Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Our monster van (Nissan NV)

We got a new car. 
Well if you can even call it that. 
It might better be labeled "beast" or "monster van" as my kids like to call it. 
If you have been following me for a couple years you will know that we have been eyeing the Nissan NV for a long time.
It is an awesome 12 passenger van. 
Yes you hear me right, it can hold twelve people!  

Last week we finally traded in our RAM truck and our minivan and got this bad boy. 

You guys, I didn't even test drive it.
I am a really bad driver. 
Well mostly parker. 
The thought of driving this thing freaked me out. 
And the thought of parking this thing freaked me out even more. 
But after thinking about our options and trying out different things we realized that the best car solution for our family was for us to get an all electric car that my hubby would drive to work (he got the Nissan Leaf a couple months ago) and for us to get the NV as our family car. 
And once I knew that this is what we should do I didn't care how hard it would be for me to get used to I was determined to make it work.

And praise Jesus I LOVE it! 
love. love. love. it
I wish we would have gotten it months ago. 

It is super easy to drive (even for me which is saying a lot). 
It is super comfy and spacious. 
We actually have room to take other people places with us and we have room for all of our stuff (on road trips, etc.). 
I've been parking in easy parking spots (i.e. back of parking lots, next to handicap spots) because I'm still getting used to parking it but I'm getting better and better.

Ok, ready for a little tour. 
This is the car with all 12 seats in. 
There are two rows of 3 and the back row holds 4. 
Crazy, right?!
Since the trunk is pretty small with all 12 seats in and we rarely will need to take 12 people, we switched it up a bit. 
We took all 4 seats in the back out and moved the two rows of 3 further apart so that everyone has a ton of leg room (our kids can almost stretch out their whole legs and not touch the seat in front of them). 
This also gave us a TON of room in the trunk (pic below). 
We put the girls in the front row, and the boys in the back row. 
Here's the trunk. 
Plenty of room for our stroller, box filled with sweatshirts, extra clothes for the kids in case of an accident, Ergo, diapers, etc., a quilt and a box with jumper cables/car stuff. 
The doors also detach and swing all the way open (around the sides of the car).
Plus lots of extra room. 
The front is super roomy too. 
This giant center console is one of my favorite parts. It can hold files, etc. but I organized all of our stuff into little tubs and have them stacked in there. There are also a ton of cup holders, seat warmers, and other goodies like 120V outlets to charge your laptop and more. 
One of the other huge reasons we got the NV was that it can tow a lot of weight. 
We have a tent trailer that we take on camping trips multiple times a year and needed something to tow it and more (one day we would love to get a bigger trailer).
We are so thankful to have found a car that works well for us and that we love! Oh and we saved hundreds of dollars a month by consolidating to one vehicle.
Now we just need a few more kids to fill it up with. 

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Dating my boy

When Mackenzie was little we started dating our kids
Every few weeks (sometimes more, sometimes less) Aaron or I take one of the kids out on a Mommy or Daddy date. 
Just us and one kid. 
one. kid. 
It's so good to be able to have them all to myself. 
To hear everything they have to say, to go slow (or fast...oh the things you can do with only one kid), to soak them all up and enjoy every last bit of them.

This year Wesley and I have been spoiled because every Thursday we have 2 whole hours all by ourselves while Mackenzie is still in school and my mom has the littles at her Bible Study.
It has been so much fun to hang out with my biggest little man every week. 
Every Thursday he runs out of his class with a giddy smile to ask what I have planned for the day.

Usually we go out to lunch 

or I pack us a lunch and we go out for dessert. 

Sometimes we go on a bike ride to the park (or fav). 

I don't think Wesley stops talking the entire time. 
He has a lot of say and I love hearing all of it.

Sometimes we will run an errand together (you guys I forgot how easy it is to have one kid. Especially one who can walk, and buckle and unbuckle themselves and obey instructions...well most of the time). 
The one thing I have learned is that it does not matter what we do, he thinks it is the best day ever because we are together.
Just the two of us.
It's one of my favorite parts of the week too.