When I ask my kids, “Do you want a “thing” or an “experience” for your birthday?” their answers these days are an experience. We are finding that in the days of online shopping, we all have so many “things” that spending intentional time together seems to win out every time.
In the past, my daughter and I would take a weekend or a night for an annual “Mother-daughter” getaway. This started when she was around eight years old and we would go somewhere with her best friend and her mom. Whether it was to Canada to visit Whistler Village, Seaside, Oregon at the beach, or a play in Seattle we always enjoyed our time together. This continued for many years right up to the time they both turned 21 and wanted to go to Las Vegas with their mothers!
This year (after a three-year hiatus due to the pandemic) we finally felt safe enough to explore Tacoma, Washington, and resurrect our getaway. After booking a room at the Hotel Murano on the “Black Friday Special” we arrived in a torrential downpour. We enjoyed a cup of seafood chowder and a charcuterie board of local meats and cheeses before visiting the Dale Chihuly Museum of Glass.
While the wind and the rain lashed the building, we were warm and cozy as we watched the resident artists make amazing glass art in the demonstration area. Then we leisurely strolled the exhibits and learned about the history of art glassmaking in the Pacific Northwest. Spending an entire afternoon together with no schedule and no agenda is just what we both needed.
By the time we left at closing time, it was completely dark outside and we looked at the lights and the glass of the fountains and then crossed the Chihuly Glass of Bridge back to the downtown area.
We walked and walked arm in arm, enjoying the lights of the city and the Christmas tree near the Pantages Theatre, and finally turned into a highly rated little boutique restaurant called the “Over the Moon Cafe.” My daughter is obsessed with the 1920s, Downton Abbey, Art Deco, and restaurants decorated like speakeasies. Finding the perfect place for our dinner, we were thrilled that even though we didn’t have a reservation there was one little table that was reserved for walk-ins. We felt so lucky and blessed.
We shared an entire bottle of wine, a cheesy Brussels sprouts appetizer, dined on an amazing winter squash lasagna and prawn fettuccine, and capped off our evening with the bread pudding full of bits of peaches, pecans, and a bourbon sauce for dessert. Delicious!
Returning to the Hotel Murano, we put on our Christmas pajamas and cuddled up together, and watched a Hallmark movie. The next morning we got our coffee at Starbucks, drove to Ballard for our appointment at a studio to get our colors done at House of Colours, and after an amazing four hours ended our time together at the iconic Dick’s Drive-In.
As we each drove in a different direction, my daughter south and me north, we talked on our hands-free devices and reflected on how wonderful it was to spend two days and a night together! I think during the pandemic we have all become accustomed to pausing the things we used to do. Hopefully, we will all once again be even more intentional about spending time with our kids, enjoying each other’s company, learning something new, and sharing a meal together. If you have a child you haven’t spent much time with as a result of the pandemic I hope in 2022 you will find a way to “get away”, you’ll be so glad you did!