Ready or not, Lyla Kathleen Staudt was determined to celebrate the new year with her parents.
At 12:59 a.m. Jan. 1, she became the first baby born in Forsyth County in 2011. She measured 6 pounds, 15 ounces and 19.5 inches long.
“We got here at about 11 o’clock and by the time everything was ready, it was one minute before 1 o’clock,” said her father, Preston Staudt.
“Our son came like two and a half weeks early and this was really only a week and a couple of days early, so we were ready.”
The due date was Jan. 11, and mother Katie Staudt had a C-section scheduled for Jan. 4. But contractions started New Year’s Eve and the couple knew it was time.
A New Year’s baby “never really crossed our minds,” Katie Staudt said.
Added her husband: “We were actually hoping for the 31st or earlier for the tax break. New Year’s Eve is the big day, so we were trying to get her on New Year’s Eve, that way she could go out and have a good time on her 21st birthday.
“Now she’s got to wait until midnight to celebrate — with her dad there.”
Married for about seven years, the Staudts moved from Ohio to Manhattan, N.Y., where they lived for five years before moving to Forsyth County in early 2009.
Their 2-year-old son Liam, short for William, was born in New York, which his father said was a much different experience than Saturday’s delivery at Northside Hospital-Forsyth.
“We took a cab home last time and it was 13 degrees out,” he said. “This place was wonderful.”
Preston Staudt said he can also see a difference in his daughter’s temperament.
“She’s been pleasant. She sleeps a lot and she’s been really good about eating,” he said. “I think they’re going to be very different. She seems very calm and quiet.
“He’s really good, he’s just a live wire. He’s very sweet and he’s a fun little boy.”
Coming from a tiny Manhattan apartment, he said the couple is “getting adjusted to the big lifestyle with a lot more room for our children now.”
Katie Staudt said she’s taken advantage of the county’s education and recreation opportunities, as well as clubs and family-focused organizations.
“We do a bunch of things,” she said. “It’s great with all the parks and story times at the libraries.”
Her husband wasn’t sure how their son would react to a little sister, but said the child knew something was going on.
“He used to point to Katie’s belly and say ‘car,’ because he didn’t know that many words,” Preston Staudt said. “But now ... he points to babies in the nurseries and he says ‘more.’”
Growing up with two brothers, Preston Staudt said he’s used to a family of boys. One of his brothers, however, has two daughters and with Lyla’s arrival, the family balance is shifting.
“We’ve been all guys for a long time, but we’re learning our gentler side now, although I think the girls turn out to be pretty aggressive too,” he said.
“I’ve been bracing myself for this my entire life.”