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Not yet ready for the mini van!

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Old 01-15-2008, 01:58 PM   #1
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vsmom HB User
Not yet ready for the mini van!

Ok, so we are expecting our 3rd. We will need a new car soon but I don't really want a mini van and can't stand the thought of a gas guzzler SUV. Do we just live like sardines for a while in my station wagon? Or is it worth it to bite the bullet and buy a mini van? Thanks!

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Old 01-15-2008, 07:22 PM   #2
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Laura7876 HB User
Re: Not yet ready for the mini van!

It will definately be worth it to buy the mini van. I think the kids would be happier, plus that way you also have the extra room if your kids have friends over, or something like that.

Old 01-16-2008, 09:48 AM   #3
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happymom28 HB User
Re: Not yet ready for the mini van!

My sister's children are now 3, 9, and 12 and she just recently bought a mini van right before christmas. She was so affraid of the "soccer mom" stigma that went along with it she would cram all 3 children, herself, and her husband into their 4 door sedan. She actually made fun of my station wagon (that I LOVE btw) while they were packed like sardines in there!

Now that she has gotten over the fact that she is 32, has 3 kids, and needs the room she loves her mini van. She actually admitted how foolish she was for waiting so long to do it.

I think it is worth you getting it. Your kids will have more room (and you know how young kids HATE their carseats to be touched!) and you will have extra room for unexpected friends (depending on the model you get). It is one of those things that once you get it you can't imagine how you ever lived your life before it.

Old 01-16-2008, 11:30 AM   #4
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CaringMom HB User
Re: Not yet ready for the mini van!

How about a third YES vote! I also swore I'd never own one but have had one since my girls were 7 and 11. They are now 16 and 20 and I still have one, though the 16 y/o is the only one home now. I love it!! More room, you sit up higher and can see more. They keep trying to talk me into a regular sedan or some type of SUV (they are nice too), but I like the van.
Try one for a weekend test drive.
Most now have built in car seats for kids who sit on their own which is an added nice feature.

Old 01-16-2008, 02:22 PM   #5
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Re: Not yet ready for the mini van!

Happy, you made me laugh! That is sooo me! I always think about how cool I used to be... not anymore! I think we will probably just have to go for it. I know the kids would like it and it will be nice to have the extra room. I have a white station wagon now...not like I'm rollin around in a Hummer or anything! Thanks girls!

Old 01-22-2008, 08:09 PM   #6
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mznell HB User
Re: Not yet ready for the mini van!

My children are 26 and 23. I managed to avoid buying a mini-van the whole time my kids were living at home, despite the fact that my son was a hockey goalie and always had tons of equipment. A couple years ago when everyone else my age was talking about empty nesting, buying two-seaters, etc. I acquired my first mini van. I have two large dogs. In order to travel with them in their crates, I felt I just had to have a mini van. I wanted one that had removable seats or ones that folded into the floor. I can move anything -- stop at any rummage sale and never have to worry if I can get what I buy home, or not. I can stop at the nursery, buy a couple trees, have them loaded in, and off I go. I adore the independence it gives me!! I absolutely LOVE my mini van and will never drive anything else.

Don't let other people's stereotypes get in the way of enjoying your own life. And don't worry ladies. You CAN be cool again....

Old 01-23-2008, 05:41 AM   #7
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mitpatsmom HB User
Re: Not yet ready for the mini van!

I so agree with everyone else. I used to drive SUV's, but they are so wide, I couldn't park at the store without someone bashing the side with their car doors. I felt like I was driving a tank.

The last time we traded vehicles, I decided to go for the van and I'm so glad I did. There is so much more room. I have an almost 18-year-old and I can fill it up with his soccer buddies and everyone is comfortable. There is no way I could get an SUV with this kind of legroom unless I got the huge, gas-guzzling kind.

I drive my 12-year-old in a car-pool to school. I easily fit 4 boys, 4 backpacks, 2 trumpets and a violin and the unloading takes seconds. Last year I had an additional kid and a tuba! Still, no problem.

My van has the seats that fold into the floor, so you can haul almost anything. We recently renovated both bathrooms (did the work ourselves) and were able to haul off most of the demo work to the dump in the van. The dump charges $8 for a truck to dump, but only $4 for passenger vehicles, including mini-vans, so we saved there too.

One last thing, the gas milage is 19/21. Not bad for a vehicle that can haul 7 people. I'd like to see an SUV that can do that with the same milage.

Old 01-23-2008, 09:00 AM   #8
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mcr285 HB Usermcr285 HB User
Re: Not yet ready for the mini van!

can you reach the kids who sit in the back seat when you are in the front seat driving? i love my tahoe because i can reach both my girls from the front seat.... i'm expecting my 3rd, and we're considering a minivan, but i LIKE that i can reach my kids from the front seat! i travel by myself with my kids a lot and have to do things one handed while driving.... not near as dangerous as it sounds.... i'm talking about just handing a juice cup back, or handing back a fruit snack or something like that which doesn't require looking at my kids, just throwing an arm back!

Old 01-23-2008, 09:33 AM   #9
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mitpatsmom HB User
Re: Not yet ready for the mini van!

You can reach the kids in the middle seats, but not in the back. My kids are older, so I don't need to do that anymore. I remember those days, though.

The van I bought (Toyota Sienna) has a bench in the very back that seats 3 and 2 captains chairs in the front and middle rows. Mine is a 2004, and at that time they had one that would fit 8, which I assume has a bench seat in the middle and back, but I don't know if it's still available.

Old 01-25-2008, 07:35 PM   #10
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Caravan HB User
Re: Not yet ready for the mini van!

Eh, for what it's worth...

you're not going to looked down upon for driving a minivan.

At 16, I bought a minivan for myself. It was practical at the time. I love hauling my friends around. I pulled out the carpet and put in some cool patterned carpet (father owns a floor covering store). I pulled out the headliner, bought some fabric from wal-mart and had a cool pattern up there too. I removed the middle seats so there was plenty of room. Everyone loved it, I ended up winning "best car" in my high school graduting class. Honestly.

People don't care what you drive. You need to feel good about yourself with whatever you drive. My winter "beater" is a 1989 Toyota Camry. I dispise this car. But it gets me to college with 28 miles to the gallon which is much better than my Chrysler Convertible. But it was cheap and practical and I can rely on it.

Old 03-21-2008, 12:18 PM   #11
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maggieloop HB User
Re: Not yet ready for the mini van!

We had to cave in and get the mini-van (only because we couldn't afford another SUV or truck. Sorry, but if you base your decision on gas guzzling, my minivan and my husbands truck get the same crappy mileage. You won't be stuck in it forever and you will like the extra room.

I jsut can't wait until I can back into my sports car!!!!!!

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