It is already past 1:00 am and I am still twittering, copying, pasting, while reviewing my relationship with my mini-van. This is all for the good, as I get to test drive the 2010 Ford Fusion, America’s most fuel-efficient midsize sedan and learn Eco-driving techniques. It’s also taking me down a road well traveled as I remember the variety of automobiles I have driven. I’ve concluded that what I want now in a car is drastically different from what I wanted pre-mommy. After I became a mom for the first time at 37 years young (I am a 20 year old trapped in a 41 year old body), it wasn’t just about me and my husband anymore. In fact, my husband is a serious Volvo fan and won’t ever sell his car. It is 15 years old now and he still loves it as much as the first time he drove it off the lot. I asked why he loved this car so much and he replied promptly and proudly, “miles per gallon, seat warmers, trunk size, stereo sound, and acceleration”. That is great, but when we had a second, and than a third baby, the Volvo had to take a back seat to our main mode of transportation. Enter, Honda Odyssey. When I was single, a safe and affordable car was the solution to traveling back and forth from Columbia, Missouri to Chicago, Illinois. Once I graduated and I was employed, the priorities hadn’t changed except for my personal need for a convertible. That relationship ended shortly, as I traded it in for a year of traveling and working in Israel.
Life experience and three kids later, I am the proud parent of a Honda Odyssey and I love it! My DH and I joke about how we love our mini-van and still jam out to tunes (most of them are kid songs, but they sound great). My DH still drives the Volvo, but I take our precious cargo (our 3 kids) on many excursions. In order to be in Chicago in time for BlogHer, we drove 14 hour straight, from Queens, NY, to Chicago, IL. I felt less stressed because we didn’t have to rush and catch a flight. This journey was an excellent experience and I drove more than my husband for the first time. He was basically along for the ride and had to be on a plane back to NY just hours after we arrived in Chicago. He wasn’t complaining at all, in fact, he kept commenting on how comfortable he was in the back seat (in between catching some much needed sleep). He actually drove the most difficult leg of the trip, the 1:00 am-6:00 am shift. I am not such a fan of night driving, especially on a long stretch of highway. Thankfully, there was no traffic and he made really good time. I also learned the value of cruise control on long trips. I never knew that beside convenience, it also reduces the amount of gas used (I really never knew that). Our road trip experience was a very positive experience for me and my family. This road trip definitely has me prepped for a very exciting FordBlogHer event that I will be a part of this coming Thursday, July 23. I know you’ve already heard of Ford, but if you haven’t heard about BlogHer, you should check out blogher.com. What is it? My personal description of BlogHer is that it is an opportunity for women bloggers and the brands that want to reach them and everything else in between (parties, SWAG, technology, primping). It is no secret why a major corporation like Ford would be hosting a FordBlogHer event. According to “Marketing to Women” author Marti Barletta, women seek more advice from an auto authority (57 percent) before buying a new car; they spend more time in the purchasing process than men (17 weeks versus 15) and women shop at an average of three dealerships for best price and treatment. Thanks to Ford, I will be sharing “what women want” in an automobile with the people that can make it happen! Whether you drive a Ford or a Honda, there are certain things that you just don’t skimp on when it comes to the family cruising vessel. I’d like to include some of mine in this post, but I would also love to hear from you as a fellow mini-van maven.
What is important to me in a car?
Gas mileage – With three kids and tuition fees, we need to save money on everything.
Comfortable seats – Our passengers range from kids to grandparents, everybody deserves a comfortable ride.
Cleans easy – Don’t even look and the damage from our road trip, I need something that cleans easy and easy to get in the nooks and crannies full of crumbs and juice box remains
Cup holders – Mommy needs her coffee just as bad as the kiddies need there sippy cups
Built in Car Seats – Is this possible? While were on the topic, how about self-buckling so I don’t have to get back there and do it.
Safety – Overall plus reliable windshield washers (I hate when the window gets schmutzy and I have to spray the cleaner constantly to see the road ahead).
Seamless pick-up – A smooth accelerator is critical when changing lanes, especially in Manhattan.
Entertainment – Built in cell phone holders, DVD in the back for the kids, and a CD player that can hold up to 20 (I should probably just upload everything to the IPOD already).
SYNC Technology – I don’t want to be bothered with headsets, dangling ear pieces, and sliding cell phones. Also, I want a built in GPS that will take directions from my mouth rather than pushing buttons.
So, what do you want? I am very interested in promoting child safety and will be joining a Ford safety expert and certified child passenger safety (CPS) technician who will demonstrate proper child seat installation and point out common errors that lead to an alarming 70 percent of seats not being installed correctly. 70 percent, that’s so not safe! I’m also very interested in learning about SYNC, Ford’s fully integrated in-car communications and entertainment system that allows customers to operate mobile phones music players by voice commands. Keep up with the conversation and link to Ford all over the web. If you are on Twitter, I will be tweeting, as will @ScottMonty and @Ford. You can also follow the conversation by using #FordBlogHer and by keeping up with @primetimeparent or @sheitelstroll.