March family update

I am declaring Monday family day on the blog. After hearing over and over that I was not posting enough pictures of my family, I decided I should work a little harder at it. I hope adhering to a schedule will force me to try a little harder to post a few personal things. So hold me to it. Good? Good.

Now, where to start? There is so much. I think I will start with one massive photo dump and try to catch up in one fell swoop. 

This winter Tom took on the opportunity to coach the first Lego League team in Fort Benton. Abby participated on the team. In addition to programming a lego robot, the team also had a number of other projects to do including a research project and skit. The topic for the year was "learning", and the team took on the difficult topic of Alzheimer's Disease. Abby and I worked together to design their cool t-shirts!

The team competed in Bozeman at the state competition and met their goal of learning a lot. They even came away with a trophy for "gracious professionalism."

There have been lots of babies born close to us, and we especially enjoyed welcoming our new nephew/cousin, David! It is fun having him so close to cuddle.

I think I have mentioned before that Tom and I are participating in a Farmer's Union leadership program. We join 5 other couples (from 5 different states) for various training activities over the course of about 18 months. We recently traveled to Wichita, KS for the National Farmer's Union Convention.

Our hotel was a great place to stay right along the Arkansas River.

The conference was great and we enjoyed speeches from Secretary of Ag Tom Vilsack, Gina McCarthy (EPA Administrator), and Temple Grandin. It was fun to see the policy making in process also.

The few times we were able to break away were to enjoy a run by the river with the talented and kind Katie Bangs, and after a memorable dinner with our leadership group, a stroll along the river at night. The whole trip was wonderful (minus the part of taking Tom to the ER to get antibiotics for strep throat. Ugh.)  The girls stayed with Grandpa and Grandma and we appreciated their efforts to keep up with the girls' busy schedules.

March also took us to Spokane twice for Basketball. After Abby's junior high bball season she was asked to play on a club team in Great Falls (along with two other girls from Fort Benton). With practices an hour away 2-3 nights a week and tournaments for several weekends in a row, it wasn't a small effort, but we really had fun. The team is quite successful, so in order to seek out some stiffer competition, the team traveled to Spokane for a tournament there.

We enjoyed the family time together despite the extra miles to get there. Here we are enjoying a meal at Olive Garden.

Eva is a great sport and a great traveler!

Here is the Flight team after the came away with a first place finish in Spokane! The competition was stiffer, but the girls stepped up and met the challenge. Because of this, they were invited back two weeks later for a Tournament of Champions (all teams who had won tournaments throughout the year). So two weeks later we trekked back to Spokane. This time the girls won 3 of 4 games. The team the fell to had just finished an 86-1 season! To say the least, we were proud of their accomplishments, and we were proud of Abby's contribution.

We did a lot of basketball watching also. The Fort Benton Longhorn girls made it to Divisional tournaments. Abby's 6th grade class was called on to cheer with and support our first ever Longhorn Mascot. The Longhorn school spirit is alive and well. I love the picture above because the several of the Great Falls Flight girls came to support our Fort Benton girls and cheer for us.

This is how Eva and her buddy endures the hours of basketball. An ipad and a comfy place to crash- even the team's gym bags!

In Spokane, one of the facilities where we played had purchased the old Delta Center Jazz Basketball floor. Tom of course had to take advantage of the photo op! Oh, and I can't forget to mention that John Stockton himself was coaching a boys team, and Tom was able to walk up to him and say hi. A starstruck moment for him. 

Abby is done with her Flight season and has moved on to playing 5-6th grade basketball with her Fort Benton team. Sarah is playing basketball right now also! I don't have pictures yet of her in uniform. 

This year was Sarah's last year to participate in Junior Cheerleading. She really enjoyed this program.

They got to perform at a school assembly and at half time of one of the varsity games.

Starting them young! Total cuties.

No basketball for Eva yet, but she is enjoying her first year dancing. She pliés everywhere she goes. We love her energy!

Hopefully you enjoyed this update. I will hopefully be back for more next week!