The above photo (taken on 03.22.06) is of our youngest son and two of his identical twin playmates, all 9 months old. It made the front page of Flickr's Explore and Page 1 of Interestingness for 03.23.06. It was also Flickr Blogged.
Reading and admiring: Comments left in "bush.broke.my.country". It's nice to finally see so many people unified and unafraid to speak out. I remember the day I literally got death-threats at my old blog for doing so...
Last week I bit the bullet (or was it gasoline cap) and joined the SUV crowd once again. I swore when we sold the Explorer and got the 2003 Jetta that I'd never own another SUV again. But, well, nine months worth of trips to Target and Publix and having to take along both of our cars during the 'big ones' finally broke me. We weren't exactly planning on having two children who were 16 months apart when we got the Jetta. In fact, we wouldn't even let the salesman show us the 'child safety features' on the car because everyone knew we couldn't have kids. Duh.
Famous last words for $500, Alex.
So on Friday I traded in my cool switchblade-key and just a teensie bit of my pride, and quickly got over it with a dose of new car smell and a shiny painted exterior.
I did stand firm on one "I'll never..." though. I'm still not driving a mini van. A lot of people tried to tell me that I'd eventually cave, but I'm holding my ground. I don't care if you can fit every pew in St. Peter's Cathedral in the back and still have room to tote around the entire Vatican art collection, three forms of take-out to satisfy each occupant, 10 Target sacks, a T-ball gear bag, a quick grocery-run's contents, and a Juicy hoodie in the front passenger seat. In the end, you're still in a mini van. And if that works for you, hey. Great. No really, enjoy it. Embrace that momness* and flaunt all that extra space in my general direction. I can take it. I have friends who would toss their Starbucks right in my face if I even so much as suggested handing over the keys to the Odyssey. But as for me, well if I'm really going to keep "Up With Grups" driving around in something my father-in-law owns isn't exactly the way to do it. Believe me, if I could figure out a way to fit two carseats and both Combi Cosmos in the back of a Mini, I would have turned the diagrams and flowcharts into a Coop-reality already!
It was nice though to wait until our youngest was old enough -with a little help from our favorite Uncle Sam- that we felt we could up our (one) payment just a bit and do this. Todd got his car paid off last fall which made the decision to trade in the Jetta (before four years had passed) a heck of a lot easier. The Touareg was right out from the start, which unfortunately eliminated any chances of continuing the Fahrfegnugen. Our big buying splurges were in our early twenties. Sigh. But with two college funds to think of now, we're forced to subscribe to the "Don't Buy Stuff You Cannot Afford" double-book set's philosophy.
We knew we wanted Japanese and the recent Forbes "top 10 high resale values" left it up to Honda and Toyota. After only hearing positive things from actual CR-V drivers, and noting its strong resale value (very much unlike our Ford Explorer, getting back more than we owed on the Jetta spoiled us) the decision was finally made.
Now I just have to figure out how not to gulp before backing out of the driveway in it...
Changing gears completely (no pun intended), I just found out today that starting this summer I'll be taking a lot of "little girl" baby photos. So stay tuned for a pink-infusion in the upcoming months! (CONGRATS to mommy and daddy!)
And much love -and hope- goes out to Mr. and Mrs. Poopypants in the days ahead as well!
*If you're the type of mom that drives a mini van and lets your children watch Barney and The Wiggles (not that there's anything wrong with that - no, not at all), please spare me the justification-hate-mails. If you can't see it's all tongue-in-cheek, then I'll just buy you a pair of "Mom Jeans" off eBay as an apology and we'll call it even, ok?