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Another morning of awaking early as I was eager to finish the book I had been reading for the past two weeks. I was taking my time reaching the end as I wanted my time with the story and the characters to last as long as possible. Two hours later, the end had been reached but a part of me wished the story would continue for just a while longer.

The morning continued as I got out of bed and prepared for the day ahead. No work today but there was a potluck for my team so I decided to go and was able to take the kids along. Seeing how this would not be the most exciting outing for a child, I told them there would be a surprise for them after our trip to work.

 As I cut the triple chocolate brownies into bite-sized pieces and placed them on a plate, I decided that we had time for a fun breakfast of the leftover brownie pieces we would not be taking with us. The girls drank milk. Sage had chamomile tea whilst I made myself a cup of Scottish black breakfast tea.

The children had seen a few photos that I have sent from the outside of my work but they were impressed when they had seen it in person. I was also impressed the first time I had seen it.

‘This is very nice’, one of the children stated as we walked down the parking garage stairs and across the courtyard to the tall building where I work. Once on the fifth floor, the top of the building, they said it was the nicest office they had ever seen though I am certain they have not seen too many office buildings.

‘This looks like Office Space’, exclaimed Saffron.

As we walked around, I tried to locate the place where we could place our food. Along the way, I came across various colleagues, one of whom stated that Cinnamon looked exactly like me. A ‘mini-me’, as she put it. My other colleague asked Sage if he was excited about school. ‘No’ was his simple answer. He smiled as she told him he looked handsome and thanked her.

The three were excited but respectful of having to remain as quiet as possible during the work hours. They somehow coerced my Scottish colleague to give them markers to draw on my white board by my desk. He looked at me for approval as if unsure if he should and what would be the consequences if he did. They had some fun leaving me various notes which gave life to my otherwise plain surroundings. At some point, I will need to decorate a bit.

‘I want a cat’ was one of the last notes left on the board by Cinnamon. Along with a drawing of a tea cup by Saffron which was just above my box of Tazo Awake Tea. Sage mentioned something about loving me and making sure I love cats and elephants.

The children ended up eating the chips with guacamole and some Oreos. The younger two stated they did not like hamburgers whilst the oldest said she was not too hungry for a hamburger. Despite the potluck having been in the middle of the workday and not being able to socialise as one would normally get to in an otherwise non-work setting, I was glad to have shown the children where I spend most of my days.

As we walked outside the cold air-conditioned building and into the warm and pleasant summer sun, Sage decided to run all around the green lawn in front of the building. The one had been eyeing from up above earlier as he stood at the edge of the floor-to-ceiling windows.


‘What is our surprise’, asked Saffron, eager to go somewhere else.

‘You’ll see’, I replied.

I then drove them a short distance to The Domain and was fortunate to find a parking spot alongside the shops. The outdoor shopping area had expanded in recent years and we spent an hour or so walking around the various shops.

Lush, the bath bomb shop, was the first stop as we had parked the car directly across from it. Nordstrom was next and then Starbucks where Saffron was able to cross off one more item from her summer bucket list. Trying the ‘pink drink’ from Starbucks. She ended up liking it. Cinnamon bought a mini vanilla scone. The last time I remembered being at a Starbucks with the children was many years ago when they were still so little.

Our last stop was the Amazon bookstore where I bought Saffron a small Pusheen colouring book that she really wanted. Cinnamon chose ‘Bummer in the Summer’, a book from a children’s series. Sage did not find anything to his liking.

Even though I was not able to take the children anywhere fun this summer, I was glad to have taken at least a few days off from work to spend a little time with them.