A Strange Week Ends With A New Car

Last Updated on May 21, 2016 by Kristi Linauer

I have nothing house-related to share today, but y’all don’t mind me sharing something that’s just life-related every now and then, right? I hope not. 🙂

This has felt like such a strange week to me, and it got even stranger yesterday when I woke up yesterday morning thinking to myself, “Today, I’m going to work on Roman shades all day and see how far I can get,” and by yesterday evening, I hadn’t gotten any sewing done, but what I had accomplished was purchasing a brand new car. Had I planned on buying a new car? Nope. Not at all. But that’s just how things happen sometimes. 😀

So here’s the story of my car. This is what I’ve been driving around in for the last 12 years.

my car - old 2004 Chevy Cavalier

Well, okay…this Chevy Cavalier didn’t look like THAT for the whole 12 years. When I got it, it was actually neat and clean and shiny, and had all of its hubcaps. I bought it used, but it was only a year old, and in almost-new condition. But at the time, we didn’t have much money to spend on a car, so I had to get the very base model, and wound up with a car that had manual windows and locks.

Okay, let me back up a bit…

In 2004, Matt and I were still living in Oregon, and he was still working at Hewlett-Packard. We knew at some point that we wanted to move to Waco (it’s my home, and where my family is), but we weren’t sure exactly when we could make that happen.

Well, then HP started a voluntary severance initiative to reduce the work force. This was in the wake of the disaster that Carly Fiorina had made of the company, and so nothing was certain. We figured that Matt could either take the severance, and at least we would have some money to live on for a few months while we transitioned to Texas, or he could stay and take a chance that he would still have a job two or three or five years later. But there were rumors that if there weren’t enough people who took the voluntary severance, then they were just going to start laying people off with no severance at all.

Matt had been there for 13 years, but we didn’t want to take the chance of him eventually being laid off with no severance, so we took the severance, and took that opportunity to come to Texas. But nothing was certain in Texas either. We had no jobs lined up, but we were certain we wanted to take this leap.

So after several days of thinking through the logistics of how to get us, our two cats, our dog, and all of our belongings to Texas, while spending the absolute least amount of money possible, we finally came up with a plan. We went through one of those companies that basically parks an 18-wheeler trailer in front of your house, and you pack up all of your belongings. Then they drive it for you to your destination, but you have to unpack it. And if you don’t use the whole trailer, they’ll load other people’s stuff in there as well. That way, you get the cheapest price possible.

With our stuff taken care of, we decided that the cheapest way to get us here would be to drive. We had two cars, but mine was an SUV, so we opted to sell mine and drive Matt’s since it got much better gas mileage. So we made the trip in Matt’s red 1990 Honda CRX. 😀 Now if you don’t know what a CRX is, it’s a tiny little hatchback.

red honda crx 1990

It’s only a two-seater car, but behind the seats there this ledge that sticks out about 10 inches (at least that’s how I remember it), and then there’s the hatch back trunk area that’s covered. Oh, and it was a manual transmission, and I didn’t know how to drive a manual transmission at the time.

So I got a crash course in how to drive a manual transmission, and our friend Louie made some adjustments to the hatch back part by creating a cover with built-in fans (one blowing into the trunk area and one blowing out of the trunk area) for air circulation. And then when departure day came, we put our suitcase and our 70-pound dog on the part behind the seat (we padded it with lots of blankets and it was actually a perfect fit for him), and put our two cats in the covered hatchback area with a litter box, food, and water, with the fans circulating plenty of fresh air for them (we did NOT want them locked in pet carriers for the entire trip), and we made the 2700 mile journey from Albany, Oregon, to Waco, Texas. 😀

Ahhhhh…sweet memories. That’s one of those memories that we look back on and think, “Were we absolutely insane?!” It was crazy.

Anyway, when we got here, we had one car, no jobs, and a very set amount of money to our names. My step-father gave me a truck to use, but then when I started doing interior decorating work, I didn’t feel like an old truck was really the appropriate transportation to be driving up to client’s houses in. So that’s when Matt and I decided to buy the Cavalier. But again, with only a set amount of money to our names, no steady income at the time, and me just starting a job that didn’t pay much with a local interior designer, we went as cheap as we could. I think we paid $5000 for it, and financed it for 60 months to get our monthly payments as low as they could possibly be.

And I’ve been driving that car ever since. As far as the engine goes, it has been a fantastic car. But in recent years, everything else seemed to be falling apart slowly but surely.

First it was the sun visor on the driver’s side. It just fell off. Completely. And it wouldn’t go back on. Then the side mirrors (which had to be manually adjusted) just decided to stop cooperating. I tried to adjust the passenger side mirror, and it wouldn’t budge. One day I tried to adjust the driver’s side mirror, and it wouldn’t budge either. I pushed harder, and it shattered.

Then the rearview mirror fell off. I drove around without it for a few weeks, and then decided to fix it. I purchased the appropriate adhesive from the auto store, followed the directions to a “T”, and it lasted about a week before falling off again. So I gave up and haven’t had a rearview mirror in probably two years.

And then one day at Sonic, I got too close to the menu sign as I was backing out of the stall, and the plastic casing around the side mirror caught on the credit card reader and broke off part of the plastic mirror casing. Classy. (And no, it didn’t mess up their credit card reader at all.)

Then my dashboard started cracking all to heck because I started getting more and more into DIY projects, so I would carry lumber in my car, and put the 8- and 10-foot boards through the trunk and resting on the dashboard in the front. Evidently dashboards don’t like that so much, because after a few years of that, big pieces of the dashboard were breaking off and falling down behind the dashboard and into the air conditioner fans.

So my air conditioner stopped working. I went two summers without it, and then we paid several hundred dollars to get it fixed. Then last summer it stopped working again, so it currently has no air conditioner. I’ve driven a car with no air conditioner for three summers now…IN TEXAS.

At some point, my windshield wipers broke (one of those blower fans at a drive through car wash caught on my wiper and pulled it so hard it broke). I went for a while without them, just making sure I didn’t drive in the rain, but I finally did get them fixed. They were never the same, though, and only did about 80% of the job that they originally did.

Somewhere along the way, three of the hubcaps fell off while I was driving.

And finally, the few bells and whistles that my stripped-down basic model car actually did have stopped working. When everything actually worked like it was supposed to, and I left my lights on and tried to get out of the car, it would ding and let me know I had left the lights on. But about a year ago, it stopped dinging. If I left the radio on and turned the engine off, the radio used to go off as soon as I opened the door. It stopped doing that, too. So if I left my radio on, it would just play and play and play until it drained the battery. So over the last year, I’ve dealt with a dead battery at least six or seven times because I’ve accidentally left my lights on, or my radio on.

I’m sure that’s not all, but to say that I’ve driven that car into the ground would be an understatement.

I’ve never really given my car much thought, because those things breaking happened gradually over the years, and I just kind of got used to the broken parts as they happen. And I’m just really not a car person. If I have something with an engine and four wheels that can get me from point A to point B, I’m pretty satisfied. But this last Tuesday, it really hit me how dangerous my car had gotten.

I went to my sewing class at Joann Fabric, and I was there for about two-and-a-half hours. The only windows in that building are at the front, and we weren’t close to the front of the store, so I had no idea what was going on outside. So when I got out of my class and headed to my car, I realized that there was some pretty serious weather on the way. The wind was getting really strong, and I could see lightening in the distance.

I got in my car and headed home, but I didn’t get very far before the rain hit. And the wind! I learned later that the wind got up to 75 miles per hour! So there I was driving in the dark, in the pouring down rain, in a car with no rearview mirror and side mirrors that weren’t worth a darn, so I couldn’t see what was going on around me. The rain was so heavy that I could only drive about 20 miles per hour, and because it was so heavy, I obviously couldn’t roll my window down for any air circulation. My air conditoner doesn’t work, and because it was so hot and humid in the car, my windows were fogging up. So while I was driving 20 MPH at night in this pouring rain, holding the steering wheel as tightly as I could to steady my car against the 70+ MPH wind, I was also having to wipe down the inside of my windshield on the driver’s side every minute or so just so I could see out. And every time I’d pass under a street light, or pass oncoming traffic, the light would glare off of the fogged over windshield and completely obstruct my view. And of course, my sad windshield wipers were no match for that heavy rain.

I’m not gonna lie. I was a nervous wreck when I got home. And I said to Matt, “I NEED a new car! This thing is just a danger on the road!”

But then we turned our attention to dinner, and kind of forgot the whole car thing. 😀

And that brings me to yesterday. I headed out to my car yesterday morning to make my regular morning trip to Sonic for iced tea, and my car wouldn’t start. I had left my lights on. So I texted my family to see if anyone was out and about and could stop by with some jumper cables. My sister was running errands, so she came to my rescue. We got my car started, I got my iced tea, and I got my day started.

Then about 2:00 yesterday afternoon, I needed to go to Home Depot to get the dowel rods for my Roman shades. I got in my car, and it wouldn’t start AGAIN! I hadn’t left anything on that time, so that means that there was another problem with it. Possibly the alternator? I have no idea.

I went inside and discussed some options with Matt. Sure, we could have it towed and get the problem fixed, but we just put $150 into it last month. That’s not a lot of money, but just the idea of putting more money into that car didn’t set well with me.

So around 3:00, we finally starting discussing the possiblity of buying a new car. But how long would it take to look at cars, test drive cars, find exactly what I want, and make the purchase? And what would I do in the meantime? We decided to rent a car for a few days while I did some car shopping.

Well, I called every single car rental place in Waco, and there wasn’t one single rental car available in all of Waco! Not one. Zero. None. All of the car rental places in Waco had sent all of their inventory up to the Dallas area after the big storm this week, and they literally had none here.

I was so frustrated. And then it dawned on me. I didn’t need to test drive any cars. I knew exactly what I wanted! For several years now, I’ve wanted a Honda. They’re awesome cars — reliable, well-built, etc. And I like small cars, so I knew I wanted a Civic.

I got on the phone and called the local Honda dealer (Greg May Honda), and asked them about their current inventory. I had been online looking at the colors available, so I knew what color I wanted, and they had several on their lot! So I told them I wanted to come buy it, but I didn’t have any transportation.

They came and picked me up at 6:15 yesterday evening, and at 8:00 I drove my brand new 2016 Honda Civic in the Modern Steel Metallic color off of the dealership parking lot.

my car - new 2016 Honda Civic - 2

I love everything about this car!! It was funny, because when I got there, the sales person said, “Okay, now do you want to drive it?” And I said, “Ummm…sure.” To be honest, I didn’t need to drive it to know it was just what I wanted. My mom has a Civic, and I LOVE driving her car!

Oh my goodness…this car has been hard-earned. I’ve never in my life had a brand new car, so this is a new experience for me. And after driving my junker around for so long now, I feel like a queen driving around in this thing! With an ACTUAL rearview mirror! And power side windows! And power door locks! And power windows! And hubcaps! And bluetooth! 😀

What a crazy week it’s been. But what a fun way to close out this crazy week!

my car - new 2016 Honda Civic

Now that I have reliable transportation again, I can actually make that trip to Home Depot and get back to working on my house. 🙂

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  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 11:02 am

    What a treat for you!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 11:14 am

    Congratulations on a well earned, on a well deserved wonderful new car.

    Wishing was in a place to get a good used car…carless in Dallas

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 11:15 am

    Ha I love your story!
    It’s starting to sound like mine- I bought my 2004 pontiac in college- it only had 9,000 miles on it.
    12 years later and I’m just praying every day she still runs. The wipes also only run about 80% and there are dings/rust all over even though I try SO hard to take care of it.
    Cars are a pain but so necessary… 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Lori L
    May 13, 2016 at 11:21 am

    Your car is beautiful, Kristi! And you so deserve it! I was reading your post and could not believe you were driving that car in a huge storm with all those issues! God definitely protected you! I’m very happy for you and Matt! 😊

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 11:22 am

    Weee! So happy for you! Enjoy!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Linda J
    May 13, 2016 at 11:31 am

    I’m so happy for you. Not having any transportation at all (my van died and I am retired with no funds for a new car), I know what it feels like to be you! Enjoy! You earned it.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Kelly Palmer
    May 13, 2016 at 11:35 am

    Congratulations!! It is so pretty 🙂 I must say though that I was a bit surprised that you didn’t go with a truck or van to haul all of the home improvement materials that you get. Will it be a problem or concern for you to haul them in your beautiful new car?

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      May 13, 2016 at 4:07 pm

      I was thinking the same thing as Kelly Palmer. Hopefully there won’t be a cracked dashboard in the new car.
      I know how you feel. I’m still driving my 2000 Pontiac Grand Prix with my own set of issues.
      Congrats on your new car Kristi!

      • Reply To This Comment ↓
        May 13, 2016 at 4:22 pm

        Same thing I was thinking.
        My hubby wants a truck and I have no need for one even though there a times we have to hire someone to haul things for us since we don’t have a truck. What is it with guys and trucks? ;0)

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 11:35 am

    I bought a brand new 1998 Accord and it still runs perfect to this day! Hondas are the best. Enjoy

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Bonnie Leighton
    May 13, 2016 at 11:38 am

    But will it haul lumber???? LOL! Glad you got a new one. I tend to drive mine into the ground as well…

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 11:39 am

    Be careful carrying lumber in this car so the dash doesn’t fall apart. I’m happy for you. I’m not much of a car person either but I definitely want to know I’m driving something safe.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 11:40 am

    Huge congratulations! Your story about driving around in that storm reminds me of when I used to drive a car w/ no AC (Original Beetle, 1969 year) in Florida in those storms. No A/C, tee-tiny little windshield wipers that even when they worked they couldn’t keep up, windows fogging and so on 🙂

    I did half expect that maybe you would fashion some sort of bespoke rearview mirror out of wood (and/or fabric) for the old car. Maybe you can start a parallel blog about designer custom car parts!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 11:42 am

    Congrats! I have a 2008 Civic and I love that car! I’ve only replaced brakes and tires. My A/C is acting a bit wonky, so that may be next, but for an 8 year old car, I can’t complain. My hope is to pass it to my daughter when she gets her license in two years.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Marie W
    May 13, 2016 at 11:43 am

    This comment: “Then my dashboard started cracking all to heck because I started getting more and more into DIY projects, so I would carry lumber in my car, and put the 8- and 10-foot boards through the trunk and resting on the dashboard in the front. Evidently dashboards don’t like that so much, because after a few years of that, big pieces of the dashboard were breaking off and falling down behind the dashboard and into the air conditioner fans.” made me think you were getting a truck or SUV. I hope you have another way to carry your lumber these days!

    Congrats on the new car, it’s awesome! Enjoy.


  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Lisa Johnson
    May 13, 2016 at 11:44 am

    Love the new car! I drove a Honda Prelude for 18 years and absolutely loved that car, so I wish for you that your new car will be as great as mine was! Happy Driving! 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 11:46 am

    You’re from Albany, OR?! Somehow, after all these years I never put it together that Matt worked in the Corvallis HP plant. I always assume that when people say they’re from Oregon that means Portland. My parents still live out in their little country house off Knox Butte which is no longer in the country. Nothing beats a summer night stop at Hasty Freeze and then heading over to Monteith for River Rhythms after floating the Willamette River all day. Enjoy the new car, I know feel like we’re part of the same private club!

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Julie B.
      May 13, 2016 at 3:54 pm

      I graduated from OSU so I thought exactly the same thing. And so sad about HP — it used to be an engineering company….

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 11:48 am

    I had a little red Civic that I loved, but it became too small for hauling kids, pets, and stuff around so I got a Honda CRV that I have had for 10 years. I’m really surprised that you didn’t get a small SUV or crossover that is better suited to hauling lumber and other building/decorating supplies around.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 12:02 pm

    Good for you! I love my Honda as well! I hope you don’t continue to load it with lumber!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 12:25 pm

    Now, clean out half your garage so that you can get that nice new car under cover!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 12:37 pm

    A great color choice to park in front of your yellow house 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 12:37 pm

    Congratulations! You’ve earned that beautiful new car. I lived for three years with a car with no a/c in Kansas City and the summers were unbearable. I can’t imagine doing that in Texas!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 12:38 pm

    Congrats on the new ride! I got my first brand new car last year when my 12-year old SUV started needing expensive repairs. I always bought used before too. Isn’t it fun to get that new car smell and all new fun bells and whistles. I always drove Nissans before, but this time I bought a Subaru Forester and I love, love this car. Hope you enjoy many years in your new Civic.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 12:41 pm

    Maybe you can rent the trucks for $20 an hour from Home Depot to haul lumber home so you don’t mess up your shiny new car.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 12:42 pm

    With us, the message to BUY A NEW CAR, has always come through loud and clear. With our first, a VW Beetle, the mechanic finally said, “Look, you both have jobs. It’s time to buy a new car.” With our second, a Mercury Capri, an engine fire delivered the message. Our Honda Accord was 19 when we gave it up. The engine was still good, but the seats were falling apart, one door wouldn’t open and the air conditioner quit. Now, we have a 16-year-old Honda Civic that got hit in a hailstorm a few weeks ago. This time, Mother Nature told us it was time for a new car.

    The financial experts say that to get all your money’s worth out of a car, keep it 8-10 years. You get an even better value by paying cash, which we did. You made a smart choice with the Civic. Ours has 81,000 miles, has never had mechanical problems, has been garaged and pampered and the AC still works. The hail damage is not that bad. We’ll probably sell it on our own. It will still be a reliable, inexpensive car for someone.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 12:51 pm

    Kristi, whoever said “Good things come to those who wait” couldn’t have been more right. 🙂
    With the things you and your family have endured and yet remain unchanged from it all; I would say that you are more than deserving of your new car. Enjoy
    I would like to tell you what an inspiration you are to me; the things you’ve taught me…
    I look forward to your next thought, because I know you will share it with us all. I just hope you don’t mind that my house looks exactly like yours.
    God Bless,
    Michell and Family

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 12:59 pm

    I love my civic. Hope you have a long and happy life together.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 1:15 pm

    Congrats on the new car! I know the Civic will last a long time, my son had one while in the Marines, and passed it onto the daughter of a good friend. Apparently, it is still going strong. I finally broke down an got a new (to me) car last summer. My little Jeep Wrangler is 17 yrs old and has 275,000 miles on it. It WILL get a motor overhaul one of these days soon, and will continue to take me where I want to go! (Although the newer car is a hybrid and gets great mileage!) We tend to keep our vehicles a long time too. When I was looking into trading off a Chevy we had, I heard the guy checking it out tell the salesman “she got her money’s worth”. haha


    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      May 13, 2016 at 1:18 pm

      By the way, JB Weld will keep a rearview mirror on the windshield….. just saying 🙂 It’s good for lots of car “repairs”!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 1:16 pm

    LOVE your spiffy new Civic! I drive one, also! We found a 2010 w/only 10,000 miles on it in 2013 to keep at our winter home in the SW. I flippin love it! I previously owned a 1994 Honda Accord stick shift for 15 years and absolutely loved that car! Had about 170K miles on it and still going strong! (gave it to a friend who needed a car – but she let her son drive it and he wrecked it! 🙁 ) Then I got a Toyota Camry in 2009, which is OK, but had I known I would love the Civic as much as I do, I’d have gotten the Civic rather than the Camry. Take care of that baby with regular maintenance and it will drive forever!!! So important to have a save, reliable vehicle if you are a woman who is out and about alone quite often. Good decision!

    Happy Weekend!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Barbara H.
    May 13, 2016 at 1:39 pm

    Congratulations! I finally let go of my 14 year old PT Cruiser that I absolutely loved on December 31 and bought a 2015 new Honda CR-V. I still miss the old Cruiser – it could haul almost anything – but after some issues I wasn’t sure I could trust it anymore. It only had 106,000 miles on it so I hope it’s new owner is enjoying it. I had a Civic Hatchback before that and the first car was a VW Rabbit. Are you sensing a theme here? Loved the Rabbit too but the Civic was the most reliable, so I chose a Honda for the new one. I’m glad you listened to the new car message before a more serious message came through.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 1:44 pm

    Congrats! Sounds like you earned that new card for sure. It’s a beauty! How will you get all that lumber home now? LOL!

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      May 13, 2016 at 2:04 pm

      I was going to say that too!! Dont put lumber in your brand new car!!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Mrs Mike
    May 13, 2016 at 2:00 pm

    I’m so happy for you!!! I bought my first new car ever three years ago and still smile when I make my car payment each month. And I’m almost horrified that you made it through three summers here in TX with no a/c!!!! Enjoy your beautiful new car 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Kristine Brown
    May 13, 2016 at 2:01 pm

    I bet you do feel like a “queen” driving in that beautiful brand new car! Now, you will have to decide how you will transport all your building materials! We have 2 cars in our home and always maintain one as our “hauling” car (an suv). But we also have a small trailer that hooks to our suv that has been the most wonderful thing ever. We now get to buy all our own mulch and garden soil at a mere fraction of what we paid in bags ($23 per yard!). Anyway…… one thing at a time!!! Congratulations!!! What a hilarious story about your old car!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 2:03 pm

    So happy for you!! The first brand new car i owned was a civic too and i loved it!! Good luck with your new wheels!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Susan Davis
    May 13, 2016 at 2:08 pm

    Congratulations! Best to you and Matt.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 2:09 pm

    Nice hubcaps. 😉
    This story was so great. Its crazy how you can get used to things “just a little bit at a time” and then when you get something different you realize just how out of what things were. Enjoy your new car!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 2:35 pm

    and ANOTHER thing we have in common! If we lived closer we definitely would be best friends:)

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 3:00 pm

    I am thrilled for you! I have owned 3 Civics over the years. My current Civic EX is 13 years young! I can tell you that I have had all of the recommended service and a few boo-boos repaired, but I have never spent a single penny on an unexpected repair to this car. It just keeps going. I hope your experience is as awesome as mine!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 3:01 pm

    Nice car! My car died in March and I bought a Honda CRV .

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 3:08 pm

    Good for you! I had to laugh though. In 1990 I drove my Subaru from Bend, Oregon to Kansas City under similar circumstances – with one dog & 2 cats. That car went through hell and back, survived 2 head-on crashes (neither my fault) and was finally given to my brother in law when I had had enough of living here without A/C. (There is no need in Oregon) I’m now driving a 12 year old van with more things broken than working.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 3:10 pm

    Kristi, I Love hearing your little stories and when they end in a new well-deserved car, that’s extra special. Enjoy your car!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Rebecca B
    May 13, 2016 at 3:29 pm

    The new car is lovely. And you have certainly proven that you are frugal, after driving the same car (into the ground) for 12 years. I think it sounds like a rational major purchase. Good luck with hauling big items around! Hope the interior is up to it!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 3:43 pm

    Good for you! I’m happy for you!!!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 4:26 pm

    Ahahaha, and this is what happens when you get completely fed up with something – you just make a BIG decision seemingly suddenly. And to my experience, you never, ever feel the slightest bit of regret. Enjoy your new car, you deserve it! (but maybe put a roof rail for the lumber this time? lol)

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 4:40 pm

    I had to laugh as I also start my day by going to Sonic for an iced tea run. Have to get out of the house first thing so I can go right back with my rear in high gear in the mood to get things started. Hello from Lawrence, KS. Really enjoy your blog. Hope you enjoy the well-deserved new car.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 4:55 pm

    Congratulations Kristi! I hope you take at least one leisurely drive down the road to enjoy your new car before getting back to the grind. 🙂 Enjoy your new car.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    edith lawson
    May 13, 2016 at 5:04 pm

    Hondas are the best! Congrats!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 5:46 pm

    Can’t think of a more deserving person/family!!! Gives me goosebumps…what a great story. Thank you so much for sharing!!

    I have always had Honda lawnmowers. My current one even has “cruise control”. Only a Honda…ha

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Betsy M.
    May 13, 2016 at 5:58 pm

    My husband got his Civic in that color exactly in March. Our favorite thing is the digital odometer! And I’m on my second Honda Fit, which I love even more than the Civic because of the way the back seats lift up to create amazing carrier space.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      May 15, 2016 at 11:24 pm

      Yes!!! I love, love, LOVE my Honda Fit! Small and fun to drive, easy to fit in tight DC parking spaces, and fantastic for carrying all kinds of stuff. I love that the back seats can flip up or down. It also has more backseat leg room than previous cars I’ve had. My mom has a Honda CRV which is a great car also, but I like that the Fit is a little bit smaller.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Maryette Garrett
    May 13, 2016 at 7:21 pm

    Congratulations Dear, you have certainly earned it…you are quite a testament to hard work!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Angie Cody
    May 13, 2016 at 8:04 pm

    I had a very similar situation last October. My car broke down on the way to work, the car died mid drive and lost power steering. This was Saturday, a friend let me borrow her daughters car while she was at college but needed it back by Wednesday evening. So Monday night I’m looking at the Honda dealer across from work and they had the 2015 Civic for $150 a month lease!!! I needed more mileage but it only went up to $170 and i was able to purchase and drive it home Tuesday! I LOVEEEEEE my Civic. Congrats!!!!! =]

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 8:31 pm

    Totally unrelated to your latest post… But I saw this earlier today and thought of you😉http://www.traditionalhome.com/kitchens/showhouse-kitchen-designed-christopher-peacock

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Marianne in Mo.
    May 13, 2016 at 8:48 pm

    You were an angel for taking that car to the grave! I don’t think I could have done without a/c in Texas, or anywhere, and I have to have good wipers! I make my hubs get new blades for mine every 6 months. 😉 So congrats on the new car! I guess it’s easier for Matt to get in and out of a sedan instead of an SUV.
    I have a 2005 Mazda Tribute ( no longer made ) that I bought new, and I still love it to death! The only thing wrong with it is that the drivers seat is not as comfy as it used to be, but my SIL tells me I can get a new one. I’m just afraid it may mess with the heated seat, which was one of the things that sold me on this car! I hope it lives on until I can no longer drive, but I’m only 62, so I hope I will be driving a long while! My hubs bought a new VW Passat last year, & I hate that car, because it sits low, and I struggle to get in and out of it. It also seems big to me, but it isn’t that big. I’m just not used to driving a sedan vs. an SUV. If they still made my car, I would buy another one, but now I guess it would be a Subaru Forester, if I needed to replace mine.
    Enjoy your new wheels! BTW, what did you do with the beater car?

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      May 15, 2016 at 6:23 am

      Stick with Mazda, Marianne! Just switched from Subaru outback to the tribute replacement: the CX-5. Love it!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 10:01 pm

    Congrats! I currently drive a 2001 Jetta VW – it won’t die. But it’s in pretty good shape all things considered. Do you have inspections in TX? You wouldn’t have passed inspection with no mirrors in MA!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 13, 2016 at 10:19 pm

    Congratulations Kristi! What a beautiful color. You will love your Civic. I had a Honda Accord for 17 years. Finally traded up for a 2013 Civic with all the bells and whistles last summer. I love it, love it, love it.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 14, 2016 at 1:33 am

    haha, what a great story. The story alone earns you the new car 🙂

    Only problem I see is the new car will make the exterior of the house look untidy and that will get elevated up the list, meaning there is no time to finish the interior. That’s how it would pan out for me.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Maggie Obst
    May 14, 2016 at 2:58 am

    Well what a story and has taken all day to sit and read about your motoring adventure. And what a lovely car you have bought. A princess why not! Enjoy your news beautiful Honda. Love your story can relate to some of it. 👏💞💞💞

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 14, 2016 at 4:17 am

    How exciting for you and very well deserved! Now you and Matt have reliable transportation that will be yours for a long time. I have had 2 Hondas, my last being a Prelude, that I drove 200,000 miles. I drove that little car until I no longer needed it and sold it to a teenaged girl who drove it in high school and thru college. Good choice and I know you will enjoy!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 14, 2016 at 9:45 am

    Hey, grats on the new car!

    Regarding hauling lumber and the dashboard: My dad used to drive a Nissan Altima and would haul lumber sometimes, and to keep there from being any damage, he’d carry extra rags/ old shirts and wrap them on the butt of the lumber that would be pressing against the dashboard (and sometimes the other end of lumber too. That way there’d the dashboard wouldn’t get scratched and impacts would be (slightly) softened.

    Sometimes he’d also place a rag on the armrest/storage thing between the front seats too. Just something for you to keep in mind. Hopefully it’s helpful for you!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 14, 2016 at 9:51 am

    The dash likely did not fall apart because you were hauling lumber. The plastic inside and outside just gets old and first the surface cracks and then the guts crumble. I’ve had the dash crack badly and I never hauled lumber in that vehicle.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 14, 2016 at 11:39 am

    I also have two Honda civics – 2001 with about 116k miles on it that I bought last year and 2002 with 230k miles on it. It was a salvage car that I bought with 60k miles. I love them both and when it’s time for another car, it will be another Civic. But I might splurge and get it new, or maybe not, just depends on what’s available when it’s time. I’m sure you will enjoy your new car and with car, get many more enjoyable years out of it than that Chevy!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 14, 2016 at 1:00 pm

    I had a civic and I loved it!! Someone ran a yield sign and totaled my civic so I went and bought…the exact same civic again. No one even knew I got a different car. Then I had three kids in my car for six months and the poor car started to fall apart and we got a minivan. Boo! It’s five years later and the minivan does have some nice hauling capacity, but we made it work with the civic too! I miss it-gas mileage, cheaper insurance, zipping around and easily parking anywhere-can’t go wrong with a civic! We even loaded lumber and just covered the back seats that were layed flat and tied the trunk down with twine and put a flag on the end of the lumber. I think you made a great choice.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 14, 2016 at 1:22 pm

    What a wonderful story… Had a good and much needed laugh – you write well 😀
    Found this post in spam….do not have a clue how it ended up there… Glad I found it!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 15, 2016 at 11:16 pm

    You picked a good brand! My brother had a civic till a teen totaled it (not looking both ways) and my Honda is still going, but it’s starting the repair cycle. Hoping to pass 200k with this one (@180k) You’ll love how honda’s are designed to haul more than just people, just take note of their weight limit before you start hauling dense stuff (mine was less than expected that I kinda ingored once or twice). Parts are easy to find when they start breaking on you. Tip I learned this year: an extension ladder is great lashed to your roof on lumber runs and allows you to pick up even longer lumber. Enjoy!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 16, 2016 at 1:36 am

    Your new car is beautiful! Lucky girl!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Sharon C
    May 16, 2016 at 11:06 am

    Congratulations on the brand new car. So happy for you and Matt. So well deserved and so well earned and loved the story!!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 16, 2016 at 1:41 pm

    Congrats! Just drove the same car home from the dealership for my husband 2 weeks ago. He got the Aegean Blue. He had a 2008 Civic that was needing tires and we figured brakes etc would be around the corner. I drive a 2014 Civic. Obviously we love them!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    May 17, 2016 at 1:15 pm

    New cars are the BEST!!!!!!! even if they are just “new to you”! And yours is beautiful!!