1a. It's getting too bright and hot in the back garden. I move us round to the front where it is cool and shaded. Alec sits in his bouncy chair, his toys quietly forgotten, watching while I weed the gravel.
1. "When Hugh was a baby, he had this yellow toy duck, and it made him so excited we had to take it away from him." I think of this and feel better when Alec gets wound up about scrunchy cellophane toys.
2. The second I put Alec down on the rug, Anna's girls start lavishing him with attention. I want to protect my baby from so much stimulation; but I can see he's unafraid, and it's hard to tell people to stop admiring him! At one point I turned round and they were passing him backwards and forwards between them. He wore a blissed out smile, as if he had been waiting his whole life for girls of six and eight to play with him.
3. We come home tired and sticky and sunned. The changing bag is stuffed with dirty laundry, the pram is full of beech leaf casings, and Alec has a smudge on his baby grow. He looks exactly like someone who has spent a happy afternoon in the park.