This week, Northern Illinois University resumes its normal schedule, before this week it had been operating on its summer course, which means Nathan had Fridays off. This past Wednesday we decided since this was his last long weekend, we should do something fun. I have been wanting to see the new Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum for a few years, so on Friday, we drove to Springfield.
We had a very nice time, we saw everything in the museum and then we walked around Springfield, we saw both the old and new capitol buildings, saw the Lincoln-Herndon Law Office, walked through the neighborhood of the Lincoln house and even listened to a musical group called the Lincoln Troubadours who sing period music in the neighborhood.
The day didn't really start to get away from us until I remembered that Springfield is only about an hour and a half north of Alton, where my sister Elizabeth recently began dental school. I called my mom and she assured me Elizabeth would love visitors because her roommate is gone for the weekend and won't be back until Tuesday. So, we pressed on to Alton.
When we got there, we went to dinner and then rented a movie. The next day, Elizabeth made breakfast and then Nathan fixed a few things around the house she needed help with. Then we went out to show Nathan around Alton. We went to see the Lovejoy Monument. (Elijah Lovejoy is a personal hero of mine.) The monument itself stands in Alton Cemetery and we found Lovejoy's actual grave, which was interesting.
This is probably my favorite picture I have ever taken.
Then Nathan got in touch with his friend Nic, who lives in St. Louis and he invited us down for dinner. Elizabeth needed to study, so Nathan and I climbed back into the car and continued our trip down to St. Louis. We met up with Nic at his work and then went out for dinner and a drink. After wards, we piled back into the car and drove straight home from St. Louis.
All this driving was made even more exciting by the fact that our GPS doesn't work properly, so we had to turn it on, copy down directions and then turn it off again so it could hold a charge.
So our day trip turned into a two-day extravaganza of friends, family and history. It was a pretty good trip. Many thanks to Pam and Craig for getting Nic's phone number to us and looking in on the cats.