<Paula> 31 March 2008 - Well the month of March has flown by. The month started while we were in Australia and after our return it took Ella a little while to settle back to life at home with just me and not other people to play with all day. She has continued to grow and learn new skills, she is as cute as ever.

We all went camping over the Easter weekend with some friends. Ella had her first experience of the beach, sand and surf. She was curious about the sand, definitely not about the surf. Chris was standing in the water with it around his ankles holding her and when a wave came in she pulled her legs up. She so doesn't like cold water! The experience has had such a profound impact on her that now that we are home getting in to the bath is not as easy as it used to be. She now, instead of trusting daddy, pulls her legs up as the water comes near, if you hold her there she will slowly lower one leg to test the water first with her toes. If it passes the toe temperature test she will put both her legs in the water. We also went kayaking again with her. She loved it! She was very curious about everything around her. We camped at a beautiful place and our tent was pitched in an amazing spot. This was our first camping trip since we got back from Australia and it was great. Ella had a great time, there was always someone to smile at and talk to, no time for sleeping or eating. Finally on our last day there she collapsed and slept. Considering the minimal sleep she had, she was very well behaved. Some photos:

These first three photos are of the view from the campsite.


Early morning on the beach. Hard to believe but it is taken from right outside the tent.

Kayaking with Ella.

She wouldn't look up for the camera, had to keep an eye on those waves.

Out of the water now, much better.

Due to the sad fact that we have no grass at home this is one of the first times that Ella has explored grass.

When we got back from camping I was thrilled to hear a phone message from my cousin Merry, who happened to be in Auckland, just down the road actually. It was great catching up. Ella gets a little bored with just me at home during the week so she was thrilled that we were visiting with people.

Another major thing happened, apart from Ella catching up on her sleep and food intake from her first camping trip, Chris and I attended the first concert in Duran Duran's 2008 World Tour. I was so thrilled, for more than one reason. Firstly we went out, something we haven't done in a while (Chris's Mum was great and came around to look after Ella). Secondly, it was Duran Duran! It has been along time since I was 14 and had them plastered all over my wall, and they are definitely aging, but the music was great, and there is something about a live performance that is just so much better than a CD. It was a really good night, a lot of fun. They had a couple of technical hitches and stopped two of the songs completely to restart them! I was stunned that professionals at this level would have those kind of problems. They handled it really well, joking around with the audience while their technical staff got it together. It was the first time that I have seen them live and probably the last time. I don't know how to describe it other than it was just a really good night. I don't have any photos of the night to share with you though.

Ella turned 6 months old on the 27th, which is a great milestone. She is doing so well, she is a healthy 6 month old. I also have to mark the night of the 28th, it was the first night in six months that we have not had to get up to her during the night. Six months of sleep deprivation is starting to take it's toll on us and we are just hoping that it becomes the norm as opposed to the exception.

We are enjoying every day we have, and we look forward to what the next month brings our way.

left: One morning I came out to discover both Ella and Chris fast asleep, it had been a rough night.
above: playing peek-a-boo.

It was great to spend some time with Merry.