Vacation Pictures

So I decided to NOT do the month in photos but instead do a few zillion pictures of our vacation.
WARNING: This post is FILLED with pictures, you can skip over them if you want,  I won’t know or be upset.
We Traveled 4,208.1 miles,
stopping and seeing 4 different sets of family or friends,
a wedding where my children were gorgeous,
plain old family fun makes for lots of pictures.
Enjoy them if you want!No PICTURES Mom!Walking on the edge with the Maryland cousin.The slide was a bit scary her first time down.Snacks on the back deck with her Maryland cousin.Filling water balloons.Dinner alfresco with the college friends.
{or just some of the kids}J and M~3 playing a little golf on the wii.Watch for the big one in blue to be on ESPN one day.
He really is THAT good!I have no words…J and Great Grandma visiting after the rehersal.Baby needed breakfast too.Family lunch before the wedding.The wedding!C and Keith loving on E who did not feel good.She’s gorgeous!Playing with Aunt Kim.Hanging out after the wedding.He finished book number 35 while on vacation.A little pool time, it was FREEZING cold!Smart enough to stay out of the ice pool.Uncle Kevin was going to toss Aunt Sonia into the pool
{he thought better of it in the end only getting her feet wet.}R on his Jazzy Scooter, or courtesy cart.Keith lived north of Detroit, while we were visiting E begged to go on one of the foot bridges,
they crossed the foot bridge that he would cross when walking to church in the summer.Visiting Uncle Neal.Hanging out at the Rehab center.J and Aunt Patty sharing stories.Snuggling with Great Grandma.O and E hanging out together.My kids can sleep anywhere…Krispy Kreme
YUMThe littles watching the Olympic opening ceremonyThe bigs watching the Olympic opening ceremony
{it was a lot quieter in Great Grandma’s room.}R slept in the diningroom.C slept at the foot of our bed.Yes there are 3 in the bed,
O is such a good sister to share with them!The ride home!It was a LONG ride home.O taking pictures for the alphabet game in pictures.I HAD to post at least one potty chair picture
it was just too funny.

Did you take a vacation yet?  Any funny things happen that will one day become “Do you remember the vacation where…”
Go hug your kids and share a funny vacation story with them.
jen

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4,208 Miles, 58 Hours in a van NOT 53

We’ve come to the end of our vacation, as I look back there are a few things I have learned on this trip.

4,208.1 miles is a LONG ride.
58.5 hours is a LONG time to ride.

Google maps lies… or does not estimate the drive time of a family of 8.  The original time should have been only 53 hours but this trip took us 58.5 hours not such an accurate time but we are home!  Thankfully home.  Nothing like your own bed, your own toilet paper and your own tv remote,  nothing compares to the ease of shopping at your own grocery store or your own Chick Fil A.
AHHH home!
We LOVED our visits with family and friends and look forward to seeing everyone again!  But, as Dorothy said “there is no place like home”  I just wish I could have clicked my heals to gether and be home…

We have a family who loves to laugh, they find humor and laughter a great thing.
We laughed at C and his 6 mile story:
So, my friend and I, whose family is a missionary from Africa, wanted to celebrate his leaving for Africa for the next 3 years, we decided to go to BWW’s and a movie with a group of friends.  We chose Buffalo Wild Wings because on Tuesday they have 50 cent wings, we planned on having wings then going to watch the amazing Spider Man in the theater,  we originally had another friend {with a car} planning on coming with us who would drive us to the theater after lunch, he did not show up.  When we finished eating we decided we did not want to inconvenience anyone, by calling for a ride.  Being above average intelligence we asked the waitress where the nearest bus stop was, but being above average intelligence we could not figure out the bus schedule.  We decided to just walk to the theater, it did not seem too far away.  We walked and we walked and we walked it was around 1:30 when we left, we figured we would make it to the 2pm showing,  He was wearing flip-flops and I thankfully had on tennis shoes.  The walk was much longer than we expected, thankfully during the 2 hour or so long walk, we finally got to my school, and decided to use our above average intelligence to call my aunt to come get us.  We thought it was only about 3 miles but when my aunt picked me up she informed us we had just walked 6 miles. As we got in the car I got a few calls from my mom but I could not answer, since washing the phone I cannot talk but only text, not that I minded I knew she was ticked. She took our hot sweaty selves to the theater laughing the whole way.  When we got to the theater she told us “CALL ME OR TEXT YOU ARE NOT WALKING HOME” We figured we could that was less than 2 miles.  But just to be safe, and since I was depending on a ride to the airport in the morning I texted her for a ride home.
– As told by C

We are not going to let this one go for a while!  Poor Ellen she was so upset with him, when she called me to tell me about it I burst out laughing, telling her “oh girl. that is just the beginning of the stupid the boy does…”  we’ve offered to let him walk home, after all it is only 6 miles…

Taking a potty chair along for a newly potty trained child is wonderful, except when the child needs to poo, we broke rules and drove while the child was on the potty, at one point the back of the van called out “do I smell poop? it stinks back here”  Yeah that took some effort to clean up with out being grossed out.  Lets just say that multiple baggies and wipes were used.  Pees were easier, I just filled the chair with napkins and they absorbed for me, a plastic baggies and wipes later we were good to go.

Eating sandwiches and snacks in the van is a great way to save time and money, eating Taco Bell in the van is a great way to make a mess everywhere.  We will not try that again.  But finding a restaurant the whole family agrees upon while traveling is impossible.  We only eat CFA for fast food,  {we is everyone but Keith} today we stopped at Publix to get sub sandwiches for lunch I just could not bring myself to eat fast food.  We only ate out 5 times over the 17 days.

 I can knit in the van.  I did it!  I had to chant most of the time and the 10 miles we let C drive on the highway I concentrated on the knitting to keep me breathing.  He did fine, and even passed a semi on a bridge, but I held my breath.  There was a lot of traffic during our drive so he had little opportunity to drive, and he slept most of the time.

Family and Friends are amazing and we are so thankful that we love ours.  The kids are already talking about “next time” so we look forward to our next visits.  We laughed, we talked, we swam, we played games, we went to games, we relaxed and we had fun.

Now to catch up on the laundry and get things put away.  Why does it seem that if you don’t put it all away in the first 2 hours after getting home that it takes 2 weeks to get it all put away?

Go hug your kids and talk about some vacation memories with them.
jen

Hand Held Fans Are Not A Good Idea

The kids went to play in Aunt Patty and Uncle Neal’s basement apartment last night.  She has a puzzle website she plays on, so the little kids went down to play puzzles with her.  She also had a fun hand-held fan that A was playing with.  After a few minutes A stood at the door to the apartment door calling for me.  I opened the door to see that my curly-haired girl had the fan wound into her hair.

Yesterday we went to visit Uncle Neal at the hospital, he was in a motorcycle accident a few weeks ago.  He will be fine, eventually but is off his leg for the next 4 weeks {6 weeks total}  and they are watching for infection and bone issues.  He had glanced back while was changing lanes and the traffic in front of him stopped suddenly, he crashed into the back right bumper of the car in front of him.  He was able to ride his bike off the road into the grass to wait for an ambulance.  The impact pushed his leg bone through the hip bone requiring surgery, there is some strange bruising but we thankfully can see God’s hand of protection on him that day.  He comes home after we leave so we all went up for a visit, a loud, noise, laughing visit.Go hug your kids, enjoy a good laugh and keep those hand~held fans away from curly~haired babies.
jen

Hail To The Victors… GO BLUE

Hail! to the victors valiant

Hail! to the conqu’ring heroes

Hail! Hail! to Michigan

the leaders and best

Hail! to the victors valiant

Hail! to the conqu’ring heroes

Hail! Hail! to Michigan,

the champions of the West!

We took the kids to U of M on Tuesday.
As we drove up to the THE BIG HOUSE.  A saw the big scoreboard and shouted out “yeah Michigan, go football, go Michigan, yeah football” for a few minutes all on her own!
It was exciting to be there!
We gave ourselves a self guided tour of the outsides of the athletic arenas since we did not know that 2 weeks ahead of your visit you can request a personalized tour  We walked a lot!  After looking at the sport facilities, we drove onto the campus and checked out the buildings, and did a little shopping.  J got new shoelaces and Shhhhh, I crossed a few gifts off my Christmas list.
Here are a few Pictures we took as we walked around.The StadiumTeam EntranceThe family on the indoor practice fieldBaby A striking a “football” poseO wishing and dreamingJ trying his hardest to check out the field.R and J tried the gates to see if we could find a way in.O has decided THIS is where she will go to college.  Yikes that is a long way from home, but a guarantee that daddy will visit often.

We were hot tired and happy after our visit.
We were glad to get back to Grandma’s house to put our feet up, have dinner and play more games.
Go hug your kids and sing them your fight song.
jen

Wednesday Funnies on Wednesday… shocking I know

Laughter is said to be the best medicine
we’ve done a lot this last week
here are some of the funny things I remembered…
The wedding reception had a candy bar for guests to fill a tiny box with some yumminess, There were Mike~n~Ike, M&M’s, Runts {I love the banana ones the red cherries, not so much} Skittles, and Gum Balls in fun clear glass dishes next to a pyramid of boxes with C and J’s name sticker on the box.
The couples table had 2 jars of their favorite candy on their table for guests to also enjoy.  He had Gushers, she had Cow Tales.  We were standing around waiting for the introduction of the Bridal Party and my nephew C was near us, someone said “wow that is a big jar of cow tales” to which he replied with a straight face, “it took me a lot of cows to collect all those cow tales”  Yeah the whole Overholt Family is a big crack~up

We had a family bbq the day after the wedding, my sister~in~law set out plastic cups and a sharpie for everyone to label their cups.  we could not use initials since we had 4 KO’s, 3 CO’s, and 2 JO’s…  so we had to use names.  Except for the one smartie~pants who put ME on the bottom of his cup.  Later “ME” was looking for his cup, it had become the cherry pit holder for the group since no one saw his name on the sides of the cup…  That will teach him.

During one leg of our ever so long trip, the van was quiet, everyone was reading or riding in silence, when J piped up “you’ve pushed my last button” into the silence, we all burst out laughing.  when asked who he was talking to he replied “my self”  goodness gracious what was his self saying to himself that pushed all his buttons???

J was playing Are You Smarter Than A 5th Grader in the van, it starts out as level 1st grade and as the questions get harder, you climb into higher grades… The question was “what color is a complimentary color to Green?”  I answered Blue, J picked Red.  He was right I quipped back, “I guess I’m not smarter than a 5th grader to which R replied, you are not smarter than a 3rd grader, it was only a 3rd grade question.”  From that moment on I quit the game.  Nothing like a little game cartridge to remind me of what I do not know or did not remember learning…

Yesterday we were driving along on the highway in Detroit, a racing motorcycle raced past us with a couple on the seat, she has some nearly there shorts in bright white and her bum was quite high on the bike.  I noticed her immediately and began praying in earnest that my kids would not notice because if we did we would have to have the body image conversation…  Thankfully they did not notice, well, except for E, once they were in her line of sight she proclaimed to the entire van “why does that lady have her bottom so high up in the air”…  My simple reply “I don’t know honey, I don’t know”

On our way to U of M we were on a bumpy road,  C asked if the bumps were something wrong with our van or the road, I looked back to answer him and J was bouncing almost off the seat with the bumps.We’ve been up late playing games with Grandma and Aunt Patty {sadly Uncle Neal is in the hospital, he had some pertty serious injuries duing a motorcycle accident, he will be fine but it will take a while before he is back to normal} even missing him, we are having the best time!  We laugh our way through the games and only halfway caring who wins!
Go hug your kids and listen to the funny things they say
jen

Family Time and Almost 11 More Hours

We left from the wedding weekend, early yesterday morning.
We took Keith’s grandma with us back home.
We had an amazing time, the wedding was wonderful.  I love family time
{Or I guess I should say I love MY family, family time!}We played games,We Laughed!we played games,we laughed,we swam,we laughed,we ate,we laughed,we ate the reception candy,we laughed some more.
I did not get a good picture of their sweet dog, thankfully she is still a puppy, my kids ran her ragged.  They do not, nor will they have a dog of their own {allergies, and I just am not fond of butt lickers, I don’t need one more thing eating, pooping or getting sick at my house…} They tossed footballs, frisbees, big bouncy balls, tennis balls, ran around the house almost the whole time we were at their house.  She was a good dog never jumping on my scared kids or licking us.  Even bringing the frisbee to E and A for them to play with her.

We drove 10 hours and 45 minutes, yesterday, any idea on the drive time so far???
Drive time is now at 40 hours and 45 minutes…
Keith and C say I should drop it down to 37 hours 45 minutes since we did not put the side visit to see Aunt Kim in map quest.
Official drive time is now 37 hours and 45 minutes.
That is shaving more than an hour off the suggested drive time from the wedding to Grandma’s house.
Yeah we are NOT going to get this trip done in 53 hours as map quest suggested.
Who knows how long it will take us to get home from MI and Grandma’s house?
Having the potty in the van has been so great, we don’t even stop for the 3 little kids, the 2 girls use the potty, and J a used drink bottle. {I found that if I fill it with napkins then use a small scented trash bag I can scoop all the mess out and use a wipe to clean it and deposit it into the next trash can we see, J has been able to perfect his aim into small drinking containers}

TODAY we head over to the University Of MICHIGAN campus
Keith, O, and J are looking forward to see The Big House.
{Keith went to a game a few years ago, we’ve been there before, but my rule following child about went into panic mode b/c I went up to the stadium and jumped the barricade to see the inner sanctum, my rule following family did not} because they had Please Do Not Enter signs, but the gate was open and there were people all over the place.
We are going to take in the sites and have a good time!
We have some big M fans at our house
I have a big THIRTY ONE bag empty and ready to shop!
I can’t wait!!!
What about you, have you taken someone to see where your favorite team plays?
Go hug your kids and share some team spirit!
jen

A Wedding and some Dancing

Wedding day for Keith’s Niece

We’re going to the chapel
and she’s going to get married
going to the chapel of loveMy own Ring SecuritySome sweet flower girls
{rehearsal, Thursday night}

Yesterday Keith’s niece was marriedwaiting for their cueWho gives this woman?
I had a few tears, my niece was absolutely beautiful and so in love.After the “I Do’s”Loving from DaddyJ and the GroomThe wedding partyMy Niece and her Groom with J E and A
{at this point in picture-taking A decided to do the
“is this annoying” cheek slapping from Despicable me}Could they be any cuter???They love each other, they really do!Baby AOverholt 8Aunt Kim and OBusting out the dance movesCousins DancingDo a little danceR, his cousin C and Aunt S and Uncle KDancing with her DaddyMore dancing
{E was dancing with Aunt Kim while sitting on her lap}I don’t even know…

It was a beautiful wedding a wonderful time was had by all
Even Keith’s parents got up and danced!
They did a “couples” dance knocking out people by the year they were married, I am glad to say we made it quite far
19 Years…
But even neater was seeing that the Brides Parents were at 24 and her Grandparents made it to 44 and 47 years
they WON!
That is a sweet legacy
Go hug your kids and share the love
jen