I bought a minivan.
Yeah, I’m probably crazy. Yeah, minivans aren’t “cool” by any means. Yeah, I’m losing some gas mileage (like 8 MPG sadly). But I bought myself a minivan which I am thoroughly happy about and I stayed out of debt in the process.
I’ve wanted a minivan for a while. Everyone thought I was silly because I only had one child and don’t you need like 10 before you consider such a thing? Honestly, I hated getting Peanut and all of our stuff into and out of my tiny Mitsubishi Lancer. That car was great when I was just me or just adults, but with her in the middle having someone on either side was cramped to say the least and after this new baby was born I wouldn’t have been able to take more than one adult with me in my car at any time. Plus trying to do something like driving to Vegas when we only had one kid worth of stuff was so packed in that car that when a thing of water spilled it ruined like $50 worth of things we had packed in there.
So I’ve been tired of that car for a while, but didn’t want to tie myself into a car payment (both of our cars were paid off) and wanted a nice minivan, so I figured we’d wait. Then in all of the paranoia (which I still call paranoia because I’m convinced it’s not twins by this point) I realized that if we do have twins, we’d have to get a new car. Still not wanting to tie ourselves into a car payment, could we possibly get one that wasn’t up to previous standards and stay within budget? Turns out yes. Even possibly that our prior standards were kind of silly.
Before I wanted a new (or near) Toyota Sienna or Honda Odyssey. When it comes to cars, I don’t care what you say, Japanese-made are the best. When I bought the Mitsubishi I gave my parents back the 1990 Toyota Camry they bought me thinking it was on it’s last leg and four years later it’s still running strong. When it comes to minivans, Every. Single. Source. says that it’s either the Sienna or Odyssey that outshines the rest. Part of my new life of trying to simplify and downsize means that I don’t necessarily have to have the best. Of course it also doesn’t mean I have to buy a clunker, but I could find something nicely in the middle.
I started researching vans and quickly threw out the Dodge Caravans and Kia Sedonas from reviews on trusted sites (Edmunds has reviews for every make, model, and year that are very nice, though sometimes dated). I decided that I would like to stick to either a Ford Windstar or Chevy Venture with a possibility of some others. I found plenty of cars worth looking at, but the caveat of buying a minivan was that I would have to sell my car and at least break even (definitely preferable if we could make some money in this process and put that towards debt).
We decided to spruce up my car and put it up on a local car buying site, just to see if there was interest. Oh boy there was interest. We listed my 2003 Mitsubishi Lancer that had a Kelley Blue Book value of $4300 for $4000. We had about 4-5 different groups (mostly teenagers with their parents) test drive it, 4 offers (some of which hadn’t even come to see the car, which is kind of silly), and eventually sold it for $3800. This all happened within 5 days. I stuck to my guns with the price because, while it wasn’t in perfect shape (though who would expect a car that’s 8 years old to be in perfect shape), the Blue Book for a car in good shape was the $4300 and my car very much fit into that category. I knew that if I didn’t get enough to buy a minivan, it wouldn’t be happening, so why would I sell my car short? One of the people seriously offered me $2500 without even seeing the car!
When we found our buyer, I decided that it was time to get serious about finding a minivan. I start school next week and while we would have survived on one car, it wouldn’t have been fun. I went to town with my mother and looked at cars I had found online and all of them ended up being bleh. While trying to find an address, we passed a dealership with a van out front and decided to stop. Wow, this van was amazing.
When we went back to town the next day (money in the bank from my car sell), we still couldn’t find a van that matched up to this one we saw. My husband was feeling sketchy about the miles (161K, which is pretty high for an 8 year old car), but it was just so obviously well taken care of. It had all of the nice little things like a mirror to watch the back seat, DVD player, power driver’s seat, etc. for $3500 (which ended up being $3900 with taxes and what not). We decided a car with higher miles and pride of ownership was worth it over a car with lower miles that was beaten the crap out of. No better way to state it.
When I was reading my pregnancy book this morning and it was talking about nesting, I started to think. My house is a mess, I’m not at all ready for school (and Peanut’s preschool) to start, and I often go hours without even thinking about the fact that I have a baby in my belly. I haven’t even kept up with the blog about my pregnancy! Obviously, I’m not nesting, right? Wrong. I took my nesting in a different route this time. I spend a considerable amount of time over this last week or so preparing my vehicle for our new arrival and keeping our finances in check all the while. I am nesting, just in a different way than I expected.
I am 19 weeks and 0 days today. Things are pretty happy around here. I’m still getting round ligament pain and it’s getting worse, but that might be because I’m running around like crazy and haven’t had a whole lot of time to rest. The dizziness is getting better and that is lovely. I also have a bit more energy now-a-days, but I’m still yawning come 6PM. My boobs are huge and my fingers are swollen. ‘Nuff said there.
I’m finally gaining weight now. I went down to 8 pounds below my pre-pregnancy weight (possibly lower because I think the pre-pregnancy guestimation was a bit on the flattering side) and stayed there for a while. Now I’m up to just 4 lbs below. I’m sure that has something to do with my ravenous appetite. Wow, I could eat a whole cow. Mmm… I want a hamburger.
I also think my colostrum has come in. Peanut didn’t nurse at all for a couple of days. One day because she just didn’t ask and the second day was because she asked right when I was rushing out of bed to get our Canadian friend to the airport, so I didn’t have time to sit and nurse, then she didn’t ask again for the rest of the day. Then yesterday she asked to nurse in the morning and I heard her actually swallowing. It’s a bit more painful now and still gives me the heebeegeebees, but it’s not enough that I’m thinking weaning. She even asked to nurse a second time that day after she hit her head, but then she wanted to spend the night at her grandparents’, so we’ll see if she nurses today at all (since she really only asks in the morning it seems and I obviously didn’t see her this morning). I told her that Twig can hear her today (because it said so in my email) and so she was just talking up a storm to him/her. Hopefully she stays this excited about her new sibling throughout the whole pregnancy.