1. 'I just want you to know now,' I tell Alec as we close that garden gate, 'that I will not buy anything for you in town. No icecream, no sweets, no toys, no books, no comics. So don't bother to ask me.'
'What about comic books?' he asks -- I think genuinely innocent.
'I am not buying you anything.'
2. I used to tell people that married life was better for me than single life because the highs and the lows were less high and less low. Having children has shaken things up again. It took two tantrums to get out of the house, but Alec is now feeding the imaginary hippopotamus that lives under the old bowling green and Bettany has just discovered dandelion clocks.
3. There is quarter of an hour until Nick gets home and I am ready to sink into a sulky corner of the sofa with my Kindle. Instead I make some nachos, open a bottle of wine and open the back door. I am glad I did -- we get about quarter of an hour in the twilight garden before Bettany wakes up.