Svea Irene Rundman's first birthday!

One year ago today our sweet little daughter Svea was born! Man, what a whirlwind life she's had. I remember that day in complete detail, but it also seems like MUCH longer than a year ago.

My most vivid observation during Svea's delivery was the blinding power of love and life that was radiating from Dawn. It seemed like that if you were standing outside the delivery room you'd be able to see lightning emanating from under the door. Dawn was like a Supernova or something, and I remember thinking that all the hate and fear and death out in the world was powerless against this kind of unstoppable and natural and life-giving love. Whew.

Svea was born on a Sunday. That following Monday will always be remembered as one of the most purely pleasurable and blissfully happy days of my life. Svea slept in the hospital nursery (with occasional nursing visits) during the night, so Dawn and I snoozed in the hospital room, completely relaxed, getting tons of delicious sleep. We spent the day being visited by Paavo, my parents, other family members and friends, and resting some more. We snuggled with newborn Svea, and she was warm and soft and happy and healthy and nursing like a pro. Somebody brought me a Butterburger from Culvers. At the end of the day Dawn and I chilled out alone in the room and watched that show Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip on the hospital TV. (That was a great show....why didn't anybody watch it? Now it's been canceled!) And we snuggled more with our new girl and drifted off for one more night of heavenly sleep. Man, that day was ideal.

One year later, baby Svea is pushing toddlerhood. She's just days away from walking, she seems to have identified a favorite toy (weird blankie with stuffed dolly head), she waves and says "Ba Ba," she's got a wild "cave-baby" haircut, and she loves wrestling and snarling around with Daddy (that's me). She's a cool kid. I like to dress her in pink, red, purple, and orange at the same time. Lately, we've been dancing together to the Pretenders' album Learning to Crawl (no pun intended)..."Hush little baby, don't you cry, when we get to Tucson, you'll see why..." Oh, and she comforts herself by sucking on her 3rd and 4th fingers, resulting in a virtual flash of the "heavy metal horns" hand signal for the world to see. Rock on, Sve Sve!

Yesterday we had an awesome birthday bash for her! Svea's name means "daughter of Sweden" so it was a Swedish-themed party: Swedish flag decorations, Swedish food and drinks, The Cardigans pumpin' thru the iPod speakers, her IKEA highchair, and government-provided health care for everyone in attendance.


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