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September 01, 2009

This has been a busy summer for the Robertsons.

As soon as school released in June Andrew (17) left for a church retreat at Tamarack with a group of boys his age.  When he returned Ceilie (my wife) left for Omaha with all the boys for her annual visit to her family.  She was gone for about 3 weeks while I stayed home to work and attended  the Idaho State Dental Association meeting here in Boise.  Two local periodontists (gum specialists) Drs. Mike Florence and Jack Links presented on traditional periodontal treatment, occlusal (bite) causes of bone support loss, and ridge preservation (bone grafting after extraction).  Dr. Jamison Spencer a local TMJ (temporo-mandibular joint) specialist discussed the relationship between jaw and bite dysfunction and sleep apnea.  His information was very interesting, and I have already used some of the perspectives I gained to help some patients this summer.  Finally Dr. Clifford Ruddle a well-known endodontist (root canal specialist) presented a lecture on overcoming common challenges in everyday root canal treatment.  I always come away from every seminar or convention with some nuggets of information that help me be a better dentist.  I also enjoy the affirmation I receive for what I am already doing.

Andrew flew home early to go to North Powder, Oregon near Baker City with some other boys and fathers.  We camped at a ranch where the boys learned to round up and herd cattle, vaccinate and tag, mend fence, build watering troughs, and help with the birth of some calves.  It was a lot of fun for me to see Andrew experience something new, and it was fun for me to participate.  I have always fantisized about being a cowboy.

After everyone returned from Oregon and Omaha we had a week to regroup, then I took Andrew and Nathan (14) with some other boys down to a youth conference in Utah.  They stayed for a week and met lots of new friends, some from as far away as Australia.  The rest of the family traveled to Utah at the end of the week, and we stayed with my sister.  We picked up the boys the next day.  They hated to leave their new friends.

Two weeks later I took a week off to go with Nathan on his scouting high adventure. I went as a Dad and as a scouting/youth leader. I had managed to keep most of the trips to extended weekends until this one.  We floated the main Salmon river for 3 days near Riggins, then we backpacked into the Seven Devils area. It was a great week and the wildflowers were beautiful.

The following week was scout camp for Samuel (13) at Camp Morrison by McCall.  I went up for 2 days and was able to rapell down a scary 240 foot cliff with him.  I really enjoyed seeing Sam's growth at scout camp this year.  He went on an chilly overnighter without a sleeping bag for a wilderness survival merit badge.  He was even in a frame of mind good enough to jump into a cold lake.

When we returned we had soccer tryouts and both Andrew and Nathan were chosen to be on the Eagle High School soccer team.  The other 3 boys are playing soccer as well and I am helping to coach Sam's team.  It promises to continue to be a busy fall.  As busy as our lives are right now we enjoy raising our kids and seeing their growth and the character they are developing.

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While others complain about their dentist I smile and say, "You should go visit my dentist!"