Family Field Trip Part 1: WA State Capitol

This past week we took a 2-day field trip  a little farther south in WA.  Our itinerary included a tour of the state capitol, a trip to NorthWest Trek, and a ride on the Mount Rainier Scenic Railroad.

For years I have wanted to take teh kids to see the capitol building but the 90 minute drive, the traffic, the napping child, and the whole bit just seemed overwhelming on my own.  But my husband had taken time off to do this trip with us.  So this was it! Finally after 10 years in WA we got a chance to visit the capitol.  It's a beautiful buidling.

Of course the traffic was horrid and we thought we were going to be late.  But we pulled up to the legislataive building just a few minutes before the tour was supposed to start.  They start every hour on the hour, but becasue I had planned to spend the afternoon at NW trek I wanted to make sure we hit the 11 am tour .

And we did!  We showed up huffing and puffing! But we made it for the 11 AM tour.

This is where the governor sits to sign bills into law
The curtains in this room (above) are embroidered with real gold thread. Ooo, la la.

This is the state seal.  We learned that visitors used to walk over poor George's nose so often that it began to wear off, so now he is protected with ropes.   There are 39 counties in WA and each is represented by a flag  in teh capitol building.  I didn't know our county even had a flag.  Here's some cool info on our county's flag.

This is the house of representatives' chamber.  It was nice and cool in there. Very elegant.  It was at this point that our tour guide asked me to leave because my happy little baby was cooing, much to her discontent.  :(

Our state capitol has the fifth highest rotunda in the nation.  The light fixtures through out the building were all made at Tiffany's in New York.  This light fixture is large enough to hold a VW bug inside of it!!!  WOW. During the last earth quake it swung from this enormous chain for three days .  Yikes.

After the tour we had to hit the gift shop, of course.  It was lunch time and the chocolate was calling to us.  After we got back to the car I realized I had left the keys in the bathroom! Ugh!  I had to run back and locate them in the lost and found.  Some how I didn't mind running back so much.  Since I got my new fitbit for mother's day, I loe seeing my footstep tally go higher and higher.  So dumb! Yet so effective!  It really does motivate me to move more.  oh well.

So it was a really fun tour and we all learned a lot and enjoyed the beautiful building.  The only thing I didn't like was just exactly how regal it all seemed.  Everything from the commissioned portraits of each governor to the gold thread in the curtains and the marble that coated every felt like a palace and smacked of royalty.  It almost seems unAmerican to have such regal settings for our elected officials that WE pay for.  Not that anything will change....

Anyway, we had a fun start to our trip.