Lately, despite the glorious sunshine that's been making the world pause and smile, James and I have been busy as clockwork cogs. We've been making our rotations mechanically in our own little spheres, our lives touching fleetingly once a cycle, before spiralling off onto their own courses again.
There have been late nights and work deadlines, visits from family and epic trips to see friends, wall-painting after work and house cleaning before breakfast, the stress of possible redundancies for James and the pressure of an article to write for me, a sickness bug that struck us all and then lingered cruelly on John, and the misery of an approaching week with Daddy far away.
And throughout it all I've felt cheated. I've looked through the window at the blossoming world outside and felt my face fold into a petulant pout because the rest of the world was on holiday whilst our work was far from done. I've gazed longingly at the promise of an Easter break and groaned in frustration that ours has been booked up with busyness and eaten up with work.
And so when one free day dawned, in between unpacking from a Duke of Edinburgh expedition and re-packing for a long weekend in Yorkshire, we grabbed it with both hands.
We filled our brand new paddling pool with water and set it beneath the blossoming boughs of the apple trees where dappled sunshine skipped across its surface and baby toes could dip and splash to their heart's content.
And there in the early summer sunshine we splashed and laughed, watched and played. We basked in the glory of summer and thrilled at the sound of John's laughs. We dipped our own toes into the cool water and lay on the warm grass watching pastel petals flutter in the blue skies above.
And by the time we came back indoors to pack for the weekend away I felt certain that even if this was the only family time that we were to enjoy all Easter and the only sunshine that we were to enjoy all summer, I shouldn't feel cheated at all.