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Happy 17th Birthday, Whosteen!




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Dear Justin,

Holy shit  – I can’t believe you’re seventeen years old!

Where did all of the time go?

It seems just like yesterday when you had your first glass of orange juice and asked, “Who put feathers inside my cup?”

It seems just like yesterday when you almost drowned in quicksand.

It seems just like yesterday when you had an evil imaginary friend named Jackrafire.

It seems just like yesterday when I made this silly movie for you.

It seems just like yesterday when you started high school.

It seems just like yesterday when you cut off all your hair and pierced your ears.

It seems just like yesterday when you dressed up as a woman for school.


But it also feels like a really long time ago.


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I am more proud of you than I’ve ever been.

I am more impressed with you than I’ve ever been.

And yet, I am more nervous about letting you go than I’ve ever been.

As I hand you the keys to the car, and surrender you to the universe, please remember these Top Ten Things while driving.


  1. Do not drink and drive.
  1. Do not text and drive.  In fact don’t use your phone at all while driving.
  1. Always wear your seat belt.
  1. Always check your mirrors.  And use your head.  Literally.  Turn your head to look to avoid blind spots.
  1. Always signal when turning or changing lanes.
  1. Do not tailgate or cut people off.  Basically, don’t drive like a dick.  Even if you are surrounded by dicks.  And just because I am not in the car supervising anymore doesn’t mean you get to be cocky and arrogant behind the wheel.
  1. Do not speed.  It’s better to be late and arrive alive.
  1. Always be aware of other drivers and what they’re doing – especially motorcyclists.  Also, you are on the road every day with the drunks, the suicidal, the medically unfit, and the seriously stupid.  Be mindful.
  1. Keep your eyes on the road.
  1. In the event you’re in an accident or if the car breaks down: Stay with the vehicle. Call 911.  Call me.  In that order.
  1. Bonus Advice: DON’T DIE!  Be smart. Be safe.


And lastly, but most importantly, always remember how much I love you.

Happy 17th Birthday, Justin!





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  • http://beetle-blog.com/ babs (beetle)

    Happy Birthday Justin! Do as your mother tells you and you won’t go far wrong 😉

  • shadowrun300

    I love that last picture Meleah! Looks to me like you’ve raised a wonderful, intelligent, responsible young man. I have no doubt he’ll follow ALL your instructions. Happy Birthday, Justin! And congratulations to you, Meleah. You’ve done an excellent job these last 17 years!

  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah

    Thank you, Babs!

  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah

    I totally cried today – right after we left the DMV and he passed his drivers license test!

  • HeSaidHisTelephoneNumberWas911

    Happy Birthday Justin, and congrats on the license. Melee, for all of those yesterdays, you will have many, many tomorrows. You have so much to be proud of. Best advise of all; “don’t drive like a dick”.

  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah

    Well he better NOT drive like a dick!


  • http://www.triloquist.net Ron

    OMG…what a freakin’ faaaaaaaaaaabulous post, Meleah!!!

    Funny and oh so touching at the same time!

    LOVE that first black and white photo of your son shooting the birds! Bwhahahahahahahahah! FLAWLESS!

    And this….

    “It seems just like yesterday when you had your first glass of orange juice and asked, “Who put feathers inside my cup?””

    That is PRICELESS!

    And of course, that last photo of you and he is just AWESOME!


    Great post, girl!


  • http://twitter.com/leslie Leslie Poston

    Awwwww. :) I can’t believe he’s 17. Now *I* feel old…

  • http://artofbeingconflicted.com Cheryl P.

    TO JUSTIN: Happy Birthday from some random person you don’t know. I hope year 17 treats you well. AND by all means, follow your mother’s driving advise. Seriously…very good advice.

    TO MELEAH: That is such a cute post. Your a sweet mama.

  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah

    Thank you Ron!! And I cried like a FOOL after he got his drivers license at the DMV this morning!

  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah

    Right? I feel like I am a THOUSAND years old!

  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah

    Awwww! Thank you, Cheryl!! XOXOXOXO

  • http://decksidethoughts.blogspot.com Cheryl

    Happy birth-giving day to you and happy birthday to Justin!

    I never joined in the big list on FB and my dad and my grandfather taught me 2 lessons no one ever remembers.

    Never trust a blinker. Wait until the vehicle actually makes the turn then proceed into traffic.
    Give truckers hauling trailers plenty of room. The time it takes for them to stop all depends on the weight of their load, something you can’t see.

  • http://www.triloquist.net Ron

    (((((( You ))))))


  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah


  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah

    Awesome advice!!! Thank you!!

  • HeSaidHisTelephoneNumberWas911

    Naaa, he’s had a good instructor.

  • Robert

    I think you can be rightly proud there Meleah, he looks a smart young man and I am sure he will do you proud..

    Always remember Justin, and I speak here from experience. Your mother is always right, even when she is wrong.

  • http://www.roses2rainbows.com/ Linda R.

    A sweet post, great pictures, and good advice. Congratulations and happy birthday Justin. Good job, Mom!

  • http://thinkspin.com/ Lauren

    Aw! Happy Birthday! I was nervous when my son started to drive. But it’s all good! He’s a better driver than I am.

  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah


  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah


  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah

    Thank you, Linda!


  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah

    I am a NERVOUS wreck tonight. Like crazy pacing the floors.

    Although – I am VERY excited that I will NOT have to wake up early tomorrow to pick him up – because he can drive himself home in the morning!

  • Abby Normal

    Aaw, happy birthday to Justin!

  • Robert

    I think that about covers it

  • Lucy

    Happy Birthday Justin!!! Print this out and listen to your mama forever :)

  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah


  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah

    Thank you, Abby!

  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah

    I totally wrote down THE RULES on an index card and put them inside his birthday card!

  • http://intomystic.wordpress.com/ territerri

    Oh, Meleah! He’s so grown up! How did that happen so fast?

    Happy Birthday, Justin! Listen to your mom. I’m pretty sure she’ll kick your butt if you don’t! :-)

  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah

    Thank you, Terri! And I have NO IDEA how he’s 17 already! I’m still in shock!

  • http://twitter.com/martywombacher marty wombacher

    Happy birthday, Justin! Love the last picture of the two of you! How fast did the 17 years go by, Meleah?

  • Jay of The Depp Effect

    Awwwww – congratulations on a job well done – well, almost. He has a year to go yet, doesn’t he, before you can say you’re done. If we’re EVER done as parents!

    Sounds like a great kid, and your rules for driving are excellent. Couldn’t have written them better myself. Have to say, the best lessons DS No 2 got about driving was 1) when he wrapped his car round a lamp-post with a friend in the passenger seat and injured his friend (just bruising, thankfully), and 2) when a friend of his died in a car crash, and killed someone else at the same time.

    It happens. Frighten him if you must.

  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah

    I can’t even get over it!

  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah

    That’ my BIGGEST fear. And I have tried my very best to scare the crap out of my son so it doesn’t happen to him!

  • agg79

    Happy Birthday, Whosteen! 17 years young and ready to take on the world. Good luck and listen to your momma. She’s one smart chica and you better not cross her otherwise she might have to go all BSC on your butt. Congrats and hope you enjoyed your birthday!

  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah

    Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww!! Thank you, Agg!!

  • Small Town Mommy

    I can’t believe I totally missed his birthday. I hope he had a wonderful day and has a fantastic year.

  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah

    Thank you, Anne!! I can’t believe he’s DRIVING!

  • ladyV

    i too forgot what i said here, probably i like the pics and good driving advice for jch. then i asked if i got his initial right, but i see a tag down there that tells me that i did. wooohooo.

  • http://mommamiameaculpa.com meleahrebeccah

    I love you, Val!

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