Published in the January 27, 2016 edition
By MAUREEN DOHERTY
LYNNFIELD — First-time parents Manessa and Philip Ogren are the lucky winners of the Villager’s ninth annual First Baby of the New Year contest.
They welcomed their son, Matthias Philip Ogren, into the world on Tuesday, January 12, 2016 at 12:06 a.m. at Beverly Hospital. He weighed a healthy 7 lbs., 7 oz. and measured 20 inches at birth.
At just 10 days old during his press debut, Matthias was extraordinarily alert and content, whether being held by mom or dad or spending a little bit of time on his blanket.
The couple moved to Perkins Lane in October of 2014 and are thrilled to be starting their family here.
“We’ve been trying for a long time, so it has been fantastic to finally complete our family,” Manessa said. Winning the newspaper’s contest was an unexpected bonus. The couple’s friend and neighbor, Kristen Collins, was keeping an eye on Villager’s contest as the weeks ticked by without a winner.
Matthias was officially declared the winner at noon on Jan. 18, on MLK Jr. Day, when the deadline to enter the contest had passed.
Manessa, who grew up in upstate New York and graduated from UNH with a degree in business administration, is a financial analyst for a law firm in downtown Boston.
Philip grew up in Melrose and received his degree in mechanical engineering from Michigan State. He works in Boston for a global consulting firm, McKinsey & Co. They met in 2002 shortly after Manessa moved to Massachusetts.
Their son’s arrival was made even more special due to the family connection they share with their doula, who is Philip’s aunt, Carolyn Ogren, of North Reading.
They were both so thankful she was there to offer her wisdom and assistance.
“She was absolutely essential,” Manessa said. “She was wonderful.” Philip added, “She recently retired, so she came out of retirement,” to help deliver her grandnephew.
This was a very special gift for the couple because Carolyn was also the doula for Philip’s mother, Beverly, when he was born. “She helped deliver me as well,” he said.
With the exception of helping to deliver her own grandchildren, Matthias was the first second-generation baby his aunt has helped to deliver, he said.
“We might have to pull her out of retirement if we have a second one,” Manessa said.
They initially thought Matthias was going to be born several days sooner. “As a first time mom, if I were to do it again, I would look back at the first few days of contractions and understand that they weren’t really true labor. However, in the midst of them, it was exciting and kind of painful,” she said.
As a result, they had spent all day Friday, Saturday and Sunday the weekend prior to his birth “thinking he was coming at any minute,” Manessa recalled. In fact, he did not arrive until the following Tuesday morning. On their fourth trip to the hospital, they were finally admitted on Monday.
Matthias is among the newest members of Patriot nation. “He’s a big, big Patriots fan,” his dad said, noting that his son saw his first Patriots victory when New England defeated Kansas City in the first round of the playoffs to advance to the AFC championship game.
“He hasn’t done much for the Michigan State basketball team, however,” Manessa said. Apparently, dad’s alma mater has not won a game since Matthias was born.
Matthias is the third grandchild of Philip’s parents, Philip and Beverly Ogren of Georgetown, who are formerly of Melrose. He is also the third grandchild of Manessa’s father and stepmother, Richard and Andrea LaRose of Henniker, N.H., and the first grandchild of her mother, Judith Parent of Eagle Bay, N.Y.
The baby is also blessed to have Elbert Wells of Prospect, N.Y. and Suzanne Haley of Carmel, California, as great-grandparents. Philip’s niece and nephew, Mackenzie Bright, 10, and Emmett Bright, 5, of Saugus are both thrilled to have a baby cousin, as are Manessa’s niece and nephew, Skylar LaRose, 4, and Nolan LaRose, 18 months.
Expanding winners’ list
Matthias Philip Ogren joins this ever-expanding list of winners in the Villager’s First Baby contest: Karley Kathleen Murphy, born Feb. 3, 2015 at 10:28 a.m.; Henry Joseph Morton, born Jan. 4, 2014 at 2:14 p.m.; Elizabeth Lee Riester, born Jan. 1, 2013 at 9:22 a.m.; Sydney Tate Weyler, born Jan. 5, 2012 at 7:12 a.m.; Sebastian Reardon Garcia, born Jan. 3, 2011 at 11:42 a.m.; Amelia Sophia Xavier, born Jan. 4, 2010 at 6:49 a.m.; Mia Shawn Daley, born Jan. 5, 2009 at 3 p.m.; and Rocco Max Scenna, born Jan. 3, 2008 at 4:02 a.m.
Extensive prize package
The local businesses which donated several hundred dollars worth of prizes to welcome baby and pamper mom are: Photography by Corinna – free photo session and one 8×10 ($195 value); Village Pharmacy – gift basket; The Savings Bank, Lynnfield branch – $25 savings account; Wakefield Co-op Bank, Lynnfield Branch – $25 savings account for baby;
Also, Baubles Fine Jewelry – $25 gift certificate for mom; The Farm Land, Wakefield – $50 gift certificate; and Lynnfield Villager – one year gift subscription or extension of subscription for the parents.