A huge goal for our family was to get out of our tiny Civic and into a minivan before Conner turned 10 (which happens this June). Although I love Honda and the Civic was a fantastic car, our 3 children when riding together would fight the entire time.
I'm talking fighting from the moment the car door opened until 15 minutes after we arrived at our destination every single time without fail. It was more than obvious it wasn't their fault - they were squished. Literally packed into our vehicle like sardines and I carried so much guilt over the entire situation.
About a year ago, we realized the time limit on the Civic was up but we were left with my husband's truck note and no alternative vehicle for him to get my stepdaughter to school and him to work. So he found a cheap car shell (We are talking less than a $50 investment here) and rebuilt everything else over 8 months. Dedication!!!
Once finished with his new daily driver, we rushed to our nearest Honda dealership with a list of necessities (space! and an affordable monthly note!) and desires (those fog lights sure looked fancy...).
After 8 hours of negotiations and the truck being paid off in the process, we left and came back 2 days later to retrieve our brand new 2015 Honda Odyssey. To say we were excited doesn't cut it. We were over the moon.
Until we drove the new minivan 6 miles home. Leaving Honda, our new van had only 2 miles on the odometer. We drove home a few minutes, getting off the interstate, when the brand new vehicle began knocking - hard. Over the next 5 stops, our prized minivan clunked and knocked through every take off.
Blake, my darling mechanically inclined husband, looked like someone had gut-punched him as it finally exclaimed "park it" and I did.
That's when a lovely call was made to Honda, they called a tow truck, and a 2015 Honda Odyssey with 8 miles on it was flat-bedded back to the dealership.
Que sad face music.
I knew we would NOT take the messed up transmission minivan we had just legally purchased, and I also knew that I had the right to back out of the transaction within 48 hours. So I called and told them that under no circumstances, essentially Hell + High Water wouldn't even do, that I would take back that particular minivan.
24 hours passed before they had an answer. We headed back to the dealership only to be presented with this beauty:
Same car, sorta. The price? Stayed the same. But this is the Touring option for the Honda Odyssey. Same color as the first, I insisted, but new van-baby came with a RES (Rear Entertainment System) which includes a DVD player, wireless headsets and more USB ports than in my home currently. The 2015 Honda Odyssey Touring also has a sunroof, 18-inch alloy wheels, NAV system, and other special stuff that I'm sure is ultra nice but all I care about is this:
These kids. They couldn't be more excited to have room. There's no more fighting. That's right! NO MORE CAR FIGHTING. They can spread out. WE CAN GO PLACES. And Conner has become some sort of Protector of The Minivan and now takes the time to not step on the seats, collect his trash, and inquire about certain parking spaces being too small.
Before this minivan solution, we were forced to be picky about where we went. What if the drive was too long? How would the kids feel? Could we even handle it mentally? (no is the answer to that last one)
Did we miss out on important family events or social times? Absolutely without a doubt - YES. And now we don't have to. That's such a good feeling.