While many people profess their utter disgust or unwavering love for minivans, I’ve been in like with our minivan from the start. We bought ours in November 2018, when Ari was a little over a year old and we couldn’t bear to take another week-long trip with a stuffed-to-the-gills car that had a stuffed-to-the-gills Thule box on top of it. I declared — repeatedly — that we were in the season of life for a minivan. Quietly, I told myself the next season of my life would include a much cuter car.
THIS season of our lives — the season of stay-at-home orders — calls for a minivan. You see, yesterday, after we dropped my husband off at Wegmans* so he could do the food shopping, I made a quick stop at a local bakery where I purchased
bribes sweet treats for everyone and a latte (Mama’s gotta have caffeine!) for myself. I drove back to the Wegmans parking lot where I made the kids — mostly Ari — promise they wouldn’t get crumbs all over the folded-down third row and trunk. Ari repeated, “I’m not gonna get crumbs on the floor. I promise! I’m gonna be neat with my brownie!”
Once we were in the parking lot, I reminded them of the rules:
- No one under the age of 18 is permitted in the front seat even though the car was turned off.
- Kids must stay in the car the entire time — no matter what.
- Eat neatly.
Once Isabelle and Ari agreed to the rules, I unbuckled Ari and had him follow Isabelle into the back of the minivan. I popped the hatch and slid myself into the trunk since it’s easier like that with my cane. From there, I laid out the snacks and handed out copious amount of napkins to the kids. Isabelle neatly ate a cookie that was larger than her head. I handed Ari sections of his brownie so that I could contain the mess. Thankfully, he voluntarily used napkins and allowed me to wipe his hands and mouth. I gobbled down a GF/vegan brownie that was terrible. (Don’t get me started on why I have a deep disdain for gluten-free baked goods that are also vegan. It’s more than a blog post for me… it would turn into a term paper.) So, I delighted in my latte and my company.
Just as I finished cleaning Ari’s hands, Isabelle shared an idea she thought was brilliant. “I think we should get a table for the back of the minivan so we can have more minivan picnics,” she said. (We had done a lunch picnic on a blanket in the back of our minivan the previous day so I guess she was sensing this was going to become a theme.)
“Yeah!” said Ari.
“Where are we going to put a table?” I asked.
Isabelle motioned to the area where my legs were, then she declared, “And I think we’ll need chairs too.”
Did she think this was a RV?!?!?
“We’re not getting a table and chairs for the back of the minivan,” I said.
Though, it might not be a bad idea if our Governor keeps extending the stay-at-home order since minivan picnics might be our best form of out-of-the-house recreation that still allows us to practice social distancing.