The Car Connection

Metro Parent's editor-in-chief discusses this month's minivan cover story.

I have always been one of those people who said, “I don’t care about nice cars. I just want something safe that gets me from point A to point B.”

But I realized about a year and a half ago that I was totally lying to myself.

That’s when I got a loaner from the Chevy dealership. It was a top-of-the-line Chevy Volt – a hybrid, gunmetal gray with a fin-like antenna and mean grill that made it look like a road shark. I was smitten from the start. But after a few days of averaging more than 200 miles per gallon of gas, I was in love.

But here’s the thing … it’s not a very family-friendly car – and it’s not really intended to be. There is a reason why moms and dads start to see cars way differently as their family grows. Practical features – like space for car seats and built-in vacuums – suddenly have more appeal than sleek, shark-like sedans or cute little coupes.

And yet, most moms and dads want to retain some sense of four-wheel flair.

When our senior editor, Stacey, had her baby last April, she swore up and down that she’d never be a “minivan mom.” I told her about all of my friends who have them and how that sliding door really does come in handy. She stood her ground and upgraded to a larger SUV a few months ago. It’s practical but she still feels like it’s a good reflection of who she is. And that really is the bottom line when it comes to parenting. There are all sorts of trade-offs when you take that role of raising a child. Great rewards, but sacrifices too. And so often, those sacrifices make us feel a little less like ourselves – or who we always thought we were.

“Before I had kids, I used to shave my legs every day.”

“Before I had kids, I used to go to the bathroom alone.”

“Before I had kids, I used to read books. Actual books. Not just magazines.”

“Before I had kids, … ” You fill in the blank. I don’t know a single mom who hasn’t uttered a version of that sentence at some time.

In this month’s cover story, “Minivan Makeover,” we offer some advice for parents looking to spruce up their wheels – whether you’re in the market for new ones, want more features in what you have or are struggling to keep your home away from home neat and winter-ready.

The truth is, being a parent means you are forever changed – and that may be reflected in your clothes and car. But it doesn’t mean you still aren’t you. When you’re driving your kids around town, like a part-time chauffeur, and you start to lose track of that, do this: Turn up the music with your high school jams and drive that minivan or mom mobile with some gleeful pride.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

- Advertisement -


ASMR and Kids: What is It, and What are the Pros and Cons?

YouTube has exploded with videos of people whispering, rustling buttons and even eating pickles – all to elicit a calm feeling. Can ASMR and kids be a good mix?

Michigan Science Center Welcomes New Earth. Wind. Weather. Exhibit

Detroit's science hub is set to teach kids the wonders of our planet's weather systems with its latest exhibit.

Adaptive Sports for Kids with Disabilities and Special Needs

In search of adaptive sports for kids with physical or developmental disabilities? Here are local sports programs for kids with special needs in the metro Detroit and Ann Arbor areas.

What Every Parent Should Know About Developmental Delays

You have a new baby in your life. But how will you know if your child is developing normally? An expert from the Autism Alliance of Michigan offers some insight.

- Advertisement -