ode to the minivan.

Full disclosure. I sell cars. I have since college. I work for Napleton’s Toyota of Urbana, formerly O’Brien Auto Park of Urbana. And they’re paying me to write this post. So read it. Share it. Click on and through the links. And if you’re in the market for a new vehicle (Toyota, Volkswagen, Hyundai, Kia, Mitsubishi, Mazda or anything pre-loved) give us a shout. We’d love to earn your business. You will help me convince my boss this kind of advertising works–the honest mom kind–and I’d love you forever for that.

Also full disclosure. I would have written this post anyway. Even if they weren’t paying me. Because I really really really love my Toyota Sienna Minivan. And I want to tell you allllll about it. 

. . .

I remember my girlfriend Carrie telling me once that she loved her minivan more than her husband.

It was before I had kids so I didn’t really *get* it. I thought maybe she’d (we’d) just had one too many glasses of wine. And we had. Or she was trying to flatter me–her favorite car salesperson. And she was.

But at that time she was a mom of two little baby girls–and she was 100% serious.

Five years and two kids later–I get it, Carrie. I feel you. Sorry Danny. Haha. I love my Swaggerwagon so hard.

. . .

I got pregnant with Dean when Johnny was just a few weeks old. I was lugging around a heavy infant seat and soon realized I’d be lugging around two heavy infant seats. I felt the need to make my life as easy as possible. So I traded in my SUV for the mother of all vehicles–literally. The minivan.

We bought our Toyota Sienna four years ago. And I love it just as much today as I did that first day we brought it home. Here are my top ten things I love about it–in no particular order.

1. Smart Key and Power Sliding Doors and Rear Lift Gate. Look ma, no hands (literally)! Unlock, lock and open the sliding doors and lift gate with the click of a button. So handy for a mom who has her hands full.


2. It’s spacious. Mine fits eight passengers. Plenty of room for my good vibe tribe. Here’s a pic of us from a few years back–Danny, Uncle Nic, Nanny Carol, the boys and Grandpa Hat and me (in the way back). We ride around like this all the time. So. Much. Space.


3. The back-up camera and parking assist. I can see what’s behind me. And my van beeps at me when I get too close to anything–like the side of the garage–which I hit twice with my old car that didn’t have this feature.


4. Dual View Entertainment Center with ear phones. They can hear their show. I can hear my music. Win. Win.


5. Sun Shades. Keeps the sun out of their eyes. So I don’t have to listen to them whine about it.


6. Climate Control. Backseat passengers can control their own AC and heat. And the driver and front seat passenger can control their own too–perfect if one of you is cold blooded and the other is hot blooded. And now you’re singing that song.

7. Navigation with touch screen. Because one of us is always getting lost. And the other hates asking for directions. You can guess who is who.


8. Safety Features (Vehicle Stability Control, Traction Control, Anti-lock Brake System, Electronic Brake Force Distribution, Brake Assist, Smart Stop Technology, Blind Spot Monitor, Front and Rear Parking Assist, Air Bags, Latch systems in four locations, including lower anchors and tethers on outboard secon- and third-row seats. Child Anchor Locks. Ummm…all that because of all that precious cargo. Enough said.

9. Eco Driving Indicator, MPG. Soooo, I may have a little bit of a lead foot. Or I did. Before I discovered this feature that lights up to tell me when I’m driving in a way that conserves gas and emissions. Now I drive super slow. Boom.

10. These hooks on the back of the way back seats. And the way these way back seats fold down. The hooks are great when I actually remember to bring my re-usable grocery bags to Schnuck’s–or when I don’t (they hold plastic bags too).


Or if I clean out my closet and want to drive around for three months with three bags of clothes I need to donate to Goodwill. Please tell me you do that too. Whoops. And four bag chairs I drag around all week for Saturday morning TBall games).


. . .

I could probably come up with 100 things I love about my minivan. Tons of cup holders, tons of nooks and crannies to hide snacks and hair bands, the hands-free Bluetooth phone, a CD player (yes, I still listen to CDs), satellite radio and USB port, how my husband looks driving it, etc.  But you get the gist.

And something else to love? Toyota is offering $1000 rebate or 0% for 60 months (to qualified buyers) this entire month of May. What’s better than free money? Nothing. Nothing is better than free money.

Thinking about a minivan? Come see us at Napleton’s Toyota of Urbana. Tell them I sent you. And get some Swagger(wagon) love in your life. You’ll thank me, I promise.

2 thoughts on “ode to the minivan.

  1. Regan Phillips says:

    Seriously the best car ever!! I was solidly anti-minivan until I had a Sienna and now I wouldn’t trade it for the world!!


Leave a Reply

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

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com 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 )

Google+ photo

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

Connecting to %s