LSSWis - Lutheran Social Services (LSS) of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan

Lutheran Social Services of
Wisconsin and Upper Michigan


Michael and Mary Beth

For more information, contact: Tracey Randerson, LSS Adoption Social Worker at

Family Information

Michael and Mary Beth 
Married: 8 years

Children: River is our 2-year old biological son.

Religion: ELCA Lutheran

Child Care Plans: Mike and Mary will both take time off right away with the baby, and then Mary will continue to stay home for about 12 weeks.  After that, the baby will be in the in-home daycare that we already use for our son, River. 

Pets and Names: We have a sweet 10-year-old female Black Lab named Olive

Ethnicity: Mike and Mary are both Caucasian.  Mike is primarily German, and Mary’s family have come from Belgium, England and Scotland.



Mike, 32 years old

Education: Bachelor’s degree from UW-Green Bay in Human Development

Occupation: Community Service Professional with Shawano County.  He helps adults with mental illness.

Mary, 41 years old

Education: Master’s degree in Counseling from Lakeland College

Occupation: Employee Assistance Program Intake Counselor with Ascension Health Care



Community Type:  Rural

Years lived here: 12

Describe the community/Neighborhood:  We live in a wooded area in the countryside.  We have several neighbors nearby who are always helpful.  Our house is close to a River and we have a large yard with a campfire pit that we sit around.

Other: Wittenberg itself is a small town, right on a main highway in east-central Wisconsin. It is a cute little town, and the people are nice.  It has its fair share of stores and restaurants, and a very nice indoor aquatic center with 2 swimming pools and a waterslide. Wittenberg has a large Native American population, and there is a HoChunk community right outside of town.  The Stockbridge-Munsee reservation is also close by.  Here’s the site for the town:   We often go shopping in Wausau, Shawano, Green Bay or Appleton, none of which are too far away!


Family Traditions 

Holidays: We love celebrating holidays.  We particularly have fun with Halloween and Christmas.  For Halloween we set aside a weekend in October where we get pumpkins and carve them, and then have a little Scary Movie marathon.  With a 2 year old, this has of course become more of a not-so-scary movie marathon!  Soon after Thanksgiving we go out and get a real Christmas tree and decorate, put up decorations, and bake some cookies.  We usually include the movies Christmas Vacation and Elf.  We get together with family for Thanksgiving, Easter and Christmas holidays.

Vacations: The weekend before Christmas we go to Door County with Mary’s family and rent a suite.  While we’re there we play in the pool, go shopping, play games and go out to eat.  We usually take a week off in July to take a vacation.  We’ve gone to South Dakota several times to visit friends, and have stayed around Wisconsin and gone to the Milwaukee Zoo, Bay beach in Green Bay or camping at a State Park.

Family Gatherings: Mary’s side of the family gets together near Eau Claire in February for a lunch and again in the summer for a cook out to visit with all the aunts, uncles and cousins. Mary’s parents are a very big part of her life, and as a family we often visit with them in Rhinelander.  We also get together with Mike’s family regularly and they usually have family get-togethers throughout the summer in Marion, WI.


Family Favorites 





Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk

A Song of Ice and Fire series by George RR Martin






Shrimp or chocolate

TV Show: 

It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia

Bob’s Burgers and Hell’s Kitchen


Rubik’s Cubes

Baking and cooking



Dog or really any animal


Super Smash Brothers

Dr. Mario, Settlers of Catan





Adoption Preferences

Issues We Are Open to Discussing: 

  • Alcohol use prior to knowledge of pregnancy
  • Drug use prior to knowledge of pregnancy
  • Clinical depression in birthparents
  • Mental health issues in birthparents
  • Developmental disabilities in birthparents
  • Conceived through forced intercourse
  • Conceived through incest
  • Limited or no information about birthfather
  • Ethnicity:  Open to any child
  • Ongoing contact: Open to all forms of contact
  • Open to states other than Wisconsin? Yes


Birthparent Letter 

Dear Birthparent,

Thank you so much for taking the time to read this letter.  We are Mary and Mike, and I know we don’t know you, but I can assure you that we already admire your courage and caring. We believe that creating an adoption plan is truly one of the greatest acts of unconditional love! 

For many years Mike and I experienced infertility and were blessed unexpectedly with a son in October of 2014.  We struggle with infertility again, and are so excited to grow our family through open adoption.  Mike and I feel that birth parents would be an extension of our family, and we will respectfully work with you to develop the level of openness that is wanted and needed. 

To introduce ourselves a little more, my name is Mary and I work as a counselor.  I have fun playing with our son, being outside, fishing, and taking the pontoon boat out on the lake.  I also really enjoy cooking or cuddling up on the couch and watching a good movie.

Mike works for Shawano County as a case manager helping adults with mental illness. Mike enjoys solving the Rubik’s cube and playing video games.  He’s dabbled in other activities too, such as home brewing beer, making pickles and backpacking.  He’s very kind and has a great sense of humor, which is part of what makes him a great dad, and a fun spouse.

Our son River is a sweet and playful little boy, who we know will be a fantastic big brother!  He loves playing with his cars and trains or outside on his little bike.  Together with our 10 year old black lab, Olive, we live in the countryside near Wittenberg, on the Embarrass River, not far from Wausau or Green Bay.

We would love to meet you, but regardless if we meet you or you decide move forward in your search, we wish you the very best!


Mike, Mary and River

For more information, contact: Tracey Randerson, LSS Adoption Social Worker at

647 W. Virginia Street
Milwaukee, WI 53204

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© 2016 Lutheran Social Services of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan