Keeping a Promise

Winston Salem, North Carolina
April 13, 2016 5:50am CST
Not long after we moved to this area we took advantage of proximity and my husbands hotel reward points and spent three days and two nights in Washington DC. Hours were spent in the National Air and Space Museum, the Museum of Natural History and half a dozen or so other museums. We toured the Capitol and National Archives and walked many, many miles as we walked from one end of the National Mall to the other, multiple times. We popped into the National Gallery to check out the artwork, but because of time constraints and lack of interest on the part of the teenage sons we were only able to spend an hour or so among the collections. Our artist daughter was deeply disappointed, but was pacified with the promise that before she graduated from high school we would make another trip to DC and would devote a larger block of time to exploring the art exhibits. That was an easy promise to make. The child in question was in the eighth grade at time and planning a trip sometime in the next four years wasn’t expected to be difficult. For the past two years we have been trying to plan a family trip back to Washington DC. It has proven to be impossible. School and activity calendars are limiting, as are work and volunteer schedules. Last autumn we finally gave up trying to plan a family trip and my daughter and I started planning a trip for just the two of us. Twice dates were scheduled and cancelled because of family emergencies. Graduation is approaching rapidly so fulfilling the promise has become a top priority. Early next week the daughter and I will be boarding a train and making the trek to the nation’s capital. Two nights are booked in a hotel just a couple of blocks from the National Mall, and the plan is to spend two days visiting the sites my daughter wants to see. Knowing her, I imagine most of that time will be spent in the National Gallery. I’m glad I promised her we would make the trip. I’m not sure we would have been able to work things out. I don’t make a lot of promises to my kids, but I try to do whatever it takes to keep the ones I do make.
17 people like this
16 responses
@LadyDuck (126900)
• Switzerland
13 Apr 16
I remember that my father always did everything he could to keep a promise. I know that, working, it's not always easy to schedule everything. I hope you can make your trip, have fun.
2 people like this
• Winston Salem, North Carolina
13 Apr 16
The hotel is booked and the train tickets are purchased and we're both just a bit excited about this trip!
2 people like this
@LadyDuck (126900)
• Switzerland
13 Apr 16
@Platespinner Everything is ready, I am sure you are very excited. Wonderful!
1 person likes this
@jaboUK (51564)
• United Kingdom
13 Apr 16
I'm glad that you are able to keep your promise and I'm sure that you and she will have a great time together.
2 people like this
• Winston Salem, North Carolina
13 Apr 16
We're both looking forward to it!
2 people like this
@Tampa_girl7 (22280)
• United States
13 Apr 16
I hope you have an enjoyable time there. I would love the museums.
2 people like this
• Winston Salem, North Carolina
13 Apr 16
We could easily spend a week there and not see all the museums that interest us. We'll do what we can between when we arrive on Monday morning and when we have to depart again on Wednesday.
@Juliaacv (24646)
• Canada
13 Apr 16
I can sympathize with you, its hard to pan something when our kids are teenagers and have a part time job and a full time social life outside of our family unit. Those years we took advantage of day trips when we were all available, and we made some great memories.
2 people like this
• Winston Salem, North Carolina
13 Apr 16
We still manage to pull off the occasional impromptu day trip--but weekend trips are getting harder and harder, and vacations are even worse. For the first time ever we are planning a major family vacation knowing that one of the kids won't be able to go with us.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48089)
• Manchester, England
13 Apr 16
I do not mind a short stroll around a museum or gallery, but have never been interested enough to spend hours there.
1 person likes this
• Winston Salem, North Carolina
13 Apr 16
Doing the "museum shuffle" as I've dubbed it is hard on the feet, my daughter stands at work so she has much better endurance for that sort of thing, I suspect I'll be doing the bench hop tour and sitting as much as I can get away with. The museums are only open from 10 until 5, so in the hours before and the hours after we'll have lots of opportunity to walk around some of the various memorials.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48089)
• Manchester, England
13 Apr 16
@Platespinner 7 hours could prove to be quite an endurance feat.
1 person likes this
• Winston Salem, North Carolina
13 Apr 16
@Asylum That's why I think I will be bench hopping. If I remember correctly many of the galleries have at least one bench on which to take the load off of one's feet.
1 person likes this
@fishtiger58 (30610)
• Momence, Illinois
13 Apr 16
Aww you are a good mom. I hope you and your daughter have a great time together. You will get to devote your full attention to her and that's a wonderful thing. Have a most wonderful time.
1 person likes this
• Winston Salem, North Carolina
13 Apr 16
I'm looking forward to the trip as much as she is, I'm really glad we decided to take the train instead of driving, it has turned the entire trip into more of an adventure.
1 person likes this
@fishtiger58 (30610)
• Momence, Illinois
14 Apr 16
@Platespinner Trains can be really fun. Many years ago we flew to Oregon to visit my hubby's sister. Then we took a 40 hour train ride to southern Calif. for more family visits. The train was a blast. We had 4 meals and we had a sleeper car for the overnight part. My sons were like 12 and 13, they had a ball running around the train.
1 person likes this
• Winston Salem, North Carolina
14 Apr 16
@fishtiger58 I've traveled by train in the Netherlands and in Germany, I've done a bit in Canada, but have never used Amtrak yet. We're looking forward to the experience.
1 person likes this
@PainsOnSlate (19689)
• Canada
13 Apr 16
You are such a good mom. She will remember this trip for the rest of her life. I loved going and want to go again, maybe its time to take a trip to Washington again. Hubby wasn't with me the first time so I think he will enjoy it too. Have fun making memories.
1 person likes this
• Winston Salem, North Carolina
13 Apr 16
This will actually be my fifth visit, but it is a destination that never gets dull. There are so many different things to see there!
1 person likes this
• Canada
13 Apr 16
I don't remember going with my parents but its possible we did. @Platespinner When I lived in Kansas a friend who had never been east of Missouri went home (NY) with me and my daughter. we drove and made it a trip to remember, Washington, Civil war sites in Penn., NYC, Boston and Niagara Falls on our way home. We had a blast. My sister lived in DC so no hotel necessary, Best friend in Boston, Gettysburg on the way to DC and NYC was a train ride from my parents house.
1 person likes this
• Winston Salem, North Carolina
13 Apr 16
@PainsOnSlate I went when I was 13 on a youth group trip that also included a stop in Gettysburg and camping in Ithaca NY (my parents were along as chaperones), I was there again when I was 16 when we were passing through on our way to the Gulf Coast. 18 years ago my husband and I were visiting his aunt in Fredericksburg and took the metro into DC for the day (It was august and very hot and humid, I was pregnant and we had two preschoolers--that was an exhausting trip), Every trip was memorable, as I'm sure this one will be!
1 person likes this
• Eugene, Oregon
16 Apr 16
That will be a great trip for both of you. I have never been to DC and would really like to see it. My first stop would be at the Wall, Vietnam war memorial.
1 person likes this
• Winston Salem, North Carolina
17 Apr 16
We visited the Vietnam memorial last time we were there...it was a sobering experience.
1 person likes this
• Eugene, Oregon
17 Apr 16
@Platespinner I can magazine that it would be.
• United States
13 Apr 16
Kudos mom. Glad that you will once again make the time to do wonderful things with your kids. So often time catches up with us fast and before you know it, they are grown and out the door. The song "Cat's in the Cradle, by Harry Chapin" comes to mind. Enjoy. Take plenty of pictures. Share hugs.
1 person likes this
• Winston Salem, North Carolina
13 Apr 16
It is unbelievable how fast they have grown up. My baby turns 15 next month .
1 person likes this
• United States
13 Apr 16
@Platespinner oh my, I don't miss the teenage years.
@UncleJoe (9088)
• Virginia Beach, Virginia
13 Apr 16
This post makes me feel guilty for tell my grandkids that Disney World burned down so I wouldn't have to keep my promise.
1 person likes this
• Winston Salem, North Carolina
13 Apr 16
At one point we promised the kids if we made a trip down to the Florida Keys we would take them to Disney World either on the way down or the way back up...so far we've managed to avoid going to the Keys. If we had told them it burned down, I'm sure they would have told us that Disneyland was an acceptable alternative.
1 person likes this
@Lucky15 (33759)
• Philippines
13 Apr 16
i always make a promise to my nephews, just one simple treat for them for every good job they in school and to their parents
1 person likes this
• Winston Salem, North Carolina
13 Apr 16
Kids are really good at remembering the promises we've made them.
1 person likes this
@Missmwngi (9689)
• Nairobi, Kenya
13 Apr 16
Children always remember the promises you make to them so it is always good to keep them
1 person likes this
• Winston Salem, North Carolina
13 Apr 16
Even if I had forgotten, I'm sure she would have remembered. I'm glad we were able to figure out a way to do the trip despite everything else going on!
@JudyEv (103937)
• Bunbury, Australia
18 Apr 16
You will both have a wonderful time I'm sure. I truly hope it is a trip worth waiting for.
@Freelanzer (6576)
• Canada
15 Apr 16
It is difficult to plan family vacations the older the kids get as they are involved in so many things. Have fun with your daughter
• United States
13 Apr 16
that's wonderful that y'all're gonna've a 'girls holiday' 'n she'll be able to quench her thirst'f the knowledge'n beauty that abounds...without smelly fella's rainin' 'pon her parade. yepperz, promises ought to be kept, to the best'f one's ability. i know ya'll're gonna've a most memorable time'n both'll cherish this time together :)
@AnneEJ (5102)
• Dollard-Des-Ormeaux, Quebec
13 Apr 16
I hope you and your daughter enjoy your visit to Washington. I am glad you are able to keep the promise even though it has taken awhile. I am sure that this will be a wonderful memory for both mother and daughter. Enjoy every minute of it.