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Ola and James Jordan reveal hellish plane journey with toddler Ella - exclusive

The HELLO! columnists went on holiday to Abu Dhabi

ola jordan
Sophie Hamilton
Parenting Editor
1 April 2022
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HELLO!'s parenting columnists James and Ola Jordan are back from their relaxing holiday in Abu Dhabi with their two-year-old daughter Ella and James' mum – and the couple have quite the story to tell about their flight back.

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The family had a wonderful break away together but as they exclusively tell us below, a hyper toddler and fighting passengers on a plane do not a peaceful flight make!

WATCH: Cute Ella Jordan on holiday and her joy at arriving home

Ola reveals: "It was so nice to be away and spend time with Ella every day, and with James' mum. But on the last two days, Ella was saying, 'Mummy home'. She wanted to come back.

"Today she's been on all her toys at home… her bike, scooter, rocking horse, trampoline, she's pushed her pram around," adds James.

So what did go on during their flight? Find out below…

The Jordans' tough plane journey

James: We arrived back home at 10pm last night, which would have been 2am in Abu Dhabi time so we were fighting to keep Ella up. She wasn't tired at all on the journey, and then one hour before we landed she decides she's exhausted and wants to fall asleep.

Ola: She was actually quite hyper on the plane, I've got to say. It was quite hard work.

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Ella boards the plane!

James: When we went on the night flight before, she fell asleep.

Ola: And last time coming back from holiday she was better, but this time she was so hyper, jumping on the seat, looking back at everyone.

James: She wanted to walk up and down the aisle, which we didn't let her do.

Ola: She was looking in at everyone and I was like, 'Ella, just leave people alone!' Then there were two guys fighting on the plane near us!

James: Yeah, one in front of me and one to the side. I told them both in not so many words to calm the **** down.

There were a lot of children on the plane and the person on my left, his little boy who was about three years old and kicked the back of the seat – which kids are going to do. The dad turns around to the other dad and says, 'You tell your kid to stop kicking the seat'. Then he said, 'He can do what he wants to do'. He was defending his child.

Then they started arguing and I didn't think anything of it. I thought I'd just leave it. But about two hours later it happened again and I said, 'Both of you, just pack it in now'.

The guy directly in front of me said, 'Oh, what's it got to do with you?' I said, 'Just turn around! His little boy is three years old mate. What do you expect him to do?'

Ola: You can't expect a small child to sit there quietly for a seven-hour flight. It's not going to happen is it?


Ella straps in for the flight

James: I did say to Ola, 'At what age can we put the kids in economy and we go business?!' (laughs)

HELLO!: So how did you keep Ella busy on the plane?

James: Oh, we tried everything. She did watch the movie Encanto. She actually controlled the TV herself. I don't know how she did it.

She can also count to 13, randomly. She's quite smart. I don't know where she gets it from – it's definitely not us.

Ola: It's from me.

James: She was colouring in the other day and we've never ever told her about shapes. She was colouring in a triangle and she suddenly goes, 'Daddy, triangle!' I went, 'Ola, did you tell her that was a triangle?' and she went, 'No'.

She's also trying to bite things at the moment. I don't know if her teeth are hurting her again. When she gets angry she starts to bite. It's a bit weird.

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James' health problem

James: Oh, and I've got shingles. It's bloody painful. Apparently, it sits dormant and then it can be something to do with your immune system.

Hopefully, Ella doesn't catch chickenpox from me now. I didn't realise you can have a vaccine for chickenpox now. The doctor said lots of people have it. Ella hasn't had it though.

I've got it down my right side and back. It came on about five days ago. Every now and then I'd tell Ola, 'It's quite painful you know' and she'd go, 'Oh here we go, it's all about James again! All about his pain…'

Ola: He talked about it all the time. It's just shingles, you're not dying. You'll be ok, you'll survive.

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James with Ella in Abu Dhabi

Mother's Day on holiday

 Ola: I had a lovely Mother's Day. I went to a spa there and had a massage, which was nice. My husband surprised me. But obviously, he did play golf four times, so…

James: I asked my mum if she'd prefer a spa treatment or I'd treat her to some golf and she chose the golf, so that's why we played golf. She loves her golf and she loves beating me!

HELLO!: Ola, have you played golf with James?

Ola: I have played golf, yes, and I'm actually quite good and if I'd kept it up I would have beaten him by now but obviously with the baby and everything I had to stop.

James: You're not that keen on it are you?

Ola: No, I'm not that keen on it.

James: She actually has a really good swing.

Looking for a nursery for Ella

James: We found a nursery for her to go to but they're fully booked for a few months.

Ola: It's hard to find the one which you trust with your child. You're looking for someone to take over and look after your little angel. It's hard.

HELLO!: What will you do with your time when she's at nursery?

James: Sleep. Or maybe go and play golf.

Ola: You know what, go to the gym James.

James: Ola's going to go to the gym!


Ella copied daddy exercising on holiday

Time to get fit!

James: After eating all that great food on holiday, we need to get back in shape.

I did this fitness class on holiday where I had to stand on a floating board in the pool. It was hard! I did have a broken board in my defence. Every time I moved on it, it would fold in the middle. I don't know if it's because I'm 100 kilos and mine kept sinking…

We've been asked to do a few dancing shows in the summer so we need to get fit. We can't be two Teletubbies dancing around. It's harder as you get older as well.

Ola: And you're enjoying your home life more. Life is different. We're not on the go anymore. Now we're home, we're relaxed, we have meals together…

James: Right now we're fatty boom booms and we need to get straight in that gym. Ola goes downstairs with a chocolate éclair in her mouth and just looks at the gym! (laughs)

Ola: I do not!!!

We'll be a tag team, one looks after Ella, the other goes to the gym.

Ella's sleeping habits

James: We've got a really good photo of last night.

Ola: Ella went to sleep in her own bed and then 4am I remember going, 'Oh my gosh, she hasn't woken up yet!' because I'm not used to that.

James: At 4am I woke you up.

Ola: No you didn't! It was me because I took the picture! Anyway, I woke up, looked at the baby monitor and saw that she'd fallen off her bed. Just beside her bed, I've put big covers so when she rolls down she rolls onto that. She was on the cover. I said to leave her there because if I walk into her room and move her, she'll wake up.

An hour later she woke up screaming and James went to get her.

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Ella on the baby monitor before she fell out of bed

HELLO!: So she slept in her bed until 5am? That's pretty good for Ella…

Ola: Yeah but it might be just because of the time change. She was tired.

James: We'll see how it goes the next week. Ella hears our chat and goes and gets into her bed

Ola: She's gone and got into bed!

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Ella after she fell on the floor

James' tribute to Tom Parker

The Wanted band member Tom Parker sadly passed away this week, following a battle with a grade 4 glioblastoma brain tumour. James was friends with Tom and shares his tribute below…

View post on Instagram

James: I had the pleasure of meeting Tom several times. I think the first time I met him was after I came out of Big Brother and we went and did a show together, which he won. He was such a lovely guy. We stayed in contact ever since.

To hear about his passing and leaving behind two young children, he was such a young guy, only 33 years old. One of my best friends died from the same disease when he was 32 and it's extremely sad.

I'm absolutely gutted for him and it brings back a lot of memories about my dad because he died from the same disease.

His diagnosis and story reminded me of my dad - how strong Tom was and how he was fighting it and didn’t give up. He lived every day as if it was his last and was so positive - the same as my father up until the day he died, he was always very positive about it.

Tom was an amazing role model for anyone, young and old. The way he dealt with his diagnosis, it's a horrible, cruel disease. I saw what it did to my dad. Myself and Ola send our love to his family and we're thinking about them. May he rest in peace.

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