James and Ola Jordan are loving how much little Ella is learning. Now nearly at four months, their baby girl is laughing away at her parents' antics, and is making as much noise as she possibly can with her new favourite toy, a rattle. "Oh, she's learned how to use the rattle now," James says, having filmed a clip of Ella playing with it exclusively for HELLO!'s Strictly Parenting column. "It's quite funny because she really whacks it everywhere."
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"She has started to grab it herself too," Ola adds. "She reaches out for it when she's on her belly. When we put it in her hand she knows she's making plenty of noise. When James gives it to her, she will whack it against the table, smashing the table really hard, because it made all the more noise."
WATCH: Baby Ella plays with her favourite toy in sweet new video
Joking about the state of their dining table, James interjects: "Normally I would mind someone hitting my table, but I found it funny. Also I have one of these tables that you can't scratch so that puts my mind at ease a bit!"
Speaking about Ella's other favourite objects, Ola says: "She doesn't have a go-to snuggly toy but she does have a little yellow bird which she loves, and when you shake it, it makes noises and the wings flap. Whenever you put it in front of her, she smiles. I would actually say the rattle is her favourite now. We bought her this little elephant which flaps its ears and it's really cute, but she's not interested in it. We love it, but she's not really into it!"
Baby Ella has started to learn a lot more about herself
"But she's started to grab things," James explains. "She's pulling Ola's hair and putting her hands in your mouth. If you put your face close to hers, she'll grab it!"
Speaking about Ella's newfound love of noisy toys, James and Ola are well aware that they will probably be getting plenty of loud gifts from friends and family in the future. "I've already told my parents, 'I don't want any noisy presents!'" James jokes. "I know I won't get away with it, I think they're looking forward to buying really noisy stuff!"
READ: James Jordan reveals parenting struggle with wife Ola in cute video
James also gave an update on his dad, Allan, who is still very ill after a series of hospital stays earlier in the year, and is going back into hospital for further treatment. "Dad is back in hospital at the moment," James explains. "But he is just a different breed to anyone else. I would be a mess, but he's just a very strong man. He joked, 'Just so you know if it's not good news, I'm going to take up drinking and smoking.' [...] I'm still positive, and we're not sure what's going on yet."
James with his baby girl Ella, who is nearly four months old
The pair have been focusing their energy on Ella, and proudly open up about how much more she is beginning to understand. "When she's hungry, she'll know when we're in a corner, that's where we do her milk. She knows if you're there she's getting her milk," James explains. Ola adds that on another occasion, Ella noticed when James was missing from the house, saying: "One day James had gone out and I was here on my own, and she was looking into the kitchen as if she was looking for someone in there, so I think she was looking for James."
James jokes: "She was probably looking for me to make milk, 'Where's that guy who makes my food?'"
Much like her dancing professional parents, it looks like Ella is eager to get moving, despite still being much too little to start crawling. "She's turning on her belly all the time," James says. "She loves being on her belly now. We put her on a bigger mat where she can turn around, and she'll be on her belly in seconds. You can tell she's trying to move, but she's going nowhere! I think babies start crawling at seven months and she's only four, but you can she's getting frustrated that she can't move."
Ella is eager to start crawling
Although Ella is happy and healthy, James admits that he is concerned about a lingering rash that hasn't gone away after several weeks, saying: "She's still got this rash on her body, and it's making little spots now as well. I'm worried about it, Ola's not."
"I'm not worried yet," Ola replies.
He continues: "The GP says it's fine because babies get rashes, so as long as she doesn't have a temperature she's okay. But I'm one of these people who just wants to know what it is. But no one can tell me what it is!"
READ: James Jordan reveals 'worry' for baby Ella's health
Now that Ella is getting a little more aware of her surroundings, the couple expressed their disappointment that they are unable to take her to any of the usual classes or experiences that would usually be available pre-lockdown.
Ella has yet to meet any other babies due to lockdown
"I was holding Ella when a segment about triplets being born in lockdown came on TV. I pointed them out to her and that was the first time I thought to myself, 'Oh, she hasn't actually met any babies,'" James says.
"I haven't thought about how she's going to meet other children yet to be honest," Ola adds. "When I was pregnant I did think, there's a lot of sensory classes and things to take your baby to, but I don't know when I'll be able to do with her at the moment! I'd like her to go to swimming classes too, which she can't yet."
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James says: "It is a shame. Everyone's going through their own stuff at the moment, but to have a baby at this time, when you can't take them to do these sort of things. She's getting to the age you'd think it'd be nice to do classes and let her meet other people, but you can't at the moment. She's at home with just the two of us, she's probably going to find it very strange."