Sunday, October 28, 2012

Texas Trip Day 5

Well, the next day dawned kind of rainy and gray, so we stayed in bed a little later than we'd hoped and by the time we were all up for breakfast, we all realized we would not be headed to San Antonio that day.  
But there was so much to do in Austin!  The rain finally went away a little bit (so funny because Texas is having one of the worst droughts in years and we get there and it rains or threatens to rain almost every day!  Ha!  :-)

I knew, knew, knew that I wanted to see the Texas Capital.  I had been there years ago, but I was ready to go back!

 A ton has changed since I went in 7th grade.  They have expanded the capital to make it the largest in the US.  Yes, even larger than the US Capital building.

But interestingly enough.........

They expanded underground!

I was excited to see this expansion and revisit the older parts of the building.

 It is one beautiful capitol that's for sure!

There are free tours offered every half hour during the week.  In October, there were also special ghost/ Halloween tours, but we weren't able to fit one into our schedule.

We had a great tour guide!

These governor portraits crack me up because we were told that every time they get a new governor's portrait, they have to move every. single. one onward and upward up the spiral of the rotunda.  So the oldest governor is at the top, and the most recent is down at the bottom.  Crazy stuff!

These lights spell out "TEXAS" - not sure if you can see that?

The last part of our tour was in the expansion.  Here we are looking up at the dome.  Even though the expansion is underground, it is very well lit with natural light.

These little 'Texas' touches were everywhere in the capitol building.  Even the door hinges said "Texas State Capitol!"  Ha!

I love a good mirror shot!

After the Capitol building, we were off to the Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum.  We were able to get in for free with our membership to the Lincoln Presidential Museum, which we purchased during our late summer trip home through Springfield, IL.

It was such a great museum!  I only wish we had had more time there.  To be fair, we did waste a good 2 hours watching both and IMAX and an interactive Texas history movie.  But they were both great movies, and I'm so glad we did them!

They just had a little bit of everything at the museum.  Native American, Spanish conquistador, French, early Texas, famous modern Texans.  It was all there.

Here are Big Daddy and the kids at a special exhibit about the music of/ from Texas.  Did you know Beyonce was from Texas?  I had no clue.  :-)
The museum closed at 5, and we shut the place down.  We headed home for some dinner and resting up for the next day!