A day in the life of Mema.

Above: Shirley Dimke feeds her 16 hens and 1 rooster some yummy leftovers.    Shirley is known as "Mema" to her 5 grandchildren, 3 great grandchildren, and several others kids she knows.  Shirley was born on the plains of Alberta, about 100 miles south of Calgary.  She wrote this about her time there:

"We had no electricity, telephone, or inside pluming.  We went to school in a single horse drawn buggy or sled, whichever the weather dictated, three and one half miles each school day.  On our farm we raised mostly wheat, and oats to feed our cattle and horses which were used to do the farming. We had all of the usual animals of a farm for our welfare. We sold turkeys, cream, butter, eggs and beef to help with our living expenses.  We always had a good dog, plus a couple of barn cats to keep down the mice.  Our saddle horses were our helpers as well as our playmates for hours of pleasure riding.  The pristine prairie was a good place to grow up.  It holds many wonderful memories for me."  

Shirley and her family moved to Clarkston, Washington when She was ten and she has lived there ever since.  In high school Shirley was a standout student as well as a star tennis player and a drummer in the band.  

Shirley met and married her husband Vern when she was 18.  They started out with little more than energy and determination, but it was enough to succeed.  Thanks to God's grace and a lot of hard work the Dimkes' became very successful entrepreneurs in Southeastern Washington.  During their career, Vern and Shirley owned and operated several different businesses in the construction industry.  They also managed to raise 3 children, all of whom graduated from Walla Walla College.  

Although Shirley is retired she still finds plenty of things to keep her busy; such as feeding her husband Vern, feeding 17 chickens, 2 cats, 1-2 dogs, 1 duck, a pond full of coy fish, grandkids, as well as playing drums at church, completing puzzles, bronze sculpting, and watching after 3 different homes when the rest of the family vacations in Hawaii.  

Above: Shirley feeds the barn cat Jakey.  Jakey was given to the Dimkes by some family members who moved out of Clarkston.  Jakey was originally known as Jake for a number of years until one day Jake got pregnant, and became Jakey.  

Shirley can be contacted via email at shirley@dimke.com.


Portraits Part II

Dorene Hunter stands in front of the PDQ gas station.  Her and her husband have owned, and operated, the store for 15 years.

Wendy Castillo works at B & R.  She's also a student a Wa-Hi, saving up her extra money for college.

Abigail Tello takes orders at the local restaurant Taqaria Yungapeti.

Portraits Part I

Carol Geisinger stands in front of the BIBLES section at the ABC Bookstore.  Carol is the manager of the College Place store.  She has worked is biz just over ten years including her time at the store in Spokane.  Carol considers her job a perfect fit.

If you've called the 9th street Dominoes in Walla Walla in the past year and a half there's a chance you've talked to Andy.  

Andy Maycumber is a Wa-Hi student working at Jack in the Box.

Monica Carmona and Paul Jimenez work at Los Tapatios Market, which is a Mexican general store owned by Paul's father.