Land of Lincoln

It’s official, we have knocked another state capital off our list.  Six capitals in one year.  Not too bad.  I don’t think we will be able to beat that but it’s an amazing feat in itself.

Us at the IL Capital with Abe

We left early Friday morning with a busy plan for the day.  We made it into Springfield, Illinois around 10am and were able to find the Capital building some what easy.

Finally, us with the top of the dome

We joined a tour group of high school students and a tour guide, who was on her 5th day on the job.  It was our first tour when the state Congress was actually in session.  It was interesting to see all the lobbyist running around and the pages setting up.

The view of the dome

Governor Quinn's office

After our capital tour, we walked down and took a tour of Abraham Lincoln’s home.  They had a few blocks preserved and so it was like stepping back in time to the 1860s.  The sidewalks were wood, the houses hadn’t changed, and there were a few, very few, towns people around.

Lincoln's Springfield home

Makin' friends

After a quick-lunch and fill up, of crazy Illinois gas prices, we were back on the road and on our way to Chicago.  The goal was to stop in downtown Chicago and visit Navy Pier before heading up to Scott’s sister’s house.  However, unexpected traffic due to construction and last-minute merging made us reconsider our game plan.  The temperature had also dropped about 20 degrees since we stopped in Springfield and the rain kicked in so we didn’t think there would much to do outside.  Therefore, we decided to go straight to his sister’s house.

Friday night we hung out with the family and had homemade pizza and played Dirty Neighbor, I won!  Saturday, Scott went to his nephew’s soccer game while the rest of us got ready for the day.  We went to Potbelly’s for lunch (St. Louis really needs a Potbellys) and then bowling.  It was really sad that I lost to a 5-year-old and I had bumpers to my advantage.   Afterwards, I napped while everyone else hung out.  Then the adults went out to dinner at Morton’s Steak House.  It was a great dinner, I was able to try some lobster bisque, oysters, and shrimp.  The steak was great, too.  After dinner, the adults played a few ands of double fisted Dirty Neighbor.

On Sunday, Scott and I hung out with the family for a little while in the morning and then we cleaned up and headed out.  We decided to try Navy Pier even though it was still raining and cold.

Downtown Chicago

Us on Navy Pier

I would love to go back when it warms up and walk around and take a boat ride.  I would love to take a boat ride around the river around downtown.  But since there wasn’t much to do we were on the road fairly early.

Our drive back wasn’t as fun as the ride up.  Although there were some highlights.  We were making great time until we couldn’t figure out why everyone was gong so slow, then we made it to the front of the pack.  There was a cop, just hanging out going the speed limit and no one would pass.  Basically, we had a line of cars that would get close and then back off.  It went on for 40 minutes!  The only good thing about it was that it was a great way to save gas because we all were cruising.  But it was so frustrating because no one knew if the cop was working or off duty.  So by the time we got to Springfield we were able to safely pass the cop and move forward.

Then when we were about 35 miles from St. Louis we were stopped by an accident which we thought was the slow down for construction.  And then we were in construction traffic for 30 minutes of complete stop and go.  It was really annoying to be that close and be in that much traffic.  But we made in back to St.Louis by 6:30 and we stopped at the Birch’s to get Reily and then pick up my car.

It was a relaxing weekend but I wish I could have seen more of Chicago, if only the weather would cooperate more.  And now on to a very busy week.

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