Our family has grown by twelve!
Seats, that is.
After years of wanting a 12-seater van we are finally the proud owners of a blue Nissan NV 3500.
This is my dream car.
There is no other car on the planet I’d rather drive. Sure, a newer, souped-up version would be welcome, but I can honestly tell you that feel certain I will be 100% content with our used version.
A few weeks ago Matt was driving his Volvo and the hood flew up into the windshield. Fortunately, Matt wasn’t on the autobahn, the glass didn’t crack, and he didn’t wreck. But, USAA totalled the vehicle out because the cost of the repairs outweighed the value of the car. We are currently a one-car family, until the NV gets here.
Matt has sacrificed once again to allow our family to move up in vehicle. He’s going to be driving the Silver Surfer indefinitely. When I first started seeing these vans while we were in Texas I knew that they would be a big hit with moms of large families. Apparently, Nissan had no idea what kind of gold mine they had so they made the bulk of them in commercial-friendly white! Fun fact: only about 15% of Ford’s passenger vans are sold to families as compared to 88% of Nissan’s*. The NV is the only passenger van with a sliding door, as opposed do the barn-type doors. If you know me, I LOVE having a sliding door so that I don’t have to worry if my kids are going to hit the car we park beside. There are other mom-friendly features that made this decision an easy one for me, but the last one that I’ll mention for now is that each seat is made for a full-grown person with its own headrest.
When we left Texas packed 7-tight in our Town and Country, we were uncomfortable but we made do. Just 10 months later we packed the Silver Surfer up again to travel to Poland and Berlin. This was not the longest trip we’ve made but I’d dare say it was the most uncomfortable. The reason? Our teens have GROWN! They’re huge!
We knew we needed to increase the size of our vehicle, not so much because we needed the extra seats (though this is a benefit I’m thrilled to have) but because our boys have grown so tall and would benefit from more space around them. We looked at a ton of 9-seaters here in Germany only to find that they were not going to afford us much more space. Trips were going to be just as uncomfortable as before and, while I can drive a manual, doing that daily in Stuttgart traffic does not sound fun.
Enter the Family Truckster.
We found one in Virginia only 15 miles away from some friends. The husband took our van for a test drive, took pictures of its knicks, dents, dings, and scratches (which are plentiful) and gave us his assessment. Based on his information we prayerfully decided to move forward with the purchase. A week after we bought it, the shipping company picked it up from the dealership where it waits to load a ship to Germany.
We couldn’t be more excited!
Big families tend to make friends with other big families. Big families who take up all seven seats in their van can’t take any friends anywhere. We will soon be able to tote around friends and travel in a bit more comfort.
So, please, meet the Family Truckster.
(Extra credit if you know where its name comes from.)
These pictures are from the dealer. I’ll be sure to update when we have pictures of our own to share. (Until then, prayers that the shipping goes well, it arrives here in Stuttgart sooner than expected, and that we have many miles of blessed, safe travel in it.)
Oh, and as I shared in Hayden’s College plan blog post, this decision was made easier in that he’s going to be around for the next few years. Having him here in Europe to travel with us adds to the joy of having a 12-seater.
Pingback: Fall, 2018 | thehamricks
Pingback: Bye, bye, Passy | thehamricks
I am so excited to be able to ride with you when we visit. Happy Thanksgiving to you all. Miss you and love you so much!!!