If the norm is to increase your car size as you add children, then I guess I just swim against the current. While mini vans definitely have their benefits, I opted for another kind of mini . . . a COOPER! The sporty race car blood runs thick in our family and I just couldn't help myself. My great grandpa was a professional midget builder, his sassy daughter (grandma) raced them. Once upon a time she ran her sporty GTO up a telephone pole street racing. Her sister married a professional race car driver, Bob Hendrix, who held the world record for a time in rail cars and speed boats. Grandma has had a sleek supra and a tricked out Mercedes, uncle Shad is on his third Ferrari and has owned every other fast moving vehicle under the sun. So I really truly was a lost cause for a sporty little number. They sing to me.
So what series of events led me to the Stevenson Lexus in Frederick yesterday where I left with a 2003 silver Mini Coop in mint condition with only 28,000 miles on it . . . well . . .
Since January we've been tracking our spending and realized that I drop over $400 a month on gas! I've been driving our Jeep Commander (another sweet ride in a completely different way) which has tons of room for kids and stuff but guzzles gas like any self respecting beast of an SUV would. So with me driving across town to mom and dads, and down to Castle Rock a few times a week I was really draining the monthly budget. Our little Mitsubishi Lancer was a nice little racer but it had over 140,000 miles on it and needed some serious work. It didn't make sense to pour thousands of dollars into it when it was only worth a couple grand on a good day. So we started the search for a new ride. We crunched the numbers, figured out the price range that made sense, and waded through a sea of boring sedans. When we found a used mini in the mix my heart leaped with joy. I was now on a mission. I would save the monthly gas budget and do it in style!
My mini is not only magically delicious, it's super practical. I can have my cake and eat it too with this little baby. It gets 37 miles to the gallon on the highway, is one of the top 10 ranked cars for safety in it's class (safer than the Lancer), has curtain side airbags to protect my little ones, has anti lock brakes, and is built by the car making geniuses at BMW. On the frivolous and fun side of things, its two sunroofs stretch across the entire length of the top (this is Eva's favorite feature - she watched the moon all the way home), it has luscious leather, chrome everywhere, and is more spacious inside than you can imagine. As a mater of fact, in the Lancer, with Mia's car seat behind the driver, David's knees touched the dash . . . in my MINI, they don't. It has a nice little trunk that is large enough for an umbrella stroller and a guitar! The only bummer was that it was solid silver, nothing fancy. So to seal the deal, the salesman threw in custom black racing stripes that I'll go back and have put on in a few days. NICE!!!!!
So now I can zip around town in a sporty little car that sips gas and know that my girls are super safe. Could there be anything better. I think not. I'm so happy I think I'll write a song. A sonnet to my new love, my mini Cooper.