Thursday, 11 December 2014

A 10 Month Old Update!

TEN MONTHS!! Double Digits?! This is far too crazy to me! because double digits means we are only 2 short months away from a one year old, and it's just not possible that my baby is turning into a one year old sooo soon! 

No time for crying in the corner though, Ella thinks this whole getting older thing is just great!

and the love/hate relationship with Monkey has just become all love! She has learnt to 'give kissies' this month, Daddy and Momma get one before bed and then Daddy tells her to give Monkey a kiss too and Monkey gets three! He's definitely the favourite around here these days! 

Of course the biggest new trick learnt this month was crawling!! Hooray!

Only it proved slightly problematic for the photoshoot! She was either crawling away from the camera, or towards that lovely bunting which she was trying to destroy!

What a little monkey!

and for my final trick - ta da, love those jazz hands, and cheeky smile!

At the beginning of the month we had attempts at trying to get things, in attempting to reach out and push herself forwards she actually ended up pushing herself backwards and further away from the object she wanted so much! Cue lots of ending up under sofas...

She then decided rolling was the way to go! Who need to crawl, everything was achievable with a sideways roll...only when it wasn't, because sometimes the things she wanted were in front and not to the side!

Daddy was her biggest encouragment, continually setting out little tasks for her to try and reach her favourite toys/most desired objects like the keys/remote and mobile phones! Only that didn't end so well when she misplaced our house keys and so I couldn't leave the house for a whole day until they turned up in the Christmas gift wrapping bag!

Oh yeah increased mobility has brought a sudden desire for searching everything! handbags, bookshelves, laundry baskets...and even bins! but really she's never happier than when she gets her hand on paper, and when she can rip it apart! She's like the dog we don't have, when I find half chewed bits of post it's Ella! 

So her first official crawl was on Saturday December 6th, when I was in the shower! but she was happy to repeat it for me when I got out! I think she managed two in a row in total and they were pretty shaky but we still thought they were pretty great!

Fast forward a few days, and she was managing to get around a bit speedier...

and these days there's no stopping her! unless you're a big sofa cushion in front of the Christmas tree that she hasn't worked out she can just go round the side of yet!!

We have also had 3 NIGHTS in the past month when she has slept through the night, this is the first time this has ever happened in our household so it's pretty exciting times! We're hoping that number will keep rising too!

I know this picture is so dark, but I had to snap it when I went in to peek on her one night before bed, could she look any more relaxed! The hands behind head was a favourite sleeping position....until she learnt to crawl and now we find her in all kinds of crazy positions in her cot at night time! The first night when we put her down to sleep after she realised she was now able to move around in her cot and was not restricted to lying down (despite being in a baby sleeping bag!) she cried for a whole 45 minutes, and we'd pop in and out to lay her back down again and find her shaking the bars of the cot with tears sobbing down her cheeks like why are you people leaving me here! Eventually we heard silence on the monitor and she'd dropped off to sleep, I said to Byron let's peek in and see what position she eventually fell asleep in - well we went in to find her sitting upright, with monkey on her lap, fast asleep! It was hilarious!

In other news this month, she is still LOVING birds like they are the greatest thing ever!

We bought some bird seed and put it in the planter outside, and she loves to watch the birds all flock in!

We also found a duck pond in the next village which was equally as exciting! There were literally no ducks in sight when we arrived and within 20 seconds of dishing out bread we were mobbed! but Ella was loving it!

She got given a free Chupa Chup at the Indian take away one night! I don't think the guy behind the counter knew babies don't eat lollipops! Anyway she happily licked away, wrapper on, for a good 20 minutes and thought she'd won the prize! 

The rest of the month was spent in the great outdoors! soaking up this amazingly mild weather we've been having!

She is turning into a great little hiking companion, but to be fair she doesn't really have a choice in the matter at this point!

We even got her looking the part with a little Regatta hat and everything!

We are blessed to live in some really beautiful surroundings!

and of course the remainder of the month was all about the Christmas festivities!

We introduced Ella to our tradition of picking out a real tree - she thought it was just as exciting as me! which pleased me greatly!

and she also was just as mesmerised with the lights as I was hoping she would be! I can't wait to take her down south for the real deal later this month!

She joined in our family tree decorating, and by joined in I mean she slobbered over half of all the decorations on there! but whilst listening to rocking around the Christmas tree so all was well!

This past weekend we hiked to some waterfalls!

and got to go check out the Christmas festivities at Betws-y-Coed and ride the mini train!

I wish you could have seen Ella jigging the whole way around the track, she was loving it!!

and let's finish with some giggles with Daddy!

She's still the happiest baby in town! I can't wait to see what she makes of Father Christmas and the rest of the festive fun December brings!!

Monday, 1 December 2014

Me & Mine: November & A Trip to Beautiful Bodnant

I've been wanting to join in with Me & Mine for a while now, it's a monthly portrait challenge where you take a photo of your family each month and blog about it! You would think that we would have no shortage of photos to contribute! but I realised they are either always of Ella and I or Ella and her Daddy! and we rarely get ones of the three of us!

So we wasted no time in enlisting Granny's help when she came to stay with us at the start of the month! and we took a day out to Bodnant Garden on a beautiful crisp autumn morning with a bright blue sky, it was the most spectacular day to be visiting the most spectacular gardens!

We started our day in the Welsh Food Centre, and had some delicious lunch at their little cafe there.

Ella got reacquainted with Granny 'oh yeah, I remember you now, the lady who always has awesome beads and necklaces'! 

This was the view from where we had lunch...

and the view as we arrived at Bodnant!

The last time we lived here, I visited Bodnant twice but both times it was summer and so I wasn't really sure what to expect from Bodnant in November.  

I needn't have worried! It certainly didn't disappoint! and was just as magical in Autumn as it had been in summer.  In fact I was especially excited, because I had seriously been missing all the vibrant reds and oranges that we got to experience in Vancouver's autumn and so I was delighted when the first thing I saw were these Maples bursting with colour! 

We also discovered an Arbutus tree, which again was pretty special! We fell in love with these trees in Canada, especially my mom when we came across one in Victoria.

So we had to pose with the Arbutus for old times sake!

If you've never come across an Arbutus tree before, their bark peels away to reveal a very reddish bark underneath, and we just kind of love them! 

A little throwback to our beloved time in Vancouver, there was also an Arbutus street in Vancouver too which had the most beautiful mansions all along it!!

Be prepared for a picture overload, there was just too much beauty not to share it all! 

See what I mean about the gardens being magical?!

and all the colours are so vivid!

and our forester daddy was loving the trees!!

and I was loving all the photo ops! 

Even though these hydrangeas were dying off and on the way out I still wanted a shot of these! I loved the turquoise hues mixing with the brown! 

The glowing sunlight created even more beauty as it reflected of all the trees!

and we came to this peaceful spot by the waterfall!

Love this pic of my mom looking on! She was meant to be looking at the camera too, classic mom! 

and Ella snuggled in and shared some giggles with me.  She is a nature lover like her daddy, that's for sure, and there's nothing better she loves than to be out walking amongst the trees! 

Pretty reflections

We also loved these Redwoods! Byron, because of his love for trees, and me for my love of California and the memories they bring back of our road trip! 

We also came across lots of plants and flowers we'd never even seen before! and my mom is a flower expert so that was unexpected! 

We loved these pink little petals with orange buds! So colourful and fun! 

and my purple loving self loved these leaves...

and teeny tiny purple berries!

This tree was bursting with colour!

and we left this gorgeous view behind us on the way out! 

Bodnant, you're our fave!