy

Our daughter, Phoebe Lynn Brelsford, was born 1 June 2020 in Orlando, Florida. Phoebe’s first life bird was Wood Stork, flying past our window after delivering our daughter to us. An immaculate white Rock Dove alighted on the windowsill, blessed the child, and flew off. Phoebe’s beautiful mother, Elaine, and I witnessed the miracle.

Phoebe weighed 8 lbs., 3 oz. (3.7 kg) and had a length of 20 inches (51 cm). She bears an unusually close resemblance to her brother, “Tiny” Craig. Even Elaine, shown photos of the children at the same age, mistakes the one for the other. “It’s like Himalayan and Oriental Cuckoo!” we exclaimed.

Phoebe’s Chinese name is Dù Yíníng (杜怡宁). Her English name honors the phoebes (genus Sayornis). Each winter, Eastern Phoebe visits our back yard here in central Florida.

Elaine, Tiny, and I thank God for Phoebe, our inexpressible gift. Wish our daughter well by leaving a comment below.

PHOTOS

Pregnant Elaine
Elaine had another smooth pregnancy. Here she is taking a break during our Pregnant Mom Photo Shoot. (Craig Brelsford)
Elaine and Craig
The proud parents, Elaine Du and Craig Brelsford, Elaine being great with child, 3 May 2020. (Craig Brelsford)
Phoebe
Phoebe Lynn Brelsford moments after her birth. (Craig Brelsford)
Phoebe
Phoebe, age 6 days. (Craig Brelsford)
Phoebe
Phoebe our blue mermaid. (Craig Brelsford)
Tiny and Meimei
In Phoebe Tiny has gained a friend for life. Our earnest hope is that their brotherly love will continue into the 22nd century. (Elaine Du)
Tiny and Meimei
The solemnity shown by Tiny, age 2½, in the presence of his sister belies his young age. (Craig Brelsford)
sleeping
Phoebe here, as usual, is asleep, but not at rest—her body and brain are undergoing rapid development. (Elaine Du)
Phoebe
Phoebe awake and alert, 23 June 2020. (Elaine Du)
Elaine, Tiny, Phoebe
Elaine (R) and I birded China together from 2012, the year we met, to 2018, when we returned to America. I love and cherish the life we had in China. Elaine and I still talk about the walk she and I took one cloudless evening in Xining, Qinghai in July 2016. It was the midpoint of our very best birding trip, our summer-long expedition to the Rooftop of the World. With glorious memories of Qinghai still fresh, we resolved that night to give up high-stakes birding and start a family. Two children resulted from that decision: our son, ‘Tiny’ Craig, born in Shanghai in 2017, and our daughter, Phoebe, born 1 June 2020 in Florida. Elaine and I are passing on to our children our love for birding. Tiny has already shown flashes of brilliance, being able to identify by sound tough species such as Chuck-will’s-widow. Our daughter’s name was inspired by the phoebes, a genus of New World tyrant-flycatchers. (Elaine Du)
family
The Brelsfords on Father’s Day, 21 June 2020. Clockwise from L: Craig Brelsford, ‘Tiny’ Craig Brelsford, Elaine Du, and Phoebe Brelsford. I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. This is abounding. To fail to cherish moments such as the one I am currently living through would be an instance of ingratitude of the highest magnitude. (Susan Brelsford)

Featured image: Phoebe Lynn Brelsford, age 6 days, photographed at her home in Debary, Florida, USA. (Craig Brelsford)

FURTHER READING

This post is the second in a series celebrating the Brelsfords’ children. See also

Say Hello to Tiny, Our Beautiful Baby Boy

Reach us: info@shanghaibirding.com

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Say Hello to Tiny, Our Beautiful Baby Boy

by Craig Brelsford
Founder, shanghaibirding.com

Our chick has hatched. Our son, Tiny, was born at 10:08 a.m. 26 Oct. 2017 at Changning Maternity Hospital (长妇幼) in Shanghai.

At birth Tiny weighed 4080 grams (9 lbs., 8 斤 1 两). His length was 52 cm (20.47 inches).

Tiny’s beautiful mother, my wife Elaine Du, is doing well, having completed her 月子 or month of post-partum recuperation. Elaine’s sister Regina flew down from their home province of Heilongjiang and helped us.

Tiny is the nickname of Craig Eugene Brelsford II. We say “Tiny” instead of “Junior.”

Tiny’s Chinese name is 杜泰宁 (Dù Tàiníng). 杜 is Elaine’s family name. 泰宁 sounds like “Tiny” and is the name of the county in Fujian where the bird-rich mountain Emeifeng is located. Our 2015 Emeifeng trip is one of Elaine’s and my best birding memories.

Tiny’s first life bird was Japanese Tit, calling below our window at the hospital.

Elaine and I are happy beyond expression and deeply grateful.

Here are some photos from the first month of Tiny’s life. Wish Tiny well by leaving a comment below.

The Brelsford family
When my parents, sister, Elaine, and I posed for this picture in Debary, Florida on 12 Feb. 2017, little did we know that Elaine was already with child. (Craig Brelsford)
Elaine
Elaine had a smooth pregnancy. Here we are on 21 Aug. 2017. We were about to have Elaine’s pregnancy pictures done at Mǎruìshā Értóng Shèyǐng (玛瑞莎儿童摄影). (Craig Brelsford)
tiny at birth
Tiny moments after birth, 26 Oct. 2017. Watching the birth of any child is moving; witnessing the birth of one’s own child is moving beyond words. (Craig Brelsford)
Daddy holding Tiny
Daddy holding Tiny the day after Tiny’s birth. (Elaine Du)
Tiny the thinker
Tiny the thinker ponders while Elaine his mummy beams. (Craig Brelsford)
Tiny the holy man
Tiny the holy man raises his hand to bless the world. (Craig Brelsford)
blue eyes
For the moment at least, Tiny has blue eyes, like Daddy. (Craig Brelsford)
Tiny passport
Tiny the little citizen poses for his U.S. passport photo. (Elaine Du)
Tiny in his crib
Tiny in his crib, 9 Nov. 2017. (Elaine Du)
photo studio
The crew from Mǎruìshā came on Day 8 and turned our guest room into a photo studio. They were very professional and did a great job. (Craig Brelsford)
Elaine & Tiny
Elaine showing Tiny cards with simple designs. (Craig Brelsford)
Tiny
When Tiny is well-rested and has a full belly, then he is ready to learn, even at his young age. (Craig Brelsford)
Craig Eugene Brelsford holding Tiny
Craig Brelsford holding his baby son, ‘Tiny’ Craig Brelsford. (Elaine Du)
Sleep, Tiny
Sleep now, Baby Tiny, Mummy and Daddy will take good care of you. (Craig Brelsford)

Featured image: Craig Eugene Brelsford, known affectionately as Tiny, 8 days old. Photo by Mǎruìshā Értóng Shèyǐng (玛瑞莎儿童摄影).

FURTHER READING

This post is the first in a series celebrating the Brelsfords’ children. See also

Say Hello to Phoebe, Our Beautiful Baby Girl

Reach us: info@shanghaibirding.com

Be notified every time we post. Send an
email with “Subscribe” as the subject to
info@shanghaibirding.com

Donate to Shanghai Birding!