I looked back in Bethany's photo album and we have had 15 passenger vans for 15 years. The first one we bought in 1996 with our tax money and it did not have any seats nor a/c in it. Terry set out on a scavenger hunt looking at junk yards to find 3 bench seats. He did, but they were all different colors and there were no seat belts....oops!!!! Well that one lasted a few years then croaked, but not without many stories to go with it. The next one was a pretty good lookin blue 15 passenger van that the Lord provided and it even had a/c!!! We were movin up!!! It lasted about 6-7 years and it croaked as well!!!! The next one is the white 15 passenger that was also provided to us and it was actually a pretty good looking van too, and had air.......for a few years!!! You all have heard many stories with this van too, and how it never would croak!! We replaced the engine and it had a new transmission too!! Terry said and I quote" it is running better than it ever has!!" Oh, dear was my thought!!! It has trained famous drivers like Caleb, Daniel, Bethany, Ann and Elijah!! It has carried hay bales, work tools, live and dead goats, many children, many car seats, many transports to the emergency room, tons of groceries, bikes, furniture, plus has taken us many miles, and has had been covered with puke, spills and all that would gross you out!! If you desired to hear one speak, they had to scream even if they were sitting right next to you because of all the rattles and literal wanderings if metal was falling off of it!!! It has been a good van!! Now as of lately, say for instance on a Sunday morning, we have been known to drive 3-4 vehicles to church. A few times it has been me and Terry and maybe Mercy riding in a 15 passenger van, and since the 2nd bench seat usually stays out we sat on the 3rd bench seat and it certainly was humbling to see us way back there and Terry all the way at the front!!! Quite the site!!! Well, Terry has been wanting to do something different for about a year but it just has not happened and since it has not croaked, it was looking like I was going to be driving my grandchildren in it!!! But..........last week Terry pulled a "real surprise" on me!!!! He got me this:
Wow!!!!! was I ever shocked, speechless to say the least!!!! Its a 2001 Ford Expedition!!! Mercy calls it our "Exploration!!" She also wonders if we are renting it or if we bought it!! haha, we have rented many vehicles in the past, so she just had to know if this one was a "keeper." We did not even have to bring the ole van back to the farm. I know it was only a van, but I was really struggling with leaving it there, we had made so many memories together, but mostly it had hauled so many children to and fro!! It carried Joel and Josiah many miles, each having their car seat on different rows when they were toddlers and when they were in infant seats, I sat in between their seats!! Soooooooooooo we have entered a "new era!!!!" For now, the passenger vans are done, I guess unless we need one for the hopefully boatload of grandchildren that NEEDS to on the horizon!!! hahah!!!! I am thankful for the new wheels, for a very thoughtful and sacrificing and debt free husband !!!! AND I can hardly wait until Friday............MY FIRST GROCERY DAY with it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Wahooooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
The Lord reminded me of a verse.....every good and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. James 1:17 It is a gift from Him!!!
Caleb made it Maryland safely!!!! He is, I would say.......experiencing a little bit of heaven on earth!!!! hahahah!!!!! (see post below if you dont know what I'm talking about!!!!!!!!!!!!!