herald

Tuesday 2 September 2014

Year of the bump

2012 was the year of the baby bump -- a busy time for maternity hospitals as our baby boom moved up a gear.

Among the parents were hundreds of high-profile couples who welcomed their little miracles into the world.

The number 13 seems to lucky for Ireland -- rugby hero Brian O'Driscoll will be dad to a new baby in 2013.

Brian (33) and his wife Amy Huberman announced that they are expecting their first child early next year.

Amy (33) has done working mums proud by continuing to work right through her pregnancy, even managing to launch a new novel while working on acting projects.

Meanwhile Damien Duff (33) may have announced his retirement from international soccer but he and his wife Elaine (28) won an even bigger prize this year.

The couple named their latest Green Army supporter -- a little girl -- Darcy. She already has a big brother, Woody, who was born in April 2011.

Celebrations

It was a year of mixed blessings for Michelle Heaton (33), who opted for a mastectomy after discovering she had a breast cancer gene. But the Liberty X singer says that baby Faith was the best thing to have happened to her.

Pop star Michelle and her Irish hubbie Hugh Hanley had their first child on January 11. And she built a strong bond with fellow mum-of-one Una Healy (31).

In August, Una became a mum for the first time with rugby husband Ben Foden.

The couple welcomed Aoife Belle into the world and the Tipperary native proclaimed her the 'sixth member' of The Saturdays.

There were also celebrations for actress Leigh Arnold this year. Leigh (23) received an early Christmas present with the news she is pregnant with her second baby. She and partner Steve Davies already have a seven-month-old son, Hunter.

Baby Seimi arrived in April for RTE sports reader Evanne Ni Chuillinn (31) and her partner Brian Fitzsimons.

Evanne revealed that she put on five stone during her pregnancy but managed to lose almost four stone over the past six months.

Meanwhile hard-working mum Anna Daly (33) said she plans to clock in right at the end of her latest pregnancy.

The Ireland AM presenter and partner Ben Ward announced in September that she was expecting her second child. She gave birth to James Scott in September 2011.

There was something of a mini baby boom in TV3 as Xpose producer Debbie O'Donnell revealed that she was pregnant. And RTE star Lucy Kennedy (36) and her husband Richie Governey welcomed Holly in April -- a sister to three-year-old Jack.

The Brits went into overdrive when it was revealed favourite royal Kate Middleton was pregnant -- she was admitted to hospital with morning sickness last month and all eyes will be on her over the next six months.

After a miscarriage heartache, Britain's Got Talent judge Amanda Holden (41) and Chris Hughes welcomed their second daughter, Hollie Rose, on January 23.

Meanwhile over in the US the long-awaited delivery of Beyonce Knowles (31) and Jay-Z's daughter Blue Ivy came on January 7 while Hollywood royalty Jennifer Garner (40) and Ben Affleck celebrated the arrival of their first son, Samuel, on February 28.

clairemurphy@herald.ie

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