Mitch had the opportunity to go to Mission of Mercy in Sheboygan, Wisconsin and we got to stay a night with him there and spend the next day on the beautiful beach there. Now, they do have a beach in Milwaukee, but the signs stating the toxicity level of the lake is a little deterring so we headed up north of here and the lake was wonderful! The sand was clean and so fine that we could even build drip castles with it, a technique learned from Grandpa "C" when my family and I lived in Florida. We all had fun playing in the sand and getting our feet wet although the water was still a little too chilly to get in all the way. Addie got buried in the sand by Papa and momma got to look for seashells. Mitch pointed out that the shells probably belonged to an invasive species that he learned about in his invertebrates class at USU. I just thought they were pretty, but he said they are pretty prolific in Wisconsin. Sheboygan was a cute little town with a great river walk and a beautiful hotel that reminded me of a large version of the hotel in "Somewhere in Time", unfortunately we didn't see Jane Seymour there but we still had lots of fun. Take a look!

Mission Of Mercy

Mitch was able to volunteer for the Mission of Mercy that the Wisconsin Dental Association puts together. This year they visited Sheboygan, Wisconsin and provided about a million dollars worth of free dental care to patients in that area. Mitchell was there for two days and helped translate for the Spanish speaking patients and also helped by giving anesthetic injections while assisting one of the 180 volunteer dentists.This article below was printed in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel about the services provided during the Mission of Mercy.

"Sheboygan - She arrived at midnight with blankets, chairs, four kids and a broken molar.

She camped out on grass, called it a safari. But instead of searching for big game, she was searching for free dental care.

"This is a godsend," Lisa Seil of Plymouth said Friday during the Wisconsin Dental Association's Mission of Mercy.

This was dentistry as charity, dentistry done on a grand scale at Sheboygan North High School, home of the Raiders.

Raider Nation was transformed into dental central by 953 volunteers, including 180 dentists, scores of dental hygienists and assistants, nurses, lab technicians, dental students, translators and escorts.

They were there to serve those who were uninsured or underinsured or unable to receive quality dental care.

There were no appointments. It was first come, first served.

By the time the event concludes Saturday, 2,000 patients are expected to have received an estimated $1 million in free dental care.

For that kind of crowd, you need a lot of stuff, beginning with 8,000 doses of Novocaine.

The school's smaller gym was turned into a reception area, complete with three X-ray machines.

The main gymnasium was outfitted into a giant dental suite, with 100 dental chairs arrayed on the basketball court. Areas were sectioned off for cleaning, filling and care for kids. Behind curtains, a dozen oral surgeons performed extractions. There was an entire section for sterilizers and sinks, an assembly line of workers putting in the hours.

The air was filled with the sounds of dentistry, whirring drills and slurping suction devices.

Dentists worked intently. Patients stared at the gymnasium's ceiling.

"A lot of people are having a hard time accessing critical dental care," said Eugene Shoemaker, president-elect of the Wisconsin Dental Association and chairman of the state's Mission of Mercy committee. "The people who do get care here are so appreciative of what we're doing."

At times, it was hard to tell who was getting more from the event, the dentists or the patients.

One dentist wiped away tears as he told about being hugged by a 7-year-old girl after he pulled a molar from her mouth. Other dentists said they were moved as they walked among patients who waited through the night. They were receiving thanks before performing even one procedure.

"A lot of people have lost their insurance, lost their jobs," said Janelle Stumpf, a dentist from Pewaukee. "There is a huge need out there, especially with this economy."

Seil, the mom on safari, broke her molar four months ago, lived with the pain, downing Tylenol like mints. She couldn't find a dental practice that would accept her as a new patient under BadgerCare Plus, the state's health care program.

This was her one shot to get her teeth fixed, the same for her kids. She needed four teeth pulled. Her 10-year-old son Brayton Zimmermann needed three cavities filled.

The kid was a trouper. He nearly fell asleep as the dentist, John Korolewski, put in the fillings.

"I was half-scared," Brayton said.

But for Brayton, it was over, new fillings and a new friend. He and the dentist talked about baseball.

Faith Olmedo of Sheboygan said her family lost its dental insurance three years ago. She and another mother camped out in a parking lot by the school, and their kids joined them in the early morning before the doors opened.

Olmedo had two teeth extracted. The Novocaine hadn't worn off yet, so she talked like she had a mouthful of marbles. Yet she managed a smile.

"I avoided the dentist as a child," she said. "Now, I just waited in the parking lot to see one.""

Brad one of the students from Marquette dressed up as the tooth fairy and cheered up the pediatric patients as they had dental work done.Another one of Mitch's class mates, Gretchen, was also there to help cheer up the patients and offer them a "bright smile" in hopes of cheering them up.

This is the packed gym they worked in shuffling 2,000 patients through over two days.

The line outside for treatment was staggering. I dropped Mitch off the second morning and the line looked like it curved clear around the corner of the school about a block away!

Happy Father's Day

So it's a week late but honoring Mitch as a father is something to be done year round and so an ode to Mitch is appropriate anytime. Mitch is one lucky man because he celebrates his birthday and father's day within the same week every year. Last year his birthday was father's day! Mitch also has a very special birthday because it is the summer solstice which means it's the longest day of the year, so he gets to celebrate with more daylight hours than the rest of us!

We celebrated his birthday with a little BBQ get together and on Father's day Addie gave him a little trophy proclaiming him as the "#1 Papa". Addie helped spray paint the trophy and although the trophy is silver (we didn't' have any gold spray paint) he still is worth more than gold in our hearts and could never be replaced. Us two girlies are so lucky to have him and "little Gus" I'm sure is happy that he was sent to this family so he could have such a wonderful Papa. Lately Mitch has been showing his fatherly ability to teach by having Addie practice some Spanish words like "besos"(kisses) and "playa"(beach)and "bola" (ball). Mitch felt like he was loosing his Spanish a little bit so he's been reading his scriptures out loud in Spanish and he's been teaching us a lot of new words. He is such a great example of diligence and hard work!
We also went on an outing down to the lake shore where Addie and Papa had lots of fun watching the waves and looking at the seagulls. Addie also picked up some "heavy rocks" which she quickly showed us that she was strong enough to lift. She takes after her Papa lifting heavy objects, they should work out together. You Rock Papa!
We love you Papa Luego!

Sis. Stephenson's Farm Day

Our ward play group always does some really fun and exciting things and this past week was no exception. Addie and I got to go to Sis. Stephenson's Farm for a day filled with animals, friends and a picnic. It was a little overcast and threatened to rain on us, but it turned out to be the perfect day to go so that we all weren't blistering in the sun. Sis. Stephenson teaches an institute class during the school year and invited our ward to come out to her home to enjoy the new little lambs and all of her animals. She had chickens, horses, goats, sheep, rams, and geese. Addie is starting to connect the drawing imitations she sees in her books to the real life objects so this farm day was especially fun for her because she knew all the animals already, but had never seen them alive before.
When we first got there the horses were the first animals that we could see so we walked up to them but they were on the other side of the paddock. Addie looked down for a minute and when she looked back up they were standing right in front of her which made her jump! Luckily there was a fence in between her and them. There were three geese too that came around the corner and Addie and her friend Marie Wells chased them across the grass for awhile until they bolted into the garden. We walked around the horses to the barn area where there was some sheep and little lambs along with some goats and their kids, and two rams back in the corner in there own paddock. The chickens were roaming around and one in particular came close enough to Addie that she could get a good look at him. She put here hands under her arm pits and flapped them up and down saying "bock bock" and "chicken".
We went into the barn and one of the bigger goats stuck his head through the fence and tried to take a nip at my ear. Some of the bigger kids milked the goat but Addie just watched and didn't want to try it out. I thought it would be the same deal for holding the little lamb too, but she sat right down and let the lamb lay it's head on her lap. She stroked its neck and said "soft lambie". Sis. Stephenson also helped her find an egg in the chicken coop.

Addie loved the tractor too and asked to go back to it several times. It was quite a popular spot for the kids to sit and play on. After we saw all the animals we spread out a blanket and had some lunch, it sprinkled on us a little bit as we were finishing up, but then stopped so we could end on a good note. It was a great day to go to the farm!!

Just Plain Cute

Don't think Mitch and I are bad parents for letting our kid put a bucket on her head, but she was being an "astonaut" and loving it. When she had the bucket on her head we pretended that we couldn't see her. Then she would take the bucket off and say "peek" so we could see her!

Addie loves ice cream cones like her momma, unfortunately for a one year old they are really messy.

Addie woke up from her Sunday nap with a grump face and crazy hair that just had to be captured in a photo.

I was making some fruit dip the other day and Addie was helping me mix it together. She got sidetracked though after she saw the marshmallow cream jar and of course I couldn't resist giving her the spatula to try and salvage the "clingys" that were still attached to the inside of the jar. I think she decided her hand worked better after awhile. Oh the sticky goodness of Marshmallow fluff.

Caldwell Vacation

Addie and I were lucky enough to be able to go to Caldwell for a little vacation before this next little guys comes in August. Mitch endured a whole week with us gone, but did pretty well considering we talked with him every night and left a meal plan for him to cook while I was away.
The flight was great! Luckily we sat next to two very nice ladies that were totally kid friendly and both very unique. The first lady didn't speak very much English and kept calling Addie "Bubka" which was very cute. She was on our second flight too although she didn't sit by us she did make a little slinky toy from some paper for her to play with. The second lady was headed to Notus, Idaho to compete in a period correct shooting competition. She had 45 revolvers (not that many,it's a type of gun obviously not with her on the plane), period dresses, hats, and even a fake name she goes by when she performs. Awesome. They were both very helpful!
We hung out with the family for a week and a half which was so much fun. My brother, sister-in-law and nephew were down for the whole week too so we did some fun stuff. We went to Zoo Boise on Saturday and although it was pretty rainy it was still fun and Addie enjoyed seeing all the animals now that she knows the names and sounds of most of them.she really liked the penguins, wallaby's and the baby goats that she got to feed, or rather watched Grandpa feed them. She practiced her roaring with Uncle B.J. and climbed into a groundhog tunnel with Tristan.

Addie loved the Discovery center, especially making echoes in a sound tube and watching a whiffle ball float above a stream of air.

We also got to play a lot in the backyard with Grandma, Grandpa and Tristan. She loved throwing the Frisbees and balls back and forth and playing soccer with Grandma and Grandpa. Grandma "C" also gave Addie a ride in the wheel barrow. My Grandpa Hart used to do this to us kids and it was always a treat when he let us ride around as he pushed. I'm sure Grandma "C" gives fun rides too that hopefully Addie will remember as she grows up too!

Addie loved playing the piano and singing "Jesus wants Me for a Sunbeam". She's getting better and better everyday at singing almost all the words to some of her favorite songs. Among which are the ABC song, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, the "horses" song which is the All the Pretty Little Horses lullaby ( which she sings to her ducky and monkey friend while rocking them back and forth), Popcorn Popping, 5 Little Monkey Jumping on the Bed, the "mr. Crocodile" song, I love to See the Temple and I Am A Child of God to name a few. She loves to sing with momma which makes me happy because I love to sing with her too.

We also got to go to Given's Hot Springs as a family which we hadn't done since we were little kids. We thought it was going to be packed because when we were little it always was, but when we went this time we had the pool completely to ourselves! Addie loved the water which surprised me because when we went to an indoor water park about a month ago she didn't want to get in the water or play or splash hardly at all. I think she liked that the water was warm so it made her a little more comfortable, like a bath would feel. Well she got a little too comfortable because when people would hold her she would want to escape and try to swim by herself. I think because she thought everyone else was swimming without help she could too. She was even brave enough to blow bubbles in the water which Mitch says most kids her age are not comfortable with. She loved trying to get Grandpa "C" and played a game with him for awhile where she would throw a little silver ring to the bottom of the pool and Grandpa would pick it up with his toes which she got a kick out of. There was a little shallow part of the pool where Addie could walk but still be mostly in the water. Here she tried to corral the balls and tried to let go of my hand so she could walk by herself, silly girl, I didn't want her to faceplant and totally wreck her pool experience so I held on to her. She liked climbing the stairs in between the little pool and the big pool, she would go up them then down into the big pool and visa versa. She did this several times, which was pretty tiring for momma. The pool was lots of fun but the warm water sure drains ya!

B.J. and Tristan really like the Birds of Prey that are in the Boise area so we went to the Center that they have there in Boise to see some of the cool birds. We saw a bald Eagle, a Peregrine Falcon and some California Condors. They also had several stuffed birds of Prey from around the world. Heather's favorite is the Harpie Eagle. I really liked the owls that they had there. They do a little demonstration with some live birds but the first bird was a hawk and was a little spooked by loud noises apparently so Addie and I had to leave. Luckily there was a little room that was for kids that had some fun beaks to try on, some books to read and some eggs to compare in size, shape and color! Grandma "C" came out to watch Addie so I could see some of the other birds they were showing. They only showed one other bird, and it wasn't even a bird of prey, it was a crow, I was a little dissapointed, but the bird did soem cool tricks and Tristan even got to participate! he put a piece of paper out for the crow to take then fly back to the trainer. He also gave the crow some money for the donation box, which the crow put into the slot himself.It was pretty cool.

These are some of the highlights of our trip with pictures for some of what I just explained. If you click on the scrapblog link in the lower right hand corner it will enlarge it in another window so they are a little easier to see.