The Not-So-Delicate Art of Avoiding the Minivan

It was definitely not the first, but probably not the last thing I expected my husband to do when I told him we were expecting our third – begin immediate research into upgrading our car, with a particular emphasis on avoiding the minivan.

For weeks – 36, to be exact – we ran through our alternatives. I would receive emails that said, “If we do eventually break down and end up in a minivan, the [insert minivan make and model here] doesn’t look too terrible for what it is . . . “, followed by, “How about a 1976 Porsche 928 for me and 17 Subaru Bi-drive Recreational All-terrain Transporters for you and the kids?” We joked about buying a used super-sedan with a V-10 engine, a mini-minivan (could we get away with calling it a three-row wagon instead of a mini-minivan?), or a wagon with serious horsepower. But did we joke?

Katleyn and the Beamer

Katelyn admiring one of her favorite cars that lived on our street in Bangkok

I knew when I married my husband that I was marrying a man who came from a long line of car enthusiasts. He was born and bred to love fast, powerful automobiles. One of our first dates was to the Detroit Auto Show. The Detroit Auto Show. Pre-kids, we hosted Top Gear viewing parties. With kids, we frequented auto shows (which, by the way, are an excellent form of entertainment for little ones). Logan was able to name almost every make and model of car by the age of two and a half. Katelyn was close behind. Shameful, I know. Thus, the thought of moving to a power-starved, ghastly unattractive minivan with an abhorrent turning radius nearly physically sickened my husband. Him and me both. The truth is, I am a bit of a car snob myself. I wouldn’t be caught dead in a minivan.

Minivans are family-friendly, sure. Dual-sliding doors, space, captains chairs, reverse-sensing systems, yada yada yada. Plenty of our friends have them. Plenty of our family members have them. So, what does it say about us that we tried so hard to avoid – what is for so many – the inevitable switch to a minivan? Are we just too vain to go the minivan route? Or are we steadfast in our convictions to stick with what we prefer rather than let our family size dictate our automotive choices? Too stubborn to succumb to the pressure of practicality? Or too youthful to drive around a box on wheels? I’m pretty sure all of those explanations describe us.


Who doesn’t want a Toyota with a giant unicorn on top? At the Washington, D.C. auto show with Uncle Peter and Aunt Katie

So, what did we do in the end? Dual sliding doors be damned. We opted for a sport wagon. The kids are a bit cramped, but they’ve gotten over it.  And guess what the second most popular request, after listening to the Frozen soundtrack ad nauseam, is in our car? “Mommy/Daddy, can you put the car in sport mode?” Now tell me, minivan drivers, do you have a sport mode?

3 thoughts on “The Not-So-Delicate Art of Avoiding the Minivan

    • Loren says:

      Hi there! So true. We just didn’t enjoy driving them. Plus, the kids were too young to be able to do things for themselves (open granola bar wrappers, etc.) and we found the distance between them and us in the car to be a pain.

  1. gamingfather2015 says:

    I feel your pain, oh boy do I feel your pain. I can’t stand even the sight of a minivan next to my car. Sadly at the moment and time of buying a Prius was the most practical. However, before I even damn myself to the age of a minivan, the Toyota Highlander Hybrid is next in line for my new car. My wife on the other hand likes her Rav 4 and so she isn’t leaving it’s side anytime soon.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s