Sunday, December 31, 2006

On Shopping

When I was younger, I could shop 'til I dropped !! Any store was an adventure.

As an adult, that changed. Those who know me are aware that I HATE HATE HATE to shop. I do not like to shop for groceries, clothing, shoes, toys, or even window shop. "Browse" is something I only do at the library if I can manage it !!

** The ONE exception is that I do have a weakness for books of any kind - new books, old books, big books, little books. I can do some serious damage to our finances in a bookstore. HA !!

Anyway ..... for the last several monthes DadToCherubs has been talking about our need to replace our Suburban. It has 184K miles on it, it is starting to nickle-dime us to death, it is not going to live forever .... he was building up to the "We need to shop for a car" talk. "We just need to go and look" he would say. "No pressure" he would say. "We need to see what our options are" he said. YIKES !!

And after several years of selling cars himself (years ago), he says the BEST time to buy a used car is during the week between Christmas and NewYear's .... dealers pay taxes based on yearly inventory, all "used" cars become a year OLDER on January 1st, and so forth .... I always get nervous when CARS are mentioned after Thanksgiving because that MIGHT mean we have to shop. It has been quite a few years since "the last time".

So - yesterday was the day. I VERY reluctantly agreed to go to town to "look" and see what our options were. We drove to the city and spent almost all day "looking". We drove through dealerships, talked to sales people, looked at stickers .... YIKES !!

First, let me say that Car Sales is one VERY slick business, complete with the "motivational music". We noticed that at most dealerships, the salesmen are "circling" the sales lot like VULTURES ... waiting for a fresh kill. (hee hee hee !) And at one dealer, our children asked if an Auctioneer (like in the movies - fast speech and all) was going to come out to "sell" the car. Too funny !! At a few dealers, I truly thought paramedics would be necessary as I felt I was quite near having a heart attack (I think they call it "sticker shock") .... but as soon as we left THOSE dealers and I felt immediately better. HA !!

Anyway, we found what we feel is a great used car. It is a Forest Green (exterior) 2004 Ford Expedition with low mileage. It seems to run great, has a nice warranty, and almost every "bell & whistle" available, including a tan leather interior (not my first choice with 6 children - HA !). It is a bit shorter than our Suburban and sits considerably higher, but I think we will get used to it. There is plenty of passenger space, but less trunk space. It does have a roof rack, so we may need to consider a top-carrier or some kind for traveling. There is also plenty of floor space for Daisy .... we made sure of that too !!

This is a nice car for SHORT PEOPLE like us. DadToCherubs is 5'6" and I am 5'0". It has electric seats - forward, backward, higher, lower, back up and down .... and it has a button that actually MOVES the brake and gas pedals CLOSER to your feet. So being "petite" does not matter as much when you drive this car.

Anyway, it is a very nice vehicle ... and it was a very painful day for me personally (I hate to shop), ... but it is OVER ... and the car is beautiful and will likely prove to be very practical.

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