After stumbling upon this amazing photo journal and developing a cyber-friendship with its friendly author, the kids and I developed an intense interest in the Arctic. As a result, we decided to follow dog-mushing as an educational pursuit, following first the Yukon Quest, then the Iditarod. We had a ball and learned much along the way.
The kids helped create a large poster-board -sized map with the aid of a borrowed projector from Joe's office. We marked the route for each race, complete with the checkpoints along the way. Each of us selected the musher we wanted to follow, checked into the race website each morning for updates, and tracked our musher's progress by moving that musher's pin along the poster board path. We learned dog mushing lingo and are familiar now with the names of some of the top mushers in the field. Thanks to the kind generosity of a certain Yukon Territory friend, we even received copies of local newspaper articles reporting on the races.
We were thrilled that all the mushers chosen by residents of the Leone household finished the races. And we shared Kathleen's joy in learning that her chosen musher, Lance Mackey, won it all--both the Yukon Quest and, shortly thereafter, the Iditarod.
By way of a sidenote, Anna Marie is very disappointed that her newfound dream of becoming a musher in the Junior Iditarod may prove difficult without taking up residence in Alaska or the Yukon and without having a dog team.