Note: Once again, life gets ahead of blogging, and this post which was meant to appear on Tuesday, only appears now. Oh well, what can you do? :P

And I’m back. Thanks to all of the public holidays plus three days’ leave, I have technically been away from work for 11 days now, having last been there back on the 22 April! Having not taken a holiday break last December, I was pretty much desperately in need of this little downtime, but unfortunately as any single parent with a baby will tell you, there really is no such thing as proper rest and relaxation if you have one of those little critters in your care! :)

Lack of funds and of course the fact that Chantelle was working meant that I didn’t go away for my leave period, and instead found myself home-based for the entire holiday, which isn’t all that bad I guess – if you don’t mind a little hard work. Yup, once again those sleeves got rolled up and I found myself toiling away for a considerable number of hours around the yard, sawing down poles, pulling up brick borders, laying down cement slabs, doing gardening, cleaning up the yard and yes, even doing a little bricklaying as well.

But it wasn’t all hard work, all the time mind you.

Pringle Bay, and a beautiful shot of Chantelle holding the cutest baby in the world!

On the Saturday of the Easter weekend Chantelle, Jessica and I went out for our first real outing together, taking the car for a spin along the always scenic coastal road towards Betty’s Bay, on what turned out to be a beautiful sunny day. We trundled about Pringle Bay, enjoyed lunch, changed nappies, drove through Betty’s Bay and in general just enjoyed a pleasant afternoon together. The evening brought with it another first, with us taking Jessica along with us to a restaurant for the first time, the family friendly Gordon’s Bay Sunset Spur. Armed with a milk bottle (always at the ready), the evening went quite well actually, though we didn’t break any records for length of stay come to think of it! :)

The Monday following the gluttonous, copious Easter egg devouring of the Sunday was kicked off with an enjoyable visit from Zania and Dean with Jessica and myself, before Chantelle arrived back from work and the Montgomery clan rolled in to join us for a late afternoon braai. As it turned out, my folks popped in for a visit on their way back from their little weekend away, and ended up staying for the delicious meat-fest as well!

Apart from the outside hard labour, over the course of the week I also found myself preparing a fair amount of blog content for scheduling purposes, taking in some manga and anime for a change, tinkering around with a new website or two, exploring the mini-games on my phone (which I’ve had for well over a year by now) for the very first time, visiting the mall alone with Jessica (always an adventure), and dusting off the XBOX and making an attempt at the thoroughly enjoyable Spider-man: Shattered Dimensions.

The driveway was just one of the many outside jobs I chose to tackle over my break...

Thursday my actions were a little more curtailed as it was time for Jessie’s next big expensive (thank you Medical Aid) Synergist injection, which Chantelle and I handled together. It has been some time since I was last at Kuilsriver Medi-Clinic following Jessica’s release, so it was quite a strange feeling to be back in what had become such a familiar place over those early days. Anyway, the injection went of well, but shame, these things really cause little Jessica quite a lot of pain and anguish!

Friday the 29th of April was of course the big Royal Wedding, but seeing as neither Chantelle nor I am even remotely interested in it, we made use of the fact that it was Chantelle’s day off to make a trip through to Bellville with Jessica, strip our two moms away from their televisions and enjoy a lunch and coffee meeting at Mugg & Bean Tygervalley, after which we sent Jessica home with mom-in-law so that wifey and I could do some shopping (which wasn’t very successful).

Saturday evening brought a nice change of pace for me though, with me abandoning young Jessica to a working wife and making the trip through to Bellville where I joined Terrance and the boys (and girls) for an evening of braaing, board games and NBA Jam.

And that wraps it up in terms of what I guess one could call highlights of the eleven days away from work. Nothing outrageous or energetic, true, but like I mentioned at the start, being at home with a five month old baby all on your own is no laughing or easy matter. Far, far more work than what I expected, and to be honest I’m quite glad to be back in the office – after all that baby work, I need a holiday to recover from my holiday! :)

Though, the tongue in cheek now said, I wouldn’t have missed out on it for the world. I will probably never get the opportunity to spend this much quality alone time with my baby girl, a little furry cub in the care of her big lion daddy, for a very long time, and for that reason alone I eagerly grabbed it with both hands and enjoyed every second of it!

Safe and sound on Daddy's chest, happily watching Jackie Chan. The indoctrination begins early! :)

When she wasn’t crying of course! ;)