Widgets Magazine

Nov 29, 2011

The Big Van

You know back in October when the Dog Walker was interviewed by the Deseret News, they only asked if they could take two additional pictures. The first one they wanted was a picture of his sign advertising that he is a Dog Walker and the second was not a surprise…a picture of the back of our van.

I’ve actually seen random people stop their cars, pull over and visibly count the vinyl figures on the back of our 12-passenger van. It’s the same size as a 15-passenger except that we don’t have the extra seat in the back so we have some cargo space for trips and stuff. Unless we are toting the grandsons, we usually have enough seats.

We bought our first big van in 1996 when I was pregnant with Princess. We had finally outgrown the mini-van and I had promised my sweetie a Suburban. But after lengthy discussions, we decided that a Suburban would only give us 9 seats and with Princess we would be a family of 8. It just didn’t fit our long-term goals. So we started looking for the REAL van. We drove several older models, but most of them had been commuter vehicles and they were high in mileage and extremely dirty.
Not our van

Again we turned to prayer and the Lord did provide. Within a week my sweetie found a 12-passenger van, so we traded in our Caravan and I had to learn to drive the huge beast. Thank goodness I had some experience with my dad’s truck! (I still try to never get in a position that I have to back it up…)

We bought that first van used and then we drove it for 12 more years before our mechanic suggested that maybe it was time to look for a new one. This time it was much harder to find what we wanted. It took us nearly 6 months and a trip up north but eventually we were able to replace our old van for a reasonable price.

Then my sweetie started talking about putting the vinyl pictures on the back. I have an amazing friend who does vinyl so I gave her a call. She found these cute pics and made me 13 little figures (not counting the little ones by Bossy). I gave them to my sweetie for Christmas and he was so excited! He installed them himself and when he came back inside, I asked him how they looked. “I don’t know,” he admitted. “I thought we’d be able to see them better. I guess the tinting on the windows makes a difference…”

Totally confused, I followed him outside. He was not happy when I started laughing. “What’s wrong?” he demanded. I sobered up and squeezed his arm. “You’re supposed to put them on the OUTSIDE,” I explained. It took us a while to peel them off and my friend had the same response as me when I called to ask her to pretty please make me another set.

Then I got pregnant with Baby Doll. The pictures already covered both back windows and I wasn’t sure what we were going to do. I presented this dilemma to my friend and she assured me we could figure something out. Baby Doll had a rocky start coming a whole month early, so the vinyl pics on the window were not my biggest worry.

Christmas rolled around again and my sweet friend made me a new set. Stressed about them not fitting, she and her hubby had come by in the middle of the night to measure the window. They were totally surprised by Teach and her friend who were sitting quietly in a car on the driveway. But Teach kept the secret and I had no idea.

After Bossy and Gamer had WAY too much fun destroying the old ones with razor blades, we installed the new ones. OK, I installed the new ones on the OUTSIDE this time. I wasn’t taking any chances asking my sweetie to help. And as you can see, they fit just fine. She squeezed them in, just like we do!


Dog-Walker said...

We like to travel in our van, especially if we went to California to see Carsland.

Emma Frances said...

Those are awesome! I've always wanted those for my family's van. Maybe for Christmas this year!!

Jennifer said...

I want stickers like that but my hubby says no.. :( I may do it anyway!

Arkansas Patti said...

Those are adorable and I'll bet you do get the looks and smiles.

Mumsy and Furkids said...

Those vinyl pictures are adorable. You have a beautiful family. The pies and all that food you had Thanksgiving looks yummy. I could almost smell it all as I read especially those rolls...oh, I love homemade anything but hot rolls...oh, my goodness!! Thank you for stopping by Mumsy's Ramblings. Hugs and have a great day!

Julie Harward said...

LOL that is cute...you know, when I see vans like this, I always count the kids too! Great to have such a vehicle. I drove big Suburbans for years! :D

mom of seven said...

I just came across this post. I also have a van, mine is a 15 passenger. I have the vinyl stickers on the window too. Though I only have seven children I still get the looks. :)


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