I often don't realise the level of influence I have over my children. On a quiet afternoon this week, Olivia pottered into the kitchen with her arms full of fabric scraps and said in her typically quiet way, "I thought I'd make some bunting for my room - can you show me how?"
On the other hand, when Moss Stitch and I took all our children on a longish walk in Epping Forest a few days later, we had to bribe them into participating with moderate enthusiasm and not moaning, by lugging along heavy bags full of chocolate biscuits and flasks of mocha coffee in order to keep them stoked up with sugar and caffeine at all times.
My love of long walks and being in amongst the trees has clearly not had as much influence on them as my love of fabric and cake.
When we got back home, I said to Olivia, "You know, in years to come I bet you take your children on walks like that." She looked me straight in the eye and replied, "I would never be so cruel."