A man, a van and refinancing

We refinanced.

Because my husband is clever and hard working and knows money. He did his research with companies such as StreamlineRefinance.net and he realized we could save a whole lot a month on our mortgage. Also looking into some home energy improvements to save even more on our monthly bills. All around hip hip hurray for him!

Except he broke my minivan. Just as he saved a whole lot and I started planning ways to spend his hard earned money, my lover drove my poor old mama mobile like it was a Formula 1.
Long story short, we returned from our camping trip in a tow truck.

See the ray of sunshine and hope over my beautiful van? Don’t be fooled. After they checked it out at the service center we decided the only thing to do was to donate it to a worthy cause. That was well over a week ago.

I have been at home ever since. My garden looks lovely, my photos are all edited, I have read everyones blog posts and my house is immaculate. I wish! I have been staring at used and new vehicles websites like a woman possessed. I know all the specs on all minivans available in the continental USA. I know the inventory of all car dealerships within 50 miles of our island. I know the name of the receptionist at two of them and I know one of them has lunch around 2 o’clock. I even know the code for exterior colors on the two minivans we narrowed it down to.

What I don’t know is which one to buy.

Contender number one is:


and contender number two is:


Please help. I have changed my mind 371 times in the past 24 hours. Little J has chosen both, Big M has not seen the ocean this month and husband will probably end up buying himself a Porsche if I don’t make the call soon.

Vote here:

Which Minivan should I make my husband buy me?


Promise I let you know the outcome. If I ever make it out of my house again.


This entry was posted in The good life and tagged , , , .


  1. [email protected] August 15, 2012 at 20:57 #
  2. Vanessa August 15, 2012 at 21:06 #

    As a European you know that nothing goes over German engineering :-)

  3. Stasha August 15, 2012 at 22:03 #

    Twitter: PonderingMama
    I voted. . .

    But man that was a hard choice.

    I do not envy you at all.
    Stasha recently posted..Random Friday Thoughts

  4. Alison August 16, 2012 at 00:17 #

    Twitter: AlisonSWLee
    Oh your poor minivan!

    Alison recently posted..A Letter – For You

  5. mateja August 16, 2012 at 01:34 #

    I love Toyota ! 😀
    mateja recently posted..Journal 14. August

  6. villas ubud August 16, 2012 at 01:42 #

    I love Toyota..

  7. Katie E August 16, 2012 at 04:07 #

    Twitter: euregirlsandboy
    Yay for a new car though, right? It was tied when I just voted though. Wouldn’t it be funny if the voting came out to 50% for each? I pick the VW because I love VW in general, but I’m fully aware that the Toyota Sienna is awesome and has a great reputation :)
    Katie E recently posted..Jenny’s Phone Pictures #iPPP

  8. Dobry fotograf August 16, 2012 at 04:17 #

    That is very fascinating, You’re a very professional blogger. I’ve joined your feed and sit up for in search of more of your wonderful post. Also, I’ve shared your web site in my social networks!

  9. Tamar Strauss-Benjamin August 16, 2012 at 04:58 #

    Max in a porche – I would pay money to see a picture of that!
    Tamar Strauss-Benjamin recently posted..Adventure on Wheels

  10. kathy August 16, 2012 at 06:07 #

    Maybe if you treat the receptionist to lunch at 2:00 she could cut you a good deal :)
    kathy recently posted..To market, to market, to buy a…

  11. Stacie August 16, 2012 at 06:40 #

    Twitter: snapsandbits
    I’m not sure you can go wrong with either choice! Your ray of sunshine comment made me laugh!
    Stacie recently posted..Sisters Reunite

  12. [email protected] Rasler August 16, 2012 at 06:56 #

    Twitter: teamrasler
    I don’t know anything about the VW, so I don’t think I’m allowed to vote, but I do hear great things about the Sienna. Sorry about your minivan, but looking forward to seeing pictures of the glorious new one – can you arrange for another ray of sunshine right over it when it comes home??
    [email protected] Rasler recently posted..Snapshots

  13. The Blogging Mama August 16, 2012 at 08:56 #

    Twitter: BlogMamaAndrea
    I have the VW ROutan (aptly named Darth, as in Darth Vader). Love Love Love my VW! Can’t get enough of it in fact. It’s still sporty, and doesn’t make me feel like a mini-van mom, drives like a dream, and did I mention I love my Routan? Seriously, we also looked at the Toyota (having had hte previous version) and it felt like Playschool plastic in comparison to the VW. Plus you can get the VW with the RES dvd system for thousands less than the Toyota. Trust me, VW all the way :)
    The Blogging Mama recently posted..Tidbits: Underoos, Mags, the great school debate, and Russian vodka

  14. The Blogging Mama August 16, 2012 at 08:59 #

    Twitter: BlogMamaAndrea
    Did I mention I get 29 mpg highway in my VW? Yep, I totally do! Email me if you have questions!
    The Blogging Mama recently posted..Tidbits: Underoos, Mags, the great school debate, and Russian vodka

  15. Ally August 16, 2012 at 13:48 #

    Twitter: normalmomally
    I voted based on the one I used to want :) But you did make the choice kind of hard!
    Ally recently posted..A Litte Marriage Q&A At…

  16. Susi August 16, 2012 at 14:18 #

    Twitter: bocafrau
    I heard they are both great but I gotta vote for the Routan, German engineering and all!!! :) Good luck.
    Susi recently posted..Share Your Recipe Thursdays… {Frosted Orange Glaze Cookies}

  17. Runnermom-jen August 16, 2012 at 17:28 #

    Twitter: runnermomjen
    Oh my, I think you better make a choice soon so you can get out of the house, lady!! 😉
    Can’t wait to see what you picked.
    Runnermom-jen recently posted..Good, Better, Best…

  18. My Inner Chick August 16, 2012 at 18:32 #

    Twitter: krrobi
    –I voted for the cool one! :)
    My Inner Chick recently posted..Gravity On My Heart

  19. Anna August 17, 2012 at 02:21 #

    I really feel sorry bout your minivan, but you don’t need to be in anger with your husband because of that. Adversities happen, you have to get over them and focus on the present and the future…
    Anna recently posted..Általános áttekintés a fogbeültetés költségeiről

  20. OT and ET August 17, 2012 at 10:34 #

    Twitter: otandet
    poor woman! your spiral into minivan insanity has me laughing though. i heart you. and i vote VW! xo
    OT and ET recently posted..every now and then…

  21. Deirdre August 17, 2012 at 10:51 #

    Twitter: ladiesholiday
    Ugh. Sorry that happened, but having a new(ish) car is such a treat!

    I know you like photography- we are hosting a photog-blog hop if you’re interested in linking up!

    Cheers for the weekend!

    • Stasha August 20, 2012 at 03:17 #

      Twitter: NorthWestMommy
      Thank girl. WIll join.

  22. Pamela August 17, 2012 at 14:01 #

    Twitter: pameloth
    Sorry about your van, but getting a new one sounds fun! I voted.
    Pamela recently posted..Rebel, With or Without a Cause

  23. Liz August 18, 2012 at 10:16 #

    I see the Toyota won!! Enjoy your new wheels and I look forward to following your adventures again now you’re mobile!! :)

    If it makes you feel any better, I’ve been stuck at home mostly for the last few weeks, getting out only occasionally for doctors appts (and sneaking to the water on the way home camera in hand… against doctors orders!!). I haven’t edited many photos at all and haven’t looked at many blogs or posted much…. until this weekend!!! I decided it was time to surf the blogging world & write a few posts. :)
    I still have loads of images to edit and hubs is taking me on a day trip tomorrow which means I’ll probably come home with hundreds of shots which will need editing…
    And I don’t have a 4 year old or a huge dog equivalent to 3 children!!! So feel incredibly efficient my friend… you have probably still achieved more than I have!! :)
    Enjoy your weekend!
    Liz recently posted..Weekend Reflections & Skies

  24. Marie August 18, 2012 at 19:59 #

    Twitter: MarieMiracles
    Stasha, just to mix it up a little…we bought our first minivan over the holidays and are loving our Honda Odyssey! We are also refinancing–very happy as we are sending our high schooler to an expensive private school, and this will make things much easier. Plus I’m having all sorts of surgeries, which can be expensive–even with just a 20% copay!
    Marie recently posted..Happy 50th anniversary, Neal and Annette!

    • Stasha August 20, 2012 at 03:14 #

      Twitter: NorthWestMommy
      I could not splurge for the Honda. But my neighbor lend me hers when I had to go for a photo shoot while I was without car and it is divine. Possibly the reason I ended up buying the japanese minivan, comfort is above and beyond.
      It is amazing how far a few hundred dollars a month go, right?

  25. Jackie August 19, 2012 at 07:29 #

    Twitter: notwifezilla
    My Hubs did LOTS of research on the minivan thing. Too much in my humble opinion.
    Apparently the routon is a pimped out version of the Chrysler Town & Country and the Dodge Grand Caravan. (Check out edmonds for their reviews). Hence, I voted for the Sienna for you.

    We ultimately went with the Kia Sedona because of the safety rating & cheaper price tag.
    Jackie recently posted..Girl Party

    • Stasha August 20, 2012 at 03:10 #

      Twitter: NorthWestMommy
      Yep, that was the deal breaker with the VW. I loved it until I realized it was a Chrysler. Ended up with the Toyota. Kia did not have the 0% APR loan like the other two…

  26. BonnyBard August 19, 2012 at 07:39 #

    Twitter: thebonnybard
    I believed you up to “my house is immaculate” and then I snorted. 😉
    Neither are available in Europe so wouldn’t know what to say, but everyone I know in the US raves about the Sienna.
    BonnyBard recently posted..Stronger than the wind, hotter than the sun, steady like a mountain

    • Stasha August 20, 2012 at 03:11 #

      Twitter: NorthWestMommy
      OY! It could totally happen. I had a very clean house once, thank you very much. It was March 2005, I remember it clearly!

  27. Jen {at} take2mommy August 19, 2012 at 12:07 #

    I drive a Toyota Sienna. While I am still not 100% ok with the concept of being a minivan mama, I can still say that it’s an awesome ride.
    Jen {at} take2mommy recently posted..The Needy Entourage

  28. hollow tree ventures August 19, 2012 at 18:51 #

    Twitter: RobynHTV
    Every time I have to get a new car, I can’t WAIT until I can go ahead and forget everything I was forced to learn while trying to decide on the right one. Good luck!
    hollow tree ventures recently posted..With @BritelyApp, this blog writes itself

  29. [email protected] buildin August 20, 2012 at 04:35 #

    I’m glad you went with Toyota, it’s pretty much what a busy mom needs. Thanks!

  30. [email protected] floo August 20, 2012 at 04:40 #

    Minivans are way too functional and I would love to be able to drive one with my daughter in tow. I’m glad you went with the Toyota, it’s practical, economical and their spare parts are widely available at reasonable costs. Thanks for the share and I’m sorry about your old minivan.

  31. [email protected] value c August 21, 2012 at 20:19 #

    VW Routan is my vote!!!!… GOOD LUCK!!!!
    [email protected] value c recently posted..Avoid Gold for cash scams now!

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