1. Poor Alec is sick, so we keep him off school. It means a lot to me that we can do this without worrying about work commitments.
2. It's fun to leave a couple of cakes on a friend's doorstep.
3. To see that I am approaching the last pages of the journal that I use for gaming notes. It makes the sense of time passing tangible, and helps me remember the sociable times we've had playing together.
1. I spot a personal trainer working with a mother who has a pram parked off to one side.
2. The children have picked out a maple and pecan drop scone from the new bakery. Nick brings it up on a plate with a cup of tea and it is delicious.
3. Often dress-up days at school are just stressful with tantrums and last-minute costume changes. But this evening the children talk about what they want to wear tomorrow and help me find it and name it.
1. As I am coming home from my walk I fall in with a neighbour. We end up discussing roleplaying games, and by the time I step through our door I'm holding a brand new game that he'd like me to take a look at.
2. Half listening to Bettany chuntering away to herself in the bath. She making a pretend YouTube video about potions.
3. Alec folds his improbably long body on to my lap for a cuddle before bed.
1. Bettany, as usual, claims that she didn't like the film we sat her in front of while she recovers from a bug. Not one of the songs, and none of the characters met her approval. But later I heard a snatch of a tune muttered under her breath.
2. The clock on the station tower tells me that I've timed it right so there is no need to hurry up the hill.
3. Nick got the call earlier today that he can have his first dose of vaccine. When he returns at supper time to say all done, he's bought parcels from the new cheese shop to celebrate.
1. Showing Bettany a few of the things growing in the garden, including the vigorous crop of lambs lettuce growing around her fairy house. Another fairy garden, a shallow pan, has filled with mossy humps and hummocks.
2. To sit with Alec chatting about the Usborne Book of Ghosts, which was much prized when I was little, and has recently been reprinted.
3. We stumble across the story of Palmerston Island: an English sailor founded a dynasty that still lives there today. If you haven't tried the Radio Garden app, by the way, it's well worth your time. It allows you to navigate a world of radio stations on a globe map.
1. The way my sister's toddler asks for Alec and Bettany as soon as the call starts.
2. One of the steps in the archaelogy course Nick and I are doing is to try copying the shale pendant found at Starr Carr. I have a go at drilling a piece of slate using a flint. The moment I break through is remarkably satisfying.
3. We've gone for a slide-in-the-oven ready meal this evening, which means there is time to relax before supper.
1. The marvel of finding a sprouted acorn at the bottom of the compost heap. But also the beanstalks that have grown on the kitchen windowsill from hard dry beans.
2. Alec takes over reading our book when my voice gets tired. We end up discussing the best voices to use for the different characters.
3. Nick and I sit in bed marvelling over the stone age pendant found at Starr Carr. It seems like science fiction to experience an object remotely -- but that's the power of skilled observation and thoughtful analysis by expert archaeologists.
1. The first daffodil in my north-facing front garden has opened. I know there have been daffs in the supermarket for weeks, and they are all over other people's gardens -- but this one is my own.
2. Because we are breaking in the children's new shoes we walk to Nana's along the road. It's boring, but very quick, and it makes me appreciate our usual ramble through the woods.
3. The PTA is making a tiny surprise for each of our children on their first day back to school. I can't help out this time, so I didn't join in, but I can see the buzz on the WhatsApp group and I so much appreciate their energy and enthusiasm.
1. When I come downstairs Bettany makes me stand against the wall so she can measure my height for her maths worksheet.
2. Our friends send us a surprise Ocado delivery of olives, chocolate eggs and Champagne as lockdown loosens.
3. Listening to the finale of The Battersea Poltergeist on BBC Radio 4. I'm still in #teamonthefence. I find the storytelling around hauntings fascinating, much more so than the levitating girls and teleporting objects; and this series covered it really skillfully and ethically.
1. It is a very misty morning, so that the buildings across the car park are barely there. I tell Alec about the time when he was a very tiny boy and called me to look out of the window on a foggy morning because he did not understand what had happened to the world.
2. The sound of Nick's tread on the stairs -- he is bringing me coffee while I work.
3. To sit in bed doing a few tasks on an e-learning archaelogy course with Nick.
1. When the children go back to school I will miss the spontaneous cuddles.
2. A parcel of books arrives -- this time I've ordered things I actually want to read, rather than books I should be reading.
2b. The whole school is studying a picture-only book called Journey by Aaron Becker as part of World Book Day, and I ordered a copy. The children have only seen it on screen and Bettany in particular is very excited to have our own book.
3. To use a ship tracker to see Uncle Rob's progress towards home.
1. We passed a box of 'free to a good home' things on our walk. Bettany picked up a plastic toy that might be a tiki bar. She has been playing with it ever since, adding characters to it from our 'people' jar.
2. In the woods I steal away for a moment alone.
3. As we are crossing the road a friend drives past waving wildly.