Thursday, December 24, 2009

Happy Birthday Jon!

Today is my favorite son's 26th birthday. He came into the world at 1:25 pm. Not kicking and screaming like a typical new born, but fighting for his life. In that moment, 9 weeks premature and unable to breathe on his own, Jon Robert Pumpernickle changed my life forever.

Raised with only a sister and mommy to a little girl, this little boy was a whole new experience. I am so thankful that God chose me to be his mommy. (Yah, there were moments, but......).

Today, I will get to celebrate his birthday and Christmas with him and his new wife. This morning, she was the one to make his birthday breakfast. I thought that it might seem weird, but it didn't. She makes him so happy and treats him like a Prince. It was just the natural progression of things, and I'm more than OK with that. I will admit, that when I see him today, I will probably think about the one year old with chocolate cake in his hair, or the 10 year old who wanted to go to the Aztec Basketball game, or the 16 year old who couldn't wait to get his drivers license. I know that I will be thinking that he can't possibly be 26.

Happy Birthday Jon! I love you and I am so proud that you are my son.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


I am finally caught up on everything CHRISTmas and have a couple of minutes to post a few pictures from our Hawaii trip.

View from the top of Diamond Head:

North Shore of Oahu:

Our Anniversary dinner at Duke's in Waikiki:

Sunset in Waikiki:

Few from poolside at our resort in Maui:

Blowhole in Maui:
Lava rock formation:

Authentic roadside stand in Maui:

Iao Needle in Maui:
Hubby's favorite beach in Maui:

View from Maui Up Country:

Hiking in the Up Country. Hard to believe this isn't a mountain hike at Lake Tahoe:

Can't wait to go back.

Thursday, December 3, 2009


Friday is Matthew's hearing. My daughter is requesting prayer for the entire day. She has a sign up going on her blog: She is trying to cover the entire day. A lot of time slots are already signed up for, but I would love to see multiple names on each time. If you could, please visit her blog and sign up to pray. We are praying for God's will in general, clear movement toward Matthew staying with my daughter's family specifically, but we are also asking God for a miracle tomorrow. We would love to see the birth father realize that Matthew is right where he needs to be and that he would put an end to this whole thing TOMORROW!!!!

Please visit her blog and sign up to join us in prayer.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Loved Rotten

When I was last in Utah, attending Woman's Retreat at my daughter's church, I stayed a few extra days to spend time with my grandsons. One day we were in Walmart doing some misc. shopping. We were in the fabric section and Garrett saw some Cars fabric. He fell in love with it and I offered to make him a pillow case out of it. My daughter asked me if it would be possible to make him an apron out of it instead. Garrett loves to help his mommy in the kitchen and he isn't always the neatest of chefs. We went over and looked at the patterns and found a cute one that had his size. Garrett, keep in mind, was present for all of this. I distinctly remember showing him the pattern.

Fast forward a few weeks......Grandma goes home and makes him the cutest little apron you've ever seen. I even made him a little hand towel thingy that used some of the fabric and a dish towel so that he could keep his hands clean while he was helping mommy in the kitchen. I mailed them off right before we went on vacation.

While I was in Oahu I received a call from my daughter telling me that Garrett loved his apron and towel, but she also shared the following conversation:

G: (looking at the apron and towel) I wanted a pillowcase.

L: Don't you remember that Grandma decided to make you an apron?

G: I wanted a pillowcase. Is Damma going to send the pillowcase?

Now, I KNOW that he was aware that he was getting an apron, but he must have thought that that was in addition to the pillowcase. It bothered me so much that he was disappointed. Fast forward several hours..........our plane leaves Oahu and we head for Maui. After landing we immediately head to Costco and Walmart for a food run before heading for the condo. So bothered by Garrett's disappointment, I check the fabric section of Walmart on the off chance that they might have the same fabric. THEY DID!!! I bought a yard, paying twice as much for it on Maui as I did in Utah. I sent Lori a text messsage telling her that she could tell Garrett that the pillow case would be arriving shortly after we got home from vacation. Her response was "little scam artist."

Some people will probably say that I am spoiling him rotten, but I want to put that notion to bed. I am simply LOVING him rotten. But, then again, what are 'Damma's' for?

After, I get caught up on Christmas shopping, decorating and pillow case making I will post some pictures of our trip.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Happy Anniversary

Today is Hubby's and my 31st anniversary. Yes, you read that right. 31 amazing years.

I was blessed to marry my best friend. We have known each other since we were in 7th grade. We were friends through high school and worked together at McDonald's. Our first date was the night we graduated from high school and, as they say, the rest was history. We were 20 years old when we got married.

We have had a great marriage. Not perfect, by any means, but we have worked to get to where we are today. I sometimes think I love him more now than I ever did back then, but I suppose I just love him different. I still can't wait to spend time with him. He is still my best friend. He has been an amazing provider and an excellent father. Behind God, I know that I am the most important person in his life. Over the years, our marriage has become much more Christ centered as we have matured as adults and as Christians.

We have had our share of struggles but, through them all, we have leaned on Jesus and each other. We have managed to come out through the tough times stronger.

31 years ago today two kids started on their journey together:

Here we are today. Over the last 31 years we have laughed often and shed a few tears. There has been some sickness and lots of good health. We have been poor and a little richer. We have been blessed with two amazing children, an awesome son-in-law, gorgeous daughter-in-law and two grandsons whom we adore. 31 years later finds us both with a lot more wrinkles and a few more pounds. (Well, half of us have a few more pounds and I think it's obvious which half it is. Be kind.)

I am writing this post early and setting it to post on our anniversary. Lord willing, we will be celebrating with a sunset dinner at Duke's in Waikiki. We left on Tuesday for 10 days in Oahu and Maui. I am excited to spend time in paradise with my best friend! Happy Anniversary Jon! I love you and I can't wait to spend another 31 years as your wife!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Limo Company Update

Please, please, please let all of your friends know not to use this company! My son FINALLY got his credit from them, but not in a timely manner by any means. The bigger issue is......the BBB has given them a rating of F. You can read it here Top Cat's BBB review. I'm done beating a dead horse now, and will not bash them anymore, but it's obvious that they really don't care if they have a favorable review or not.

Prom time will be here before any of you know it, so let's keep spreading the word. There are many companies out there who would love to have the business that would normally go to Top Cat. My goal would be for their limos to sit empty during Prom season, (or any other time of year) and to NEVER be used for a wedding.

Forward me, link me, copy me..........just spread the word.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Don't Use This Company

The limo was a no show after my son's wedding. They simply never showed up. They were supposed to take them from San Diego to LAX. They waited for over an hour before leaving in a private car. They both refused to let it ruin their day, but they were disappointed.

Hubby and I tried to deal with the situation while they were on their honeymoon, because we didn't want to let it go for 10 days.

We got nothing but the run-around. For starters, they wouldn't even take responsibility. They kept trying to tell us that it wasn't their fault because they had contracted it out to someone else. We asked them to compensate my son by picking them up at LAX on their return flight. They couldn't do that, wasn't their fault. We tried to be nice. We tried to get them to do the right thing. They simply won't. Finally frustrated, I told the company that I was going to put it on a blog and Facebook, not to mention the Better Business Bureau. The person that I had been dealing with basically let me know that he simply didn't care. So, he left me no choice....... Do NOT use TOP CAT Limousine service in San Diego!!! Don't let it ruin any of your upcoming events. Pass the word to anyone you think might benefit from knowing this. There are a lot of other limo companies in San Diego. Use one of them.

Sunday, September 20, 2009


I don't think there are many people who don't look at their tiny baby and envision that one day they will grow up and marry their own Prince or Princess. When they are growing up we often wonder what their future spouse is doing right at that moment. Where do they live? Are they happy? Then we wonder how their paths will cross and what will transpire to make them aware that this is 'the one?' In our prayers for our son's future wife, we prayed that she was growing up knowing Jesus.

I have introduced you to my son and to his Princess on this blog before. You can read their stories here and here and here and here. I have shared over and over again how proud I am of both of them.

Today, I will sit and watch my handsome son proclaim his love for his Princess in front of God and his closest friends and family members. I will try not to cry when I think about the little boy who was going to 'grow up and marry mommy.' I will try not to think about how fast 25 years have gone.

Today, I will rejoice with him as he makes the most beautiful girl in the world his wife. I will thank God, with him, for her. I will thank God that she is a godly woman, beautiful inside and out and living her life for Him. Today, I will try to memorize every moment of watching my son look into the eyes of his bride, promising to love, honor and cherish her. Today, I will smile when they are introduced as Mr. and Mrs. Jon Pumpernickel for the very first time.

Today, on his wedding day, I will dance with my handsome son. Today, I will tell him how proud I am of him. I might even remind him that he will always be my baby. Today, I will tell him how much I love him. I don't know what song he has chosen for us to dance to, so I may or may not listen to the words, and I may or may not have a tear in my eye, but I will try to cherish every step that we take.

Today, I will celebrate when they ride off in their limo to begin the rest of their lives together. Today, I will gladly welcome the newest Mrs. Jon Pumpernickel into the family.

Today, is a day parents dream about.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

I Hate That Smell

A few days ago Hubby opened a new can of shaving cream. He soon started to complain that he didn't like the smell of it and asked me not to buy it again. I told him that it would be ok if he just threw it away. Not wanting to be wasteful, he said that he would continue to use it. This morning this conversation transpired:

Hubby: I finally figured out why I don't like this shaving cream.

Me: Oh, yah, why?

Hubby: It's non-scented.

Me: So, you don't like the smell of nothing?

Hubby: Pretty much.

Me: Um.......ok.

I'm still laughing.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Happy Birthday Lori!

28 years ago today I gave birth to my beautiful daughter. Yep, you read that correctly. I am the mother of a 28 year old. Of course, I had her when I was 11, therefore making it not nearly as bad as it sounds.

Seriously. Happy Birthday Lori! 28 years ago today you came in to this world. With your birth I earned the honor of being called Mommy. You were perfect in every way. You were my pink, chubby heart beating outside of my body. You were love like nothing I had ever experienced. I couldn't believe God had chosen me to raise you and I was utterly in awe of how blessed I was.

Don't get me wrong. There were times that I wanted to give you back. I surely didn't enjoy colossal temper tantrums, stomping little feet, hands on hips sighs, door slamming, incessant talking or bossy big sister moments. Yet in the big scheme of things, I wouldn't even trade those moments for the honor and pleasure of being your mom. As I watched you grow up you never ceased to amaze me. You were funny, smart, strong willed, competitive, talented, loving, loyal and, at times, down right silly. You were the best daughter, sister and friend. Now you can proudly add wife, pastor's wife and mommy to the list.

I know that this year hasn't been the easiest, but you have handled it with grace, dignity and above all a faith that rivals none other. You are my hero and my role model for living life in a fish bowl.

You started kindergarten the day of your 5th birthday. How appropriate that your little Rock Star should start pre-school today. Now you can add yet another title to your list, 'mother of a preschooler' and all that that will entail.

Enjoy your day at the movies today. Eat a piece of cake for me.

I love you and wish you a very Happy 28th Birthday.


Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Taking Self-Defense Into My Own Hands

Most of you already know that I'm married to a public servant. Yep, one who protects and defends the public. It's been years since he held a position of actually coming into contact with the public on a daily basis. For 21 years he has been a pilot. Assisting law enforcement on the ground or fighting Southern California fires. He still puts his life on the line daily. Because of that factor the department has provided him with certain items to protect himself. One such item is a bullet proof vest.

I'm sure you are probably wondering where I'm headed with this, or why on earth I'm even telling you. Well, I've decided that if I'm going to continue to hang out with my 82 year old father, I am going to need to borrow the vest. I seriously think I could be one random, loudly spoken, inappropriate comment away from having someone inflict bodily harm upon me simply because I'm in his presence.

Let me make it perfectly clear that my dad doesn't set out to embarrass me. He has simply lost his ability to filter things between his brain and his mouth. If he is thinking it.....he says it. But, oh my word! Then you add the fact that he TALKS SO LOUD! There is really not much hope that the person didn't hear him. We've been lucky so far and no one has responded.

So, yesterday, I took dad with me to return something to Kohl's. IF you are the beautiful woman walking through the store with the three little girls who were about 3, 18 months and a newborn I sincerely apologize. I am sure that you do 'know what causes your children to be born' and I am equally as sure that you do other things 'in your spare time.' I am also sure that you may have just wanted 3 children close together and that you are not 'having them until you get your boy.' Thank you for not knocking either mine or my father's blocks off.

If you are the young woman sitting across from us, with her boyfriend, at the Olive Garden, I am mortified and profusely apologize. I am quite certain that you would have 'been able to sneeze in your strapless dress without your breasts falling out.' I mean, really. I'm sorry that he even noticed because the dress was not the least bit inappropriate nor were your breasts ever in danger of falling out. I don't think you ever sneezed anyway. Again, I apologize.

Next time, I just may borrow the vest. If he keeps getting worse, I may have to borrow a riot helmet and shield. I'm not licensed to carry a gun so that won't be an option. I think the average citizen can buy pepper spray. Maybe I just need to get some of that. Then I could spray dad if he even thought about making one of his ridiculous comments.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Utah Fun

We've been back from Utah for a few days and I've finally had a moment to blog. Utah was hot in the summer. Not a lot different than right here in So. Cal. We had a jammed packed 5 days of fun.

One evening my daughter and I got to go shopping without any children. It was a rare treat and we had fun acting goofy. Trying on ugly sunglasses and hats and then taking pictures of us in them. We sent the pictures to my future daughter-in-law to see if she wanted us to wear any of them in the wedding. I'm not thinking that she bought off on any of them. My daughter also introduced me to Starbucks Chai Tea while I was there. Thanks. Thanks a lot.

We celebrated The Rock Star's 3rd birthday with a Pirate themed party at the local pool. We don't have pools like this here. This pool was complete with water slides and giant buckets dumping water:

The Rock Star had fun with his friends and even Little Buddy enjoyed the day:

Several of us went together and bought The Rock Star his very own 'Hopper' teeter totter. Papa had to sit in 'Garrett's Hopper.' Papa might still be trying to get out.

While we were there we bought The Rock Star a new big boy bed so that Little Buddy could move into his crib:

On The Rock Star's actual birthday we took him out to lunch. He even told the waitress that it was his birthday. All of the waiters and waitresses sang Happy Birthday to him. He looked a little serious and embarrassed when it was all happening. Grandma had bought him a shirt proclaiming that it was his birthday, which he proudly wore. (I just realized that only a grandparent would buy a shirt for a child that they would only wear once. Hmmmm.....yep, I'd do it again next year too.)

Besides celebrating a birthday we also got to see Little Buddy taste his first solid food. He loved it, but got angry when it didn't come fast enough.

We walked to the park a couple of evenings. Both boys seemed to enjoy the wagon ride and, of course, the play equipment.

As always, the visit went to fast, but we will see each other at the end of August. We get to have the boys for two evenings while their parents go out. I'm already planning all of the fun we will have. Maybe the Wild Animal Park to see the dinosaurs. Maybe a picnic at the beach to build sand castles. There's always Sea World and the zoo. Only 33 more days.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

In the Blink of an Eye

You always hear people say that this happened or that happened "in the blink of an eye." Sometimes life just feels that way. For instance, I blinked and now it's already July and Christmas is in just another blink of an eye. Scary thought, but that's not what this post is about. This post is about how on earth I blinked and my grandson turned 3. I really think that something is wrong and it can't be possible.

Dear Rock Star,

From the moment you were born your Papa and I have loved you beyond anything we ever thought possible. We had people tell us that we would love you more than we loved our own children. I don't think that that is the case, but I can tell you that we love you deeply and unconditionally.

Since you were just a tiny little baby you have had an amazing connection with your Papa. It started when you were old enough to interact. There has just always been something special between the two of you.

We loved to take you places when you still lived here. Over your first year we watched as you expanded your world and explored the things around you.

And in the blink of an eye, you were a year old.

Over the next year you grew in leaps and bounds and changed so much. We loved watching you turn into a toddler. We went camping, went to Hawaii, helped move you to Utah and laughed whenever you were around. You started to communicate. In the beginning you called Papa 'raw-raw' and you called me 'gee.' We blinked and you started calling Papa 'raw-paw' and me 'gee-gee.' Gee-gee was said with an accent that made me sound like a french woman. You loved to visit Papa at his work. You wanted to sit in each and every helicopter.

We visited The Wild Animal Park, Sea World and Disneyland:

And in the blink of an eye you were two:

When you were just a little over two your language skills exploded! We were able to start talking to you on the phone and you started repeating everything that we said. Almost everytime you spoke you made us laugh. Raw-paw became 'graw-paw' and then Papa. Gee-Gee became Damma. Just the other day you called me Damma Ginny. We went to Lake Tahoe where it was quickly determined that you, like all Shellhammer's before you, LOVE the lake. We visited each other several times this year. You became a big brother to Little Buddy. You were strong willed one moment and sweet and loving the next. Everytime we saw you you were bigger and taller. You still loved to visit Papa's work and sit in the 'hoppers.' You and Papa started the tradition of sleeping in the tent in the family room when you come to visit.

Papa and I are coming to visit you today. I just got off the phone with you and you asked me if I was going to the airport after I got dressed. You wanted to make sure that I was bringing Papa. You have told us on several occasions that at your birthday party you are going to slide down the big slide with Papa and that the big bucket is going to dump water on both of you. You know that we are buying you a new bed so that Little Buddy can have your crib. You have been all excited about your Cars bedspread. You have told us that you want a brown cake with beige frosting for your birthday party.

On Monday, we will have blinked an eye and you will officially turn three. This coming year you will start pre-school and make new friends. Your world will begin to expand even more. You are going to be a ring bearer in your uncle's wedding. You will grow taller and you will no doubt say something to make us laugh almost on a daily basis. And, in the blink of an eye, you will turn four.

Papa and Damma wish you a very Happy 3rd Birthday on Monday! We are so excited that we get to share your day with you. When you got off the phone with Damma a few minutes ago you said, "Bye Damma, I love you." Ditto, Rock Star, Ditto.
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